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McCain and the Danger of Being Didactic

Over the last 48 hours, Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) has delivered what amounts to an extended foreign policy lecture to his almost-certain general election opponent -- Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.).

McCain has blasted Obama repeatedly over the fact that the lllinois senator has not been to Iraq in more than two years (872 days to be exact), insisting that conditions on the ground have changed drastically in that time and the almost-certain Democratic nominee owes it to himself and the American voters to go over to the war zone and see the progress first hand.

McCain's comments last night in Los Angeles, which came after Obama told the New York Times Jeff Zeleny that he was considering a trip to Iraq, were typical of the tact he has taken on the issue.

Here's a sampling of what McCain had to say:

"I am glad to hear that Senator Obama is now 'considering a trip to Iraq.' It's long overdue. It's been 871 days since he was there. And I'm confident that when he goes, he will then change his position on the conflict in Iraq because he will see the success that has been achieved on the ground and the consequences of failure if we set dates for withdrawal, as he wants to do."

And, a bit more (because it's important):

"So the fact is Senator Obama was driven to his position by his ideology and not by the facts on the ground. And he does not have the knowledge or experience to make the judgments. Presidents have to listen and learn. Presidents have to make judgments no matter how popular or unpopular they may be. So the success in Iraq is undeniable. It has been long, hard and frustrating and great sacrifice has been made."

What McCain is doing is obvious. His campaign believes, rightly, that given the toxic political climate that exists in the country for Republicans, the Arizona senator's only path to the presidency is rooted in raising doubts about Obama's readiness for the job while simultaneously pointing out that few politicians have as much knowledge of the cost of war as McCain.

It's a sound strategy. But, the tone with which McCain is making the case may well be undercutting the efficacy of his message.

One of McCain's great strengths as a politician is the sense among voters that while he believes passionately in his positions, he does not see those who disagree with him as inherently evil. Put another way, McCain is the happy warrior -- always fighting for his beliefs but also willing to share a laugh at his own expense or put down the gloves and shake hands once the fight is over.

In recent weeks, McCain has largely abandoned that happy warrior personality -- especially as he tries to frame Obama as inexperienced and incapable of leading the world at such a crucial point in the country's -- and the world's -- history.

McCain has cast himself as the teacher, Obama as the student, a strategy eerily reminiscent of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's (N.Y.) primary campaign -- "he's a talented, young man but....." -- which looks almost certain to come up short.

Judging from the scads of exit poll data generated by the protracted Democratic primary, there are a number of people who still wonder whether Obama is up to the job. However, there are far larger numbers of people who want a fresh face in Washington and are willing to try something new rather than go with old reliable. (What else explains the toppling of the most prominent Democratic political dynasty in the primary fight?)

By casting the race as a harsh and demanding teacher versus an eager and promising student, McCain is potentially reinforcing the idea that he represents the status quo and Obama represents change.

That is a dangerous dynamic given the state of the country and will remind many of the 1996 presidential election in which then-Sen. Bob Dole (R-Kans.) sought to oust President Bill Clinton by arguing it was time for grownups to be put back in charge.

Dole, unwittingly, turned the campaign into nothing more than a father lecturing his son -- not exactly a winning message. (A devastating piece of that narrative came via a send-up of Dole on "Saturday Night Live" in which the Kansas senator was portrayed as a member of the "Real World." That skit produced one line that has become political folklore in the intervening years: "That's Bob Dole's chair, and everybody knows it!")

The candidate as curmudgeon doomed Dole for any number of reasons -- not the least of which was that it reinforced and accentuated the big age difference between him and Clinton.

McCain, who will be 72 by the time of the general election, cannot follow that path. Age is already an active issue in this campaign. By scolding Obama at every turn, McCain is driving a contrast between the two candidates that, given the electorate's desire for change and Obama's call for a new generation of leaders, is not likely to work in the Arizona Republican's favor.

McCain is right to talk about his experience and Obama's lack of it when it comes to foreign policy matters. It's the most solid ground a Republican can hope to fight on this November. But, tone matters in politics, and McCain needs to remember what got him this close to the pinnacle of American politics.

By Chris Cillizza  |  May 29, 2008; 11:50 AM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Comments

McCain undercuts his own strength when he says Iran is training al Qaeda operatives in Iraq, and that our troop levels there are down to those before the surge (it seems we're in for more such gaffes this summer). You're left to conclude that he either doesn't have his facts straight or is starting to become senile. Either way, Obama is right to make as much hay of it as possible. If McCain is so experienced and knowledgeable on this subject, he shouldn't be making such basic mistakes. It buttresses Obama's argument that judgement, not experience, is what really matters.

Posted by: Jon Morgan | June 1, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Senator Obama would be taking a real risk if he went to Iraq now... putting himself into the hands of the Pentagon "image managers" is dangerous, not because they would exploit the opportunity to try to influence Senator Obama about the progress of Bush's War, but because they would exploit the opportunity to influence the American electorate's image of Obama. Anyone remember the photo of Dukakis in the tank?

Posted by: Iconoblaster | May 30, 2008 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Senator Obama would be taking a real risk if he went to Iraq now... putting himself into the hands of the Pentagon "image managers" is dangerous, not because they would exploit the opportunity to try to influence Senator Obama about the progress of Bush's War, but because they would exploit the opportunity to influence the American electorate's image of Obama. Anyone remember the photo of Dukakis in the tank?

Posted by: Iconoblaster | May 30, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Um, were Obama to go Iraq, would he be convinced that being able to walk through a market with ground and air support protecting him meant that the market was normally safe?
In general, a president gets his information from others. He can't get it in person -- especially from a war zone.

Posted by: UM | May 30, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

So what is he supposed to do? Shut up!? You are taking for granted that it's the republicans fault that the economy is bad. That is the change you are talking about, isn't it? Ask yourself whose ideology is at the root of the infating dollar and skyrockinig gas prices. If youd don't know look to FDR and JFK and now Obama.

Posted by: Lunatoro | May 30, 2008 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Did McAnus mention anything about having a closet homosexual(Charlie Crist) as his VP?This would probably sit well with the Log Cabin Republicans if Crist would announce that he's gay, but I doubt it will sit well with the Right Guard.

Posted by: oldman&theC | May 30, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

You mean the unschooled writer who graduated from Georgetown University works for a top news paper is a frequent guest on numerous TV shows almost every night and lives a life that many would kill for, that unschooled writer? Interesting coming from someone who is probably sitting in their bedroom in their underwear whose life revolves around the internet. Hurry now, I think your toast just popped up and the View will be coming on soon so you will have a full life today.

++++++++
To the unschooled writer of this article---the word in this case is tack,(direction, as in sailing, not tact).I expect a little good English out of a reporter in a national newspaper.

Posted by: majorteddy | May 30, 2008 9:39 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Maybe Obama should offer to take McAnus on a tour of the veterans hospital and some of the rehabilitation units for the amputees and some cemeteries, and then John McAnus would be more likely to feel we should get out of this hopeless mess that is killing our troops, maiming them and costing $5000 a second.

Posted by: LetthemdrinkCrownRoyal | May 30, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

To the unschooled writer of this article---the word in this case is tack,(direction, as in sailing, not tact).I expect a little good English out of a reporter in a national newspaper.

Posted by: majorteddy | May 30, 2008 9:39 AM | Report abuse

Since this was obviously written by a republican from the talking points why would you be voting for a demarcate in the first place?
===========

Truer words were never spoken here.I plan to copy and paste this and put it on every blog on the internet.....thanks


Whatever colors he is, Obama surrounds himself with divisive, angry people and pretends to be shocked, shocked that they're saying what they always said.

This man is dangerous, and the people he'll bring with him are more dangerous.

He's unqualified, unprepared, has too much baggage in his radical friends and will lose the unlosable election.

Hillary wasn't my first choice, but she sure is now. She's got grit, determination and a helluva lot of courage to keep going in the face of an Obama-adoring media who lost their critical faculties in the face of the rock star of Hope! and Change!

She's all that stands between us and the disaster of such a neophyte's presidency.

I -- and just about everyone I know -- plan to skip the Presidential column and just vote for local Democrats in November if Obama is the nominee.

Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi can't force this one down our throats. I'd rather suffer McCain than Obama's empty rhetoric and divisive associates.

Posted by: Franklin D. | May 29, 2008 11:50 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 8:41 AM | Report abuse

Since Obama and Hillary are pretty much the same candidate as far as issues go you are saying you care more about a one candadate then you do about your country.
++++++++++
Truer words were never spoken here.I plan to copy and paste this and put it on every blog on the internet.....thanks


Whatever colors he is, Obama surrounds himself with divisive, angry people and pretends to be shocked, shocked that they're saying what they always said.

This man is dangerous, and the people he'll bring with him are more dangerous.

He's unqualified, unprepared, has too much baggage in his radical friends and will lose the unlosable election.

Hillary wasn't my first choice, but she sure is now. She's got grit, determination and a helluva lot of courage to keep going in the face of an Obama-adoring media who lost their critical faculties in the face of the rock star of Hope! and Change!

