Campaigning in Jacksonville, Florida, on Monday, September 15, the very day of Lehman’s demise, McCain started rambling about unemployment. He noted that Americans were struggling but added fatefully, “The fundamentals of our economy are strong.” Afterward he claimed to have been quoted out of context, but coming only weeks after his top economic advisor said the country was filled with “whiners” suffering merely a “mental depression,” it hurt him badly. When he heard the news of McCain’s remarks, David Plouffe, Obama’s normally phlegmatic campaign manager, shouted, “No fucking way!” McCain was a modern-day Edward John Smith, captain of the Titanic. He’d hit an iceberg and didn’t know it.

Jonathan Alter (2010) – The Promise. President Obama, Year One. (s. 3-4).