NEW ORLEANS— John McCain stammered his way through one of his more memorable speeches ever Tuesday night, but unfortunately it was memorable for the number of speaking miscues off the teleprompter, not the content. It was memorable for the forced, creepy smiles at the end of sentences that didn’t warrant them. Even his repetitious blinking was unnerving. And with more than twenty word fumbles through the course of this painfully long Geritol info-mercial, it was particularly telling that CNN felt it necessary to put a “HAPPENING NOW” tag directly over McCain’s right lung.
I knew the evening was going to go badly when the Phoney from Arizoney began by adding an extra syllable to “New Or-le-ans.” Bush’s constant mangling of “nu-cu-lar” sprang instantly to mind, and thus a speech designed to separate the two men joined at the fragile hip of John McCain was doomed to failure.
Then this mis-speak, only two and a half minutes in: “I believe that still; but we must rise the occasion as we always have.” Well, he didn’t “rise the occasion.” He sank, and he continued to sink until CNN cut away. But all was not lost. My favorite McBushism from the speech was this line: “The right change will stop impeding Americans from doing what they have always done, overcome every obstacle to our progress, turn challenges and opportunity into opportunities. . .”
Over-powered by what the press called the “Lime Green Monster,” the background from hell gave McCain a pallor only a cadaver could love. But with timing that could only have been arranged through divine providence, McCain dropped this turd-bomb bomb bomb right before one of the most historic speeches ever to be delivered in America, Barack Obama’s announcement to the world that a black and white man had turned an opportunity into an opportunity to run for president of the United States.
A venue tip to McCain’s advance people: Never— ever— choose a venue where the acoustics are such that one big-mouth supporter can rise teh occasion by drowning out the rest of the audience. Very creepy. And speaking of loudest. McCain drew his loudest applause when he read without error, “They might think me an imperfect servant of our country, which I surely am; but I am her servant, first, last, and always.” Great.
But we don’t need another “servant” in the white house. We need a leader.