In US politics late night talk show hosts have always held some major sway - that's why candidates want to be on their shows.
So for McCain to piss off David Letterman by pulling out of an appearance at the last minute, claiming "country first" and then appear on a cable TV news show down the road is a really desperate move.
As Andrew Sullivan put it:
You may get away with lying to the rest of us, but this man is powerful enough to expose you - and ridicule you. Here's another surreal moment in a campaign where pop cultural figures are standing up to raw lies and power as effectively as the MSM. More effectively, in fact.This is the short version.
This is hugely viral.
Here's MSNBC's Keith Olbermann (a personal fave) standing in for McCain on Letterman.
Some cynical commentators have suggested that the entire "I'm shuttering the campaign" move might have been because of this rather 'put your palms on your face' interview with Palin (oh, and this, and this):
Interesting point from Danny Finkelstein in in Times today "this election is not the nail biting close contest that is being portrayed". Well, doh!
After that to Finkelstein point, I added:
Do ya'think journos might have a little, er, self interest here Danny?
Why isn't the electoral map getting much play?
But my second, let's call it nuanced, reaction is to look at what's not being reported.
Like Palin and her 'witchdoctor'. McCain and his lobbyists. The 'maverick' meme'. Zero play for the veterans against McCain. Etc.
'Liberal' US media??? Seems more like a marriage which had been in denial and breaking up these past weeks.