Thursday, June 5, 2008

History's Greatest Monster

It's easy to paint John "Bomb Iran" McCain as Bush McSame. In other words, as man running for a third term for the Bush administration. And it's only going to continue because it's a winning strategy - the body public is sick of Bush, disgusted with his policies, and if this election turns into a referendum on his legacy then it's going to go even worse for his Republican enablers than it would if we restricted things to their incredibly unpopular policies. The McSame meme is one that should be pounded into the ground and insinuated into every conversation until it leaks from the mainstream. Because it's attacking McCain's strength. It makes him defend his reputation as a man of honor and courage and, frankly, when he has to fall back on his record it's not a good prospect since decades of opportunism and flip-flopping rise out of the mire of scandal and mediocrity. It's a bitch-slap move that puts him on the defensive and one the judo-master Obama is perfectly suited to attempt because he's insulated himself from negative attacks (Oh, sure, there's going to be bullshit about madrasas and watermelons and oreoes and everything else but that's the same tired right wing noise that's always lurking in the shadows. Born of hate and ignorance. You might see the McCain campaign funding it but you won't hear them repeating it because it's beneath contempt. And the brilliance of Obama is that he's made it beneath him to respond. He's set himself above that sort of petty smear campaign and when his opponents attempt that sort of politicking it only serves to enhance his aura. For every deep in the soul racist who'll be swayed by it there are at least as many who will be swayed against it. Who'll see a campaign of destruction that preys on racial and religious fears as something to recoil in horror from and will pull the lever for Obama because they don't like turning the country over to the alternative. People insulting him becomes motivation for his supporters. Like I said, Obama has raised rhetorical judo to an art form.) so that lets him land devastating blows that no one else could. But, you know, fugly backdrop aside, the Man from the Lobbyist Express did have a point in his speech last night. He's not going to be Bush the 3rd. It's not fair to call him Bush McSame.

Call him BushPlus. Because the thing about John McCain is that while he might differ from Bush in a few areas and he might march in lockstep in just as many others, there are plenty more still where he will take the idiocy and negligence of the Bush administration one step farther. Look at this way, despite the recent reproachment, the Bushies and McCain hate each other. His administration is going to be staffed not by hold-overs and the promising young turks from the current environment but from the right wingers who were too extreme or too incompetent to earn a shot in the past eight years.

That thought keeps me up at night trying to figure out the best way to help Obama get elected, by the way, because the Republicans have managed to steer our ship of state into the rocks (Hi. I'm an angry and frustrated liberal who didn't need to be radicalized by years of watching his country swirl down the drain. I'm so far to the left that I'm warping space time and creating an area of unstable geometry. Have we met? Sure, this is overheated and exaggerated. I'm sure that I could sit down and have a perfectly reasonable conversation of rational debate with at least some conservatives. That they are not, in fact, treacherously unpatriotic and working against everything our great nation stands for. It's just that after Bush, I think the onus is on them to prove it to me first.). And I don't want to give their second and third stringers a chance to drive it even further aground.

McCain is a man, after all, who tells us he knows nothing about economics and then goes on to prove it every time he opens his mouth. That same man who challenged a bunch of American workers to go out and pick produce for a living wage and told them that of course they wouldn't. And who waltzed into Michigan to tell us that our that our jobs were gone and our auto industry was doomed and he didn't care (Which might not be the official transcript but that's the sense I got, at least.). And, oh yeah, thinks a Beach Boy song about starting another war is a rip-snorting joke. That isn't Bush telling his generals that we're kicking ass. That's suicidally stupid.

McCain won't be the same as Bush. He'll be worse. Because the question is just who's going to be help him run the country. And the answer is more Republicans. The same Republicans are out of ideas and determined to remain on the wrong path.

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