July 2, 2008

Barack Obama "is supposed to be the tonic for the culture wars of the 60s."

But, Maureen Dowd says, "it’s Obama who seems trapped, sucked back into yesteryear" (i.e., Vietnam):
Wes Clark joined the growing ranks of troublesome Obama associates when he meowed that just “riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down” is not a qualification to be president. He made McCain sound like a drone aircraft....

Another renowned Marine grunt in Vietnam, Democratic Senator Jim Webb, chimed in on MSNBC, advising flyboy McCain to “calm down” on his promotion of his military service, saying we need to “get the politics out of the military.”
Calm down? The only point of saying that is to piss off McCain. There's nothing more irritating than being told to calm down. And McCain hadn't flamed up over Clark. Get the politics out of the military? It's Clark and Webb who are injecting all the politics into the military right now. Webb is pissing me off. I don't know how McCain can resist taking the bait. Do the Obama people have someone who can be even more annoying than Webb on this subject? They seem to be wheeling out the military men one after the other. Clark didn't do the trick, so up comes Webb. Can they top Webb?

Anyway, Dowd's point is that Obama wants to get us out of Iraq, but he can't even get us out of Vietnam.

ADDED: Instapundit links to this post, calls attention to Obama's "I can’t have fun anymore, it’s not allowed," and quotes Enigmaticore from our comments section:
I still cannot fathom what the thinking is with the Democrats on this one.

It's like they want to have this election fought on questions of character, patriotism, self-sacrifice, and integrity. Oh, and with the attack on McCain for having voted for confirmation of Ginsburg and other liberal judges, of bipartisanship.

This is playing out as if McCain has a mole inside the strategy sessions of the Democrats, guiding them to fight the campaign exactly where their candidate is weakest and their opponent is strongest.

Do they really want people, going into the 4th of July holiday, to be concentrating on the service and sacrifices of John McCain? Really?

70 comments:

Meade said...

"Can they top Webb?"

There's always John Kerry. Reporting for duty.

Middle Class Guy said...

Does this mean we will no longer here about Webb's military service?

knoxwhirled said...

Yeah, McCain's only doing what Kerry did last time around, without the posturing.

SteveR said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Spread Eagle said...

Webb very ostentatiously centerpieced his service and the service of his sons when he ran for the senate in 2006. And now he's telling McCain that he shouldn't mention his?

SteveR said...

Whatever we make of Obama's experience and executive skills, we know his administration will be surrounded by an older and equally egotistical generation of democrats. Will they be willing to stay on his "plan" or will they just launch out on their own? So far it looks like remedial math with a substitute teacher.

Meade said...

"...and oh, yeah, catch that bin Laden fiend who’s running around free."

Weak ending, Mo.

D said...

Vietnam was the defining moment for modern liberalism. They can't let it go because without it they got nothing.

Paul Zrimsek said...

Good thing we chickenhawks didn't run off to fight in Iraq like they wanted us to! It probably would have turned out to be the wrong kind of fighting.

Roger J. said...

This criticism of McCain's service is definitely going to blow up the dems faces--And Webb continues to prove he is a loose cannon on deck. Clark has the kneepads on hoping he is going to get some top post in an Obama administration.
Some really classy guys there.

Quayle said...

In whose unconsidered opinion was Obama *supposed* to be the tonic for the post-60s culture wars? Is this what the upper-west-sliders have been telling themselves?

That fact is that Obama is all 60s redux. He sounds far more like Bob Dylan (Oh, the times they are a changin’) and John Lennon (All we are sayin, is give peace a chance!) than he does Sting (De doo doo doo, De daa daa daa, my innocence will see me through.)

I can’t help but wonder if Obama isn’t caught up in the tide of the 60s generation’s last gasp attempt to, just one more time, recreate and experience the “thrill” they felt marching in the Berkley protest and manning the battle lines in the administration building.

Wow! Wind in your hair change. (And a nation left infected with an autoimmune virus called post-modern moral relativism.)

George said...

"The real Jacksonian in this race is John McCain.

