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Ad Wars: Is 'Celebrity' The New 'Flip-Flop'?

By Ed O'Keefe

It has become increasingly clear over the past week that "celebrity" is the label that Republicans think will stick to Barack Obama.

The McCain campaign released a new ad called "Family" this morning to strenghten the connection:



"Is the biggest celebrity in the world ready to help your family?" the ad asks. "The real Obama promises higher taxes, more government spending. So, fewer jobs."

"Renewable energy to transform our economy, create jobs and energy independence, that's John McCain."

Let there be no doubt: Republicans have adopted "celebrity" just as they associated "flip-flop" with John Kerry in 2004. This makes perfect sense considering the success of the "Celeb" ad: It has been watched more than 1.6 million times on YouTube and replayed constantly on network and cable news shows. Another mention of it in reference to this new ad will lead to a whole new round of free air time, further driving the term into the minds of voters.

"Another day brings another dishonest attack from John McCain," says Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton. "While Senator McCain knows that Senator Obama has proposed cutting taxes for 95% of American families, what he's not telling us is that he wants to give $4 billion in tax breaks to the oil companies, continue giving tax breaks to corporations that ship our job overseas, and provide no direct tax relief for more than 100 million middle-class families."

As The Fix has said before, campaigns are largely about the battle to create a narrative for voters, "a compelling, positive storyline for yourself ... a less appealing one about your opponent." It will be interesting to see if the Obama campaign takes steps to dim the "celebrity" spotlight and if events -- like Obama's planned acceptance of the Democratic nomination in a stadium setting at the 76,000-seat Invesco Field in Denver -- help the GOP's tag take hold.

Also on the 'Tube

Today's McCain ad comes on the heels of yesterday's "Broken," in which he signals a return to his "maverick" roots, and attempts to further distance the himself from the current administration:

Two things stand out:

1. The ad states that "We're worse off than we were four years ago," taking a political barometer first used by Ronald Reagan and turning it against President Bush. Republicans have struggled with how to position McCain in relation to the president -- this ad looks like they're leaning toward more distance. But Democrats have seized on this part of the ad, noting that McCain has thought differently about American progress in the past.

"Senator McCain wants Americans to forget that during the Republican primary, he said that Americans were better off than we were eight years ago, and that he thinks we've made 'great progress economically,'" says Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton. "He wants us to forget that he's fully embraced the Bush policies he once opposed, and bragged about supporting those policies 'more than 90 percent of time.'"

Indeed this new Obama campaign ad uses the Fox News clip of McCain citing the "90 percent" statistic:

"The 'Original Maverick'? Or just more of the same?" the ad asks.

2. The McCain message also states that "Only McCain has taken on big tobacco, drug companies, fought corruption in both parties. He'll reform Wall Street, battle Big Oil, make America prosper again." Critics will argue he's not the "only" politician to do this and that he's faced scandal during his Senate tenure.

Mentioning the fight against big industry however brings to mind his "straight talk/maverick" past -- something that will bring relief to concerned Republicans, "McCainocrats" and independent voters eager for a reason to embrace him again. The message concludes that "He's the original maverick," an explicit reminder of the McCain many voters fondly recall. As for the Democratic response, see the ad above.

3. Amid five recently released attack/contrast ads, "Broken" is McCain's first "positive" TV spot in awhile. These new messages and GOP tactics of the past few days (I got my tire gague in the mail, did you?) may signal a shift in McCain's strategy. Let's see if it works in his favor.

By Ed O'Keefe  |  August 6, 2008; 2:50 PM ET
Categories:  Ad Wars  
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Comments

Posted by: bankrupt credit | August 14, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Given the ads that McCain has recently blessed, guess we won't be hearing further about his prior claim to superior "gravitas" (seriousness or what the Brits call "bottom").

Posted by: First Mouse | August 11, 2008 8:19 AM | Report abuse

Aside from his bizarre ideology, voting record, and advanced age, McCain also has no ideas, solutions or issues upon which to run. Therefore, his campaign will continue to adhere to the Seinfeld Show philosophy and be about nothing. His strategy is to bamboozle the public and run out the clock with the assistance of various compliant mainstream media celebrities.

Posted by: maxfli | August 8, 2008 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Paul Begala suggests that Obama "Use a little creativity" and humor in his ads. "Why not say 'If flip-flopping were an Olympic sport, John McCain would be the first 72-year-old to win a gold medal'?"

Tastes differ. Another preference: the Lincolnesque down-to-earthiness that sometimes eventuates in mild Obama self-deprecation, but always toys playfully with Grumps McCain of the McCain-Bush-Cheney team.

Posted by: FirstMouse | August 8, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Just what behavior earns someone the title of maverick, anyway? Behavior that is

erratic?

capricious?

inconsistent?

fitful?

unreliable?

unstable?

Behavior that is undergoing a radical cosmetic makeover for a presidential campaign?


Posted by: 2mature2bhornswoggled | August 8, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Sen.McCain's memory deficit has very widely been commented on by a great number of people,this problem is likely to worsen with time.In view of the fact that he is running for the most powerful office;shoudn't a group of highly qualified professionals who diagnose,treat or do research patients suffering from dementia, be asked to give an opinion in regard to Sen. McCain's mental state? I sincerely believe that American people deserve to know.

Posted by: mcg026 | August 8, 2008 2:23 AM | Report abuse

So what if Sen. Obama is popular abroad? If Americans choose Sen. Obama because he is popular abroad, would we get more money, or gain somehow, other than foreigners adoring us? I don't think so! Therefore, choosing Sen. Obama based on his popularity abroad is naive because we stand to gain nothing.

BTW, Sen. Obama is popular abroad because foreigners think Sen. Obama would give them American money and jobs and make Americans their slaves. That's right! They like him only because he serves them. Nothing else.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 8, 2008 12:57 AM | Report abuse

McCain is green with jealously so his team has decided to turn Obama's popularity into something bad.. Obama's popularity is not a bad thing it's a good thing for America. America's reputation has been severly damaged around the world with the likes of Bush and will be further damaged if "bomb,bomb,bomb Iran" is elected. The world awaits someone who is not trigger happy and trying to live out his bombing days that were cut short when he was shot down. McCain has been rewarded for his time in the military with a Senate seat.. his time has passed to be President..he is too forgetful and America cannot send another fumbling bumbling idiot around the word as her President.

Posted by: lg | August 7, 2008 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Anonymous wrote: Obama is a pimpster. He is scheming and exploiting innocent people who want to jump on his bandwagon in order to feel important about themselves (I am talking about the kind of thing that happens in high school; the nerds try to be friends with the popular kids, so the nerds can feel important about themselves.).

Also, he is exploiting white people who feel they owe it to the black man because of religious reasons and because whites enslaved the black man. To draw sympathy from these kinds of people, Sen. Obama keeps on mentioning that he is black and he is being attacked because he is black.

BTW, Obama is such a smooth pimpster, he could teach Don Magic Juan (the Chicago pimp) a trick or two.
===================================================================
What an AH you are. You are filled with the same deceptive rhetoric as the McCain team. Lie and hope that the lies stick and some poor fool believes them. You are doing a disservice to yourself and to the voting public by perpetrating these lies. From the sound of your message you probably were one of those nerds that got"pimped" because in most cases you have to be it to see it. Are else you were the one doing the exploiting..In either case your behavior was wrong then and it is wrong now.

Posted by: lg. | August 7, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

In a celebrity-fixated culture can the Republicans make celebrity a dirty word?

Flip-flop never possessed positive connotations, and liberal was already tarnished by its association with the policies blamed for the economic and social malaise of the late seventies and early eighties, but celebrity is what it is. Celebrity is tied at the hip with scandal, and it is still an overwhelmingly positive term. Maybe the Republicans are finally waking up to the real evil of Reagan and Schwarzenegger and are just trying to put them in their rightful places.

