John McCain's response to the looming economic catastrophe has been nothing short of erratic, clueless, and so impulsive and reckless that it seems clear he literally had no idea what to do and so they tried one thing after another after another trying to see what might work.
Just off the top of my head, beginning on the day the crisis occured, McCain has, sometimes literally within hours:
-stated that the fundamentals of our economy were strong.
-Said that the economy was in a serious crisis.
-The guy trying to paint himself as a decisive, take charge leader emerged to say he wanted a "9-11 style" committee to "study" the issue and come up with a solution. (read: dither around until the economy collapse while shifting any potential risk of blame to others.)
-Decided the solution was to come out and act tough and say he'd fire the head of the SEC if he were president. (The president can not fire the head of the SEC, which McCain a short time later referred to as the "FEC")
-Paulson issued a three page summary of the White House plan to inject $700 billion in a bail-out plan.
-Early one morning, Obama reached out to McCain and suggested they issue a joint statement on the crisis in order to keep presidential politics out of the issue and ensure that both parties are able to work for the good of the country without trying to take credit or assign blame.
-McCain agrees, then blind-sides Obama by appearing on TV with no notice to the Obama campaign and making a blatantly political stunt.
-Out of the blue, McCain decides that he, someone who admittedly doesn't know much about economic matters, must "suspend" his campaign and rush to D.C. to single-handedly solve the problem. He simultaneously announces that he might skip the first presidential debate in order to deal with this crisis. He trys to spin this as his putting the country first over politics.
By doing this, he ensures that presidential politics is injected into the matter, thus destroying the delicate bi-partisan negotiations.
-After this announcement, McCain spends 22 hours in New York appearing with Katie Couric and at the Clinton World forum, having dinner, then finally gets around to going to D.C. the next day.
-TENS DAYS after the crisis began, and three days after Sec. Paulson released his bail-out plan, (and two days after he announced the "suspension" of his campaign,) McCain revealed to an interviewer that he couldn't comment on the proposed White House bail-out plan because, stunningly, he hadn't gotten around to reading the three page plan yet. This alone is reason enough to disqualify him from the presidency.
-During the 24 hours plus between the time McCain tried to inject some drama into his sputtering campaign by announcing he was going to ride to the rescue and his actual arrival at the photo op set up by Bush, Dems and Republicans announced that they were making progress and had agreed in principle on a bail-out plan. McCain then arrived and the deal fell apart.
-McCain brought a campaign aide to this supposedly critically important White House summit, (which turned out to be nothing but a photo op.) Obama, coming to get something done, brought one of his senate office staffers.
-McCain sat mute during the vaunted meeting at the White House that he'd "suspended" his campaign for, only speaking briefly at the end and offering no direction on the matter.
-McCain's campaign was not suspended in any way. Ads still ran, the entire campaign kept campaigning, surrogates kept up their appearances. In short, it was a sham.
-There's no deal as of today. The house Republicans blew up the entire process by refusing to even negotiate the matter.
-Despite his statement that he would not debate until a deal was struck, McCain leaves D.C. after blowing up the process and goes to Mississippi to debate.
Is this the steady leadership that McCain pretends to offer?
When he goes on and on tonight about how all this bullshit was a principled and heroic act by a selfless public servent who, without regard to political cost, dropped everything to help his beloved country in her hour of need, will you kind of throw up a little in the back of your throat?