April 2nd, 2008
04:57 PM ET

McCain: Americans cynical about their country

Sen. John McCain speaks at the Navy and Marine Corps Memorial Stadium today in Annapolis, Maryland. Click the Play Button the see what Jack and our viewers had to say.(PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES) 

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Telling the American people they are cynics may not be the best way to get them to vote for you for president... but that's what John McCain is doing.

In a speech at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland today, the presumptive Republican nominee talked about the reasons why he thinks many Americans have become cynical about our country. He says for some, it's because of the state of our economy. For others, it's a reaction to the government's mistakes and incompetence. But McCain thinks that in some cases the cynicism isn't a reaction to feeling let down by the government, country or social institutions, but rather a result of people taking this country and the liberties it provides for granted.

He says that for some Americans, their idea of liberty is "the right to choose among competing brands of designer coffee." McCain says if Americans find fault with our country, they should make it a better one. He also calls on people to take on a greater cause than themselves, by doing things like joining the military, running for public office or helping feed the hungry.

There is also an update when it comes to McCain's age and health status... his campaign is now saying the candidate's medical records will no longer be released by April 15th as they had previously promised. Instead, they're now saying we should see that stuff "sometime in May."

Finally, James Dobson, a leading conservative and founder of "Focus on Family," in a personal letter to the Wall Street Journal says, "I have seen no evidence that Senator McCain is successfully unifying the Republican Party or drawing conservatives into his fold."

Here’s my question to you: Is it helpful to John McCain’s campaign to say Americans are cynical about their country?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Leslie writes:
At least it is truthful, Jack! What McCain needs to add to the discussion is the role his own duplicitous pandering has played in causing us to be cynical. From the beginning of his campaign, from fawning over the Religious Right conservatives he once scorned, to licking Bush's boots as he marches lock-step in the "war on terror," McCain has certainly given Americans no reason to feel optimistic and trusting about our politicians.

P. from Fort Myers, Florida writes:
McCain is absolutely right! The Democratic Party is harping on every misery possible, most of which are beyond the means of any president to actually fix. Personal responsibility/accountability for bad financial decisions, career choices, and all manner of social ills are being shuffled to the government to somehow create a new program or funding stream to handle everything from healthcare, joblessness, and poor financial investments. A psychological malaise hangs over the nation–and everybody is looking to government for an answer.

Brian from Moscow, Idaho writes:
Jack, No because instead of helping people find reasons to abandon cynicism, his statement only puts voters on the defense, which is a terrible strategy. His stating this now puts voters in the position to defend themselves against him, which is never a good place for a candidate to be.

Tom from Boston writes:
I think the fact is that the vast majority of Americans are sick and tired, mad as hell, and even embarrassed about what has happened over the past seven years. Does that make us cynical? Perhaps a better word is worried – worried about our economy, worried about our stature in the world, worried about the debacle in Iraq and the lives, money, and increased number of enemies it has caused us. Given this, I don't see how this could be of any benefit to a tired old man who confesses he doesn't know a lot about the economy and whose foreign policy is a scary extension of the status quo.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (222 Responses)
  1. Allan,Cameron Park, Ca.

    I guess I would wonder why. With what this Administration has put us through I wonder why it took so long.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:27 pm |
  2. Evan

    No, it's not helpful at all. Cynicism towards our country (and the public officials running it) is probably one of McCain's greatest enemies, because he stands for the same old same old, the way things are, staying the course. He represents everything about Washington that Americans hate and want to change. Simply put, it's the old ways against the new, and he's standing strong for the old.

    Penfield, NY

    April 2, 2008 at 2:31 pm |
  3. Joe in DE

    Well itis true, so I can't fault McCain. There is good reason for – spelled BUSH.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:32 pm |
  4. Ronald Kepics

    Hi Jack:

    I do not share tha opinion. I think the American People may be cynical about the candidates. To say the American people are cynical about their country is an incorrect assumption by the McCain camp. Again Mr. McCain put his foot in his mouth. Yes, it would be damageing to the McCain camp to say the American people are cynical about their country.

    Ron K. San Diego.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:33 pm |
  5. Diane, Barneveld, NY

    Any truth in any republican's campaign, including John Bush McCain, would be a breath of fresh air.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:35 pm |
  6. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    In the great words spoken by Bill Murray in the movie Stripes; "That's a fact Jack". At least he is being realistic in some areas rather than trying to sweep it under the carpet and besides you can only talk about the weather so long.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:37 pm |
  7. Bob from Traverse city Michigan

    I don't believe a comment like that can help mcCain's campaign Jack, not if you consider the reason americans are cynical. Dick bush and george cheney's (oops sorry) misguided arrogance has brought this country to the brink of a financial holocost. Their convoluted effort to spread "democracy" at gunpoint has discraced our image worldwide. Their unholy alliance with far right wing religious extremist's has polarized the citizenry of this country. These are the people Senator McCain has decided to marry politically. When he makes comments about americans cynicism he is at the same time pointing out the flaws in his own campaign.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  8. paul W.Dc


    The definition of a cynic is someone who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. Some Americans are cynical some are not. So its helpful in some respects, if he defined who was cynical then the Press would be up in arms complaining that they aren't cynical at all and then would find ways to get back at him. So it is helpful if he doesn't say which Americans are cynical.....................the consuming public knows anyway.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  9. Efren

    Why shouldn't we be cynical? We are in war that most of Americans don't want, people are being laid off left and right, and gas is about to hit $4 a gallon! Shall I go dance in the streets and be happy?

    April 2, 2008 at 2:41 pm |
  10. David,San Bernardino,CA.

    It doesn't matter if the comment is helpful or not. It is hard to accept the truth. Americans have for years watched as our elected officials lie through their teeth to get elected and then sell us out for campaign contributions until the next election. Here in California the politicians have so gerry-mandered their districts that no one bothers to run against them anymore because anyone from the opposition party has no chance to win. It is like this in every state. When the politicians write their own boundaries for their districts and choose their own voters it's no wonder that we are all cynics.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  11. Bob L. Philadelphia, PA

    Yes. Being honest here, we are cynical. If we were not, this would not be a democracy. Cynacism is one of those things that bring about change in a democracy.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:42 pm |
  12. ron

    “George Bush Out”, ”Barack Obama In”,- It’s as simple as that.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:45 pm |
  13. BJ Smith

    Helpful? Seems more like a hurdle, a huge hurdle. He needs to sound more like a democrat.

    BJ in Seminole, FL

    April 2, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  14. Eddie, Quebec

    Cynical: believing the worst of human nature and motives; having a sneering disbelief in e.g. selflessness of others

    I believe he's right. We are all cynical about him and his pal Georges.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  15. Jim Galvin

    Honesty is a risky business for any politician.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  16. IFEANYI AZUBIKE Houston, Texas

    Wherever he got that information must be similar to where Bush got the information to attack Iraq. McCain has by his utterances, support for the war and his economic agenda raised serious doubts about which country or planet he is aspiring to lead. Is it not down right stupid to aspire to be the lead cynic or have birds of same feather stopped flocking together? I may have had stronger words for him but feel constrained because I really believe he is either suffering from age related dementia or senility.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:50 pm |
  17. Scott L. - Wichita, Kansas

    I don't know if it's helpful, but it's definitely true, Jack. This is a good thing, though, because only when there are enough cynics actually voicing their minds will we have a government more concerned with the country than with their own private agendas and with party politics.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:52 pm |
  18. Richard Sternagel

    I don't think Americans want cynicism from their leaders be they Democrat or Republican! What is needed is a leader they can trust who has honesty and integrity in his character! A leader who won't rush off to war without exhausting diplomacy! A person that thinks through tough decisions while informing the public! That person is Barack Obama!

    April 2, 2008 at 2:52 pm |
  19. Doug Shuck


    No, it doesn't help McCain's campaign but it is the truth. Most Americans (with the exception of the far right and the totally deluded,which I think includes the"far right") are cynical about their country. Our cynicism comes form what Bush & the Republican Party has done to our country and how they are destroying our economy & our lives! I am suprised that McCain would go within 100 light years of this subject, see what I meant about being delusional.

    I found the following quote of PJ O'Rourke's which addresses this silliness head on – "When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators." This is apparently what also happens to the "TRUTH" in Washington DC as well. When TRUTH is controlled by Presidents an Legislators the first victim is democracy.

    Jack – Keep Up The Great Work!


    April 2, 2008 at 2:54 pm |
  20. Jamaal Kansas City Kansas

    John Mccain can say what ever he wants he know that he will not be the next President

    April 2, 2008 at 2:54 pm |
  21. dennis north carolina

    They are not cvnical about their country and they love their country but their elected officals and some of the people running for office make the people cynical of their goverment and how they do business.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:54 pm |
  22. Daniel


    The Preacher Wright of the United Trinity Church in many respects spoke the truth in his sermons. Except of course when he said “God Damn America” It is true, Hillary Clinton has never suffered as the blacks have done, or even remotely gone through what
    Barack Obama went through in his long trek to become a senator. He is truly a man of the World who if he became president will open the door to other minority groups, such as Latinos, Jews, Mormons and women etc. Obama is a one off African American running for President at present, but will be followed by future white Presidents. So white America, don’t despair.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:54 pm |
  23. Tom, Avon, Maine, The Heart of Democracy

    He's always getting things wrong. We distrust George Bush not the country.

