McCain is Surrounded by Idiots
by John C. Dvorak

Last night I witnessed one of the biggest screw-ups I have ever seen in a Presidential campaign in my entire life. And this may cost me a lot of bets and it may cost john McCain the election. The culprits, though, are the apparent dummies handling the McCain schedule and strategy. These people should all be fired tomorrow. They are out-and-out idiots and I actually wonder who they really work for.

McCain was scheduled to do the David Letterman show. He’s a perfect match for Letterman and it would have been funny and endearing. But golly there is this economic situation that needed attention so McCain had to rush back to Washington. He even called Dave on the phone to cancel at the last minute.

Letterman was dubious and booked Obama-nut Keith Olberman as the substitute guest. It seems as if McCain was not heading to Washington after all but over to another studio where Katie Couric would bring him on the news hour. In fact they showed McCain getting powder in the set before the interview. Couric and Letterman are in-studio around the same time.

They put the feed of this right on Letterman’s show. He was steamed.

I have watched Letterman since the days when he was trying to do a daytime TV show and witnessed his show catching on fire. I saw him in the late late show when they would do the whole show as a cartoon or over-dub a Mexican’s voice. I know and love this show. One thing is consistent over the years. Letterman is extremely vindictive. He will go on bitching for weeks when someone does not show up or cancels at the last minute. They are never invited back. Anyone on the staff associated with the fiasco is in the doghouse for months.

So McCain does the news with Couric and lies to Letterman about having to go to the airport. Wonderful. Does McCain have anyone in his organization that knows anything about this sort of thing? Do they like the idea of relentless pounding with one-liners and harsh jokes day after day after day until November. They just invited such a barrage and they are going to have to live with the possibility that one of these nightly jokes will stick in the American public’s psyche and kill the election for McCain.

Why? Why did they allow this possibility to happen? I’ll tell you why. Because there are incompetents running the campaign. McCain has been plagued by this since the inception of the campaign.

Yeah, I know that I have a lot of wagers and my personal reputation riding on this election with my predictions from over two years ago saying that no Democrat would win this Presidential election in 2008. Yeah, I know and that’s why this sort of outlandish screw-up happening irks me to no end.

So what was the point of screwing over Letterman?
It was obviously something cavalier within the management of this campaign. Some shit-head who did not know what he/she was doing but managed to lord it over the rest of the group.

The over management crises is also apparent with Sarah Palin and her obvious repeating of talking points without explanation. She did it with both Charlie Gibson and Katie Couric. With Gibson he reworded the exact same question about Israel bombing Iran where she repeated the “I don’t think we should second-guess Israel.” She repeated her response word for word each time Gibson rephrased. She should have called out Gibson and said, “Charlie you are simply asking me the same question over and over and I’ve told you once already what I think. Why do you insist that I repeat myself?” But no, she acted like a robot instead, apparently afraid of someone behind the curtain. Afraid of some “expert” who knows better.

She was also stiff and unnatural with Couric. Palin is an obvious victim of over-coaching by someone in the campaign responsible for presentation, talking points and all the on-message baloney that takes the humanity out of the candidates.

Years ago, I remember seeing Democrat Walter Mondale on the Johnny Carson show after his defeat in the 1984 elections. The guy was incredibly funny, sharp and easily kept pace with Carson in a lively and amusing conversation. I wondered where was THIS guy during the election. He could have won. Instead the public got served an Al Gore-like stiff, obviously over-coached to not make mistakes. In football they call it “playing not to lose.” It usually results in a loss and it did for Mondale.

My advice to McCain and Palin: Get rid of this person who is screwing you over if you want to win this thing. They should be easy to find if you actually look.

Related news story below.

Z on TV: Couric, Letterman too much for McCain and Palin – Sun critic David Zurawik writes about the business, culture and craziness of television –

Adding insult to injury, Letterman brought on MSNBC host and left-wing attack dog Keith Olbermann as the substitute guest for McCain.

During his chat with Olbermann, Letterman used the in-house CBS cameras and monitors to show McCain being readied for his interview with Couric on the set of the CBS Evening News.

“He doesn’t seem to be racing to the airport, does he?” Letterman said referring to McCain’s call earlier in the day when he told Letterman he was canceling because “the economy is cratering” and he has to rush back to Washington to work on a Wall Street bailout plan.

“Hey John, I got a question You need a ride to the airport?” Letterman yelled at the TV monitor as the in-house camera showed McCain talking to Couric.

The audience howled in delight at the merciless edge of Letterman’s anti-McCain barbs. The comedian also repeatedly asked why McCain didn’t send Palin in his place — suggesting the GOP handlers were afraid that she couldn’t handle it.

  1. MildApplause says:

    For some reason, 20 years ago when Letterman would complain about Tom Cruise or someone stiffing the show, it was funny. It was really funny!! Now when it does it, for some reason, it just comes across as whining, and kind of angry and it’s a little uncomfortable and weird.

    But, you’re right, JCD, it was a stupid move to bail on Dave and it shows maybe the most egregious sin of McCain’s handlers: They’re out of touch. It certainly isn’t going to help the McCain campaign.

