February 4, 2008

The Conservative No McCain Zone: Big Arguments for a Bad Idea

Some years ago I recall leafing through a slight volume of the collected sayings of New York City taxi drivers. One that stuck in my mind was that of a Bengali driver who observed, "Bicycle messengers, they thirst for death."

Watching the blistering salvos fired against a McCain ascendency throughout the net in the past week has put me in mind of that observation, only applied to the incondite arguments of recondite Republicans:

REPUBLICANSTHIRST.jpg

The gist of the Republican argument against McCain seems to be that he is not pure enough for many conservatives. I submit that that is precisely the point. The pure products of extreme ideology don't win elections in this country. The pure products of ideology start, well, civil wars.

NeoNeoCon has a long exegesis on this bizarre phenomenon at Conservatives jump the shark: party purity über alles where she states the obvious:

Candidates don't win by ideological purity. That's a delusion to which the extreme wings of both parties are subject.

But it turns out that for some, it's not even about winning. It's about party purification, about who owns the soul of the Republican Party.

It reminds me of the Biblical wandering in the desert. Forty years of that, and the Jews were ready to enter the Promised Land.

If you'd like a crash course in the current extreme Republican insanity, you might take a brief tour through the comments to that post above. Most illuminating when it comes to understanding that not all moonbats inhabit the cave on the left.

Does all this spuming and carping about McCain bode ill for his candidacy? I like to think not. I like to think that what we are seeing in the last week is simply the froth that always rises to the top of a hot cup of blather on the Internet.

Still, it is instructive to follow the heft of the arguments that shore up the ruins of the Republican party. These seem mostly to stem from McCain's real or imagined positions on "The Big 3 Issues" -- abortion, immigration, homosexuality -- plus -- just for fun -- some sort of running around outside his marriage a decade or more back. The latter is often thrown in because it just wouldn't be politics as usual without some mud in the mix.

Why the blow-up on the Right. It's not really about McCain. The conservative rage to my mind is powered not by the actual prospect of McCain candidacy itself. The looming reality of McCain's nomination brings a deeper failure into focus. That knowledge is powered by the unconscious awareness that, on "The Big 3 Issues", the culture war is over. And the conservatives have lost. Reaction? Consume your own.

Here's the news on "The Big 3 Issues:"

Abortion: Alas, this is a done deal. There will not come a time in the foreseeable future when abortion on demand will not be available in the United States. The best that can be hoped for at this point is a widespread understanding among the populace that abortion, though perfectly legal, is morally wrong except in certain, widely understood, circumstances. (And, no, I'm not going to spell those circumstances out -- that's up to you. Work it out with yourself, your family and your friends.)

The law and public morality are not coterminous, nor should they be. When they are the result is dhimmitude. Not really the state one is seeking, correct?

Homosexuality and gay marriage: This too is a done deal. To paraphrase Gay Rights activists from years ago, "They're here. They're queer. Get used to it."

Democracy, at the bottom, runs on a simple axiom: "Everybody's in. Nobody's out;" although these days you might want to cast the last part as 'Everybody's out.' If people want to enter into a state of marriage, that's up to them, not the state. The official recognition of gay people's right to be married or not married is merely generational. It will roll forward, couple by couple, state by state. As the poet says,

The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all your Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it.

-- Omar Khayyam

Indeed, rather than resist the desire of gay Americans to marry, it seems to me that insecure straights who for some reason have it in for gays should welcome their entrance into the twisted state that secular marriage has become. After all, it is a staple of comedy that straight marriage brings not bliss but woe and regret and the death of romantic love. Think of the decades of rich comedy material gay marriage will bring all Americans. Think positive. Think -- "Gay Divorce Court." Ratings to the moon, Alice. To the moon!

Reversing Illegal Immigration: Done deal #3. I know that, like visions of sugarplums, visions of some sort of "fence" protecting America from the hordes of marching Mexicans dance in the heads of Americans who just want them all to turn around and march back. But, alas, that too joins the previous two issues in the category, "It Ain't Gonna Happen."

I know, believe me, all the designs for a kinder and gentler fence that will have hi-tech detectors and some sort of ready interdiction corps sitting on helicopter scramble pads across the southern border. I know all the arguments for expanding the ever-so-effective techniques used to stop the flow of illegal drugs to stop the flow of illegal aliens. None of these will prove any more effective than "The War on Some Drugs" we've be squandering billions on over the decades.

What would work would be some sort of East German wall 1,969 miles long. This monstrosity would have guard towers, mine fields, attack Dobermans, armored cars, and about 100,000 armed border guards with a shoot on sight policy (3 shifts of 17 guards per mile). After around 500 Mexican civilians were shot dead, this might have some effect on reducing the flow. I'm not quite ready for this draconian a solution. Are you?

Then there is the extended policy of finding those illegals here and, well, just deporting them. Another 25-watt idea.

Okay, let's follow that one home with the vision of hundreds of buses chock full of thousands of illegals (rounded up in armed swoops through the US barrios) departing daily for Tijuana and all points south. The first problem is finding and then imprisoning the illegals. That would mean raids into homes and apartment buildings around the country as well as stop and frisk identity checks on the street for "looking Mexican." Then you'll have to refurbish those Japanese internment camps in the Owens valley and elsewhere as holding pens. Think the Manzanar Concentration Camp to the 10th power on the outskirts of every major city. You start opening those up and armed Mexicans are going to be the least of your problems.

Which brings up the small problem of resistance since male members of La Raza are not known for their submissiveness. No, not all of these armed roundups would be met with a tug of the forelock submission. And it is best to remember that this America is, first and foremost, a heavily armed country -- especially in the barrios. Are you ready for gun fights across the US? I'm not sure I am. But that's what we'd get since many illegals, faced with internment and deportation on a mass scale, would not go quietly.

Next, let's suppose that, after countless "regrettable" deaths (Each one of which is given the full "Pobre Maria Treatment" on NPR and in the New York Times. Yes, your head will explode.), that after these deaths hundreds of thousands of Mexicans did indeed show up at the border in surplus Greyhound buses. (Don't kid yourself, we're going to need a lot of buses.) What if Mexico decided, "Hey, we don't recognize any of these people as ours, and just what do you mean 'looks' Mexican?"

Are we then going to use the armed forces to force Mexico to take back their huddled masses? And even if they did, do we really want a country as corrupt and unstable as Mexico to become even more unstable? If you want to see a wall come up on the southern border overnight, just wait until a full-scale revolution breaks out in Mexico. Think "American Civil War" X 2 with automatic weapons and plastique explosives. If one side wins you get Nazi Germany to the south. If the other side wins you get Communist China during "The Great Leap Forward." Neither is what you'd call a "desirable outcome." Either will make you wish for the status quo ante when decent yard work and fine tacos everywhere were a staple of American life.

For these reasons and many more, the concept that a McCain candidacy and presidency would be "unacceptable" to Republicans and Americans is, in the land of realpolitik, simply delusional. When you want "everything" out of a president, you get "nothing." Huckabee is not the answer since he's too evangelical for the middle. Romney is not the answer since, well, the middle feel -- no matter what you say about it -- there's something too weird about being a Mormon. McCain's not only the best shot at the middle, he's really -- when you come down to it -- all the Republicans have in their quiver. And in politics, you don't beat somebody with policies and purity. You gotta beat somebody with somebody.

This, of course, will neither still nor stifle the true believers among conservatives. Like the sorely afflicted BDS democrats who have yet to get over the fact that Al Gore lost the election of 2000 fair and square, so there will always be those MDS conservatives among us who have not gotten over the fact Goldwater was skunked by Johnson in 1964. History has no lessons to teach the true believer.

Many of these mossbacks seem to feel that four more years of the Clintons or the first four years of Obama will be a small price to pay for ideological purity.These folks simply will not see that, as the TV infomercials say, "AND... it doesn't STOP there!" I know I am shoveling seaweed against the tide here, but I would ask those people, for but a brief moment, to consider these two potential line-ups:

Clinton/Obama 2008
or
Obama/Clinton 2008

This is, for so many reasons, the Democrat dream ticket and the pure Conservative's worst nightmare. Not the least because it means, at the outside, the potential of 16 years of a Democrat with a big socialist jones in the Whitehouse. Let's spell that out: S I X T E E N - Y E A R S.

Give one party sixteen years in power and you could, dare I say, appoint every single justice of the Supreme Court. Especially if you've got congress on your side.

"Not voting" to register a protest is also, in this case, not an option. A "not vote" counts as two against you; the vote you did not cast and the vote you did not cancel.

So, what the Republicans have to ask themselves before signing off on the No-McCain purity test is, "Do you feel lucky? Well, punks, do you?"

Posted by Vanderleun at February 4, 2008 10:34 AM | TrackBack
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Well written and some very good points made. It also seems to me that the hatred for Mcain is going to drive some conservatives to not vote and that is unfortunate.

Posted by: Lance at February 4, 2008 11:45 AM

Besides, if McCain as President is anything like the way he was as a history prof, he should be fun to watch.

Posted by: Gagdad Bob at February 4, 2008 12:06 PM

Thank you, Lance. You must have read that while I was still revising.

And yes, not voting will be a path for some. That worked well in 2006, didn't it?

Posted by: vanderleun at February 4, 2008 12:18 PM

McCain can't win. He is too old and will not be able to withstand the MSM/DNC fire that will be directed against him from the moment the GOP convention anoints him. Worse, some of the base thinks 4 years of grid lock is better than McCain getting his way. They will sit out the election or vote Democrat for President, GOP for everything else.

McCain has virtually no executive experience. The one thing that Giuliano and Romney have going for them, compared to Hillary/Obama, is executive experience. Going with McCain throws away that not inconsiderable advantage.

Giuliano and Romney have also won office in the heart of Democratic territory. McCain has never done that.

Remember how well Bob Dole did in 1996? That is what will happen to McCain if he gets the nomination. So, all you McCain boosters - why are you so keen to select a sure-fire loser?

Posted by: Pat at February 4, 2008 1:29 PM

While I accept the notion that McCain is better than bitter death itself, I'm not sure why the pro-immigration-control position need be portrayed so indecently. The most vigorous position I've seen seriously proposed is enforcing existing employment law, and allowing attrition to occur naturally.

Whence ariseth the "mow-em down!" strawman?

Posted by: buzz harsher at February 4, 2008 1:33 PM

Vanderleun:

McCain is more liberal than Romney is the following ways:

1. McCain supported amnesty for illegal aliens. Romney does not. Romney wants to enforce our borders first.

2. McCain was a sponsor of McCain-Feingold - which took away a big chunk of our First Amendment rights. You cannot form a group to go n TV and say anything bad about an incumbent Congressman 60 days before an election. I’m not sure they even have that harsh a restriction in Russia. This takes McCain past liberal to out-an-out communist/socialist control of media. This should scare people of all parties. (This is one of the reasons why, e.g., many people would not vote for McCain under any circumstances). If a politician sell your First Amendment rights down the river, you - as a blogger, for Pete’s sake - ought to be offended. If you’re not, then I guess McCain can just do what he wants and you can revel in his biography - because issues apparently don’t matter any more.

3. On flip-flops. McCain has flip flopped on illegal immigration and Bush's tax cuts. But the liberal media love him, so they don't call him on it.

4. McCain supports the McCain-Kennedy bill that would raise the gas tax on everyone in the country by 50 cents. Romney opposes this.

5. McCain opposed Bush’s tax cuts as “tax cuts for the wealthy” - right out of the Ted Kennedy, moveon.org playbook. Romney supported Bush’s tax cuts.

6. McCain said Sam Alito is too conservative for a Supreme Court Justice. Romney supports Alito as a good conservative Judge. (And McCain would only appoint liberal judges anyway - as they are the only ones who would uphold McCain-Feingold - see, e.g., John Paul Steven’s decision in the McConnell case on McCain-Feingold).

7. McCain is simply unhinged - he screams and yell at his colleagues. It is fair to ask if he is stable enough to be in the Oval Office.

8. The only issue McCain is good on - the war in Iraq - is an issue on which Romney is also good. Both support the war in Iraq and staying until the job is done.