Posted by: muD | August 7, 2008 2:29 PM | Report abuse

How's this for a narrative?

Johnny "Skywalker" McSame, son and grandson of Admirals (lots to live up to there!) grows up as callow youth in militarist family. Skywalker McSame follows into the paternal family business...killing our enemies and careerism.

Callow youth gets into USNA on his family connections over more qualified nobodies. Skywalker makes it through....barely..graduating virtually at the bottom of his class. Lots of beer drinking and "tailhooking".

War comes! Yeaah! Chance to make rank!!

Top Gun Skywalker flies high and fast in his silver space ship dropping bombs on cities and rice paddies! Kill the commie gooks!

Oops!! Primitive 3rd worlders shoot down our hero!! Treat him like the dirt bag he is.....they didn't kill him...which is more than he would have done for them.

Our hero comes home!! Gets warm welcome (more than the rest of those GIs got)!

Skywalker dumps first wife who has waited for his sorry ass for 5+ years. She has a limp now from an auto accident....not the hottie she used to be.

Skywalker marries tall svelte blond beer heiress rich girl...more in keeping with his status as Skywalker "hero"!

Now 70...what as our hero learned?

Nothing. Still mouths the empty banalities of a militarist...."victory", "honor", "glory", "patriotism"...

Meanwhile in Washington we have built a black wall where we of course "honor" 58,000+ souls.

Today I look at the numerous American companies manufacturing in Vietnam, taking advantage of that cheap labor and the lack of labor unions. Cheaper than China!!

Three and a half years ago I bought a bedroom set at a well known furniture outlet. Recently I had a reason to move it. Marked on the back ... "Made in Vietnam".

Those 58,000 souls died for nothing.

Still Skywalker and old Vets like him (who still live by the way)spout "bring the troops home with honor". Heard it before? Nixon perhaps? Usually means someone else's kid will have to die for an empty slogan.

Kids used to be drafted off the streets, trained for 3 or 4 months and sent to a jungle to "fight commies".

Too many of them died too far away from home for far too little. There is no "honor" in that.

Skywalker has learned nothing in 70 years. He's a cranky old guy who gets people killed with his policies. All he needs is the funny vet hat.

P.S. I served, 11/63 - 11/67, as did my brother.

Posted by: toritto | August 7, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Weak attack--especially from McCain. He LOVES the celebrity world, and he's obviously jealous that Obama is more popular than he is!

Along with the Wedding Crashers and 24, another of his many, many IMDB credits is for co-writing "Democrazy" for the 2007 Venice Biennale with the celebrity artist Francesco Vezzoli. In it, they do a fake presidential commercial for Sharon Stone.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2007/jun/09/artnews.art

What's it about? "The work is about manipulation, about packaging; and, in its barefaced used of celebrity, said Vezzoli: 'I am declaring my weaknesses. I am fascinated by celebrity culture, and repelled at the same time.'"

And McCain helped him write it! Hey, maybe the Venice art festival is where McCain picked up his $500 Ferragamos!

Posted by: jackalope | August 7, 2008 11:47 AM | Report abuse

You frequently hear Obama make reference to "Factcheck.org"

You never hear Mccain make such a reference since it seems after a closer look, about 8 of every 10 things he says are just lies. So much to the "Straight Talk Express". More like the "Straight Bullsh*t Express" if it comes out of John Mccains mouth. Put Factcheck.org in your favorites and check what these people say, Don't just be mindless fools.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 2:59 AM | Report abuse

http://www.factcheck.org/
---------------------


SEN. OBAMA ADS ARE DECPTIVE.

Sen. Obama ad suggests that Sen. McCain is giving tax cut to only oil companies and companies shipping jobs overseas. However, the Fact is Sen. McCain is proposing tax cut for all American companies.

Also, one of Sen. Obama ad suggests that Sen. McCain is in the pocket of Oil companies. In FACT, Sen. Obama voted for Dick Chaney and Pres. Bush tax cut bill for oil companies, while Sen. McCain did not vote for this bill.

The pimpster(Sen. Obama)chameleon act and wrong energy proposal are not working. Now, he is putting out deceptive ads to fool the American people.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 2:01 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 2:14 AM | Report abuse

SEN. OBAMA ADS ARE DECPTIVE.

Sen. Obama ad suggests that Sen. McCain is giving tax cut to only oil companies and companies shipping jobs overseas. However, the Fact is Sen. McCain is proposing tax cut for all American companies.

Also, one of Sen. Obama ad suggests that Sen. McCain is in the pocket of Oil companies. In FACT, Sen. Obama voted for Dick Chaney and Pres. Bush tax cut bill for oil companies, while Sen. McCain did not vote for this bill.

The pimpster(Sen. Obama)chameleon act and wrong energy proposal are not working. Now, he is putting out deceptive ads to fool the American people.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 2:01 AM | Report abuse

In reality he hasn't dropped one point. In fact on paper he has already won. You know when they say something like 6 points, you know what that means? In an election that is a landslide.

--------
Oh well at the rate Democrat Liberal Loser
The Messiah Barack Hussein Obama is dropping in the polls,by Election Day there
will only be John McCain and Paris Hilton
left in the race! Face it Barack Obama &
Michelle Obama already implode the Obama
Presidential Campaign beyond repair! So
just Vote NO Barack Hussein Obama 2008!

Posted by: Claudine 1000 | August 7, 2008 1:09 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 1:16 AM | Report abuse

In reality he hasn't dropped one point. In fact on paper he has already won. You know when they say something like 6 points, you know what that means? In an election that is a landslide.

--------
Oh well at the rate Democrat Liberal Loser
The Messiah Barack Hussein Obama is dropping in the polls,by Election Day there
will only be John McCain and Paris Hilton
left in the race! Face it Barack Obama &
Michelle Obama already implode the Obama
Presidential Campaign beyond repair! So
just Vote NO Barack Hussein Obama 2008!

Posted by: Claudine 1000 | August 7, 2008 1:09 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 1:14 AM | Report abuse

Mccain may regret this thing with Hilton. The ones who made it are the same people who did "Talladega Nights "and the new movie "Step Brothers". They have a website and said they will be doing a lot more and they seem to know how to do it pretty well. Hilton may be a trivial person, but in pop culture world Mccain is out classed by her. She could actually make him look ridiculous and easily drain votes away from him. After his visit to Sturgis he was so bad he lost votes there and in an election as close as this might be you can't afford to lose one vote. Things like the "Hilton effect" could make a difference. She already has him portrayed as the Crypt Keeper, a walking talking corpse with it's flesh falling off it's bones. I think most hep viewers got it even if the Mccain people didn't. They tore into him pretty good and I think this is just the beginning. At least finally someone is talking about his age.

=========
McCain is going to have his hands full after labor day. Remember in the fall of '07 when there was alot of talk of the bloom coming off Obama. He saves his best for the regular season and when voters are really making up their minds. How much money is McCain going to have after his spending these past two months and the controversey over some donations? If the media ever wakes up and realizes that just because someone said something it is not news the McCain videos will also lack impact. Also, I'm not so sure that the polls are accurate right now as I wonder how many college kids are living at home and not being polled. Last, wait for the debates- look for alot of 1960 analogies and the images the candidates portray.

Posted by: elmo fan | August 7, 2008 12:54 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 1:10 AM | Report abuse

Oh well at the rate Democrat Liberal Loser
The Messiah Barack Hussein Obama is dropping in the polls,by Election Day there
will only be John McCain and Paris Hilton
left in the race! Face it Barack Obama &
Michelle Obama already implode the Obama
Presidential Campaign beyond repair! So
just Vote NO Barack Hussein Obama 2008!

Posted by: Claudine 1000 | August 7, 2008 1:09 AM | Report abuse

I am sorry in school all the smart kids made you feel inferior, it may be a basis of your bigotry.
The fact is, Obama has never played the racial sympathy card and believe me he could have.


