General Question

dalepetrie's avatar

So, why is McCain running ads saying he won the debate which hasn't even been held yet, and which up until an hour ago he wasn't even going to attend?

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

45 Answers

PIXEL's avatar

If he wins I will be very mad.

asmonet's avatar

It’s possible it was released early, by mistake. That’s a bit of a gaff.

I’m gonna be pretty peeved too.

dalepetrie's avatar

And wasn’t he supposed to have suspended his campaign since Wednesday. But yet he did an interview with Katie Couric on Wednesday and a campaign appearance on Thursday, not a single one of his campaign offices was closed, people reported seeing ads on Wednesday, Thursday and now this one today, which is presumptious at BEST, and fucking batshit crazy at worst.

Do we stick a fork in him…is he done? He has blinked now. He has flip flopped. He’ll be there, even though we still don’t have a done deal, even though everyone working on the bill said he wasn’t wanted there, and even though his “contribution” was to stare blankly and listen for 40 minutes without offering a single solution. And it’s his OWN party that he can’t get to fall in line. And he’s got his running mate sounding like a blithering idiot in her softball Katie Couric interview.

So, clearly Democrats are going to say Obama won the debate no matter what, and Republicans are going to say McCain won the debate no matter what, but just how good does he have to do to get independents to think he made sense. Was this move lowering the bar, so that people wouldn’t expect much out of him and he’d win the debate no matter what because everyone will be expecting Obama to hand him his ass?

I suspect that if Obama wins this debate hands down, and Lehrer just hammers McCain on his gaffes, flip flops, and abyssmal lack of understanding of the economy, catches him not answering the questions and in outright lies (and particularly if the McCain temper shows up), Obama is going to win in a Reaganesque landslide.

fireside's avatar

This appears to be an image file that is not necessarily on the live website.

Maybe it was a draft with a positioned ad just like the Chinese conversation about the successful launch before their rocket had blasted off.

How did you access this section?
I assume you work at the Post? Or know someone who does?

dalepetrie's avatar

No, just found it posted on a blog

aidje's avatar

Preemptive advertising: like preemptive war, but not quite as glorious.

El_Cadejo's avatar

You sure its not edited?

fireside's avatar

Check out the actual WP politics page

As to your other points, yep, stick a fork in him.

deaddolly's avatar

What a fucking idiot.

dalepetrie's avatar

I suppose it could have been edited, however, here’s a story corroborating:

sndfreQ's avatar

Did anyone catch the reaction from Dave Letterman when McCain canceled his appearance?

This was happening while McCain claimed to be “rushing off to Washington” when in actuality he was in the next studio over interviewing with Katie Couric?! Needless to say, Dave was pretty pissed because of the perception that McCain lied to him about rushing off when he was in fact dodging a “comedy/variety” show for a hard news interview. Pretty blatant stuff, caught this on Keith Olbrermann last night

dalepetrie's avatar

The Letterman thing was priceless. I hadn’t been watching Dave recently, but I read about it so I had to watch Wednesday night….it was outstanding. I hear Dave went after McCain again last night, saying he felt like an “ugly date”.

I can’t WAIT to see what the polls look like Saturday morning.

wundayatta's avatar

@Dalepetrie, as you know, candidates must prepare for all eventualities, and they have to hit the ground running. Hmmm. Any more cliches I can use? As to the victor of the debate; that’s spin and genuine reaction. So they are preparing the spin now, and they will ad details later. As I said yesterday regarding the Chinese news story about their upcoming space shot, it is SOP to prepare press releases before major events that assume the best possible outcome from your point of view. Obama has these, too. They just didn’t get accidently released yet.

Hmmm. I wonder about that “accidental” release. It could have been an Obama supporter on the WSJ staff that did it.

PIXEL's avatar

I thought it was funny when Obama was asked if he wanted to suspend his campaign too and he said “A good president needs to be able to do more things at once.” Hahah.

dalepetrie's avatar

daloon – you really think there are Obama supporters working for the WSJ? I guess stranger things have happened.