She's all that stands between us and the disaster of such a neophyte's presidency.

I -- and just about everyone I know -- plan to skip the Presidential column and just vote for local Democrats in November if Obama is the nominee.

Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi can't force this one down our throats. I'd rather suffer McCain than Obama's empty rhetoric and divisive associates.

Posted by: Franklin D. | May 29, 2008 11:50 PM
Posted by: | May 30, 2008 7:16 AM

Posted by: | May 30, 2008 8:02 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 8:34 AM | Report abuse


Truer words were never spoken here.I plan to copy and paste this and put it on every blog on the internet.....thanks


Whatever colors he is, Obama surrounds himself with divisive, angry people and pretends to be shocked, shocked that they're saying what they always said.

This man is dangerous, and the people he'll bring with him are more dangerous.

He's unqualified, unprepared, has too much baggage in his radical friends and will lose the unlosable election.

Hillary wasn't my first choice, but she sure is now. She's got grit, determination and a helluva lot of courage to keep going in the face of an Obama-adoring media who lost their critical faculties in the face of the rock star of Hope! and Change!

She's all that stands between us and the disaster of such a neophyte's presidency.

I -- and just about everyone I know -- plan to skip the Presidential column and just vote for local Democrats in November if Obama is the nominee.

Howard Dean and Nancy Pelosi can't force this one down our throats. I'd rather suffer McCain than Obama's empty rhetoric and divisive associates.

Posted by: Franklin D. | May 29, 2008 11:50 PM
Posted by: | May 30, 2008 7:16 AM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 8:02 AM | Report abuse

Not only did the great "teacher" err on how quiet Mosul is(there were over 50 deaths there Thursday), but he's wrong on troop strength....we have NOT reduced troops to pre-surge levels....the "teacher" should brush up on his facts before scolding Barack.

Posted by: DickNH | May 30, 2008 7:38 AM | Report abuse

So, using McCain logic, Obama would be FOR the continued war without bounds if he had toured a marketplace with Gen. Petraeus last year? This, after the marketplace had been cleared by US security, yet still required a bullet-proof vest and circling attack helicopters and 100 troops to guard him? The Obama press conference could have mentioned how great it was to go shopping in the marketplaces of Iraq again.

Posted by: steve boyington | May 30, 2008 7:26 AM | Report abuse

Hmmm....the "teacher" showed his lack of knowledge yesterday when he commented on the peacefulness of Mosul on a day there were 3 suicide attacks there, causing over 50 deaths. Is that acceptable, Mac ?

Posted by: DickNH | May 30, 2008 7:12 AM | Report abuse

"What else explains the toppling of the most prominent Democratic political dynasty in the primary fight?"

Because Democrats finally woke up to the fact that the Clintons are sleazy. Because we believe in democracy, and not monarchy, and did not accept the media's claim she was entitled to the nomination. Because she has lost touch with the average person and lives in a bubble. Because she did not have the courage to object to the Iraq War resolution when she voted for it. [just to name a few reasons]

Posted by: freeDom | May 30, 2008 5:08 AM | Report abuse

Does this thread represent the America I served and fought for?

So, many comments reduced to RACE and hatred?

This primary season is not about race or gender people. This is about the future of America.
Are there really that many people stuck looking at the lowest common denominator?

Have we learned nothing in this country?

My brothers and sisters continue to fight and die overseas. Proudly serving, even when they don't agree.

Many of you could use a little military discipline in your lives.

Hillary a WHITE CRACKER?

Obama a Racist Rag Head?

What?!

Have you all lot your minds?

Goodness!


Posted by: Vance | May 30, 2008 4:15 AM | Report abuse

The Obama people show their true colors:


There must be some standards Chris look at this quote


TELL ME THESE PEOPLE ARE NOT RACIST AGAINST WHITES:


Below is their post from before:


I will be there on Saturday, proud, black, and ready to march for Obama. I will smack with my placard any skinny cracker Clinton supporter who dares to steal this win.

It will be thousands of Obama faithful versus a couple dozen mayonnaise-licking, butter cream sucking, minivan driving, Sex and the City watching, honky pigeons!

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 2:33 AM | Report abuse

THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A RULES COMMITTEE MEETING LIKE THIS IN THE HISTORY OF THE REPUBLIC

Marriott guards ready.


Obama poised to complete his STEAL of the nomination based on taking votes away from WHITES.


HILLARY NEVER SAW IT COMING.


Hillary, a former support of affirmative action, has now come out against ALL AFFIRMATIVE ACTION PROGRAMS after realizing that she too could lose her job to a black man.


Let Florida Count


White Voters in Florida and Michigan do not count half - that's worse than three fifths !!!!!

.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 2:29 AM | Report abuse

The Obama people show their true colors:

I will be there on Saturday, proud, black, and ready to march for Obama. I will smack with my placard any skinny cracker Clinton supporter who dares to steal this win.

It will be thousands of Obama faithful versus a couple dozen mayonnaise-licking, butter cream sucking, minivan driving, Sex and the City watching, honky pigeons!

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 2:28 AM | Report abuse

kreuz_missile


You are a complete fool and disloyal to democracy


I cant believe some of the things you say.


.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 30, 2008 2:26 AM | Report abuse

Why did we invade Iraq?

So that the world oil supply is restricted and our Oil Companies & Arms manufacturers can rake in cash..if common citizens have to suffer because of that, its collateral damage.. acceptable in war !

Posted by: TomDick&Harry | May 30, 2008 12:28 AM | Report abuse

"Obama poised to complete his STEAL of the nomination based on taking votes away from WHITES.


HILLARY NEVER SAW IT COMING."

Yeah, stealing the election by winning primaries and caucuses one after another. Hillary never saw that coming, or the fact that the full delegation of FL and MI wouldn't be seated? That the votes wouldn't count for anything? MAn, she should be really ticked at the folks responsible for disenfranchising those voters, like Harold Ickes and Terry MacAuliff. Those party elites keep screwing her over, AND SHE NEVER SAW IT COMING!

Maybe, when you're running to be the leader of the free world, this kind of lack of forsight should be the #1 disqualifier...

Posted by: kreuz_missile | May 29, 2008 10:12 PM | Report abuse

I will be there on Saturday, proud, black, and ready to march for Obama. I will smack with my placard any skinny cracker Clinton supporter who dares to steal this win.

It will be thousands of Obama faithful versus a couple dozen mayonnaise-licking, butter cream sucking, minivan driving, Sex and the City watching, honky pigeons!

Posted by: O&37th Street | May 29, 2008 8:39 PM | Report abuse

Who the heck is advising Mccain? This stunt could be a disaster for him. Why would he take a gamble like that? It is like in law where you don't ask a question you don't know the answer to.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 8:12 PM | Report abuse

It is common knowledge Obama wanted to make a trip to Iraq not long ago but the primary was a full time thing and Iraq only is an issue in the general election. He didn't need to be talking about Iraq since he and Clinton are on the same page. This will really backfire on Mccain if he was to go there with Obama. Obama will be received by the solders like a rock star and Mccain will be so up staged he will look like a fool. He will want to kill the advisor who ever suggested this stunt.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 8:09 PM | Report abuse

Correction- the most prominent Democratic political dynasty is the Kennedy family, not the Clinton family- which has only two politicians to its name.

Posted by: sfcpoll | May 29, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Thats being saved. In the general when that is rolled all those Hillary women will hate the guy.

++++++++
McCain's problem is if he ever has to talk about domestic policy. He will be in real trouble when voters learn that he wants Roe v Wade overturned http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2007-02-19-mccain-roe_x.htm
or that he opposed last year's increase in the minimum wage law. http://news.aol.com/elections-blog/2007/01/24/john-mccain-votes-to-filibuster-minimum-wage-hike/
No wonder he sticks to Iraq. Of course, his view on Iraq is not popular either.

Posted by: Hilltopper | May 29, 2008 6:43 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 8:02 PM | Report abuse

THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A RULES COMMITTEE MEETING LIKE THIS IN THE HISTORY OF THE REPUBLIC

Marriott guards ready.

Obama poised to complete his STEAL of the nomination based on taking votes away from WHITES.

HILLARY NEVER SAW IT COMING.

Hillary, a former support of affirmative action, has now come out against ALL AFFIRMATIVE ACTION PROGRAMS after realizing that she too could lose her job to a black man.

Let Florida Count

White Voters in Florida and Michigan do not count half - that's worse than three fifths !!!!!


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 7:33 PM | Report abuse

Chris:


Is it possible that it is really Obama's family which is so hostile on this board ???

***********************************


However, on many occassions I have heard Obama on the television, in a clip - and found his tone and manner offensive - attempting to tell people what they should do, what they should think - his version of right and wrong


I find it offensive.


I really don't know where you are coming up with your point.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet |
*********************************

37&O stinky homeless dude, no one cares what you think about Senator Obama. Quit p*ssing on my cousin, pig!

