11:33 pm: CNN announces that John McCain pulled an interview with Larry King . . . specifically as a result of the infamous Campbell Brown interview with RNC spokesman Tucker Bounds . . . because McCain says the interview went "over the line." (Long pause, brow crinkles.) Ummmmmm . . . what line would that be, John? The First Ammendment? Campbell Brown stepped over the Bill of fucking Rights? No. She just stepped over the John-McCain-is-a-decrepit-grumpy-baby line. He's taking his Vice Presidential candidate and he's going home. No wonder he doesn't want to engage in meaningful dialogue with the leaders of Iran -- he can't even engage in meaningful dialogue with an over-the-hill talk show host!
11:15 pm: Finally, CNN acknowledges that there's a war going on . . . in St. Paul. Like right outside the door. As in cops going apeshit and reenacting the fall of Baghdad, lobbing tear gas and stun grenades at a bunch of spoiled teenagers in skinny jeans and bandannas. Yes, the anarchists are kind of annoying. But you didn't need to shoot shit at them. All you needed to do was grab a bullhorn, point down the block, and shout, "Hey look -- the dude from Crass is sitting in with Howard Zinn!", and they'd have been out of your hair in about 10 seconds.
11:03 pm: Song for backstabbin' Joe Lieberman: dude, Gergen is fuckin' pissed. You better watch your back, son.
10:52 pm: Liberman blah blah blah blah. Nobody will be able to tell you two things about this speech tomorrow. I can't even tell you anything about it, like, this second. Mainly because I've been too busy watching the newly-unearthed Sarah Palin church video, which -- trust us, go watch it now -- could very well be the end for her. Unless America's ready for yet another batshit-crazy Jesus freak who prays for pipelines and has no need of foreign policy advice unless it comes from God. If that doesn't get her, then we'lll see what the Right thinks about this: she's been caught on tape granting "honorary citizenship" to dangerous un-green-carded immigrants.
10:37 pm: Republicans are so weird. CNN showing what I can only assume is the Texas delegation -- who appear to be Seig-Heil-ing the podium with their cowboy hats. And the Pennsylvanians are waving the Terrible Towel! Democrats everywhere shuddering: oh, Lord, give us Karl Rove naked, give us waterboarding . . . but not the Terrible Towel!
10:35 pm: After watching Fred Thompson deliver what sounds like the RNC keynote -- you probably won't see a better speech in the next two days -- Republicans have got to be asking: why didn't John McCain nominate this guy to be Vice-President? Oh, wait, right: he isn't under an ethics investigation and doesn't have a pregnant teenage daughter. Sorry, forgot.
10:25 pm: Fred Thompson: "It's pretty clear there are two questions we will never have to ask
ourselves, 'Who is this man?' and 'Can we trust this man with the
Presidency?' " That phrase, "never have to ask ourselves," is emblematic of the underlying difference between the Republican and Democratic approaches to hardball politics, and why the Republicans so often win: the Republican strategy is to pre-empt critical thinking with appeals to lizard-brain fear and hate; the Democratic arguments require the American people to perform a semblance of rational thought. If anyone has read the headlines of the past two days, they'd be asking themselves precisely the two questions Fred Thompson doesn't want you thinking about, although they might be phrased slightly differently: "Who the hell are you and what have you done with John McCain?", and "How does he expect us to trust him with the Presidency when he can't even vet his own VP nomination?"
9:45 pm: I will fistfight anyone who says that the dude who jumped on the grenade is not part of my America. That kind of heroism belongs not to Republicans, not to Democrats, but to all of us who live in these United States. Dunno about you, but in the neighborhood where I grew up, that guy's an all-around hero. You probably knew someone like him: a little crazy, quite possibly a little Rain Man ("Hey Mike, wanna box of chocolates?" "Roger that"), but definitely a motherfucking world-class badass and braver than John Wayne. Here's the thing: you go into a firefight, that's the guy you want next to you. But the guy with the nuclear codes at his fingertips? The leader of the free world? You might not want the guy who's gonna jump on the grenade. What the office of President requires is someone who is less committed to intractable, non-negotiable notions of personal valor and much more interested in our common welfare. To put the question in a way that will offend just about everyone: What was John McCain trying to tell us about his leadership style by highlighting the story of a man who committed suicide for his country?