Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Richard Cohen wants John McCain to get off his lawn

When I predicted a revolt of punditocracy against John McCain's dishonorable campaign, I didn't honestly expect Richard F-ing Cohen to be leading the charge:
I am one of the journalists accused over the years of being in the tank for McCain. Guilty. Those doing the accusing usually attributed my feelings to McCain being accessible. This is the journalist-as-puppy school of thought: Give us a treat, and we will leap into a politician's lap.

Not so. What impressed me most about McCain was the effect he had on his audiences, particularly young people. When he talked about service to a cause greater than oneself, he struck a chord. He expressed his message in words, but he packaged it in the McCain story -- that man, beaten to a pulp, who chose honor over freedom. This had nothing to do with access. It had to do with integrity.

McCain has soiled all that. His opportunistic and irresponsible choice of Sarah Palin as his political heir -- the person in whose hands he would leave the country -- is a form of personal treason, a betrayal of all he once stood for. Palin, no matter what her other attributes, is shockingly unprepared to become president. McCain knows that. He means to win, which is all right; he means to win at all costs, which is not.

Ouch. Now, Mickey Kaus thinks that the fact that every member of the press corps and pundit class are convinced that McCain has morphed into a lying sleazeball and besmirched his honor and integrity is... wait for it... GOOD NEWS FOR JOHN MCAIN! I'm with Mr. Sullivan here... what are you supposed to do when the MSM (finally!) calls out a Republican for telling outright falsehoods... ignore it? Talk about loser strategy; Mickey I've got John Kerry on line 2. This is a slam dunk, gift wrapped by McCain and the MSM, and the Obama campaign played it perfectly:

Now, I would agree that Obama shouldn't spend too much time talking about what a lying, liar McCain is... especially when even Fox news(!!!) does it for you... but I thought going after an opponent's perceived strength was the Rovian tactic that all Dems loved to hate?