Older Than Methuselah

Ben Smith:

McCain tells USA Today:

“I believe that people are interested very much in substance,” McCain said, contrasting himself with Barack Obama’s charismatic style. “If it was simply style, William Jennings Bryan would have been president.”

The great orator was the losing Democratic nominee in 1896, 1900 and 1908.

This must be part of McCain’s outreach to younger voters, as he mentions candidates from his teenage years.






99 replies
  1. 1
    Tom Hilton says:

    I’ll bet he’s just itching for some debate moderator to ask him about Free Silver.

  2. 2
    cleek says:

    an excerpt from McCain’s biography:

    The year is nineteen-aught-six! The President is the divine Miss Sara Bernhardt! And all over America, people were doing a dance called the “Funky Grandpa”! [singing] “Oh, I’m the-” [falls asleep standing up]

    Now my story begins in nineteen-dickety-two. We had to say “dickety” cause the Kaiser had stolen our word “twenty”. I chased that rascal to get it back, but gave up after dickety-six miles.

    And the last time the meteors came, we thought the sky was on fire. Naturally, we blamed the Irish. We hanged more ‘n a few.

  3. 3
    Ron M says:

    Did he follow it up by saying this?

    “I needed a new heel for my shoe so I decided to go to Morganville, which is what they called Shelbyville in those days. So I tied an onion to my belt, which was the style at the time. Now to take the ferry cost a nickel, and in those days, nickels had pictures of bumblebees on them.”

  4. 4
    mantis says:

    “We can’t bust heads like we used to, but we have our ways. One trick is to tell them stories that don’t go anywhere. Like the time I took the fairy to Shelbyville. I needed a new heel for my shoe so I decided to go to Morganville, which is what they called Shelbyville in those days. So I tied an onion to my belt, which was the style at the time. Now to take the ferry cost a nickel, and in those days, nickels had pictures of bumblebees on them. Give me five bees for a quarter you’d say. Now where were we, oh ya. The important thing was that I had an onion on my belt, which was the style at the time. They didn’t have white onions because if the war. The only thing you could get was those big yellow ones.”

  5. 5
    mantis says:

    Ok, I guess I’m not the only one struck by the similarities between McSame and Grandpa Simpson.

    More

  6. 6
    cleek says:

    yep.

    and then:

    Dear Mr. President, There are too many states nowadays. Please eliminate three. P.S. I am not a crackpot. I used to be with it, then they changed what it was. Now what was it isn’t it, and what is it is weird and scary to me. It’ll happen to you too.

  7. 7
    TCG says:

    Maybe McCain is trying to Set Obama up for the:

    “I knew William Jennings Bryan, William Jennings Bryan was a friend of mine and Senator you are no William Jennings Bryan.”

    But probably not, but rather a Freudian slip, you know, going with what you know.

  8. 8
    Adam says:

    To his credit, McCain knows who William Jennings Bryant is, unlike certain current Presidents who shall remain nameless.

  9. 9
    jrg says:

    Substance? Like Jello, prune juice, or Denture cream? Or like health care, national security, freedom of religion, sound policy decisions, environmental protection, and a pragmatic government for the people?

    McSame better hope that substance means Fixadent or Astroglide, because most people don’t trust the GOP with respect to anything else.

    We’re living in an era of Blogs and Youtube, and McCain has not caught up with TV yet. I’d almost feel sorry for the delusional old man, but then I remember all the bullshit his party brought to our country over the last 7 years.

  10. 10
    cleek says:

    i predict this will be the start of his acceptance speech at the RNC hoedown:

    My Fellow Americans, I am disgusted with the way old people are depicted on television. We are not all vibrant, fun loving sex maniacs. Many of us are bitter, resentful individuals who remember the good old days when entertainment was bland and inoffensive. The following is a list of words I never want to hear on television again. Number one: bra. Number two: horny. Number three: family jewels.

