The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

8,000,000: Fear and Loathing on Vegas Debate Media Credential Deadline Day

Posted on | October 11, 2011 | 30 Comments

Later today we will record our 8 millionth visitor to the blog. We got our first 3.3 million at the old Blogspot site (March 2008-December 2009) and, since switching to the custom domain with WordPress software in January 2010, have added another 4.7 million visits.

We recently recorded our best month to date with 339,343 visits in July so — assuming we can keep this up, and the Blog Gods of the Cargo Cult do not become offended again — it’s possible to estimate that we could reach the cumulative total of 10 million visits sometime in April or May.

This evidence of reader loyalty comes at a most convenient time, considering that today is the deadline to submit media credential requests for next Tuesday’s CNN/Western Republican Leadership Conference presidential debate in Las Vegas.

Submitting such requests is a hassle, as I’ve always loathed filling out applications. However, I’m sure my request will be approved, as I had no problem getting credentials from CNN for the Sept. 12 Tampa debate. But whereas I was credentialed as a correspondent for The American Spectator, I’m a bit nervous about how the public-relations office at CNN will respond when Smitty and Wombat apply for credentials to cover the Vegas debate for

The request form asks for a “title” and the name of a “supervisor.” We haven’t exactly been formal in the matter of titles, and I do damned little that could be called “supervising.”

So I was sweating the credentials thing for Smitty and Wombat when I noticed we were approaching the 8-million mark and thought, “Wait a minute! Eight million readers since March 2008? That’s a crapload of readers. Surely, the folks at CNN can’t deny media credentials for these valuable contributors to a site with such a vast worldwide readership.”

Our flights to Vegas are already booked. I’ll arrive the evening of the 17th to cover the crucial pre-debate events (i.e., booze, gambling, showgirls, Wayne Newton, etc.), while Smitty and Wombat arrive on the 18th. We’ll report to the Press Filing Center in Hall G of the Sands Expo and Convention Center, where check-in begins at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

My two blog colleagues must have those credentials, you see, in order for us to provide complete coverage of this critical debate involving seven Republican presidential candidates as well as Jon Huntsman. (Let’s be honest: Huntsman is an Obama administration Trojan Horse. Once the primaries are over, Huntsman will then declare himself an independent and launch a centrist third-party campaign, claiming that the nomination of “that dangerous right-wing extremist, Mitt Romney” proves that the Republican Party has been taken over by fringe kook types. And all the MSM will give live primetime coverage to the announcement speech where Huntsman declares, “America is ready for a new direction — namely me!” Huntsman will then introduce his running mate, Charlie Crist, whose job will be to attract just enough RINO votes to throw Florida to Obama. But I digress …)

See there? That’s the kind of lunatic gibberish that might cause trouble with Jennifer and Megan, the CNN public-relations department people whose job it is to handle media credential requests for the Vegas debate. You can imagine Jennifer and Megan picking up the applications from Smitty and Wombat, checking online to make sure is a Legitimate Political News Operation, and then seeing me rant on with a bunch of paranoid speculation about Huntsman being used as a sort of sock-puppet candidate, taking his orders from Axelrod and Plouffe. “Request denied!”

Will Wayne Newton Vouch for Me?

Big trouble could ensue if we arrive next Tuesday and they try to deny Smitty and Wombat access to the Press Filing Center at the Sands. By the 10 a.m. check-in time, I’m liable to be badly jangled, after a cross-country flight with a four-hour layover in LAX, then partying until 3 a.m. with Wayne Newton and Barbara Espinosa. (Barbara’s already been approved for her credentials.) Allowing maybe three hours of sleep before my 8:30 a.m. wake-up call, I’ll be on my fifth cup of coffee by the time we approach the media check-in table at the Press Filing Center. Bloodshot eyes, sweating like a pimp in church, I’ll be in no condition to offer calm explanations if they try to hassle us.

“McCain, from the American Spectator, and these guys are my … well, not exactly ’employees,’ because they don’t get paid, but they work on my, uh, blog.”

“Blog?” the girl at the check-in table will say, with just enough sarcasm in her voice to set me off.