"He is descended from Scots-Irish fighters who settled in Carroll County, Miss. Former Sen. Trent Lott, who once worked as a fundraiser for the University of Mississippi and therefore knew the folkways of elite types in his state very well, once told me that he had relatives who had known McCain's relatives in Mississippi.

"They were fighters," he said, as best I can remember his words. "They would never stop fighting you. Those people would never stop fighting."

"Obama gives the impression, through his demeanor and through his statements on Iraq, that he would never start fighting.

"That appeals enormously to voters in the academia and public-employee enclaves of America, who want to deny honor to our warriors and arrogate it to themselves (think of those bumper stickers that call for spending Pentagon dollars on teachers)."

Michael Barone, April 2

EnigmatiCore said...

I still cannot fathom what the thinking is with the Democrats on this one.

It's like they want to have this election fought on questions of character, patriotism, self-sacrifice, and integrity. Oh, and with the attack on McCain for having voted for confirmation of Ginsburg and other liberal judges, of bipartisanship.

This is playing out as if McCain has a mole inside the strategy sessions of the Democrats, guiding them to fight the campaign exactly where their candidate is weakest and their opponent is strongest.

Do they really want people, going into the 4th of July holiday, to be concentrating on the service and sacrifices of John McCain? Really?

David said...

"Obama wants to get us out of Iraq, but he can't even get us out of Vietnam."

Now that's a great line!

dick said...

Webb is an idiot. This is the man who parked a pair of what were supposedly his son's boots, the son in Iraq, at all his campaign stops and talked about how well he knew the military.

McCain also has a son in Iraq but do you hear him talk about that? McCain is showing the Obama campaign that he has class and they don't.

m00se said...

Obama is depending on his mallebility to tide him over the tightening race as things go forward.

Not unlike the Clintons, he will triangulate on the core issues and "evolve" his message on these key points, in spite of the fact that he pledged not to.

The closer we get to the general election, there will be less which will seperate the 2 candidates on the real issues, and the more people will look to the candidate's personalities and *records* for their choice.

The very fact that so little seperates McCain and Obama in the polls right now shows that people are waiting for a clear choice to open up.

JBlog said...

"Webb very ostentatiously centerpieced his service and the service of his sons when he ran for the senate in 2006. And now he's telling McCain that he shouldn't mention his?"

Yes, but once again the Democrat double standard is in effect -- it's always okay/special/different when they do it.

I'm sure we're just not sophisticated enough to understand the subtle nuances involved here.

Either that or they're completely full of crap.

P. Rich said...

Maybe if Obama got a 'fro? That would be distinguishing, and oh so very 60's.

(Damn. Now I've got that picture in my head.)

P. Rich said...

AA said: "Webb is pissing me off."

+1 Attawoman. Outstanding.

Wonder when Murtha will bumble onto the stage.

dualdiagnosis said...

P. Rich is on to something, maybe they could send out Murtha to accuse McCain of war crimes.

Or Kerry could say McCain fought in the fashion of "Jengis Khan".

Montagne Mointaigne said...

What's pissing me off is that Republican military experience is holy, while Democrats with military experience are fair game. Republicans called Webb a pedophile during his senate campaign. All the Malkins of the world are pounding on Clark and calling him, in essence, a fake general (he was carried out of Vietnam with four bullet holes in him). Clark said no WHEN ASKED DIRECTLY if the experience of getting shot down was a qualification for the presidency.

Can the McCain campaign respond to this question? Is John McCain's experience as a pilot and a POW his qualification for office? AND HOW IS ASKING THAT QUESTION DENIGRATING HIS SERVICE?

garage mahal said...

Montagne
Clark or Webb didn't criticize anyone's military service. At all. It's all about neutering or neutralizing credible military Democrats. The incessant whining from the right and McCain's paper thin skin will be fun to watch though.

Pogo said...

AND HOW IS ASKING THAT QUESTION DENIGRATING HIS SERVICE?
Oooh, all caps!
Must be serious.

The formulation "Being/Getting -Fill In The Blank- is not a qualification for the presidency." is meant as a weasley sort of insult, in which one belittles something in the candidate's past, but deniably so, and implies a connection never made by the candidate at all, so it is also dishonest.

I didn't mean to insult him is the rapid reply, a response at the ready because the speaker instinctively knows the average joe or jane will see it as an insult.