9. McCain lied about Romney’s stance on the war in Iraq during the Florida primary. McCain said that Romney is for a timetable for withdrawal, when he is not. The fact that McCain is such a blatant, casual liar should concern you. If it doesn’t, you should ask yourself why.

10. McCain was one of the Keating Five. His holier-than-thou attitude is a sham. He took money to influence his vote. He is corrupt. The fact that he spent the rest of his political career to enact McCain-Feingold is even worse. He sold all our First Amendment rights down the river to give him a little political cover for his corrupt past. This is despicable. We should not reward such a person with our vote. We should say he is cynical and despicable for using a law damaging our First Amendment as his own political fig leaf.

11. McCain has never had a job in the private sector. He’s never had to make a payroll. I honor his service in the military and his bravery in captivity in Vietnam. But he’s not running for Chairman of the Joint Chiefs - his lack of knowledge of the private economy is pretty much total.

12. John McCain has never run a large organization of any kind. The Presidency should not be on-the-job training for executive experience. Romney has successfully run several large organizations like the Winter Olympics, served as Governor of Massachusetts, and built the successful business Bain Capital from the ground up. If we are conservative Republicans, we ought to like people who excel in the free market system.

13. Romney made his money the old-fashioned way: he earned it. McCain married his money (Cindy McCain owns the largest Budweiser distributorship in Arizona). This is why McCain has disdain for the capitalist, free market system. He doesn’t know how it works and so he views it with suspicion. This is a good position for a career, liberal, Democrat politician - like an Obama or Hillary - but not for a Republican standard-bearer.

And that’s the short list.

Romney is the only conservative in the GOP primary. Please vote for him so we don’t have a choice between a liberal and a liberal in the general election.

Go tell your friends. Take your vote seriously. Don’t surrender to the liberals just because “everyone else is doing it.”

-nikita demosthenes

Posted by: nikita demostheens at February 4, 2008 1:33 PM

I concur with this in its entirety. Will the disaffected listen? Time will tell.

Posted by: capital L at February 4, 2008 1:35 PM

"done deal,can't be changed"

Well,your a little ray of sunshine,aren't you?

You've just given me lot's of reasons to not bother voting.

What's your campaign slogan,"vote Republican,it's futile"?

As for the "purity" strawman,I'd just like a GOP candidate,say,a little to the right Joe Lieberman,is that so much to ask?

If your pro:
gay marriage
open borders
amnesty
abortion
etc.

then damn well say so and vote
Democrat,the party that has championed these causes for years,and quit bitching that the GOP isn't far enough left for you.

Posted by: m at February 4, 2008 1:39 PM

I imagine you were probably referring to my comment on neo's post when you said "If you'd like a crash course in the current extreme Republican insanity, you might take a brief tour through the comments to that post above.".

I won't vote for a Democrat for chief executive. McCain's short of being a Democrat by one strike of a typewriter on his I.D. Period.

Another one of the commenter's on neo's thread remarked that (I paraphrase) "You can only vote the lesser of two evils until you realize that there's nothing left but evil."

I am not worried that McCain will actually be elected - far from it. The next president will be Barak Obama, and he will be elected for precisely the same reason that John McCain won't be: the media wants the story to go that way, and packaging McCain as a bitter, erratic, crank will take only slightly more finesse than insinuating that Hillarys! negatives make her (gasp) unelectable.

The Republican primary is nowhere near a done deal... but I haven't heard Mitt Romney's voice on a single news prgram, video or radio, since South Carolina/Florida. I haven't heard Romney MENTIONED by media where he wasn't treated as an also - ran. The media would have like Huckabee... but they'll settle for McCain.

The scripts are already in the cans.

If I was a pure conservative idealogue, I'd actually have more objections to Romney, don't you think?

My objection to illegal immigrations is based on the premise we have substituted Mexicans as cotton pickers and simultaneously subsidized the nation of Mexico as a failed state... and set ourselves up for Balkanization that we could avoid with some pretty simple and straightforward policy changes.

I agree with you - a fence is stupid to the point of being an insult to the intelligence of all citizens...

... but hey, we're here looking seriously at Obama or Hillary or McCain in the White House.

Talk about an insult.

BTW, the Stanley Cup Final will be played in Hell before you see an Obama/Clinton ticket. There is no profit for either one of them in such a deal.

I see two years of scaryness followed by two or six years of paralysis. Which is about long enough for the children of 9/11 to begin to enter the national scene in a big way.

Posted by: TmjUtah at February 4, 2008 1:45 PM

Um, for someone who has such a grasp on the excesses of extremist Republicans, you certainly don't seem to know anything they actually, you know, talk about.

I've yet to hear -anyone- complain about McCain's stances on gay marriage or abortion. His record on those is quite defensible, actually. He's voted for federal funding of embryonic stem cell research, which sucks, but on abortion itself there's really no room for complaint among conservatives, and no one with any knowledge of his record -is- complaining about it. And after reading damn near every conservative complaint about McCain for weeks now, I don't even know what his position on gay marriage -is-, which should tell you how often it's actually come up.

So in your "Big 3", the only one you got right was immigration. What conservatives have talked about otherwise have been the fact that he voted against tax cuts four times, the assault on the Constitution that was McCain Feingold, and a host of other issues. Add to that things like the Gang of 14, etc., and... well... Bill Quick just did a list of 10 reasons he could never vote for McCain, and SURPRISE, abortion and homosexuality aren't even on the list.

But hey, I suspect your readers are content with only being presented with arguments that fit their ridiculous caricatures of conservatives, so you keep working with that.

Qwinn

Posted by: Qwinn at February 4, 2008 1:48 PM

I agree with Coulter...if McCain is the nominee Hillary gets my vote as she is more conservative.

Posted by: OH guy at February 4, 2008 1:50 PM

I take your point, but I oppose McCain not for "purity" or to "teach them a lesson", but on purely practical grounds. When the next President tries to pass another amnesty to another twenty million illegal aliens, Republicans will oppose a Democratic President and probably beat him. They would have a much more difficult time going against McCain (who, as you might have noticed, fights damn dirty against his own kind). BTW, you don't send the infantry into the barrios - you cut off illegal aliens' ability to work, the way Arizona just did.

Posted by: Red at February 4, 2008 1:55 PM

"The gist of the Republican argument against McCain seems to be that he is not pure enough for many conservatives."

No, the gist of the Republican argument against McCain is that he's an intemperate jerk who aggressively seeks out opportunities to attack conservatives. He does this because doing it gets him love from the MSM, and it is the MSM that has given him his support.

I can work with a candidate who disagrees with me on some issues.

I refuse to work with a candidate who chooses to attack and insult me. McCain attacks and insults conservatives. Therefore we don't support him.

That's not "having a death wish." Supporting him would be "having a death wish", the death of everything we value.

Posted by: Greg D at February 4, 2008 1:55 PM

I don't like McCain. I don't like McCain-Feingold; I don't like it that he's actually bought into "Global Warming/Change" and he seems to think making money is "shady."

I will vote for him in November. I've already decided that. Not a single damned thing Hillary Obama tells me will sway me to do otherwise. I won't vote third party, I won't stay home.

Simple formula, no?

Posted by: Roderick Reilly at February 4, 2008 1:56 PM

You forgot to add:

First Amendment Rights: A done deal. Kiss whatever freedoms you had before McCain-Feingold goodbye. There's no way you're getting them back. You want to make comments on TV about candidates 60 days before an election? Get a career with the mass media like the rest of McCain's pals.

Business friendly policies: A done deal. Free-market economics are dead in the realm of public discourse. It's cooler than ever to bash big business with pseudo-marxist class envy.

Energy policy: A very done deal. Unquestioned acceptance of all climate change theory is the new orthodoxy. Haven't you been watching the news? No new drilling, unilateral cap and trade and anything else to get our economy down to size.

Party loyalty: Only goes one way, buddy. You've gotta support "The Maverick," but he has no obligation to support any particular platform of the party that sponsors him.


Posted by: Richard at February 4, 2008 1:57 PM

Here, here. I agree - conservatives HAVE jumped the shark (liberals did on 9/12/01).

Reagan was NOT ideologically pure. He did the 3 things are conservatives most fear in McCain.

1) Amnesty for illegals in 1986.
2) Appointment of 2 moderate SC Justices (Kennedy and O'Connor) vs. 1 conservative (Scalia). I repeat : Only 1 conservative among 3 chances.

3) Reagan raised taxes late in his term. Sure, he lowered them at first, but raised them in the end.

So Reagan would not be acceptable to the present-day conservatives.

I am a single-issue voter : my issue is the War against Radical Islam (including Iraq). John McCain is my candidate. I spent the last 6 years defending the WoT from Leftists, and am I more than equal to defending from self-proclaimed 'conservative' RINOs who don't actually support the greatest issue of our time.

I voted for GWB twice, and defend him on Iraq to this day. I will vote for McCain in 2008.

Posted by: GK at February 4, 2008 1:57 PM

I'll agree with your assessments of abortion and homosexuality. Your assessment of illegal immigration is simply wrong. Of course mass deportations or an East German fence are impossible. However, a better guarded border would work much better than the current nearly undefended border we have now. After all, when fences are constructed now, illegal traffic there drops and illegals try to find another route. Keep doing this, and you'll make a good dent in the flow.

But even that's not the main plan. All one has to do is stiff employer sanctions against Americans who knowingly employ illegal aliens. This is proven effective - just look at Arizona's success with their new law. This is only one example of many.

In short, fixing illegal immigration is not the quixotic quest you portray. Rather, it's been proven that it can work. It's frankly disgusting that Republicans would consider nominating someone who doesn't merely agree with your (mistaken) position that the problem can't be improved, but who actually wants to actively make it worse.

Posted by: Matt at February 4, 2008 1:59 PM

And if we order now we'll get Bill for free.
It's Popeil Hell!
Everything we didn't want or need made manifest in spite of ourselves.

Posted by: David McKinnis at February 4, 2008 2:00 PM

Oh, and if the situation is that the American people really want Democrat policies (close Gitmo, don't be mean to the terrorists, trash the economy for "global warming", raise taxes on "the rich", socialize medicine, etc.), then while I think they're horribly wrong to want them, I think it's their right to get the screwups they want.

I just want them to get those horribly wrong policies from someone with a D behind their name, not an R. Because I want the right people to be blamed when those policies screw things up.

Posted by: Greg D at February 4, 2008 2:02 PM

Your point seems to be that the Republican party is as Democrat as the Democrats?

You know, the Whigs had an argument along these lines a long time ago.

Oh? You can't seem to recall the Whigs or the argument? - Precisely.

Posted by: davis,br at February 4, 2008 2:05 PM

Well said. I was in the anti-McCain camp until I realized that we're shooting ourselves in the foot. Sitting out the election or writing in Fred Thompson does not send a "message"; it just makes conservatives irrelevant.

Conservatives should find a way to work with McCain and by including ourselves in his administration attempt to influence policy, raise up other conservative candidates via the grass roots, and influence the direction of the national GOP leadership.

Posted by: Chris Wysocki at February 4, 2008 2:06 PM

Brilliant.

But I'm just not ready to put that bumpersticker on my car. (People I can't stand might mistake me for angry leftist who wanted to kill Republicans, and they might try to make friends!)

As to "Think positive. Think -- Gay Divorce Court," I've been trying to warn the clueless gay marriage advocates that they've got a good thing going with the government out of their bedrooms and now they're poised to ruin it by bringing Family Court in! Then there are the financial angles; I know a wealthy gay couple -- he's an art dealer and he's a jeweler and CPA -- who take advantage of many tax loopholes because they're legally "strangers" and no marriage can be imputed by the IRS. They told me that they live in fear of gay marriage and that if it ever happens, the IRS would hold they now have an identity of interests and they'd be ruined.

How and why this became one of the three big issues, I'm not sure. I guess Romney and McCain will both believe in preserving tax loopholes for gay couples though.

Why isn't this more widely known?

Posted by: Eric Scheie at February 4, 2008 2:06 PM

Homosexuality, gay marriage a done deal...

You might feel differently if you ever had to try to explain to your six year old son why there were so many pictures of male buttocks in the front window of the San Francisco Barnes & Noble.

