It’s been less than a week since president-elect Barack Obama triumphed, and already the conservatives are rewriting the history of this year’s election.

Take syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer, who’s a little to the right of, oh, Franco.

According to his column, dutifully printed in yesterday’s Tribune, it was the decline of Lehman Brothers, announced to the world on September 15, that triggered the collapse of Senator John McCain’s presidential campaign.

“In the excitement and decisiveness of Barack Obama’s victory, we forget that in the first weeks of September, John McCain was actually ahead. Then Lehman collapsed and the financing system went off a cliff.”

Well, not really. According to polls tracked by Real Clear Politics, McCain was slightly up in the national polls for a relatively brief period in the early days of September, no doubt due to his postconvention bounce.

But by September 11 — four days before Lehman’s demise — Obama had already regained a narrow lead.

No doubt the financial meltdown contributed to Obama’s success. But there were other factors as well — not the least of which was McCain’s bizarre reaction to the meltdown, and the utter vacuity of Governor Sarah Palin, his vice presidential running mate, who god help us all, is already talking about running for president in 2012.