Nelson Mandela? Being a prisoner for a decade is not a qualification for the presidency.
Jim Webb? Fighting in Viet Nam is not a qualification for the vice-presidency.
Alice Sebold? Being raped is not a qualification for writing a novel.
Obama? Being black is not a qualification for the presidency.

It's a shitty thing to say.

AlphaLiberal said...

Webb is right to tell the hyperventilating McCain camp to calm down. They're twisting what Clark actually said and putting words in his mouth.

Wes Clark praised McCain's military service, not attack it. To suggest otherwise is false.

This is the McCain camp playing the victim, clutching their pearls and hoping for sympathetic press coverage. Which they got from the SCLM.

Clark should hang tough and keep pounding the message. McCain is not qualified to be President because he served in uniform and certainly not because he was shot down and held as a POW.

AlphaLiberal said...

Here's a video compilation of the right wing going off the deep end at attacks Wes Clark never made.

It's called manufactured outrage. An alternate reality.

Here is Wes Clark's statement after all the pearl clutching and faux outrage:
""There are many important issues in this Presidential election, clearly one of the most important issues is national security and keeping the American people safe. In my opinion, protecting the American people is the most important duty of our next President. I have made comments in the past about John McCain's service and I want to reiterate them in order be crystal clear. As I have said before I honor John McCain's service as a prisoner of war and a Vietnam Veteran. He was a hero to me and to hundreds of thousands and millions of others in Armed Forces as prisoner of war. I would never dishonor the service of someone who chose to wear the uniform for our nation.

"John McCain is running his campaign on his experience and how his experience would benefit him and our nation as President. That experience shows courage and commitment to our country - but it doesn't include executive experience wrestling with national policy or go-to-war decisions. And in this area his judgment has been flawed - he not only supported going into a war we didn't have to fight in Iraq, but has time and again undervalued other, non-military elements of national power that must be used effectively to protect America But as an American and former military officer I will not back down if I believe someone doesn't have sound judgment when it comes to our nation's most critical issues."

AlphaLiberal said...

Someone said:
"Webb very ostentatiously centerpieced his service and the service of his sons when he ran for the senate in 2006. And now he's telling McCain that he shouldn't mention his?"

Bullshit. Post the text where Webb supposedly says this.

You can't because he never said it.

ricpic said...

While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75 year old Texas rancher, whose hand was caught in a gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually the topic got around to Obama and his bid to be our President.

The old rancher said, "Well, ya know, Obama is a 'post turtle.'"

Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a 'post turtle' was.

The old rancher said, "When you're driving down a country road and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a 'post turtle.'''

The old rancher saw a puzzled look on the doctor's face, so he continued to explain.

"You know he didn't get up there by himself, he doesn't belong up there, he doesn't know what to do while he is up there, and you just wonder what kind of a dumb ass put him up there to begin with."

Dave said...

So, it's okay with our more Leftist posters here is someone would say, "being an affirmative action admit to Harvard Law School and an affirmative action appointment to be chief editor of the Harvard Law Review is experience that qualifies one to be president" right? Especially if it was included in paeans to Obama's good grades in law school and the quality of his notes in the Law Review. (Oops. I forgot. He's evidently the only member of the review never to write a note for it. Well, that's not a qualification to be president, either.) And even more especially if they mention what a fine speaker he is.

Yup. Sure.

And being a "community organizer" is a fine thing, indeed. Almost as dangerous as flying bombing runs through anti-aircraft and missile fire. But it's not an experience that qualifies one to be president. Although, of course, Obama was a *fine* community organizer. Well, except it's pretty difficult to find anything he did that improved the community much.,

Yup. Sure.

Ah, well.

Wounding himself in the ass with shrapnel from his own weaponry made John Kerry a dandy presidential candidate, but five and a half years of imprisonment and torture is not really 'experience' that qualifies one to be president.

Pogo said...

Wes Clark praised McCain's military service, not attack it. To suggest otherwise is false.

I'd love to hear Clark give a eulogy then. With 'praise' like that, who needs enemas?

He comes not to praise McCain, but to bury him.

garage mahal said...