Posted by: Humbert at February 4, 2008 2:07 PM

Happy Instalanche, Mr. Vanderleun!

Posted by: TmjUtah at February 4, 2008 2:07 PM

Why bother voting Republican at all? You've just told me that all my conservative causes are basically dead letter. Why shouldn't I just vote for a Dem who promises fiscal conservatism and a good defense policy? I really only care about a range of issues, not which party is in power, so why should it matter to me if the President is Republican or Dem? That's two of the three Republican pillars, right?

Posted by: Al Maviva at February 4, 2008 2:07 PM

This is just what I need. A liberal telling me why I am too "pure" if I do not support McCain. And filled with BS references to border control, i.e. the Berlin Wall reference. It seems that the best way to retain control of the White House is to elect someone that is virtually indistinguishable from the left except on defense. Yes, it would be easy to prostitute my principles and vote for the left's favorite conservative. I mean the Democrats's reelected Bill Clinton after they knew him for what he was. However, I can't be that much of a whore.

Posted by: Tom Fife at February 4, 2008 2:09 PM

"What would work would be some sort of East German wall 1,969 miles long. This monstrosity would have guard towers, mine fields, attack Dobermans, armored cars, and about 100,000 armed border guards with a shoot on sight policy (3 shifts of 17 guards per mile). After around 500 Mexican civilians were shot dead, this might have some effect on reducing the flow. I'm not quite ready for this draconian a solution. Are you?"

Yes. Followed by benign neglect of the illegal aliens already here--you won't be deported unless you commit another crime, but you'll never, ever become an American citizen and any business employing you will be punished to the fullest extent of current law.

In six months, the only problem with that wall is that it might be hard to accommodate everyone rushing to leave.

Posted by: Big Jim at February 4, 2008 2:13 PM

Its' NOT about "purity", this purity meme smells of Rove or a related minions Media mechinations.

it's about being SO far off base as to be unacceptable. I'm NOT a republican, I'm a Libartarian who votes "Conservitive". I dont give a fig about abortion (in light of greater problems)Nor do I REALLY care (in any overriding way) about Gay marriage.

I care about "THE WAR".

Any Schmuck that doesnt think the southern border is part of this war shouldn't be president, plain and simple. Also very plain is the fact that John McCain is NOT that stupid, he KNOWS it's a part of the current war, he simpley LIES about his goals.

& oh yeah, he's MY Senator, I stopped voting for him many years ago. He's known here in AZ as "what a disapointment". If it were common knowledge about his "outreach director" being a mexican cabinet member for V Fox, he would NEVER have kept his AZ Senatorial position. As it is, if he fails as president, his career is over here in AZ now that the truth be known.


WHAT WE NEED IS A WRITE-IN FOR FRED OR NEWT.

Time to motivate AM radio to organise it.

Posted by: Rivenburg at February 4, 2008 2:13 PM

I certainly don't like the way the "true" conservatives are going about this primary season, but you aren't even close to figuring out their rational for staying home or voting Dem.

Posted by: runninrebel at February 4, 2008 2:15 PM

Gerard, I'm sorry to disagree with you so strongly here, but you've really put up the most risible straw men for the reasons conservatives oppose McCain. All three of them. Romney's no pro-life standard-bearer, I've no idea what either man stands for on gay marriage (and nobody's talking about it anyway) and you've totally misrepresented what even the most strident border-enforcement advocates have proposed.

George HW Bush was not all that conservative, but I was fine getting behind him because he tried to draw up a coalition that included us. McCain, on the other hand, delights in kicking us in the teeth and has done so for years. He's shown zero loyalty to the party. Why should we show any to him?

Posted by: See-Dubya at February 4, 2008 2:21 PM

Why vote for McCain over Hillary or Obama? One (hypenated) word: Commander-in-Chief.

Posted by: neo-neocon at February 4, 2008 2:24 PM

The word of the day is chauvinist: One who will defend anyone who calls themself a Republican no matter what they really are.

Posted by: Max at February 4, 2008 2:30 PM

You know what's hilarious? There is one wildcard that everyone knows would get McCain in office and that is Condi Rice as a running mate. McCain Rice beats any combination of Clinton Obama. Romney Rice might beat any combination, but I can't really imagine anyone from inside the beltway who'd wish to play second fiddle to Romney.

Like it or not, Rice blunts Obama's multiculti appeal AND fires up the party. The answer is staring you all in the face, or are extremist conservatives going to start self-destructing over her purity too?

Posted by: Cobb at February 4, 2008 2:32 PM

Conservatives, Republicans, lend me your ears.

You're not getting your "dream" candidate.

Reverend John Galt isn't running for President this year.

Stomping your feet, pouting and holding your breath until you pass out isn't going to help a damn bit. Neither is staying home to "Teach the GOP a lesson".

Deal with it.

Posted by: Mumblix Grumph at February 4, 2008 2:33 PM

The answer is staring you all in the face, or are extremist conservatives going to start self-destructing over her purity too?

Not at all, but we'd prefer a Rice/McCain ticket.

Posted by: geoff at February 4, 2008 2:41 PM

Any analysis of why many don't like McCain that doesn't even mention campaign finance reform is completely and utterly missing the point. That's like talking about criticisms of Richard Nixon and failing to ever mention Watergate.

I think it indicates a desperate need to justify and rationalize a McCain candidacy, solely to feel good about winning. But what have you really won, if you elect a supposed Republican who is quite prepared to violate the social compact on which this nation is based?

Posted by: Billy Hollis at February 4, 2008 2:43 PM

I take it your long disquisition was written from a RINO point of view. It certainly does not reflect a conservative sensibility. More Chamberlain than Churchill, to put it another way. McCain is not to be trusted, that's why conservatives don't like him and won't vote for him. The Goldwater revolution yielded Reagan in time and the northwestern country club grip on the party was broken. The same process is going on now.

Posted by: Banjo at February 4, 2008 2:45 PM

Hey, look at Spain. They voted out a strong leader and replaced him with a leftist who immediately kow towed to Al Queda. Sure, they still have to arrest Islamic mutts bent on terrorism, but Spain is not suffering that badly.

Electing Obama will not be the end of America. It will however be the end of the coalition in which Conservatives are treated like back street whores by the RNC.

The only way the Republican Party is going to learn is by wandering in the wilderness for the electoral equivalent of 40 days.

Bring it on.

Posted by: Paul A' Barge at February 4, 2008 2:54 PM

Dear Mr. Vanderleun: Winston Churchill is an iconic leader these days, so it worth recalling what his lifelong friend Lord Birkenhead said about Churchill in leadership roles:

"Winston was often right, but when he was wrong, well, my God."

There will an awful lot of My Godding in a McCain administration, starting from the first week. When you accept a dinner invitation with McCain, you're never sure when the door opens if he'll greet you with a smile, a handshake, and a beer, or with a baseball bat, a German Shepherd, and a can of mace. Running for my life from McCain is not my preferred form of exercise, but I'll take it in place of the jumping to conclusions your post indulges. Why the rush? It is likely that Super Tuesday will settle who the GOP nominee is. If not, certainly by the end of March. McCain is the likely nominee. Why not let the process play out? If Mitt Romney (my candidate) loses in head to head fights, there will be less stitching up to do afterwards, and less of a chance for buyer's remorse, which could also kill the GOP's chances this year. I'll grant you freely that such zanies as Ann Coulter are causing more trouble then they are worth, but the superior "thirst for death" tone of McCain supporters is gasoline, delivered at one thousand pounds per suqare inch pressure, on the flames. Michelle Malkin is likely to have a lot of crow stew to eat, but her question, "McCain has a former Mexican government official as his 'Director of Hispanic outreach.' Who's his Director of Conservative Outreach?" is telling. Who IS McCain's director of conservative outreach?

And why not answer Big Jim's comment that a fence and strict enforcement of illegal employment laws will solve a huge portion of the problem? Let the CEO of Iowa Beef Processors feel handcuffs, and the flow northward will reverse itself.

Sincerely yours,
Gregory Koster

Posted by: Gregory Koster at February 4, 2008 2:55 PM

The only way the Republican Party is going to learn is by wandering in the wilderness for the electoral equivalent of 40 days.

Wasn't that the justification for throwing congressional control to Democrats two years ago?

Posted by: Cover Me, Porkins at February 4, 2008 3:01 PM

That wall sounds pretty darn good to me, and I'm sure if we enlist the help of architects and garden clubs, our wall would be a lot prettier than the communist's. Our wall would also have some gates where law abiding citizens would be free to come and go, but woe to the person who tries to climb our wall or uses phony documents.

Posted by: Gotcha at February 4, 2008 3:03 PM

What a pathetic caricature of the anti-illegal immigration position. You've made up my mind for me with your condescending yet at the same time idiotic thoughts on immigration, sir.

Posted by: b at February 4, 2008 3:14 PM

"Reverend John Galt"

LOL

Love that image... Sort of sums up what I think is wrong with the Republican Party, but only if you know much about Ayn Rand.

Religious extremists whose idea of "conservatism" is making the law of the land conform to whatever their preachers' notion of morality is today, and little else, and libertarians whose idea of "conservatism" is limited government, just aren't compatible for long.

Posted by: Barry at February 4, 2008 3:16 PM

Purity test? What nonsense. Neither Giuliani nor Romney could be considered pure conservatives but they have not met the hostility McCain faces.

McCain may vote as a conservative on the easy issues but whenever there is highly visible conflict between the parties (media coverage) he is typically leading the other side.

McCain has brought the hostility on himself.

Posted by: alan at February 4, 2008 3:26 PM

I don't trust or even like McCain, but I'll vote for him, if he is the nominee. The war on terror is too important to leave to the Democrats. The lives of my children and my children's children are at stake. Conservatives need to suck it up and work like h*ll during a McCain administration to minimize the damage on the domestic front. The only potential catastrophic outcome of this election is losing the war on terror. Everything else is either preventable or fixable down the road. I am conservative. I am willing to work harder to keep McCain in check during a McCain administration. I am willing to accept a few defeats on the domestic front and work hard to fix them later on. What I am not willing to do is throw away the progress that has been made by our brave military men and women in the war on terror because of hatred and disdain of McCain's liberal leanings and his betrayal of conservatives in the party like me. That would be selfish and foolish.

Posted by: Darrell at February 4, 2008 3:29 PM

So your answer is to do nothing. Since all the solutions are so bad, I guess we are to do nothing while, as Obama says, "hundreds of thousands of immigrants" flock over our southern border. Are you really prepared to allow the submersion of American culture for the sake or universally available tasty tacos? Yes, four years of Hillary seems bad and may be. But think. If she is elected, the remaining Republicans in Congress and elsewhere will be in full-throated opposition along with Democrats from marginal districts. If McCain is elected, we will get similar policies (escept in the defense area), but the Republicans will be constrained by the need for "supporting our president" and the Democrats will find it hard to oppose policies he proposes. Supreme Court? Who will McCain appoint, a Warren Rudman-type Concord Coalition RINO? Once again, how will any conservative oppose him? At some point, it is no answer to say that four years of Hillary would be
"worse."

Posted by: JMcNulty at February 4, 2008 3:40 PM

You're not listening. It is not 4 years -- long enough -- but 8 with a potential of 16.

Posted by: vanderleun at February 4, 2008 3:42 PM

I don't see a problem with a civil war. Many on the left are the exact opposite of what America is about.

I say if McCain, Hillary, or B.O. are elected, we vote back with our rifles.

Posted by: ATLien at February 4, 2008 3:45 PM

Seems to me that those who don't have a problem with civil wars don't know much about them.

Posted by: Vanderleun at February 4, 2008 3:50 PM

Wasn't that the justification for throwing congressional control to Democrats two years ago?

It's really, really hard to get dolts' attention. One or two more election cycles spent in the wilderness may do it. Rewarding them for being dolts certainly won't.

Posted by: PersonFromPorlock at February 4, 2008 3:57 PM

"Romney is the only conservative in the GOP primary. "

I dont get the ire against McCain. Romney is a tax raisin, gun grabbin, universal healthcarin, gay marriage enablin, abortion flip floping governmor of the most liberal state in the union... and MCCAIN is supposed to be the stealth liberal?

