Liars Liars

Joe Klein is very observant.

Politics has always been lousy with blather and chicanery. But there are rules and traditions too. In the early weeks of the general-election campaign, a consensus has grown in the political community—a consensus that ranges from practitioners like Karl Rove to commentators like, well, me—that John McCain has allowed his campaign to slip the normal bounds of political propriety. The situation has gotten so intense that we in the media have slipped our normal rules as well. Usually when a candidate tells something less than the truth, we mince words. We use euphemisms like mendacity and inaccuracy…or, as the Associated Press put it, “McCain’s claims skirt facts.” But increasing numbers of otherwise sober observers, even such august institutions as the New York Times editorial board, are calling John McCain a liar. You might well ask, What has McCain done to deserve this? What unwritten rules did he break? Are his transgressions of degree or of kind?

Potpourri
Keith may be sorry that MSNBC brought the Good Doc on board:

“The Rachel Maddow Show” was MSNBC’s top-rated broadcast Tuesday night, unseating Keith Olbermann’s “Countdown” as the network’s top show. Maddow drew 1.8 million total viewers compared to Olbermann’s 1.6 million. Maddow also outdrew Olbermann in the advertiser-friendly 25-54 demographic, taking 25,000 more young adults than her lead-in “Countdown.”

Even Joe Scarborough, who sparred with Ms. Maddow during convention coverage, had terrific things to say about this development.

TV folk are some of the craziest folk I know, as Krusty the Clown might say. But she is a good, good person. We probably don’t agree on anything politically. But she’s respectful of people, and it’s great. File this under, one of those good people doing well.

Which underlines why Maddow is destined for superstardom. She is a scrappy liberal who is so obviously smart, talented, and attractive that she can’t be denied, not even by those who disagree with the progressive world view vehemently. My lady friend swears I have a crush and will give me heck for this entry. But who amongst us doesn’t have a little Rachel crush goin’ on? Who?

Vigilance!

Somebody Hand Me A Shovel

“It wouldn’t be appropriate to have a festive occasion while a near tragedy or a terrible challenge is presented in the form of a national disaster.”

John McWeirdsmile told a reporter today that the Republigoats might suspend their convention in Minneapolis because of Hurricane Gustav.

Bullshit. The millions of dollars to be lost in vendor contracts would render any such decision impossible.

Even if they did, what would it prove? How would it help? It would be a symbolic, cynical, political gesture aimed merely at canceling out the tarmac picture above. And that’s something I just don’t think is possible.

Monica Goodling For President

Where are these profound expressions of surprise coming from?

While John McWeirdsmile’s vice-presidential pick wasn’t what was expected, it’s no surprise, no surprise that a Republigoat would select as the number two executive of the nation an inexperienced noob who nonetheless relentlessly carries water for the party’s Dark Ages world view. Let’s revisit a now infamous American catchphrase and see if it rings any bells with ya.

Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job.

Remember the former Arabian Horsepoop Association guy? Whom The Current President tapped to run FEMA? Failed candidate for Congress (that’s right, Michael Brown ran for Congress once!)? He didn’t know shit about “emergency management,” but he was pals with Joe Allbaugh, so he must have been okay! Even Charles Farthammer had to acknowledge that Brown was “late, slow and in way over his head” regarding Hurricane Katrina. A perfect Republigoat appointment. Perfect.

Remember Monica Goodling? She’s going to be President someday, I swear go God. Goodling was graduated from the prestegious Jesus Christ University of the United States of Jesus Christ Inc. in 1999, and, 47 minutes after receiving her diploma, became White House liasion to the Attorney General! Yay, Jesus! A half-hour later, they gave Monica Goodling the power to hire and fire everyone in the universe! In fact, you probably have been fired by Monica Goodling, and you don’t even know it yet! Yay, Jesus!

The pick of Prudence Palin, two-year governor of one of the the least populated states in the nation, McWeirdsmile’s running mate ain’t a suprise. It’s standard operating procedure for the Republigoats. It’s the Peter Principle on desoxyephedrine. That’s how they roll. Cronies are more hireable than experts, and idealogues are very much more hireable than are…um…experts. This is, no doubt, a superb pick for the Republigoats. Congratulations to (and, happy 107th birthday to) John McWeirdsmile! Yay, Jesus!