So, it's okay with our more Leftist posters here is someone would say, "being an affirmative action admit to Harvard Law School and an affirmative action appointment to be chief editor of the Harvard Law Review is experience that qualifies one to be president" right?

Except neither is true. So I'd have to say no. McCain on the other hand was last in his class, continually crashed expensive jets, gave military info to the enemy to relieve the pain and see a Soviet doctor, literally hugged his captors and made a propaganda tape.

What was it you were saying? I forgot.

AlphaLiberal said...

Ann Althouse made a mistake to judge Webb's comments based on how Modo, or any other opinion purveyor, distorts them.

Here is what Jim Webb actually said which is not what Ann Althouse and Mo Dowd attribute to him!:

"And John McCain's my long-time friend, if that is one area that I would ask him to calm down on, it`s that, don't be standing up and uttering your political views and implying that all the people in the military support them because they don't, any more than when the Democrats have political issues during the Vietnam War. Let's get the politics out of the military, take care of our military people, or have our political arguments in other areas."

From The Hill.

Pogo said...

gave military info to the enemy to relieve the pain and see a Soviet doctor, literally hugged his captors and made a propaganda tape.

That's just devastating material for Obama, garage.
Seriously.
I hope someone makes a commercial with exactly that phrasing, tying it directly to the folks who favor Obama.

Oh no, Br'er Garage, don't throw me into that briar patch.

John Stodder said...

Who needs to calm down are Clark's defenders. They really think he's getting jobbed by the media and the right wing, who are one and the same according to this cracked worldview. They find it desperately unfair that Clark just answered a question, and that his answer was, in a limited sense, true. Not every Vietnam pilot who became a POW is qualified to be president, therefore the experience is not a qualifier.

What the left is missing, however, is the outrageous subtext of Clark's carefully chosen words. Not the POW part, but the "qualified to be president" part.

There is no standard you can name by which Barack Obama is "qualified to be president." If it's qualifications that will drive this election, it should be a landslide for McCain. And this is well understood by most voters. However, due to other factors, Obama is certainly favored to win, and will win if the qualifications issue can be overcome by other issues that cut more Obama's favor.

But for some unfathomable reason, the Obama campaign thinks their candidate's inexperience can be countered by somehow suggesting that McCain's experience doesn't make him more qualified. So, what Clark and others are trying to do is to minimize McCain's experience, reduce it to almost a matter of good/bad luck that he happened to fall out of the sky and into a NVN prison camp and that's the sum of his entire claim to the presidency. It's a straw man argument, a suggestion that this is the essence of McCain's campaign and the only thing that separates the two candidates in terms of experience. And, basically, that's an insulting position. McCain doesn't shy from his wartime experience, but he isn't basing his campaign on it, nor claiming that this experience is a sufficient qualifier by itself.

To the tin-eared Obama fans, Clark's statement seems reasonable and appropriate. Even more stupidly, they interpret the right's negative reaction as a sign that he should keep it up. But to most people, it came off as churlish, snide and almost farcical in its attempt to level a very unlevel playing field between Obama and McCain. It doesn't help that most people have an instinctive yecch reaction to Gen. Clark. He comes off as creepy and dishonest, regardless of where you stand politically.

Obama can and probably will win this election, but if he does it will be on the issues and on his personality and leadership style, and not because the voters have decided he is more qualified. To use words Obama folks understand, this "qualifications" issue is a distraction from the real issues. Stop distracting yourselves!

John Stodder said...

And John McCain's my long-time friend, if that is one area that I would ask him to calm down on, it`s that, don't be standing up and uttering your political views and implying that all the people in the military support them because they don't...

Now that you've given the context, Webb's statement is still crap.

Like Clark's statement, this is a straw man argument, meant to distort what McCain is actually saying. You can't find a quote anywhere in which McCain claims to speak for "all the people in the military." It's dishonest to claim this is what he's doing.

The dishonesty here is carefully designed to discredit the perspectives McCain's military service does, in fact, give him. He draws upon his lifetime experience in taking the positions he does about Iraq and national security, and that's upsetting to Obama's campaign, obviously, because the perception might be left that Obama's relative lack of experience means his point of view is less valid. So they're trying to neutralize it by suggesting McCain is crazily claiming the entire military supports his views.