Posted by: M Street in Georgetown | May 29, 2008 2:33 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 6:56 PM | Report abuse

Chris:


Is it possible that it is really Obama's family which is so hostile on this board ???

***********************************


However, on many occassions I have heard Obama on the television, in a clip - and found his tone and manner offensive - attempting to tell people what they should do, what they should think - his version of right and wrong


I find it offensive.


I really don't know where you are coming up with your point.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet |
*********************************

37&O stinky homeless dude, no one cares what you think about Senator Obama. Quit p*ssing on my cousin, pig!

Posted by: M Street in Georgetown | May 29, 2008 2:33 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 6:56 PM | Report abuse


Chris:


Is it possible that it is really Obama's family which is so hostile on this board ???

***********************************

However, on many occassions I have heard Obama on the television, in a clip - and found his tone and manner offensive - attempting to tell people what they should do, what they should think - his version of right and wrong


I find it offensive.


I really don't know where you are coming up with your point.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet |
*********************************

37&O stinky homeless dude, no one cares what you think about Senator Obama. Quit p*ssing on my cousin, pig!

Posted by: M Street in Georgetown | May 29, 2008 2:33 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 6:51 PM | Report abuse

The Obama campaign has five people on here - every shift !!! The shift ends and the Obama campaign puts new people on this board


So what do you want to say ???


The Obama campaign thinks that if it is not dominating the board by mocking the other posters, something is wrong.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

McCain's problem is if he ever has to talk about domestic policy. He will be in real trouble when voters learn that he wants Roe v Wade overturned http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2007-02-19-mccain-roe_x.htm
or that he opposed last year's increase in the minimum wage law. http://news.aol.com/elections-blog/2007/01/24/john-mccain-votes-to-filibuster-minimum-wage-hike/

No wonder he sticks to Iraq. Of course, his view on Iraq is not popular either.

Posted by: Hilltopper | May 29, 2008 6:43 PM | Report abuse

Funny how most of these posts -- on a blog post about McCain -- are about Obama.

Surest sign of moral & rhetorical bankruptcy: Relentless negative campaigning

Posted by: Scott in PacNW | May 29, 2008 6:29 PM | Report abuse

The Vietcong let McCain keep his head. He can't lift his arms above his head, but he still has one.

Others in Iraq weren't and won't be so lucky.

Keep feeding the machine. Sounds like forward thinking to me.

Posted by: Redline | May 29, 2008 6:07 PM | Report abuse

Iraq: The Children's Crusade

Posted by: Billy Pilgrim | May 29, 2008 6:00 PM | Report abuse

Do you beat down or ignore your neighbors that you perceive as unfriendly, non-christian, or a threat?

Or do you confront their hate and injustice with the true tool for building peace-love and non-violent protest. It worked for Ghandi, MLK, and some in South Africa. If we refuse to engage in saber rattling and spotlight their hate and tyranny as contrary to the rights of man we serve the larger purpose and goal: international justice, peace, and security.

But they only understand the rod? Yup...just like your children.

Have we humans evolved in any way when it comes to war and diplomacy in the past 10,000 years?

Posted by: Redline | May 29, 2008 5:58 PM | Report abuse

A few questions:

Why did we invade Iraq?

Did we achieve that goal?

Can we achieve that goal?

Has the goal changed?

Can we achieve that goal?

Most importantly:

How can we end the war and get our sons and daughters out of harms way?

Is McCain asking these questions? Seeking answers?

Posted by: Redline | May 29, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

Yea Mr. Mccain we are doing real good.

=============
WASHINGTON -- The number of Army suicides increased again last year, amid the most violent year yet in both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. An Army official said Thursday that 115 troops committed suicide in 2007, a nearly 13 percent increase over the previous year's 102. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because a full report on the deaths wasn't being released until later Thursday.

About a quarter of the deaths occurred in Iraq.

The 115 confirmed deaths among active duty soldiers and National Guard and Reserve troops that had been activated was a lower number than previously feared. Preliminary figures released in January showed as many as 121 troops might have killed themselves, but a number of the deaths were still being investigated then and have since been attributed to other causes, the officials said.

Suicides have been rising during the five-year-old war in Iraq and nearly seven years of war in Afghanistan.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

It will be a great day in this country when Obama wins. Hooray for him! Down with hate!

Posted by: O&37th Street | May 29, 2008 5:36 PM | Report abuse

"The Obama campaign has five people on here - every shift !!! The shift ends and the Obama campaign puts new people on this board


So what do you want to say ???"

Actually, we were just wondering of you could post that clip that shows Obama playing the race card.

Could you? Pleeeeeease?

Posted by: DDAWD | May 29, 2008 5:27 PM | Report abuse

Chris,

I think you will find that the correct word for "direction" is "tack", not "tact".

Was that tactful enough?

Posted by: MarkInAustin | May 29, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

What will it be we are surrendering?

++++++++++++
Obama could figure out to surrender in a war we are winning.

The French usually surrender after they already lost.

Obama, the elitist, will want to get one up on the french.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 4:02 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

I need another definition, what will it be we are surrendering?

++++++++++++++++++++
Im sure the democrats and Obama could figure out a way for us to surrender to the French in Iraq.


That would work.


Pelosi and the Congressional democrats would still be funding the war though.


Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 3:42 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

We are winning, how do you define that? There is no one to beat, we are not fighting a government we are fighting an ideology. We are fighting people who don't answer to anyone. Want to see if we can win, just look back to the American Revolutionary War. No war like that is ever won by an invader. There is not even a definition of winning in this war. Americans will die there every day we are there and when we leave what happens will happen regardless how long we stay.

+++++++
Obama could figure out to surrender in a war we are winning.

The French usually surrender after they already lost.

Obama, the elitist, will want to get one up on the french.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 4:02 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: John | May 29, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse


To the poster at 4:46 PM


There are about a THOUSAND reasons not to vote for Obama


Posted by: |
********************
and? You are not going to vote for Obama - gosh golly, the tears aren't coming...the tears aren't coming...

Posted by: Anon will not be voting for Obama...story at 11 | May 29, 2008 4:55 PM | Report abuse


The Obama campaign has five people on here - every shift !!! The shift ends and the Obama campaign puts new people on this board


So what do you want to say ???


The Obama campaign thinks that if it is not dominating the board by mocking the other posters, something is wrong.

.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May
**********************
Don't look behind you, johnny paranoid...

New day...as Clinton says, if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

You make factually unsupported stupid posts (Obama and France?!?) and you are surprised that people are sweatin' you?

Posted by: To find the Obama internet campaign HQ - go left, then right, then left, then right... | May 29, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse

To the poster at 4:46 PM


There are about a THOUSAND reasons not to vote for Obama


Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

When you take an honest look at the advisors Obama has selected, his desire to meet with leaders who promote genocide and rule their nations with an iron-fist, the comparison to Carter is undeniable. When you add the fact that both men are media favorites, place much blame on the way Americans live and support increased government regulation and big government programs instead of the free-market ideas to solve America's ills, the fear that people have that an Obama Presidency would by Carter's second term, is not just a concern, but a harsh reality.


Posted by: Paul miler
*********************
You really have to stretch to find a reason not to vote for Obama, dontcha? Carter?!?!?!

Now, it's Thursday, what is McCain's position? Is it Bush's - since now he is talking to the oppressive North Korean government (aka axis of evil), or is McCain supporting or not supporting James Baker's view that diplomacy is a necessity?

Too bad your concerns were dormant during the disasterous Bush years. But for you, there is nothing like a man in a flak jacket talking tough, right? - never mind holding hands with a leader whose citizens finance or participate in terrorist plots, or fawning over a country with an oppressive regime just because we are in debt to them.

Thanks for your "honest" look

Posted by: Obama '08 | May 29, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

The Obama campaign has five people on here - every shift !!! The shift ends and the Obama campaign puts new people on this board


So what do you want to say ???

The Obama campaign thinks that if it is not dominating the board by mocking the other posters, something is wrong.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Chris,
I think you make several strong points, and I don't take issue with any of them, only counter with the fact that Obama, too, has been on the attack, and McCain must respond to the man who allegedly represents "a different kind of politics." Moreover, Obama's position on the Iraq War is exactly that, one of ideological convenience. We cannot forget that Obama delivered his famed antiwar speech in 2003 only to say that he aligns himself with Bush's Iraq War policy while running for the Senate in '04. He even went so far as to remove the text of his antiwar speech from his web site. Then, as he pivoted toward running for president a mere two years into his senate term, he retreated to his previous position, understanding that the country had turned against the war and he could not win his party's nomination with even a centrist position on the issue.

Posted by: buckybacker97 | May 29, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Obama could figure out to surrender in a war we are winning.


The French usually surrender after they already lost.


Obama, the elitist, will want to get one up on the french.

********************************
who would know better but a street that crack is whack?


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 4:02 PM


Posted by: |

Posted by: Again, 37&O street is not reposting his brilliant posts... | May 29, 2008 4:34 PM | Report abuse


Obama could figure out to surrender in a war we are winning.


