John McCain told a group of editors and journalists that the comments Senator Obama made in Pennsylvania were "elitist." Earlier today, I spoke with a staff person here who comes from a small Pennsylvania town, is white, and works in a lower managerial position. When he heard me talking about Senator Obama's comments, who came over and told me that he was talking with his family in Pennsylvania and that is pretty much how they look at it--people are angry because they are "hurting" economically and prone to chase their tails politically around issues like gun control and gay marriage. This guy, who I don't even think is necessarily supporting Obama, isn't the son and grandson of admirals.
But McCain went on tell the group that small town Americans were the backbone of the country (politicians have been saying that since there was universal white male suffrage and cities were small) and that "These are the people who produced a generation who made the world safe for democracy. These are the people that have fundamental cultural, spiritual and other values that in my view have very little to do with their economic condition." To say what Obama has said, McCain went on, was to express a "fundamental contradiction about what America is all about."
You don't have to be a Marxist to understand that peoples consciousness, however fantastic, reflects their social-economic conditions and experience, their being. The United States is a multi-ethnic nation with its own remarkable culture and civilization, not a set of political and social conservative institutions and ideologies which exist to protect corporate leadership and the upper classes, who are the real elites in all class divided societies.
Although McCain for his own reasons threw in Woodrow Wilson's old World War I slogan about "making the world safe for democracy"(which had little to do with what Wilson's policy really was, although he has a penchant to go back to wars whatever the issue) he didn't dare mention what Senator Obama has in effect been campaigning against, the last two
freedoms of Franklin Roosevelt's World War II Four Freedoms slogan, "Freedom from Want and Freedom from Fear."
It is fear and want that McCain perpetrate and Hillary Clinton in her attacks against Obama is appeasing--fear and want which produce scapegoating and political escapism, attacling messengers for truthful messages.
"Freedom" without social responsibility is not an American or any other value, but a desire that exploiters everywhere promote to solidify and intensify their wealth and power. The founders of McCain's Republican party, who were called in the 1850s, "black Republicans," and enemies of both the constitution and American "liberty" for challenging the expansion of slavery and the Slave Power would understand the emptiness of McCain's remarks, as would Franklin Roosevelt, who was great at mocking his rightwing political enemies who always wrapped themselves in the flag and talked about the "American Way of Life" while they pursued policies that made life insecure for the majority of Americans.
Unfortunately, Hillary Clinton has in this and other instances given McCain and the rightwing Republican propaganda machine ammunition to use.
As a few postscripts, McCain told the editors that he would "fall into a deep depression" if he lost the election. Apparently the growing and very plausible fears of millions of Americans that the present economic crisis will be more, much more than just another recession, is comical to him, a little bit like the joke in the present commercial where a group of people are lamenting the weak dollar only to have someone come in and praise what he good on a fast food chain's "dollar menu," which leads them all to begin to hail the strength of the dollar.
Speaking of fast food chains, McCain, who will be seventy-two later this year was given coffee with cream and sugar and a number of Dunkin Dough nuts with "sprinkles" which he called his favorites. It is obvious that McCain could, along with realistic economic advisers, use some realistic nutritional advisers.