McCain lies vs. McCain senility

by lestro

Those are the only options.

Last night in the debate, McCain returned to the topic of earmarks, delivering this:

Denouncing government spending, he tossed in an example. “You know, we spent $3 million to study the DNA of bears in Montana,” he said. “I don’t know if that was a criminal issue or a paternal issue,” he joked, but so rapidly that some viewers might have been confused, or wondered if the candidate was.

There are two problems with what he said. First, there’s this, from a Factcheck.org article last year:

Despite the fun McCain had ridiculing the bear project on the Senate floor, he didn’t actually try to remove it from the bill. He did introduce several amendments, including three to reduce funding for projects he considered wasteful or harmful, but none removing the grizzly bear project appropriations. And despite his criticisms, he voted in favor of the final bill.

The article also includes a discussion of the Bridge to Nowhere, noting McCain’s opposition, and his failure to show up to vote on whether to divert the Bridge to Nowhere money to New Orleans following Katrina.  The attempt to divert the money to Katrina aid failed.

Instead, Congress removed Gravina’s earmarks, tossing that money into Alaska’s general transportation pot to be used however the state chose. McCain wasn’t there for that vote, either.

In light of the furor over the “bridge to nowhere,” Alaska’s governor opted to use the money for other pursuits. The bridge was never built, but McCain has been using it as his prime pork example since 2005, even blaming it for the Minneapolis bridge collapse in August 2007. (He cited it as an example of a pet project that diverted money from necessary highway maintenance.)

Which brings us to his running mate. During the debate, McCain once again returned to a theme of experience – seeming to forget that his running mate is supposed to be qualified to take over should something happen to the president – but why would he mention the Bear DNA study when Sarah Palin made a similar request?

Palin, meanwhile, has requested $3.2 million to be spent in part researching the “genetics of harbor seals,” in one of the state’s many requests for federal funding of research into Alaska’s fauna.

So what else did Sarah Palin request your tax money for?

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The laws of nature vs. debate body language

by lestro

Was John McCain the alpha male or the low-ranking monkey?

It is generally agreed that John McCain did not look at or address Barack Obama at all during the first presidential debate. But different folks saw it in different ways.

Conservative columnist David Broder saw it like this:

That suggests an imbalance in the deference quotient between the younger man and the veteran senator — an impression reinforced by Obama’s frequent glances in McCain’s direction and McCain’s studied indifference to his rival.

Whether viewers caught the verbal and body-language signs that Obama seemed to accept McCain as the alpha male on the stage in Mississippi, I do not know.

A primatologist writing to Talking Points Memo saw it from a different angle:

I think people really are missing the point about McCain’s failure to look at Obama. McCain was afraid of Obama. It was really clear–look at how much McCain blinked in the first half hour. I study monkey behavior–low ranking monkeys don’t look at high ranking monkeys. In a physical, instinctive sense, Obama owned McCain tonight and I think the instant polling reflects that.

During the debate, I saw it as McCain’s inability to look Barack Obama in the eye.

But I figured that if I had been spreading such horrible lies about someone, I wouldn’t be able to look them in the eye either.

I suppose we’ll see it in the polls soon enough.

Tell me again how John McCain isn’t part of the problem

by lestro

oh, Johnny Mac, you may not be able to lift your arms above your head, but you have proven more than adept at putting your foot in your mouth:

One of the giant mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis paid $15,000 a month to a firm owned by Senator John McCain’s campaign manager from the end of 2005 through last month, according to two people with direct knowledge of the arrangement. The disclosure contradicts a statement Sunday night by Mr. McCain that the campaign manager, Rick Davis, had no involvement with the company for the last several years. Mr. Davis’s firm received the payments from the company, Freddie Mac, until it was taken over by the government this month along with Fannie Mae, the other big mortgage lender whose deteriorating finances helped precipitate the cascading problems on Wall Street, the people said.

oops. Quick! backtrack!

They said they did not recall Mr. Davis doing much substantive work for the company in return for the money, other than speak to a political action committee composed of high-ranking employees in October 2006 on the coming midterm congressional elections.

So, they spent $15,000 a month on a guy who didn’t do anything for them? I think I am beginning to understand this fiscal crisis better.

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McCain must not understand what “change” means

by lestro

Once again, Johnny Mac is flip-flopping. This time it is on one of his own ads.

Following the backlash to McCain’s over-the-top criticism of Barack Obama for using a phrase that McCain himself used when talking about Hillary, McCain has perhaps realized that his sanctimony is showing.

Could this be the gateway meme? Is this his admission that, like Karl Rove recently said, he’s gone too far?

Did Barack Obama really call Sarah Palin a pig, as a John McCain ad leads people to believe? “No,” McCain said Monday. The Republican presidential nominee defended the ad anyway, saying Obama “chooses his words very carefully.”

But that’s not what the ad said, Johnny. You remember the ad, the one you “approved” and was put out by your campaign the next day. The ad which has been pulled from YouTube because one of the quotes it used was taken so far out of context CBS threatened to sue.

The fact is that Johnny Mac and his campaign are full of crap and they were terrified that this lipstick slander aimed at Obama was such an obvious pile of bullshit that it may become the gateway meme and people may soon realize that damn near everything they say is doublespeak and hypocrisy.

For example, the whole reformer image they have given veep nom Sarah Palin, whose blatant lies about her position on the ‘bridge to nowhere’ and anti-earmark position are also a favorite in the ‘gateway meme’ odds. Especially since having a lie exposed doesn’t stop Johnny Mac from telling it again:

He was asked about nearly $200 million in congressional pet projects Palin requested for 2009 for her state, despite her boasts that she opposes such projects and his claim that she didn’t ask for any. McCain responded by criticizing Obama for seeking more than $900 million in these earmarks, by one count.

“That’s nearly a million every day, every working day he’s been in Congress,” McCain said. “And when you look at some of the planetariums and other foolishness that he asked for, he shouldn’t be saying anything about Governor Palin.”

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an encyclopedia of McCain/Palin lies and distortion

by twit

There are so many it is getting hard to keep track.  This is a beginning of a list, and it will be updated as additional reports are collected.  Please feel free to leave additional links in the comments.

To begin, here’s a video that outlines some of the latest lies and distortions from the McCain campaign:

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“Just Say No” to Sarah Palin

by lestro

Sarah Palin will be McCain’s undoing. Period.

On Sunday, The Washington Post quoted McCain campaign manager Rick Davis as saying the FBI conducted a background check of Palin.

But Monday, the FBI told the Atlantic Monthly no such check took place.

This appears to be what we in the business call a “lie.”

“In general, we do not do vetting for political campaigns except as it might regard investigations needed for security clearances,” the magazine’s Web site quoted John Miller, the chief FBI spokesman. If the agency had conducted a security check of Palin, it wouldn’t have shared it with the campaign, the magazine said.

But why is Sarah Palin the key to the undoing of the McCain campaign?

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