As for preparing the spin now…yeah, I’d be preparing spin, but I wouldn’t just simply have a graphic saying I’ve won. I mean at very least, the fact that this ad was “leaked” while his campaign was supposedly in suspense should say SOMETHING about his integrity. And it seems to me to be a bad idea, because that’s a pretty sweeping, blanket statement. Spin is about accentuating the positive and not paying much attention to the negative. If there are gaffes or screw ups of any kind, that ad is going to look like a HORRIBLE idea. That’s what I mean about how it plays with independents…if McCain doesn’t do well in the debate, and an independent sees that ad, isn’t he/she going to wonder what planet McCain lives on?

fireside's avatar

I loved both the Letterman rants and Katie Couric virtually holding Palin’s hand.
Poor girl has been ridiculed by the press, doncha know?

I wouldn’t read a whole lot into the ads, that was most likely a mistake over at the WSJ. The new ads were probably created in the hopes that they would be somewhat valid after tonight. When they got sent to the media outlet, it probably got put into the ad server with a wrong code and starting appearing.

I highly doubt that anyone in the McCain camp had anything to do with this issue.
Here’s the page where the ad appeared, I’m watching to see if it shows up again, but mot likely, they were alerted after the Washington Post article.

dalepetrie's avatar

I’ve heard it was pulled shortly after it first ran.

But like you said, the new ads were probably created in the hopes that they would be somewhat valid after tonight. But if so, WHEN were they created, and even more importantly, WHEN were they released to the WSJ.

Because we know the ad was put up before McCain said he was un-suspending his campaign, but after he suspended it.

Supposedly, all media were told as of 4pm Wednesday not to run any new ads, and no new ads were going out.

Yet people saw ads on Thursday…the campaign said there were still some old ads in the pipeline and THAT was a mistake, OK, fair enough.

But if McCain gave these ads to the WSJ before he suspended his campaign on Wednesday, why did it not show up until this morning? Why would they suddenly on Friday have run a new ad when they’d been told for the last 38 hours that no new ads were to be run? It seems to me these ads were produced AND delivered WHILE his campaign was suspended (just ask anyone in this country who works at a McCain field office if they showed up to the campaign HQ on Thursday, and you’ll get an overwhelming YES btw).

And yet as early as an hour ago, McCain still said he might not show up for the debate.

So, this indicates to me that he knew all along he wasn’t going to be a no show at the debates, right?

I just don’t see a way to spin this that either doesn’t punch a hole in his “country first” line as to why he suspended his campaign, or which doesn’t make him look incredibly presumptuous, or basically any way he can credibly pass the blame to the WSJ or some Obama supporter on their staff for this one. It’s more than just the ad and what it says, it’s that the ad itself even exists that confounds me.

fireside's avatar

I would say that the ads were definitely just produced and sent in the past 12 hours. It only would have taken 10 minutes to make that image and if it is a Flash file then it might have taken 30.

I’d guess that he knew yesterday that he would have to appear at the debate. Everyone knew he was playing little to no role in the Bailout effort.

Completely agree that the ad is just dumb. Suspension aside, who advertises that they won a debate? It’s the first of three and I doubt that any of them will have a clear winner.

Chalk it up to another embarrassment from a poorly run campaign.

fireside's avatar

Lol, did you actually read his press release about going to the debate and the bailout talks yesterday?

The Democratic interests stood together in opposition to an agreement that would accommodate additional taxpayer protections.

That’s funny, nothing I read anywhere else said that.
Even the president acknowledged that the some of the changes Obama was pushing for should be included. (not in so many words, obviously)

tabbycat's avatar

Another gaffe from the McCain campaign. Between that and Sarah Palin’s embarrassing showing with Katie Couric, it’s hard to have much faith in the Republicans this year.