Now, race has never been an issue, That is why Obama has had a special secret service detail since he began to run. He has had death threats. His campaign offices have had numerous bomb threats. White workers have quit because of being threatened, they were afraid and were being called NI&&ER LOVERS; as they tried to work, His phone workers get "I will never vote for a ni&&er" and hang up. People with cars that have Obama stickers on them have been vandalized and many obama people (Including me) won't even put a sticker on their cars. No race has never been a part of this election. And you know the best part? Almost none of this has been made public at the request of Obama. No nothing about this is about race. WAKE UP.

----------------

Obama is a pimpster. He is scheming and exploiting innocent people who want to jump on his bandwagon in order to feel important about themselves (I am talking about the kind of thing that happens in high school; the nerds try to be friends with the popular kids, so the nerds can feel important about themselves.).

Also, he is exploiting white people who feel they owe it to the black man because of religious reasons and because whites enslaved the black man. To draw sympathy from these kinds of people, Sen. Obama keeps on mentioning that he is black and he is being attacked because he is black.

BTW, Obama is such a smooth pimpster, he could teach Don Magic Juan (the Chicago pimp) a trick or two.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 12:38 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 12:55 AM | Report abuse

McCain is going to have his hands full after labor day. Remember in the fall of '07 when there was alot of talk of the bloom coming off Obama. He saves his best for the regular season and when voters are really making up their minds. How much money is McCain going to have after his spending these past two months and the controversey over some donations? If the media ever wakes up and realizes that just because someone said something it is not news the McCain videos will also lack impact. Also, I'm not so sure that the polls are accurate right now as I wonder how many college kids are living at home and not being polled. Last, wait for the debates- look for alot of 1960 analogies and the images the candidates portray.

Posted by: elmo fan | August 7, 2008 12:54 AM | Report abuse

The fact is, Obama has never played the racial sympathy card and believe me he could have.


Obama has had a special secret service detail since he began to run. He has had death threats. His campaign offices have had numerous bomb threats. White workers have quit because of being threatened, they were afraid and were being called NI&&ER LOVERS; as they tried to work, His phone workers get "I will never vote for a ni&&er" and hang up. People with cars that have Obama stickers on them have been vandalized and many obama people (Including me) won't even put a sticker on their cars. No race has never been a part of this election. And you know the best part? Almost none of this has been made public at the request of Obama. No nothing about this is about race.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 12:52 AM | Report abuse

Obama is a pimpster. He is scheming and exploiting innocent people who want to jump on his bandwagon in order to feel important about themselves (I am talking about the kind of thing that happens in high school; the nerds try to be friends with the popular kids, so the nerds can feel important about themselves.).

Also, he is exploiting white people who feel they owe it to the black man because of religious reasons and because whites enslaved the black man. To draw sympathy from these kinds of people, Sen. Obama keeps on mentioning that he is black and he is being attacked because he is black.

BTW, Obama is such a smooth pimpster, he could teach Don Magic Juan (the Chicago pimp) a trick or two.

Posted by: Anonymous | August 7, 2008 12:38 AM | Report abuse


Here is that Sturgis clip.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sK-LEyyf7d4

Posted by: Anonymous | August 6, 2008 11:38 PM | Report abuse

Mccain is so out of it they said they thought the Hilton ad was good. Obviously they either didn't really watch to or most likely didn't get it. Being compared to the Crypt Keeper, who is a walking talking corpse whose flesh is falling from his bones, was not meant to be a complement. By the way, how about his trip to Sturgis? He wants to enter his wife in a topless beauty contest where one of the events is simulating sex acts with a banana. Does this guy ever get anything? They were shouting at his wife, "Take off your top" over and over. You can actually hear it in the youtube clip and see her reaction to it. Mccain could not even form a sentence after that.

----------
Now that my attacks on my opponent's celebrity status have garnered so much attention, I am preparing some that attack him for being young, intelligent, and virile, and a refreshing change of pace. Who wants to vote for someone like that?

Posted by: McSame | August 6, 2008 4:20 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | August 6, 2008 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Jake D says "McCain is definitely not as pro-life as I would like, but given the one last seat we need on the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade, I would take my chances with McCain nominating another Roberts (50-50, I'd guess) rather than Obama (ZERO % chance). I was going to vote for Chuck Baldwin, but if it's close in California, by some unforeseen calamity befalling The One, I would definitely vote for McCain."
***************************************
Spoken like a 20th Century Pig, Jake! Why don't you just stay home on election day. Have any daughters? Have you ever seen the results of a "back alley abortion?" Look it up - that's what you'll get if they overturn Roe V Wade.
And if you're so "pro-life" - can we stop killing actual people in Iraq? Or perhaps feed them after natural disasters? The real living people? SHEESH!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 6, 2008 11:05 PM | Report abuse

The McCain camp seems to assume enough Americans are sufficiently stupid to be duped by such inane ads. McCain increasingly acts as, if elected, his administration would be essentially a third Bush-Cheney term.

Posted by: Independent | August 6, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

DAWD, the historical perspective is a little tricky because there wasn't electronic media at the founding of the republic.

Some of the attacks that the GOP state parties have circulated -- and the GOP media channels Fox News/Limbaugh/etc have run -- have been pretty much on par with the kind of standard issue dirty slander and libel of past elections (yeah, I know a different defamation standard applies to public figures).

Muslim madrassas? Tenuous guilt by association attacks? Some soft-appeals to racial prejudice. It's all been part of this election cycle.

TV and radio ads can be pretty nasty, but there are still limits. The charges leveled in an ad don't need to be true -- just not so offensive in terms of the graphic content that a media is unwilling to run the advertisement.

Having said that my expectation is that the Fall campaign will get pretty McNasty. This is after all just August -- most people still aren't paying attention. And these are after all Bush Republicans that are running the McCain campaign.

Posted by: JP2 | August 6, 2008 9:52 PM | Report abuse

I loved the "celebrity" ad. It will go down as one of the greatest political ads of all time. The same as the nuclear bomb going off behind a little girl counting sunflower petals ---- and the red telephone ad, "When the phone rings at 3:00 a.m. ----"

Brilliant!

Posted by: Lucy | August 6, 2008 9:29 PM | Report abuse

Desperate times call for sad, sad measures.

Posted by: Aleks | August 6, 2008 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Is that what happened to "premier"?

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Anonymous | August 6, 2008 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Hi, Dianne72, have you been able to post on The Trail yet? I can't get the Comment Box to come up there. Some technical difficulties over here too.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 8:29 PM | Report abuse

I think John McCain will benefit from Michelle Shaniqua Obama's "whitey" tape due for release in October. Undoubtedly it will show her ranting from the pulpit of Trinity Church punctuating each rant with a fist bump.

I am so glad to be back!

Posted by: Dianne72 | August 6, 2008 8:15 PM | Report abuse

Hello? (TAP, TAP) Is this thing on?

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 8:06 PM | Report abuse

testuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu
lllllllllllllllllll

Posted by: xxxxxxxx | August 6, 2008 8:05 PM | Report abuse

test

Posted by: xxxxxxxx | August 6, 2008 8:04 PM | Report abuse

For the record, I was not the one who brought up the "Obama is Anti-Christ" meme either.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:55 PM | Report abuse

DDAWD:

Good point.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:53 PM | Report abuse

"I've studies political campaigns going back to Adams vs. Jefferson, so I know how bad they can get -- that ad was nothing by comparison."

Yeah, as much as people talk about how negative these ads are, its really nothing more than a bit snarky. This is not even close to Swift Boating. I think the problem isn't so much that McCain's ads are negative, its just that they seem so superficial.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 6, 2008 7:47 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Keating:

I was simply asking you a question, based on YOUR post pushing the "Bush is the Anti-Christ" meme -- did you not understand the question -- if you did, you are under no obligation to answer, of course.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:41 PM | Report abuse

JakeD,
The fact that you're on here trying to puch the "Obama is the anti-Christ" meme tels me that you are not a christian and more than likely you're probably just another memeber of the same group of crazy wingnuts who send out the bogus mass e-mails (that no one in their right mind believes anyway) accusing Obama of everthing under the son.

