11/16/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, there he goes again.

On at least two occasions during last night's debate, John McCain disparaged Barack Obama's eloquence ("Well, you know, I admire so much Sen. Obama's eloquence" and later, "Just again, the example of the eloquence of Sen. Obama").

No, in this time of crisis, we wouldn't want a president who is articulate, coherent or, dare we say, eloquent.

Instead, let's keep muddling through with the same mangled syntax and incoherent thinking of the past eight years (the standard-setter, of course, being President Bush's laughable query: "Is our children learning?").

NY Times columnist David Brooks, as he often does, nailed it here last week:

"Once conservatives admired Churchill and Lincoln above all -- men from wildly different backgrounds who prepared for leadership through constant reading, historical understanding and sophisticated thinking. Now those attributes bow down before the common touch.

"And so, politically, the G.O.P. is squeezed at both ends. The party is losing the working class by sins of omission -- because it has not developed policies to address economic anxiety. It has lost the educated class by sins of commission -- by telling members of that class to go away."

Eloquence has now become the GOP's newest four-letter word...and this from the party of Lincoln, our most eloquent president. Amazing....

Remember this from his second inaugural?

"The dogmas of the quiet past are inadequate to the stormy present. The occasion is piled high with difficulty, and we must rise with the occasion. As our case is new, so we must think anew, and act anew. We must disenthrall ourselves, and then we shall save our country."

It's that time ... again.