The French usually surrender after they already lost.


Obama, the elitist, will want to get one up on the french.

.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 4:02 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Look, sweeties, you all know, like, that Amerika sux and, that you know, Iran is going to tell us what to do. don't blame me just because, you know, like, I was the one who said it.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse

"Obama's speech this past Saturday had a frighteningly similar "blame the people" tone as Carter's speech."

I know! Why doesn't he just pander to me??? Bush told me to support the troops by buying a DVD player. Now THAT is patriotism I can stand for.

But I usually just stay seated while watching DVDs

Posted by: DDAWD | May 29, 2008 4:11 PM | Report abuse

In an interview yesterday with the San Francisco Chronicle, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi claimed the U.S. troop surge failed to accomplish its goal. She then partially credited the success of the troop surge to "the goodwill of the Iranians," claiming that they were responsible for ending violence in the southern city of Basra.

Asked if she saw any evidence of the surge's positive impact on her May 17 trip to Iraq she responded:

Well, the purpose of the surge was to provide a secure space, a time for the political change to occur to accomplish the reconciliation. That didn't happen. Whatever the military success, and progress that may have been made, the surge didn't accomplish its goal. And some of the success of the surge is that the goodwill of the Iranians-they decided in Basra when the fighting would end, they negotiated that cessation of hostilities-the Iranians.

This is an inexcusable slander. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki brought the Sadrists militias to their knees in a month-long battle that enabled Iraq's largest Sunni bloc to rejoin the government.

Posted by: pelosi is nuts | May 29, 2008 4:06 PM | Report abuse

One of the criticisms facing Obama is his lack of foreign policy experience. Carter was under the same scrutiny during his 1976 Presidential campaign. He relied on Brezinski, Anthony Lake and his eventual Secreatary of State Cyrus Vance. Today Obama also utlizes Brezinski and Lake as well as similar minded foreign policy advisors such as Susan Rice and until recently Malley and Samantha Power, who resigned from the campaign for referring to Hillary Clinton as a Monster. The fact that she was hired by the campaign in the first place shows a dangerous lack of judgement. A judgement that is comparable to President Carter.


Obama's trust of the above mentioned policy advisors has been well documented by the "alternative/new media," so most likely I'm not telling you something you haven't heard before. However it can never be stressed enough that Carter's foreign policy was a disaster for the United States, so it must be asked until properly answered, "why would Obama want advisors who have already demonstrated incompetence under a previous administration?" Maybe Obama doesn't believe Carter's policies were detremental to the America. Does he want to once again go in that direction? America must know before election day.


If Obama's choice of advisers isn't an indication that his Presidency would be Jimmy Carter's second term, than his speech this past Saturday in Roseburg, Oregon undoubtedly was.


In July of 1979 President Carter gave a nationally televised address in which he told America that he believed the nation was facing a "crisis of confidence." His speech would later be known as his "malaise" speech.


During his Oval office conversation with America, Carter did something no President before him has done. He gave a speech that was critical of the attitude and way of life of the American people. Many accurately perceived his speech to be about a defeated America. Carter dwelled on a what he believed was a lack of faith and confidence that had overwhelmed the American people, placing more blame on them instead of the failures of his Presidency as well as the Democrat controlled House and Senate.
"I know, of course, being president, that government actions and legislation can be very important. That's why I've worked hard to put my campaign promises into law -- and I have to admit, with just mixed success," Carter said. "But after listening to the American people I have been reminded again that all the legislation in the world can't fix what's wrong with America."
Carter would go on to literally chide Americans for their lack of confidence in the country. After campaigning to restore America from the toll taken after Vietnam, Watergate and the energy crisis, he had failed and the blame was going to be placed on the people not his lack of leadership.

Obama's speech this past Saturday had a frighteningly similar "blame the people" tone as Carter's speech. While Obama still emphasizes the failures of Washington he also blames Americans for how they live their lives.
"We can't drive our SUVs and, you know, eat as much as we want and keep our homes on, you know, 72 degrees at all times, whether we're living in the desert or we're living in the tundra, and then just expect every other country is going to say OK, you know, you guys go ahead keep on using 25 percent of the world's energy, even though you only account for 3 percent of the population, and we'll be fine," Obama said.
Obama later added fear tactics in making his case that Americans have to change their lifestyle. "We are also going to have to negotiate with other countries. China, India, in particular Brazil. They are growing so fast that they are consuming more and more energy and pretty soon, if their carbon footprint even approaches ours, we're goners."

Brian Fitzpatrick senior editor at Culture and Media Institute also believes that Obama's Oregon address is comparable to Carter's "Malaise" speech. He recently wrote about the media covering up his comments blaming Americans and their way of life. Carter had also become a media darling during his 1976 Presidential campaign. The media pass Obama received in Oregon is a blatant attempt to not add credence to the argument that Obama is the Second Coming of Jimmy Carter.


When you take an honest look at the advisors Obama has selected, his desire to meet with leaders who promote genocide and rule their nations with an iron-fist, the comparison to Carter is undeniable. When you add the fact that both men are media favorites, place much blame on the way Americans live and support increased government regulation and big government programs instead of the free-market ideas to solve America's ills, the fear that people have that an Obama Presidency would by Carter's second term, is not just a concern, but a harsh reality.

Posted by: Paul miler | May 29, 2008 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Obama could figure out to surrender in a war we are winning.

The French usually surrender after they already lost.

Obama, the elitist, will want to get one up on the french.


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Aren't Press Secretaries kept out-of-the-loop intentionally? So that they do not spill sensitive info inadvertently?

I think of Pierre Salinger during the Cuban Missile Crisis: he knew squat. And that was the correct way to play it.

So, that McClellan was duped, should come as no surprise.

What I am still not certain of is this: are Bush and Cheney and their gaggle of neo-cons really this stupid (and ignorant of world history and cultures) or are they extreme Machiavellians who do not care how many tens of thousands die and how much utter destruction they've done to the American Economy (and thus, our National Security)?

Which is it for Bush/Cheney: incompetence, ignorance and stupidity of an order we've not seen in American History or an abject greed blended with a bloodlust into a satanic cocktail?

Posted by: AdrickHenry | May 29, 2008 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Trips like those taken by McCain and Clinton are mainly photo-ops that divert men and resources from the central mission. If McCain recalls much of regular duty in the military, he knows how cynical the men on the ground (and in the air) are about them. As he well knows, there is no significant information that can't be accumulated without tying up troops in celebrity security and information details, by staying on the job in Washington DC, which he hasn't been doing lately.

Posted by: Texun | May 29, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Trips like those taken by McCain and Clinton are mainly photo-ops that divert men and resources from the central mission. If McCain recalls much of regular duty in the military, he knows how cynical the men on the ground (and in the air) are about them. As he well knows, there is no significant information that can't be accumulated without tying up troops in celebrity security and information details, by staying on the job in Washington DC, which he hasn't been doing lately.

Posted by: Texun | May 29, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

"He doesn't understand the principles of Quality Management - that's where Hillary big advantage lies and that's why there will be a lot of regrets in a few years that she wasn't elected - by many of Mr. Obama's strongest supporters."

From an economics ignoramus, could you explain, please? First what quality management is and second, how Obama and McCain differ on it?

Posted by: DDAWD | May 29, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse


Im sure the democrats and Obama could figure out a way for us to surrender to the French in Iraq.


That would work.

Pelosi and the Congressional democrats would still be funding the war though.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet
********************
Are there French in Iraq we are fighting, Patton?And are they Sunni or Shiai? - oh, wait, let's ask McSame...

Posted by: sacre blue.. This street is -how you say - tres stupide!! | May 29, 2008 3:47 PM | Report abuse

As a Hillary supporter I will vote for Obama because even though he lacks experience - he probably has two good ears and he'll have a lot of good common sense people to guide him in foreign policy.

Mr. Obama's real shortcoming is one he shares with Mr. McCain. Barack doesn't seem to understand economics. He doesn't understand the principles of Quality Management - that's where Hillary big advantage lies and that's why there will be a lot of regrets in a few years that she wasn't elected - by many of Mr. Obama's strongest supporters.

As far as Asysmetric warfare goes - yes we could have overpowered our enemy at any time - this war was horribly mismanaged by Rummy and the gang that couldn't shoot straight. What will happen when we leave - and eventually we will have to leave - who knows?

Posted by: Jack | May 29, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse


To the poster at 336 I dont run from a fight


Oh you knew that already

Posted by: 37th&OStreet |
*****************
yes, I bet you kick a$$ on playstation...there are nerds shaking in their boots right now...

Posted by: Think you can take me, Independence Avenue? - 37th & O Street | May 29, 2008 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Im sure the democrats and Obama could figure out a way for us to surrender to the French in Iraq.


That would work.


Pelosi and the Congressional democrats would still be funding the war though.


Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Im sure the democrats and Obama could figure out a way for us to surrender to the French in Iraq.