Swiftboating won't work for you clowns this time, period, end of story.

Posted by: Charles Keating | August 6, 2008 7:33 PM | Report abuse

McCain forgets that Americans are not afraid of celebrity as much as they are afraid of senility

Posted by: nclwtk | August 6, 2008 7:32 PM | Report abuse

Can any of you post comments over on The Trail? It seems real S L O W right now.

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/08/06/interactivity_and_the_presiden.html#comments

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Keating:

How exactly does someone praying to the one, true God prove that George W. Bush is the Anti-Christ?! I would think the Anti-Christ "prays" to Satan instead.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

We already have an "anti-Christ", he's sitting in the White House right now and he says that he doesn't make any of the "important decisions" until after he prays to his god.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EGRYPYuFZLk

Posted by: Charles Keating | August 6, 2008 7:17 PM | Report abuse

Apology accepted ; )

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:16 PM | Report abuse

studies = studied American

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Oh, I thought the question was whether I found it MORE THAN "a little disgusting" -- I've studies political campaigns going back to Adams vs. Jefferson, so I know how bad they can get -- that ad was nothing by comparison. It is also possible that Obama IS the Anti-Christ, too.

McCain is definitely not as pro-life as I would like, but given the one last seat we need on the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade, I would take my chances with McCain nominating another Roberts (50-50, I'd guess) rather than Obama (ZERO % chance). So, as for your last question, I was going to vote for Chuck Baldwin, but if it's close in California, by some unforeseen calamity befalling The One, I would definitely vote for McCain.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, I double-checked. McCain is pro-life. Sort of. His voting record suggests that he's pro-life. However, many of his public statements are a bit wishy-washy. Who knows?

Posted by: JamesCH | August 6, 2008 7:13 PM | Report abuse

JakeD:

With the lack of scruples required to run such an ad, you still don't find it distasteful? It's total absence of anything that could be considered Christian in the first place to run such an ad. You don't agree with Obama's position on abortion? That's fine. McCain is pro-choice, too. (Or did he change his mind on that, too? I can't keep up with his flip-flops) So, you're not voting for him either, right?

Posted by: JamesCH | August 6, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

The fact that John McBush is crying about having "townhall" debates with Obama is laughable, it reminds me of when McBush "dared" Obama to take an oversea's trip and then spent the whole week crying about how no one in the media was paying attention to him.


I've already seen John McBush debate and it ain't pretty:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HcdLO3jKkPo

Posted by: Fran R | August 6, 2008 7:05 PM | Report abuse

JamesCH:

No. Of course, I won't vote for him simply because he's pro-choice, regardless of whether he's the Anti-Christ as well.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:58 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks27:

I won't call you "deluded" but I am simply pointing out that some people thought the sky would fall 4, even 8, years ago when Bush was (re)elected -- yet, here we are still -- BTW: I believe that the dollar was weaker in 1798 ; )

Look, I'm just trying to keep things in perspective. I understand that you are upset about your son, but that's no reason to use hyperbole, let alone wish ill will against anyone in Washington, Virginia, or San Diego, for that matter. Hang in there.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:56 PM | Report abuse

JakeD:

As a fellow Christian, don't you find it more than a little disgusting for the McCain campaign to release an ad that fairly directly accuses Barack Obama of being the Antichrist?

Posted by: JamesCH | August 6, 2008 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Someone should tell the cult of Barry that HRC is not running. The cult members still display an intense hatred of her. I guess they are bitter because their messiah is doing such a pathetic job in the polls. They are starting to realize that their deluded dream is coming to an end.

Posted by: Jack Strwa | August 6, 2008 6:54 PM | Report abuse

Randi Rhodes' comment was in poor taste, to be sure. However, I think that the context is kind of important. She was telling a joke in a comedy club. She's not running for president.

Posted by: JamesCH | August 6, 2008 6:51 PM | Report abuse

WHILE OTHERS ANALYZE THE AD WARS, LET'S PEER THROUGH THE 'PSY OPS' LOOKING GLASS

While the media focus on the ad wars, this writer calls attention to a much more covert form of political combat: the psy ops wars.

Here's the theory: Perhaps both presidential candidates are being subject to an unremitting campaign of attempted psychological manipulation; or, to use a more benign term, conditioning.

Both men have been placed in a tight bubble. This, of course, is for their personal protection, and that of their families. But the isolation also prevents each of them from receiving the full range of input; from the outside world, from the media entourage, and, arguably, from their own staffs.

Likewise, each man no doubt has been told of the dangers and threats that accompany a run for national office. So they come to rely psychologically upon those closest to them, whether it is a spouse, or a late-night poker game with a members of a security detail. It is conceivable that those in constant physical proximity to the candidates, if they so desired, could have a profound influence on their daily decision making, perhaps even on their very thought processes.

Maybe someone close to Obama is in some subtle way suggesting the notion that he stands a better chance of winning if he's wishy-washy on the issues and laid back in his responses to direct frontal assaults like the bimbo-and-obelisk- laden "celebutate" advert.

And yes, I know what you're thinking: that doesn't sound like Michelle.

On the McCain side, the most significant "takeaway" from the current advertising countretemps could be this: The McCain ads reflect the strategic take-no-prisoners hardball of the Bush team that conceptualized them. This is the stuff of the anti-McCain campaign that the Bush forces mounted against McCain in the 2000 primaries, most notably, the South Carolina contest -- the one in which McCain had to battle uphill against false rumors that he had fathered a black child by a prostitute.

McCain's defense of the Paris-Brittany celebutante ad seemed half-hearted, insincere, and more than a tad defensive. Go to the videotape: even McCain's body language betrays what could be his true feelings.

And now we hear that Bushie operatives are pushing hard for Rob Portman as McCain's veepee pick. Rob Portman, former Bush budget director at a time when the economy is collapsing under the current administration. Rob Portman, the longtime Bush loyalist who's got entree into the inner family circle. Rob Portman, a handsome, articulate spokesperson for the established order, an image in stark contrast to the one-time (and who knows? perhaps the future) "maverick" who used to be John McCain.

There's got to be some heavy psy ops directed McCain's way in favor of Portman, who sounded almost as much like a presumptive "President Obama" when he appeared this past Sunday on the chat shows.

McCain endured five long years of physical and psychological torture at the hands of the North Vietnamese. But now, in his senior years and with his increasingly frequent "senior moments," could McCain resist the brand of hi-tech, 21st century psy ops that the spy novels say is practiced in some quarters of the "protectorati"?

Real life is not a spy novel (or so one might tend to assume). This observer is putting odds that it will be McCain, former POW, who proves himself the more resistant to psychologically-based entreaties. If McCain's vice presidential pick reflects the independence and daring of his maverick days, the wisdom of this bet, it might be argued, would tend to be confirmed.

As for Barack Obama, the "change" candidate seems to be the presidential hopeful most changed, even moreso than McCain. Obama looks to be the one whose recent words and manner exude the unnatural aura of a voodoo spell.

A full three days after McCain's tire gauge assault, Obama snapped out of his "Great Compromiser" trance and showed the fight that's been absent of late from his public performances. If the "change" candidate re-emerges, perhaps it will show that he's also "psy ops -resistant."

But Barack's veepee pick also may reveal whether there are external psychological forces impacting his decision-making. Will he continue to beat a path to the center-right, further disappointing his core supporters in what seems to be a misplaced effort to win over those who would never vote for this "different kind of Democrat" in the first place?

Viewed through the prism of psy ops, it's Barack Obama whose Rorschach test seems the most difficult to decipher.


