McCain talk

McCain is speaking at work in some kind of fireside chat. Various bits:

"After I lost the primary to Bush, I slept like a baby. Slept for 2 hours, cried, slept for 2 hours..."

He is worried about global warming. He believes "Congress spends money like a drunken sailor, and he's never met a sailor with as much imagination as his colleagues." He is a fan of Ronald Reagan, and vetoing bills which have pork. "The first bill with pork in it that crosses my desk as President of the United States, I will veto it. And the people in that bill will be famous - you will know their names. You'll be able to find them on Google."

He thinks that the Iraq war was handled terribly, but given the current situation, more troops is the best solution. He also thinks we should probably attack Iran, although it is a complicated situation and we should be doing lots of other things too.

He uses the phrase "My friends" a lot. He gives long answers to difficult questions, which was kind of nice.

First question: "It's nice to have you here. It's pretty unusual for a Republican to be invited to Google." McCain: "Some of your best friends are Republicans?" "Speaker: Most of the people in high-tech are either liberals or libertarians. Why do you think we should be Republicans?" McCain responded with a very small-government, low-taxes, less regulation, but interventionist and large-military answer. Basically libertarian-hawk. On Google:

"I think I am more in line with you here than the Democrats are. I believe in less regulation. I believe the internet is the best invention since the printing press. The more that this can flourish - the reason I opposed internet taxes - the more it can spread all over the world, the better the world will be. That's the Republican philosophy."

Someone asked him how he would react to a bill enshrining the right to privacy in the Constitution. He said he was in favor of the right to privacy, but he would have to see the details of the bill. I think the right to privacy is totally BS, but it's nice to hear a politician want to hear the details rather than just endorsing with empty platitudes.

A speaker asked how McCain can simultaneously praise FDR and claim to be in favor of small government. McCain's response pretty much pigeonholed him as a small-government hawk - he said that FDR faced extraordinary challenges in preparing for WWII, he admires him for doing so, he thinks it would have been much harder to win the war without the New Deal, even though it was an economic waste. So he likes small-government, unless there is a crisis, but he also seems to see a lot of crises.

Ok, I'm getting bored of all the politician talk, I'm outta here.

UPDATE: McCain doesn't hate atheists (or at least, isn't willing to say so), and he is in favor of cheap Brazilian ethanol, nuclear power, and research into alternatives. He made a pretty strong statement in favor of nuclear power, actually, as the best way to generate power without greenhouse gases.

On gays in the military, he says that Don't Talk Don't Tell is working, according to his generals and leaders etc, and he relies on them. The questioner pressed by saying that several dozen translators have been fired due to being gay, how does that make our country any safer? McCain said he could basically just repeat his answer - he trusts the people in charge of the military, it's their job to recommend to him that the policy be changed.

Immigration: "If Google is to maintain it's supremacy in the world, we need immigration. Guard our borders, but let lots of people in, as long as they have biometric identification. Don't give amnesty to people already here, put them in line behind everyone else."

Globalization: "I am a Free-Trader. America can compete with anyone in the world, as long as they don't have barriers to our products." Exception for blatant abuses of IP.

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Online gambling?

"I believe the internet is the best invention since the printing press. The more that this can flourish - the reason I opposed internet taxes - the more it can spread all over the world, the better the world will be."

Yeah, the Internet is the greatest thing, unless you use it to gamble.

I guess no one breached the subject of online gambling? It is, to many, what John McCain is most famous for: his relentless pursuit of an Internet gambling ban.

This is the one area where Google has seriously disappointed me. Google voluntarily banned all online gambling advertising via adWords, without a fight. Why? The DOJ's "theory" that advertising online gambling constitutes aiding and abetting is seriously in left field. They wouldn't even try to test that in court; and Google would win if they did. DON'T BE EVIL.