Josh Marshall over at TPM has linked to this fascinating Washington Post story about Thursday's get together at the White House. In short, it appears that Barack Obama and the Democratic leadership came loaded for bear and John McCain wasn't ready for anything other than a photo op.
The story confirms what many people, save hard core Republicans, suspected from the moment that McCain announced his campaign suspension and intention to go to Washington and fix the financial crisis: it was all a political ploy to get Sarah Palin off the front page and halt Obama's surge in national polling. McCain contributed nothing to the bailout negotiations. He agrees philosophically with Wall Street welfare but it smart enough to know that he has to appear to be on the side of the little guy.
The senator from Arizona has pandered to Main Street for years, always safe in knowing the national press would never bring up his pro-corporate record or the Keating Five. He is facing a skeptical press corps for the first time in nearly 20 years and has no fucking idea what to do about it.
Say whatever you want about Obama, at least he does his homework and had the balls to admit that he believed the bailout to be necessary no matter how it plays on Main Street. He showed no fear Friday night because, as the linked story above will illustrate, he has nothing to fear from his opponent.