Lets face it- McCain has powerful enemies in the Republican 'inteligensia', while Romney has somehow evolved into a good ol boy.

I dont really care which wins, they both seem like stuffed suits to me. But I will support either with my full strength against Hillary or Obama. Anyone that doesnt TRULY cant call themselves conservative. All the childish fantasies the anti-McCain faction have about him are absolute reality under these hard left Dems with a Dem congress. Universal healthcare will be law in 6 months. The war will be surrendered. All the playacting and breathholding pretending McCain is somehow going to molt into McGovern the second he takes the oath will in fact be moot when one of those two wins.

I hope the purists feel good about 'letting the Dems' ruin the country themselves when they are standing in line for their mandatory Hillarycare checkups.

Posted by: Mark Buehner at February 4, 2008 4:07 PM

I am sure you have to compromise to win but there was no electorial advantage in campaign finance reform - it was pure incumbant protection, unbconstitutional at bat. Sure you have to run half repub half democrat to win, just ask Ronald R.

Posted by: Doug_s at February 4, 2008 5:21 PM

Abortion and gay marriage "done deals"? Quite the wish list you have there, but that's crap.

Will abortion ever be 100% outlawed in this country? No. But if Roe v. Wade is repealed, then the legality of abortion will be curtailed to varying degrees throughout the country. Partial-birth abortions will be outlawed almost everywhere, without the hoops that have to be jumped through now. Several states would likely limit abortion to early term. And a state or two might outlaw it altogether (as South Dakota almost tried a few years ago).

Gay marriage? There's what, one state that recognizes full gay marriage, and only a handful that recognize civil unions? And don't forget all the states that have passed defense-of-marriage amendments, including liberal California and Oregon.

Sorry. The fact that you WANT abortion and gay marriage to be dead issues, doesn't really make them dead issues.

I don't owe the Republican candidate my vote. If their nominee is so far to the left that he doesn't represent my views, then I'm not going to vote for him. For the record, I don't feel this way about McCain; he has a pretty good (not perfect) record on right-to-life issues, so I can vote for him in good conscience. I just won't be doing so with any enthusiasm; no bumper stickers, no contributions, not even arguing around the water cooler that folks should vote for him.

Posted by: Stephen at February 4, 2008 5:33 PM

The consolation prize: Republican candidates all favor price supports for criminals and terrorists AKA the Drug War.

It is perfectly Republican in conception. Aid your enemies, screw your friends.

Posted by: M. Simon at February 4, 2008 6:03 PM

Interesting post, interesting comments. Tomorrow is Super Tuesday, and I am still not sure which Republican I am voting for in the primary.
You identified three throw the toys out of the pram issues. I think wide spread legalization of abortion has had some pernicious unitended consequences, but the horse is out of the barn on that one, or as you say, it is a done deal. I could care less about McCain's stance on "right to life" or "abortion" or what have you. To me, the issue of gay marriage is a lot less about "gay" and a lot more about what the building blocks of society are going to be - the individual and the traditional family, or Hillary's governmental village. Given the inabiilty of judges and elites to draw nuanced distinctions, it is the unintended consequences that concern me. (Best definiton of unintended consequences - trying to control a complex system with a simple one: HT Marginal Revolution.) All that aside, I could care less about McCain's stance on gay marriage. It is not a defining election issue. That leaves immigration. I am the great grandchild of immigrants. They either made it or went back, but without the benefit of a welfare system that was paid for by someone else. And with the encouragement to assimilate, not be multi-cultural. I am not looking to deport whatever many million of illegals that are here now, but I darn sure am not looking to add more to tax the education, health care, etc. costs. I'm not with McCain on that one, but I also don't consider it THE defining issue.

But as a Conservative, I personally have a lot of other problems with McCain.
I think the Conservative concerns about McCain are multi-dimensional.

1. Given McCain Feingold, McCain Kennedy, "patriotism not profit," as if profit was a dirty word - it is difficult for me to reconcile any of those positions with Conservatism: for me, an idea of limited government, government because of the consent of the governed, not government who consents to allow its citizens anything; government that enforces laws made by accountable due process(not fiat); government that recognizes that the wisdom of the invisible hand is better for all than the power of the economic planner. I do not believe that at his core, McCain believes in any of those principles.

2. Politics is the art of the possible, not the pure. But grounding in a set of first principles matters. Margaret Thatcher is the example of a politician who understood that the "when" of taking action was flexible, but the action itself should be based in beliefs. McCain seems to believe in himself, not a coherent set of ideas. Ideas do matter in governance.

3. Mc Cain seems to have a temperment problem. See comment about believing in himself before anything else. He is not someone I would want to have a beer with. Or near.

4. If McCain is the nominee, and is elected - two very big "ifs" - does that mean that there is not standard bearer for any conservative ideas? (Not all, mind you - I mean any.)
I think that is the greatest fear for conservatives - that McCain is the Richard Nixon of the early 21st century. And would that then mean that the country had to endure not a repeat not only of the Nixonian debacle, but also the Carter catastrophe?

5. From a Machiavellian perspective, could it be that the conservative "media," believing that McCain needs the conservatives to vote for him, is making a lot of negative noise in order to maximize the concessions they get from McCain for their support? Just a thought......

Having made the anti-McCain case - none of which involves abortion, gay marriage or immigration - I am still undecided about tomorrow's primary. But if McCain is the nominee, running against either Hillary or Obama, I will vote for McCain because he may not be that different on a lot of things, but he is on national security and that matters. No - I will vote against Hillary or Obama, but not for McCain. He will just happen to be the beneficiary.


Posted by: C Ward at February 4, 2008 6:06 PM

Gerard, you ask, after quoting some bozo who terribly mischaracterizes the anti-McCain voters, "Do you feel lucky?"

No, of course we don't, faced with the plate of dreck a once great party is serving up for our delectation.

However, by refusing to eat that particular sandwich, we will feel principled. And those who connive at the upcoming crushing of John McCain by any Democrat will be able to feel something in December of this year, too: the joy of knowing they sold out their principles and still got their butts royally kicked.

Posted by: Bill Quick at February 4, 2008 6:25 PM

Here in Washington State we have an excellent example of the Republican Death Wish in action. Over the last several decades the R party has subverted, betrayed, sold out and corrupted the moderates who could have made them a viable "loyal opposition" instead of a statewide laughingstock.

Ellen Craswell was one of the worst offenders. Smart and well-intentioned though she may have been, her drive for ideological purity defeated a multitude of viable candidacies and issues, not least her own. We can only pray that her political offspring won't torpedo round two of Dino Rossi's campaign for governor. He lost a close one last time to insanely inept ballot-counting, with a little help from Republican hopelessness. Snarking from the far-right wing could easily push him under again, to the sound of bitter laughter from political realists like me.

We've just got to do better. Especially on the national level. That's why when super Tuesday is over, assuming McCain is indeed the man wearing the "R" label, I'll instantly become a fan and an advocate.

Because the alternatives will no longer be theoretical possibilities, but just the blunt choice of appeasement with eventual defeat or righteous self-defense of our country, children and culture.

McCain's defiance of tyranny was proved in Vietnam. But Clinton has shown herself incapable of learning and, while Obama has yet to be tested, his rhetoric does not leave much room for hope.

Would you really rather have Bill boffing interns in the White House for eight more years than to cast a reluctant but rational vote for McCain?

Grow up.

Posted by: Askmom at February 4, 2008 7:06 PM

vanderleun,

Normally I finish your posts with a heck yeah, but from my vantage you've missed 2/3s of the boat on why conservatives don't like McCain. Where did you get your ideas from?

The blogs I read go on about McCain-Feingold, immigration, the Gang of 14, some mention Gitmo, etc. And on your immigration thoughts, what the heck? No one I read is seriously talking about mass roundups in the barrios, but rather enforcing the laws we have and building a fence.

I'll be voting Republican in the general election regardless, so you're not talking to me anyway. Still, it seems your purpose is not to persuade but rather to belittle, and that's not going to help your stated cause.

Posted by: agip at February 4, 2008 7:29 PM

I was going to have a lot to say but the ever-sharp, ever-sane Bill Whittle says it all for me at Rachel Lucas' place where she's as gobstopped by all you Republican maniacs as I am:
------
Rachel, that was like a breath of fresh air for me.

I would point out that this “let them screw up the country so we can win next time” theory was loudly bandied about in 2006. How’d that work out for us?

We lost the House and the Senate, and we have stayed in Iraq and seen the benefit of the Surge only because we had a President who said he would veto any withdrawal legislation.

Now, many of you are calling for the same strategy again. The result will be to have all three branches of government (yes — especially the Judiciary) go hard left. Forgive me if I do not see the sense in this.

When I hear this argument, I think of this: Grandma smokes in bed, and we’ve told her a hundred times not to do it. So now, to make sure she gets the point on how serious we are, we’re going to stand there and let the bed burn. To teach her a lesson. Hey, know what? Let’s let the whole house burn down! That will REALLY send her a message. I have an even better idea: Let’s let the grandkids burn to death too, because if anything will get her attention, that’s it.

We’ve lost 4,500 soldiers fighting in Iraq. If you think I am going to sit back and let Hilary or Obama cut and run, and have those brave men and women die in vain, simply because I don’t like John McCain (and I most emphatically do not like John McCain), then you have another think coming.
-----

Like I said, sharp and sane.

That's at:
http://rachellucas.com/?p=600

Posted by: Jack Reno at February 4, 2008 8:16 PM

Oh yeah, in case you're wondering where Rachel is coming from...

Rachel Lucas Dear People, You have lost your minds. Love, Rachel.UPDATED

"But when Hillary or Obama get elected, keep your pieholes shut for the next 4-8 years as they socialize healthcare, pull the troops out too early, negotiate with terrorists, raise your taxes a shitload more than McCain ever would have, restrict your gun rights more than McCain ever would have, appoint Al Gore as some sort of Global Warming Czar, fail to do jack shit about immigration, appoint ultra-liberal justices instead of possibly semi-liberal justices, legalize gay marriage, strengthen Roe V. Wade, and on and on. After all, you sent a message. You taught a lesson. THAT's what really matters, right? THAT's the way to protect your conservative ideals."

Posted by: Jack Reno at February 4, 2008 8:20 PM

The big 3, abortion, immigration, and homosexuality? Different folks have different values and more importantly have different principles which they hold dear. I think you are overlooking some fairly important hot button issues. People are angry, very angry over McCain's assault on the First Amendment and don't trust him on the Second.

Nobody is mentioning it in the media at the moment but I think the Supreme Court's decision on the Second Amendment this summer will cast a huge shadow on the election if it goes against an individuals right to bear arms.

Posted by: Amused Observer at February 4, 2008 8:30 PM

I am speaking from the point of view of a soldier who is going to deploy soon. I just want to say that the purists who would rather see Hillary/Obama elected than Mcain can go #%$! themselves.

I am glad to see priorities are in the right place right?

Posted by: A Soldier at February 4, 2008 9:53 PM

It's not a matter of purity. If it were, Thompson or Giuliani would still be in the race. Romney isn't perfect but he's closer than McCain. McCain could win, but it could be a Pyrrhic victory for conservatives.

Obama/Clinton almost certainly won't happen. She wouldn't accept it because it'd be a step down for her.

Obama/Edwards, maybe. But yeccch.

Posted by: Jim C. at February 4, 2008 9:59 PM

I don't see how gay marriage is a "done deal." It's barely made any headway, and seems to have suffered some serious setbacks. But it's (or at least should be) a State issue, so it's barely worth mentioning.

I'm not even sure if the "ideologically pure" are as such. McCain supports smaller government, and although he may not cut taxes, he definitely would not raise them. Had McCain been President these past 8 years, we most likely would not have had the biggest increase in non-defense discretionary spending since LBJ.