  2. Glenn E. says:

    McCain bailed out on David Letterman, in order to become a P.O.W. all over again. Prisoner Of Washington (DC), until they’ve fix the financial crisis. And the way thing are going back at the Hill, McCain just have to remain there thru the whole election. So I guess that would mean old George would get another year. But perhaps the VPs will be allowed to run separately. So Cheney could be replaced with either Biden or Palin. I’m sure Dick’s bags are already packed.

  3. Glenn E. says:

    Palin probably has been incognito for a spell, because it has taken this long for her to learn all of her responses the scripted questions she’d be asked. Her “I don’t think we should second-guess Israel.” is probably all she can handle about the middle east situation. The “rephrasing” obviously uncovered that she’s got no thoughts of her own about anything over there. Or isn’t allowed to say squat about it, by McCain’s campaign handlers. So what’s the point interviewing anyone or having debates? The media should just interview the campaign handlers. And the candidates’ major financial supporters. Asking them “When your man (or woman) is in office, what strings would you pull for this or that issue?”

  4. JCD – Too bad for yoo-hoo. Those of us on the east coast got to see Letterman pound the stuffing out of McBush for 35 minutes.

    Haw. That guy is so last summer.

  5. #65 – Mustard

    Woops. I forgot to add “and you have to wait two hours to see it”.

    McBush is toast, and Palin’s swirling the drain.

  6. BigCarbonFoot says:

    Don’t forget that Obama can’t speak without a teleprompter. He’s such a weak, inept candidate that a good Repub candidate would be leading by triple digits right now.

    Instead we have this circus.

    I believe there’s a secret cabal of Bildenbergs, Illuminati, space aliens and Karl Rove clones (with everything he’s credited with, there has to be more than one of him)that are really running things. The entire election, financial crisis, war, etc. are all just a show to keep us masses distracted.

  7. the answer says:

    Just goes to show you McCain’s character. The more people against him the better.

  8. SailRacer says:

    John: You ever think that maybe, just maybe, McCain is having all of these problems because he’s just not a good presidential candidate? When you hire idiots to help you manage your campaign, who would you hire to help you manage the country? Things like this are just signs to me that he doesn’t have the tools to be an effective leader at that level. I’m glad people outside of the news junkie circles are getting to see this.

  9. Winston says:

    McCain is the weakest Rep candidate fielded since Bob Dole. The guy is a senile joke. And I don’t care that he destroyed five Navy jets (two weren’t his fault), attempted suicide while in NV captivity (PTSD President anyone?) or ditched a crippled wife for an ultra-wealthy trophy wife. The guy has made innumerable statements that prove conclusively that he is even dumber than Bush, even less informed on a whole range of international and national issues.

  10. #67 – Tetrahedron

    >>Don’t forget that Obama can’t speak without a

    Of course he can. What, he makes two minor slips of the tongue while speaking extemporaneously in all the hours he’s spent before the cameras (which he recognized and corrected immediately), and you try to compare him to a dunderhead who’s got the speaking skills of Dumbya?

    They should have had McBush attend some Toastmasters meetings before he tried running for national office.

    Maybe he wouldn’t sound like a retarded pile of wet cardboard.

  11. Howard says:

    First the Democrats blindly follow Obama … now, they are willing to blindly follow Reid, Bush and Paulson … in a decision which could dramatically affect every American for decades. Well, thank God, Senator John McCain, Senator Shelby, and hundreds of economists don’t just want to take a few people’s word for it. Already, Reid has tried to tack additional pork, like Acorn, to this bailout. I didn’t think I could dislike inept Harry Reid, with his 15% approval rating, any more than I already did, but this isn’t about Reid being left alone to decide America’s future. It will be interesting to look back at this in retrospect, to see if we really did have to RUSH this 750 Billion dollar decision … and, who really benefitted from pushing it through so quickly.

  12. QB says:

    I agree with SailRacer. Politics aside, the guy’s temperament just isn’t suited to the job.

  13. Keating says:

    I heard McCain was reuniting the Keating-5 to attack this credit problem head on. McCain has a lot of experience with this from the 80s.

  14. J says:

    # 56 John C Dvorak

    I guess I should be aries but I’m not. lol

  15. Jenny C. says:

    Letterman is a douchebag. McCain should have gone to another news organization rather than CBS. But let’s look at it another way. Maybe he is covering for Palin. Her interview with Couric was less than stellar. He is probably trying to spin that comment of hers of Great depression less subtly.

  16. brendal says:


    BTW, Letterman is 4/12…Conan is 4/18 and Rosie O’Donnell is 3/21…see a pattern here?? lol

  17. Marie in Boulder says:

    Jim in Seattle – you said: “So what he stiffed Letterman? He’s a comedian! So WHAT? ”

    That wasn’t the biggest issue. The biggest issue is that he stiffed him, then LIED about it – blatantly and stupidly – he HAD to know he’d get caught in that lie. Why not say “Dave, I need to do a legitimate news interview because of the economic crisis.” Letterman would STILL have been pissed off but he at least would not have been able to ridicule him by CATCHING HIM IN A BALD FACED LIE.” Big mistake for McCain.

  18. Geoffrey says:

    We can simply take the imperial behavior by McCain toward Letterman what the USA would get if this man were to be elected president.

    Better to find out sooner than later, eh?

  19. Daniel says:

    First rate managers hire first rate employees.

    Second rate managers hire third rate employees.


Bad Behavior has blocked 8861 access attempts in the last 7 days.