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June 24, 2009

Meghan McCain Thinks With Her Hair

This clip from Meghan McCain's appearance on Real Time With Bill Maher has been making its way around the blogosphere this week thanks to the exchange between McCain and Democratic strategist Paul Begala. Let's watch:

McCain: The Obama administration really has to stop completely blaming everything on its predecessor completely. And I really am sick of hearing 'oh well we were handed this, we were handed this'. I know! Everyone knows, but we need to move on.

Maher: You think that's what Obama is doing?

McCain: I do, to a degree.

Begala: Not to enough of a degree. I'm sorry. Not nearly enough. Ronald Reagan blamed Jimmy Carter every day for eight years. In the speech -- in the speech, what President Bush said one of the things he's had to adjust to.

McCain: I wasn't born yet, so I don't know.

Begala: I wasn't born during the French Revolution, but I know about it.

Maher: He's a mean man, Paul Begala.

McCain: You clearly know everything. So, and I'm just the blonde sitting here.

No, Meghan. You're just the person sitting there, and you're in the chair because you're supposed to have some idea of what you're talking about. You know, a compelling argument or two and some evidence to back it up.

Meghan McCain gets so mad (often rightfully so) at people like Laura Ingraham who criticize her appearance or dismiss her because of her age rather than engaging with her actual statements about the issues. But Paul Begala didn't call her fat or tell her that she was too young to remember things so she shouldn't talk about them. Just the opposite - he challenged her based solely on what she was saying. He countered her argument with his own. Was he a little sarcastic about it? Sure, but so was she.

In her response to Laura Ingraham, McCain said that she "expected substantive criticism from conservative pundits for [her] views", so she criticized Ingraham for making fun of her age and weight "instead of intellectually debating our ideological differences". And yet, in this situation, she was the one who chose to defend herself from Begala's criticism of her statements by cracking a joke about her age and then implying that she was being dismissed as just another dumb blonde when nothing of the kind was happening. Even if she totally didn't know what Begala was talking about, or just disagreed with him, she could have responded by saying something like 'well I'm sure you're more familiar with that time period than I am, but even if you're right, that doesn't mean that it's the best strategy for the Obama administration now'. Instead she decided to pull an Ingraham...on herself.

Either Meghan has internalized the common arguments against her so completely that she's now preemptively making them against herself, or she's being a hypocrite on this one.

1 comment:

Renee said...

In this performance she proved that she really is Republican because of responding directly she resorted to hyperbole.