Posted by: Nathan at February 4, 2008 10:40 PM

I'm a single issue voter too. The black dude says: make pot legal. No wait, to depot it, er, decrim it, so it's just ticket, like my current online-home-alone-but-public drunkenness. But I like beer, despite the tax revenue vs. what is placed on those less healthy tea-drinking teetotalers that we wrote to one fine day on hemp paper. If pot was legal I'd smoke it to get to sleep, and the smoke would make me cough like cigarettes do and cancer lawsuits against the pot industry would flourish and then Betsy Ross flags and clothes and toilet paper would be made out of hippy fibers (again), and stoned or not, that stuff itches! Ever heard to 300 thread count hemp sheets? Naw sir. I think we should wait, wait, wait, where was I? Oh, no, if they de-criminalize pot, then a slippery-er slope than my cousin Sue-Soo's oyster dish might lead to the "de-criminalization" of cocaine too, and Coke might really start to wake us up instead of fatten us hormonally fattening fructose, and my budding cocaine business will be taxed at zero percent since it wont make any money like it does now, and that $500K a year I put into more Google stock would disappear, and then there will be no more new Googles. Oh, shut up, right, Mescaline Second Man Bill, can't let that "follow the money" tax cut on California's number one "cash" crop be noticed by some black dude (the real first "black" president instead of you?!) and the harm it's doing one side of his family? And could high school students then get their hands on any drugs at all, since it was a lot easier to get pot than from your kind of bruised up "friend" with the abusive drunk father than to find that old guy called Bud to buy you (warm) Bud, which is said to make you Wiser. These being words of a raving lunatic, please move on, as long as they are not already removed by Moderation or conservation, I mean Conservatism. Purity is a bid deal with a lot of our day-to-day issues, like the German beer purity law, or what to put in Coke to make it taste refreshing, as the fructose fattens you up for the kill (doctor bills). Wasn't it Lincoln that said Prohibition made all men into criminals? No no, just people who made the stuff or ingested it. A true conservative would indeed allow immigration (oh no, I'm sobering up). Bring us your huddled masses, your hungry, cheap labor etc.

Posted by: NikFromNYC at February 4, 2008 11:20 PM

No, it's not a mater of purity. It's about making this nation suffer under the Democrats so that we can get a "solid conservative" elected in 2012. And.... maybe a little revenge on McCain for pissing us off.

Sorry, A Soldier, we're just looking out for #1. Don't misunderstand. We like you and this nation. We just like ourselves better.

Posted by: Roy Mustang at February 4, 2008 11:57 PM

Looking from the outside, this is what a Brit sees, and doesn't like (Remember the old adage that when America sneezes, the rest of the world catches pneumonia):

Three Republican possibilities, all of whom are fundie lunatics by the standards of any other Western country and the front-runner of whom is quite likely to die in office leaving America, and the world, to the tender mercies of whoever his running-mate is.

And two Democrat possibilities; one is the second member of a dynasty, and will do anything and say anything to get into office, and has a background of corruption the stink of which has reached clear across the Atlantic. And the other is playing the minority card for all it's worth, and has no experience except that gained in the second most corrupt state in the Union.

And whichever of them wins, calling them by the same title as Washington, Lincoln and Reagan will be an insult to their memory.

Is that really the best a nation of 300 million can do? Where are people like Jack Ryan or Jed Bartlett when you need them?

The answer; the people America and the world really need won't enter the swamp - because they can't stand the smell.

By the way, the British government is as bad or worse. We'd do a lot better if the figurehead head of state here was actually in charge - she'd do what's right for the country instead of sticking her head in the trough.

Posted by: Fletcher Christian at February 5, 2008 3:56 AM

Your comment on immigration seems naieve. Fines and imprisonment of employers would solve the problem. Doubt me? Try not paying your income taxes. The Dems want the votes. The Reps want cheap labor. The people's will be dammed (with respect to your spam filter, I know how to spell it.) We don't need more laws or a fence, vigorous enforcement will end the problem.

That guns in the barrios thing? You must not remember the sixties and the seventies. The Feds have more guns than any gang. Burning down the neighborhood you live in didn't work then and it won't work now.

Gay marriage? My problem is that it is basically spitting in the face of some religions. FWIW, I'd have the government get out of the marriage business altogether. Your civil relationship with your spouse for tax and survivorship purposes is a civil right. The rest is no business of government.

Abortion? Judicial fiat is no way to settle this. We are a nation of laws, not a nation of judges.

On the main topic, I'm firmly in the ABC camp - Anybody But Clinton. Romney today, and whoever the Republican nominee is in November.

Posted by: MarkD at February 5, 2008 4:59 AM

I agree with you for the most part, though I do think many of the continuing culture battles will take place on the state level.

The purists aren't talking about the War much here or the erosion of our freedoms to the beast of climate change. We truly ain't seen nothing yet in this arena.

Posted by: Webutante at February 5, 2008 5:51 AM

Ah...so for Republicans to survive, they must become Democrats because the libs have already won the culture wars...blah, blah, blah... All else is to thirst for death...blah, blah, blah... Sorry, but I'm not a "Team Republican" kinda guy. All in all, I'd rather be right than be on the "winning" team.

Posted by: Pat Rand at February 5, 2008 5:56 AM

One of the blessings, when McCain gets his ass handed to him in November, is principled conservatives won't have to listen to McCain and his dishonest 'GOP uber alles' thugs dishonestly lecturing us anymore.

McCain can do Viagra commercials, and you 9/11 RINO's can go back to whining about the Clintons.

Posted by: Barbula at February 5, 2008 6:00 AM

One thing a time, I suppose.

Let's see: German adopted Nazism in the 1930s, and where is Germany today? China adopted Communism in the 1940s, and where is China today?

So, yes, I'd rather have Mexico fall farther into tyranny now if forty to sixty years later, it'd become Germany or China of today.

Posted by: theag at February 5, 2008 6:15 AM

Well, Gerard, you seem to have hit a nerve with some people. Heh.

For myself, since Thompson backed out, I've been swaying back and forth between McCain and Romney and seeing both good and bad points about each.

Maybe you'll be happy to know that I'm going to my precinct caucus tonight and, largely because of your well-reasoned laying out of the facts (plus the fact that I can't really find many holes in your deductions), I'll be lining up with the McCain people.

Seriously, folks. President Clinton again? President Obama? If I HAD to take my pick, it would probably be Obama. But McCain so far outclasses either one (and Romney does too, for that matter) that it would be just STUPID to stay home in November, no matter which one wins.

Romney can't win. I don't necessarily agree with Gerard's assessment about the "weirdness" of Mormanism. I've known many LDS and find them to be quite "normal" in day-to-day life. But there's something about him--with the flip-flops on positions and the high polish on his image--that's just...Clintonish. *shudder*

Posted by: Dan at February 5, 2008 6:37 AM

It's funny. I've read lots of posts in opposition to McCain, but the only people I hear making the "not pure enough" argument are those who oppose the argument. Many of these same folks that are derided as wanting a "pure" candidate in McCain had previously expressed reservations but were willing to accept a Guilliani candidacy. The "purity" test, to my eyes, seems more of a strawman argument to attack legitimate specific policy issues and disagreements with McCain. Not entirely unlike the extreme Berlin Wall option this same post presents as the stereotypical "conservative" solution. I'm sorry, but whenever anyone trivializes a complex issue by characaturing the other's position with an extreme that argument looses almost all power with me.

Posted by: submandave at February 5, 2008 8:26 AM

"the only people I hear making the "not pure enough" argument are those who oppose the argument. "

Yep, that's right, submandave. That's a fourth strawman Gerard is using. It would be nice if he took on our actual arguments instead of the straw arguments that pro-McCain bloggers tell him that we're making.

And "Romney can't win" is just this bizarre myth with no basis in reality that everybody parrots to look smart.

Posted by: see-dubya at February 5, 2008 10:08 AM

The good is the enemy of the best.

Posted by: Dennis at February 5, 2008 11:27 AM

Why the blow-up on the Right. It's not really about McCain. The conservative rage to my mind is powered not by the actual prospect of McCain candidacy itself. The looming reality of McCain's nomination brings a deeper failure into focus. That knowledge is powered by the unconscious awareness that, on "The Big 3 Issues", the culture war is over. And the conservatives have lost. Reaction? Consume your own.

You are right. You are right as rain.

As I said on Neo's blog: I will pull the lever for McCain.

But, when he gets elected and we still get a Carbon-tax, a higher income tax and wage garnishment for socialized medicine, all I can say is: "I told me so!"

Interesting that 'guns' is no longer a 'big-four issue'? We won that one....

Posted by: Gray at February 5, 2008 12:43 PM

A conservative would never support or sign an unbalanced budget.

A conservative would oppose managed trade agreements (think NAFTA and CAFTA).

A conservative would support a defended border.

The NY and LA Times would never endorse a conservative politician.

John McCain's 'experience?'

- McCain-Feingold
- Lieberman-McCain Climate Stewardship Act
- Patriot Act
- Amnesty for illegal border crossers
.
.
...and the list is too long to continue.

If only there were another Bob Taft (not that poseur Reagan) conservative to choose from: take care of America's infrastructure; defend the borders; trade, not aggression, with other countries; sound fiscal policy background; ideas that challenge the status quo while presenting freedom, peace, and prosperity in a consistent manner.

Me? I'll support the only Taft conservative running: Dr. Ron Paul, even if it is a write-in vote. And I've been wandering the wilderness for twenty five years already so another 15 years is nothing. And the country, if it survives that long, certainly won't be a Republic or a Democracy.

Posted by: CitizenLiberty at February 5, 2008 2:32 PM

cee-dubya,

We're looking for somebody to be President of the United States, not President of the Republican Party. Not everybody is a Republican Puritan. Not every Republican is a Republican Puritan. Most of us know how to make comprimises and make do.

There is no 'should', there is only 'is'. You live in this world you adapt, you adjust, you deal instead of erecting a wall against the things you don't like.

Consider The Prince of Pompadoodle who...

...Sent his every friend away
And sat alone, safe, locked alive,
To count another day.

The Prince of Pompadoodle
May hoard each empty hour,
But none can know; no word comes from
The silent stony tower.

Are you asking us to be like him?

Posted by: Alan Kellogg at February 5, 2008 4:06 PM

The above point miss the point. It's not about 'purity', it's about fundamental goals.

The key to the success of the GOP over the last quarter century is quite simply that social-issue voters (meaning abortion, gay marriage, border security, etc), crossed over from the Democrats, breaking the FDR coalition precisely _because_ of those issues.

There are solid majorities in the US electorate in favor of most of the legacy of the New Deal, GWB's most popular domestic action was Medicare Part D, his troubles can be traced almost with laser precision to the day he 'touched Social Security'.

If the GOP decides to deemphasize social issues, it commits sucicide, going back to the 'natural minority' status it enjoyed from FDR's time to 1980. If there's no way to vote against abortion, gay marriage, etc, then the social voters have no reason _not_ to vote for the Democrats, since the Democrats are the more popular party on most economic issues. From globalization to the minimum wage to progressive taxation, on economics the Dems are more popular.

If economic conservatism, shorn of the social issues, was put to a national vote, it would be shellacked. The Democrats would win any such contest hands-down. Goldwater didn't lose because of his social issue positions, he lost because of the economic positions.

(I didn't say the Dems were _right_, I said they were more popular, which is what counts in elections.)

That said, the opposition to McCain is more about his personal trustworthiness than his ideological positions. He's widely seen by huge swaths of the party as self-serving, dishonorable, and deceptive.

Posted by: HC at February 5, 2008 7:18 PM

Then let us celebrate the shearing of America from conservative economic principles. You don't get to pivot on populism without buying Left economic policy, and that turns out to be exactly what first drives an electorate back right.

We stumbled along under the FDR's war on capitalism until the war put everybody back to work. The Great Society and War on Poverty sucked the treasure of the nation to dust, returning only an impressive public apathy for horrific, criminal accounting procedures and the death of the nuclear family, especially among blacks.

The Clintons were elected as "End of History" persons, and the tendency for the electorate to chase "me, me, me" government persisted until the iron fist peeked out of the velvet glove of Hillary! Care. Clinton, after his first tax increases, actually governed right of Bush I, economically.

The "don't mean nuthin" politics of chasing a f*cking Nobel and ignoring crimes in the executive led people to seek an adult option in 2000. Unfortunately, the party that had worked hard to earn the adult mantle had softened to become Democrat Lite, abandoning economic core principles quietly as they became fat and greasy in their Washington fiefdoms.