    The whole reason the polls show we want rid of the electoral college is because we believe in the country as much as Jefferson, Adams, or Madison.

    Why we want Congressional investigations of the Bush White House is because they make Senator Clinton look truthful. Why we trust the country is because outside of the beltway you are still going to find Americans.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:55 pm |
  24. Doug Shuck


    No, it doesn't help McCain's campaign but it is the truth. Most Americans (with the exception of the far right and the totally deluded,which I think includes the"far right") are cynical about their country. Our cynicism comes form what Bush & the Republican Party has done to our country and how they are destroying our economy & our lives! I am suprised that McCain would go within 100 light years of this subject, see what I meant about being delusional.

    I found the following quote of PJ O'Rourke's which addresses this silliness head on – "When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things to be bought and sold are legislators." This is apparently what also happens to the "TRUTH" in Washington DC as well. When TRUTH is controlled by Presidents an Legislators the first victim is democracy.

    Jack – Keep Up The Great Work!

    Rochester Hills, MI

    April 2, 2008 at 2:56 pm |
  25. disadvantagetoHillary

    Jack as you stated barack does better when people get to know him better. He proved this in many states in the past most recently Wisconson. Clinton was suppose to win Wisconson , but when the people get to know obama he beat her by a bit margin. Trust me jack when April 22 comes I would be surprised if Obama beats Clinton or if she does beat him it is not going to be by much my guess is 51 to 48 it can go either way.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:56 pm |
  26. J.C. from Raleigh, NC

    Cynical? How can you say that? Didn't we go into Iraq to bring freedom and then after "Mission Accomplished" have numerous Christian sects climbing all over themselves to have H.

    Cynical? How can McCain say that? Didn't H.W. invade Iraq to bring freedom and after "Mission Accomplished" have his Christian crazies fall all over themselves to send missionaries to Iraq. Didn't he invigorate FEMA by allowing Michael Brown to have on-the-job training in emergency management. Didn' t we show the world how freedom works in Abu Ghraib? Haven't we reworked habeas in a most creative way? This proves that McCain is enveloped in senior moments. Cynical?

    April 2, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  27. Ray Kinserlow

    The next thing you know McCain will be calling Americans "unpatriotic" because they don't like G.W. Bush anymore.

    Ray Kinserlow
    Lubbock, Texas

    April 2, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  28. Paulette Dallas,PA

    When McCain isn't beating the war drum, he continually puts foot in mouth. I don't think the guy knows what to say – let alone DO – if he ever reaches the White House. The Republicans aren't even happy that he is their candidate. He just doesn't get it and is in a tizzy so he lashes out at the American public. I know a retired high ranking vet that was next to McCain at a fundraiser in Philly a while back and that McCain was rude and almost nasty while greeting the contributors while they passed through the receiving line. He' just a crotchy old man!

    April 2, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  29. Glenn

    Washington State

    It is helpful to McCain's campaign to talk about American's cynicism. It acknowledges what is going on, but I think that the Senator would be more accurate by saying that Americans are cynical about our government and some of its policies and actions. For example, why is congress wasting time on steriods in baseball when they could be addressing the misuse of social security numbers which can and has been leading to identity theft.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  30. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    No, it is not helpful for John McCain or anyone else to say Americans are selfish. I suggest John McCain or anyone who says Americans are cynical is to review that state of our economy.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  31. Karen - Branson MO

    Nope...the record numbers of voters turning out for the Democrats is proof enough that Americans are a bit cynical...McCain will have a tough time during the national elections no matter what happens to the Democratic primary.

    April 2, 2008 at 2:59 pm |
  32. Andy, PA

    McCain has to say something to distract voters from the latest tribulations in Iraq. How's that for cynical, Johnny-boy?

    April 2, 2008 at 3:03 pm |
  33. Jay - Atlanta

    No...American cynicism will hurt McCain (unless Clinton gets the Democrat nomination) because he's been for so long a part of the problem, and doesn't offer anything but more of the same in terms of solution. And by the way, there's a huge difference between cynical and pragmatic. I'd suggest most voters are the latter.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  34. Ralph at NYC

    No, Jack. Most see McCain as a continuation of Bush and his policies, so if there is cynicism about this country and its policies - particularly our economic woes and the quagmire in Iraq–these will be inherited by the GOP and its Presidential candidate.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:04 pm |
  35. Tom Huntington,NY

    Cynical! McCain was against the Bush tax cuts and now he wants to make them permanent. He was for imigration now he's against it. He was for Roe V Wade, campaign finance reform and against torture but now he's changed his mind. Cynical ! What do we have to be cynical about.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:05 pm |
  36. Keith

    I personally don't put much stock in anything McBush says, Jack.

    After all, we're talking about: Mr. 100 years in Iraq... Mr., The Economy is not my strong suit... Mr. Bomb, Bomb, Bomb... Bomb Bomb Iran.

    I haven't felt better about my country's future in a looooong time, knowing that a Bush Replublican (including John McBush) won't be in the Oval Office after 01/20/09.

    What John doesn't realize is the reason so many Americans "seem" cynical to him is because of what his buddy and the chickenhawks have done to this country's image, economy, and safety, in less than a decade.

    This guy W was really bad for America. The sad part is, we won't begin to fully understand it until after he's out of the Whitehouse. We've just gotten a whif of it so far.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:07 pm |
  37. jean lindboe

    Bloomint Prairie, MN. --- Sorry I never heard him say that. I must have missed church that day.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:07 pm |
  38. mikeytherhino

    I don't know If it's Helpful, but it does reflect accurately the way we feel about America in general and the state of the nation's Political leadership in particular. We have been this way for about as long as I've been around. Maybe it wasn't true before I was born, in 1967, but it's just been that way for as long as I remember.

    Mike, From Staten Island, New York

    April 2, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  39. Jerry SCS Michigan

    Yes! Sometimes the "Truth" hurts. But thats why the word means so much. If he were the same man he was in 2000 ...I wouldnt think twice about voting for him this year. ..But he aint...So now I'll be thinking twice.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:08 pm |
  40. Ralph, Long Island, NY

    Recent history shows honesty from politicians works about as well for them as a guy telling a girl the truth in a bar at 3AM. I respond favorably to lies, much more favorably to blantant lies, and am in total ecstasy when I suspend reality.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:10 pm |
  41. George Wilson

    Doesn't he know that we all have a reason to be cynical, especially of our present leadership? Being cynical means that you have doubts, and boy do I have doubts. People think he is a hero, and maybe to some he is, but what he did wasn't a galant act, he did it because he didn't have a choice. Those who come back in coffins are our heros, and they are the ones who are NOT honored when they come home as they should be, but most of them are not graduates of the Naval Academy, or have Admirals for a father, so guess maybe that could have something to do with it. . So back to the cynical question, I had much rather be cynical, that just plain stupid to trust our present leaders.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:12 pm |
  42. Jan Davis, Knoxville, TN

    It's not helpful but is typical of Republicans who have a poor view of everyone except the rich and powerful. I am so proud to be a Yellow Dog Democrat. I cannot believe that John McCain is saying he doesn't believe it is government's place to help people in the home mortgage mess while the rich banks get bailed out! It is beyond my understanding how anyone that is left in the middle class or anyone in the lower class would ever consider voting Republican.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  43. Terry from North Carolina

    Nothing can help McCains campaign. Americans are not cynical about their country, their afraid for their country, under the present administration there has been no direction, only a fixation on Iraq. McCain is not going to benefit from this.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:15 pm |
  44. Charles in Florida

    Not helpful at all Jack! With Countrywide, Big Oil and Bear Stearns’ big wigs getting paid during the market meltdown and the little guys just holding on to survive another day. What would make McCain think that about us?

    April 2, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  45. tim from Ravenna, OH

    What Mr. McCain should understand about America that I don't believe he can see is that for the most part Americans have no desire to hear the truth. We want to feel good and be entertained. If you give a speech that makes people feel good you can do or say just about anything else you want. It isn't cynacism, it's narcissistic stupidity.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  46. James in Idaho

    Jack, I'm glad he's finally gotten a clue... I just hope he doesn't regard the obvious observation as justification for an executive position and a cookie.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:18 pm |
  47. Bill, Quarryville, PA

    I don't think it helps it any. I thought Senator Mccain was different. But it seems he has reached into the republicans tricks box. Whenever they have no answers for questions about the war going bad or the economy going south. They start questioning people's patriotism or label them as being cynical. He should realize by now that the majority of the people in this country are tired of the way the Iraq war is being handled and what is being done about our economy going into a recession.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:18 pm |
  48. Bob, VA

    Americans are cynical about McBush and not the country, after eight years of his buddy, GW's rule.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:19 pm |
  49. April in texas

    I don't think its helpful Jack, after all hes running on what many refer to as a 3rd term of Bush.