Obama needs to be more straightforward. National security is a huge issue in this campaign. Just tell us what you'll do, and why. If your ideas are superior, that will become clear. Don't send a bunch of surrogates out there to tell the voters why they shouldn't listen to your opponent. Tell them why they should listen to you.

Ofc. Krupke said...

All these liberal protests would be more convincing if they hadn't spent the entire last Presidential election cycle telling us that four-month's combat service on a patrol boat was a qualification to be President. Remember "reporting for duty"? "Band of brothers"? "I defended this country as a young man"?

And, seriously, does anyone really think that "riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down" is a fair and complete summary of John McCain's military record?

The fact that it was an answer to a question just means that it is more likely a distillation of Gen. Clark's feelings than the flowery, canned praise he offered McCain elsewhere in the interview.

Pogo said...

No, no John.
Offisah? Ssshhhhh.

Keep it up Webb.
Praise on, Clark. '
Because these are just devastating McCain.
Devastating, I tell ya!

Montagne Mointaigne said...

Nope. Sorry. The issue is whether McCain's experience in Vietnam gives him anything in the way of superior judgment or leadership ability on security issues, which his campaign has repeatedly asserted. Clark-- who wingers happily denigrate even though he is a four star general with a silver star, wounded in combat-- merely made the hideous, unaccountable mistake of speaking his mind on the subject.

We hear about Obama's inexperience and McCain's experience. Well, they are both US Senators. And one of them was right about Iraq at the beginning, and one wasn't. One is right about the strategy going forward and one isn't. Who is which is up to the voter.

Pogo said...

Whew.

Thanks, Montagne.

Montagne Mointaigne said...

Yeah so Pogo, beneath your HI-larious assumption of an early 20th century cartoon character's identity, I detect that you find it absolutely laughable that anyone could believe that hero sailor John Sidney McCain could have the short end of the stick on the Iraq question. Perrrrsonally, I would really prefer if people with unresolved Vietnam vengeance issues were kept away from the high executive. I'd prefer someone, you know, like a clear-headed and practical midwesterner to get us out of this mess. You know, the expensive and strategically useless war we've been fighting longer than world war II while our economic rivals grow and consolidate their power unchallenged. You know, because of the Republican party. Which John Sidney McCain belongs to.

AlphaLiberal said...

Krupke:

That "shot down" line came from the questioner, Bob Schieffer. Kind of blows your line of attack away:

Bob Schieffer: I have to say, Barack Obama has not had any of those experiences either, nor has he ridden in a fighter plane and gotten shot down. I mean-

GENERAL WESLEY CLARK: Well, I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be President.

Larry J said...

Clark mentioned that McCain's experience doesn't qualify him for the presidency. Perhaps. Tell me, anyone please tell me, just what has Obama ever accomplished that even remotely qualifies him to the the Chief Executive and Commander in Chief?

Has he any executive experience of any kind - even if it's being an assistant manager of a fast food joint? Not to my knowledge but maybe I'm wrong.

Has he ever worked in a private company, much less managed one?

I know he was a community activist, reportedly for the vote fraud prone organization ACORN. Just what did he accomplish there?

He was a state senator for several years. What did he accomplish there?

He has been in the US Senate for a few years. What has he accomplished there?

Clark made experience a valid topic for discussion. However, his candidate has almost none.

Pogo said...

a clear-headed and practical midwesterner
So the Hawaiian/Indonesian who schooled in New York and Boston is midwestern?

Heh.
I lived in Philadelphia for awhile, but that don't make me an Easterner. And I've been to Chicago a zillion times. I'm from the Windy City now!
But whatever you say, I bet that tag line will convince millions.
Millions.
Hint: "Have Obama say it like this: Ich bin ein Iowegian."

P.S. I'm glad you find my avatar hilarious. But Pogo's not the LOL type; more wordplay and such. Plus, Pogo is more mid-20th century. Early 20th century would be, say Krazy Kat. Gots to keep the comix straight, doncha know.

Pogo said...

That "shot down" line came from the questioner, Bob Schieffer.