So we've got a Democrat polity fueled by childish rage split between Nurse Ratchett and the Changey Man, with a hollow, lip service Republican nobility trying to pander on God, Guns, and Guts while ignoring their own free fall into despotism.

Popular. It gets you everything you want, right up until the lights go out.

Posted by: TmjUtah at February 6, 2008 5:27 AM

Can you waste space on the internet? If so, you have.

Posted by: Dutch at February 6, 2008 1:28 PM

Gerard, I've admired a great deal of what you have written and you are still on my blogroll, so this is not an expression of hostility.

I am, though, saddened that you have bought the defeatist, "we can't stop them" line on immigration. Of course we can. It won't take a Berlin Wall, just a double reinforced fence with open space around it — that will eliminate 98 percent of the border jumping. Of course we don't need midnight raids and concentration camps to cause the ones who have already colonized the U.S. to self-deport. We just need to take away the goodies they came here for, as is evident by the number of illegals bailing out from states like Oklahoma that have drawn the line.

What is saddest of all is that you have bought into the "conceptual country" idea, that America is nothing but a set of propositions rather than a history and culture with — yes, damn it — primarily European ancestry. While you probably wouldn't put it so starkly, it is clear to me that you are indifferent to the overpopulation, pressure on natural resources and land, the expanded welfare bureaucracy, the final end of a middle class, the social breakdown, and many other consequences of uncontrolled immigration by Third World peasants and criminals.

I thought you were that rare intellectual capable of reality testing instead of settling for ideological fantasies. Maybe you once were. Maybe living in Seattle destroys brain cells.

Posted by: Rick Darby at February 7, 2008 2:04 PM

Gerard, I'm sorry to say you're off base here, at least as far as I'm concerned. And from reading the comments, and from other reading I've done, I don't think I'm in the minority.

I don't worry about presidents and gay marriage or abortion, except to the extent said president will appoint proper judges. Presidents don't really impact that issue directly anyway. And to be frank I haven't thought much about either of these issues over the last couple of years. I was very happy to see Alito and Roberts offered up by Bush and confirmed. Few issues are more important to me -- or to the American people, really -- than having great judges.

Immigration, I'm not sure what to think. I don't understand the arguments of those who say "let them all in"; when has that ever worked? Economic vitality, while nice, is not a cure-all. Our cultural sovereignty has been under attack from within for decades now; is it a good idea to now attack from the outside, too?

I don't like McCain for a whole bunch of reasons. I'm a "conservative", ie, a classical liberal, who believes in free markets and the idea that words in the Constitution mean what they used to mean, and I don't appreciate McCain's long history of deal-making. People who pride themselves on their ability to make deals usually lose track of whatever ideals they might have had in the past.

But I may still vote for him based on the Commander in Chief argument. Winning in Iraq, and being sensible re: the use of force in general, is too important to me.

The audience for the message that conservatives need to deliver is **not** the electorate but the McCain wing of the GOP. Not voting at all, or writing in Thompson (which appeals to me on some level) won't get that done. We need to (1) elect McCain because he will be vastly better than the other Dems at the CINC role, and has discussed appointing conservative judges, but (2) we need to deliver the message very clearly to the GOP that McCain is indeed a Dem with a few "sensible" leanings, and we all know it, and we elected him only because in this election, at this time, in these circumstances, he was better than the others.

**Not** because we want more like him. Will that work? I dunno. I believe we must try though.

My $.02 anyway. It's pretty fascinating to watch the fur fly on this whole McCain controversy. ;-)

Posted by: Jeff Brokaw at February 8, 2008 7:16 PM

John McCain Is a War Monger

John McCain is a war monger who wants to stay in Iraq for 100 years. If he knew what he was doing, he would have voted against going into Iraq. Osama bin Laden is in western Pakistan and was never in Iraq. Why does John McCain ignore Osama bin Laden in western Pakistan? John McCain is no better that this jackass George Bush. Ronald Reagan supported Saddam Hussein in his effort to stop Iran. John McCain supports the leadership in Iraq which is controlled by Iran. A vote for John McCain would be a vote for another jackass like George Bush. We have had it with these stupid bastards who don’t even know that Iran already controls Iraq.

John McCain supports amnesty for illegal immigrants, opposed the tax cuts, opposes a marriage amendment, opposes drilling in Alaska, created McCain-Feingold, supports embryonic stem cell research which is no longer necessary, disrespected Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson because of their belief in God, was a member of the Keating 5 and promoted a Global Crossing contract for the Pentagon which resulted in a kickback for the Secretary of Defense. Shortly after the CEO of Global Crossing gave a million dollar contribution to the Clinton presidential library, they were awarded a $400 million dollar contract by the Pentagon. Secretary Cohen received a $500,000 kickback.

John McCain says he will protect our country. The "Able Danger" program exposed 9/11 a year in advance and the Cole bombing two weeks in advance. If we had a program that could have prevented 9/11 and the Cole bombing, then why hasn't John McCain kept the program in place? It would be irresponsible to dismantle a program that can protect our country. McCain never mentions "Able Danger" and therefore does not understand the importance of surveillance and data mining to protect our country.

Companies like Google, DoubleClick, ChoicePoint and Acxiom collect gigabytes of personal information on everyone. This information can be used by anyone in the world. Private business, nation states, terrorists and criminals all use surveillance and data mining. Everyone else in the world collects information, but our government which has to protect us is not allowed. Cisco sells surveillance software all over the world. Every major corporation in the world uses data mining. We have a group of stupid jackasses in Congress who allow everyone else in the world to use surveillance and data mining but won’t allow our government to protect this country.

The prime minister in Iraq, Nouri al-Maliki, is a Shiite who supports Hezbollah terrorists and he also supports Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr and his Mahdi Army militia in Sadr City. The Mahdi Army which is backed by Iran. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki was an Iranian agent for twenty years and was on the Iranian payroll! Death squads against innocent Sunnis were supported by Bayan Jabr, the Shiite Interior Minister. Iraq is now being controlled by the Shiite leaders in Iran. John McCain is as stupid as Bush. He is supporting a government that is backed and controlled by Iran. This guy is an idiot. It is time for thirty million vets to exact judgment on this jackass.

John McCain wants to raise taxes on energy which will place a burden on the middle class and hurt the economy. In order to use less foreign oil, we must lower taxes on those oil companies that will increase domestic exploration. Senator McCain does not understand basic economics. The intersection of the supply curve and the demand curve will give you the market price. When the demand for oil increases, the price will increase unless you increase the supply of oil. We need to increase the supply of oil worldwide in order to bring down prices. A tax on energy will give more money to the worthless politicians who will spend it on their pet projects. Disabled veterans and senior citizens rely on interest and dividend income to pay their bills. John McCain wants to raise taxes on interest and dividend income which would hurt our seniors and veterans.

Illegal immigrants murder twenty-five US citizens everyday. Senator John McCain disregards the safety of our children who are murdered everyday by illegal aliens. I guess he won’t mind if organized crime hires illegal immigrants to whack politicians who get in their way. We just had an illegal immigrant abduct a 13 year old boy at gunpoint in Florida while the boy was waiting for the school bus. This illegal immigrant had already been deported to Mexico. One of these illegal immigrants from Mexico brutally raped and murdered two teenage girls in Texas. Mexico wants the US to release this murdering bastard and fifty other illegal immigrants who have been convicted of murder and are now in prison on death row. Any member of Congress who allows these murderers to rape and kill our children is a sick bastard.

Eighty percent of the people in the country oppose same sex marriage. John McCain opposes a marriage amendment that protects marriage. This is the reason that many blacks jumped parties to vote for Bush. Sodom and Gomorrah have been unearthed on the southeast side of the Dead Sea. God calls homosexuality a sin (Lev. 18:22; 20:13). No homosexual will enter the kingdom of God (Rom. 1:18, 26, 27; I Cor. 6:9, 10). God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 18:20; 19:5, 24). Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination against religion. Open child abuse is allowed in public in San Francisco. A video of a recent Gay Fair in San Francisco shows homosexual men have oral sex and masturbating in the street in front of children. This is child abuse and a hate crime. John McCain does nothing to stop child abuse by homosexuals.

Military chaplains are now told they cannot say the name of Jesus. This violates the freedom of speech and the freedom of religion guaranteed by the Constitution. This discrimination, bigotry, hate, intolerance and censorship toward our soldiers must stop. If soldiers are going to give their lives for this country, then they must not be denied the right to say the name of Jesus. McCain is a member of the Armed Services Committee. Why is John McCain letting our soldiers be denied freedom of speech and freedom of religion? McCain disregarded the freedom of speech when he created McCain-Feingold. He violated his oath to uphold the Constitution. It is time for twenty million vets and their families to exact justice on this jackass who disrespects our troops.

John McCain was a lifer in the military. There are a lot of us who served in the military and also flew military aircraft. We left the military and became successful in the real world. The aircraft, naval vessels, missiles and satellites are designed by engineers in the real world. Lifers like John McCain are not part of this group. These lifers are told what to do and when to do it. They have a mommy that feeds them, clothes them, tells them what to do and even wipes their ass for them. This is why John McCain is supporting Shiite leaders in Iraq who are controlled by Iran. He is a stupid idiot like George Bush. Osama bin Laden is in western Pakistan and was never in Iraq. It is time to expose these jackasses who abuse our troops. John McCain is a stupid jackass.

[You know, why do I feel that this commenter is just waltzing around to various sites pasting this drivel in the box?]

Posted by: Fernando Beltran at February 9, 2008 2:46 PM

I'm not sure I understand what your point is concerning #3 Reversing Illegal Immigration. The problem with McCain isn't, for me, that he doesn't want to "reverse illegal immigration." It's that he wants to pass legislation which will, at the end of the day, do nothing to slow down illegal immigration, but will in fact, incentivize further illegal immigration in the future.

The achievable solution is (1) make a responsible and very public effort to control the border and (2) make employment of illegal immigrants both punishable (and enforce it) and prohibit illegal immigrant access to privileges of citizenship or legal residence. Once these disincentives are passed and institutionalised, THEN we can consider how to deal with existing and small (hopefully) quantity of future illegals.

In the meantime, the case is clear that real disincentives are effective in both reducing illegal immigrant inflow and convincing illegals to leave the U.S. The following is a quote from a recent NYT story:

"While it is too early to know for certain, a consensus is developing among economists, business people and immigration groups that the weakening economy coupled with recent curbs on illegal immigration are steering Hispanic immigrants out of the state.

The Arizona economy, heavily dependent on growth and a Latino work force, has been slowing for months. Meanwhile, the state has enacted one of the country’s toughest laws to punish employers who hire illegal immigrants, and the county sheriff here in Phoenix has been enforcing federal immigration laws by rounding up people living here illegally."

No, we are not fated to be swamped by a rising tide of illegal immigration from Mexico and Central America. But a consensus depends on formulating a realistic policy that creates disincentives to cross the border and, to the extent possible, to leave without seeming to be arbitrary and draconian in either intent or application.

Posted by: boqueronman at February 12, 2008 10:47 AM

ANOTHER MAN PUTTING HIS VOTE WHERE IT WILL DO THE MOST GOOD, FOR JOHN MCCAIN!

