Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The going gets nasty

McCain just compared Obama to Paris Hilton. Oh, boy, those are really fighting words. If I were Barack, I think I would be justified in challenging John to a duel, or maybe even having a hit put out on him. I didn't think things would get this bad this fast.
What McCain is saying, of course, is that Obama is all glitz and no substance. I have to admit that this is a reasonable tactic to use, although comparing him to Paris and the like is a little much. But the idea is out there, isn't it? On my home page, there's a popup that asks if Obama is "the man with the plan, or flash in the pan?" (BTW, I wonder how many people know where that expression "flash in the pan" came from. Answer at the end of this blog).
So, is Obama a lightweight? His foreign policy experience is virtually zero, which is not necessarily bad, as long as he remembers that people lie, cheat, distort, make empty promises, and do anything else necessary to advance their national or religious agendas. He also should remember that what T. Roosevelt said about speaking and sticks.
During the American Revolution, two men played important roles in securing the help of the French: Adams and Franklin. Franklin met guile with guile, oil with oil, schmooze with schmooze, while Adams went straight to the point in neatly American puritan firm impassioned stress. Which technique worked? It depends on whose biography you read. I tend toward the Adams route. Lay it out. Speak politely, but don't hide the stick.
Who is more likely to act the way I want? At this moment, I'd have to say McCain, though Obama may surprise me. As with everything else, it's too close to call.
"Flash in the pan" means that if you're shooting a flintlock rifle, the small charger of powder under the hammer flared but it didn't ignite the powder in the barrel and your rifle is not going to fire and the big bear coming at you gets a meal.

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