05 August, 2008

Different Values

Update: Lex has some thoughts on the racial/sexual memes this video addresses.

This video is a tad off-color and absolutely hilarious--it destroys the media/punditry--but what really stands out for me is McCain's reaction to being implicitly called a liar and a racist (at 5:17):

John Stewart calls it "playing the 'get the @&$# off my lawn' card" when, after McCain is pressed about whether he's playing "the race card" in his campaign, McCain simply shakes the reporter's hand in dismissal and says he'll let the American people decide. Too late, the reporter realizes he's said something wrong--he starts to apologize, but McCain ignores it and just leaves him standing there.


But what it really shows is that the reporter didn't see his line of questioning as an insult to McCain's integrity/character. In a campaign in which McCain has shied so far away from anything that could be remotely construed as racist that his supporters have complained he's too deferential, the idea that he is running a racist campaign against Obama is absurd. Yet there is the reporter, questioning his honesty telling McCain that "some people" think he is--despite McCain emphatically saying moments prior that racist rhetoric has no place in his campaign.

Like an officer and a gentleman, McCain maintains the niceties in the face of what are fighting words (restraining himself because his interlocutor is too lacking in honor to see that), and simultaneously brushes the man off as not worthy of his time. He doesn't attack back, he doesn't argue, he just dismisses in all but a direct military order. Even the Daily Show audience recognizes what they're watching.

Yikes. Reminds me of a few people whom I deeply respect but fear angering...

And how much do you want to bet that the reporter will now add this little encounter to his "McCain can be prickly and unfriendly" file? He doesn't have a clue...