The Clark/Webb-related events of the past few days have opened a door and given the public a more complete idea of who McCain is and how he deals with people and unfriendly situations. As his experience was called into question by more senior military officials (something that has not been done publicly), we were given a picture of an aging, whiny man who is so arrogant that he expects and demands respect from everyone and if he doesn't get it, it leads to openly erratic behavior. Is John McCain sooo "delicate" that he can't take criticism even when it is accurate and well said? Does he have to rely on Fox and shallow expressions and claims of patriotism to bite back? Why can't he handle criticism? More importantly, how will he react when entire nations will be openly criticizing him, if he can't even handle it from a few individual people?
By reacting the way he has and certainly continuing it after Obama said, "Enough!" with the whole thing, McCain made the horrendous error of demanding that it was time to "cut Clark loose". Obama will do no such thing. Now, Obama has earned hand and McCain looks like a whiny old man. Having Clark and Webb highlighting these weaknesses in a backwards and illogical world where Obama can't because he didn't "serve", is just what Obama needs. McCain's reaction is a product of over a decade of favorable Media coverage, a lifetime of demanding his ass to be kissed and very little public criticism. Clark was dead-on when he suggested McCain was "untested", but now it also includes national public life.
Wait. I spoke to soon. He was "tested" by Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega on a diplomatic mission in 1987.
"McCain was down at the end of the table and we were talking to the head of the guerrilla group here at this end of the table and I don't know what attracted my attention," Cochran said in an interview with The Sun Herald in Biloxi, Miss. "But I saw some kind of quick movement at the bottom of the table and I looked down there and John had reached over and grabbed this guy by the shirt collar and had snatched him up like he was throwing him up out of the chair to tell him what he thought about him or whatever ...And that was on a diplomatic mission. McCain has to be the alpha male and bully in every situation and this is not what we need. We're just finishing up with a non-physical bully, and now McCain thinks we need more PLUS a little extra.
"I don't know what he was telling him but I thought, 'Good grief, everybody around here has got guns and we were there on a diplomatic mission.' I don't know what had happened to provoke John, but he obviously got mad at the guy ... and he just reached over there and snatched ... him."
The bigger issue is not whether I think McCain is a sissy that can't hack it. I do and he can't. The once-hidden image of a hotheaded bully that rose in politics because of family connections and physical threats is back on the table and now that the majority of the MSM has openly displayed reluctance to let McCain off the hook and rail into Obama, he might be in some trouble.
My Question: We have already heard the word "Swift Boat" hundreds of times in the past few days and the sound of that raises hairs on the backs of Democratic voters because we know how slimy the GOP can be. However, the media has been heavily criticized this season and felt threatened by blogs, forums and youtube and have forced themselves to be slightly more objective. So will their fear of further criticism cause them to label all baseless smears as a "Swift Boat", therefore putting them to rest before they get to the point they did last election?