“DON’T YOU KNOW WHO I AM? Ask anybody about me! OK, wait — maybe not ‘anybody,’ because Erickson probably won’t be in much of a mood to vouch for my legitimacy as a journalist. But that’s no reason to take it out on my loyal colleagues here. For crying out loud, Smitty just got back from a tour of duty in Afghanistan! And Wombat here — yeah, I know it doesn’t say ‘Wombat’ on the credential request, but that’s what we call him — Wombat compiles the vital ‘Live at Five’ morning news digest, to say nothing of the FMJRA and Rule 5 Sunday. But I guess if you don’t know about the blog, you never heard of Rule 5 so …”

“Sir, calm down,” the check-in girl will say, which is when I’ll notice the security guard eyeing me suspiciously and muttering something into his walkie-talkie.

“Calm? OK, I’m calm. But these two men are essential to this journalistic endeavor. Our readers are counting on us and the way you said ‘blog’ …”

“Which blog?” she’ll ask.

“What? What do you mean?”

“What’s the name of your blog?”

“Oh —”

“Right here,” she’ll say, pulling the credentials for Smitty and Wombat from her file box, attaching the glossy cards to lanyards. “And here are your media information packets, gentlemen. You’ll be seated in the Online Media section and if there’s anything you need, just ask.”

Smitty and Wombat will say “thanks” and head on into Hall G, leaving me there at the check-in table.

“Wow, that was easier than I thought,” I’ll tell the girl. “Now, just let me get my credentials — McCain, from the American Spectator.”

“I meant to mention that to you earlier. You see, Mr. Erickson warned us you might be coming …”

* * * * * *

Don’t laugh. That could really happen. Politics is a nasty business and you never know who might be plotting revenge. The Rick Perry machine wouldn’t hesitate to kneecap me if they ever got a chance. So even though I’ll add this to the “humor” category, it won’t be too funny if I end up getting tased and pepper-sprayed by a half-dozen security guards, then hauled off to the Clark County jail on charges of disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and who knows what else. (Is the Clark County Sheriff a Republican? Has he endorsed Perry? Is there, even now, a picture of me tacked up on the bulletin board at the sheriff’s office? “Warning: Fugitive at Large. Armed and Dangerous. Shoot On Sight.” )

Final Wisdom, After 1,200 Words

Of course, the overwhelming likelihood is that we won’t have any hassle in Vegas. It would be foolish of Erickson or anyone else to send a bunch of security goons to stomp me in the parking lot of the Sands Expo and Convention Center, stuff me in the trunk of a car and leave me to die somewhere in the Nevada desert. People would notice my disappearance and, even though the Perry campaign appears hopelessly doomed at this point — with nothing to lose from bumping off a hostile journalist — they probably won’t risk that kind of scandal.

Entertaining as these rambling speculations might be, the point I was trying to make when I started this post 1,200 words ago was that our journey to Las Vegas — Smitty, Wombat and me — will be an apt celebration of our success in reaching the 8-million visit milestone. If we can get Jennifer and Megan to approve those media credential requests, there will be three of us on the scene to cover the Vegas debate. I’ll actually have a chance to be a “supervisor” (hey, that’s what it says on the application) and our coverage should be pretty spiffy. Then, once I get through filing my column for The American Spectator, we’ll all head out for a night on the town.

Your readership is essential to our value as a Legitimate Political News Operation and, of course, your contributions to the Shoe Leather Fund are essential to us being able to afford this kind of trip, to say nothing of the usual reasons I rattle the tip jar. And just in case some of our new readers are visually impaired, click the image below:

This Vegas trip will be fun and, honestly, expect some great reporting. Just as long as I can avoid getting stomped in the parking lot . . .

UPDATE: Thanks to Bob Belvedere of the Camp of the Saints for the “gonzo” me.



30 Responses to “8,000,000: Fear and Loathing on Vegas Debate Media Credential Deadline Day”

  1. Mike
    October 11th, 2011 @ 4:38 pm

    Perhaps I was number 8,000,000. Good luck in Vegas

  2. Anonymous
    October 11th, 2011 @ 4:38 pm

    I got your back, chief. ūüėČ

  3. Joe
    October 11th, 2011 @ 4:40 pm

    Why stop with Smitty and Wombat?  Why not get a whole TOM entourage to show up at these things.  Sort of like Howard Stern,

  4. PhilipJames
    October 11th, 2011 @ 4:40 pm

    Sarah Palin – Defending the Republic –

  5. Joe
    October 11th, 2011 @ 4:55 pm

    Wombat, will Stacy have you out  spotting for the roulette wheels is a lot of reds or blacks in a row? 