WILL THE ELECTION EVEN MATTER? NOT WHEN
GOVT.-SUPPORTED 'VIGILANTE JUSTICE SQUADS'
ARE TARGETING AMERICAN CITIZENS

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/get-political-vic-livingston-opinion-expose-state-supported-vigilante-squads-doing-domestic-terrorism
http://www.nowpublic.com/world/zap-have-you-been-targeted-directed-energy-weapon-victims-organized-gang-stalking-say-its-happening-usa-1


Posted by: scrivener | August 6, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse

What did you think about Randi Rhodes calling Ferarro and Clinton "whores"?

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:48 PM | Report abuse

JakeD:

Good point about Clinton in '92. Of course, he only ended up with 370 EVs, so it's good that he was able to eek out a win there.

Dukakis is a poor example. I've actually met the man, and even he's the first to admit that he won his nomination because the top tier of candidates collapsed. He had no national profile before coming out of nowhere to win the nom from a less than energized Democratic Party, against the incumbent VP of a wildly popular POTUS.

None of those circumstances exist in 2008.

Posted by: JamesCH | August 6, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

JakeD - And, Bush did win, and the country is in such GOOD SHAPE! The economy has tanked. The dollar is at an all time low. We are embroiled in a war that we cannot disengage from without a disaser in the Middle East (and a disaster at home if we stay). Health care for ordinary citizens is ending. Wall Street has run wild, investors are looting peoples savings, stealing homes, committing wholesale fraud without any fear of justice, manipulating the cost of oil and electricity and metals and even food. Only a complete fool thinks that the current repite is due to anything other than political pressure on the commodity traders to lay low while the election cycle plays itself out. Once this interference with their business as usual practices is over, they will buy their way out of probems, purchasing Democrats as well as Republicans, and bleed this country dry. The military has become involved in partisan politics; generals are making millions of dollars in padded business dealings with private investment firms and companies while sending our young men off to die for NOTHING. The American people, the whole world, looks upon the United States as a basket case, an empty shell, a paper tiger that is consumed by rot and parasites with no future. The Constitution and guarrantees of basic civil rights has been made a sick joke. This whole crumbling dream that was America is ending with partisan morons on either side counting points as they trap the opposition into committing some sort of perceived mis-step or mis-statement. And you don't think George W. Bush has led us to diasaster? God grant that I could bring myself to truely believe that Obama could lead us away from the looming disaster, the cliff, that we are recklessly driving over. I do not have that belief. I have a faint hope, however, but that is all. With McCain, I KNOW we have no future but death and starvation and war and failure. You are deluded if you think otherwise.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 6, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

ace:

As an Evangelical, myself, I thought it was funny. Of course, I think that Stephen Colbert is funny, too ; )

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

Is the post count / time off? Still working out the bugs, I guess.

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:44 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of being a "celebrity", John McSame offered up his wife to be a "guest celebrity" in Sturgis, SD yesterday.

I wonder what the radical rightwing evangelical nuts think about this?:
http://bravenewfilms.org/blog/47998-mccain-exploits-wife-for-topless-biker-beauty-pageant

Posted by: ace mcfunkenstein | August 6, 2008 6:43 PM | Report abuse

I just double-checked the dates -- Dukakis rode in that tank in September -- I'm waiting to see how polished Obama is on August 16th. That will tell us alot ; )

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:41 PM | Report abuse

JamesCH:

What was the polling data for Bill Clinton in early August, 1992? Dukakis in 1988. Hang on for a bumpy ride ...

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:38 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for posting, premier : )

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:36 PM | Report abuse

If state-by-state is how this election will be won or lost, then McCain is in pretty bad shape. I think he'd much rather it be national, where it looks like he has a chance.

RealClearPolitics has Obama with a more than comfortable lead, only needing 32 toss-up EVs to win. Without toss-ups, McCain's getting his clock cleaned.

Posted by: JamesCH | August 6, 2008 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Dear Chris and WP Editors:

This is my last comment to WP. I truly enjoyed learning from you; maybe it is time to go quite. If I offended anyone with my straightforward comments, here’s my apology.

As you can tell, I was that naïve without knowing that anyone can trace my IP number of my personal computer. I did not even imagine that such thing could happen.

I have closely followed this election for my own course; I criticized all Senators Clinton, McCain, and Obama. Especially Senator Obama, if I offended you, I am so sorry. Sometimes I just see things, and I freely posted my comments here. I did not intend to upset you.

I do not know who has been stalking me, but one thing is clear: South Korea is an important ally to the United States; my LG phone is an international phone agreed between the United States and South Korea. I was angry at my friends; I was not ranting at all. I have unpaid student loans, which I will pay back soon.

The United States has to pay attention to China, Russia, and Eurasia to open their markets; free trade agreement is the only option for the United States to resolve the current trade deficits. I also truly believe that the United States has to transform them to a free world by spreading Christianity: South Korea is a successful example.

I blogged only for WP with the hope that we will soon have a denuclearization agreement with North Korea as former President Bush initiated in 1991 under his leadership.

Thank you for your understanding.

Posted by: premier | August 6, 2008 6:29 PM | Report abuse

P.S. to Ed O'Keefe -- I believe there's a typo in your original article -- did you mean to say that Reagan used it against CARTER?

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:29 PM | Report abuse

Dan:

National polls are meaningless at this point -- battleground State-by-State is where this will be won or lost -- Al Gore won the popular vote in 200 too. So what?

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:26 PM | Report abuse

The "world's biggest celebrity" versus the "old guy who turns tricks for GOP's sugar daddies"?

Should make for an interesting Fall campaign.

Personally, I'll take the celebrity, over Johnny "sweet crude" McShame.

Posted by: JP2 | August 6, 2008 6:20 PM | Report abuse

The latest polls find McCain ahead in Florida, Obama ahead nationally, and Gordon Smith pulling away in Oregon. Full roundup: http://campaigndiaries.com/2008/08/06/wednesdaypolls

Posted by: Dan | August 6, 2008 6:13 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks27:

In 2004, wasn't it also "If Bush wins, this country is completely and totally lost"?

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Patrick - It doesn't matter at all by the amount of OPbama's lead. It only matters that he wins so that we have a chance to survive. If McCain wins, this country is completely and totally lost. It has no future whatsoever. We simply will not survive four years more of outsourcing jobs, loosing basic healthcare for our citizens, allowing Wall Street and corporate swine to loot the economy, allowing the crooked and disasterously incompetent armchair hacks at the Pentagon and CIA to lie us into more failed foreign ventured. We either clean house, get rid of the entrenched bafoons at the Pentagon, simply close down the CIA and isolate the paranoid cowboys that currently populate it, bring back trade tariff's and duties and fees to protect jobs, enact manditory universal health care coverage and jetison the private sector parasite that have tripled costs in our present system, and do whatever it takes to acheive complete and total enegery independence, or we can simply close up shop and go out of business as a country. Along the way, I really want some manner of identifying the toxic right wingers and making them pay dearly for the garbage and lies and nonsense they spew forth daily here and elsewhere. The very notion of having a reality television program featuring a squirming Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannidy, strapped down to a hospital gurney, about to be put to death for treason, has far more appeal right now than anything I have ever imagined. I would simply like the Swift Boaters and the like to join them. I have never been much for supporting the death penalty before, but having my son blown apart in the Bush-McCain diasterous Iraq war has given me a whole new look on current events. The enemy isn't in IRaq. It's in Washington and Virginia.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 6, 2008 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Considering there is very little evidence of McCain actually runing the ad, I'd say it doesn't signal a change in their strategy.

Posted by: Evil | August 6, 2008 6:00 PM | Report abuse

marie3548: I get it - You're referring to George Bush aren't you?

Thanks!

Posted by: Anonymous | August 6, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

And the dopes like the Washington Post will repeat every Republican talking point like it is a fact.

