Michael Barone

Is she neglecting her family? Well, how often has Obama tucked his daughters in lately? For more than a week we've seen the No. 1 person on the Democratic ticket argue that he's better prepared than the No. 2 person on the Republican ticket. That's not a winning argument even if you win it. As veteran California Democrat Willie Brown says, "The Republicans are now on offense, and Democrats are on defense."

Perhaps the Obama campaign strategists expected their many friends in the mainstream media to do their work for them. Certainly they tried. But their efforts have misfired, and the grenades they lobbed at Palin have ricocheted back and blown up in their faces. Voters are on to their game.

Pollster Scott Rasmussen finds that 68 percent believe "most reporters try to help the candidate they want to win" and that 51 percent -- more than support McCain -- believe the press is "trying to hurt" Sarah Palin. The press and the Democratic ticket are paying the price for decades of biased mainstream media coverage.

I am not the only one to notice that John McCain and Sarah Palin have gotten inside the Obama campaign's (and mainstream media's) OODA loop. Blogger Charlie Martin sprang into pixels on www.americanthinker.com before I could spring into print with this column. But as I write, Barack Obama is in his second daily news cycle of explaining why his "lipstick on a pig" comments are not a sexist attack on the hockey mom who compared herself to a pit bull with lipstick.

Robert Coram describes what can happen when one player gets inside another's OODA loop. "If someone truly understands how to create menace and uncertainty and mistrust, then how to exploit and magnify the presence of these disconcerting elements, the loop can be vicious, a terribly destructive force, virtually unstoppable in causing panic and confusion and -- Boyd's phrase is best -- 'unraveling the competition.' ... The most amazing aspect of the OODA loop is that the losing side rarely understands what happened."

John Boyd would have been a terrific political consultant.


Michael Barone

Michael Barone, senior political analyst for The Washington Examiner (www.washingtonexaminer.com), is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a Fox News Channel contributor and a co-author of The Almanac of American Politics. To find out more about Michael Barone, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com. COPYRIGHT 2011 THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER. DISTRIBUTED BY CREATORS.COM