Look! they say. Lookit what I did! Isn't it cool? I did that!
As you might expect, the current undisputed master of this demonstration of giggly self-congratulation (the more giggly, the better, since the idea is to downplay the mean-spiritedness) has to be Sarah Palin. From here:
“I’ve really gotta hand it to Joe the Plumber over there in Toledo,” Palin said at a rally today in Lancaster, Pa., referring to Joe Wurzelbacher, who was made famous by Sen. John McCain in Wednesday night’s final presidential debate. “Somehow he got Barack Obama to finally state his intentions in really plain language.”Ooh! Ooh! That! Ooh! See? See what I did there? That was good, wasn't it? Oh yeah. He's not getting up from that. Look how cool that was!
Now obviously maintaining a healthy facade of self-delusion for the sake of the remains of your own dignity is essential in a nosediving campaign, which is why Palin chose not to bring up the fact that they're getting their asses handed to them, and why they continue the endless JtP drumbeat even though no one gives a shit. I understand that need, but there's a limit.
Palin is so good at playing the role of the precocious child looking for approval because that's the approximate level of intellectual complexity she brings to her every stump speech, but for the sake of fairness, I'll note she's not alone. Remember, back when Barack Abdul Omar al-Blackguy wasn't yet being called a one-man latter-day red menace, how we learned that John McCain had like a gajillion houses?
By the way, the answer is, John McCain has seven homes. There’s just a fundamental gap of understanding between John McCain’s world and what people are going through every single day here in America.Translation: aw, snap.
Now I know I'm biased because I voted for Obama and all but I find it slightly funnier to prod McCain with this sort of thing, because old, cranky guys who you could easily see literally throwing you off their lawn. I think, if nothing else, that that explains the recent resurgence of prominent McCain supporter Wilford Brimley.
When people talk about "the tone in Washington" it's usually in the middle of a finger-wagging session about how Republicans and Democrats say mean things to each other sometimes. All that stuff about "sticking to the issues" and bipartanship and all that crap is fine, but as far as "tone" goes, I would happily settle for wannabe elected officials acting just slightly less pleased with themselves.