    … 40 minutes of WWI stories

    You see, back in those days, rich men would ride around in Zeppelins, dropping coins on people, and one day I seen J. D. Rockefeller flying by. So I run of the house with a big washtub and, where are you going?

    and then everybody has left but the crickets and that Lieberman whose making doe-eyes at him like Smithers : “Greate speech, Mr McCain. want to go celebrate in my room? it has a hot tub.

  11. 11
    cleek says:

    [allow me to correct my typos]

    and then everybody has left but the crickets and that sycophant, Lieberman, whose making doe-eyes at him like Waylon Smithers after a bottle of white zinfandel: “Great speech, Mr McCain. Want to go celebrate in my room? It has a hot tub. *winkwink*”

  12. 12
    cleek says:

    whose = who’s, of course.

    damn my ignorant fingers

  13. 13
    Tsulagi says:

    This must be part of McCain’s outreach to younger voters, as he mentions candidates from his teenage years.

    That’s funny. Yeah, once again, The Speech he gave was beyond pitiful. Each time during it I heard his pathetically delivered “That’s not change you can believe in” followed by the forced, feeble laugh, I thought this guy isn’t going to appeal to anyone who doesn’t already need to be in a nursing home and is dribbling jello down their chin.

  14. 14
    Karmakin says:

    This campaign season is going to be SO MUCH FUN.

    Really.

  15. 15
    Should Know Better says:

    Yeah, on the one hand points for knowing some history.

    But at the same time, way to remind everyone you’re really old, not a great speaker and actually not so hot on the substance front either.

  16. 16
    Dave says:

    The real question is whether McCain will be touring the country by steam locomotive or that newfangled “horseless carriage”.

  17. 17
  18. 18
    Blue Raven says:

    Substance, Mr. McCain, should not put us all in mind of the fact you look like the prednisone is about to catch up with you. I grant it would enable you to outweigh Mr. Obama, but think long and hard about whether you want that rictus grin to be surrounded by cheeks that look like you’re hiding nuts for more than one winter.

  19. 19
    Grover Cleveland says:

    Cleek – Someone needs to post the video of Grandpa Simpson telling Monty Burns about his tactics back when he was a union strikebreaker (episode where Homer becomes the plant union boss).

    “We can’t bust heads like we used to, but we have our ways. One trick is to tell them stories that don’t go anywhere. Like the time I took the ferry to Shelbyville. I needed a new heel for my shoe so I decided to go to Morganville, which is what they called Shelbyville in those days. So I tied an onion to my belt, which was the style at the time. Now to take the ferry cost a nickel, and in those days, nickels had pictures of bumblebees on them. Give me five bees for a quarter you’d say. Now where were we, oh ya. The important thing was that I had an onion on my belt, which was the style at the time. They didn’t have white onions because if the war. The only thing you could get was those big yellow ones.”

  20. 20
    Rick Taylor says:

    “I believe that people are interested very much in substance,” McCain said, contrasting himself with Barack Obama’s charismatic style. “If it was simply style, William Jennings Bryan would have been president.”

    I don’t care about the Bryan comment. But this is a lame attempt at a comeback after giving a speech that sucked so badly opposite Obama’s that even Fox couldn’t pretend they didn’t see the difference. His speech didn’t have much substance in it either; it was most arguing through assertion.

  21. 21
    douglasfactors says:

    AAGH!!! Iron bird!!!

  22. 22
    grandpajohn says:

    Hmmm in 2 days in Florida he has managed to piss on 2 pieces of legislation that most
    Floridians favor , yesterday the bill about the hurricane fund,now today the funding to help preserve the everglades so maybe we shouldn’t write Fl off yet.

  23. 23
    plus C says:

    Next week he’ll apologize for voting against the 19th amendment.

  24. 24
    Dug Jay says:

    atrios: Dow Jones down 400 points!

    WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE !

    And Michael’s 401k takes it in the shorts yet again.

  25. 25
    Grand Moff Texan says:

    I believe that people are interested very much in substance

    Come from the GOD!!! GUNS!!! GAYS!!! front for the parasite class, that’s just fucking rich.
    .

  26. 26
    Grand Moff Texan says:

    Hasten to add:

    My wife, who is by NO means a political junkie, finally got a look at John McCain on TV the other night.

