Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Big Mac is Back!

I know this has been a left-leaning blog. A lot of that has to do with my political tranformation over the past few years. But, I still believe in some of the positions to the right (free markets, free trade, Federalism [states rights], and limits on affirmative action).

Crazy or not, we must give John McCain some credit for his comeback. This guy was all but dead a few weeks ago. But, I guess he knows that feeling, because the guy survived 5 1/2 years in a POW camp in Vietnam. In case you wonder why his face is all screwed up and why his arms move in a funny fashion, its because of all the torture (both his shoulders were broken in the camp). He can't even comb his own hair because he can't pick up his arms more than about 80 degrees from his side.

He used to ride on the "Straight Talk Express" back in 2000...a campaign bus filled with staff. As of 6 months ago, he was so low on money, he was traveling by coach bus with 2 campaign aides. It was a huge fall from grace. He only had about $1-2 million dollars left for his campaign as of December.

Plus, I must give McCain credit for being such a good sport after what happened to him in 2000. For those of you that don't remember, Bush and Karl Rove ran a terrible smear campaign against McCain after he won New Hampshire. Here's what happened:

John and his wife, Cindy, have an adopted daughter named Bridget. Cindy found Bridget at Mother Theresa's orphanage in Bangladesh, brought her to the United States for medical treatment, and the family ultimately adopted her. Bridget has dark skin.

Anonymous opponents (e.g., George W. Bush) used "push polling" to suggest that McCain's Bangladeshi born daughter was his own, illegitimate black child. In push polling, a voter gets a call, ostensibly from a polling company, asking which candidate the voter supports. In this case, if the "pollster" determined that the person was a McCain supporter, he made statements designed to create doubt about the senator.T hus, the "pollsters" asked McCain supporters if they would be more or less likely to vote for McCain if they knew he had fathered an illegitimate child who was black. In the conservative, race-conscious South, that's not a minor charge. We had no idea who made the phone calls, who paid for them, or how many calls were made. It was effective and anonymous: the perfect smear campaign. Bush ended up winning 53-42% and of course, won the nomination and then the general election to become the WORST president ever.

Big Mac, welcome back. Let's hope you make it through South Carolina without an underhanded move like back in 2000!


Will said...

McCain is an admirable guy. I hope he'll consider taking a cabinet position.

The push-polling story is incredible. I find it hard to believe that people who (a) talk to cold callers and (b) believe wild scandalous stories are actually voting in primaries, considering only 37% of eligible voters come out for the real thing. But perhaps the fear of having a black baby's father in the white house brought out the vote...that was a joke by the way. How about Bush and his whole clan ruled the evangelical south from day 1 and no outsider stood a chance?

Will said...

Steve -- I hope you're watching John Stewart riff on how off the pundits were w/ New Hampshire. the montages of loud, proud and wrong predictions are awesome. He completely mauled chris mathews who went on some bizarre lawrence of arabia extended metaphor that went on about 90 seconds too long.