That just goes to show why Wes Clark wasn't ready for the presidency, and how he's hardly ready for prime time.

Media questions always always always get cut. No one ever remembers the question.

S0 the rule is: since the soundbite will excise the original question, answer the question you want to answer.

Like a good trial attoprney, Schieffer fed him a line, and Clark ran with it.
What a moron.
His answer made Clark look like an idiot.


But you keep him up front, ya hear?
He's fookin' brilliant.

EnigmatiCore said...

Whoa, thanks Glenn!

(You still aren't getting my Bud Light.)

Montagne Mointaigne said...

Pogo: Obama has lived in Chicago for 20 years. He married a woman from there, had his kid there. But that don't make him from Chicago?

Where you from? Unless you're Sioux or Shawnee, chances are yer 'murcan and self-defined like the rest of us.

mark said...

Bob Schieffer: I have to say, Barack Obama has not had any of those experiences either, nor has he ridden in a fighter plane and gotten shot down. I mean-

GENERAL WESLEY CLARK: Well, I don't think riding in a fighter plane and getting shot down is a qualification to be President.

It's pretty clear from this exchange that Clark is interrupting Schieffer to underline and highlight that point. That's entirely on his own initiative. The question was ultimately about Obama's experience, and if Clark knew what he was doing, he would've waited for it to be completed and answered with some highlights of Obama's experience. Instead, he clearly wanted to take a jab at McCain.

It's also disingenuous of Obama's supporters to dismiss Clark as nobody associated with the campaign. The only reason he could've been booked on a Sunday show to talk about the political campaign is if they had an indication that he is relatively high on the VP list, or Obama's campaign promoted his appearance in some way. This was clearly calculated to strenghten Obama's credentials before his speech and upcoming July 4th. Instead, it backfired, and continues to sputter like a defective firework rocket.

Montagne Mointaigne said...

Mark, you clearly don't know how the press in a free country works. They can book whoever the hell they want. Plus, hey hey hey, Wesley Clark was a Clintonista and was dissing Obama no more than a month ago. So I'm sure he's reeeeally close to the Obama folks.

Pogo said...

But that don't make him from Chicago?

Well, maybe, but that don't make him a midwesterner by a long shot, though, which was the claim.

Raised in Inodonesia, high-schooled in Hawaii, did college in New York, law schooled in Boston. Politics in Chicago.

Obama a midwesterner?
Ha ha ha.

veni vidi vici said...

"don't be standing up and uttering your political views and implying that all the people in the military support them"

Note the use of "implying". Webb admits that his accusation is BS; McCain didn't, and wouldn't, say that which Webb accuses him of.

And of all the people to carry this particular message to "take politics out of the military", Webb??? Mr. "Boots" Webb from 2006? Puh-leez. Wotta toolbag.

veni vidi vici said...

"We hear about Obama's inexperience and McCain's experience. Well, they are both US Senators."

Yep: McCain's been a US Senator for 10 times longer than Obama. As they say, "I got yer experience right here!"

Experience is a loser for Obama no matter how it's sliced; he needs to get back on the issues/national direction high-horse pronto, but I think the only way he can redirect the discourse back to his strong ground is by getting more specific with what he plans to do. We're passing the time where mere Hopeism/Changeism is enough to hold the press' interest. The press may not be warming to McCain, but in the past week or so I've noticed a definite cooling towards Obama the candidate.

Cedarford said...

P. Rich said...
Maybe if Obama got a 'fro? That would be distinguishing, and oh so very 60's.

(Damn. Now I've got that picture in my head.)


It begs for a Photoshopped 'Fro, along with a McGovern campaign button and a placard saying the '68 Red Protests in Europe were "Right On."

The Che` posters are old hat to his campaign workers.

al fin said...

If Obama had attended kindergarten ROTC both Webb and Clark would be praising Obama's military instincts and training.

Shame on BH Obama, baby senator from Illinois!

franglosaxon said...

John McCain. Even though he was tortured as a POW he still flip flopped on the issue of whether the U.S. should torture (waterboarding is torture). How can you flip flop on that?