    Her reaction:

    “Dude! You’re farting dust!”

    Heh.
    .

  27. 27
    jake says:

    McThuselah for President.

  28. 28
    Faux News says:

    Boy howdy let me tell you gloating Dems one thing. You just WAIT until the debates when McSame looks into Obama’s beady eyes and says “Tippee Canoe and Tyler too”!

    The roar of approval from the crowd and Obama’s “deer in the headlights” look will be priceless!

  29. 29
    GSD says:

    I can’t wait for the MTV McCain underwear question:

    “Bloomers or union suits”.

    -GSD

  30. 30
    Grover Cleveland says:

    I know someone said this a couple of days ago, but Romney has to just be kicking himself right now. He can at least come across as polished.

    He was dumb to run so far to the right early in the primaries, but I guess that was the conventional wisdom among the Republicans. They all tried it. I wonder how much the Mormon thing really hurt him. I guess for a lot of typical GOP voters, it was a problem.

  31. 31
    Tlazolteotl says:

    I think William Jennings Bryan must have been a candidate when McCain’s parents were teenagers.

  32. 32
    cleek says:

    McCain was a founding member of the Van Buren Boys – back when Van Buren himself was the leader.

  33. 33
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    McCain is just out there to lull us into a false sense of security until the Republicans nominate their real candidate at the convention.

  34. 34
    mantis says:

    I think William Jennings Bryan must have been a candidate when McCain’s parents were teenagers.

    Apparently humor is lost on the Aztec goddess of filth. Holy crap, she kind looks like ol Abe Simpson.

  35. 35
    dorkboy says:

    In other news today, oil reached a record high topping $138 a barrel. When asked for comment, Sen. McCain said he’d organize summit with J.D. Rockefeller, Henry Ford and other prominent figures in the oil and autocraft industry.

  36. 36
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    McCain was a founding member of the Van Buren Boys – back when Van Buren himself was the leader.

    You’ll notice that McCain never says “OK.”

  37. 37
    Jake says:

    I was listening to David Gergen the other night on CNN, and he was saying that Obama needs to begin giving some detailed policy speeches, like McCain has been doing.

    I was like, what planet are you on?!?!? There haven’t been ANY details in McCain’s speeches. He didn’t give ANY details in the GOP debates. Jesus fucking Christ.

  38. 38
    Jay B. says:

    Bryan, of course, had actual admirable qualities too — for instance, he hated war. Which obviously makes him suspect for the likes of McThusela (the name of the year, dude! Awesome.), who probably ripped the Man from Nebraska on the old sawdust floor of the House for his opposition to the Philippine War.

  39. 39
    Tzal says:

    McCain dissing William Jennings Bryan like this will hasten his endorsement by T. Herman Zweibel. An event for which I have been breathlessly waiting.

  40. 40
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    I think William Jennings Bryan must have been a candidate when McCain’s parents were teenagers.

    It was Johnny Sid’s mama what give him the line..

  41. 41
    kindness says:

    Well that Depends….

    Does McCain use the all day Depends or just the over night Depends?

  42. 42
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    In John McCain’s day you didn’t run for President: you walked, twelve miles each way, in the snow and uphill with your vice-president strapped to your back. You whippersnappers today don’t even know what’s like to run for cover.

  43. 43
    sean says:

    i just hope i never have to read the headline “President Yells At Cloud”

  44. 44
    carsick says:

    Last weekend a local right wing radio host went on a half hour rant comparing Obama to Bryan. Guess the memo’s been out for awhile and McCain finally figured out how to use a fax machine.

  45. 45
    Cris says:

    Dennis – SGMM:
    McCain is just out there to lull us into a false sense of security until the Republicans nominate their real candidate at the convention.

    Ron Paul!

  46. 46
    Original Lee says:

    Ya know, if we’re going to avoid racism when we talk about Obama and sexism in talking about Clinton, maybe we should give some thought to avoiding ageism in talking about McCain? Lord knows, there are many policy issues and personality characteristics to mock without making fun of old people.

