A Series of Tubes

Remember when John McCain admitted that he’s computer “illiterate“? Now his tech guys are trying to defend the fact that their candidate isn’t familiar with the most culturally significant communications medium in our lifetimes :

Pressed again on McCain’s tech savvy, he defends his candidate.

“You don’t actually have to use a computer to understand how it shapes the country,” he says.

“You actually do,” former Edwards blogger Tracy Russo responds, suggesting he try to explain Twitter to his grandmother and then ask her how that applies to governing.

“John McCain is aware of the Internet,” says Soohoo. “This is a man who has a very long history of understanding on a range of issues.”

The fact that McCain would consider the internet one of a range of “issues” is hilariously out of touch. That’s like bragging that Richard Nixon was familiar with the television “issue” in 1960 or that FDR’s fireside chats were panders on the radio “issue”. I don’t expect John McCain to start his own blog or have a personal Facebook account, but a lack of experience with a communications medium this ubiquitous is pretty revealing. After eight years of a president with zero intellectual curiosity, I find it astonishing that we have a prospective leader who wouldn’t want to get a little hands-on time with what has amounted to a communications revolution. I know if I was alive a hundred years ago and everyone around me was gushing about this new-fangled invention called the telephone, I’d probably put down the telegraph needle and give it a shot.

In other words, the medium really is the message in this case, and John McCain doesn’t seem to be interested in either.