That would work.


Pelosi and the Congressional democrats would still be funding the war though.


Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Conclusion - Hillary could have been tied right now - but the Superdelegates stole the election from Hillary, fearing the "riots in the streets"


OH MY !!!!


NOW you know who to blame......

Posted by: Words of Wisdom |
**************************
what a fool believes...

Posted by: pearls of wisdom | May 29, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

To the poster at 336 I dont run from a fight

Oh you knew that already


Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Can we surrender to ourselves?

Posted by: the Dems | May 29, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse


Great line

At what point will the democrats stop running ?????


(And please don't say San Francisco)

Posted by: 37th&OStreet

*********************
Really, a great line, stranger. I don't know who you are, but you are a true patriot...

Posted by: This is not 37th&O street admiring his own posts... | May 29, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

SUPERDELEGATE UPDATE - NOW YOU KNOW WHO TO BLAME


Obama was 80 superdelegates behind - now his is 38 ahead that is a swing of 118 superdelegates.

He is about 198 ahead now - so if all the superdelegates had remained frozen, Hillary would be only 80 behind now.


The Florida and Michigan delegations could have given her those 80.

Conclusion - Hillary could have been tied right now - but the Superdelegates stole the election from Hillary, fearing the "riots in the streets"

OH MY !!!!

NOW you know who to blame......

Posted by: Words of Wisdom | May 29, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

I will throw down my gauntlet and go to war in Iraq!! But first, JakeD, a kiss for good luck...

Posted by: 37th & O street | May 29, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Obama picks up his paycheck - or maybe he has direct deposit so he doesn't even have to show up on paydays either.

.

Posted by: Words of Wisdom

*************************
God, how much do you shoot up before you start typing gibberish?

Posted by: Words of Wisdom: an oxy-moron? Discuss... | May 29, 2008 3:34 PM | Report abuse

to 37th and O

Look here sweetie, I am just better than you are, so get used to it. try not to be so bitter.

I am also really smart even if I don't know any economics, history or geography.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 1:50 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

McCain is complaining that Obama has not been in Iraq in YEARS - HOW ABOUT AT HIS JOB>?

Obama has been not even been doing his job in the Senate.


Holding not hearings.


Doing very little for Illinois


Obama picks up his paycheck - or maybe he has direct deposit so he doesn't even have to show up on paydays either.

.

Posted by: Words of Wisdom | May 29, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Why are the dems so crazy about Iraq, but not Kuwait.


It makes no sense


If we cut and run from Iraq, the roadside bombers will come to Kuwait, and try to chase us out of there.


What is wrong with you people??

Germany was very restless for 5 years - if there was a problem it was dealth with very ruthlessly. We have a very gentle occupation of Iraq now, compared historically with what we have done, and what other countries have done.

AND still you whine.

bin Laden was right about the yellow, picko left wind democrats


.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 3:27 PM | Report abuse

I thought that I was the teacher. I don't like your tone CC.

Posted by: John McCain | May 29, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Every trip with full press core and almost all since he has been running for president. These were nothing more then expensive photo OP's. This type of old time phony non issue politics will beat him asa much as anything else. He needs some new ideas that do predate Reagan. Hillary discovered this. the public is not stupid and doesn't fall for contrived issues anymore. Mccain is going to have to say something that the public cares about. I don't know anyone who thinks how many times Obama has been to Iraq is a got-ya moment. It is just stupid. Lets talk about the price of gas John.


++++
Since McBush is making visiting Iraq a campaign issue...I wonder who paid for his campaign stop there? Oh WE did, you say?

PS Maybe McBush should run for President of Iraq since he seems to care so much more about them then he does us Americans.

Posted by: Becka | May 29, 2008 2:58 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Great line


At what point will the democrats stop running ?????


(And please don't say San Francisco)

Posted by: 37th&OStreet

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Since McBush is making visiting Iraq a campaign issue...I wonder who paid for his campaign stop there? Oh WE did, you say?

PS Maybe McBush should run for President of Iraq since he seems to care so much more about them then he does us Americans.

Posted by: Becka | May 29, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

Obama is trying to balance himself between general election mode against McCain and primary season mode against Hillary.

Obama responded satisfactorily, but needs to be sharper. Obama's followup comments should have centered around the testimony of Gen. Petreaus and define safety in Iraq. Obama should said that,
"Gen. Petreaus has been before Congress last month in April 2008, September 2007, and April 2007. Even though I applaud and support the tactical success American troops have had in Iraq, what does going with McCain to Iraq in bulletproof vests and being protected by dozens of US military servicepeople in armored humvees over two days prove? I guess to Sen. McCain that constitutes safety."

Posted by: AJ | May 29, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

I mock Senator Obama because I am a needle-d**k loser who has no real purpose in life. Oh wait.. I will be back - I have to shake my money maker at Cafe Le Boy. I wish I could have met Larry Craig - maybe my life would have been different. Oh well, tassles on!

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 2:42 PM | Report abuse

"dude, no one cares what you think "

Actually M street, no one cares what you think about anything. that is why we don't allow you banana republics any congressional reps.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

McCain is just marking his territory -- Iraq -- like any other old dog will do -- by pissing on it.

Reviewing the rolling photo ops of McCain's previous visits to the country, it's clearly apparent that he is kept about as far removed from the experience of the real soldiers as you can get. And neither candidate should mistake a conversation with Gen Petraeus for honest discourse about the issue either.

If the candidates want some real insights into the state of play in Iraq and the costs and consequences for American security interests at home or abroad, suggest they visit the amputees at Walter Reed Medical Center.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

At what point will the democrats stop running ?????


(And please don't say San Francisco)

Posted by: 37th&OStreet
******************************
Any time you want to take your chickensh*t a$$ over to fight for Amuuurica, please do. Otherwise, quit telling citizens how to exercise their constitutional rights, superd**k.

Posted by: Sgt Fury just opened a can of whoopa$$ on a sissy street boy | May 29, 2008 2:37 PM | Report abuse

I don't need to win PA, OH or KT. there are those other 7 states that the old feeble Mccain has forgotten joined the union since his time in school.

I can do Dean even better. he has a 50 state strategy, I have a 57 state strategy. See how impressive my intellect is. I went to Harvard you know.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

However, on many occassions I have heard Obama on the television, in a clip - and found his tone and manner offensive - attempting to tell people what they should do, what they should think - his version of right and wrong


I find it offensive.


I really don't know where you are coming up with your point.

.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet |
*********************************

37&O stinky homeless dude, no one cares what you think about Senator Obama. Quit p*ssing on my cousin, pig!

Posted by: M Street in Georgetown | May 29, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

As a Hillary supporter, it is becoming increasingly clear to me that there is no way I can vote for Obama - he has no foreign policy experience and I doubt he has any idea what he is doing.


Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

McCain doesn't come across as having a food grasp of foreign policy: Just as a bombastic Bush-disciple who wans to bomb everything in sight. His rhetoric will not play well this summer and fall.

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: matt | May 29, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Well it is all well and good that McCain complain about visiting Iraq. However, what good does it really do? This idiotic war has been going on now for 5 years and where exactly is the progress? That we have a "Green Zone" (that gets shelled nonetheless)? Give me a break! McCain's running off to Iraq where he is surrounded by basically a contingent of both private body guards, U.S. Military, and others, really means he is "seeing results in Iraq"? Come on. McCain is not out there with the soldiers on a day-to-day basis, he is on a dog and pony show. Frankly, I don't really see that Obama going to Iraq under the same conditions is going to show him what he doesn't already know. This is all puffery on the part of McCain and anyone else putting this crack pot idea forward.

Posted by: RedRat | May 29, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

My uncle worked on a kibbutz in kuwait so I know the region very well.

the reason I have not been there is I have been very busy, busy, busy you see. What with a staff that never works and not convening my congressional committee and all. and then there are all those votes of present I had to cast.


Just like global warming...I mean climate change...... the Iraq thing is settled. Move on and Kos have voted and we must leave now.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

And the results from this poll say everything. You won't believe these results!

http://www.votenic.com

Posted by: Dereck | May 29, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

OK. Let's concede that Obama made an honest mistake between Auschwitz & Buchenwald. However, would you please clarify to me, is Obama Sunni or Shia?

Posted by: Bud Curtis | May 29, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

How do you characters feel about Kuwait ??


Are we staying or going from there ???

What happens if after we leave Iraq, there are a few roadside bombs in Kuwait, are you going to run from there too ?


At what point will the democrats stop running ?????

(And please don't say San Francisco)

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

proud, you don't say a thing of substance in your response to me. Feel free to elaborate & perhaps we can have a reasonable discussion. Your first challenge is to outline your position rather than mischaracterizing mine. Thanks in advance.

Posted by: bsimon | May 29, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Contrary to what some believe on here, I agree with Chris. McCain is acting like he's the teacher (or a grandfather) and Obama is the student (or the grandson). McCain said he would like to take Obama to Iraq and "educate" him about what's going on. How condescending can you get?

