From The Washington Post:

Charles R. Black Jr., one of McCain’s most senior political advisers, said in an interview with Fortune magazine that a fresh terrorist attack “certainly would be a big advantage to him.” He also said that the December assassination of former Pakistani prime minister Benazir Bhutto, while “unfortunate,” helped McCain win the Republican primary by focusing attention on national security.

“His knowledge and ability to talk about it reemphasized that this is the guy who’s ready to be Commander-in-Chief. And it helped us,” Black told the magazine in its upcoming issue.

What’s with all the terror talk lately from the Rethugs? Newt Gingrich, John Bolton. and Rudy Noun Verb 9/11 Giuliani have all been flapping their lips and doing their best Chicken Little imitations. Who told them that these kind of scare tactics would work? Oh wait….now I remember…..
Original DVD cover.

The comment reinjected the fear of terrorism into the campaign as both candidates had been shifting their conversation to the economy and $4-per-gallon gasoline. It also vividly recalled the 2004 contest between President Bush and Democratic Sen. John F. Kerry, in which Republicans repeatedly questioned Kerry’s ability to protect the country from terrorists.

The comments also returned the political spotlight to McCain’s advisers and, in particular, to Black, who has drawn criticism for his long lobbying career and his representation of controversial foreign governments.


Black earlier this year severed ties to the lobbying firm he founded. Records show that his firm had represented the Pakistan People’s Party, which Bhutto led until her death.

Asked about the comments by reporters while campaigning in California, McCain said: “I cannot imagine why he would say it. It’s not true. I’ve worked tirelessly since 9/11 to prevent another attack on the United States of America. My record is very clear.”


In a strongly worded statement issued yesterday afternoon, the campaign of presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama called Black’s comments a “complete disgrace.”

“The fact that John McCain’s top adviser says that a terrorist attack on American soil would be a ‘big advantage’ for their political campaign is a complete disgrace, and is exactly the kind of politics that needs to change,” spokesman Bill Burton said.


Traveling with McCain, Black faced reporters in California to acknowledge his mistake. “I deeply regret the comments.

Here’s a little history on Charlie Black, from The Nation via Yahoo News:

Black has a long history of rough-and-tumble politics, on behalf of some of the most controversial figures in this country and abroad.

Black was a protege of the late GOP operative Lee Atwater, who coldly implemented the Republican Party’s racially divisive “Southern strategy.” Both Atwater and Black were longtime advisors to former North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms.


When he wasn’t working on GOP political campaigns, Black was a leader of what the Center for Public Integrity termed “The Torturers Lobby.” As a lobbyist for Black, Manafort, Stone & Kelly, Black represented the likes of Mobutu Sese Seko in Zaire, Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines and Jonas Savimbi of Angola.

In 1992, as Ken Silverstein of Harper’s recently noted, Spy magazine ran a profile of Black’s lobbying firm. “Spy reviewed the operations of a number of top beltway lobbying firms and ranked Black, Manafort as the ‘sleaziest’ of the firms it surveyed, giving it a ‘blood-on-the-hands’ rating of four,” Silverstein writes. “That was a full bloody hand more than the rating accorded to lobbyist Edward van Kloberg, whose clients included Saddam Hussein and Nicolae Ceausescu of Romania.”

More recently, as the chairman of BKSH & Associates (a subsidiary of Mark Penn’s firm Burson-Marsteller), Black flacked for disgraced Iraqi exile Ahmad Chalabi and the Lock, the shadowy PR firm that covertly placed US military propaganda in Iraqi news outlets.


Since 1999, BKSH earned over $4 million in lobbyist fees on behalf of 11 Iraq war defense contractors, including Lockheed Martin and United Technologies. As recently as February, Black was conducted his lobbying work from aboard McCain’s campaign bus, the “Straight Talk Express.”

On a lighter note, if you are in the mood to read a little about another kind of ghost, check out my post over at American Street!


Filed under 2008 election, 9/11, Barack Obama, Chimpy, George W. Bush, humor, Iraq War, John Bolton, John Kerry, John McCain, Karl Rove, movies, Newt Gingrich, Pakistan, parody, politics, Racism, Republicans, Rudy Giuliani, September 11, snark, Wordpress Political Blogs

26 responses to “Boo!

  1. jeb

    What irritates me about this whole mess is all of the coverage where all of the pundits agree that the Rethugs (and McBush) have a lock on national security. WHO SAYS?! There stock response is to either make nice with some sleazebag or to hitch up there pants and talk tough.