(Note to Obama handlers: THIS is the message you need to move. Effectively draw a straight line from the Prudence Palin pick to Bush cronyism and you’ll do just fine. Americans have immunized themselves already to the “experience” argument; it does not pack a punch enough at this point. Tie this pick to Bush cronyism, run some film from the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center circa this time 2005, run “Brownie heck of a job.” This approach kills like seven birds with a single stone. That’s free advice from me to you. My treat.)

The Efficacy of the 'Swift Boat'

It will soon be necessary for the Democrats to adopt a tactic that will look like a ‘swift boat,’ though in this instance it will be warranted and honest.

Because one of John McWeirdsmile’s favoritely touted strengths is actually an issue we should be asking a lot of questions about. This is something that was patently obvious when the man was ran for president in 2000, so obvious that Saturday Night Live addressed it in jest at the time. Now, however, the subject has taken on an air of taboo, at a moment when it is absolutely critical that we seek some answers.

That is, how was Presumptive Presidential Nominee John McWeirdsmile affected by having been a Prisoner of War?

It is a legitimate question to be asked about a man who wants us to allow him civilian control of our armed forces, especially of a man who chronically draws upon this experience as a way to shame any who deigns to ask him a legitimate question. Did 5 years plus in captivity affect the candidate’s faculties? His morality? His temprament? Does he have PTSD? Do loud noises make him jumpy? How many times a month does he wake up soaked in his own cold sweat and panting? Is he still angry at his captors?

As sensitive as it might seem, it’s a necessary question. This man might be President of these Untied States, and at a formative age, he spent five years in a tiger cage. And he will not allow us to forget this about him. Jay Leno didn’t get to follow up on this question, he was too busy being shamed by a heavy-handed McWeirdsmile. But somebody’s got to be allowed to follow up with “Yeah, and didn’t that make you a little nutso, John? Don’t you think a former POW might be too crazy to be President?”

There are other related questions, too, that have yet to be raised in the yellow-stream media. Like, what is up with McCain’s (and, for that matter John Kerry’s) weird stance on POW-MIA issues? This fellow, who wears a T-shirt under his vest that reads “Kiss Me, I’m A Former POW,” has worked tirelessly to keep any information he could regarding POWs under lock and key. Again, I’m not putting stock into “Manchurian Candidate” theories or stories that had McCain snuck out of his tiger cage to spend a year or two on the Riviera. But doesn’t his record on POW/MIA issues seem somewhat counterintuitive? Should not the yellow-stream press be asking about it, especially considering the high-handed way the candidate chronically insists on exploiting his former status as a POW?

And should we not consider when we bow to McWeirdsmile’s “I Was A POW So Therefore I Can Do And Say Anything And Shame On You Asshole” gambit that he’s not talking about World War II, that he’s talking about the Vietnam War, a historically sullied conflict that ended when the Untied States withdrew in disgrace? A war that was advanced largely upon the foolish, disproven “domino theory,” a theory that nonetheless continues to compel U.S. foreign policy to this very day? Do we need to use McWeirdsmile’s propensity to show us his POW ass every time he’s challenged to remind ourselves of the needless, foolish nature of the Vietnam War?

John McWeirdsmile is essentially begging for a legitimate, well-funded, and credible third-party group to reasonably question his war record in public. His chronic insistence on using his former POW status to shame any legitimate challenger provides a vastly more legitimate justification to question the man’s record than Jerry Corsi and his thugs had four years ago. Where are our “swift boaters?” America really needs them right now.

John McWeirdsmile is a Disingenuous Asshole

Sometimes you type something, and it just screams out at you that you should use it as a title for your next blog entry. Sometimes, it’s so damned good you just have to use it to create a new category for your blog. Thus it was in comments further down with Papa.

Because John McWeirdsmile is a disingenuous asshole. There really is no other way to say it.

This YouTube post sums it up really nicely. (Via Top Shelf Dogfood via Fark.)