Thursday, September 25, 2008


the daily dish

A reader homes in on what we are learning about John McCain:

I'm poring back in memory, over all the touchstones of McCain's recent public life, and it's all starting to make sense: his "stands" on tobacco litigation, campaign finance, immigration, taxes, even (briefly) torture. All ultimately about a self-dramatist creating a drama at which he is the center.

All failed efforts, but one now sees that success or failure - or principle - was not at all the point, ever. Who cares about those things when you get to be at the center of a great drama?

So now, as with canceling the first night of his own convention (over a storm, incidentally, that inconvenienced no one), he is lurching from one dramatic centerpiece to the next, trying to upset the metrics of this election, trying to recapture that old magic. In a moment when calm is called for, he sets his hair afire.

I know these tendencies a little too well: I'm like McCain in some ways. But that's why I decided I wasn't cut out for electoral politics.

--Andrew Sullivan
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Hero Complex

TPM Reader JB gets it ...

The current stunt is certainly at the top of the list, but I think there is another aspect of his rash decision to suspend the Republican National Convention that has not been commented on enough. It wasn't just that he truncated the convention. It was that his campaign leaked that he might give his acceptance speech by live feed from the disaster zone. As if he, John S. McCain III, somehow had to be there......doing what? Commandeering FEMA? This idea that McCain had to be there in the disaster zone instead of addressing his party in St. Paul is in some ways even more ridiculous than the notion that only he could save the Wall Street bailout and that the only way to do that is to "suspend" his campaign. (Although as you and John Aravosis point out, he has a funny way of suspending his campaign given that he's doing everything he was planning on doing anyway, except debating Obama.)

--Josh Marshall

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