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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

McCain's Easy Ride

From the TelegraphUK.....

Senator John McCain has been getting an easy ride from the media despite a series of mistakes and confused policy statements by the Republican candidate on the campaign trail, critics claim.

The Arizona senator has regularly muddled the names of countries or the sequence of important overseas events, and has contradicted himself on important issues.

But his blunders have very largely gone unreported by the main US television channels and in leading newspapers, with CBS even facing strong claims that it edited out an incorrect McCain response to a question on Iraq during an interview with its star presenter Katie Couric.

Prominent columnists and bloggers, as well as Democrats, are now asking if Mr McCain's cordial relations with the press - fostered by years of easy access and long press conferences - could make a real difference in his battle for the White House with Senator Barack Obama.

Despite the Republican's warranted complaints that he receives much less coverage his younger rival, who is attempting to become the first black US president, critics argue that Mr McCain is better off with fewer reports, if that means his errors are ignored.

Mr McCain, who is 72 on Aug 29, has yet to make a slip-up on the scale of Gerald Ford's suggestion in 1976 that Poland was not part of the Soviet bloc, or George W Bush's statement in 2000 that Pakistan's Gen Pervez Musharraf was an elected leader. But he has come close.

He has erroneously claimed that Iran was training al-Qaeda in Iraq, and that the "surge" of US troops came before the Sep 2006 Sunni Awakening in Anbar province. He has several times referred to Czechoslovakia, a country that divided into the Czech Republic and Slovakia 15 years ago.

Launching an initiative for the US to be energy-independent called the Lexington Project, named after the town "where Americans asserted their independence", he stumbled over the word Lexington, often saying "Lexeegton".

He also paused for eight seconds when asked whether it was right that medical insurance companies paid for Viagra and not the female contraceptive pill, before giving an evasive answer.

Having promised not to raise taxes in early July, within weeks Mr McCain said that "all options were on the table" for reform of the underfunded Social Security system, the equivalent of National Insurance. By definition that would include increases in income tax.

Frank Rich, the New York Times columnist, wrote that many papers "give him a free pass. Their default cliché is to present him as the Old Faithful everyone already knows".

Josh Marshall, writing on the influential Talking Points Memo blog, said that McCain's mistakes would "for any other politician who didn't have the benefit of years of friendship or acquaintance with many of the reporters covering him... be a major topic of debate in the campaign".

The occasional loose remarks by Mr Obama has in contrast led to a media feeding frenzy, his supporters claim.

Dan Gerstein, a Democrat strategist, said: "If Obama had been making these kinds of mistakes it would have been front page news. It's pretty clear the press is skittish about reporting the age thing, and I think an element of pity comes into play."


Anonymous Anonymous said:

Aw c'mon, whichever you prefer, facts is facts: Obama's been getting so much MORE coverage, all of it positive from the media, that the public is sick of him and it's backfiring.

Since the Saddleback debate where McCain came off so much more confident while Obama sounded like he was writing a paper, they've tried to undermine him.

Obama may have just made a mistake going to an evangelical church: if he did too well there, he'd alienate his core liberals. But at least everyone was polite: if it wre the other way around, McCain in a liberal stronghold with his anti- abortion views, he'd have been booed or worse.

Obama should just move on and learn to prepare his thoughts better when he's not reading from a speech or spouting vague nonsense about Hope and Change. McCain's not a good talker, but knows what he wants.

Pundits are saying Obama's too wishy-washy to hold upto him, so Biden might be better to stand upto McCain and go mano a mano on experience.

Sure, McCain's fuzzy on geography but not on his ideas.

Except on immigration: they've both refused to say exactly what they'd do, having gone forward and backwards trying to please both sides. Someone should pin them down.

August 19, 2008 7:47 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

To claim McCain can't remember names of "exotic" locales doesn't mean his memory's going, because he never knew those places. When he was young, it was all about the Cold War and no one ever thought of those places except as "over there." Partly it's generational, but also that countries have evolved so much, with growing middle classes, economies and comforts for travelers.

Then again -- it's the stupidity of the younger generation whether over geography, history, anything, that seems worse than past generations.

Ask a high school senior to show you where Bulgaria is, Nepal, Croatia or even Bavaria. Then try for Nigeria vs. Tunisia... If I hear one more bimbo claim ignorance about history "because I wasn't even born then," I'll strangle her. It's called education -- even McCain wasn't alive during WWI but he can probably talk about it.

August 19, 2008 7:55 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Whats Home Depot up to these days?

August 19, 2008 7:56 PM  

Blogger Unknown said:

I'll have Home Depot posts coming soon, thanks for asking. Mayor Sam has asked that I expand my horizons a
bit, so I'm trying!
Plus it's fun to argue with Red Spot and the boss!