    I believe one of the main reasons Bryan lost in 1896 was due to his “Cross of Gold” speech, which was widely ridiculed for advocating going off the gold standard. The GOP advertised heavily against Bryan in the Midwest and in the South, linking the gold standard to prosperity. They also successfully created a “Bryan is a Populist” meme. Maybe McCain just telegraphed the GOP master plan for the GE with this remark!

    (IIRC, wasn’t Ron Paul pushing to return to the gold standard?)

  47. 47
    rasta says:

    Bloomers or union suits wins the intertubes this day.Though I’m sure depends is the answer.

  48. 48
    Grover Cleveland says:

    Jake – I beg to differ. He gave a detailed speech on toy quality standards in light of the problems with Chinese made toys. He was on a roll before one the security guards present rudely interrupted him:

    McCain: “When I was young, toys were built to last. Look at this junk! It breaks the first time you take it out of the box. And look at these toy soldiers. They’ll break the second I step on ’em. Ah! [Stomp] Stupid! [Smash] Toy! [Stomp] Soldiers! [Vigorous stomping] Break, you stupid!”

    Guard: “All right, come on, Pops. Soldiers won’t bother you any more.”

  49. 49
    Gus says:

    Yes, despite all those dynamic television appearances that Bryan made, he still lost the election. It’s the exact same thing.

  50. 50

    plus C Says: Next week he’ll apologize for voting against the 19th amendment.

    Great line!

    The WJ Bryan comment reminds me of how Karl Christian Rove would always compare himself with Mark Hanna, the kingmaker behind the mental powerhouse of Wm McKinley. Somehow Rove thought that knowing history before WWII made him an intellect. Whatever.

    The point, and I do have one, is that the WJBryan reference could be sign that (a) Rove is trying to help out in his wondrous way, (b) that the Republican party has now become so weirdly conservative that they long for the turn of the *19th* Century, (c) they secretly love Bryan because he opposed Evolution (cf. Scopes trial) and they actually hate McKinley because he brought the hated trust-buster Teddy Roosevelt.

    Now when McCain compares himself to Taft, then I’ll be worried.

  51. 51
    Grand Moff Texan says:

    maybe we should give some thought to avoiding ageism in talking about McCain?

    No, because people choose old age, by not committing suicide or playing guitar for The Pretenders.
    .

  52. 52
    David Hunt says:

    Ah, give McCain a break. It’s perfectly understandable that he’d use Bryan as an example. He has such fond memories of the Scopes Monkey Trial, when Bryan called him as a witness to the Creation.

  53. 53
    Notorious P.A.T. says:

    Now when McCain compares himself to Taft, then I’ll be worried.

    What a porker!

  54. 54
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Ya know, if we’re going to avoid racism when we talk about Obama and sexism in talking about Clinton, maybe we should give some thought to avoiding ageism in talking about McCain?

    I don’t know what the hell yer reading but we’re just making fun of how old they guy is. And last time I checked there isn’t even a thing as oldism.

  55. 55
    John Cole says:

    Did anyone see McCain discussing putting a man on Mars?

  56. 56

    Original Lee Says: … maybe we should give some thought to avoiding ageism in talking about McCain? Lord knows, there are many policy issues and personality characteristics to mock without making fun of old people.

    I’d say there are acceptable jokes about being black, woman, or being old. The question is where to draw the line. When Hillary says something like “I’m used to being in the kitchen” then it’s begging a response on the same level. Same when the oldest man to be a major party nominee makes a refernce from the frickin’ 19th Century.

    P.S. These jokes about Hillary as president I think are within proper humor bounds.

  57. 57
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    McCain tells USA Today:

    “I believe that people are interested very much in substance,” McCain said, contrasting himself with Barack Obama’s charismatic style. “If it was simply style, William Jennings Bryan would have been president.”

    Wasn’t WJB the prosecuting attorney at the Scopes trial?

    One more poke in the eye for the Fundies from John McCain can’t hurt I suppose.