    Obama 08
    April in Austin Texas

    April 2, 2008 at 3:22 pm |
  50. Velle In Halifax

    I'm not cynical about my country, I'm cynical about its future in the hands of the bozos who've been eroding our control of the government for the last 30 years. War stories are fine but Senator McCain was asleep when he sat on the oversight committee that allowed the savings & loan debacle of the late 80s. And it appears he's learned nothing of economics since then. If I am cynical, John McCain has only his lacadaisical, flip-floping while occupying a Senate Seat to thank for it.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:23 pm |
  51. Jarrold


    I don't think Americans are being cynical they are being truthful about our past and present. McCain he makes comments like it doesn't matter if Al Qaeda was in Iraq before we got there but they are there now he is being sarcastic which by definition is being cynical. Americans are not fools and many know that while we try to be the authority on Nuclear Weapons we are the only country in history that has shown the lack of judgment and restraint in possessing such armory. We made that evident in Hiroshima and Nagasaki when we dropped the A-Bomb.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:24 pm |
  52. Lance in Texas

    Helpful or not helpful to McCain's campaign ?? My question is who cares ??... We ARE cynical because of McCain and those of his ilk (of each party) in Washington who have given us now reason to fel otherwise in a generation. My personal cynicism toward McCain began when he cozied up to those who savaged his reputation and character eight years ago while abandoning the principles that attracted Independents such as myself to him in 2000. The man would say (or should I say read from the teleprompter) anything to get appease the 25% who want a third Bush term. I have lost all respect for this genuine American Hero...

    April 2, 2008 at 3:25 pm |
  53. mk

    It's only helpful to McCain's campaign if he can turn the negative into a positive – if he can acknowledge the problem and show how he will remedy the situation. Since the country is somewhat jaded by a sour economy and an ongoing war that is devastating in just about every way, chances are close to zero that McCain can help in either of these areas. He wants to continue with basically more of the same, which is clearly hurting the country. He is just not showing how he can build the country back up. This is just not an election favorable for a follow-up Republican act.

    mk in sc

    April 2, 2008 at 3:27 pm |
  54. Bruce St Paul MN

    True or not, it is not helpful to say it. People are cynical, but they don't like it. They will vote for hope and optimism. Straight talk may get some applause here and there, but it does not placate the masses. Just ask Fritz Mondale. He was somewhat realistic about what needed to be done, while Ron Reagan was seeing morning in America, the shining city on the hill, and riding high in the saddle.It's hard to be the anit-hope candidate.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  55. Stacy from Northern Virginia

    Helpful for his campaign? Maybe. More importantly he is saying it how it really is. I am not voting for him, but I respect his honesty.
    Americans are very cynical. They are fed up with partisan politics in Congress, tired of this Administration in general and to top it all off – they are broke.

    Fairfax, VA

    April 2, 2008 at 3:29 pm |
  56. Chris Swansea, MA

    Jack, It may not be helpful but its true. For 86 years baseball fans all over the world said Red Sox fans were cynical. Now since they have been doing things right no one says that anymore. As soon as our government pulls thier heads out of where they stuck them Americans won't have to be cynical anymore either.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:30 pm |
  57. wendy Illinois

    Yes, it's helpful.....because he's right.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:31 pm |
  58. Heather in Huntingdon Valley, PA

    I am not cynical of my country, I am cynical of the establishment in Washington that has no sense of the world and the American people who are living beyond the corrupt beltway!

    We are in a war that is widely reguarded to be a war that was rushed into and based on misinformation (lies). This war is costing our country money that needs to go to health care, alternative energy, education, and the housing crisis. Our money and efforts oversees should be going to stopping the bloodshed in Africa and helping the starving children in the world.

    No politican has the right to tell any American that they are cynical about our country! WE LOVE OUR COUNTRY! We are cynical of the poeple who have betrayed our trust in Washington.

    It is time for a change!

    April 2, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
  59. Michael inLorton, Virginia

    Jack: Yes. I think Americans are cyncial about the state of the nation. Just look at what is happening to this country. Our leaders know the price of everything, and the value of nothing. Our leaders merely "read" their bitter lessons from the past and promise prematurely a disappointed future. Amiercans are smelling the flowers, and at the same time looking for a coffin.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
  60. Allen L Wenger

    It is helpful, but that's about all he has going for him. You can't be optimistic or hopeful and vote for John McCain. His voters need to be pessimistic about the future, contemptuous of Hillary Clinton, Skeptical of Barack Obama, and distrustful of Democrats in general.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
  61. Mary- Louisville, KY

    No, because for the most part, he represents and advocates the very things about which Americans are cynical.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:32 pm |
  62. Gaz of Oz

    It would be cynical of John McCain's campaign to say Americans are the antonym of cynical about their country. Of course, Joe Lieberman would then need to whisper in Mr McCain's ear that antonyms are not nuclear material, and therefore don't justify bomb-bomb-bomb-ing Iran.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  63. Vinnie Vino

    I can just hear him now " I'm an old man I didn't know what I was saying" or " I was napping and I didn't understand the questions". McCain has to remember many Americans are sharpped tounged about this country because of the economic mess President Bush has created. So it is not helpful for his campaign to say anything about the people who are criticizing this country...

    C.I., New York

    April 2, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  64. Kurt

    Cynical as in pessimistic or sarcastic???? I say pessimistic, this country is on its last leg and I see no real change coming from either party. None of the candidates represent the interests of the working man or woman. Globalization and speading democracy abroad have put us on the brink of collapse as country. John, go out in the real world and leave the rose colored glasses in the lear jet.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  65. Richard (US Citizen) - Heriot Bay, B.C., Canada

    Mainstream America is in the real condition it's in. John McCain's campaigning so far hasn't offered any practical solutions that will improve that condition but he promises only more of the same conditions. For him to call realism cynicism is lunacism.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  66. Dan Kubas

    Yes, It will help us decide not vote for him. MCCain is nothing but a extension of the cynical president we already have. Dan

    April 2, 2008 at 3:37 pm |
  67. Mike from Syracuse NY


    No, but McCain has the annoying habit of telling it like it is, not as we'd like to hear it. Does anyone really think Obama or Clinton will be able to end the war as fast as they promise? At least McCain is up front about it.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  68. Brian - Trinidad

    This is straight talk and it will help him. Americans aren't going to fall for the fantasy candidate this time. The days of the slick charismatic candidate are numbered because that doesn't get the job done.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:50 pm |
  69. Grog

    I think McCain has it wrong. He should remember the Vietnam demonstrations. One sign I remember said "I love my country, but distrust the government." I think the same is more apparent now than even then. There is a marked distrust of all the trough feeding pigs that inhabit DC. The latest three running are no exception.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:56 pm |
  70. Kevin

    No , Our government is shipping jobs out of this country , Big business is paying CEO's "MILLIONS OF DOLLARS" a year , plus a bonus that will take care of their families for three or more generations , and were fighting a war thats costing billions , and now the government wants to give us $600 dollars to try to spur the economy. People are going to end up giving all that money to the oil companies , so they can get to work or buy fuel for the next winter season to heat their homes. Looks like the oil companies got another big paycheck heading their way. I wonder why were cynical about this country McCain ?

    April 2, 2008 at 3:56 pm |
  71. Ken, LA California

    Americans are cynical about their government and governance.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:59 pm |
  72. Nancy, Cunningham, TN

    McCain can tell like he sees it, the problem is that McCain's political party has made everyone cynical Looks like he would be out telling everyone how he plans to fix some of the problems rather than stay the course with the same mess that made us cynical. We've been lied to about a gazillion dollar war, watched as big business has filled their pockets at our expense, and watched as the Republicans have done nothing but help the few elite rich Americans. McCain needs to look in the mirror to see why we are cynical.

    April 2, 2008 at 3:59 pm |
  73. john marlton,nj

    McCain is stupid, just down right dumb and most of us are tired of his hero crap. Frankly, as a nation we thank him for his service but getting shot down is not an accomplishment. Being a POW, albeit a tremendous sacrifice, would only be considered an accomplishment if he leveraged the experience to stop torture at Gitmo, which he failed to do. As a Regan Republican I hereby petition election officials throughout the country to put a “None of the Above” option on all election ballots

    April 2, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  74. J. Onofre - CA

    I guess I could try and love McCain if he keeps giving us pet names.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  75. Praetorian, Ft. Myers, FL

    McCain is absolutely right!

    The democratic party is harping on every misery possible–most of which is beyond the means of any President to actually fix.

    Personal responsility/accountability for bad financial decisions, career choices, and all manner of social ills–is being shuffled to the government to somehow create a new program or funding stream to handle everything from healthcare, joblessness, and poor financial investments.

    A psychological malaise hangs over the nation–and everybody is looking to government for an answer.

    Extra jobs–savings, wise financial decsions–and paying the consequences for our mistakes is cure...not more government programs or spending.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:12 pm |
  76. Chryssa

    No – it'll become a self-fulfilling prophecy. The more polticians assume I don't care, the less I care. On the other hand, the more credit they give me, the more willing I am to work with them to make improvements.

    Cases in point: Romney's "Washington is Broken" slogan didn't carry him far. "Hope", on the other hand, has transformed our country.

    Boise, Idaho

    April 2, 2008 at 4:13 pm |
  77. Brian Rich


    No because instead of helping people find reasons to abandon cynicism, his statement only puts voters on the defense, which is a terrible strategy. His stating this now puts voters in the position to defend themselves against him, which is never a good place for a candidate to be.