I’ve had my doubts in the past, but an Obama victory looks more and more likely. He certainly gets my vote.

dalepetrie's avatar

Yes, I was just reading the Washington Post say that McCain’s major objection was the taxpayer protection piece. This guy is positively Orwellian!

tWrex's avatar

Wow… What he did to Letterman was wack. Totally bogus.

dalepetrie's avatar

tWrex – fortunately Letterman knew EXACTLY how to handle it. I mean, here’s one of the few McCain friendly (non Faux News) venues he has to speak to the American people, a place where he is revered and respected, he’s appeared 13 times on the show and even announced his candidacy on Dave’s show, and he LIES to Dave about having to rush back to Warshington, my friends. I think the best outcome of that one is that Letterman’s show is watched pretty equally by liberals and conservatives because Dave usually doesn’t take political sides, he’s not known to be a liberal mouthpiece, so there were a LOT of conservatives watching that show, probably plenty right in the audience excited to see McCain, and now THEY got to see first hand what an incredible and appalling lack of integrity this guy has.

augustlan's avatar

That Letterman thing was beautiful.

dalepetrie's avatar

Here’s something that concerns me gravely.

When McCain picked Sarah Palin, my jaw dropped almost clean off. I thought, “he’s just lost the election.” Logic made me think this. It is a wholly logical thought to me, and I simply can’t poke holes in this reasoning that says to me, if you’ve spent 6 months saying, “my opponent is not qualified”, then you put someone on your ticket who is far less qualified, you have lost the argument you’ve been trying to make for 6 months.

What I didn’t anticipate was the positively mindboggling way people (in this case Republicans, but I know Dems do this too) can dillute themselves into believing whatever set of facts supports their pre-determined conclusions. If you already had your mind up that you were voting for McCain (or against Obama), all you needed was “plausible deniability”, and that came via the argument that she has been a mayor and a governor and therefore has executive experience, and that’s what we “really” meant when we said “experience” anyway. Never mind that this actually then makes their candidate at the top of the ticket seem less “experienced” by their own definition…that in fact innoculates them over worries that McCain might not live to serve out his full term. Indeed, they took her weakness, turned it into a strenght, and put her in the driver’s seat…because they knew she was the far right wing batshit crazy posterchild for the far right Republican base that elected Bush and who control the purse strings. And NONE of these people is at all concerned about any issue, as long as they get a ticket that’s willing to force its morality down America’s throats. So there could be a picture of Palin sucking off a billy goat, and they’d probably just say it was a “hazing stunt” she went through when running for Miss Alaska or some bullshit like that.

So, this is what has me concerned…McCain has made moves which if ANY Democrat had made would have ended his career right then and there…and he’s done it over and over and over again, because he can spin that message. I came to see the Palin pick as a pre-meditated move to shore up the religious right wing of the party, which is CRUCIAL for any Republican to win.

So, what scares the shit out of me, is that McCain made a pre-meditated decision to “suspend” his campaign, to place the fate of the debate in doubt for 2 days, right up until the morning of, and on the surface it seems like it’s an impulsive move, a little political theater meant to make him come off as the great white knight who swooped in and saved the economy (and surely that’s the message he’s selling to the base, who will buy any lie he gives them). My original, gut instinct on this was that this was a PR stunt so that effectively he could say “country first” and they could attack Obama for putting politics first (when like I said, he’s a master of Orwellian doublespeak…accuse your opponent of doing exactly what YOU’RE doing).

So, I draw the parallels here to the Palin pick…I thought it was a risky move and a really bad idea, because on the surface, Palin seemed like a political move meant to shore up Hillary supporters who weren’t enthused with Obama. I knew after 5 minutes on her Wikipedia page that no one who was sincere about wanting Hillary to be the President would be fooled by this, and the polls proved me right. But I didn’t see the other facets. Now same can be said here, I thought the debate debacle was a ruse, meant to paint Obama like he didn’t care as much about the country…I thought, this gambit will fail, he’ll have to eat crow and show up anyway because Obama’s not stupid enough to fall for it, the debate commission isn’t just going to cancel the debate, and McCain is going to look impulsive, stupid and self serving to anyone paying attention. And so far I’m right. But, just like with the Palin pick, where there was an upside which outweighed all of these downsides, I fear gravely that we may see something of this nature transpire tonight.