  58. 58
    Grover Cleveland says:

    Here are some great Grampa Simpson quotes…

    http://www.oldmansimpson.com/index.php?page=quotes

  59. 59
    jake says:

    Did anyone see McCain discussing putting a man on Mars?

    Well, what’s the punch line?

  60. 60
    MNPundit says:

    He’s going for a backlash, seniors already don’t like Obama that much cuz he’s a young black man that represents change and if the Media constantly beats on McCain for his age they will unit against him.

    Of course, Seniors are some of the people most concerned about McCain’s age because let’s face it, they think “I am 70 and do I have the energy to run the country? Maybe not…” so really it’s a battle against raw identity politics and personal sense.

    C’mon Greatest Generation! Pull through one more time so you can hand over stuff to another generation like yours (the civic generation).

  61. 61
    croatoan says:

    I guess I’m not the only one struck by the similarities between McSame and Grandpa Simpson.

    I would have also accepted Mr. Magoo or Colonel Tigh from Battlestar Galactica.

  62. 62

    Wow. I mean, I got the reference, but I really think he’s missing his demographic by at least 20 years. Or maybe that was his attempt at high-brow humor.

  63. 63
    cleek says:

    No, because people choose old age, by not committing suicide or playing guitar for The Pretenders.

    low blow. James Honeyman-Scott’s one of my heroes.

  64. 64
    Tom Hilton says:

    I can’t wait for the MTV McCain underwear question:

    “Bloomers or union suits”.

    Depends.

    (That’s the joke we used to make back in the day, when Dole was running for President. You young’uns probably don’t remember.)

  65. 65

    The Wiki gives us a list of ages of presidents. The three oldest were Ronald Reagan, Wm Henry Harrison, and James Buchanan. The three youngest were Teddy Roosevelt, JFK, and Clinton.

    While those stats alone speak for themselves, we should also emphasize that the reason why TR, JFK and WJC were considered good/great presidents had a lot to do with their age.

    For those Reagan partisans on BJ, I understand you like the guy, but many of his failings had to do with his age and infirmity. Buchanan sucked not because of age (but who knows?) And it serves us to emphasize that Harrison died after a month in office because he couldn’t handle Washington’s bad weather.

  66. 66
    Tsulagi says:

    I got the reference, but I really think he’s missing his demographic by at least 20 years.

    20 years? And his demographic? Yeah, I can just see Morans Guy getting the William Jennings Bryan reference and approvingly holding up a sign saying “Dewd!!!”

  67. 67
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    Ya know, if we’re going to avoid racism when we talk about Obama and sexism in talking about Clinton, maybe we should give some thought to avoiding ageism in talking about McCain? Lord knows, there are many policy issues and personality characteristics to mock without making fun of old people.

    Race or gender are likely to little direct effect on someone’s ability to govern. Age definitely can.

    Now don’t feel bad about McCain losing the election. He’ll forget that he lost it in about three months.

  68. 68
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Buchanan sucked

    I call foul.

  69. 69
    w vincentz says:

    Mars? Johnnie knows Mars. He sees it often through the telescope that his good buddy, Galileo, gave him when he was just a whippersnapper.

  70. 70
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    McCain knows that Mars is a threat. H.G. Wells told him so.

  71. 71

    Just Some Fuckhead Says: I call foul.

    Aw man, I didn’t mean that. Yeex. Well, live by the historical analogy…

    BTW, I always found it funny that the Log Cabin guys identified with Lincoln when Buchanan was much more of a modern day Republican.

  72. 72
    Joe Beese says:

    It’s fun ridiculing old people.

    I’m not saying that’s good or bad. That’s just my observation.

    That “Depends” joke cracked me up.

    My favorite Dole joke was, I believe, Jay Leno’s…

    “Bob Dole is so old that when he won California, he claimed it in the name of Spain.”

  73. 73
    JDRhoades says:

    To his credit, McCain knows who William Jennings Bryant is, unlike certain current Presidents who shall remain nameless.

    You mean McCain’s an elitist!?

  74. 74

    Also, what do we do about the fact that McCain tells age jokes about himself (see here from SNL).