    Moscow, Idaho

    April 2, 2008 at 4:14 pm |
  78. Rob G

    It's almost like McCain is telling the American people to suck it up, shut up & stop whining. Ya, I'm sure a statement like that will do wonders for his campaign.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:16 pm |
  79. Leslie

    At least it is TRUTHFUL, Jack! What McCain needs to add in the discussion is the role his own duplicitous pandering has played in causing us to be cynical. From the beginning of his campaign, from fawning over the Religious Right conservatives he once scorned, to licking Bush's boots as he marches lock-step in the "war on terror," McCain has certainly given Americans no reason to feel optimistic and trusting about our politicians. That said, I think a lot of us ARE feeling a kind of hope and inspiration and sense that "Yes, we CAN" change things, despite McCain's old-school politics.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:16 pm |
  80. Baby Boomer of Michigan

    McCain is so "out of touch" with main stream American that it scares me that people are actually backing him. It seems everything he stands for is related to Iraq only. Let's get real, the average person needs help with gas prices, mortgages, job losses, grocery prices, airline prices, you name it.. To think that people are cynical is an understatement. It looks to me that we have another candidate that will represent the upper 1% of this country... I wouldn't call myself cynical, I'd call myself pissed off...

    Go Obama ....

    April 2, 2008 at 4:17 pm |
  81. Tanilan

    Okay, what do we have to be optimistic about? Our economy is swirling downward, unemployment is getting worse, our kids are not getting the education they need, and our morality level is at an all time low. Yeah, lots to be optimistic about there.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:20 pm |
  82. William Sanford, NC

    John McCain saying Americans are cynical proves just how detached from reality he is! People are way beyond cynical to the point of wishing out loud in public that all those politicians in Washington, DC would jump out of an airplane without a parachute. John McCain can help his campaign by admitting how the federal government has undermined the standard of living in this country and saying "I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore". Where in this country is a candidate with a backbone?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:28 pm |
  83. greg

    To say that Americans are cynical about their country is not quite true. The truth is, they are cynical about the people running it, including McCain. Most Americans love their country and would die for it, but to put their trust in a politician, is another matter. Mr. McCain would be wise to address his own parties misgivings before accusing the people that pay his wages, of wondering why there lives in America are not getting better!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:28 pm |
  84. Ken

    Yes, Americans are cynical about their country, who wouldn't after seven years of the ignorance, arrogance and incompetence of Bush! A person would have to be deaf, dumb and blind not to realize that Bush, Cheney, Rice, Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz are war criminals and liars! The country is in a "downward spiral" as the result of the corporate fascists with the Republican myth of "free trade" which is only about corporate investments, not to the benefit of the working middle class. Please name one problem, mortgage crisis, Katrina, Bush Iraq War, Afghanistan, illegal aliens, criminal illegal aliens, unsafe food and products from "free trade" with China and elsewhere, just keep listing them! Bush could not lead a silent prayer in church, what a disgusting loser! Yes, McCain, Americans are "cynical" for good reason! The question is whether McCain even begins to understand why Americans feel as they do. Doubt it!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:30 pm |
  85. Tom from Illinois

    It's as though he's answering to Obama's message of change saying that people need to change the way they do things, not just the government. Obama says the government can do better, McCain says so can the people. It's not as pleasant and I don't see it winning any votes, but it's true and at least McCain is being honest.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:30 pm |
  86. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    Brilliant, McCain! Gee, I wonder why we might feel that way...DUH!
    The list of things to be cynical about stretches for miles!

    McCain, I was half way considering voting for you, but after that naive and totally stupid comment, no way will I consider you any more. Not even for dog catcher!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:32 pm |
  87. Josh, Cleveland, OH

    Welcome to the Straight Talk. I personally find it refreshing a candidate for president is finally being honest with the American public. I'd take Sen. McCain's honesty over Hillary Clinton's sniper fire story and Obama's lies about renegotiating NAFTA or both of their promises to withdraw U.S. troops from Iraq.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:33 pm |
  88. Scott

    McCain is confused. The American people are not cynical about their country, they are cynical about their country's recent leadership, which he represents.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  89. Brian

    Jack Americans are not using their cynicism enough cause we let Bush And Obama lie to us and most Americans believe these lies. we put one moron in the white house now with Obama and his not sure if she is proud of America wife we are working to fo it again Jack The American people need to wake up

    April 2, 2008 at 4:36 pm |
  90. Bill

    To me, it's just the flipside of JFK's "Ask not..." inaugural statement. The American people need to come out of their comfort zone. Obama is really saying the same thing.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:38 pm |
  91. JR

    Jack Cafferty and his merry band of liberal bloggers at it again.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  92. Linda, NY

    Cynical might be an understatement. Americans are angry, discouraged and miserable about what has happened to our lives under the corporate owned government. If this guy gets elected he might be looking back with fondness on the time he thought Americans were simply cynical.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:40 pm |
  93. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    Brilliant, McCain! Gee, I wonder why we might feel that way...DUH!
    The list of things to be cynical about stretches for miles!

    McCain, I was starting to consider voting for you, because you act presidential. Guess I was falling for your act. But after that grossly naive comment, no way will I consider you for anything, not even for dog catcher!

    Having another senior moment, John?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:41 pm |
  94. tony

    Well Jack, when one hears honesty, one has to admire it. Perhaps McCain said what he believed to be true. Perhaps if more people said what they believed was true rather than what would be good for themselves, their campaign, or whatever, we would have a better world. I for one admire honesty above all and respect the man for speaking his mind. Maybe we do take our nice lives for granted and do not work for our fellow men and women enough.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:42 pm |
  95. Bill

    This is just the flipside of JFK's "Ask not..." Inaugural comment. Americans need to step out of their comfort zone. Obama is saying something similar.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:42 pm |
  96. Jimbo Marshalltown, IA


    Eddie of Quebec gives the definition – the worst of human nature and motives.

    Cheney meets privately with the most profitable corporations on the planet, the Big Oil companies while holding the second highest public office in our government. So far it is the only thing I agree with McCain on. Damn right I'm cynical.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:43 pm |
  97. Cher, North Port, FL

    The Straight Talk Express speaks yet again.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:43 pm |
  98. J P

    When people are out of work, lost their homes to foreclosure, cannot afford medical care it is easy to understand why they could be cynical.

    Maybe Mr McCain would rather "LET THEM EAT CAKE"!!

    He as other members of Congress have a salary and protected pension as well as medical care – they do not have to rely on Social Security.

    Merge the Congressional pension & medical plans with Social Security and see how long it take Congress to find a fix!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  99. ron melbourne, fl.

    a better question is ; why are we criticizing him for stating the obvious?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  100. Denise

    Here is my problem with this statement. McCain seems to be of the sentiment of "pulling yourself up by your boot straps." But, if you don't have boot straps, how would you feel about this "country?" And when people express their unhappiness with this "country", they mean the current administration, and not the freedom's we have.
    Lastly, the American people are tired of millionaire politicians ribbing them for stating the truth about the disadvantages they are facing.
    And until McCain and some other's (of the like) try to live (minimum- wage) paycheck to paycheck, I don't think they have the right to declare American's comments as being cynical.

    Obama '08

    April 2, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  101. RajK

    Oh Yeah. We are cynical of what Mr Mc Cain is going to add to the existing problems created by Mr. Bush apart from maintaining our forces for a century.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:44 pm |
  102. Richard Schulman

    the only reason he said it because joe lieberman was whispering it to him from behind the flags.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:45 pm |
  103. Jane Knight

    Where has patriotism gone? I remember growing up with such pride that I was an American. Iwas taught the pledge of Allegience to the flag and was taught to respect the flag by facing it with my hand over my heart. Recently I heard Obama say that patriotism could be likened to a cult.I grew up in a military family I remember VJ day and watched the ceremonies on the boardwalk atop my father, shoulders. My eyes were on a young man with no legs or arms. A gray haired lady went to him and placed a wreath of flowers around his neck. I watched the tears stream from his eyes. I will never forget him. Instead of complaining about everything in our government, go to the Va or other vets org. and volunteer. Now I know why Tom Brokow titled his book The Greatest Generation.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:45 pm |
  104. Emeka

    We are cynical. That is true. We have leaders in Washington who do nothing for the middle class. We have the media that spins stories to their agenda. We don't believe anything our leaders say or do anymore because they do not do it for us, but rather big corporations. Sadly, not all of us can afford those bucks to get our voices heard.

    Albany, NY

    April 2, 2008 at 4:45 pm |
  105. sophia nyc

    Well, I'm not cynical and I'm from New York!

