Saturday Morning Post-DebateI'm reminded of that song by Mary J. Blige called "No More Drama" when I think back about McCain's posturing throughout the week. Think back with me, day by day.
Like yesterday ... his silly HELL NO I WON'T GO attitude and threats about not participating in the first presidential debate at U of Mississippi was very obnoxious; it was disrespectful to all those involved in setting up the event at Old Miss. Then the day before with his dashing into Congress and messing things up just as they were close to an agreement, thanks John! And finally, his odd flailing around earlier in the week, first suspending his campaign, then not suspending his campaign. When I think about the winner or loser of the debate, it's hard for me to forget all this context. Is this his much mentioned beloved maverick behavior ... or is it just pointless histrionics? And all this phony drama from McCain when REAL financial collapse threatened the US economy, I found it really disturbing.
I was so tired of his theatrics even BEFORE the debate started, it was hard for me to calm down and just listen to him. I did try to listen. But all I could hear was the voice of an old man mentioning again and again, I was there, I have experience, back in 1983 when me and Reagan did this or that. It felt too much like listening to Grandpa Simpson. It only played up his advancing age and his "more of the same" Republican administration leanings to my mind.
This "I'm old and experienced" tone had a subtext of "you're a dumb puppy who doesn't know squat" in an election year where the old and experienced Republican administrations we've suffered through for 8 years (think Rumsfeld, Cheney and other Republican retreads) are just about destroying this country before our very eyes. The brand new shiny "I embrace change" McCain is an oxymoron if you ask me. (Did I say OXYmoron?)
But what really got me going last night was this weird posture McCain took towards Obama. It was all like a very embarrassing Thanksgiving dinner where the old farts are trying to tell the young turks what a bunch of idiots they are. Or worse ...
McCain had the most snotty, dismissive, elite attitude towards Obama ... repeating "he doesn't understand" and having this patronizing tone like he's just some dumb black servant here at the mansion, he didn't mean to spill soup on you when he served you ... pay no attention to him ... Jeez, and all of this taking place in Mississippi, at the historic location where the color barrier was broken. It really got me crazy. And Obama being so polite toward him, looking at McCain in a respectful way, and McCain NEVER showing him the least respect, or even looking at him, like he wasn't worthy of the slightest glance.
And stepping back again, many have said it was a "draw" but I think it reverberated across generational lines in strange ways ... McCain seemed to be saying to younger Americans, "no, no, you can't run this big complicated country, put your iPod earbuds back in and go hang out at the skateboard park, you're not needed here." And all I could think in response was "sure, we need an experienced Republican like you, a real fighter pilot, to slam this plane, currently in a death spiral, right into the ground."