  6. Bob Belvedere
    October 11th, 2011 @ 5:17 pm

    Godspeed, lads!

    Stacy: You’re more than welcome to use this pic in the future¬†if you want to:

  7. Anonymous
    October 11th, 2011 @ 5:33 pm

    I’ll be too busy trying to spot Perrybots and other RedState-addled thugs.

  8. DaveO
    October 11th, 2011 @ 5:58 pm

    But will you be taking pics of the wimmin for Rule 5: The Debate Edition?

  9. Richard Mcenroe
    October 11th, 2011 @ 6:11 pm

    Well, I’ve got the scary loud Hawiian shirt and jazzy snap-brim…

  10. Anonymous
    October 11th, 2011 @ 6:18 pm

    Well, I’ve got the scary loud Hawiian shirt and jazzy snap-brim…¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†

    Exactly. What’s the drive time from LA to Vegas? Can you rent a Chevy convertible for the trip? Do you have a Samoan attorney on retainer?

    Advance planning will be necessary, and you’ve got five or six days to make it happen. But I have confidence in you, McEnroe.

  11. ThePaganTemple
    October 11th, 2011 @ 6:21 pm

    Its easy to spot a Perrybot. He has his head stuck so far up his ass he can’t smell shit.

  12. smitty
    October 11th, 2011 @ 6:26 pm

    You do realize you’re more than welcome.

  13. Dianna Deeley
    October 11th, 2011 @ 6:33 pm

    You’re a hostile journalist?! Never!

    BTW, check your tip jar!

  14. Dianna Deeley
    October 11th, 2011 @ 6:39 pm

    You left out the rather endless supply of …. substances.¬†

  15. smitty
    October 11th, 2011 @ 7:23 pm

    I trust we’re not dressing as idiots for the debate, but will Hawaiian shirts be a uniform item for later, with the fedoras?

  16. Bob Belvedere
    October 11th, 2011 @ 7:39 pm

    I wish I could go.  Hell, I would have given you guys use of our condo out there, but we finally have it rented for four months.

    Remember me to Crapsville.

  17. Anonymous
    October 11th, 2011 @ 7:47 pm

    And to think somebody once said there no one more irresponsible than a man in the midst of an ether binge.
    Trust the tire gage.

  18. Richard Mcenroe
    October 11th, 2011 @ 7:55 pm

    He also left out the bar tab. ¬†That’s the part that scares me back into honest employment.

    I’ll grab a couple of lottery tickets and see what I can do.

  19. Herman Cain: 'Obama's Never Been A Part Of The Black Experience In America' - The POH Diaries
    October 11th, 2011 @ 8:51 pm