The media, like this doofus want to be sure it is a close race. Or elect McCain so they can lie to start more wars.

Chris, go away. No one cares about the BS the scum Washington Post pedals anymore.

Posted by: Ken | August 6, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

Check this out ev1
Does this sound familiar

This will be considered off-topic — but it isn’t. I thought I’d share this letter which was sent to the Editor of the Times-Dispatch by a gentlemen who escaped Cuba in the 1960’s. His words come from the experience of believing in someone, without taking the time to know who they really are, and the consequences that followed:

Subject: Celebration

From Richmond Times-Dispatch, Monday, July 7, 2008

Dear Editor, Times-Dispatch:

Each year I get to celebrate Independence Day twice. On June 30 I celebrate my independence day, and on July 4, I celebrate America ’s. This year is special, because it marks the 40th anniversary of my independence.

On June 30, 1968, I escaped Communist Cuba, and a few months later, I was in the United States to stay. That I happened to arrive in Richmond on Thanksgiving Day is just part of the story, but I digress.

I’ve thought a lot about the anniversary this year. The election-year rhetoric has made me think a lot about Cuba and what transpired there. In the late 1950s, most Cubans thought Cuba needed a change, so when a young leader came along, every Cuban was at least receptive.

When the young leader spoke eloquently and passionately and denounced the old system, the press fell in love with him. They never questioned who his friends were or what he really believed in. When he said he would help the farmers and the poor and bring free medical care and education to all, everyone followed. When he said he would bring justice and equality to all, everyone said, ‘Praise the Lord.’ And when the young leader said, ‘I will be for change and I’ ll bring you change,’ everone yelled, ‘Viva Fidel!’

But nobody asked about the change, so by the time the executioner’s guns went silent, the people’s guns had been taken away. By the time everyone was equal, they were equally poor, hungry, and oppressed. By the time everyone received their free education, it was worth nothing. By the time the press noticed, it was too late, because they were now working for him. By the time the change was finally implemented, Cuba had been knocked down a couple of notches to Third-World status. By the time the change was over, more than a million people had taken to boats, rafts, and inner tubes. You can call those who made it ashore anywhere else in the world the most fortunate Cubans. And now I’m back to the beginning of my story.

Luckily, we in America would never fall for a young leader who promised change without asking, what change? How will you carry it out? What will it cost America ?

Would we?

Manuel Alvarez, JR.
posted by
Kathleen | 08.06.08 - 2:48 pm | #

——————————————————————————–

Posted by: marie3548 | August 6, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Check this out ev1
Does this sound familiar

This will be considered off-topic — but it isn’t. I thought I’d share this letter which was sent to the Editor of the Times-Dispatch by a gentlemen who escaped Cuba in the 1960’s. His words come from the experience of believing in someone, without taking the time to know who they really are, and the consequences that followed:

Subject: Celebration

From Richmond Times-Dispatch, Monday, July 7, 2008

Dear Editor, Times-Dispatch:

Each year I get to celebrate Independence Day twice. On June 30 I celebrate my independence day, and on July 4, I celebrate America ’s. This year is special, because it marks the 40th anniversary of my independence.

On June 30, 1968, I escaped Communist Cuba, and a few months later, I was in the United States to stay. That I happened to arrive in Richmond on Thanksgiving Day is just part of the story, but I digress.

I’ve thought a lot about the anniversary this year. The election-year rhetoric has made me think a lot about Cuba and what transpired there. In the late 1950s, most Cubans thought Cuba needed a change, so when a young leader came along, every Cuban was at least receptive.

When the young leader spoke eloquently and passionately and denounced the old system, the press fell in love with him. They never questioned who his friends were or what he really believed in. When he said he would help the farmers and the poor and bring free medical care and education to all, everyone followed. When he said he would bring justice and equality to all, everyone said, ‘Praise the Lord.’ And when the young leader said, ‘I will be for change and I’ ll bring you change,’ everone yelled, ‘Viva Fidel!’

But nobody asked about the change, so by the time the executioner’s guns went silent, the people’s guns had been taken away. By the time everyone was equal, they were equally poor, hungry, and oppressed. By the time everyone received their free education, it was worth nothing. By the time the press noticed, it was too late, because they were now working for him. By the time the change was finally implemented, Cuba had been knocked down a couple of notches to Third-World status. By the time the change was over, more than a million people had taken to boats, rafts, and inner tubes. You can call those who made it ashore anywhere else in the world the most fortunate Cubans. And now I’m back to the beginning of my story.

Luckily, we in America would never fall for a young leader who promised change without asking, what change? How will you carry it out? What will it cost America ?

Would we?

Manuel Alvarez, JR.
posted by
Kathleen | 08.06.08 - 2:48 pm | #

——————————————————————————–

Posted by: marie3548 | August 6, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

no, "celebrity" is the new "3am phone call." it's a cheap ploy that will be ridiculed and joked about endlessly. luckily we have funnyordie.com while snl is in recess.

Posted by: against the DLC | August 6, 2008 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Are any of you BHO people familiar with ageism?

Ageism is stereotyping and prejudice against individuals or groups because of their age. You show the three signs of ageism: 1.) prejudicial attitudes towards older people, old age and the ageing process; 2.)discriminatory practices against older people; and institutional practices and policies that perpetuate stereotypes about older people.

You are all a bunch of anti-old guy.

--Johnny McCain 90-ish year old mother


Posted by: Bubba | August 6, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, that celebrity ad is working so well that Obama is only beating McCain by 5 points in the new Time poll. http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1829948,00.html

Here's a telling statistic for you. 49% of Obama voters describe themselves as "very enthusiastic," compared to just 21% of McCain backers, and a full 27% of the Republican nominee's supporters say they are either "not very" or "not at all" enthusiastic about him, compared with 10% for Obama.

Posted by: Patrick | August 6, 2008 5:42 PM | Report abuse

From the beginning, I have always said that John McSame is the TRUE celebrity in this race (and for that matter, all of his previous races).

Just what has he done that is so noteworthy?

He got shot down in Viet Nam, became a POW for five years, and following that he abandoned his first wife for a millionaire "trollop cunt" (as he describes her) who proped him up into politics.

What LEADERSHIP did he bring to the table???

Posted by: Gerry | August 6, 2008 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Let's keep in mind that unless someone helps him - McCain won't be able to see Paris' video. Apparently his wife can web-surf, so maybe she's already shown it to him.

Yea, and it's Obama that's "elitist".

Posted by: NoOneImportant | August 6, 2008 5:33 PM | Report abuse

or his flip flop on being against the bush tax cuts?

shame on you john McCain!

see you at the debates bitches

barack obama.

Posted by: jay spartan | August 6, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

PT 1….
John McCain has received two million dollars from the oil industry, and now he want to give them a four Billion dollars tax break, when they are raking- in record profits on the shoulders of America. So, John McCain said, “Our dangerous dependence on foreign oil has been thirty years in the making, and was caused by the failure of politicians in Washington to think long-term about the future of the country.” What John McCain neglected to mention was that during those thirty years, he was in Washington for twenty-six of them. And in all that time, he did little to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Not to mention, that out of the last twenty eight years, twenty of those years, our nation energy policies were manipulated by an oil man in the Whitehouse representing his party interest (George Sr.12 years. George Jr.8 years) that have all but destroyed our Country.
Here is some straight talk. When John McCain was running in the Republican primary he never mention or addressed anything about this nation energy problems. After the primary, he saw that Barack Obama energy position along with his other ideas was getting footage so he flip-flopped, and quickly turned into Mitt Romney. The Straight Talk express at its best. Although Jack Cafferty is one of my favorite reporters in the media today, they are wrong! So here my question to you: Why do Jack Cafferty and Politico David Paul Kuhn and Kenneth along with countless others in the news media find it so amusing to report on Barack Obama supposedly flip-flopping and gaffes, when John McCain have twisted on more issues to have started a tornado with his silly shenanigans, then any Politician in recent history beside Mitt Romney, not to mention his long list of gaffes. Yet, they fail to give equal negative coverage. Can I be sensing media bias? After all, Barack Obama has received 72% negative coverage, when they have reported on him. WHY? America has to stop acting like they don't know the difference between right and wrong. Thus, John McCain campaign is represented by lies instead of real ideas and he has a serious character issues to say the least!
Finally, there are those who say that John McCain’s new ad depicts Barack Obama as trying to present himself as a messiah, well I beg to differ. I believe that John McCain new ad tries to depict Barack Obama as being as old as Moses, when John McCain himself is old enough to have been Moses childhood buddy!