    I cannot believe that the majority of Americans are ready to concede that Rethugs will keep us safe. They haven’t so far. Baghdad anyone?

  2. jeb,
    exactly! not only in national security, but did the rethugs keep people safe from bridges collapsing or levees breeching. will they save us from starvation when the gas prices get so high that food is no longer affordable? how about the mortgage crisis? how many homeless people will we have? there are many forms of terrorism. some are more dramatic than others, but the gradual creep of economic disaster is just as scary as the unexpected physical attack.

  3. Got a Grip

    BushCo and the Captain Underpants crowd are far more likely to commit acts of terrorism than to spare us or save us from any. Especially if there’s a few bucks involved that they might be able to get their grubby paws on.

  4. gotta!!
    where have you been?

  5. Got a Grip

    Sorry to worry you, nons. I’ve been having the root canal from hell. Remember when I went in two weeks ago and had the root canal? And then it developed an infection and there was a piece that was cutting my tongue and that all had to heal? Well, it kept on hurting even after fixing the sharp thingie and removing the infection. It felt like there were still nerves in there and someone was jabbing them with a hot poker. So my dentist took out all of the temporary filling and dug around in there looking for extra roots. That means almost no pain stuff because you need to feel the badness to know if they’re getting close. So there was a clear indicator that there was an extra nerve in there when the dentist hit it with the drill. It’s been a fun couple of weeks for my mouth.

    The dentist said that she had heard tell of strange tales of people with extra nerves in their teeth, but that it was so rare that she’d never actually seen one. She put another temp filling in there to see if that was it or if there’s more to be found. I think there might be another one, but everything is still so tender right now that I can’t be sure. I’ve been in oral hell. Yesterday was a haze of Vicodin and Darvacet. Good times.

    To make a long story even longer, I haven’t felt like even typing a comment. Somehow it feels too much like talking, which makes me feel sort of ill to think about. What I need here is a button I can press that lets you know that I’ve been here and approved of the material. A rec button, if you will. It’s an idea whose time has come….. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  6. nightowl724

    I know that I, for one, am scared – scared of the Republican Party!

    Cool cover, nonnie. McCain as a worm… fits. Rove as having (unfortunately) returned from the dead… fits. I dream of Blackie with the long black hair… fits. Bush as a mummy calling for his Mummy… fits!

  7. gotta!
    yikes! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ i knew that you were okay (in a general sense, as in, still alive and kicking), because i knew you were part of the diary rescues within the last couple of days, and i saw that you had left a comment at dk the other day.
    i have always thought you were a bit nervy, so i wish your dentist had called me. i would have told her to look for an extra nerve or 2.
    i hope everything heals soon and correctly. i hate, hate, hate, hate, hate, hate dentists. ๐Ÿ˜ˆ

  8. glad you like the poster, nightowl. it is actually the second one i made. in the first, i made casper’s hands and chest pinker to match rove’s coloring more. however, when i got done, i realized that karl didn’t look ghostly at all, more like a big ugly pink naked baby. it was still a fun poster to make. the funniest thing to me is how much a ghoulized charlie black (and, by the way, it doens’t take much to ghoulize him) looks like poppy bush.

  9. jlms qkw - jenn

    oh gotta dear! i am soooooooo sorry!

    nonnie, mccain makes the perfect worm. totally. a continuing meme, perhaps?

    karl is like dudley dursley – when hagrid’s pig spell failed ’cause he was too much of a pig already ๐Ÿ˜‰

  10. capt underpants does look quite natural as a worm, doesn’t he? i am not conversant in all things harry potter, but i will take your word for it that karl is like dudley dursley. the name fits him quite well. i have always thought that his name should be dudley or maybe poindexter.

  11. jlms qkw - jenn

    i think poindexter was already taken?

    the reason the spell failed was because dudley was so much like a pig already, so hagrid’s spell only gave him a curly tail.

  12. it would be sort of like giving karl horns and a tail. just adornments.

  13. nightowl724

    Oh, gotta… I feel so bad for you…

  14. Its a true statement. he didnt say he wanted it, he just said what he thought. I guess we cant say that anymore.

  15. ben k,
    even if what he said was true, this is politics, and the way you say things matters. he could have made the point without sounding like he was hoping for a disaster. while it might be a fact that you will inherit a great deal of money when your grandparents die, you don’t walk around saying that you will be filthy rich when the old farts kick the bucket.

