And I blame the Republican base. McCain has had to give up so much of those things which made him a candidate for the Presidency (his ability to work across partisan lines, his less dogmatic approach than Dubya, etc.) just to please the more right wing, anti-libertarian wing of his party.
His choice of Vice Presidential candidate only furthers his tickets distance from the centre. And the centre is where this election will be won... sometimes political bloggers on both sides get caught up in the rhetoric and forget that ordinary Americans are the ones who will make the choice. Dubya got through by the skin of his teeth against relatively weak Democratic candidates. McCain is up against a strong contender... he cannot afford to copy Dubya's tactics.
Well, I hear you say, by choosing a female outsider as his running matter surely he has regained some of his "maverick" charm, and separated himself from Dubya. Not exactly. She is an arch conservative, hardly a revelation on a post Reagan Republican Presidential ticket. Some conservative US blogs are crying with joy at the selection stating that this "progressive" appointment has the Democrats on the run. Bless them, they seem to think just putting a woman on a ticket will be enough to make progressive thinkers fall at their feet. Wrong, that kind of defeats the whole concept of progressiveness... progressive thought should see beyond gender, race, etc. and focus only on the character and policies of the candidates. And on that basis, this appointment makes me firmly believe that Obama/Biden is the ticket to win right now.