I agree Obama should go back (without McCain and when he wants to), but just because he hasn't been there since 2006 doesn't make him naive or "out of touch". He's been to Iraq hearings. McCain is playing the same politics we've seen in the last years. Thats the difference between McCain and Obama. Past vs. Future.

Posted by: Alexis | May 29, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Why is it so hard for people to post comments Germain to the story? this place becomes a copy and paste heaven.Garbage is repeated and repeated. Any Gaffes by the current candidates that are running pale in comparison to the moron in office now. I am a democrat, and would take McCain over Bush any day. I uses to like Hillary, but lately she is getting boring.Obama is young, but I feel he can do a fair/good job.He can't be any worse than what we have now, and will probably do a lot better. If he is too young, than McCain is too old, and Hillary is too decisive.

Posted by: AntiIgnorance | May 29, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Offered a one-day reversal of his gauzy position toward Iran (toward Syria, Cuba, Venezuela, and North Korea as well). In Oregon he said Iran and the others "don't pose a serious threat to us." The next day, in Montana, he said: "I've made it clear for years that the threat from Iran is grave."


Stayed tuned, I've already answered like 8 questions today. My staff must have messed this one up. tomorrow I will clarify. and again the day after.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

I don't let my staff work because that is tradition in the Democrat union rules. also, whenever anything, and I mean even the littlest thing goes wrong, it is my staff that caused it.

As you know, I am incapable of fault. even if it seems like I am winging it, it is because I am so gifted, I can. I am that good. too bad you aren't. go back to your guns and gods.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 1:58 PM | Report abuse

"The goal is still - whomever is President - to get out of Iraq without leaving a catastrophe behind."


bsimon, For a second, there, I thought you had come to your senses. But, I see that your anti-war left-leaning tendencies have overruled after all.

The matter of leaving Iraq is a foregone conclusion...everyone acknowledges that we cannot stay at full strength indefinitely, nor would that be desirable. For Obama to continue to rely on his "against the war from the beginning" posture, displays a reckless tendency with our military and our stragegic interests that I am not willing to overlook.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 29, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

There have been many signs of his gaffability. For instance, he has been caught at least twice claiming -- as he did in Selma, Ala., a year ago -- that his "very existence" was the result of a Kennedy-funded program that airlifted his father from Kenya to America. His father arrived in a 1959 airlift. The Kennedy family grant actually was made for a second airlift in 1960. Also in Selma, he claimed to be born "because of what happened in Selma, Ala., because some folks are willing to march across a bridge." The march took place in 1965. Obama was born in 1961. A year ago, he smugly observed: "In case you missed it, this week there was a tragedy in Kansas. Ten thousand people died." He was off by 9,988 casualties. More recently, he has claimed he's campaigned in 57 states. During a know-it-all assessment of the Bush administration's Iraq policy, he blundered into saying that the Iraqis and Afghans speak the same language

but beleive me when I tell you, bush is the one who says dumb things.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

some very bizarre happenings began to haunt the Obama campaign in April. The candidate -- taking his breakfast in a Scranton, Pa., eatery -- was asked by a reporter for his reaction to a meeting former President Jimmy Carter had just concluded with a thug from Hamas. Clearly annoyed, Sen. Barack Obama refused to answer the question. In a word, he waffled. Worse, he actually was eating a waffle -- a Belgian waffle. It was not even an American waffle. That is not the only bizarre element in this story. Despite all his vaunted political acumen, the front-runner for the Democratic nomination actually blurted out to the nonplussed reporter: "Why can't I just eat my waffle? Just let me eat my waffle."


everyone let Kerry waffle all he wanted, why can't I?

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Do you want a president who knows the difference between Sunni & Shia, or a president who knows the difference between Auschwitz & Buchenwald?

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

"For some strange reason, Obama seems allergic to having his staff perform even the most basic fact-checking.


http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/015/150jyxzw.asp"

Wow, the Weekly Standard is being critical of others for getting facts wrong? When was the last time they got something RIGHT?

Posted by: DDAWD | May 29, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

to 37th and O

Look here sweetie, I am just better than you are, so get used to it. try not to be so bitter.

I am also really smart even if I don't know any economics, history or geography.

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

McCain has made a habit of coming across like a man who doesn't know what he's talking about [regarding the Sunni & Shia]. That's bothersome enough, but what's more worrisome still is how comfortable he is with not knowing what he's talking about, and how convinced he seems that his bellicose rhetoric will obscure his ignorance.

Posted by: bsimon | May 29, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Last week, Mr. Obama delivered a victory speech having just lost Kentucky by a 2-1 margin to Hillary Clinton. The week before, he lost West Virginia by similar margin. Before that he lost Ohio and Pennsylvania.

For a party so eager to get back into the White House, the Obama nomination is a curious move.

I look forward to a similar "victory" speech in november.

Posted by: Ken b. | May 29, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

"You may learn something and not need to parrot someone else's incorrect information so you can sound smart. Sorry for being so blunt."


Why apologize? Being blunt is so easy when done in such a cowardly, anonymous fashion.

That doesn't, however, prevent you from being incorrect. Even my daughter, who is a history major and historical interpreter for the National Park Sevice, knew it was a glaring historical error immediately.


Obama is quite capable of parsing his way out of it, as he's done over and over since last year on many issues. The thing is, we flyovers heard it right the first time...we don't need an explanation or clarifiaction. Obama is just arrogant enough to think that we do.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 29, 2008 1:44 PM | Report abuse

To the poster at 133


who are you trying to kid ???

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Chris


I have to be honest with you - I have never found McCain's tone condescending or uppity


However, on many occassions I have heard Obama on the television, in a clip - and found his tone and manner offensive - attempting to tell people what they should do, what they should think - his version of right and wrong

I find it offensive.


I really don't know where you are coming up with your point.

.

Posted by: 37th&OStreet | May 29, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

If McCain is banking on a 'stay the course' strategy in Iraq helping him win the Presidency, he's going to be disappointed in November. One problem he's creating for himself is credibility. He says, when Democrats talk about troop withdrawls its a bad thing - artificial timelines that motivate the bad guys. But at the same time, McCain himself has set an artificial timeline of the end of his first term. OK, which is it? Likewise on the surge. Yes, Iraq is more peaceful, that is certainly positive news. Troops are coming home - also good news. But those weren't the goals of the surge. The goals were a series of metrics for measuring political prograss by the Iraqi government. There has still been almost no progress on meeting these metrics. Relative calm in Iraq is good, but if the Iraqi gov't isn't doing anything with it - what's the point? The goal is still - whomever is President - to get out of Iraq without leaving a catastrophe behind. McCain thus far hasn't demonstrated any concrete plans that differ his approach from his competitors'. Until that happens, its a bunch of hot air - and I don't think the electorate is buying it any more.

Posted by: bsimon | May 29, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Mccain is little more then a yes man and a puppet. He just wares the disguise of being straight forward and honest very well and has made a career of it. The mask will come off as this election moves on and a lot of people will be surprised what he really is. He is a phony, nothing more.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

PERONSAL TO SCOTT MCCLELLAN:

Some telltale warning signs to be on the lookout for in coming days and weeks:

1) When you and/or family members are out driving, are you being tailgated/followed by lone drivers in dark-colored SUVs/sport pickup trucks with little antennas?

2) Are strangers coming up to you to make odd, cryptic statements such as, "Can I help you? You look confused..."

3) Are you suddenly encountering lots of annoying interference on your phone calls, cell and landline, even your TV reception, whether cable or over the air? Is your internet connection running extremely slow? Is your computer increasingly unresponsive or responding in strange ways, as if you were connected to "remote computing" software? Could you swear that files stored on your computer look or read differently than you remember? Are files appearing on your computer that you swear you didn't put in there?

4) Does your mail suddenly seem to look different, like the printing was done on a color Xerox rather than traditional offset?
Do billing/bank statements suddenly look as though they were printed on inkjet printers, with uneven edges? Do listed items and balances sometimes appear to be irregular or inaccurate? When you call to inquire, does the voice on the other end sometimes seem to be unfamiliar with standard customer service routines?

5) Are the terms of your credit agreements suddenly changing against your favor, such as higher interest rates and fees? Are you being informed that account numbers, your mortgage holder, etc., are being changed?

6) When you go to the doctor or hospital, do some medical technicians and assistants make seemingly inappropriate remarks and smirk a lot?

7) Are you starting to experience aches and pains that you never had, such as sudden, sharp head pains as if you walked into the path of a "directed energy" microwave laser beam or one of those newly developed "Active Denial Systems"?

8) Does your water and some of your food suddenly start to taste funny? When you complain, or have the suspect ingestibles tested, are you told that everything's fine and "it's all in your head"?

9) Are household appliances suddenly starting to break down with unusual frequency? Do the servicemen who respond to your calls seem overly solicitous, making odd comments like, "You know, machines wear out, just like people wear out..." If you try to fix things yourself, are you repeatedly told that the parts are "out of stock"?

