Like a lot of people I've come to really respect and like John Cole at Baloon Juice, at least since he barfed up the koolaid and came on over to the sunny side of the street, but today he posted this:
I know all the bobbleheads are talking about Pawlenty or Crist for McCain as VP, but for some reason I still think he is going to pick Huckabee. I think people are radically underestimating how important it is for McCain to be surrounded by people he likes. Part of the reason his campaign has gone off the rails is because he feels comfortable with a bunch of people who are really leading him astray. For whatever reasons, McCain has become quite comfortable with the fetid bilge that is the right-wing Rove retreads, and that is why his campaign has gone off the rails:
Which leads me to pose this zen koan "what is the sound of the man on the bus when he's talking and no one is listening? To put it in a longer, more ranting form:
I just don't get the continued insistence that the campaign John McCain is running isn't the campaign John McCain *wants to run.* Is John McCain not actually the candidate in charge of his own campaign? If he's "comfortable with the rovians" doesn't that mean hes, well, comfortable with the rovians? If he's down in the fetid bilge don't we have to assume he wants to be there? Sure, he doesn't want to *lose* by running a bad campaign. But apparently he wants to win by running *this* campaign, with all its dishonesties, meannesses, cheap shots and racism. That's actually the campaign he's running, and only by some odd leap of the imagination--John McCain, prisoner of fate? John McCain, bewildered old codger?--can we argue or assume its not exactly the campaign he wants to run. What does it take to grasp that there is a central connection between John McCain, bluff hearty happy warrior on the straight talk express and John McCain bitter old crank on the down low white guy rulz and gay/black/islamofascists drulz bus? And that central point of connection is John McCain himself.