Targeting McCain

Josh Marshall is worried that the Democrats aren't attacking enough:

My concern isn't so much about Night 1, it's my perception that the Obama campaign has ceded the initiative to McCain for the last four to six weeks, and that Obama's campaign needs to get to work tearing down McCain's concocted Mavericky, old soldier image...Attack is not synonymous with primal scream.

It doesn't mean frothing at the mouth screaming. In fact, the best attacks undermine with ridicule and humor. But being on the attack means taking the fight to the opponent, making him or her respond -- in so many words, taking and holding the initiative. In the context of a political campaign that means not responding to attacks but taking and holding the initiative by defining both your opponent and the question at the heart of the campaign Of course, attack can mean slashing attacks on the opponent's character too. But that's only one approach -- and not the one everyone, especially the presidential candidate himself, should take.