Brynn Craffey

Anger Management Problems

Filed By Brynn Craffey | October 09, 2008 10:00 AM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Barack Obama, John McCain, presidential campaign, racism

Watching the debate on Tuesday night, the contrast between McCain's snarky, scripted, desperate and confused attacks and Obama's thoughtful, articulate, complex pronouncements could not have been more dramatic. Obama looked presidential. McCain looked empty, struggling, and furious.

His "That one!" and pointed refusal to shake Obama's hand after the debate were just two of the most obvious indications that this is a seriously pissed-off man.

And two thoughts occurred to me.

First, John Sidney McCain III, 72, 4th-term senator, son and grandson of four-star admirals, third in line to graduate from Annapolis, and married to a woman worth 300-plus million dollars, is used to getting what he wants. And right now, he wants the presidency. He wants it so badly, he sold his soul to the Republican-Party-now-beholden-to-religious-bigots. And I don't think it would be a stretch to say, he believes in his heart that the office should be his. At his age, this is his last shot. And- come on now! It's His Turn.

My second thought was McCain now understands that he may not only fail to be awarded the highest office in the land which he believes he so rightly deserves, but he is looking to go down in history as the first white man to lose a presidential campaign to a black man.

Imagine the ignominy to a man like McCain. I'm not saying he's more racist than any man of his generation. But remember, McCain was born a white man into a privileged family and grew to adulthood during a time when the citizens of this country still lived under legal apartheid. And now he is looking to fail not only at his ultimate dream, but to go down in the history books as the first white man to lose the presidency to a black man.

The sort of rage that can generate in a man like McCain was in full view on Tuesday night.

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Brynn, I agree with your point of view. But I actually thought Obama's performance on Tuesday was pretty lack luster compared to other Obama performances.

Brynn Craffey Brynn Craffey | October 9, 2008 4:19 PM

lack luster compared to other Obama performances

I agree!!

But he still shone compared to McCain.

Robert Ganshorn Robert Ganshorn | October 9, 2008 11:15 AM

Serena, you are right, Obama no longer has to be miles better just feet will do. No matter how it is sliced both candidates fear making a fatal mistake. No matter how it is sliced this election will have made history. More money spent than what it costs to elect thirty other heads of state. First woman in the executive branch as VP or first black man as president.

Brynn, it is the other angry people I fear. Spurred on by the ignorance leaving the lips of Palin and Mrs. McCain. The ones who yell whenever Obama's name is mentioned. The ones we do not usually hear because they are saying it under their breath.

"Kill him, terrorist!"

Just because the stray mike has picked it up recently does not mean that it has not been being said right along.

John McCain's temper has been legendary around Capitol Hill for years. Given that, his age, the amount of medication he's on, the pressure of the campaign, and his personal sense of entitlement, I'm waiting for the public meltdown when he loses. As time goes on, McCain becomes less and less appealing as a candidate, it becomes more and more obvious that he's willing to sell out to anyone to get the job. Events have conspired against him, and I cannot wait to hear who gets blasted in his concession speech. I bet it will be a memorable Nixonian event.

I ponder about the chance that Obama's "lackluster" performance might have been intentional --- there is a danger in American politics of appearing "too smart": for example, it is said that Adlai Stevenson lost to Eisenhower (twice) because many perceived him as a "egghead" --- too smart in a way that was unappealing to some, in other words.

And right before this election is the time that a potentially "too smart" candidate needs to "dumb down" --- having won over the intellectual set that he will, he needs to do what it takes to appeal to a less common denominator (hopefully not the lowest common denominator). Fancy oratory might get him into the spotlight, but toward the end it might be useful to talk in monosyllables that everyone understands.

Now, this notion may seem cynical, but ... well, that's life in the political spotlight.