Barn Doors


BARN DOORS….Via TPM, Mark Halperin said this morning that Barack Obama was foolish to bring up the issue of John McCain’s seven house because it “opens the door” for McCain to air inflammatory ads about Jeremiah Wright, Tony Rezko, Bill Ayers, and other dark chapters from Obama’s past. It opens, to coin a phrase, the gates of hell.

But wait, you’re thinking: wasn’t all this stuff going to come up anyway? Turns out George Stephanopoulos asked precisely that:

Stephanopoulos: Don’t you think that was going to come up anyway?

Halperin: I think it would have been hard for John McCain, given the way he says he’s going to run his campaign, to do all this stuff without the door being opened.

It really does make you wonder what planet Halperin is living on. Last month McCain hired Karl Rove protege Steve Schmidt, and since then he’s run ads mocking Obama’s celebrity, charged (repeatedly) that Obama puts his career ahead of his country, pretended that Obama had refused to visit wounded soldiers unless the press was along, run an ad saying that Obama was responsible for high gas prices, and conspicuously declined to comment on Jerome Corsi’s bestselling claim that Obama is really a secret Muslim. At this point, who cares how McCain “says he’s going to run his campaign”? Halperin can look at McCain’s actual campaign and see what kind of campaign he’s running. It’s been sunk in the gutter for weeks now.

Anyway, as Halperin is certainly well aware, McCain and his cheering section are beavering away on all this stuff anyway. Over at National Review, for example Stanley Kurtz has been hard at work badgering the University of Illinois to give him access to the archives of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. Why? Because his heart is turning somersaults over the possibility that something in the archives will show that Obama had a conversation or three with radical leftist Bill Ayers during the period when both served on the board of CAC in the mid-90s. Do you think Kurtz was waiting for a “door to be opened”? Or Jerome Corsi? Or Steve Schmidt? Please.

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.