10) Do old, trusted friends, people who you have known to be fair and open-minded, suddenly start to shun you and won't tell you why?

If one or more of the above is starting to happen with disturbing frequency, you now know what it's like to be unjustly, illegally, and immorally targeted by rogue elements who act with extreme prejudice.

If the above starts to happen, know that you are not alone.

For a culture reference, go rent the 1998 Will Smith movie, "Enemy of the State". Sometimes Hollywood scriptwriters know more about what's really going on than former White House press secretaries.

Posted by: Remember Segretti | May 29, 2008 1:30 PM | Report abuse

I find it curious that a man who was duped into sending our finest into battle is lecturing another claiming that he lacks judgement and shows naivety, if anything the opposite is true.

I would also recommend to McCain that he get his facts straight about the difference between Sunni's and Shiites before he criticizes Obama for his Auchwitz gaffe.

For a guy who's visited Iraq 8 times he ought to know the situation on the ground a lot better, like, who's training who.

He made this mistake not once but twice, the 2nd time on the Senate floor during the recent Iraq hearings.

Posted by: JR | May 29, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

Obama has made a habit of coming across like a man who doesn't know what he's talking about. That's bothersome enough, but what's more worrisome still is how comfortable he is with not knowing what he's talking about, and how convinced he seems that his rhetorical flourishes will obscure his ignorance. That strategy may work on the campaign trail, but it certainly won't help him govern.

You add it all up, and you got a guy who despite his high cognitive abilities doesn't know what one needs to know to be president.

Jimmy Carter was also "a bright guy," but as a president and a free-lancing ex-president, his naivete and arrogance made him a functional dunce.

If Obama really thinks the lesson to be gleaned from the Cuban Missile Crisis is that a president should always sit down with our enemies, then perhaps the same could be said of him.


http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/015/150jyxzw.asp?pg=2


Now that Carter has taken to divulging Isreali state secrets, why hasn't his young protege', Obama, denounced such treasonous behavior? He wouldn't want to offend Hamas, now would he?

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 29, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

There was a lot of political BS going on back then. There were in fact Americans with them and it could have been true although the family story got twisted as family stories have a way of doing. Americans would often sit outside of cities after fighting just so a different army could get the credit of taking the city and being first to enter it. There was nothing at all wrong with Obamas story other then he thought it was another camp, that as I said, there were Americans there at the time. He had no reason to not think the family story was not accurate. Sort of like you repeating something you thought you knew because you were copying what you read by someone else. You need to do a little study of the second world war. You may learn something and not need to parrot someone else's incorrect information so you can sound smart. Sorry for being so blunt.

+++++++++
The mangling of facts by Obama in his Wesleyan address isn't a lie, just another misstatement and another surprising sign of Obama's historical ignorance.

The facts that Auschwitz was in Eastern Europe and that Eastern Europe was the Soviets' theatre aren't exactly obscure historical data-points. One would expect the typical "Jeopardy!" contestant to know as much, and one would certainly expect a presidential candidate who is basing his campaign in no small measure on his vaunted (and purportedly un-Bushian) intelligence to know it, too. And yet such things keep happening.


Yeah, Obama's a bright guy (Joe Biden even said so)...
But the time has come to be more precise with our terms. Yes, Obama undeniably has a high level of cognitive ability. But it's becoming increasingly apparent that he either has read few books or retained very little from the books he read.

Either that or he's spent his time reading books that don't help him understand history and won't help him carry out his tasks as president.

Worse still, Obama seems to have a vague sort of arrogance that prohibits him from acknowledging what he doesn't know. If I were going to shoot my mouth off on WWII or the Cuban Missile Crisis with the world watching, I'd make sure I had my facts straight before I did so.

For some strange reason, Obama seems allergic to having his staff perform even the most basic fact-checking.


http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/015/150jyxzw.asp

The country may not like a curmudgeon, but they haven't shown a propensity for electing arrogant liberals to the highest office, either.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 29, 2008 1:15 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

I guess they don't teach history, geography or economics at that Ivy league school. Even a public school drop out knows that the US has 57 states, that Poland was behind Russian lines in WW2 and that taxes raise prices.

but not the wonder boy.

Posted by: say what? | May 29, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

OK, I changed my mind as I like to do. I will consider going to Iraq after all, not it's not because John McCain chastized me. Even though I am very thin-skinned and I think everyone is always talking about me, when mentioned by name, I ignore the dialog.

In fact, I am capable of listening for 20 years without hearing. Even with these enormous ears. And I still don't hear that Amajornutjob wants to kill us and Israel. After I meet with him and offer him anything he wants if he will just like us, I will listen for a clue. Until then, we always have hope and I promise to leave you some change in your paycheck .

Posted by: snObama | May 29, 2008 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Well Chris Obama is not ready - not sure if he will ever be ready


Posted by: OK | May 29, 2008 1:21 PM | Report abuse

The evil Hillary had the best in the business working on it and could not find anything on the guy. If that old crap is all you have we have a pretty good candidate. Give it up the guy is a good guy like it or not.

+++++++++
The Rev. Wright affair is just one instance where the Illinois senator has said something wrong or offensive, and then offered shifting explanations for his views. Consider flag pins.

Mr. Obama told an Iowa radio station last October he didn't wear an American flag lapel pin because, after 9/11, it had "became a substitute for I think true patriotism, which is speaking out on issues . . . ." His campaign issued a statement that "Senator Obama believes that being a patriot is about more than a symbol." To highlight his own moral superiority, he denigrated the patriotism of those who wore a flag.

Yet by April, campaigning in culturally conservative Pennsylvania, Mr. Obama was blaming others for the controversy he'd created, claiming, "I have never said that I don't wear flag pins or refuse to wear flag pins. This is the kind of manufactured issue that our politics has become obsessed with and, once again, distracts us . . . ." A month later Mr. Obama was once again wearing a pin, saying "Sometimes I wear it, sometimes I don't."

Posted by: Karl R | May 29, 2008 1:14 PM

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 1:18 PM | Report abuse

The Obama revision tour has been seen elsewhere. Last July, Mr. Obama pledged to meet personally and without precondition, during his first year, the leaders of Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba and North Korea. Criticized afterwards, he made his pledge more explicitly, naming Iranian President Ahmadinejad and Venezuela strongman Hugo Chávez as leaders he would grace with first-year visits.

By October, Mr. Obama was backpedaling, talking about needing "some progress or some indication of good faith," and by April, "sufficient preparation." It got so bad his foreign policy advisers were (falsely) denying he'd ever said he'd meet with Mr. Ahmadinejad - even as he still defended his original pledge to have meetings without precondition.

The list goes on. Mr. Obama's problem is a campaign that's personality-driven rather than idea-driven. Thus incidents calling into question his persona and character can have especially devastating consequences.

Stripped of his mystique as a different kind of office seeker, he could become just another liberal politician - only one who parses, evades, dissembles and condescends. That narrative is beginning to take hold. If those impressions harden into firm judgments, Mr. Obama will have a very difficult time in November.

Posted by: Karl R | May 29, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

The mangling of facts by Obama in his Wesleyan address isn't a lie, just another misstatement and another surprising sign of Obama's historical ignorance.

The facts that Auschwitz was in Eastern Europe and that Eastern Europe was the Soviets' theatre aren't exactly obscure historical data-points. One would expect the typical "Jeopardy!" contestant to know as much, and one would certainly expect a presidential candidate who is basing his campaign in no small measure on his vaunted (and purportedly un-Bushian) intelligence to know it, too. And yet such things keep happening.


Yeah, Obama's a bright guy (Joe Biden even said so)...
But the time has come to be more precise with our terms. Yes, Obama undeniably has a high level of cognitive ability. But it's becoming increasingly apparent that he either has read few books or retained very little from the books he read.

Either that or he's spent his time reading books that don't help him understand history and won't help him carry out his tasks as president.

Worse still, Obama seems to have a vague sort of arrogance that prohibits him from acknowledging what he doesn't know. If I were going to shoot my mouth off on WWII or the Cuban Missile Crisis with the world watching, I'd make sure I had my facts straight before I did so.

For some strange reason, Obama seems allergic to having his staff perform even the most basic fact-checking.


http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/015/150jyxzw.asp

The country may not like a curmudgeon, but they haven't shown a propensity for electing arrogant liberals to the highest office, either.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 29, 2008 1:15 PM | Report abuse

The Rev. Wright affair is just one instance where the Illinois senator has said something wrong or offensive, and then offered shifting explanations for his views. Consider flag pins.

Mr. Obama told an Iowa radio station last October he didn't wear an American flag lapel pin because, after 9/11, it had "became a substitute for I think true patriotism, which is speaking out on issues . . . ." His campaign issued a statement that "Senator Obama believes that being a patriot is about more than a symbol." To highlight his own moral superiority, he denigrated the patriotism of those who wore a flag.