I don't trust him, I don't trust his judgment, I don't trust his temperament. His experience of inhuman torture and confinement proves his bravery and toughness. But I don't see what it has to do with being a good president. His policies are the same crap that we've had the past 8 years. He wants to fight in Iraq until there are no more casualties at which point we can stay there forever. He doesn't know how to use a computer. He doesn't talk about health care. He doesn't talk about education. He inspires nobody. Yuck yuck and yuck.

Kansas City said...

Clark is a narcistic self promoter. Webb is possibly the most arrogant and unlikeable major politician I have ever seen.

But is any of this likely to matter at all in the election? The determinative factors are likely to be how each of the candidates acts and events beyond their control. My guess is that sufficient people conclude Obama is not ready to be president for McCain to secure an otherwise highly improbably win.

vnjagvet said...

As a short guy who, in his youth, had a hair trigger temper and a smart mouth, I know what it's like to be called a "banty rooster". This behavior did not serve me well, and with the help of my wife, I was able eventually to do away with that annoying part of my personality.

Wes Clark and Jim Webb,it seems, have never gotten over their napoleonic complexes. Clark pontificates at the drop of the hat and but reveals at best pedestrian ideas. Webb often sounds like a self-righteous jerk with a chip on his shoulder.

McCain is no bargain in the arrogance department, but is a prince compared with these two worthies.

Methadras said...

Pfft... More like the gin and tonic instead.

dick said...

Interesting that all the LLL dems here keep harping on the shot down and POW experience to say that McCain is not experienced enough to be president. They so conveniently disregard the time he was in charge of that big air force unit that was responsible for keeping all the planes flying. That takes executive experience and that is far more than anything Bambi can offer.

AlphaLiberal said...

Leave John McCain alone!

Spread Eagle said...

It's a mystery why Obama would highlight and underscore his own complete lack of bona fides by challenging McCain's bona fides, bona fides well known and basically unassailable. Schtooooopid.

michaelyi said...

When Maureen Dowd includes a reference to former Vice President and US Senator Dan Quayle in her swipe at Senator Barack Obama, Obama's failure to grasp the presidency this November is already sealed.

AlphaLiberal said...

The New York Times' half-assed correction to the false Obama-wouldn't-fist-bump-the-kid line in Mo Dowd's column:

"In describing an encounter between Barack Obama and a schoolboy in Zanesville, Ohio, this column used a campaign pool report. The report said Mr. Obama declined to bump fists with the boy. The campaign now says that the boy was trying to get Mr. Obama to autograph his hand, but the candidate declined, citing the possible reaction of the boy's mother."

The video can be found at ABC News here.

Here's the transcript of this earth-shaking event:

"Child: Can you sign my hand?

Obama: If I start that...plus Mom might not be happy when she comes home. She'll be like, 'what is the dirt on your hand?'...see ya.

Child: Can you sign it in pen so it will come off?"

Facts and video evidence notwithstanding, this tale will become part of the alternate reality of the campaign, shared by the press pool and wingers, alike.

We've seen these myths propagated this way a hundred times.

PatCA said...

It strikes me that Obama is here because of the culture wars and would be our first post-modern president: someone with an air of ironic detachment about being president, diffident and conflicted as a person, cinematic in his vague bright persona. He tosses bits from Spike Lee and Orwell and Mao into his performance as The Candidate. Who is he? Who will be he after he is The Candidate?

Nagarajan said...

Whew,
Guys like AlphaLiberal and Garagemahal are sweating it out to show how "fair" Wes Clark is !!

do these clowns want the public to compare McCain's qualifications with that empty suit ?

Who has been involved in some of the most important pieces of legislation in the last 8 years ? who was involved in the bi-partisan coalition of the gang of 14? who has stood up to his party more often going against his own interests?
who has tried to tackle the toughest problems facing the nation rather than TALKING about it?

Who is the candidate who has been right about Iraq strategy the whole way ? Who is the candidate who holds out hope for a moderate democracy in the heart of the Middle East ?

And these libtards want to talk abt his military service ?? If Obama is not a black man, he would be a nobody.

mschaff said...

The 60's generation can't die off soon enough.

AlphaLiberal said...

Here is a guy who was a POW with John McCain, knew him well, was actually a POW for longer, and wouldn't vote for McCain. In Military.com.

