Shiny metal objects are meant to distract you.
Fall for the trap at your own peril.
Joe Klein has taken a beating from the left over the past few years. His momentary support for the Iraq War--which he has since apologized for made him a poster child for being part of the clueless media elite that helped enable this administration's disastrous policies.
Recently however, Klein has been very clear-eyed about what's going on, and the changes in the character of his once friend, John McCain.
In his latest post, Klein explicitly calls out Steve Schmidt for practicing the kind of dangerous Orwellian game that I wrote about a couple of days ago, and Jon Taplin summarized yesterday.
Specifically, Klein asserts:
The tabloid media are treating her precisely as the tabloid media treat everybody. Steve Schmidt has done a brilliant--fabulously dishonest--job of setting up straw men, but it's a smokescreen to hide the fact that McCain rushed into this choice and didn't vet her properly.The McCain campaign has gone on a carpetbombing attack, flooding the airwaves with advertising that spreads blatant falsehoods about Obama's economic policies.
But to what end? To distract from the real issue of this election: the economy, and more specifically the dreadful record of the past eight years of Republican rule.
They practice Orwellian politics of the crudest sort. They are trying to sell a big lie--that the election is about the social issues of the 1960s, or Barack Obama's patriotism or his eloquence, or the "angry left," when it's really about turning toward a more moderate path after the ideological radicalism and malfeasance of the past eight years.
In his post "Swift Boat Economics," Dean Baker notes: (h/t Paul Rosenberg)
Senator McCain is filling the airwaves with commercials telling the public that Obama's tax increases will slow growth and cost the economy jobs. It's pretty scary stuff to anyone who takes it seriously.
Of course, there's no truth to Senator McCain's Swift boat economics.
So what's really going on? While enmeshing the media in the Palin sideshow and non-stories like attacking Oprah over her political biases, the McCain campaign is able to propagandize at will, unchecked by a distracted media whose credentials are being attacked daily.
This is exactly what McCain's campaign manager Rick Davis means when he said that this election is not about issues.
And this is exactly the kind of politics that needs to be defeated in this election, once and for all.