Are We Better Off Overall?
This morning, I decided I needed a jolt of Morning Joe to become fully awake. One of the commercials run during this MSNBC show offered up by the Democratic National Committee directly attacks McCain's credibility. I have created a table that reasonably accurately presents what went on. All of the responses were from a single sitting -- the background is the same behind McCain. It is possible that the opening question (which I have abbreviated a tiny bit) came from that same session.
Democratic National Committee TV Commercial
Off Screen Background Question
Graphic Countering Facts
Senator McCain, Are Americans better off than they were 8 years ago?
Americans, overall, are better off; pretty good prosperous time.
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Highest Inflation In 17 years
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A lot of good things have happened
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A lot of jobs have been created
1.8 Million Jobs Lost
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I think we are better off overall
Do You Feel Better Off
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Is John McCain the Right Choice For America's Future?
The question, "Are you better off now than you were N years ago?" seems to be an effective campaign query and it can work both for an incumbent or his or her opponent. In this case, we have neither. However, McCain, perhaps making a colossal campaign blunder, takes on the mantle of defending eight years of Bush failures rather than saying simply that he is not Bush and that he has a different way of looking at the world and will have policies that differ from those of Bush to varying degrees, some small and some large. He is, after all, a self-described "maverick." Perhaps he should dress himself up in Bret Maverick's outfit, which you can see in this You Tube clip. Better yet, maybe the Democrats should.
The answer McCain gives to the "Better Off" question is as lame as I can think of -- we are better off overall. What in living hell does that mean? Nothing in particular, so McCain elaborates some particulars which you can see in the second column. The third column refutes the claims of the second column. The response that household income is down $1000 per se does not do so, but if one adds increased unemployment, increased inflation, including in particular an increase in gas prices that makes doing everything from going to a job, to the grocery store, to one's church, and to movies and other entertainments, we have a resounding refutation. My wife and I are not more prosperous. We have suffered a decline in stock values and a decrease in the spending power of our retirement income and income from stocks. So, it is easy for me to calculate the effect of the cost of the War in Iraq and various other stupid Bush policies on our degree of prosperousness.
I am delighted that McCain has decided to run on the Bush record. He will, of course, run for the hills once the one-on-one campaign heats up. Unfortunately, I am convinced that in the very unlikely event that Hillary wins, African Americans will either not vote, vote for the Megalomaniac Nader, or vote for McCain. Meanwhile, if Obama wins, I fear White racism will kill off his chances. The White vote for Hillary played a major role in her win in Pennsylvania. Much of that White vote will go to the old White addle-pated guy, McCain.
Did I mention that after his answer to all but two of his assertions, he closed his eyes. In one of these two cases, his reply was cut off too quickly to see it. The Democrats should run it about 20 milliseconds longer. And, though it was hard to tell given the McCain sound bytes, it seemed that he closed his eyes before making his next point. It is as if he had bought into the first monkey's injunction, "See no evil," the evil being his intentional falsehoods. Allegedly one of the signs someone is lying is closing one's eyes.
One of my favorite Eagles songs is Lyin' Eyes. Having suckered a rich old man into marrying her, the bored wife decides she needs a bit of a change.
So she tells him she must go out for the evening
To comfort an old friend who's feelin' down
But he knows where she's goin' as she's leavin'
She is headed for the cheatin' side of town
You can't hide your lyin' eyes
And your smile is a thin disguise
I thought by now you'd realize
There ain't no way to hide your lyin eyes