In the waning hours of the political campaign, with his political star already eclipsed by the popularity of his own running mate and his insistence on abandoning most of the principles he used to swear he stood for, John McCain has gotten a little desperate. Or, rather, his campaign staff has, since John McCain himself still has a job to go back to on November 5th. Well, except for that his campaign is fully staffed with highly paid corporate lobbyists "on leave" so most of them do, too, except that they won't be able to make as much money from clients if their guy loses.Anyway, the point being, McCain's policy prescriptions, such as, have failed to capture the imagination of the middle of the American electorate the same way they failed to capture the imagination of the Republican-controlled Congress when most of them were proposed by the Bush Administration. But having hung out with enough fear-mongers and race-baiters, McCain's staff does have some ideas of what they think might just turn it around: character assassination. That's right, bring on the smears! I mean, to a degree, I guess the Obama camp is lucky that the smear-tastic new advertisement by McCain is such a hack job that even Time scribe Jay Carney wonders how in the world it got this bad. Well, it's pretty obvious:

  1. Take an ad you already started that was intended to highlight how much to Democratic leadership sucked on the bailout plan
  2. Realize that most Americans aren't polling that way now
  3. Shoehorn stuff about Bill Ayers into it the same way you've randomly shoehorned it into the campaign
  4. Hope no one notices the irony of one candidate for the highest office in the land accusing the other of "ambition," let alone the racial undertones of accusing him of being too ambitious
  5. TBD
  6. Electoral success

I mean, I get why they're trying to do with it. Since blaming the entirety of the financial meltdown on minorities โ€” and thereby Barack Obama, since he's "one of them" โ€” somehow just didn't catch hold with enough of the American electorate, they're going to try to pin it on "terrorist" Bill Ayers. That's, like, a foreign name, right? The next step, obviously, since Republicans are "calling" for the McCain campaign to go after Jeremiah Wright, is to find a way to do it without calling into question Sarah Palin's own questionable religious affiliations. Ooh! Ooh! I know! They'll just "leak" a story to the Republican-leaning Wall Street Journal about how they're totally being pushed to bring up Jeremiah Wright but their candidate is way too honorable for those sorts of shenanigans. People's religions should be off the table! And then they get to soften the image of their candidate while bringing it up and make it look like he's not the one attacking anything even as they send off the Vice Presidential candidate and the surrogates with plenty of anti-Obama talking points on both issues. Now, if only every time you mention his name, you can get someone in the crowd to shout, "Traitor!"... Yeah, that should distract those stupid Americans long enough that they forget that McCain's economic plans are Bush 2.0, that he wants to keep America's military engaged and dying in Iraq, that his new mortgage bailout plan is not only Hillary Clinton's idea but extremely costly and that his health care plan is the worst idea since teabagging Charlie Keating. They're in it to win it! McCain-Palin 2008 Launches New TV Ad: "Ambition" [John McCain] Bill Ayres Gutted Your 401K. Who Knew? [Swampland] "South Park's" Investing Lesson [Motley Fool] McCain Campaign Is at Odds Over Negative Attacks' Scope [Wall Street Journal] Does Sarah Palin Have a Pentecostal Problem? [Time] McCain Supporter Calls Obama A 'Traitor' At Campaign Rally [Think Progress]