Marshall calls it 'the biggest 'dog ate my homework' in history." I do think there's something to that--McCain's debate-delaying move seems more than a bit immature and self-indulgent. (As a kid, didn't you used to think, 'Gee, if there was a huge disaster I wouldn't have to take that test'?') ... 11:44 P.M.
I'd missed George McGovern coming out against "card check." ... Meanwhile, Eduwonk makes a not-completely-clear argument that "card check" might help school reform--apparently by expanding private sector unions (i.e., SEIU) and diluting the influence of public sector teachers 'unions within the labor movement. There's also some woolly language about how workers in "hard hat" unions are logical allies of reform because "[i]t's their kids ...who are stuck in lousy schools." True, but they're stuck in lousy schools whether their parents are unionized or not--and unionizing them seems more likely to force them to support their brother teachers' locals than it is to force the teachers' unions to give up their demands for seniority hiring, barriers to dismissal, etc. (which are, after all, traditional union demands). It seems easier just to beat "card check" and beat the teachers' unions, with the "hard hat" parents exercising their power as parents. ... I think Eduwonk is being political here--looking desperately and somewhat naively for potential school reform allies in the Democratic party power and money structure. ... 10:30 P.M. link
Timing Is Everything! ... Second Prize: Dinner! ... Write Your Own Hed! Tom Daschle invites John Kerry, Richard Holbrooke, and James Carville to breakfast with former Fannie Mae CEO (and ex- Obama-veep-vetter) Jim Johnson. Hard to see how they can pass that one up. .. Premature Comeback Syndrome: Shouldn't Johnson go have breakfast with John Edwards, wherever he is, is until, say, December? ... [Via NewsAlert] 7:15 P.M. link
Drama Queen: No convention today! ... OK, it's on! ... The economy's sound... No, wait, it's going to fall apart unless I go to Washington tomorrow! ... We need a commission! ... We need to fire somebody! ... Get me Andrew Cuomo! ... I want ten more debates! ... But let's postpone the one we've scheduled! ... Do you get the impression a McCain presidency would be a bit exhausting? ...
P.S.: Remember Tom Wolfe's description of a fighter pilot's decision-making protocol: "I've tried A! I've tried B! I've tried C! ..." Update:Delmarva Now's J. Fisher has posted the Wolfe quote in full. It's eerily resonant! ...
P.P.S.: Why does McCain think he is the person who can whip conservative House Republicans into line behind the bailout? Just like he did with "comprehensive immigration reform." ... But wait, that suggests a possible deal conservative House Republicans might strike: Senator, you say there will be "devastating consequences" to our country if we don't pass this bailout bill. So devastating that you've halted your campaign and want to postpone a crucial debate. Are they so devastating that you're willing to postpone your own controversial immigration reform until, say, after the 2010 elections? ... I think they'll discover there are some things McCain won't sacrifice for his country. ... 5:29 P.M. link
Item Status Notification (Delay): I was going to write an item making another argument for Obama: That we shouldn't worry about him getting rid of the secret ballot when it comes to recognizing unions because, according to no less an authority than Dem labor expert William Gould, Obama would need a filibuster-proof 60 vote majority in the Senate to make that change--and a 60 seat majority is out of reach. Planned headline: "Vote Obama: He Won't Get It Done!"