  75. 75
    Dreggas says:

    McCain is also claiming he’s a “Goldwater Republican” and not a “Bush Republican” forgetting that Goldwater was pro-choice and his wife opened the first planned parenthood in AZ, also neglecting the fact that Goldwater was somewhat of an environmentalist/member of the Sierra Club from what I hear.

  76. 76

    He won’t have to do much outreach work at the Hildabeast camp. At her site the Amazons are vowing to work their @sses off to get McCain elected so Hellary can ride in on her white mare and return to the fight like Napoleon returning from exile. You could tell me they all cut one breast off like the original Amazons to show solidarity and i truly wouldn’t be surprised.

    I mean, WTF?

    My friend just shook his head and said, “Forget it, Lance. It’s Gina-town.”

  77. 77
    Snail says:

    Dennis Miller once had a joke about Strom Thurmond escorting a group of tourists around Washington. While looking at the Supreme Court building, he said, “I remember when this was just a pool of cooling magma.”

  78. 78
    NR says:

    Has anyone checked out McCain’s campaign schedule? For June, he has nine fundraisers and three town halls scheduled.

    That’s three public appearances for the entire month of June.

    The guy is barely even campaigning.

  79. 79
    ThatLeftTurnInABQ says:

    That’s three public appearances for the entire month of June.

    Well it does take a long time for that horse-n-buggy to get from one end of the country to another.

  80. 80
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    The guy is barely even campaigning.

    Here’s Why

    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

  81. 81

    NR Says: The guy is barely even campaigning.

    Reminds me of that youngin’ Fred “Lightning” Thompson.

    Seriously, the guy had a three month vacation while Hillary was wearing the dynamite-vest, and the Tuesday night speech was the best they could do?

    As other commenter here and elsewhere have mentioned, I think there’s more and more signs that the establishment GOP has basically given up on McCain. They didn’t like him to begin with (he was a maverick/traitor too much on the things they cared about, viz. PORK). If he won’t make them rich, then they may sit POTUS out and concentrate the money and electioneering talent to the teetering congressional races.

    What would the signs be of them giving up on McCain? If we describe some indicators then we can watch for those signs to get a good idea about how much of an electoral crush it’ll be in November.

  82. 82
    w vincentz says:

    Yup, my friends. Time for Cindy to hook up the team on the “straight talk” Conastoga.
    Cindy always says it best, “Gittup!”

  83. 83

    Just Some Fuckhead Says: Here’s Why (Front Porch Campaign) If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

    Nice catch JSF. They are *really* taking this McKinley/Hanna/Bryan thing to heart, ain’t they.

    Well, to quote GOPer Monty Burns, we survived 6 years of McKinleynomics, we can survive this too.

    And, BTW, do you think McKinley is his inspiration because of the last name?

  84. 84
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    McCain’s health care plan relies on free market solutions. Great. Let him put his money where his mouth is by giving up his government health care and buying his own health insurance. I’m sure that, as a melanoma survivor, he should be able to purchase a healthcare package at an affordable price. Do it Johnny! Buy your own health care, as you want the rest of America to do, and then tell us how much it costs you.
    Do as you say, not as you do, Johnny. I’m sure that it’ll be inspiring.

  85. 85
    cleek says:

    Also, what do we do about the fact that McCain tells age jokes about himself

    then we need to tell better age jokes about him. we can’t cede age-joke-supremacy.

  86. 86
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    we can’t cede age-joke-supremacy

    Because, if we do..

  87. 87
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    McCain’s health care plan relies on free market solutions.

    Good, because I’ve always thought it was the lack of a market-based economy in 400 B.C. that really kept Humorism from taking hold.

  88. 88
    Dennis - SGMM says:

    Because, if we do..

    Too late:

    Osama bin Laden and a group of young jihadis were sleeping in a cramped cave. In the middle of the night, Osama begins shouting, “Quick! Get me a woman!”
    “Quiet, revered one,” cautions the jihadi sleeping next to him.
    “First, we are in a cave, high in the mountains, far from even the smallest village.”
    “Second, with no lack of respect, you are old and infirm from your struggles against the infidel.”
    “Third, it’s my dick you’re holding.”