    […] Herman Cain: ‘Obama’s Never Been A Part Of The Black Experience In America’ On October 11, 2011, in 2012, Barack Obama, Herman Cain, by TWB // .nrelate_flyout {display:block; right: -400px; bottom: 0px; width:360px;} #nrelate_flyout_open{display:block; right: -80px;bottom: 0px;} #nrelate_flyout_close{background: #fff url( no-repeat 0 0} // 0) { begin = document.cookie.indexOf(NameOfCookie+"="); if (begin != -1) { begin += NameOfCookie.length+1; end = document.cookie.indexOf(";", begin); if (end == -1) end = document.cookie.length; return unescape(document.cookie.substring(begin, end)); } } return "false"; } function nr_fo_set_closed_cookie(value,domain) { var NameOfCookie="nr_fo_closed"; var ExpireDate = new Date (); // Expiration date set to 2 hours. Must give at least 2 hours until view gets incremented for this url per user. ExpireDate.setTime(ExpireDate.getTime() + (7*24*60*60*1000)); document.cookie = NameOfCookie + "=" + value + "; expires=" + ExpireDate.toGMTString()+"; path=/" + "; domain="+domain ; } value=nr_fo_get_closed_cookie(); if(value=="false") nr_fo_closed=false; else nr_fo_closed=true; var nr_fo_hidden = true; jQuery(function($){$(window).scroll(function() {var lastScreen;lastScreen = getScrollY() + $(window).height() < ($("#nr_fo_bot_of_post").offset().top) – ($("#nr_fo_top_of_post").offset().top) ? false : true;if (lastScreen && !nr_fo_closed && getScrollY()!=0 && nRelate.flyout_show) {$(".nrelate_flyout").stop().animate({"right":"0px"});nr_fo_hidden = false}else if (nr_fo_closed && lastScreen && getScrollY()!=0 && nRelate.flyout_show) {$("#nrelate_flyout_open").stop().animate({"right":"0px"});nr_fo_hidden=false;}else if (!nr_fo_hidden && !nr_fo_closed) {$(".nrelate_flyout").stop().animate({"right":"-400px"});nr_fo_hidden = true;}else if (!nr_fo_hidden && nr_fo_closed) {$("#nrelate_flyout_open").stop().animate({"right":"-80px"});nr_fo_hidden = true;}});$("#nrelate_flyout_close").live("click",function() { $(".nrelate_flyout").stop().animate({"right":"-400px"}); $("#nrelate_flyout_open").stop().animate({"right":"0px"}); nr_fo_closed = true; nr_fo_hidden = false; nr_fo_set_closed_cookie(true,"");});$("#nrelate_flyout_open").live("click",function() { $("#nrelate_flyout_open").stop().animate({"right":"-80px"}); $(".nrelate_flyout").stop().animate({"right":"0px"});nr_fo_closed = false; nr_fo_hidden = false; nr_fo_set_closed_cookie(false,"");});}); var entity_decoded_nr_url = jQuery('').html(";).text(); nRelate.getNrelatePosts(entity_decoded_nr_url); //]]> Tweet As I stated before, I’m really starting to like Herman Cain. There are many reasons for this but here’s a great example as to why. Appearing on the Neal Boortz radio show, Cain said that Obama’s never been a part of the black experience in America. This is just one of the myriad reasons that Cain said that he’d mop the floor with Obama in a debate. […]

  20. Anonymous
    October 11th, 2011 @ 10:39 pm

    Any that hold still long enough will be shot – I mean, photographed!

  21. Anonymous
    October 11th, 2011 @ 10:40 pm

    I hope not. The closest thing I have to a Hawaiian shirt is my guayabera, if you don’t count the small mountain of anime convention T-shirts in my inventory.

  22. Anonymous
    October 11th, 2011 @ 10:41 pm

    I’ve never done ether using a tire gauge, and eagerly await your illuminating discourse on same.

  23. Dianna Deeley
    October 11th, 2011 @ 11:21 pm

    I’ve been proofing today, so, it’s “gauge”.

    A “gage” is a gauntlet or glove, or an undertaking.

    Sorry – I’m very tired. Long day.

  24. Dianna Deeley
    October 11th, 2011 @ 11:23 pm

    Er…gauge¬† is looking weird to me. Will someone please make sure I haven’t lost my mind?

  25. Bob Belvedere
    October 11th, 2011 @ 11:28 pm

    You’re allowed to do that here.

  26. We Don’t Get Bloomberg TV … : The Other McCain
    October 12th, 2011 @ 12:53 am

    […] surging momentum, will be able to land more solid blows next Tuesday in the Las Vegas debate. And we’ll be there¬†in Vegas.Category: Da Tech Guy, Election 2012, New HampshireComments […]

  27. Zilla of the Resistance
    October 12th, 2011 @ 6:45 am

    Congratulations on your mega milestone!  I linked to you here & also told everyone to hit your freaking tip jar:
    Good luck, Stacy, Wombat, and Smitty! I can’t wait to read all the great stuff you will post from the road!

  28. Bob Belvedere
    October 12th, 2011 @ 11:19 am

    You really shouldn’t have admitted that last part in public.

  29. Bob Belvedere
    October 12th, 2011 @ 11:20 am

    I forgot dammit: HAPPY EIGHT MILLION!

    October 18th, 2011 @ 7:59 pm

    […] 2013Oct. 12: Vegas, Baby: Republican Armies March Toward Political Battle of the CenturyOct. 11: 8,000,000: Fear and Loathing on Vegas Debate Media Credential Deadline DayOct. 1: Fear And Smitty In Las Vegas/**/ […]