    Obama has changed my perspective.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:45 pm |
  106. Rayna

    Well, we are cynical. Who wouldn't be after 7 years of being subjected to hypocrites.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  107. Jordan

    The nomination of a senile war monger as presidential candidate of a political party is itself a justification for massive cynicism.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  108. sophia nyc

    McCain: when you tell Americans that you plan on keeping troops in Iraq for "another 100 years" and sing songs to the tune of "bomb, bomb, bomb Iran" your audience would be cynical. No?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  109. Shawn, Chicago

    I don't think we are cynical as a nation. That's the problem. We need to be. For instance, the tax rebate that everyone is celebrating. No one stops and wonders, "who, what, why, when, where and how?" They just grab the check and run. No one asks, where the money comes from nor do they realize that they will pay it back in tax dollars many times over. No one makes the connection that the rebate is designed to buy votes and push through pork ridden agendas, not rebuild our dying economy. We aren't too cynical, we're too stupid.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:46 pm |
  110. Ed from Durango

    The truth is the truth and the truth hurts sometimes. Maybe folks aren't cynical about their country, But I totally believe they are cynical about their inept government.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  111. Sheila from WA

    Hi Jack,

    It will not be helpful to his campaign.. Many Americans already volunteer through work experince programs, church programs, community programs. We have more volunteers now than ever. Americans are more cynical now than ever due to offshoring of good wage jobs, no solutions to the healthcare crisis in this country, the housing market melt down which was predicted 3-4 yrs ago but no one seemed to have the will to do something back then as long as there were hefty short term profits for wall street. Sky rocketing fuel prices which are causing the cost of everything else to skyrocket. Now we have Sen McCain telling everyone they are acting like spoiled children and should go volunteer.. I wonder how many people working 2-3 jobs just to make ends meet would have time to volunteer? Or those who spend full time hours looking for another job because they were just laid off?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  112. Dean

    Somehow it reminds me of a quote: "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country". That people attack this sentiment tells me that they are, well... cynical!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  113. E. Hansen

    I think focusing on whether McCain's campaign is affected by his addressing a very real cynicism that exist among many citizens perpetuates the idea that politicians must be disingenuous and deceptive to gain office. Of course there are cynics in our country, and why shouldn't the man who wants to lead this nation begin a dialogue about the reasons some citizens have become cynical. Perhaps the issue that McCain also seems to be addressing is a collective apathy and ignorance that pervades the majority of our populace. However, labeling these effects as cynicism is much easier to swallow for most citizens who would especially balk at someone pointing out their own personal failure in American democracy. I personally applaud his honesty and frankness, and hope people begin to look within themselves in order to discover how they can be a part of changing this nation for the better.
    What also strikes me is that Obama's campaign has gained unmatched support based on the very idea of changing a culture of cynicism and providing hope. Doesn't his entire rhetoric and campaign therefore admit to a cynicism and lack of hope currently infecting our country??

    April 2, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  114. Bruce - IL

    He's right on, the cynical one's are right here on this blog, complaining about how awful this country is. We have it pretty good, there may just be harder times every once and a while. You want to improve this country's job market, go to school and learn to do a job that makes you irreplaceable. If not, head off to Europe where you can pay twice as much in taxes, pay over $9 for a gallon of gas, and enjoy sub par health care. Sounds like fun to me.
    God bless this country, even with it's faults we're better off than anyone else in the world. (And that is due to the heroes such as John McCain. Shame on you for saying he is "exploiting" his military service)

    April 2, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  115. Taj

    It does not matter what he says. People know what it is. McCain has no chance of winning against Obama. It is Democrats time. We are going to move this country forward again in the right direction. Seven years of Republican administration has screwed up this country pretty, pretty good.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:47 pm |
  116. Jason

    I think this is definitly a negative statement to make. Although his point may be accurate, not many people in America want to be involved in politics or other aspects of government. The people want to be free to decide what they want to do, as this is a free country. They want to see people coming across our borders making these strides to become citizens, instead of given tax breaks and free money. Why should established Americans be penalized for being born here while a foriegn gets freebees? I think people are fed up, but I am still not willing to vote for any of the Democrates running for office, and there policies they want to impose as I believe will be more hurtfull then maintaining some of the current poicies some believe to be a burden currently.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:48 pm |
  117. Esther Cuyahoga Falls Ohio

    damn right i am a cynic I been here along time ok 51 years long and i seen us at a better time in this civilized world. and 400 people make more than the rest of us combined lets talk honestly here enough is enough I am done being your stepping stone I Quit my job I quit paying taxes and I going to quit buying walmart too. have a nice day I am voting for the guy who has High Hopes and acts like an ant who wants to move that rubber tree planet. the one thing i want to remind us ITS IN OUR HANDS WITHOUT US THEY GOT NOTHING BUT TALK WE ARE THE ACTION

    April 2, 2008 at 4:48 pm |
  118. R. Lopez in South TX

    I am cynical about our current president and I am cynical about a former president's wife pulling a "slick Willie" of some sort. Those are people not representative of our entire country. America's future I am not cynical about and that is why I am voting for Barack Obama.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:48 pm |
  119. mike, co

    its pretty much the incompetence out of washington for the past 8 years.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:49 pm |
  120. Cy Brown

    McCain is absolutely correct. Not only are Americans cynical, those that are voting for Obama are idiots! The man has absolutely no business running for president–no experience, shady past business dealings, questionable loyalties. Americans need to wake up from sleepwalking!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:49 pm |
  121. Thomas

    Let's have a little straight talk my friend and see if John McCain can listen without his temper flaring. American's ARE cynical because we DON'T accept our governments standard of morality and honesty. We are distrustful and pessimistic of the actions it has taken that has lead us to an unjustified war, inflation, recession, illegal immigrants invading our land, invasion of privacy, admitted torture of prisoner's of war, and basically the selling out of the United States. Yes, calling Americans cynical will hurt John McCain, because it's the truth, he recognizes it, yet fails to listen and wishes to continue on the the present administration's policies that have lead Americans to be cynical. We don't want to be cynical, however it's people like McCain that lead us in that direction. If he continues in this direction, it eventually will lead to where he will be calling Americans rebellious.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:49 pm |
  122. Bill, Albuquerque, NM

    What do you mean "helpful." Saying we're cynical has nothing to do with being "helpful" or not. McCain can say what he wants. We'll decide in November whether or not we agree with his assessment.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:49 pm |
  123. W.Art

    How about one change....not voting him for President. He forgot, he, too, live in America.

    That's the problem with these politicians, they think they are above the american people. Sure we have some responsibilities of our own, but so have they.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  124. Dan, Maryland

    Sorry I'm not a war hero Senator McCain, I wish I could measure up to your standards. I am very proud of my country, I just have no confidence in the current leadership.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  125. GJ - AZ

    The American public has been lied to, cheated on and stole from since I started voting and I served our country in the Vietnam Era. Yeah I believe I'm just a "little cynical" with the state of our country; well whats left of it anyway. Corporations moving jobs overseas, major US Companies being bought up by other counties, the US Dollar not being worth the paper it's printed on. Maybe if our elected officals actually had the best interests of the American Public in mind instead of themselves or their special interest groups things could be made better; but I'm not going to hold my breath waiting for it to happen.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  126. Edgar Redding II

    FIrst off I am not a McCain fan, but here I agree with him. We find time to complain about everything instead of going out and trying to fix it. He is absolutely right. The government is as good as the people it is suppose to serve, if we investigate issues and sotp relying on everyone else we will become a stronger nation.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  127. Richard, Montclair, NJ

    Can someone tell me what this candidate stands for? Bush 3?
    Get real McCain. Cynical? I am furious. I work very HARD. I want to spend my hard earned $s to keep the economy strong not have my TAXES bail out Bear Stearns and fund a LOST WAR. I AM VERY PATRIOTIC. I AM VERY PROUD TO BE A CITIZEN OF THE UNITED STATES. cynical? YOU BETTER BELIEVE IT.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  128. Kate

    yes americans are cynical and we have every right to be. We have been lied to about the Iraq war, the invasion of Afghanistan, Oil CEO's raking in $123Billion dollars in profits (gas prices up to $3.20 /4.00 for diesel) High price of heating our homes, high price of food, clothing etc. Homes under foreclosure – name calling and in fight of the Democrats – Wake up John McCain, AMERICANS ARE SICK OF YOU POLITICIANS –paying lip service to the general population of America.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  129. Ryan


    This may not be something we like to hear, but he may be right. I prefer this straight talk to the usual political runaround.

    Ryan, Lubbock

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  130. Pam from Long Beach, California

    Cynical? How could we NOT be cynical! Is he kidding? Shows how completely blind the repubs are about, well, everything. Lets' see...weapons of mass destruction, illegal spying on Americans, oil company cohorts of Bush amassing billions of dollars at OUR expense, outing a CIA agent and on and on and on. Yep, we're cynical because otherwise we'd just be STUPID. Give me a break, Mr. 100 years in Iraq. Geeezzzz

    April 2, 2008 at 4:50 pm |
  131. Pat in MIchigan

    He's right Jack, Americans should and will make this a better place after they elect Barack Obama........It's gonna be hard for McCain to use the "hope" and "change" routines when all he has offered so far is more of the same.........are we cynical? who really wants to know???

    April 2, 2008 at 4:51 pm |
  132. norb

    Maybe somebody should tell John that having Joe Lieberman at his side for every photo opp isn't helping him with the consevative base.
    He needs to come back to Michigan and tell the autoworker's that their jobs arent' coming back. Maybe when he looses the election come this November he can give some of those unemployed autoworker's a job driving one of his wifes beer trucks!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:51 pm |
  133. Sharon, Indiana

    I understand what Senator McCain is speaking about. Right now the American people are cynical about their government and the media. Both are failing the American people miserably.

    Senator McCain just wants to encourage people to take action. There is no benefit to complaining all the time. It is now time to take action and take control back of both our government and the media. People need to speak out and do what they can to improve how this country is run.

    I have the greatest respect for the American people, and I'm sure in the end, they'll do the right thing. I also realize there are still good people within our government, who with a little help from the American people will be able to put us on the right track.

    I also have a great deal of respect for Senator McCain. I'm sure he has his flaws, as every person does, but he has served his country well.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  134. Stephen Smith

    McCain finished 5th from the bottom at Annapolis. I'm sure his admiral father and grandfather scored much better! Maybe they were a lot smarter than the offspring. Nuff said

    April 2, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  135. Kevin

    Cynacil!! Why would McBush in trying to gain constituents criticize our attitude towards a flawed government? Then again the American people are not used to a candidates cynical statement that is brutally honest. Isn't this the pot calling the kettle black?. I think McCain just put a banana in his own campaign's tail pipe.