Posted by: Jimbo at May 22, 2008 8:27 PM

25 Deadly Sins - Just the Beginning of the John McCain Story

He publicly decries the influence of lobbyists in Washington, but has accepted more campaign contributions from lobbyists than any other candidate by far.
He has admitted on many occasions that he does not understand economics – but denies saying this during debates.
He voted against Bush tax cuts twice saying they “benefited the rich” – but now says it was because spending cuts weren’t attached to the bill.
He tried to push an amnesty bill down our throats (McCain-Kennedy) but denied it was amnesty for illegals because they would be required to pay a small fine to become citizens.
He was the only Republican member of the Keating Five savings and loan scandal, which cost taxpayers over $3 Billion.
He made over 32 propaganda tapes for the Viet Cong suggesting that American’s primarily targeted schools, hospitals, children.
He has been the main obstacle to bills in the senate related to helping families find missing POWs/MIAs from the Korean and Viet Nam wars.
He opposes drilling for oil in the Artic National Wildlife Refuge – although only 0.5% of ANWR land would potentially be used for oil production. He even put ANWR on the same footing as the Grand Canyon.
He authored the McCain-Feingold Bill, which severely limits free speech in campaigns.
He graduated 5th from the bottom of his class at the Naval Academy – wasting his time there while being supported by taxpayers.
He married his mistress after his 1st wife was severely injured in a car accident.
He has been at the head of normalizing relations with Viet Nam and China while his father-in-law became a major beer distributor in Viet Nam and China.
He was endorsed by the New York Times.
He is very “close friends” with Hillary Clinton, according to both him and Bill Clinton.
He told the Viet Cong the flight paths and targets of US aircraft, endangering the lives of his fellow airmen.
His campaign is run by lobbyists – He has more than double the number of lobbyists on his campaign staff than any other Republican or Democratic candidate.
His economic platform consists of cutting pork barrel spending – which sounds good, but will hardly have any impact on the US budget or economy.
He supports the carbon cap and tax approach to global warming, which will cost the US tens of trillions of dollars and make almost no impact (think India and China).
He has no understanding of business, business accounting, taxes, job creation on the private sector – his promise is essentially “your jobs aren’t coming back”.
He publicly rails against government earmarks and says he has never asked for earmarks – however he has asked for earmarks for Arizona on several occasions.
He constantly states that he was the only one supporting the troop surge in Iraq, although that has been proven to be blatantly false.
He has a hair trigger temper – he’s cursed at fellow senators in committee on various occasions.
He has had skin cancer twice and is 71 years old.
He was negotiating with the Democrats about switching parties and being John Kerry’s running mate – he denies this now, but its been confirmed by his own aides.
He is the Republican the liberal media wants to win the Republican nomination – they’ll have a field day with all the skeletons in his closet.

Bonus 1 – He was less conservative than 78% of other Republicans in the senate (American Conservative Union).

Bonus II – Helped form the Gang of 14 to further stick it to Republicans.


Posted by: MP at September 6, 2008 4:43 PM

25 Deadly Sins - Just the Beginning of the John McCain Story

He publicly decries the influence of lobbyists in Washington, but has accepted more campaign contributions from lobbyists than any other candidate by far.
He has admitted on many occasions that he does not understand economics – but denies saying this during debates.
He voted against Bush tax cuts twice saying they “benefited the rich” – but now says it was because spending cuts weren’t attached to the bill.
He tried to push an amnesty bill down our throats (McCain-Kennedy) but denied it was amnesty for illegals because they would be required to pay a small fine to become citizens.
He was the only Republican member of the Keating Five savings and loan scandal, which cost taxpayers over $3 Billion.
He made over 32 propaganda tapes for the Viet Cong suggesting that American’s primarily targeted schools, hospitals, children.
He has been the main obstacle to bills in the senate related to helping families find missing POWs/MIAs from the Korean and Viet Nam wars.
He opposes drilling for oil in the Artic National Wildlife Refuge – although only 0.5% of ANWR land would potentially be used for oil production. He even put ANWR on the same footing as the Grand Canyon.
He authored the McCain-Feingold Bill, which severely limits free speech in campaigns.
He graduated 5th from the bottom of his class at the Naval Academy – wasting his time there while being supported by taxpayers.
He married his mistress after his 1st wife was severely injured in a car accident.
He has been at the head of normalizing relations with Viet Nam and China while his father-in-law became a major beer distributor in Viet Nam and China.
He was endorsed by the New York Times.
He is very “close friends” with Hillary Clinton, according to both him and Bill Clinton.
He told the Viet Cong the flight paths and targets of US aircraft, endangering the lives of his fellow airmen.
His campaign is run by lobbyists – He has more than double the number of lobbyists on his campaign staff than any other Republican or Democratic candidate.
His economic platform consists of cutting pork barrel spending – which sounds good, but will hardly have any impact on the US budget or economy.
He supports the carbon cap and tax approach to global warming, which will cost the US tens of trillions of dollars and make almost no impact (think India and China).
He has no understanding of business, business accounting, taxes, job creation on the private sector – his promise is essentially “your jobs aren’t coming back”.
He publicly rails against government earmarks and says he has never asked for earmarks – however he has asked for earmarks for Arizona on several occasions.
He constantly states that he was the only one supporting the troop surge in Iraq, although that has been proven to be blatantly false.
He has a hair trigger temper – he’s cursed at fellow senators in committee on various occasions.
He has had skin cancer twice and is 71 years old.
He was negotiating with the Democrats about switching parties and being John Kerry’s running mate – he denies this now, but its been confirmed by his own aides.
He is the Republican the liberal media wants to win the Republican nomination – they’ll have a field day with all the skeletons in his closet.

Bonus 1 – He was less conservative than 78% of other Republicans in the senate (American Conservative Union).

Bonus II – Helped form the Gang of 14 to further stick it to Republicans.


Posted by: MP at September 6, 2008 4:44 PM

I LOVE JOHN MCCAIN!

Posted by: MP at September 12, 2008 5:03 PM

McCAIN HAS NOT DELIVERED ON HIS PROMISES TO VETERANS

Union members respect Sen. John McCain’s service to our country. When will he start respecting ours? Although McCain talks about his support for veterans, he repeatedly votes against increased funding for veterans’ health care—and more. We call on John McCain to join us in supporting our veterans and working to turn around America.

McCAIN REPEATEDLY VOTED AGAINST VETERANS’ HEALTH BENEFITS
McCain Opposes the 21st Century GI Bill Because It Is Too Generous. McCain did not vote on the GI Bill that will provide better educational opportunities to veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, paying full tuition at in-state schools and living expenses for those who have served at least three years since the 9/11 attacks. McCain said he opposes the bill because he thinks the generous benefits would “encourage more people to leave the military.” (S.Amdt. 4803 to H.R. 2642, Vote 137, 5/22/08; Chattanooga Times Free Press, 6/2/08; Boston Globe, 5/23/08; ABCNews.com, 5/26/08)

McCain Voted Against Increased Funding for Veterans’ Health Care. Although McCain told voters at a campaign rally that improving veterans’ health care was his top domestic priority, he voted against increasing funding for veterans’ health care in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. (Greenville News, 12/12/2007; S.Amdt. 2745 to S.C.R. 95, Vote 40, 3/10/04; Senate S.C.R. 18, Vote 55, 3/16/05; S.Amdt. 3007 to S.C.R. 83, Vote 41, 3/14/06; H.R. 1591, Vote 126, 3/29/07)

Opposed an Assured Funding Stream for Veterans’ Health Care. McCain opposed providing an assured funding stream for veterans’ health care, taking into account annual changes in veterans’ population and inflation. (S.Amdt. 3141 to S.C.R. 83, Vote 63, 3/16/06)

McCain Voted Against Adding More Than $400 Million for Veterans’ Care. McCain was one of 13 Republicans to vote against providing an additional $430 million to the Department of Veterans Affairs for outpatient care and treatment for veterans. (S.Amdt. 3642 to H.R. 4939, Vote 98, 4/26/06)

Voted Against Establishing a $1 Billion Trust Fund for Military Health Facilities. McCain voted against establishing a $1 billion trust fund to improve military health facilities by refusing to repeal tax cuts for those making more than $1 million a year. (S.Amdt. 2735 to S.Amdt. 2707 to H.R. 4297, Vote 7, 2/2/06)

McCain Opposed $500 Million for Counseling Services for Veterans with Mental Disorders. McCain voted against an amendment to appropriate $500 million annually from 2006-2010 for counseling, mental health and rehabilitation services for veterans diagnosed with mental illness, posttraumatic stress disorder or substance abuse. (S. 2020, S.Amdt. 2634, Vote 343, 11/17/05)

McCain Voted in Support of Disabled Veterans Only 25 Percent of the Time from 2004-2005. While McCain claims he “has been a leading advocate” for veterans with disabilities, statistics show he supported the Disabled American Veterans’ interests only 25 percent of the time in 2004-2005. In 2006, that figure slipped to 20 percent of the time. (Project Vote Smart)

McCain Voted Against Providing Automatic Cost-of-Living Adjustments to Veterans. McCain voted against providing automatic annual cost-ofliving adjustments for certain veterans’ benefits. (S. 869, Vote 259, 11/20/91)

INCLUDING BETTER ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE FOR GUARD AND RESERVISTS
McCain Opposed Increasing Spending on TRICARE and Giving Greater Access to National Guard and Reservists. Although his campaign website devotes a large section to veterans issues, including expanding benefits for reservists and members of the National Guard, McCain voted against increasing spending on the TRICARE program by $20.3 billion over 10 years to give members of the National Guard and Reserves and their families greater access to the health care program. The increase would be offset by a reduction in tax cuts for the wealthy. (www.johnmccain.com/Informing/ Issues/9cb5d2aa-f237-464e-9cdf-a5ad32771b9f.htm; S.Amdt. 324 to S.C.R. 23, Vote 81, 3/25/03)

McCAIN ALSO VOTED TO OUTSOURCE JOBS AT MILITARY FACILITIES
McCain Supported Outsourcing VA Jobs. McCain opposed an amendment that would have prevented the Department of Veterans Affairs from outsourcing jobs, many held by blue-collar veterans, without first giving the workers a chance to compete. (S.Amdt. 2673 to H.R. 2642, Vote 315, 9/6/07)

He Also Supported Outsourcing at Walter Reed. McCain opposed an amendment to prevent the outsourcing of 350 federal employee jobs at Walter Reed Army Medical Center—outsourcing that contributed to the scandalous treatment of veterans at Walter Reed that McCain called a “disgrace.” (S.Amdt. 4895 to H.R. 5631, Vote 234, 9/6/06; Speech to VFW in Kansas City, Mo., 4/4/08)

AND HE REPEATEDLY VOTED AGAINST FUNDING FOR THE VETERANS AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT
2003: McCain Voted Against $122.7 Billion for Department of Veterans Affairs. McCain voted against an appropriations bill that included $122.7 billion in fiscal 2004 for the Department of Veterans Affairs, Housing and Urban Development and other related agencies. (H.R. 2861, Vote 449, 11/12/03)

2001: McCain Voted Against $51 Billion in Veterans Funding. McCain was one of five senators to vote against the bill and seven to vote against the conference report that provided $51.1 billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs, as well as funding for the federal housing, environmental and emergency management agencies and NASA. (H.R. 2620, Vote 334, 11/8/01; Vote 269, 8/2/01)

2000: McCain Voted Against $47 Billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs. McCain was one of eight senators to vote against a bill that provided $47 billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs. (H.R. 4635, Vote 272, 10/12/00)

1999: McCain Voted Against $44.3 Billion for Veterans Programs. McCain was one of five senators to vote against a bill providing $44.3 billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs, plus funding for other federal agencies. (H.R. 2684, Vote 328, 10/15/99)

1996: McCain Voted Against a $13 Billion Increase in Funding for Veterans Programs. McCain voted against an amendment to increase spending on veterans programs by $13 billion. (S.C.R. 57, Vote 115, 5/16/96)

1995: McCain Voted to Underfund Department of Veterans Affairs. McCain voted for an appropriations bill that underfunded the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development by $8.9 billion. (H.R. 2099, Vote 470, 9/27/95)

1995: McCain Voted Against Closing Tax Loopholes to Increase Veterans Funding by $74 Million. McCain voted against eliminating tax breaks and closing tax loopholes to provide revenue to restore some of the proposed cuts in Veterans Affairs spending. (S.C.R. 13, Vote 226, 5/25/95)

1994: McCain Voted Against Funding the Department of Veterans Affairs. McCain was one of nine senators to vote against appropriating $90 billion in budget authority for the Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development departments. (H.R. 4624, Vote 306, 9/27/94)

Posted by: MP at September 12, 2008 5:07 PM

Interview with McCain November 1967

FBIS 50 FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY

Hanoi Correspondent's Dispatch in English to Prensa Latina Havana 1205 CMT 9 Nov 67

(Text) Nhan Dan on 9 November carries a story about the U.S. Pilot McCain who was captured on 26 October after his plane had been shot down over Hanoi.