"I furthermore believe that having been a POW is no special qualification for being President of the United States. The two jobs are not the same, and POW experience is not, in my opinion, something I would look for in a presidential candidate.

Most of us who survived that experience are now in our late 60's and 70's. Sadly, we have died and are dying off at a greater rate than our non-POW contemporaries. We experienced injuries and malnutrition that are coming home to roost. So I believe John's age (73) and survival expectation are not good for being elected to serve as our President for 4 or more years. "

But hardly a Swift Boating:
"Senator John Sidney McCain, III is a remarkable man who has made enormous personal achievements. And he is a man that I am proud to call a fellow POW who "Returned With Honor." That's our POW motto. But since many of you keep asking what I think of him, I've decided to write it out. In short, I think John Sidney McCain, III is a good man, but not someone I will vote for in the upcoming election to be our President of the United States."

blake said...

Actually, Iraq will return to being a kite-flying paradise as soon as Obama's elected. The economy will also rebound--oh, the numbers won't change, but they'll be reported as "promising signs" rather than "disturbing trends".

Hush, pretty baby, don't you cry.

The Exalted said...

dowd has no point. she never does, because she is a blithering idiot.

and ann, you should calm down.

Jim C. said...

"This is playing out as if McCain has a mole inside the strategy sessions of the Democrats"

You'd also have to posit there was a mole in Kerry's sessions.

It's just the intelligentsia believing their own hype and carefully reasoned but ultimately wrong conclusions.

As Orwell wrote in "Notes on Nationalism", speaking of the left of his day (and jaw-droppingly similar to today's left), "One has to belong to the intelligentsia to believe things like that. No ordinary man would be such a fool."

Jim C. said...

"The issue is whether McCain's experience in Vietnam gives him anything in the way of superior judgment or leadership ability on security issues, which his campaign has repeatedly asserted."

John McCain was treated barbarically, refused an early release propaganda ploy, then tortured before he signed his "confession".

Obama wants to speak to the enemies of the US without preconditions, but wants to talk tough to his fellow citizens of the opposing political party. His mentor shouted "God damn America!" His ex-terrorist friend Ayers was recently photographed standing on the American flag and has said he wished he had done more violence with the Weathermen.

(And John Kerry freely collaborated with the Communist North Vietnamese.)

Because of McCain's loyalty to the USA compared to Obama (and Kerry), I know he can be trusted to a far greater extent. That's an excellent qualification.

Bernard said...

Thanks, Pogo, for straightening out Montagne on 20th century comic-book history. (I grew up reading your namesake -- "Is knightly work daily, or is it strongly weekly?"). Montagne reminds us of the many gaffes of time and space that BO has committed in this campaign.

But in the end, will McCain supporters make the same mistake that opponents of Reagan made? The press hated Reagan, in part because they felt he could not master detail. When he told stories of the welfare queen in Los Angeles who made $500,000 and owned three Cadillacs, the press fell all over itself to point out that she lived in Chicago, not Los Angeles, it was $350,000, not $500,000, and they were Lincolns, not Cadillacs! What an idiot! But people understood and bought into Reagan's worldview.

In the same way, BO has committed error after error, displaying his unfamiliarity with the country and culture in which he lives. Umm, right... remember all those times Roosevelt called Hitler to chat, and how that helped prevent that nasty war? Remember the stunning newsreels of American soldiers liberating Auschwitz? And recall that cordial tete-a-tete Kennedy and Khrushchev had, and how it defused cold war tensions? "How's it going, Sunshine?" And yet, I sense that people are buying into his worldview. The details don't matter. People like AlphaLib think Iraq is a disaster and Bush is a dictator, and they think BO can drag people into that alternate reality. (I'll hazard a guess that AlphaLib is either too young to remember a real war, or learned nothing from it. And I'll bet a Coke he never lived in a real dictatorship.)

The sad thing is, BO is no Reagan. He is 40% Jimmy Carter and 60% Chauncey Gardner....

Oh, and BO a "midwesterner"? My Dad was a midwesterner. BO and Bill Ayers can sit in Chicago penthouses and plot revolution all day long, but that don't make 'em midwesterners.

BBB