Note to Steve Schmidt

Steve Schmidt calls a conference call to complain about being called a liar.
Tells several silly lies.
Gets called on it by Ben Smith.

If you’re going to hold a conference call to complain about being called a liar, you avoid lying in the course of the conference call.

Otherwise, you’re likely to get stuff like this written about you:

McCain camp criticism rife with errors

By BEN SMITH

Sen. John McCain’s top campaign aides convened a conference call today to complain of being called “liars.” They pressed the media to scrutinize specific elements of Sen. Barack Obama’s record.

But the call was so rife with simple, often inexplicable misstatements of fact that it may have had the opposite effect: to deepen the perception, dangerous to McCain, that he and his aides have little regard for factual accuracy.

Footnote And try not accusing respected reporters of being “in the tank” for the other side. The Reporters’ Guild is a fearsome enterprise.

Second footnote Note the difference between the two campaigns. When Obama was behind in the polls, lots of outsiders were panicking, but the campaign just kept on keepin’ on. Now that McCain is behind, his top people are flailing about wildly.

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: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com