What if McCain actually WANTED to build the impression that he was running scared. He wants people to think that because this debate will now have an economic policy aspect to it, that he was not prepared to go there and was doing everything he could to try to look like he was frantically worrying about what to do about the economy, but was simply too clueless. Maybe he WANTS the public to think he did some grandstanding and showed up at these meetings and didn’t say a word or contribute one ioata, and maybe he WANTS people also to think that he was trying to not only push this back a week, but push back Palin’s debate as well. Hell, maybe he’s even instructed Palin to look amateurish in her interviews heretofore. And NOW, what are they going to do? They’re going to show up at these debates with a million gotchas for Obama and Biden, they’re going to have done their homework about what the public wants to hear and they are going to pander, pander, pander like experts. And suddenly the expectations WERE at zero, but McCain pulls this off tonight, and Palin comes out swinging next Thursday and actually seems to have a grasp of the issues and gets Biden on a couple of manufactured outrage type gaffes, and BAM, suddenly they’re up 10 points by the end of next week.

Anyone else scared shitless?

richardhenry's avatar

They released Steve Job’s obituary early. As in, he’s still quite far from dead. Anything could happen.

tabbycat's avatar

I will be scared until after Election Day. It’s still far too close an election.

sundayBastard's avatar

I hope he wins! So then we can have a WW3! It will be so fun! WOW! I can hardly wait!

robmandu's avatar

@dalepetrie, this, this is what you get riled up about? A single, likely hoax ad appears briefly on the intertubes… and we get this rant from you?

But how Obama conducts himself with other heads of state isn’t worth your time?


I mean, I get it. You want Obama for president. But have you really made anything new known here? Kinda preaching to the choir in this forum, don’tcha think?

dalepetrie's avatar

Yes, robmandu, this DOES concern me because as I’ve explained ad nauseum, #1 – I think Obama’s actions in talking to other heads of state were appropriate, we disagree on that point, and I don’t feel it’s worth more than the 50,000 words I’ve already devoted to it, because I think your whole argument is based on a faulty premise (talking = negotiation). If the discussion hadn’t been wroth my time I wouldn’t have gone back and forth with you about it for the better part of the day, I said FURTHER discussion was not worth my time, yet you still persist in trying to get me to beat my head on that brick wall.

Well, personally, and yes, this IS frightenting to me, this is getting me riled up. It’s not about the ad, it’s about what is behind all of this. There is a huge cognitive dissonance going on here between what McCain is doing and what makes sense, and I think recent history provides us with a precedent here that suggests to me that he’s playing us, and that it might well work. There is NO WAY a person who’s had the week McCain has had should be able to recover, but I’m starting to see how he actually manufactured all this bad news to set the bar so incredibly low that he’s going to be able to shock the world with something that should to any thinking, rational person be underwhelming.

You may think this is about this one election, well buddy, this is bigger than that to me. I’ve never seen an honest person run for President (and have an actual shot at it) in my lifetime. Obama isn’t perfect, but I believe him, I think he’s got honor and integrity, and McCain is proving himself to be anything BUT the man of honor I think most people, even most Democrats thought him to be. I honestly think that what has happened under the Bush Administration rises to the level of high treason committed on more than one occassion. I believe that Bush and Cheney have had a willful disregard for the Constitution, which they have been duly sworn to uphold and protect. I believe that if McCain gets into office, he will continue that same “I’ll do whatever I want and never be held accountable for it” approach to governance.

I believe Obama will restore the power of our Democracy and the sanctity of our Constitution. This election is bigger than a contest between the lesser of two evils, and it’s the first Presidential election where I’ve ever believed that with every fiber of my being so deeply that I wouuld stake my very life on it if it came to that. I don’t believe there will be an America left for trickle down, religious right wing Republicans to destroy if we get a third Bush term, and that to me is what is at stake.

So yes, I get VERY nervous when I know damn well that the debates aren’t about who makes the most sense from a logical standpoint…they are all about who has the best one liners, the best quips, who can best get off a good one on his opponent…THAT’S what people remember when they vote. Your partisans who really care about the issues from one side or another, they vote with their brains based on their deeply held values, but it’s these undecided independents in the middle, they are low information voters, and they vote for whomever they get the best gut feeling about. Logic would dictate that they’re not going to have a good gut feeling about a ticket which has shown the complete lack of judgement and total devotion to a win at all costs slash and burn politics that has been happening not just over this past week, but over the course of McCain’s entire campaign.

But we see, all it takes is a folksy, attractive, mooseburger eatin’ hockey mom (who won’t even do a damn press conference and tell us where she stands on ANY issue) to completely energize the Republican base and excite the imaginations of these low information voters who are ultimately going to decide the race. It took a 5 second announcement that she would be McCain’s running mates to turn the polls around for McCain. It took 2 weeks of McCain gaffes and Obama confronting problems with sound judgement and reason to turn them back the other way.

McCain KNOWS he can’t win if it comes down to the issues, and he has avoided them like the plague…and that works, IF you can find just that right Hail Mary pass that will change the game and capture that part of the independent voting block who is just looking to “feel good” about their vote, not to actually think about the issues and how they might impact our lives. Anger can also sway these people…if they’re angry enough at the Republicans or at McCain, Obama will benefit (and we’ve seen this). My problem is, it’s valid to be angry at someone who has spent 26 years deregulating left and right when that decision comes back to destroy our economy. It is not however valid in my opinion to decide the fate of your nation based on the fact that gosh dang it, this woman is just the salt of the earth. So, I’m positively LIVID.

Because I can SEE it coming. And I feel like chicken little out here, because the attitude seems to be that McCain has really screwed up, and he’s going to have to hit it out of the park to redeem himself. But I realized that what he has done is he’s set the bar so unbelievably low for himself that there’s no way he can fail. I am REALLY worried, and yes, I get riled up, because a McCain Presidency is literally my very worst nightmare, I’d sooner eat a bag of broken glass than see that happen. And I just think he is a master manipulator, and he knows how to move public opinion in very large chunks very quickly, and it pains me to see our country being manipulated yet again into making the wrong choice.

We were manipulated into the Patriot Act, we were manipulated into Iraq, we were manipulated into thinking that Florida 2000 was about hanging chads and not about Choice Point technologies. And you know what the one common thread about every single fucking thing I bitch about regarding the Bush administration is? I’ll tell you. In every single case where I feel America has been bent over a barrel and raped up the ass by the Bush Administration, even when public opinion was 10 to 1 against me, I’ve seen through the bullshit. I did not buy into ANY of these things that so many Americans now say, “well at the time…it seemed…” My bullshit detector is set pretty high, and it has to be because that’s all Republicans in power have been feeding us.

And it tears my fucking soul to see this happening again. So I’m positively sick to death that come tomorrow, we’re going to have Americans talking about how impressive McCain was, JUST because they didn’t even expect him to be coherent. You might not think I have the right to be pissed off about it, but don’t try to confuse the issue by dragging a completely unrelated discussion into it…that is yet another distraction, and I’m so fucking sick to death of these distractions and lies from McCain and folks who are carrying his water that it makes me want to puke.

sundayBastard's avatar

@dalepetrie You will soon learn that I am not just some crazy bastard and i what I told you was all true.

tWrex's avatar

@dalepetrie I’m gonna write a nice little python script to truncate your posts into a readers digest version. My eyes are starting to bleed from your posts! Killin’ me…

dalepetrie's avatar

I don’t think you’re crazy (just crazy enough in fact). And yet another reason Obama needs to win, that way I’ll know if all hope is lost for our Democracy or not.

Let’s see if any McCain waterbearers are going to come out of the woodwork now and refer to me (like Bush would) as a member of the “angry left”. That’s another great one…here…I’m going to poke you in the eye with a stick for 8 years, and then when you get pissed off, I’m going to shout from the rooftops…“see, he’s angry and unstable, you can’t trust him.”