  89. 89
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Too late:

    lmao

  90. 90
    w vincentz says:

    JSF,
    Johnnie admitted that he didn’t know much about economics.
    Heck, it’s difficult to transition from barter to currency.
    Market-based economy?
    I’ll trade you this here chicken, my friend, for three of your cabbages. Deal?

  91. 91
    AkaDad says:

    Everyone knows that I would never make age jokes…

  92. 92
    Cain says:

    Did anyone see McCain discussing putting a man on Mars?

    No doubt, he left something behind when he migrated here.

    cain

  93. 93
    Splitting Image says:

    I think this was a huge mistake by McCain. He’s probably trying to portray Bryan as a talented Democratic speaker with a gift for losing elections, but he is probably best remembered for prosecuting the Scopes trial.

    This indicates to me that he is probably more well known and more popular among evangelical Christians, which is to say Huckabee voters.

    Look at a picture of the 1896 election map:

    Bryan’s states in Blue

    and compare it to the 2004 election map:

    Bush’s states in Red

    and see where Bryan is most likely to be highly regarded today. As an economic populist who defied conventional wisdom, he is probably closer in spirit to Ronald Reagan. I think it’s safe to say the Democrats were the party of ideas in their day, in the sense that they challenged conventional wisdom.

    McCain doesn’t have that great an idea who is base is, does he?

  94. 94
    Jay says:

    Too funny, John.

  95. 95
    Cyrus says:

    Ya know, if we’re going to avoid racism when we talk about Obama and sexism in talking about Clinton, maybe we should give some thought to avoiding ageism in talking about McCain? Lord knows, there are many policy issues and personality characteristics to mock without making fun of old people.

    I think this makes the case pretty well that ageism is not comparable to racism or sexism.

    In my view, the biggest reason age is a problem is the worldview. Forget about health; presidents get good doctors, and John McCain’s mom is still around, so genetics might be on his side.

    But he was born in 1936, and that was a long time ago. When John McCain was my age, Joe McCarthy was still a respected figure. A state-of-the-art computer was a UNIVAC. President Truman tried to nationalize every steel mill in the country. The country of Israel was less than 10 years old. Dennis the Menace was appearing in newspapers for the first time. I think that stuff could seriously affect how a president approaches problems.

  96. 96
    Rick Taylor says:

    I still can’t believe McCain threw William Jennings Bryan under the bus.

  97. 97
    Eric says:

    Ya know, if we’re going to avoid racism when we talk about Obama and sexism in talking about Clinton, maybe we should give some thought to avoiding ageism in talking about McCain? Lord knows, there are many policy issues and personality characteristics to mock without making fun of old people.
    ————————————————————–

    The age of retirement for the federal government is 65 years old.

  98. 98
    Joyce says:

    McCain is just out there to lull us into a false sense of security until the Republicans nominate their real candidate at the convention.

    The Freepers keep hoping that this is a ruse and that McCain will bow out for health reasons at the convention.

  99. 99
    Original Lee says:

    I think we can make jokes about McCain being old that don’t play into negative and discriminatory stereotypes of being old. Some of the jokes on this thread about different politicians being older than dirt are very funny. But like A Different JC said upthread, there’s a humor line for jokes about being old, and I just thought we were starting to have more posts on the side I’m personally uncomfortable with than the other.

    I believe McCain’s age is a problem, at least in part because I don’t think he has the stamina any more to be President. We’ve already had a good, recent example of how a signficantly older than average President operates in Reagan (Alzheimer’s aside); I’m not sure McCain is very good at delegating, and I certainly don’t trust who he’s likely to be delegating to, given who is high up in his campaign right now. I’m not even sure McCain can make it all the way to November, but maybe that’s part of the Rovian strategy. It sure would be a good movie: Make McCain wear himself out campaigning against Obama, then nod and wink to everyone that Romney will sub for McCain and win the Reagan Democrats over in a sympathy vote.

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