    Warren, MI

    April 2, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  136. robert burke

    you told everybody how obama won texas but you failed to tell them that clinton won the primary and the cacus by over 100,000 total votes. this just shows how stupid the system is get more vote get less delegates.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  137. Jason - Pittsburgh, PA

    I don't think it's helpful because those most likely to fit the "cynical" label are moderate and independent voters who don't feel like the two parties represent their interests well - so basically, he's calling out the very people whose support he's going to need most if he wants to win in November. Good luck with that.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:52 pm |
  138. Leah Rosenthal

    Why yes, of course, *that's* the problem with our country...that we are now Cynics, not everything that *caused* us to be Cynics over the past few years. What was I thinking?

    Hint: That was sarcasm, not cynicism.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  139. Joe N

    McCain's remarks are insulting to the citizens of this country. He, like our current president, is the only one that knows what's right. Disagree with him and you are not only wrong, but also unpatriotic. McCain's sacrifices for this country should be recognized, but he is far from being the only one that's made sacrifices and unlike McCain, many continue to do so.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  140. ed

    Yes... we are cynical per the observations McCain accurately stated. What do you think he should do....lie? Sounds like an honest assessment. BTW, McCain isnt like ANY politician in Washington....he has ZERO "pork barrel" projects. Talk about fiscally responsible to the US taxpayer!!!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  141. Ramesh

    It is helpful? Probably not, because people in general are touchy about any criticism, whether deserved or otherwise. But do I admire him for candidly saying what he believes in instead of saying what he thinks the public wants to hear? Definitely.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:53 pm |
  142. Lynne

    Cynical? Could it be because of all of our jobs have been outsourced, the fuel prices have skyrocketed, what jobs we do have left are going to people outside the United States coming over on work visa's, the price of groceries have skyrocketed, the candidates running for office are bickering continuously? Cynical? What makes him think that?
    I will be voting for him though, as of today he is most definitely the best candidate. Obama should never have ran. We need someone who loves this country and will not stand and let anyone condemn it the way his preacher did. Maybe McCain should talk to Obama. God Bless America!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  143. Daniel Rodriguez

    No it isn't helpful to McCain to characterize the American public as cynical because it's not true. Americans are not cynical about America, they are cynical about a Presidential candidate who pledges we might be Iraq another 100 years. They are cynical about a Presidential candidate that supports Bush's failed foreign policy. They are cynical about a Presidential candidate who hasn't learned a lesson from his own experiences of torment in war. Americans are not cynical about their country, they are cynical about you John McCain.

    Miami, FL

    April 2, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  144. Brent

    This once again shows how out of touch with reality McCain is. Its like his views on the surge in Iraq that are leading to "victory" . Let me tell you, i've spent the day watching the hearings in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and from former Generals to foreign policy experts there was nothing to take from any statement made today that anything is getting better or will get better any time soon.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  145. RF Xaver

    It's certainly not going to help him or his campaign, but he's got a point. McCain is right, and there is no better reason to vote Obama.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  146. Mary Asheville NC

    Who cares what McCain says! He missed "the boat" when he teamed up with GW Bush.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  147. Jason Sorel

    Under the Bush administration, if your not cynical then you should be, Jack?

    J. Sorel, VA

    April 2, 2008 at 4:54 pm |
  148. John (Iowa City)

    It may not be good for his campaign, but it is certainly true. People upset with the politics of our government either ignore the process completly or turn to professional cynics like Jon Stewert and Stephen Colbert, but they don't try to change anything. Say what you will about McCain, but he calls it like he sees it far more than any other candidate we've seen in a long time.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm |
  149. TLove

    Americans are cynical, but not about their country. Most Americans love this country. But, the cynicism comes from the ineptness of the Bush Administration and their attitude towards the public. In fact, this administration has absolute disdain for how Americans think, what they need and their view on domestic and international issues. Americans are not stupid people at all. We may come from different backgrounds, but we are no way stupid. The Bush Administration relationship with the rest of the world has caused considerable damage to our country. Unfortunately, people are sometimes stereotyped because of the type of leader that we have. What needs to happen next is for Americans to disconnect from this war mongering, anti-American government and let's move on to an administration that recognizes that the way we survive in this world is by being inclusive. War should only be a final step not a solution to resolving a conflict that could have otherwise been resolved by more peaceful means. American people need help and they need a president hears their cries.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm |
  150. Michelle - Houston

    I don't know how much a biography tour will convince the American people to vote for McCain. I don't really care about the fact that his father and grandfather served in the war or that McCain was a POW. My question is, "what are you capable of doing for our country right now?" We are in a never ending war, on the brink of (if not already in) a recession, cost of living is out of control, and don't even mention gas prices. Cynicism is about right.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm |
  151. Alex B.

    No, I don't see McCain's comments as helpful. Does telling a person what they are doing badly or incorrectly encourage that person to vote for you? This doesn't seem like a very effective way of persuading voters.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:55 pm |
  152. J. Poindexter, SC

    I don't understand why it has become wrong and "immoral" to question how the country is being run and how the decisions our leaders are making are affecting our lives. If the colonists had just sat back and let the King of England run the country however he wanted, there would have been no Declaration of Independence, American Revolution or United States. Cynical? You bet I'm cynical, and I hope the country is better for it.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:56 pm |
  153. John T. Dietrich

    McCain is correct. Inflation under Bill Clinton for 8 years was 2.6%. under Bush it is 2.7%. Unemployment under Bush was just as good – if not better – than 8 years with Clinton. People need to take personal responsibility and stop blaming the government. Gas is not a US problem, it's a worldwide problem. Do you think Canada has $1 per gallon gas prices? Hell no, they don't. McCain is correct – there is tremendous opportunity in this country. It's not a pathetic country with a collapsing economy. We been through much worse then this crap, and we will get through this slow down as well. Stop complaining and pull your weight. Electing Barrack Hussein Obama doesn't mean you go from working 3 jobs to 1 job. What the hell will he do to end 3 job for people? Give me a break. McCain, you have a GREAT chance for president!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:56 pm |
  154. Dennis Yuen

    Many Americans might be cynical, but McCain should not be bringing it up, for doing so would just make the country even more cynical; what would the Republicans think if even their own Presidential candidate thinks their country is cynical?

    Dennis, Vancouver Canada

    April 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  155. Herbert Walker

    I'd ask McCain what he means by "cynical". Back in 2002, people who claimed the Bush administration had foreknowledge of 9/11 and failed to act would have been called "cynical."

    Now, thanks to Attorney General Mukasey, we know that the Bush Administration knew of a terrorist phone call from Afghanistan into the U.S., pre-9/11, and they didn't use the FISA powers which existed then to bug the call.

    So what WAS cynicism turns out to be reality!!

    I feel that what he calls "cynicism" today is likewise a fact-based view of the world.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  156. Bob

    When he says "some", I think he is right. But the percentage isn't as high as the cynics would like you to think. The cynics don't like America because they think America should act as only they want it to act. In the end, the cynics are all about power. It is a shame because they soil what has given them the opportunity to flourish.
    God Bless America – give the cynics free air fare to France !

    April 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm |

    Americans aren't cynical about our country. We are cynical about our leadership. Bush has put us through the ringer. He doesn't know the price of gas and when Chaney was told about Americans wanting to end the war, his response was so, like Howard Dean said let them eat cake. John Mccain seems to have the same mentallity, although he cleanned up his remarks about the housing crisis (for the good of his campaign) I believe he told us what kind of president he would be and that's too much like Bush for me.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  158. Lee

    Thanks, after hearing from all these fools.....I will be sure to vote for John McCain!

    April 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  159. Gary A. Hengstler

    Of course. It's brilliant. To warp a quote attributed to P. T. Barnum, "There's a cynic born every minute." And given McCain's difficulty with the Christian right, it makes sense he would appeal now to that ever-growing religious group, the Born-Again Cynics.

    Reno Nevada

    April 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  160. beltway bandito


    I say let the campaign do what's right for the campaign and what 's better for the country. Let the Senator speak about out about our cynacicism, and our glutinious ways. Heck let the senator speak his mind about anything, it just makes me more excited to look towards a more positive future with the other guy/girl.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:57 pm |
  161. Sharon

    McCain's policy is "honesty is the best policy." Americans aren't use to hearing or liking the "truth." At least McCain isn't Obama and Hilary who are polishing and refining words to get the vote.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  162. Olu

    If Obama had made the same comment about Americans, people would be all over him for being "the black man who hates his country." How laughabale.

    OBAMA 08

    April 2, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  163. JJ

    It cost the democrats a lot of money to make America this cynical, I hope it pays off for them in the election. After all thats what it is all about.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  164. Christina

    A little cynicism is not a bad thing - it's a way for the people to rein in politicians who don't want us to think for ourselves. If we only hear we live in "the greatest nation on the face of the earth" we'll improve or to grow to become a better nation.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  165. Jason, Brooklyn

    The McCain campaign is just acknowledging the obvious. Let's see- One of America's largest cities fell into the sea, more people are on food stamps than ever before, our manufacturing sector is declining, we're losing lives and treasure in an unwinnable war, and our education system is in shambles. We're cynical but we're truly sad because we love this country so much.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  166. Timothy Shaw

    By cynical, McCain means not credulous enough. That is: unwilling to believe the sort of fabrications and distortions that our government has long depended on to convince us that it's working in our best interests.

    Oh, wait, is that cynical?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:58 pm |
  167. Steve B

    Why not? You've called us that or worse. Why shouldn't Senator McCain especially if it’s true?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  168. Dan from Lansing, MI


    What's to be cynical about, our federal government has done nothing of redeeming value in my life time, I'm in my early thirties, except bank roll Bin Ladan, arm the Iraqis, bail out the airlines, lie in bed with drug dealers (Noreiaga) bail out the S & L's, bail out investment banks (something stinks there), inadequately respond to our largest natural disaster, flush good money after bad in rebuilding Iraq, proposed and implemented NAFTA, allow known law breakers to continue to serve in the Senate, off shore our national defense, did I miss anything...

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  169. Joe Johnson

    "Cynicism is a residue of experience."

    It doesn't look like mccain has as much experience as he touts if he isn't cynical.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  170. Ken

    I become VERY cynical when I hear a candidate suggest that a 100 year occupation of a tiny middle east country is good for America. And as for getting involved in worthwhile causes, how about starting with massive rallies to end this war? Be careful what ya wish for John.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  171. Kyle from Sacramento, CA

    McCain must have selective attention and only focus on intel learned from his GOP race and "Memory Lane" tour. While the Democratic party is swelling with newly registered voters and enthusaism over a change from the current Administration, McCain is still focusing on the past and ignoring the possibilities of the future. It is clear to anyone that his cynical statements are representative of a candidate who can only take the pulse of America and not quicken it.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  172. Bernie Simmons

    Yeah, I'm cynical. When I go vote in November I'll be voting for, whom I perceive to be, the lesser of two evils! I don't foresee myself as having any other choice.

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  173. Rick Dunford

    Yes. Extremely. keep saying it, John.

    Obama 08

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  174. carl caroli venice fl.

    After 7 years of what we've been through with this administration, he has the audacity to challenge the peoples cynicism? Especially when he's being passed the baton by the liar in chief? What could he possibly expect. Open arms?

    April 2, 2008 at 4:59 pm |
  175. GiroGeezer from Calif

    Is this the best this guy can do? Call Americans cynical?
    This past week several long standing problems have reappeared:
    Autism: What is McCain's plan?
    50% High School Dropout rate nationally: What is McCain's plan?
    Truckers strike against diesel cost: What is McCain's plan?
    60% believe we're in recession: What is McCain's plan?

    You want cynicism – Here it is... The best way to get elected to public office is to plan to have no plan and then put spin machine into gear to sell it.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:00 pm |
  176. Dan in NJ

    Sure it's helpful. When you consider McCain's unwavering support for the Iraq War, his admission of ignorance on economic issues, and his lack of a meaningful plan to actually help people get health care, cynicism is about the only thing he has going for him.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:00 pm |
  177. Bill

    From what I can see, Americans are cynical about the lying Bush administration specifically and politicians in general. They are also cynical about sub-prime lenders and gluttonous oil companies. The only people cynical about the founding principals of the country are those right wing extremists who build careers on paring back the separation of church and state, gutting womens' rights and mis-directing billions in public funding to benefit only the wealthy.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:00 pm |
  178. Chris from Rockford

    I'm guessing McCain finally cracked the cover of your [great] book. Of course we're cynical, look at what #43 has done. And not just here, but the world. He has done damage that runs so deep to the US reputation, it will require decades to restore. I could ramble for days as to why we are cynical Jack, but who would listen...the politicians we put and pay to be in office, I think not.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:00 pm |
  179. Casey - Chattanooga, TN

    It's no surprise, really. He takes shots at anyone who doesn't see eye to eye with him so why not turn the whole country against him as well. Oh wait, April Fool's!

    April 2, 2008 at 5:00 pm |
  180. Chas

    I truely believe John McCain is being honest to what he believes. He doesn't realize that those of us that are cynical "in his mind" only appear that way because we feel abandoned by our country. It has been taken over by this big mega-industrial political party that believes, (truely believes) that throwing our countries basic rights down the toilet in the name of corporate profits is good for the country.

    I can't wait for an unscripted debate between McCain and Obama.

    Aug from IA

    April 2, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  181. rick

    I don't know why McCain is considered a hero. He was a POW for goodnes sakes! I have not heard anything from him remotely encouraging about our damaged foreign policy. He is not a diplomat, he can do nothing but get us deeper in conflict throughout the world.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  182. Brian in Laguna Beach

    If I was as uninformed and clueless about the real issues at hand and how to solve them I might be inclined to blame American sentiment as well. No matter, his campaign is the quintessential exercise in futlity, albiet a very expensive one......

    April 2, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  183. Mary Steele Yorktown VA

    He's right. Our representatives have used and abused their authority and it is ruining us in so many ways-our economy is suffering, our future leaders are not getting the education they deserve, we give more to outsiders than we do our own legal citizens, our reputation around the world is in ruins and those that "get it", get slammed for it. Changing your stance to do what the majority of Americans want is not flip-flopping to earn brownie points, Clinton and Obama should learn from it, but both are doing what "they" want, not what they are suppose to do-represent the American people!!!!

    Mary Steele
    Yorktown VA

    April 2, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  184. Marv


    Well, I certainly appreciate McCain's candor and shoot-from-the-hip style. Only problem is, it's an argument against the Republicans and for the Democrats. Should someone remind him what ticket he's running on? He seems to need a lot of reminding lately.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  185. Thomas Edwards

    What planet is this man living on?

    I'm cynical not because I wish to be able to choose among designer coffees, but because of the complete and utter arrogance with which this nation's current leadership responds to people's desire for change. Sadly, McCain seems to be more of the same, especially as it relates to this stupid war we're involved in.

    Talk to some real people for once, McCain, and find out why we're cynical, instead of making lame coffee analogies.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:01 pm |
  186. Peter

    Well, I believe he is partially correct. I think when people are told that they should just go along with what ever decisions the government makes or be called unpatriotic ... or listen to Dick Cheney say he doesn't care what the "people" think, the "people" can become cynical.

    However, McCain isn't going to get any votes by throwing that in our face. He should think about and understand why this is occurring.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:02 pm |
  187. Marianne

    If Americans are cynical about their country, I believe it can only be healthy to the democracy. In the past, we blindly accepted what authority figures told us and didn't challenge them. We'd listen to the political rhetoric in debates, public addresses, and news conferences and take everything on face value. A more informed, cynical public can instead hold the government to the highest of standards. In addition, our naive acceptance of the supremacy of the US has gotten us into a lot of trouble lately. If only Bush were as unconvinced of his own rhetoric as the US public is, we wouldn't now be in a position of spreading the unquestioned "right" of American democracy to sovereign states who deserve to rule themselves as they see fit, for the most part.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:02 pm |
  188. Shelley in NE Florida

    Sounds a bit like John F. Kennedy's famous speech in which he challenged Americans to give back to this wonderful place we call home. Of course, I was propagandized by the movie "Pollyanna" as a child and always try to find the bright side of things. Being a Girl Scout offered me the opportunity to see first hand the positive effects of working together with others on projects that benefit one's local communities. If encouraging others to stop whining and start contributing hurts his campaign, it is truly a sad day for our country.

    My mother taught me this poem years ago. I am sorry that I cannot cite the author.

    There's a destiny that makes us brothers, None goes this way alone, What you put into the lives of others, Comes Back into your own.

    Shelley in Palatka, Florida

    April 2, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  189. Owen Rhodes

    I'm certainly very cynical about my country, its leadership, and its citizenry. I include myself in this. We are, generally speaking, a gluttonous, greedy, self-centered, and self-righteous nation. Of course, pointing it out only makes most people mad, so it likely isn't the best political strategy.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  190. John from Chicago

    Everytime John McCain speaks he disgusts me for jumping into bed with Bush. I will not be voting for him.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  191. Raul

    Sure Americans are cynical about their country. After the last 8 years can we blame them. Thats why this election is so important!

    Dallas, TX

    April 2, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  192. rITA

    I don't know about anybody else, but I AM! Go ahead and call me cynical. Do I care? NO, because I am! We have a right to be. Truthfulness has been little to none.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:03 pm |
  193. VAN MILES

    Liberals need to stop blaming Washington (government) for the poor
    decisions they've made. If many of you make a true assessment of your life, you're in a poor state of mind, body, finances, etc., because of bad decisions. Stop being victims and get a life.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  194. TN

    Up to now, I sitll think McCain a little too old for the job. Being too old, he will stick to what he knows, and not making changes if needed. Being too old, means that you will say what is safe to say, not open to challenge.

    Saying Americans are cynical whether it is true or not, showing he is not playing safe. He says and does what he believes in even though it may not do him good (I don't know if it is true or not).

    I personally think of him better after reading your comment about "cynical comment by McCain".

    I don't know if this is your intention to boost his rating or not by writing this.


    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  195. Allen

    Jack, I don't know if it will help McCain's campaign, but I hope it will help voters decide if it is the country or this particular government that they are cynical about. I also like his comment that if Americans find fault with our country we should make it a better one. Isn't that what this coming election is all about – changing the government to make the country better?
    Hartwell, GA

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  196. j.sells

    Although I think McCain's charge to fellow Americans to fix what's wrong is correct, he's dead wrong about the cynicism. That emotion is specific to McCain's own party. The Democratic candidates are riding a tsunami of hopeful idealism and passion in this presidential campaign, and surely that's the opposite of cynicsm.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  197. Brian - Minneapolis, MN

    He obviously hasn't seen an Obama rally...

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  198. Rayan

    Mr.McCain is an insane old republican who does not know the head or tail of running a government. He talks without thinking and he swallows many words while he speaks. Shame on the republicans who chose him to run for Presidency.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  199. Ellis

    Of course we are cynical when it comes to our government.

    We go to Iraq and find no WMD, this after the infamous "mushroom cloud" speech.
    The former first lady speaks of dodging sniper fire in Bosnia, only to find her on camera smiling with a young girl, not in any particular hurry to leave the "battlefield".
    And Senator Obama, our candidate of hope and the future has a 20 year relationship with a bigot-hate-monger who enthusiastically shouts "G.D. America!"
    They all tell us what we want to hear, and we are just stupid enough for it to work every time. McCain is right, but it sure won't help him win this election.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  200. robert atlanta GA

    Mccain, Mccain, Mccain. ever heard of foot in mouth disease.
    shiites = sunis
    irresponsible borrowers will not be helped
    cynical americans
    against tax cuts = now you are for tax cuts.
    we have a catalog going Mccain , see you in the fall Buddy.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  201. Jeff - Sunnyvale, CA

    It's good that McCain recognizes the fact that Americans are cynical about our current government and society - to ignore it would be foolish - but I don't think it helps anyone for him to lay the blame on us ourselves for taking our liberties for granted.

    Unless, that is, he's referring to the fact that we had taken for granted the notion that our privacy and safety would be protected by the government, rather than destroyed. How silly and naive of us to have entertained such a ridiculous idea!

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  202. gary coleman

    i think he has a point.many people are skeptical about the US policies right now,but the best way is not to be apathetic but to be pro-active one way or another. people can complain all day but in the end,the ones who receive my respect and trust are those that do.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  203. Kate

    I find McCain's comments insulting.

    Wages are depressed, even for well-educated people. Many people are underemployed, and then we read about our passports being produced in Thailand because the technology for the chips is not available here. Ridiculous!

    Military contracts are outsourced overseas. Why shouldn't Americans have those jobs?

    My husband, also an Annapolis grad, served his country, as did his sister, our brother-in-law, and many friends who graduated USNA. Both our fathers were in the military, and my grandfather, an immigrant served (WWI). I also have uncles who served in Europe during WWII.

    So, McCain thinks that if people drink Starbucks then they are not patriotic (I'm a tea drinker myself). Where does this simplistic thinking come from?

    He should be reminded that yes, he served, but he was a legacy at the Academy. He did not get there on his own merits, but because of the privilege he was born into.

    At one time, I thought I would vote for McCain, and now I don't think so. There's something about him that is no longer authentic, and I think he's pandering to a certain base, that he thinks wants to hear that the rest of us are "cynical" and "unpatriotic," and so on.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:04 pm |
  204. Alan

    McCain has a nerve acting like he has won the nomination... it is not over until the Delegates vote at the convention, and Ron Paul has not yet withdrawn. Am I wrong ?

    April 2, 2008 at 5:11 pm |
  205. Richard

    Yes, there is cynicism but it is about Congress, not the country.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:11 pm |
  206. d

    Boy is McCain wrong on this one. The American people are NOT cynical about our country, we are (and have every right) to be cynacal about our Politicians. Our Politicians have NOT been doing their jobs, not for this country, not for "we the people". If they worked for any Company in this land, they would have been fired long ago. Maybe its' time to fire these bozo's.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:15 pm |
  207. Brooks Wilkins

    President Kennedy said "Ask not what your country can do for you but what can you do for your country". Senator McCain seems to be saying the same thing but is just a little less eloquent.Let's get real folks, both men are correct . We need to stop complaining about everything and try to serve others who are less fortunate and are in need.

    Brooks W.N.C.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:15 pm |
  208. LC MN

    We have an arrogant President now which has ticked off the world. I call that being a jerk. Athough I can respect McCain for his years of government service, just as I do everyone else that does the same. We do not need another jerk with an attitude.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:15 pm |
  209. Burt

    Having seen enough voters choose their candidate based upon whether they liked the tie worn in a debate, or their preferred breed of pooch, I reserve my cynicism not for the politicians, but for my countrymen. We've become the model for Plato's republic, proof that in a democracy, the lunatics run the asylum.

    Get the average American higher than a 4th grade reading level and bump their IQ 20 points, then talk to me about democracy.

    Flip a coin for president. It's quicker.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  210. Morgan Night - Santa Monica, CA

    McCain comes from the school of Bush, Cheney and Rove. They try to frame the argument that dissatisfaction equals being unpatriotic. I don't know if they've been paying attention but there's not too much to be proud of these days as an American.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  211. Ray in PA

    That's what I love about McCain – he's mostly unfiltered...
    Is it a bad move politically – probably yes.
    What folks cynical about the country? Jack, haven't you been listening to yourself and Lou Dobbs? If I just listened to CNN, I'd think this country isn't doing anything right – energy policy, poverty, immigration, financial crisises, International relationships, terrorism, Iraq, Iran, North Korea, etc. etc.
    I don't think it started with "W" either. Clinton was critized as well.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  212. Rich

    Everyone complains about this present administration so anything must be better right? So I guess giving an already incompetent govenrment run by an incompetent Congress more money (thus power) is going to solve all our problems. That's what the Democrats promise. They believe government is there to solve everyone's problems. Socialism is on the way and the Democrats are leading the charge. I hope everyone is happy with the change because it has to be better than Bush. Right?

    April 2, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  213. Myles

    John McCain is wrong, some Americans are smart, some are stupid. Although, we cynics aren't going to vote for him anyway. He must be upset that Bill Maher calls him "Grandpa Munster."

    April 2, 2008 at 5:18 pm |
  214. Dale C

    I have to confess I haven't read all of the comments but for my two cents I believe the American people have become cynical about government processes. Look at the campaign so far. We haven't even touched the general election and everyone I speak with is fed up with it already.
    The FDA takes forever to release drugs to the market and when they do the meds are faulty. The FAA tells us our air controllers are meeting the demandsof their jobs but those same controllers tell us their equipment is completely out of date compared to the rest of the world and they are overworked to exhaustion. (But in 2009, by golly, we'll have a hi-def network for our televisions.) Cynical... you can put me in that group.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:18 pm |
  215. David Redmond

    Cynacil? I pay taxes, served my country with honor and never asked anything from my Goverment. If we are it's due to George Bush and his adminstration and the Iraq war.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:23 pm |
  216. Kurt Hunsanger, Sterling Heights MI

    Yes it is a good idea because it forces Americans to look inward and ask themselves if they are one of the materialistic cynics. We all know there's no hiding the truth about yourself, from yourself.

    It's then where we realize that if our personal actions have contributed to shaping the liberites of this nation, we are part of the solution. Contrarily, if we realize that our individual concept of what makes America great is dictated by our cars or clothes, then we obviously have no one to blame but ourselves for being so unhappy.

    Either way, are you really willing to argue with a former POW about why America is the greatest place on Earth? Not me........

    April 2, 2008 at 5:28 pm |
  217. Wendy Talarico

    Jack, I think we have proven over and over this country can pull together when we have mutual goal (9/11, Katrina, War, etc..) However, our government does not lead by example or follow up what they say they will do for us. Personal example, I am 40 year old, female,Gulf War Vet, my medical records state "adult circumsized male, etc..." Two years later still trying to get this and other issues correted... Who's cynical???

    April 2, 2008 at 5:28 pm |
  218. terrence donovan

    Of course I'm cynical. Whether he calls me it or not, does it really matter. If your not cynical about the future of this country you must be blind.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:29 pm |
  219. Susan Zito


    We're not cynical about our country; we're cynical about our politicians, after having lied to for the past 7 years....WMD, spreading democracy abroad (while attempting to curtail ours at home), the surge, the environment, global warming, the economy, incompetent appointments, hurricane katrina, tax cuts for the wealthy, the educational system mess, healthcare, electronic voting machines providing no paper trail, oil companies outrageous profits, corrupt elected officials, not providing properly for our brave soldiers,deployments extended, reassignments to Iraq for 2,3, 4 tours of duty, lobbyists writing laws, and a Vice President who says, "So what." We're not cynical, we're realists.

    April 2, 2008 at 5:32 pm |
  220. Rose Jarbeck

    Why is the news channels all for Barack Obama, anything about Hillary is all over the channels, for days we heard how Barack did not vote for the war in Irac but he wasn't able to vote.
    He voted for the Oil co. to have tax incentives and only MSNBC told about this "one time"

    April 2, 2008 at 5:33 pm |
  221. Teena H

    I doubt the comment will help his campaign – although I don't think he's too far off the mark with his assessment.

    McCain's run for president is an uphill battle and one I seriously doubt he can win – he has several things working against him: He's an older, white, male, republican that is endorsed by Bush.

    Guess that sounds pretty cynical.

    Niceville, Florida

    April 2, 2008 at 5:35 pm |
  222. Matt Hoffman

    McCain’s comments are great! Those who don’t like things about our country should stop complaining and start doing. That’s something McCain is a shining example of.

    Matt Hoffman
    Boston, MA

    April 2, 2008 at 5:41 pm |