Video-Philes: October 2008: Archives

October 30, 2008

The Colbert Report: The Word - I Endorse Barack Obama? genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

Stephen Colbert isn't going to be left on the outside looking in. Colbert, "angered" by the seeming rush of prominent Republicans to endorse Barack Obama, decides it may be time for him to toss his hat in with the rest of 'em.

In this segment of "The Word", Colbert provides the startling rationale for switching his endorsement to none other than Barack Obama - Stephen's not getting enough attention and he doesn't like it. There is one caveat...Colbert tells us an endorsement isn't the same as a vote.

In a puzzling afterthought, Colbert suggests that John McCain can still win this election...if he'll simply do what Stephen is doing and endorse Barack the rest of the "mavericks" in the GOP.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Colbert Report, Colin Powell, Humor, John McCain, Stephen Colbert, William Weld

Daniel DiRito | October 30, 2008 | 9:59 AM | link | Comments (0)
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October 29, 2008

Election 2008: Contrast - The Past & The Future genre: Polispeak & Video-Philes

While it's difficult to measure the meaning of any single election, there is reason to believe that the 2008 election has the potential to be a transformational one...not just in terms of political affiliations but with regards to the tenor of political discourse, the importance of the middle class, and the latent racism that has continued to percolate in the background for many years.

I've been looking for the means to depict the significance and the importance of this election is simple terms...and I think I've found two videos that achieve that goal. In the first video, we witness a few McCain supporters exposing their racial animus towards Barack Obama...blatant in some instances and cloaked in code words with others. What is clear is that race will be the deciding factor for some segment of voters in 2008.

When that happens, the real issues that should determine one's vote are ignored and rational debate and dialogue have little, if any, influence. When this exists, it provides an opportunity for those politicos who would rather win elections than advance the issues necessary to benefit the nation. Hence, the politics of division (the past)...which has been the hallmark of the GOP for a number of seemingly on trial in this election.

In the second video, "Generation WE" stakes its claim to the future. They argue that the size of the "Millennials" (those 95 million Americans born between 1978 and 2000) will make them the largest generation in this country since the "Baby Boomers"...and therefore grants them the power to remake this nation.

While it's impossible to generalize the make-up and mindset of any generation, there is reason to believe that this generation will be a counterbalancing reaction to the excesses of those that preceded them...making it more tolerant, more environmentally conscious, more engaged, and more interested in putting an end to the politics of division.

Returning to the significance of this election, one could argue that the election of Barack Obama may be their first salvo in securing their vision of the future. If they succeed in making that happen, the course of this country could be forever altered. Given the troubling tenor and tone of those who continue to cling to the past, we must not only hope that change is coming...WE must vote to bring it.

The Past - McCain Rally In Pennsylvania

The Future - Generation WE

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Bigotry, Racism, We Generation

Daniel DiRito | October 29, 2008 | 12:02 AM | link | Comments (0)
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October 27, 2008

The Onion: Cindy McCain - First Lady Or First Alien? genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

I don't have enough information to discern if Cindy McCain is as strange as she seems on the campaign trail or simply uncomfortable in such settings. Needless to say, she seems to be a rather strange duck. The Onion's recent spoof offers an even less favorable take on Mrs. McCain...suggesting she's a rather strange alien...with a hard "outer shell".

In the following video, The Onion gives us a matter of fact look at the potential first lady, inserting some rather "out there" statements. There's an image of Cindy McCain at 1:27 of the video that will leave you wondering if The Onion is offering something more than good satire and a few laughs.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Cindy McCain, Humor, Spoof, The Onion

Daniel DiRito | October 27, 2008 | 1:54 PM | link | Comments (0)
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October 25, 2008

No Child Left Behind - What About The Parents? genre: Hip-Gnosis & Polispeak & Video-Philes

While "no child left behind" is the battle cry of many Americans who worry about the state of our education system, there's more evidence that far too many parents were left behind.

Look, I realize that politics makes people emotional...but the fact that so many adults devolve into uneducated irrationality is frightening. Yes, it makes for great comedy on The Daily Show but the fact that the Republican Party has chosen to capitalize on this vulnerability and what seems to be a growing disregard of logic and reason is an unfortunate development at a time when this country needs clarity and calm.

In the following two videos, taken at a Sarah Palin rally in Henderson, Nevada, we see the degree to which some McCain supporters have been led to believe that Barack Obama is a threat to this country. The responsibility for fostering this notion rests squarely on the McCain-Palin campaign's shoulders. For every instance where John McCain corrects the misconception of a follower, he and his minions incite the same in thousands of others by resorting to the politics of fear.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure what can be done to repair the damage being done and reverse these unfounded impressions. Fomenting these views with code words and innuendo may be politically expedient for John McCain but it is clearly contrary to his assertion that he puts country first.

It's hard to imagine the benefits of educating children when they suffer the bias and prejudice of their parents on a daily basis. Promoting the politics of ignorance is simply fuel on the fire. Absent the right leadership, this nation is apt to suffer further regression. Should that happen, we'll all be left behind.

Henderson Rally - The Tame Version

Henderson Rally - The Down & Dirty

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Bias, Education, John McCain, Prejudice, Racism, Sarah Palin, Socialism

Daniel DiRito | October 25, 2008 | 1:07 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Clean Energy? John McCain Needs To Come Clean genre: Polispeak & Video-Philes

John McCain takes great offense with the accusations that he's flip flopped on a number of issues. In fact, he's been so bold as to challenge anyone to prove he has done so. His problem is that there is ample footage to prove otherwise.

In the following video, we get to see where John McCain has been on the issue of clean energy and where he now says he is in order to win votes.

John McCain tells us he puts country first but it's looking more and more like the only thing John McCain puts first is John McCain.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Clean Energy, Energy, Flip Flopping, John McCain

Daniel DiRito | October 25, 2008 | 12:46 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Wasup? Change Is Coming genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

There's a number of ways to frame elections. One of the most memorable is based upon Reagan's "Are you better off now than you were four years ago?" With that said, do you remember the "Wasup commercial for Budweiser?

Well, there's a new version for the 2008 election that's certainly worth viewing. I think it may well be the most effective campaign commercial I've seen this election cycle. Take a look at both below and let me know what you think.

Budweiser's "Wasup" Commercial

Wasup 2008 - Change

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Budweiser, Iraq, Katrina, Wasup

Daniel DiRito | October 25, 2008 | 11:43 AM | link | Comments (0)
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October 22, 2008

The Onion: A Gay Racehorse & Who Left Johnny Mac On The Bus genre: Gaylingual & Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

How about a little lighthearted fun from The Onion? In the first video, we get our first look at the issues confronting gay racehorses. Ship's Captain will be the first openly gay horse to compete in a major race. Rumor has it that Richard Simmons will make his debut as Ship's Captain's jockey...wearing sassy sequined silks and sporting a rhinestone encrusted riding crop.

In the second, we hear the harrowing tale of John McCain being left unattended on the Straight Talk Express. No doubt he had know idea which way to turn. After all, McCain the marionette struggles mightily when his handlers aren't pulling the strings. I can only imagine how frightening it must have been to have to think on his own.

Is Ship's Captain Light In The Hoofers?

Johnny Mac's Fallen & He Can't Get Off The Bus

Tagged as: Horse Racing, Humor, John McCain, LGBT, Richard Simmons, Satire, Ship's Captain, The Onion

Daniel DiRito | October 22, 2008 | 11:40 AM | link | Comments (1)
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October 21, 2008

The Daily Show: Wasilla - Home Of The Half-Baked Alaskan? genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

If the 2008 election is remembered for anything, I suspect it will be the utter disconnect between the rhetoric of the McCain campaign and the actual facts. It's as if McCain and Palin have looked at their weaknesses and decided the only plausible means to address them is to call them their strengths...while at the same time accusing their opponent of having those weaknesses they themselves been attempting to disown.

In the following video, The Daily Show travels to Wasilla, Alaska in hopes of discerning the truth about Sarah Palin's "executive" experience. Of course they can't ask the Alaska governor any questions about that since the McCain campaign won't let her conduct an interview until the media promises to play nicer.

Now I guess that's supposed to give us confidence in her competence and assure us that she is capable of assuming the presidency should that be necessary. Oh, and don't question any of this because it will undoubtedly mean that you're anti-American and filled with hatred for small town USA. If you push it too far, you might even warrant being labeled a terrorist, a socialist, or a communist.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Alaska, Humor, John Stewart, Sarah Palin, The Daily Show, Wasilla

Daniel DiRito | October 21, 2008 | 1:51 PM | link | Comments (0)
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October 15, 2008

Ask A Republican Pundit: Is McCain Erratic? genre: Polispeak & Video-Philes

If you want to get a reading on the validity of the assertion that the McCain campaign has been erratic, there's no better source than his fellow Republicans. In the following video compilation, you'll see a number of leading Republicans express their doubts about the inconsistent nature of the McCain campaign.

If hardcore GOP operatives are willing to go on the record in this manner, can you imagine what they're saying when the camera is off? Should Obama will this election, it will be interesting to hear the GOP elite's unfiltered views on the McCain candidacy.

I suspect the bickering is going to get much worse before it gets better. In the end, Karl Rove's vision of generational GOP dominance seems to have been more fantasy than fact. Something tells me the story of the GOP for the next few years will be more akin to A Nightmare On Elm Street than a feel-good saga on the order of Back To The Future.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, GOP, John McCain, Pundits. Media, Republicans

Daniel DiRito | October 15, 2008 | 12:16 PM | link | Comments (0)
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October 14, 2008

Keith Olbermann Special Comment: 10/14/08 genre: Polispeak & Six Degrees of Speculation & Video-Philes

Keith Olbermann calls John McCain out on his feigned outrage at the remarks of Congressman John Lewis. Yes, a number of pundits and politicians believe Lewis went a step too far...but then again...who knows better how narrow the line between rhetoric and violence may actually be than a man who lived through historical examples wherein that line was crossed in the blink of an eye.

John McCain and Sarah Palin can justifiably claim that they don't share any of the virulent animosity George Wallace often exhibited...however...should their tacit acceptance of outrageous outbursts at their events precipitate the violence Lewis seeks to warns against, it will be difficult for them to avoid culpability. In that potential, the comments of Congressman Lewis may well be appropriate, poignant, and prescient.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, George Wallace, John Lewis, John McCain, Keith Olbermann, Racism, Sarah Palin, Special Comment, Violence

Daniel DiRito | October 14, 2008 | 9:29 PM | link | Comments (0)
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October 9, 2008

Michelle Laxalt: A Voice Of Reason In The GOP genre: Polispeak & Video-Philes

I don't often watch Larry King, but I happened to catch a portion of his show this evening, and I'm glad I did. While discussing the 2008 election, Michelle Laxalt, daughter of former GOP Senator Paul Laxalt of Nevada, offered a candid assessment of John McCain's cynical campaign, its suspect use of Sarah Palin to spout falsities, and its willingness to incite unfounded animosities with racial overtones in the midst of a financial crisis.

Kudos to Laxalt and those Republicans who have the courage to speak out against a candidate and a campaign that has willingly engaged in the suspension of decency for political gain. I haven't a scintilla of respect for John McCain and he should be ashamed of himself.

I only hope that at the close of this election, Republicans like Laxalt will reject the politics of division and transform the GOP into a respectable and responsible party that's capable of putting country ahead of the partisan pursuit of power and profit.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, GOP, John McCain, Larry King, Michelle Laxalt, Paul Laxalt, Sarah Palin

Daniel DiRito | October 9, 2008 | 10:28 PM | link | Comments (5)
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John McCain: Seriously Out Of Touch genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

Look, anyone that thinks John McCain understands the troubles of the middle class needs a reality check. If the following video doesn't do the trick, check back soon as there's bound to be more where this came from.

Oh, just to set this up properly, keep in mind that John McCain wants you to believe Barack Obama is an elitist.

In A Sinking Economy - "A" Version

In A Sinking Economy - "B" Version

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Elitist, Humor Economy, John McCain

Daniel DiRito | October 9, 2008 | 9:14 PM | link | Comments (0)
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It's A Mad, Mad, Mad Country We Live In genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

There are times when I'm sure the United States won't survive the remaining days until we elect our next president...let alone the day after. As I watch the McCain campaign succumb to increasingly divisive acts of desperation...fomenting fear and animosity by directing innuendo at ignorance...I can't help but question the recklessness of his ambition.

If the role of leadership is to advance our society, then political appeals predicated upon a least common denominator equation are an affront to that objective. Frankly, it's difficult to blame those voters who are vulnerable to gutter politics as a result of generational prejudices, isolation from mitigating influences, and limited educational opportunities. Notwithstanding, there is great danger in inciting those who lack the tools to make objective conclusions.

Those who willfully engage in this kind of misdirection are little more than manipulative opportunists who must be exposed and rejected. Dividing this nation to advance one's ego is an admission that the advancement of the ego supersedes the enlightenment of the electorate.

To understand the risks of tactical cynicism, take a look at the following two videos. The first is the latest McCain campaign ad. The second is from a recent rally supporting the McCain-Palin ticket.

McCain Campaign Ad

McCain Campaign Rally

UPDATE: At The Entrance To A Pennsylvania McCain Rally

I think this third video amplifies my argument and points to another underlying issue. With a number of these voters, the McCain strategy is designed to allow them to unleash racist hatred under the guise of a new label. One can easily see how a term like "terrorist" is now being substituted for "n*****"...a term they realize would draw even more outrage and accusations of blatant bigotry. This cynical ploy is despicable!

While watching the second video, it's easy to feel outrage at the individuals espousing uninformed opinions. However, if one takes the time to consider the construction of their conclusions (see the first video), it's clear that they are being intentionally misled. The fact that they can creates an opening for those who would put the pursuit of power and profit first. The more fear the McCain campaign can invoke, the less likely rationality and reasonability can be restored. This is the dilemma we face.

Sadly, the fact that fear can still succeed in trumping the economic self-interest of these individuals is disheartening. In the end, those who frame this election as a battle between good and evil appear to be the ones planting the unsubstantiated seeds of the evil they callously erect in order to oppose.

The only plausible cure for this brand of politics is to deliver a crushing electoral defeat to those who have chosen this course of action. Only then will there be a deterrent to the politics of distortion and deception. Should this happen, perhaps future elections can focus on real issues of import to average Americans. For voters to be receptive to reconsideration, the cynicism of their leaders must be exposed and exterminated.

Frankly, if our increasingly dubious economic situation isn't sufficient to force us to see through these absurd distractions, it may require even more suffering for us to discern rhetoric from reality. It seems to me that some of the people we see in the above video have become so removed from rationality that unless and until Barack Obama personally hands them a loaf of bread and a bowl of soup, they'll hold fast to the fabrications they've been fed by the McCain campaign.

Unfortunately history tells us that extremist ideation is often most influential when economic turmoil prevails. It is even more ominous when some leaders choose to intentionally exacerbate it by linking the societies financial difficulties to cultural and moral considerations. In times of tumult, there is always the risk that some people in positions of power will see scapegoating as the path to power.

Two years ago, when I suggested the housing bubble fiasco would exponentially eclipse the S&L scandal, there were many who called me a partisan alarmist. Two months ago, despite repeated assurances to the contrary from those in power, the dominos began to fall in rapid succession...exactly as I'd predicted. While the toll is just beginning to be tallied, the damage has been done and it will be huge.

Today, I'm going to offer another prediction...not because I want it to materialize...but because history instructs us to do so lest we find ourselves repeating the same mistakes over and over again. This nation is on a trajectory for tragedy. In our unwillingness to face facts and find common ground, we are laying the groundwork for vilification, violence, and victimization.

When evil opportunists identify the emergence of this dynamic, they are drawn to exploit it for power and profit. Unless the forces for good intervene quickly to derail this downward spiral, we'll eventually find ourselves quantifying the coming calamity in corpses. Soon after, we'll utter the words that history tells us so often follow these days of darkness, "Never again, never again."

I hope history will conclude that my voice was one of many who sought to sound the alarm in advance. If doing so now makes me a pessimist, I'll glady accept the attachment of that label if my warning can contribute to transforming a looming tragedy into an historic high point at which the human spirit was able to choose good and extinguish an emerging evil...without the needless shedding of blood. Only then will we have fulfilled our prior promise of, "Never again, never again."

On that rather gloomy note, I'll turn to sarcasm and snark as it is often the only means to escape the unease such speculations unleash. It also offers an alternate means to expose essence. The following list is offered to illuminate the absurdity of the rhetoric being employed at recent Republican rallies.

Top ten signs you're un-American and have connections with known radicals and terrorists:

Number Ten:

Are you in the habit of purchasing Café Lattes from Starbucks? In a McCain administration, it will be assumed you supported the socialist ideology of the French revolution.

Number Nine:

Check you're children's toys; the McCain campaign is suggesting parents who purchase Chinese toys are indoctrinating them into communism.

Number Eight:

Are you attending independent foreign films? If so, it won't be advisable under a McCain presidency unless they're Canadian (but not French Canadian...only the provinces that share an "international" border with Alaska are acceptable).

Number Seven:

Better check that passport...if you've been to Venezuela, you're a Hugo Chavez sympathizer and subject to airport detention under the Super Duper Patriot Act proposed by John McCain.

Number Six:

Are you a gay man living in the Castro in San Francisco? If so, a McCain administration will view you as a subversive militant homosexual with strong ties to Cuba. How about a ticket to Guantanamo?

Number Five:

Think of yourself as Joe Six Pack? Better not be drinking German beers like Becks unless you want to be placed on the McCain-Palin list of Neo-Nazi Holocaust deniers.

Number Four:

Are you receiving your education from a prestigious east coast university? Might want to reconsider attending North Idaho College, Matanuska-Sustina College, or the University of Idaho. Sarah Palin's vice presidential platform includes rooting out those doggone un-American elites.

Number Three:

It's all about proper pronunciation...unless you drop the "G" from the end of at least one word in a sentence, the McCain campaign might think you're a freakin' for'ner.

Number Two:

Watch those middle names for male children. It's far better to choose a girl's name (Sydney's nice, eh?) than one associated with a deposed dictator. However, if you do choose a girl's name, that male child must never be allowed to visit San Francisco (see number six).

Number One:

Palin etiquette, Palin etiquette! They're pumps; not stilettos. Everyone knows a truly liberated American woman attaches a stiletto to a rifle...while wearing six-inch pumps. The moustache is optional.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, Depression, Economy, Fear, John McCain, Politics, Recession, Sarah Palin, Snark, Terrorism

Daniel DiRito | October 9, 2008 | 10:56 AM | link | Comments (0)
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October 8, 2008

Steady Hand On The Tiller Or Belligerent Burro In The Barn? genre: Polispeak & Video-Philes

During last evenings debate, John McCain took pains to suggest that he'd be a "steady hand on the tiller". If one considers the years of evidence to the contrary, one might better conclude that he's more akin to a belligerent burro in the barn...a cantankerous character whose apt to exhibit erratic behavior at inopportune moments.

In the following video, Brave New Pac provides some useful insight into John McCain's testy temperament. Frankly, if he isn't capable of controlling his anger driven outbursts during a debate, how can he be expected to be a force for calm during a crisis.

While one might concede that John McCain is an effective member of the Senate, one would likely do so with the realization that it is a highly structured deliberative body that places prudent limits upon unilateral actions. The presidency is clearly a different story.

If you need further evidence of John McCain's impulsive inclinations, allow me to suggest you read this recently published Rolling Stone biography.

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Brave New Pac, John McCain, Rolling Stone, Temperament

Daniel DiRito | October 8, 2008 | 4:22 PM | link | Comments (0)
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Donna Brazile & Sarah Palin: The Truth Is Black & White genre: Polispeak & Video-Philes

It's easy to get lost in the rampant rhetoric of elections. All too often we forget what the stakes are and just how important it is to vote. We do so at our own peril. The following two videos serve to illuminate the bright line between rhetoric and reality.

In the first video, we garner some insight into the extent of Palin's hypocrisy and her willingness to ride the political fence for advantage. While Sarah Palin is busy traveling the country attempting to portray Barack Obama's brief association with former Weatherman, Bill Ayers, as the reason to reject his election, she completely ignores her own suspect affiliations.

She wants us to believe that Barack Obama is a terrorist sympathizer because he sat in the same room with Bill Ayers and served on an education committee with him. At the same time, she completely ignores her endorsement of a man and an organization that is actively seeking the secession of the state of Alaska from the United States...a man whose hatred for his country is every bit as inflammatory as the words of Barack Obama's former pastor, Jeremiah Wright.

Now take a look at the second video and listen to the impassioned remarks of Donna Brazile as she elucidates the essence of this election absent hateful hyperbole. If Brazile's utter honesty doesn't move you, you might want to start looking for your misplaced soul. If you don't know where to look or can't be bothered, I know an abrasive Alaskan governor you might want to pal around with.

If you want to know why this elections matter, watch these videos a second time and ask yourself where the truth lies. The evidence is overwhelming. Casting a vote on election day is our opportunity to send a message that the truth still matters. If Sarah Palin wants to reject America when it's politically expedient, I think it's only appropriate we return the favor.

Given the choice, I'd much rather take a seat in the back of the bus with Donna Brazile than hitch a ride on the "Straight Talk Express" with the likes of Sarah Palin and John McCain. Come November 5th, I want it to be clear that Donna Brazile can sit anywhere she likes and I want Sarah Palin to know that her brand of rancid rhetoric has no place at the political table.

Sarah Palin's Pals

Donna Brazile

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Alaska, Barack Obama, Bill Ayers, Donna Brazile, Equality, Freedom, Joe Vogler, Racism, Sarah Palin

Daniel DiRito | October 8, 2008 | 12:28 PM | link | Comments (0)
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October 6, 2008

Keith Olbermann Special Comment On Sarah Palin - 10/06/08 genre: Polispeak & Six Degrees of Speculation & Video-Philes

Keith Olbermann wasted no time in responding to Sarah Palin's latest stump schtick. According to Palin, she's decided that it's "time to put on the heels and take off the gloves" in her efforts to sully Barack Obama. In...

Tagged as: 2008 Election, Barack Obama, John McCain, Keith Olbermann, Sarah Palin, Special Comment, Thomas Muthee

Daniel DiRito | October 6, 2008 | 7:44 PM | link | Comments (1)
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October 4, 2008

Does The Road To The White House Run Through The Late Show? genre: Polispeak & Tongue-In-Cheek & Video-Philes

When John McCain backed out of his appearance on The Late Show to rush back to Washington DC to save the country, David Letterman wasn't too happy...especially since he spotted McCain making an appearance in NYC with Katie Couric...

Tagged as: 2008 Election, David Letterman, Humor, John McCain, Sarah Palin, The Late Show

Daniel DiRito | October 4, 2008 | 9:25 AM | link | Comments (1)
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