Thursday, July 24, 2008

Campaign Trail Follies of 08 (part 2)

The S.S. McCain: One Rapidly Sinking Ship!: You know things aren't going well for John McCain's presidential campaign when the candidate attacks the media for being too biased in favor of the "other guy." In a combination mass email and YouTube video, the McCain campaign declared, "It's pretty obvious that the media has a bizarre fascination with Barack Obama. Some may even say it's a love affair. The media is in love with Barack Obama. If it wasn't so serious, it would be funny." To the tune of the 1960s' hit "Can't Take My Eyes Off You," the video shows images of influential media figures swooning over Senator Barack Obama. Sad. Very sad. These are the tactics of a desperate, go-nowhere campaign. And this isn't the only troubling sign -- not by a long shot. Campaign deserters tell tales of entire communities without any real McCain campaign presence. The refusal by the New York Times to print an op-ed piece by McCain added to his woes. The extensive media coverage of Obama's recent trip overseas also heightened frustrations in the McCain camp. As conservative radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh noted, "My prediction is that the coverage of Obama on this trip will be oriented toward countering the notion he has no idea what he is talking about on foreign policy and defence issues and instead will prop him up as a qualified statesman. McCain, on the other hand, is a known quantity on these issues and his position does not excite nor fit the mainstream media's narrative on Iraq and Afghanistan, so they simply ignore it and him." Then McCain was stung by the news that one of his big donors, Craig Berkman, is being sued in a fraud case and has been ordered to pay $28 million in damages. Arr, me maties! From where I'm standin', the S.S. McCain don't look none too seaworthy!

The Gutter Gazette Strike Again: The National Enquirer is reporting that former North Carolina senator John Edwards "met with his mistress, blonde divorcée Rielle Hunter, at the Beverly Hilton on Monday night, July 21"and left the Hilton (in Beverly Hills, California) in the wee hours of the morning. The Enquirer is insisting that Edwards and Hunter had a "love child" together (what a nasty term). Luckily, the story has failed to get much play in the mainstream media. Edwards, easily the most progressive and humane political leader out there, is now in the midst of trying to launch his own one-man War on Poverty. He is busily touring the country, speaking out for a higher minimum wage, improved medical insurance for the poor and other measures to protect the jobs and livelihoods of ordinary, working-class families. A Rocky Mountain News headline said it all: "John Edwards passion to war against poverty." No other politician is out there fighting the good fight on behalf of the poor as aggressively as Edwards. Unfortunately, the sleazy Enquirer has never given a damn about the plight of the poor in America. All they want to do is destroy good people and good reputations -- as long as it translates into selling copies. Let's hope this story stays in the gutter where it belongs. Edwards, more than anyone else I know, deserves a prominent spot in the new Obama White House.

A Watershed Year for Democrats?: A recent article in the British Guardian quoted New York senator Charles Schumer is predicting several Democratic victories in Red States this fall. So far, poll after poll seems to support this prediction. Local state polls show Obama way out ahead in most races. Nationwide, the numbers tell the same story. An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll says Senator Obama leads Senator McCain by 47 per cent to 41 per cent for the November 4 election. Senator Schumer predicted a watershed for the Democratic Party this fall that may rival that of 1932. He said, "Every generation, generation and a half, there are these dramatic changes, and if they're permanent they are governed by people's relationship to government." In a letter to the Republican leadership earlier this year, Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.) expressed his concerns: "The political atmosphere facing House Republicans this November is the worse since Watergate and is far more toxic than the fall of 2006." But the battle is far from over. The Chicago Tribune's political reporter Matthew Hay Brown's latest Blog entry is appropriately headlined, "Dems: Beware 'Irrational Exuberance.'" Or, as Han Solo told Luke Skywalker, "Don't get cocky kid!"

Give Those Girls a Raise!: Finally, from People magazine comes the news that Obama gives his daughters, Malia (10) and Sasha (7) a $1 a week allowance. $1??? Come on, Senator, you can do better than that. If you win the race for the presidency -- no, no, no... make that, when you win -- in November, you have got to give those girls a raise. According to People, they do a lot of work around the house (and on the campaign trail, too!).

Hello! Reality check! These days, $1 a week just doesn't cut it. In fact, it hasn't cut it since, oh, 1971. Get with the times!

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