Paper tiger

McCain folds on the “tire gauge” issue.

If you let it scare you, it looks formidable. If you push it, it falls over.

Barack Obama seems to have rammed a tire gauge up John McCain’s … campaign. This is the second time (the gas tax holiday during the primaries) he’s stood tough and turned an opponent’s attack into a winning issue.

Footnote When I grow up, I want to be a con artist with Jonathan Martin as my victim. Since when does deciding your bluff has failed and throwing in your hand counted as “intellectual honesty”?

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: