Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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July 31, 2008
By: Kevin Drum

JOHN McCAIN'S "PALPABLE PAIN"....From Todd Purdum's profile of John McCain in Vanity Fair today:

But irrepressible candor has always been McCain's irresistible force, and its embers still burn bright. In Sparks, Nevada, this week, when a grouchy older man responded to McCain's support for an immigrant guest-worker program by saying the United States needed to reform its child-labor laws to let young Anglo-Saxon American farm kids learn the value of hard work, McCain stubbornly responded that he still favored the guest-worker initiative.

That's it? McCain disagreed with some crotchety old coot who wants to throw out our child labor laws so that more white kids can work in the fields? And then followed up by — stop the presses! — not flip-flopping on a signature position he's held for years? The bar for "irrepressible candor" sure is getting low these days.

Kevin Drum 12:53 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (24)

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Comments

good boy, Purdum! there's a couple of extra ribs waiting for you at the next McCain Press BBQ !

Posted by: cleek on July 31, 2008 at 1:03 PM | PERMALINK

"A grouchy older man"? I'll bet he wasn't older or grouchier than McCain.

Posted by: The Confidence Man on July 31, 2008 at 1:04 PM | PERMALINK

"Anglo-Saxon Americans"?

Show me someone who can trace their ancestry to fifth-century tribes, and I'll show you a liar.
.

Posted by: Grand Moff Texan on July 31, 2008 at 1:15 PM | PERMALINK

So, is it news that Vanity Fair runs puff-pieces?

Posted by: Shelby on July 31, 2008 at 1:23 PM | PERMALINK

When you pair this VF article with the one he wrote about Bill Clinton, it appears that Purdum is well on his way to Village membership.

Posted by: mrstrailerco on July 31, 2008 at 1:24 PM | PERMALINK

Irrepressible candor? Seems more like irrepressible pique to me.

Posted by: Cal Gal on July 31, 2008 at 1:36 PM | PERMALINK

Wow, he stubbornly supports a program that feeds cheap labor to corporations! By God, he IS a maverick!

Posted by: sullijan on July 31, 2008 at 1:36 PM | PERMALINK

John McCain spent years in Vietnam as a POW while you all were smoking dope and having promiscuous sex. That entitles him to set the bar for irrepressible candor wherever the hell he wants!

Posted by: Likely Voter on July 31, 2008 at 1:39 PM | PERMALINK

The great man must be praised! It's hard pundit law!

Posted by: Not Bob Somerby on July 31, 2008 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

Isn't it weird that a candidate whose wife is a skinny blonde multimillionaire airheaded heiress should criticize his opponent by comparing him to a... skinny blonde multimillionaire airheaded heiress?

Posted by: lampwick! on July 31, 2008 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

Recommendation: read the rest of the Purdum piece on McCain. It's short, and this item aside it is not particularly flattering.

Posted by: alkali on July 31, 2008 at 2:07 PM | PERMALINK

Meanwhile, Editor & Publisher shows us the pundits no less about politics than we imagined.

Last November, the magazine asked political savants from the Times, the Post, the Chicago Tribune, LA Times and Boston Globe for their informed predictions on who would win the respective presidential nominations.

None picked Obama. One picked McCain. And all five said Iraq would be the central campaign theme.

How do you get a paying job like that?

Posted by: Dave In Texas on July 31, 2008 at 2:42 PM | PERMALINK

It never ceases to baffle how the media can't grasp something most of us learned by age 5 or so. If someone has to constantly tell you they are giving you straight talk, they're doing anything but. If they were telling it straight, it would speak for itself.

Posted by: Gary on July 31, 2008 at 2:52 PM | PERMALINK

My friends, I'm going to fuck you.

Now, I know all the good, profitable fucking has been done over these last eight years, but there are still a few nooks and crannies that haven't been fucked yet. Some of my friends in the press are going to take a turn, too. I know you don't mind, heck, you don't even know we're fucking you. Yee-haw!

This might hurt, a little.

Posted by: John McCain on July 31, 2008 at 3:38 PM | PERMALINK

Great, he's against repealing the Child Labor Laws. I wonder what he would have said if the guy wanted to start killing Indians again.

Posted by: tomeck on July 31, 2008 at 4:38 PM | PERMALINK

Purdum says:

He is well advised to be worried about peaking too soon; the strong finish is his stock-in-trade.

In order to "peak too soon," don't you have to (you know) peak?

Posted by: TreeTop on July 31, 2008 at 7:05 PM | PERMALINK

When I was teenager, I picked up a few extra bucks in the summer working on farms when it was time to "make" hay and straw. It was indeed hard work - in fact, it was downright miserable. From the vantage point of four decades later, I am hard-pressed to see any particular "value" in the experience, except the memory of how wonderful beer tasted when we laid in the field after we were done.

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