August 19, 2008 8:06 PM  

Blogger Unknown said:

FYI, I post almost daily updates on the Home Depot battle at http://www.no2homedepot.com

August 19, 2008 8:18 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Joe B, if "expanding your horizons" means your Subject 2 fallback, what's wrong with McCain, try harder.

But maybe you can answer this on your no 1 subject: CityWatch's article about NC's not being able to sue the city says something about how they can join with their local HOA's to do it like that westside group of NIMBYs is on Pico-Olympic, uniting with YOUR group.

How'd that happen, what are details, how can 2 remote areas hook up together on one lawsuit?

August 19, 2008 8:21 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Launching an initiative for the US to be energy-independent called the Lexington Project, named after the town "where Americans asserted their independence", he stumbled over the word Lexington, often saying "Lexeegton".

WELL THAT SEALS IT. McCain is unfit to serve!

August 19, 2008 8:22 PM  

Blogger Unknown said:

8:21 I prefer not to get more off topic from this thread than I am already guilty of. Your question is good. Please contact me through my website with a more detailed
explanation of what you are asking and I will do my best to answer.

August 19, 2008 8:34 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Listen up people!
You are now on notice by Joe Nickel Bag to stay on topic!

August 19, 2008 8:48 PM  

Blogger Red Spot in CD 14 said:

Hey Joe!!

Whats up with the Jack Valenti picture?? I thought the strike was over...

August 19, 2008 8:56 PM  

Blogger Unknown said:

You crack me up Red!

August 19, 2008 8:59 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Joe, Higby's not paying me to create hits so I can ask anything I want -- do you have a link you can quickly post that would explain what CityWatch editor (Draper, isn't it?) is talking about in his "Lawsuits: If the CityAtty Can Sue the Controller, why can't NC's sue the Planning Dept?" d. 8/15 -- ironic referencing Rocky as an example with what's happened since but his point 3 linking the Pico/ Olympic Plan suit to your HD in S-T with no explanation, caught my eye. WHAT is that about?

I already posted one about McCain, although I don't care about it, so cut me some slack here.

August 19, 2008 9:20 PM  

Blogger Unknown said:

Sorry 9:20, I can't produce a link
on your schedule. I haven't even read the story, so you'll have to contact me via the N2HD website and maybe we can discuss this.

August 19, 2008 9:34 PM  

Blogger don quixote said:

Criminee Joe B! this photo is going to give me nightmares tonight.
If he had a Nazi sign on his forehead he'd look like Charlie Manson.
Maybe he's just trying to decide whether his favorite song is Abba's "Dancing Queen" or the uh uh uh Jackson Browne one, uh uh uh what's that song Joe?
(Joe Lieberman whispering)," uh uh uh John, I think it's called "Stranded On A Corner In Winslow Arizona"? uh uh or something about Arizona John"

August 19, 2008 9:49 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


You can't excuse McCain's ignorance about world leaders and the names of countries. He is a sitting U.S. Senator who wants to be president. We should expect that he knows about, studies, and understands world affairs.

He is another George Bush without the loveable personality.

August 19, 2008 9:57 PM  

Blogger Unknown said:

Oddly enough, I was once stranded on a corner in Winslow, Arizona. The ole pick-up had run out of gas, and the girl that was traveling with me wanted to kick my ass.

August 19, 2008 10:12 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I love you Joe

BUT the UK Press very Anti-American
Pro Terroist Anti Semetic, and they are just mad the 'sun HAS set on the British Empire' , and 1984 George Orwellian
tactics ABOUND.

August 20, 2008 12:23 AM  

Blogger don quixote said:

Joe B, You were lucky to have broken down in Winslow Ariz. even though it cost you an ass kicking by your squeeze.
The next shithole town going east down the road on I-40 is where I once broke down in winter (0 degrees), the appropriately named town of Hellbrook, er I mean Holbrook Ariz.
One AM waiting for the Navajo mechanic to leave the local bar so he could change the fanbelt on the truck.
Only the liquor store was open at that time of night, so dinner was reheated Indian fry bread and a shortdog of MD-40 wine in a freeway bag.
McCain country for sure.

August 20, 2008 10:37 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I'm so old that my relatives came from Czechoslavakia and I still refer to that location that way. Now I don't want McCain to be president, however, he's 40 years older than me! If I can make that mistake and still get an A in Geography, I'm going to cut him some slack. I've never read in our family history that someone came from the Czech Republic. So knowing something is a fact and saying something else out of habit isn't so bad. Wait until you all get old. You'll be more forgiving. Just don't try to run for president.

August 20, 2008 2:01 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:


An agressive Russia invades a defenseless Georgia, kills people, takes hostages, and occupies territory.

McCain described it as it was: an invasion. Obama blamed the victim.

Place names may change, but principles don't. Right is right and wrong is wrong. What Russia did was wrong.

God help us all is Obama is president.

August 20, 2008 10:57 PM  

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