Thinking more about the smear campaign...
There's a whole lot crazy white racists who are going to be pissed beyond their ability to cope when Obama is elected. (Cracker heads will be exploding on the day he's going to actually occupy the White House-- A Black Man in the White House.)
And the Republicans have already been setting up a narrative for these folks, a narrative that manages to blame liberals and minorities for the economic crisis, says they won the presidency by fraud, says Obama is a secret Muslim, a terrorist lover, and a radical. The trouble is: this narrative will demand something of its users. It will demand resistance. If I believed that a radical, terorist loving, secret Muslim had taken the presidency by fraud I'd feel compelled to do something.
(Then again, I do, in fact, feel that a radical, terrorist-loving, secret narcissist took the presidency by fraud, and I haven't done anything about it. So there's hope: they may just sit around feeling depressed and impotent like I have! Then again again, probably best not to assume it.)
Now, McCain and Palin know better, and so does Hannity and his ilk, and they know the narrative is only going to work on a subpopulation of their potential voters-- a subpopulation that wouldn't be voting for Obama, anyway. And they're doing this at the expense of going after the swing voters, who may be uninformed, but are unlikely to be crazy white racists. Why?
Though there is not inconsiderable comfort in thinking Republicans stupid, perhaps the true aim is creating in the short term an angry mob mentality, and in the long run a dangerous right wing movement.
Perhaps they saw the writing on the wall: the candidacy is doomed. Worse, there is likely to be a historical shift in power; Bush has sunk the Party for a generation. And all their strategies and tactics take that into account. Cripple them in the short run, build a new movement in the long run.
Labels: McCain, Obama, red meat