Another one of my favorite Republican distractions/misleads that I hear all the fucking time from both our governor in Minnesota (Pawlenty) and one of our two Congresspeople (Norm Coleman) is “now is not the time for finger pointing™”. They say it every single goddamn time there is bad news from a Republican. Oh, so you spent 6 years fighting against any sort of taxes to put into our roads and bridges, Timmy, and a bridge falls down in rush hour killing 13 people…well, “now is not the time for finger pointing.” Or Senator Coleman, you have been part of the deregulation crowd which let these Wall Street crooks destroy our economy, but “now is not the time for finger pointing.”

But when your opponent Al Franken has an accountant who fucks up and pays all of your taxes, but pays some of them to the wrong state, it’s OK to put out a political ad with a scary voiceover guy saying “Al Franken didn’t pay his taxes” (we’ll just leave off the to the correct states part and ignore the fact that as soon as he found out about it, he paid all his back taxes and THEN applied for refunds where he OVERPAID). I guess the time for finger pointing is when a Democrat does something wrong, like gets a blowjob from an intern…didn’t see any Republicans afraid to point their fingers then…but God forbid a Republican does something that maybe kills a bunch of people or bankrupts millions, and well, “now is not the time for finger pointing™”.

It pisses me off, goddamnit.

tWrex's avatar

Well thank God I’m a Conservative and not a Republican, otherwise dale would hate me too… Still voting for Ron Paul and Cindy Lauper

robmandu's avatar

@dalepetrie, if there’s one lesson to learn from is that neither political party holds the moral high ground when it comes to misrepresenting the other side’s viewpoint, actions, or motives.

dalepetrie's avatar

I don’t hate Republicans. I’ve met many who simply believe things different than I believe. I hate lying politician scum. Which generally means politicians. And the Dems are not guilt free, believe me. Like I said, it’s the first time in my lifetime where I haven’t felt like I’m voting for the lesser of two evils…I feel I’m voting against one great evil and for one great good. Even Obama hasn’t been 100% honest, and I can’t say I’ve always been 100% honest about every single thing in my life…people are people, not saints. But there are degrees, and man the degree of dishonesty McCain has put forth, even will tell you it’s been pretty damn one sided.

fireside's avatar

I definitely hear what you are saying dale.

I would be willing to bet a lot of money that McCain “suspended” his campaign and then spent most of the past few days prepping for the debate.

Our whole political system is flawed to the point where exploiting the laziness of the average American is status quo. Remember Karl Rove? For years he carried an index card around showing where independent voters stood on most issues. That way if something came up, he could just consult the card and would coach his candidate on how best to answer the question.

Sadly, our forefathers never envisioned career politicians, their thought was that ordinary Americans who had already had success in the private sectors would step in to serve their country. We’re at the point now where we serve the politicians and they serve the special interests.

The John McCain of 8 years ago was a man who had more integrity and who I could have seen myself voting for, but the past six years that he has seemingly betrayed his own principles just so that he could be “the nominee of his party” have shown me a very different man.

prince's avatar


While it’s true that Obama has made exaggerations in his campaign (as a quick look at factcheck will show), I can’t see any way to equate that to the level of outright lies and extreme political manipulation (saying the Palin never took earmarks on The View and the “Obama teaches sex ed to kindergartners” ad to give one example of each).

I used to be a McCain supporter in 2000, and the transformation (that @fireside mentions) has made me totally disgusted.

We’ve gone way past debating the issues, way past even connecting emotionally to voters. We’re way past debating about smaller government and way past “conservatism”. Ever since the RNC, the McCain campaign junked the Straight Talk Express and boarded some strange reality of manipulation that’s devoid of integrity.

Bri_L's avatar

@robmandu I tried to use your link but it wont work. Could you tell me what you mean please?

tabbycat's avatar

Yes, I find McCain’s reversal sad and disgusting. He’s someone I once respected, and I am truly disappointed in him.

PIXEL's avatar

I’m watching the debate right now! (on iPhone)

dalepetrie's avatar

prince – my point exactly…lurve for you!

PIXEL's avatar

Does McCain remind anyone of a turtle. Just sayin

dalepetrie's avatar

I’ve got the DVR taping it right now, I’m going to watch it after my 7 year old is in bed. But from what I’m reading on here and elsewhere, I’m wondering if I may have been worried for nothing. What a relief.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther