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Oct 11, 2008

McCain's Mouth

Mccain Iowa-1

This particular guy caught the attention of several newswire photographers today.  He was in the front row during McCain's Iowa appearance waving a hat which matched his shirt.  This shot -- since replaced -- accompanied a NYT article detailing GOP anxiety over McCain's increasingly chaotic campaign.

Still reverberating into the weekend, it seems McCain and his crew didn't appreciate the pot they've been stirring in working up their crowds.

In framing this scene, NYT photographer Stephen Crowley offers some brilliant commentary.  The singular open mouth is a chilling reference to, and warning of the faceless angry mob.  The X'ing out of Obama is more terrifying still.  If few dare talk about it, the logical conclusion of all the vilifying -- justified in the name of "Country First" -- is to put Obama in the cross hairs.  The inclusion of man at the left, however, and the sidelong, circumspect glance in the direction of "Mouth" is a reminder that people at these rallies mostly know better, and understand there are boundaries one just doesn't cross.

Problem is, you need a candidate who 100% knows the difference, who you can clearly say skews to the guy on the left as opposed to bouncing back-and-forth.

John McCain: I Am an Arab and a Decent Man (Zogby/HuffPost)

(image: Stephen Crowley/The New York Times.  Davenport, Iowa.  October 11, 2008)


Sometimes you can smell a picture - I'm smelly ciggy smoke here. I think it's the shirt's yellow-brown stripes that look like they should be - or might once have been - white. Is it a desecration of the flag to stain it with nicotine?

Reference: Gone with the Wind. Setting. I showed it as part of English in China. I showed the movie in English with English subtitles. When the Chinese students watching had questions we stopped the movie and talked about it. Seeing the Mouthman makes me think he in the same situation as the slave Big Tom and Tara's other field hands marching out of Atlanta. They are digging trenches for the Confederacy. In other words assisting their enslavers. But that's common for whites in the United States when their white identity is targetted by the rich.

Skrik, Evard Munch, 1893.

I must say the badge/ campaign sticker affixed to this pained gentleman's flag shirt is a nifty bit of design. Incredibly busy with several fonts and messages and two candidate pictures but somehow it fits together pretty well. Still, it is harder to decode than it needs to be since the message is clearly "I'm ag'in' Obama".

Many primates open their mouths and show their teeth when they want to display aggression and dominance.

Enough said.

Many primates open their mouths and show their teeth when they want to display aggression and dominance.

Enough said.

the funny thing about the badge he's wearing is that, without the cross-out, Obama's face dominates the graphic - it's bigger and more to the fore than McCain's.

Is the cross printed on the badge, or did this fellow add it?

If the Obama face was printed with the cross-out, it's interesting, because the message is - going negative about Obama is more important than McCain, whose image is in retreat. Why would McCain's graphic designers do that?

This and your Todd posts need wide circulation. Thanks for all you are doing.

What does it say above Obama's picture?

Don't be ??? ????

Looks like he coloured it brown, just so there's no confusion.

Good luck in November.

"Don't be taken or mistaken". Is that what it says?

Primates also open their mouths when they're shouting, and this one's amazingly dingy shirt doesn't seem to be reflected by his teeth which don't seem hideously yellow.

As for the "X": to me that shows simple rejection, and doesn't bring to mind cross-hairs at all. Still, it looks to me as though it was a McCain-campaign prepared label (and an ill-designed one at that - McCain looking pale and small), and while it's best the media doesn't talk about it, the Republican rhetoric of late is probably adding work to a very busy Secret Service.

The Flag Code states that the flag should never be worn. (Section 8d): "The flag should never be used as wearing apparel."

But then, republicans are too busy telling others what they should do to bother doing the right thing themselves.

For some reason, I had a visceral reaction to this particular primate. He represents the ugly America that screams at anything new and uplifting. He's the one who screamed at Hillary to iron his shirts. He's McCain calling his wife a c***. He's Limbaugh calling Pelosi a ball-breaker. He's the big ugly male threat women have learned to stay away from. I guess you could say ugly is as ugly does. This is ugly!

Just a few months ago, at the onset of this campaign, Bridget, now 16, summoned Mr. McCain’s aides and asked them to explain in detail what had happened in South Carolina, and to give assurances that it would not happen again.

Mrs. McCain was also unsure about another run. The ultimate decision was in her hands, she said, and she was deeply influenced by the feelings of Bridget, who only learned about the events of 2000 when she Googled herself last year.

Bridget McCain’. . . has no Wiki.

How subtle is this poster waved at a McCain rally today,


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