Daily Flog: Desperate McCain embraces socialism

The only things we have to sneer at are candidates themselves. In a move even more desperate than the unprecedented, frantic steps federal officials are taking to stanch a hemorrhaging economy, John McCain promised last night a new era of GOP-style socialism for Americans.

When the forensics are finally done on last night's "town hall" debate, when we have time to step back and look at this campaign, we'll just have to snicker in disbelief.

Sure, we might have to do it while sitting curbside in front of our foreclosed homes.

The Wall Street Journal's Laura Meckler and Christopher Cooper recorded the instant history this way:

Republican Sen. John McCain used the second presidential debate to call for a $300 billion effort to help financially troubled homeowners stay in their homes, an attempt to counter an economic crisis that has largely benefited his rival, Democratic Sen. Barack Obama.

Under the Arizona lawmaker's plan, the government would buy the mortgages of homeowners who cannot afford their monthly payments to help prop up the troubled U.S. housing market. The campaign said it would be implemented using authority granted in the $700 billion rescue plan just passed by Congress.

The plan would represent a large new federal expenditure from a candidate who has typically railed against big government.

We're accustomed to corporate welfare — for the latest example, see Helen Kennedy's item in this morning's Daily News:

Just six days after sticking taxpayers with an $85 billion bailout, AIG's top executives dropped $500,000 whooping it up at a swanky California beach resort.

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But welfare for people, not executives?

No matter what McCain vowed, promised, pledged last night, one thing is certain: There would no way in hell that any GOP administration would ever actually implement a bailout for average Joes and Janes. (That doesn't mean that the Democrats will do it.)

You can take that to the bank — if you can find one standing.

At least you still have a computer, so start clicking . . .

NO PARTICULAR ORDER:

Wall Street Journal: 'Housing Pain Gauge: Nearly 1 in 6 Owners 'Under Water'

Washington Post: 'Retirement Savings Lose $2 Trillion in 15 Months'

Salon: 'This town hall didn't help John McCain'

Wall Street Journal: 'U.S. Rewrites Financial Playbook: Agencies Employ Ad Hoc, Rapid-Fire Policy Making; No Time for Second-Guessing'

N.Y. Post: 'DOW MAY HIT 8,750: FEDERAL RESCUE TEAM IS PUSHING ON A STRING'

International Herald Tribune: 'Dangerous spent fuel returned to US'

N.Y. Times: '30 Civilians Died in Afghan Raid, U.S. Inquiry Finds'

Ethics Daily: 'Palin Stuck Between Rock and Tube of Lipstick'

The Register (U.K.): 'Yahoo! engineer arrested in Indian terror swoop'

The Register (U.K.): 'US Army gets eco-conscious, preps mega solar plant: Get in da choppah, Mother Nature!!'

The Register (U.K.): 'US brain trust: Beware of trawling-for-terrorist apps'

The Register (U.K.): 'Net game turns PC into undercover surveillance zombie: Smile, your webcam has been clickjacked'

Evening Times (Scotland): 'Laughing taxi driver knocked cyclist off bike'

Slate: 'Bogus Trend of the Week: Dudes With Cats' (Jack Shafer)

N.Y. Post: 'INVESTOR CONFAB SINGIN' IN THE RAIN'

Dawn (Pakistan): 'Quake survivors now forgotten'

Beijing Morning News: '38 Hummers Block Traffic in Shenyang'

China Digital Times: 'Satire: The Sanlu Incident Is Another Poisoned Arrow Targeting Our National Industry From the Imperialist Reactionaries!'

Dawn (Pakistan): 'Blasts rock Lahore market; 7 injured'

N.Y. Times: 'In Blow to Bush, Judge Orders 17 Guantanamo Detainees Freed'

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