  16. jeb

    Ben K, I disagree that what he said is true. How is it true? Are we absolutely certain that McCain will be better on “protecting” us from terrorist or on national security? Why because he is a vet? John Kerry was a combat vet an yet Roveco convinced that Bush’s experience in the Texas Air National Guard (when he was there) was much more valid than Kerry’s. Is it because he’s a Republican? What foreign policy wonders have they worked? Yes they went in to Afghanistan after the Taliban after 9/11 but then what? Pulled troops out to start a needless war elsewhere? A strategy McCain backs!

    I hope that Obama and his campaign put paid to this myth that somehow we can all sleep safer with a Republican in charge. I know that I don’t.

  17. jeb

    Gotta, you’ve got some nerve! Sorry, I always wanted to say that.

    I had my wisdom teeth out when I was 21. They were both impacted. One came out OK but after six shots on that side I was still feeling it. The dentist finally told me to tough it out.

  18. jeb,
    i also don’t understand how being a pow for 5 years somehow makes you an expert in national security. how did the myth get started that rethugs are so great at protecting us? the msm perpetuates this fantasy, and the dems seem to be too polite to tell them that it’s just bs.

  19. jeb

    Nonnie, it comes from Reagan and the end of the Iranian hostage crisis. CONS have convinced people that the Iranians released the hostages because Reagan was so tough that they were quaking in their boots. That is – of course – a complete and utter lie. By the time Raygun took office, even the Iranians were tired of the whole ordeal. Many of the original hostage takers had left because of how it had dragged on. The eventual release of the hostages was a direct result of the negotiations by the Carter administration. (and yes there were a lot of mistakes made by Carter and his administration in the handling of the issue). As one last act against Carter, the Iranians held off on the release so that he wouldn’t be able to claim credit for it. That allowed Raygun and his pals to claim credit and claim that it was a direct result of the exta-strong red, white and blue testosterone that is the exclusive domain of Repugs.

    It’s complete and utter BS.

  20. oh yeah! and saint ronnie was also the sole reason mr. gorbachev tore down that wall! it had never occurred to gorbie to do so until st. ronnie said to do it. then gorbie smacked himself on the forehead, said d’ohhhhh, and then declared that all the munchkins…..i mean russians were free!

  21. how does being a “war hero” (which i say with such the grain of salt) make you a expert on terrorism and foreign policy

    because idiots like Chris Matthews says it does — they just have to keep repeating the Goebbels big lie and poof – it is true.

    same with giuliani — i guess walking around in the ashes of a collapsed building makes one an expert on terrorism

    this people….

  22. silly dcAp!
    don’t you understand? it’s just like buying a so-called ranch, clearing a little brush when the cameras are rolling, and calling yourself a cowboy! it becomes true when they have made themselves believe it is true and when tweety gets a tingle down his leg.

  23. jeb

    Nonnie, are telling us that it’s not true just because they say it is?

  24. jeb,
    that’s usually a very good indicator.

  25. nonnie-

    the msm perpetuates this fantasy, and the dems seem to be too polite to tell them that itโ€™s just bs.

    Not quite. Hillary, inexplicably, gave this ridiculous notion credence last year. I’ve never understood it. In my travels through the rightosphere, the lone defense that they’re left with is the “no attacks since 9/11” line, so I’m not sure how a new attack is supposed to be an advantage to them. If anything, one would think that it would validate what Obama’s been saying, that the Iraq war hasn’t made us safer and that the “fight them over there’ and “follow us home” rhetoric was the BS we always said it was.

    Anyway, I’ve discussed this over on my blog a few times. Logically, the notion really shouldn’t be true. I guess that Black’s thinking is that an attack would bring back the fear and Americans would instinctually flock to the warriors. But after what Bush has done, I’m not sure that most people would fall for it. I mean, what would people expect McCain to do different than Obama in the situation? Invade another country that had nothing to do with it?

  26. hey cz! ๐Ÿ˜€
    in fairness to hillary, she said:

    It’s a horrible prospect to ask yourself, ‘What if? What if?’ But if certain things happen between now and the election, particularly with respect to terrorism, that will automatically give the Republicans an advantage again, no matter how badly they have mishandled it, no matter how much more dangerous they have made the world

    she more or less said it’s bs, but that is the perception, and, because of the crap job the msm has been doing, it’s the truth. i honestly don’t think it will matter though. i went to the doctor and to the bank today. in both places, people were complaining about the gas prices, and, in both places, they said it was chimpy’s and the rethug’s fault. yes, i live in liberal broward county in floriduhhhhh, but these were all senior citizens, and they are more conservative than those younger than them. people are so pissed off about gas and food and levees breeching and bridges collapsing that, even if there is another terror attack (g-d forbid), they will put the blame for that squarely where it belongs–on chimpy and the rethugs.