Yet by April, campaigning in culturally conservative Pennsylvania, Mr. Obama was blaming others for the controversy he'd created, claiming, "I have never said that I don't wear flag pins or refuse to wear flag pins. This is the kind of manufactured issue that our politics has become obsessed with and, once again, distracts us . . . ." A month later Mr. Obama was once again wearing a pin, saying "Sometimes I wear it, sometimes I don't."

Posted by: Karl R | May 29, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

But other, much more troubling, episodes have provided a revealing glimpse into a candidate who instinctively resorts to parsing, evasions and misdirection. The saga over Rev. Jeremiah Wright is Exhibit A. In just 62 days, Americans were treated to eight different explanations.

First, on Feb. 25, Mr. Obama downplayed Rev. Wright's divisiveness, saying he was "like an old uncle who sometimes will say things that I don't agree with." A week later, Mr. Obama insisted, "I don't think my church is actually particularly controversial," suggesting that Rev. Wright was criticized because "he was one of the leaders in calling for divestment from South Africa and some other issues like that."

The issue exploded on March 13, when ABC showed excerpts from Rev. Wright's sermons. Mr. Obama's spokesman said the senator "deeply disagrees" with Rev. Wright's statements, but "now that he is retired, that doesn't detract from Sen. Obama's affection for Rev. Wright or his appreciation for the good works he has done."

The next day, Mr. Obama offered a fourth defense: "The statements that Rev. Wright made that are the cause of this controversy were not statements I personally heard him preach while I sat in the pews of Trinity or heard him utter in private conversation." Mr. Obama also told the Chicago Tribune, "In fairness to him, this was sort of a greatest hits. They basically culled five or six sermons out of 30 years of preaching."

Then, four days later, in Philadelphia, Mr. Obama finally repudiated Rev. Wright's comments, saying they "denigrate both the greatness and the goodness of our nation." But Mr. Obama went on to say, "I can no more disown him than I can my white grandmother. . . ."

Ten days later, Mr. Obama said if Rev. Wright had not retired as Trinity's pastor, and "had he not acknowledged that what he had said had deeply offended . . . then I wouldn't have felt comfortable staying there at the church." (Never mind that Rev. Wright had made no such acknowledgment.)

On April 28, at the National Press Club, Rev. Wright re-emerged - not to apologize but to repeat some of his most offensive lines. This provoked an eighth defense: "[W]hatever relationship I had with Rev. Wright has changed, as a consequence of this. I don't think that he showed much concern for me. More importantly, I don't think he showed much concern for what we are trying to do in this campaign . . . ." Self-interest is a powerful, but not noble, sentiment in politics.

Posted by: Karl R | May 29, 2008 1:14 PM | Report abuse

By the way, where is your in depth piece on Mr. Gramm - John McCain's chief economist putting forth his economic policies, yes the very same guy who worked for one of the largest European banks, USB which is behind the mortgage melt-down in the US... where is your article about this man, who years ago in Congress was instrumental in passing the bill to de-regulate banking procedures, again one of the reasons for our economic woes. Why is this man not highlighted as one of the greatest threat to the American economy?

Why for God's sake, is this VITAL information not out there on the 24/7 loop.

Posted by: Nerakami | May 29, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

FlownOver:

When I inferred that Obama was the weakest Dem, I was not indicating that I favor Hillary. I want Hillary to throw her delegates to Al Gore rather than take her fight to the convention and further destroy the party. I still think McCain's strategy right now is to do everything he can to elevate Obama's profile and make it harder for the supers to see the light.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

There seems to be a disconnect somewhere in John McCain's Iraq statements. During a speech in Denver, he stated "I will never surrender in Iraq". A strange statement considering it is my understanding that we are fighting along with the elected Iraqi government. He seems to be equating the fight against terrorists and insurgents in a civil war as similar to a battle in WWII. Someone needs to tell him that it is the Iraqi's country, and that its theirs to win or lose, not ours.

Posted by: envirossf | May 29, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Here's what is painfully obvious....

McCain continues to pound out speech after stump speech about Iraq, simply because he knows SQUAT about the economy and other pressing issues. So the louder he speaks about Iraq, the more deafening it is becoming to us pointing squarely to his absolute lack of knowledge about the devastating issues facing Americans. Keep it up McCain, the more you shout, the clearer the picture becomes...

Posted by: nerakami | May 29, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

It strikes me (no pun intended) that McCain does not always have control of his temper (as a result, tone).

Here's a question for you Chris: I liken the White House Press Corps' silence (or compliance) on Iraq and the lead up to the war to the current press' treatment of John "Maverick" McCain who, by all accounts, is extremely popular and rarely challenged by reporters. Will this lead to another free pass for a republican? Your thoughts on this?

Posted by: Karen H | May 29, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Scriv:

More likely, McCain shares at least a limited grasp of reality with most of the rest of the world. Get a grip, before HRC's death march takes down other Democrats with it.

Posted by: FlownOver | May 29, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

McCain acts like a teacher with tenor.
If my experience with teachers who have tenor is any example, they are not up on the latest teaching methods, don't use the newest tools and are out of touch with current events...

One thing I agree with George Bush on, the president is the decision maker.
The staff and advisers are part of what a good president.
Look at the current candidates and their campaign staffs. Realize that many from the winners campaign staffs will be in the administration in some form. Now judge which candidate you want for president.

Posted by: Richard in Bellevue, WA | May 29, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

dt, Funny thing about those stubborn facts on the ground...the average American seems to realize that there are good things happening in Iraq, positive change, real results in bettering people's lives - but we never get that message from the media. While on vaca last week, i traveled to several fly-over states, and consistently heard from 'average Americans' the lament that all we get from the MSM is bad news.

Since most of the media is left-leaning, do you suppose this is a coincidence? Sad to say, bad news for America is good news for liberals. Obama included.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | May 29, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

So, how many Americans died last month? I guess they don't count.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Mccain has been going back and forth over there, putting the people around him who have to guard him in added danger. Disrupting the day to day functions while he is in an area, on the publics dime by the way and for what. Nothing more then a photo op. Funny he travels with a complete press core when he is there.
I would say Jay Leno and Letterman who have both been there a dozen time without any fanfare are more sincere, then a phony politician like Mccain. I will say the more they do things like this the better. It adds to the importance and relevance of Obama. Mccains PR people must be secretly on the Obama payroll.

Who ever on the Mccain team came up with this one must be the same ones who came up the the gas holiday idea that blew up in their faces. I don't think Obama has much to worry about with the Mccain team looking like the Three Stooges as far as campaign ideas go.

Posted by: Anonymous | May 29, 2008 12:35 PM | Report abuse

When a politician visits Iraq, he's accompanied by a heavily-armed entourage, and brought to only the best and safest places. How does that give an accurate picture of the conditions on the ground in Iraq? A couple of years ago, some Republican Congressman rhapsodized about how a market in Baghdad is as safe as a market in Nebraska. Was that accurate?

So McCain claims that you can only learn about what's going on in Iraq by visiting the fortified Green Zone in Baghdad. And that a visit to the Green Zone will prove that we need to keep our troops in Iraq. These assertions are ridiculous. But CC doesn't refute them; he just discusses whether they're strategically the right thing for McCain to say. Congratulations, CC; you're part of the problem.

Posted by: Blarg | May 29, 2008 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Chris:

Could it be that McCain's main strategy right now isn't so much to criticize Obama's lack of experience or his positions -- but to use the story line to paint Obama as the inevitable Democratic nominee?

Could it be that you are being used, and it's working? That McCain's immediate strategy is to ensure that the weakest Democrat appear to be the inevitable nominee?

Once again, Chris, I fear the mainstream media doesn't realize when it's being played.

Just for you to repeat the line that Obama is the "almost-certain" nominee shows that McCain has won this news cycle... and you have assisted in the alley-oop.

McCain has months and months to argue his case against whomever receives the Dem nomination. That's not his immediate goal. Helping reinforce the notion that Obama already has won the nomination -- that's his goal... and playing the DC press corps like a fiddle to do it.

Posted by: scrivener | May 29, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

dt - I wonder why it is then that even today, news announcements indicate more bombings and civilians killed...Why isn't more done to point out that it's not the surge that's reduced violence but a fragile truce with Sadr's militia?

Posted by: Irishspacemonk | May 29, 2008 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Hey dt-

That's great! Now that "...there isn't even a war going on in the rest of the country..." I guess that it's time to bring the troops home.

Let's start next week.

Posted by: Wirro | May 29, 2008 12:07 PM | Report abuse

"were typical of the tact he has taken on the issue."

Tact = diplomacy
Tack = direction

Posted by: Margin | May 29, 2008 11:54 AM | Report abuse

I know a couple of Marines, who'd had two tours in Iraq, who had to visit Baghdad to testify about some POWs they captured. They said the city's incredible now--it's like there isn't even a war going on in the rest of the country. Granted, it could've just been in the civil and municipal regions of the city, which have the highest security, but it was a pretty powerful anecdote.

Posted by: dt | May 29, 2008 11:54 AM | Report abuse

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