Posted by: Rod | August 6, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Seems the McCain campaign may have issued a press release stating "Paris Wants Drilling". I'm still rolling on the floor. Seriously, McCain's "Wierd Uncle" act is getting pretty good. He's even convinced one of his former county co-chairs from 2000, me, that he's becoming nuttier than a fruit cake.

First biker babes and now this. Next thing you know, Cindy will have her high school pom-poms back!

Posted by: Beware of Fruit Cakes | August 6, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of "celebrity", I can't seem to find too many Hollywood productions that Barack Obama has been featured in but golly gee, check out Cruster McCains Movie Star Resume!


http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0564587/

Posted by: Get A Clue, Chris. | August 6, 2008 5:29 PM | Report abuse

Or Mitt Romney's non-answer when questioned what Old Man River has done about energy in 26 years in the Senate. Mitt the backpedaler replied, "I'm no historian." With surrogates like that, who needs enemies?

Shame on you Mitt Romney!!

Sincerely,

Hillary Rodham Clinton

Posted by: The Franchise | August 6, 2008 5:26 PM | Report abuse

or his flip flop on off shore drilling?

Posted by: jay spartan | August 6, 2008 5:23 PM | Report abuse

Or his flip flop on the gas savings from properly inflated tires?

Posted by: The Franchise | August 6, 2008 5:22 PM | Report abuse

Still looking for any mention of "the way to win the war is to win the war".

Posted by: The Franchise | August 6, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

McCain is desperate, and he's willing to try anything to dent Senator Obama. I'm so tired of McCain's negativity. I'm also tired of McCain's war-mongering and fear-mongering. We need a more inspirational and upbeat president. Senator Obama has built a more productive campaign. The thing is, McCain is just like Bush, and I don't want to have George W. Bush again. The world hates Bush, and Bush continues to sink in favorability ratings. He's down to like 21% favorable. That's really bad. Anyway, we need change in this country. We need someone who knows our economy is failing - and when reporters asked McCain about the economy - McCain said he knew nothing about the economy. We need change - and that's why my community is mainly voting for Obama. You can help Senator Obama by visiting his campaign website - http://www.BarackObama.com - and sign up for volunteer oppotunities and more. Let's not elect George W. Bush again!

Posted by: Allen | August 6, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Why has Old Man River gotten a free ride from the media over his attempt to pimp Cindy out at the "Sturgis Girls Gone Wild" event?

Shame on you Methuselah!

Sincerely,

Hillary Rodham Clinton

Posted by: The Franchise | August 6, 2008 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Cilizza seems to think McCain's 'celeb' ad is a winner for McCain. Well, duh. Paris Hilton did better and shows up McCain as some dumb old coot. McCain is so senile that he forgets he dabbled in acting on TV (24) and Wedding Crashers. What an idiot, this Celebrity Wannabe McCain is.

Posted by: M. Stratas | August 6, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

If the Obama campaign wants to fight fire with fire, they will run an ad titled "Rich Old Man," that will go something like this:

John McCain. He owns 8 homes. He travels in his wife's private jet. He gets free health care courtesy of the taxpayers. John McCains' net worth is $36 million, his wife's is estimated at over $100 million, and their annual income at 8 million. He blamed homeowners for the bank crisis. He thinks Social Security is a "disgrace," but he's been accepting its payments for 7 years. He wants more tax breaks for oil companies, companies that send jobs overseas, and of course, for his fellow millionaires.

John McCain. Does he understand your problems?
Reply Favorite Flag as abusive

Posted by: turningfool | August 6, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Oh my, the Fix is trying so hard to make sure that the trivialization of American politics has a chance. The narrative that is being created is that the news people are being suckered into a childish personally acrimonious debate by Karl Rove's surrogates.
Seriously, "Is Celebrity the New Flip Flop" sounds like a political article written by Cosmo.

Posted by: emptyk | August 6, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

I think McCain must have had a couple of mini-strokes the last few years or something, he doesn't seem to remember what he said from one day to the next anymore. If the corporate media would report on all of McCain contradictions and lies he would all already be out of this race.

McCain debates McCain about Bush:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnb2IrsU1Cg

Posted by: Lars | August 6, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

I think this says it all:

ht tp://www.brasschecktv.com/page/325.html

Posted by: XXXX1 | August 6, 2008 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Sure, the McCain celeb ad has gotten 1.6 million views in a week. Sounds like a lot...

...until you realize the new Paris Hilton video has gotten 3.6 million views in 22 hours.

Posted by: Stats | August 6, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse

McCain got where he is today in two of the most old fashioned ways : family connections in the military that made him a service academy legacy admission (much like GWB at Yale) and his money by marrying it. His books are all ghosted with the same aide and his temper and lack of knowledge on geography, differences between Shia and Sunni, and the economy all show that if elected we could do worse than George W Bush which is a real scary thought. And he's been playing the celebrity role for almost as long as Obama has been alive, whether it was from the actions of others or on his own.

Posted by: ejgallagher1 | August 6, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

Watch the spell-check! "Coming on the heals of yesterday's..." I think you are looking for the word "heels."

The good doctor heals the sores on the patient's heels.

Watch it, Cillizza. You're r(v)apid-fire commentary on the media war is looking pretty sloppy.

Posted by: Mikkel | August 6, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

But, has anyone seen the pics of John McCain and Warren Beatty? I kid you not:

http://theretrospectivist.blogspot.com/2008/08/warren-beatty-john-mccain.html

An eye for an eye...

Posted by: The Retrospectivist | August 6, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

So far the New Fix is a lot like the Old Fix, but with the clock wrong.

Posted by: Blarg | August 6, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Ummm where is the racism? I must have failed code breaking.
What is laughable, that the only choice according to the "media" we have are these two clowns to vote for!

Yes, we're stuck with another phony, elitist, pseudo-sophisticate guy that only the shallow, ADD, pop-culture-lovin' media would vote for while, yet again, the guy on the other side way outclasses him in the real-man department even tho he's 70 years old.

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 6, 2008 4:22 PM


McCain's supporters are so desperate that they're using racist code words and dog whistle phrases (see above) to describe their jealousy of Senator Obama.

It would be laughable if it wasn't so pathetic....

Posted by: Esteban | August 6, 2008 4:41 PM | Report abuse

Quite obviously the next Moveon.org commercial should be John and his Washington is broken." line, followed by lots of proof that HIS party broke it, and he was part of the wrecking crew.

John broke it due to his total incompetence as an operator, what gives anybody the reason to believe that he is competent enough a mechanic to fix it? Especially since his cabinet will be some iteration of the current three stooges act that George's cabinet has been giving us for the last eight years.

That commercial should really come back to bite him after the next wave of resignations, indictments, and IG reports of more corruption and criminal activity.

Play it again, John, PLEASE!

Posted by: ceflynline@msn.com | August 6, 2008 4:39 PM | Report abuse

Future McCain ads will attack Obama for:

1. Not taking advantage of early bird specials.
2. Not even qualifying for AARP membership.
3. Not driving a good solid car, like a Packard or DeSoto.
4. Eating solid food.
5. Being one of "those meddling kids."

