Thursday, August 07, 2008

B**ch Slappers and the McCain Ad

Here is Maureen Dowd’s b**ch slap on McCain: First, Dowd cites, without mentioning a name, one of McCain’s “old pals in the senate,” who cringes “at what they (sic) see as his soulless transformation into what he once scorned.” The quoted portion here is Dowd’s gloss on what was said by the anonymous “they,” who is not quoted on this point directly.

Could it be that “they,” the source upon which Dowd hangs her vituperation, is one of his former Democrat pals in the senate who now support Barack Obama?

Some of the lights of the Democrat Party are featured in the new McCain ad that appeared after Ms. Dowd’s column was in print.

“He can work with Democrats on Key issues. Whether it’s campaign reform or tobacco policy, he’s worked with us” – Tom Daschle

“John McCain is a great friend, a personal friend, and I would be honored to run with or against John McCain” -- Sen. Joe Biden

“I have enormous respect for him. He is a courageous, patriotic American who stands up for what he believes” – Sen. John Kerry

“I admire Sen. McCain greatly, and he’s one of the people we’ve modeled our campaign on, because he is very direct, very blunt, and no one has to guess at what he’s thinking” – Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean

“I know that Sen. McCain has a lifetime of experience he will bring to the White House, and Sen. Obama has a speech he gave in 2002 – Sen. Hillary Clinton

Now that Sen. Clinton has made the transition from primary opponent to Obama supporter in the general election, she is bound to have second thoughts. But the other Democrats quoted above seemed to have offered their testimonials without much arm twisting.

In her column, Dowd quotes the “pal” she mentioned directly: “John’s eaten up with envy… His image of himself was always the handsome, celebrity flyboy. Now somebody else is the celebrity.”

And this is followed by another Dowd gloss on the pal’s comments: … “the colleague continued, while John looks in the mirror and sees his face marred by skin cancer and looks at the TV and sees his dashing self-image replaced by visions of William Frawley, with Letterman jokes about his membership in the ham radio club and adventures with wagon trains.”

In this kind of reporting, one hardly knows were the “old pal” ends and Dowd begins.

But the point of the column is to riff exaggeratedly on what may have been – we’ll never know because the source is not named, and no one can check – a fairly innocuous comment by someone – or no one – who claims to be close to McCain.

The McCain ad, the precipitating cause of Dowd’s bi**ch slapping column, which pokes fun at Obama’s light-headedness, never approaches this level of juvenilia.

Ms.Hilton’s ad is refreshingly free of hard analysis. Unlike Obama, Ms. Hilton seems comfortable with her persona. One cannot imagine her writing a book in which she struggles to find and put on a suitable identity. Like any great piece of art, Ms. Hilton is exactly what she appears to be.

Entirely in character, she refers to McCain as “that wrinkly white guy” and proposes her own solution to the energy crisis: a hybrid of views presented by Obama and McCain that would involve opening new oil resources in combination with other solutions to the crisis popular with environmentalists and the editorial board of the New York Times.

Ms. Hilton does not seem to understand that she has proposed not a hybrid of views but precisely the plan of the wrinkly white guy.

But one does not expect a trenchant analysis from hotel heiresses.

Ms. Dowd, on the other hand, is a sorry disappointment. From those to whom much is given, much should be expected.

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