Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Whats wrong with John McCain

Why is John McCain so far behind in the polls ? It seems a long time ago since St Paul when his post convention bump had McCain as favourite to be the 44th President. But that was jut five weeks ago. What has happened since. Today most pollsters say its going to be President Obama in January. I have a theory. The sub prime crisis in the states has obviously hurt McCain but most conservative analysts in the US are angry at him for not seizing an opportunity amidst all the chaos. He has consistently failed to tap into the anger on main street at the gross incompetence of several CEO's, many of whom have links to the democrats. He has appeared unsure of himself and of where his anger should be directed and I know why.

Ronald Reagan believed in the total deregulation of the market

On many occasions throughout the campaign John McCain has spoken about his two political idols, Ronald Reagan and Teddy Roosevelt. Both of these former Presidents despite serving during completely different times had a similar view of the world. John McCain clearly shares this view of projecting American power around the world. We all know John McCain's foreign policy credentials. We know where he stands and what he believes about Russia, Iraq, Iran and the wider war on terror. A mere 18 months ago he is on record as saying that foreign policy is his strength and that he is weak on macroeconomics. We should not be surprised, he is a military man. So when the unprecedented global financial crisis struck last month John McCain had to look to his two inspirations for guidance and there in lies the problem.

Teddy Roosevelt confronted Wall Street and the tycoons

Ronald Reagan and Teddy Roosevelt were polar opposite on the role of the free market. Reagan was probably the 20th century's biggest advocate of deregulation. If he were alive today he would be defending wall street and most likely insisting that the problem was caused by excessive attempts at regulating the mortgage industry to cater for the poor. Teddy on the other hand, the crusader against the tycoon, hero of the working man and nemesis of JP Morgan would probably want to tear wall street down in the wake of the fiasco. So John McCain was left asking himself on the crisis, am I a Ronald Reagan or a Teddy Roosevelt, and I don't think he has quite managed to answer it. For all his campaigns talk of "Who is Barack Obama"? we don't really know who McCain is when it comes to the role of the free market and this has been exposed. Obama has not excelled in recent weeks but at least we know where he stands. He believes that wall street has to be properly regulated. As I have maintained in previous posts, all he has to do now is break even, don't screw up and allow his momentum to carry him over the line while voters continue to blame the republicans and McCain fails to portray a clear message on the crisis.

The final debate is tonight. John McCain has one last chance to turn it around. Unless he goes all out for it and successfully blames the democrats for the crisis and the audience buys it, his presidential ambitions are dead as disco.


Confucius said...

John McCain is so far behind in the polls because of this


I mean, come on. Who wants a President that pulls faces a face resembling that of a lizard.

If this was the film X-Men, McCain would be Senator Kelly (the guy who claims to be human, but really is a mutant lizard thing). The resemblance is uncanny!

Ted Leddy said...


You're right

This photo has been posted all over the American media. I think it might actually do him harm. Image is so important in US politics. Famously Kennedy beat Nixon in the first televised debate in 1960 because he was may more media savy. He wore make up and looked the part where as Nixon, who wouldn't use make up saying it was for gays sweated and looked uncomfortable throughout. Interestingly people who listened to the 1960 debate on radio said Nixon won, those who watched it on tv said it was JFK's. It just goes to show the power of perception. Throughout wednesday's debate the tv audience, which watched a split screen showing both candidates, saw a calm cool Obama and a flustered and uncomfortable McCain. Even though McCain performed better than Obama in my opinion, Obama won the debate and it now looks like the election.