McCain’s rudeness

Ambinder and Ezra Klein want to make McCain’s atrocious rudeness to Obama the central narrative. I certainly picked up on it, and hoped (but didn’t expect) that undecideds would mind it as much as I did. After all, it’s of a piece with his conduct, and his campaign’s, all season: they have bottomless contempt for Obama, and either can’t conceal it or think they can get the voters to share it. Ambinder mentions Dukakis’s condescension to Bush the Mediocre as portrayed by SNL; the other obvious reference point is Gore’s famous sighing at the lies of Bush the Appalling.

I’m so used to the media narrative mirroring Republican spin that I hardly dared hope for this. But what I sometimes forget is that John McCain’s antics this whole season have terminally annoyed and disgusted the people who cover politics; he’s disrespected not only his opponents and the voters, but the reporters as well. They’re not going to give him any breaks.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: