McCain staffer jokes senator invented BlackBerry

Can't we move past a decade-old joke?

Published September 16, 2008 5:44PM (EDT)

Are we still telling the same stupid joke that's been floating around Silicon Valley and Beltway circles for nearly a decade? Seriously? In 1999, Al Gore said he invented the Internet. Ha ha.

Of course, that never happened. OK, everyone repeat after me: Al Gore did not invent the Internet. Nor did he ever claim to.

Earlier today, a top McCain policy advisor, Douglas Holtz-Eakin told a group of reporters that the distinguished senator from Arizona had a hand in the BlackBerry: "You're looking at the miracle that John McCain helped create."

Later in the morning, however, the Associated Press corrected its account of the episode, dismissing it as a "bone-headed joke", and added:

Senior McCain aide Matt McDonald said that the senator "laughed" when he heard the comment about the BlackBerry.

Before the correction, Politico was eager to point out that McCain has ribbed Gore in the past for that Internet remark as well. Zing! It was a dumb joke then, it's a dumb joke now. Political reporters, is this really worth our time?

It's clear that McCain has less technological savvy than my 87-year-old grandparents, who are constantly sending me the latest anti-Palin e-mail forwards that I don't really want. (I love you, Grammy!) He's admitted that he's "never felt the need to email." (Perhaps we now know why.) Heck, his Twitter account hasn't been used a single time. We get it.

People, Gore didn't invent the Internet. McCain didn't invent the BlackBerry. Nor did the U.S. government invent the iPod, despite claims two years ago by our president.

Can we move on to some real political discussion now? Thanks.

By Cyrus Farivar

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