Posted by: Spectator2 | August 6, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

McCain has long since enjoyed his moments of fame, time languishing in the spotlight as a celebrity war hero. Now he's out of sorts that a younger, robust guy is coming on with a considerable following and ideas that obviously appeal to a stressed public.

McCain's narrative? It's like that of the film SUNSET BOULEVARD. An aging, fading star, overwhelmed with jealousy, perpetrates a crazed act of madness when a virile competitor enters the picture vying for the affection of her script writer.

The conclusion is not a happy one.

Posted by: 2mature2bhornswoggled | August 6, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

John McCain is not fit for the presidency, and I predict that after 1 - 2 debates, he won't be the nominee anymore.

Posted by: Susan | August 6, 2008 4:31 PM

ive got money on him not making the convention.

Posted by: exit stage right in 3..2..1... | August 6, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse

Yes, we're stuck with another phony, elitist, pseudo-sophisticate guy that only the shallow, ADD, pop-culture-lovin' media would vote for while, yet again, the guy on the other side way outclasses him in the real-man department even tho he's 70 years old.

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 6, 2008 4:22 PM


McCain's supporters are so desperate that they're using racist code words and dog whistle phrases (see above) to describe their jealousy of Senator Obama.

It would be laughable if it wasn't so pathetic....

Posted by: flesh | August 6, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

I will take my 'celebrity' any day, over a man who offers up his wife for a nude beauty contest at an event that celebrates domestic violence and sexual assault.

John McCain is not fit for the presidency, and I predict that after 1 - 2 debates, he won't be the nominee anymore.

Posted by: Susan | August 6, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

The brain dead Paris Hilton carved McCain a new one in a spoof video. Now he can have two colostomy bags.

Posted by: Spectator2 | August 6, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

There's obviously a reason the Republicans don't even try to win on issues or competence anymore. But as long as the media abets lying character assassination, they'll continue to win without them. It worked against McCain in 2000, and it'll probably work for him now. Good job, Chris, I hope you're proud of what your profession's come to.

Posted by: Aleks | August 6, 2008 4:30 PM | Report abuse


.
The hussein sycophants of the media just can't handle the truth, so naturally every time someone points out the major flaws in his character they claim it's an "attack" or it's "racism" or similar bs.

In fact, it is very appropriate to compare TheOne with Hilton and Spears because the similarities between these three are overwhelming - e.g. both Hilton and Spears have created as much useful legislation as hussein; all three have the same level of foreign policy expertise; they are equally shallow and self-absorbed; they are equally experienced expert-level drug users; and so on, ad nauseam.

(My apologies to Hilton and Spears for comparing them to TheOne - I understand how insulting that could be.)

==============
lso: A Washington Post article in the 24 February 2005 edition incudes the following from TheOne:

"Andy Warhol said we all get our 15 minutes of fame," says Balack Obama. "I've already had an hour and a half. I mean, I'm so overexposed, I'm making Paris Hilton look like a recluse."

/

/

Posted by: ALEX H. | August 6, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

No O'Keefe, the old "flip flop" is still the new "flip flop", because Obama does that, too.

nope sorry, McCain just flip floped again on tire gauges, yes even he agrees with those horrible liberals at AAA and NASCAR!

http://blogs.reuters.com/trail08/2008/08/05/mccain-takes-air-out-of-tire-pressure-debate/

Posted by: McTiregauge | August 6, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

"Only McCain has taken on big tobacco, drug companies, fought corruption in both parties. He'll reform Wall Street, battle Big Oil, make America prosper again."

What a load of crap. What about hitching rides on lobbyist jets? What about being on the take while S&L's were looted?

You know why the bus is called the Straight Talk Express? Because McHypocrite talks straight out of his a$$.

Posted by: bondjedi | August 6, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

No O'Keefe, the old "flip flop" is still the new "flip flop", because Obama does that, too.

"Celebrity" is the new "Swift Boat" in the sense that it's related to Obama's egotistical shallowness in the way Kerry's over-the-top bragging about medals he got in Vietnam for doing things other swift boat guys did every day undermined his campaign because it made him look like an egotistical phony.

If you're sensing a pattern here, you're right. Because the media plays such a big role in highlighting and promoting the successful nomination of those Democratic nominee candidates that appeal to it most, Democrats keep getting stuck with nominees who can't win elections because they're phony, pseudo-sophisticate, ivy league guys with affectations of elitism and some gimmicky pop appeal, like Kerry with the media's hyper promotion of his gaggle of thinly-deserved medals that got him swift-boated.

Yes, we're stuck with another phony, elitist, pseudo-sophisticate guy that only the shallow, ADD, pop-culture-lovin' media would vote for while, yet again, the guy on the other side way outclasses him in the real-man department even tho he's 70 years old.

Posted by: AsperGirl | August 6, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

They're running the standard "democrats=elitist" because that's all they've got. McCain doesn't have any new ideas, and the old ideas he has are proven failures by the current administration.

Posted by: corinthian | August 6, 2008 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Once again, John McCain is proving his desperation.

His attack ads are glib and insult the intelligence of Americans. They're hoping that nobody will look at McCain's record and see his boundless hypocrisy and abject failure to create meaningful change despite three decades in public service.

His ad "The One" was a slap in the face of Christianity. Rather than offering us any meaningful policy proposals, he has decided to boil down his entire campaign to the slogan: "Vote for me, because the other guy is the Antichrist."

Seriously? With all the very real problems we face in this country and around the world, the GOP is going to throw its hat into the ring with the religious bigots spreading their viral e-mail feces across the country?

I've always known that the majority of the so-called "conservative" leaders of today are so obsessed with winning that they don't care how they do it. I just wouldn't have thought that a man like John McCain would prove to be such a coward.

That's right. He's a coward. He hides behind the worst kind of unsubstantiated garbage, because he knows that an honest, one-on-one campaign would be nothing but disaster for him. He's come a long way from serving with honor as a pilot in the U.S. Navy, hasn't he?

Sen. John S. McCain of Arizona is a coward. So afraid of losing, that he'll say or do anything to win. He's a weak-willed, ignorant, cowardly, poor excuse for a public servant.

Posted by: What happened to honor? | August 6, 2008 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Now that my attacks on my opponent's celebrity status have garnered so much attention, I am preparing some that attack him for being young, intelligent, and virile, and a refreshing change of pace. Who wants to vote for someone like that?

Posted by: McSame | August 6, 2008 4:20 PM | Report abuse

blarg-yup backfired on her. im pretty sure the repubicans will have the same result soon.

by the way, anyone want to bet you dont see this report on the evening news?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/08/05/AR2008080503502_pf.html

Posted by: jay spartan | August 6, 2008 4:19 PM | Report abuse

McCain's got nothing to run on or offer other than a third term of BushCo policies.

John McBush's "Britney ad" continues to backfire on him and his Rove handlers:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cd0Kb2SnD_Q&eurl=http://www.dailykos.com/comments/2008/8/6/74824/01921/824

Posted by: astral99 | August 6, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

"This makes perfect sense considering the success of the "Celeb" ad: It has been watched more than 1.6 million times on YouTube and replayed constantly on network and cable news show"

and the paris hilton response to McCain's comparison to her and obama got 3 million hits, i would link to it but why give her anymore attention.

its sad to see McCain try to fight with rove gutter tactics and not really see any movement in polls other than leading 1-2 points or being tied. my advice is stick to the issues, seems like obama is doing that.

Posted by: jay spartan | August 6, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Didn't Hillary Clinton use very similar tactics against Obama? She attacked him for being popular, for having devoted followers, and for giving inspiring speeches. Then she lost. I wonder why McCain is trying to follow in her footsteps.

Posted by: Blarg | August 6, 2008 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Is this thing on?

Posted by: JakeD | August 6, 2008 4:03 PM | Report abuse

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