His flight on a raid against Hanoi was the first for him and his 23rd raiding flight over North Vietnam. McCain was very afraid of the (?Intense) antiaircraft network in Hanoi, which is not only (?Intense) but very accurate. That is why it became important. Three out of 25 aircraft of his group were downed. The United States in not able to bear it if out of every 25 aircraft three are downed, he said.

McCain stated: There is not any doubt for me; things are taking place in a favorable way for North Vietnam. In particular world opinion. At present, the United states is (?virtually) standing alone.'

[end of text]

Interview with McCain

Hanoi VNA International Service in French 1339 GMT 9 Nov 67 B

(Interview of American POW LT CDR John Sidney McCain published in 9 November Nhan Dan)

(Excerpt) Hanoi 9 November --/Passage Omitted on circumstances behind McCain's transfer from carrier Forrestal to Oriskany and his capture on Truc Bach Lake on 26 October 1967)

To a question of the correspondent, McCain answered: 'My assignment to the Oriskany, I told myself, was due to serious losses in pilots which were sustained by this aircraft carrier (due to its raids over North Vietnam territory--VNA) and which necessitated replacements. From 10 to 12 pilots were transferred like me from the Forrestal to the Oriskany. Before I was shot down we had made several sorties. Altogether I made about 23 flights over North Vietnam.'

McCain admitted that he participated five or six times in the attacks on the Haiphong sector.

Fear still clearly showed on his face when he recalled his disastrous sortie on 26 October against Hanoi. 'The briefing was held in the morning,' he said. 'That's right. I remember that it was the morning that they told me of the situation and the plan of the raid, which should take place about noon. A reconnaissance officer explained this plan to me. They showed me photographs of my target marked out the paths to be followed by the Oriskany at this point. They pointed out to me a number of antiaircraft positions near Hanoi and a number of possible rocket positions, the position of our rescue ships, the radio frequency, the composition of the flight, and so forth. Upon arrival near the target, our formation with six bombers, would mount the attack according to the following order: I would be number three, and the chief of the formation, number one. Each pilot would have to approach the target from a different direction, the choice of which would be left to [undecipherable].

'While moving toward the target, we stumbled over a very dense network of fire, a very powerful riposte. A few rockets were seen. Our chief turned to approach the target and I followed him at a distance. At the time when I was preparing to drop my bombs--I did not know whether or not I could drop them because things were happening too fast--I heard a terrible explosion which shook my plane and sent it toward the ground. It was hit so violently that I was thrown on my back and went straight toward the ground in this posture. I tried to pull the direction-stick I do not know at what [undecipherable]

Naturally I felt buffeting because my bailing out was made at the time when the plane was falling too fast. When the parachute opened I looked down and found out I was going to fall into a lake. I was really lucky to be able to fall into a lake. All around me bombs were exploding while rockets and antiaircraft shells were streaking through the sky. I hit the lake and went to the bottom. While trying to return to the surface, I was seized by Vietnamese and pushed to the bank of the lake. They disarmed me and brought me to prison.' 'What do you think of Hanoi's fire barrage?' asked the Nhan Dan Correspondent.

McCain cried out: 'Very intense, very accurate. When a fire barrage is so accurate, one has to reckon with it. You are excellent artillerymen. Naturally, I have never seen such a fire network, because it was the first time I flew over Hanoi.'

'Were the pilots who had flown over Hanoi afraid of the firepower from the ground?'

'Yes, certainly!' McCain said, 'How lucky are those who do not have to come often to the Hanoi Sector. Very dangerous! Because they could very well be shot down, hit, something that no one wants! When I arrived near my target I saw two rockets streaking by my side, and it was terrible to see. They flew very fast, very strongly.'

Suddenly the air pirate was silent as if still obsessed by the memory of his disasterous sortie.

'For me,' he concluded, 'there is no longer any doubt. Things are taking place in a favorable opinion. The United States at present seems to be standing alone, so much is its isolation.'

[end of text]


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HANOI VNA INTERNATIONAL SERVICE IN FRENCH 1339 GMT 9 NOV 67 B
(FURTHER B091315 HANOI CORRESPONDENT'S DISPATCH ENGLISH DRENSA LATINA 091205--SHORT VERSION NHAN DAN)
(FIRST OF TWO TAKES--INTERVIEW WITH MCCAIN)
(TEXT) HANOI, 9 NINE NOVEMBER--NHAN DAN TODAY PUBLISHED ANSWERS TO QUESTIONS BY ONE OF ITS CORRESPONDENTS MADE BY A U.S. AIR PIRATE DETAINED IN NORTH VIETNAM.
HE IS LT CDR JOHN SIDNEY MCCAIN OF THE U.S. NAVY, SERIAL NUMBER 624787 SIXTWOFOURSEVENEIGHTSEVEN, CAPTURE IN THZ TRUC BACH LAKE IN HANOI 26 TWOSIX OCTOBER 1967 ONENINESIXSEVEN AFTER HE HAD BAILED OUT FROM HIS PLANE IN FLAMES. IT WAS FROM THE AIRCRAFT CARRIER U.S. ORISKANY THAT HE TOOK OFF FOR THE LAST TIME. BEFORE BEING TRANSFERRED TO THIS SHIP IN OCTOBER 1967 ONENINESIXSEVEN, HE WAS AMONG THE PERSONNEL FLYING FROM ANOTHER AIRCRAFT CARRIER, THE FORESTAL. BECAUSE THE LATTER SUSTAINED CONSIDERABLE LOSSES DUE TO A TERRIBLE EXPLOSION WHICH HAPPENED 29 TWONINE JULY 1967 ONENINESIXSEVEN, MCCAIN COULD TAKE LEAVE IN HIS NATIVE COUNTRY AS ONE OF

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THE SURVIVORS. HOWEVER, HE COULD SPEND ONLY A FEW DAYS WITH HIS FAMILY, BECAUSE HE SOON RECEIVED AN ORDER TO REPORT URGENTLY TO THE ORISKANY WHERE HE WAS TO BE ASSIGNED. DURING HIS LEAVE, HE RELATED, HIS WIFE AND EVEN HIS FATHER IN HIS LETTERS ADVISED HIM TO BE EXTREMELY CAREFUL BECAUSE A GREAT NUMBER OF COFFINS OF AMERICAN MILITARYMEN KILLED IN VIETNAM HAD ALREADY ARRIVED IN THE UNITED STATES.
TO A QUESTION OF THE CORRESPONDENT, MCCAIN ANSWERED: 'MY ASSIGNMENT TO THE ORISKANY, I TOLD MYSELF, WAS DIE TO SERIOUS LOSSES IN PILOTS, WHICH WERE SUSTAINED BY THIS AIRCRAFT CARRIER (DUE TO ITS RAIDS ON THE NORTH VIETNAM TERRITORY--VNA)(BRACKETS AS TRANSMITTED) AND WHICH NECESSITATED REPLACEMENTS. FROM 10 ONEZERO TO 12 ONETWO PILOTS WERE TRANSFERRED LIKE ME FROM THE FORESTAL TO THE ORISKANY. BEFORE I WAS SHOT DOWN WE HAD MADE SEVERAL SORTIE. ALTOGETHER I MADE ABOUT 23 TWOTHREE FLIGHTS OVER NORTH VIETNAM.'
MCCAIN ADMITTED THAT HE PARTICIPATED FIVE OR SIX TIMES IN THE ATTACKS IN THE HAIPHONG SECTOR.
FEAR STILL CLEARLY SHOWED ON HIS FACE WHEN HE RECALLED HIS DISADTROUS SORTIE ON 26 TWOSIX OCTOBER AGAIN HANOI. 'THE BRIEFING WAS HELD IN THE MORNING,' HE SAID. 'THAT'S RIGHT. I REMEMBER THAT IT WAS IN THE MORNING THAT THEY TOLD ME OF THE SITUATION AND THE PLAN OF THE RAID, WHICH SHOULD TAKE PLACE ABOUT NOON. A RECONNAISSANCE OFFICER EXPLAINED THIS PLAN TO ME. THEY SHOWED ME PHOTOGRAPHS OF MY TARGET AND MARKED OUT THE PATHS TO BE FOLLOWED BY THE ORISKANY AT THIS POINT. THEY POINTED OUT TO ME A NUMBER OF ANTIAIRCRAFT POSITIONS NEAR HANOI AND A NUMBER OF POSSIBLE ROCKET POSITIONS, THE POSITION OF OUR RESCUE SHIPS, THE RADIO FREQUENCY, THE COMPOSITION OF THE FLIGHT, AND SO FORTH. UPON ARRIVAL NEAR THE TARGET, OUR FORMTION WUTH SIX BOMBERS, WOULD MOUNT THE ATTACK ACCORDING TO THE FOLLOWING ORDER: I WOULD BE NUMBER THREE, AND THE CHIEF OF THE FORMATION, NUMBER ONE. EACH PILOT WOULD HAVE TO APPROACH THE TARGET FROM A DIFFERENT DIRECTION THE CHOICE OF WHICH WOULD BE LEFT TO HIM.
'WHILE MOVING TOWARD THE TARGET, WE STUMBLED OVER A VERY DENSE NETWORK OF FIRE, A VERY POWERFUL RIPOSTE. A FEW ROCKETS WERE SEEN. OUR CHIEF TURNED TO APPROACH THE TARGET AND I FOLLOWED HIM AT A DISTANCE. AT THE TIME WHEN I WAS PREPARING TO DROP MY BOMBS--I DID NOT KNOW WHETHER OR NOT I COULD DROP THEM, BECAUSE

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THINGS WERE HAPPENING TOO FAST--I HEARD A TERRIBLE EXPLOSION WHICH SHOOK MY PLANE AND SENT IT TOWARD THE GROUN. IT WAS HIT SO VIOLENTLY THAT I WAS THROWN ON MY BACK AND WENT STRAIGHT TOWARD THE GROUND IN THIS POSTURE. I TRIED TO PULL THE DIRECTION-STICK TO REESTABLISH THE BALANCE OF MY PLANE BUT IT NO LONGER RESPONDED TO ME.
I CONTINUED TO DESCENT AT A DIZZY SPEED. THEN, I EJECTED MYSELF. I DO NOT KNOW AT WHAT ALTITUDE, BUT IT MUST HAVE BEEN VERY LOW. NATURALLY I FELT BUFFETTING BECAUSE MY BAILING OUT WAS MADE AT THE TIME WHEN THE PLANE WAS FALLING TOO FAST. WHEN THE PARACHUTE OPENED, I LOOKED DOWN AND FOUND OUT THAT I WAS GOING TO FALL INTO A LAKE. I WAS REALLY LUCKY TO BE ABLE TO FALL INTO A LAKE. ALL AROUND ME BOMBS WERE EXPLODING WHILE ROCKETS AND ANTIAIRCRAFT SHELLS WERE STREAKING THROUGH THE SKY. I HIT THE LAKE AND WENT TO THE BOTTOM. WHILE TRYING TO RETURN TO THE SURFACE, I WAS SEIZED BY VIETNAMESE AND PUSHED TO THE BANK OF THE LAKE. THEY DISARMED ME AND BROUGHT ME TO PRISON.' MORE 0913398 [ BLACKED OUT ] 11/1933Z
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31 October 1967
"Hanoi in English to American Servicemen in South Vietnam
[Talk: 'From the Pacific to Truc Bach Lake']


[Text]" In his newest step of war escalation--successive air strikes at Hanoi city these days--Mr. Johnson has wasted scores of U.S. aircraft and pilots.

"Adding to the ever longer list of American pilots captured over North Vietnam was a series of newcomers. John Sydney McCain was one of them. Who is he? A U.S. Navy lieutenant commander. Last Thursday, 26 October, he took off from the carrier Oriksany for a raiding mission against Hanoi city. Unfortunately for him, the jetplane he piloted was one of the 10 knocked out of Hanoi's sky. He tried in vain to evade the deadly accurate antiaircraft barrage of fire of this city. A surface-to-air missile shot down his jet on the spot. He bailed out and was captured on the surface of Truc Bach Lake right in the heart of the DRV capital.

"What were the feats of arms which McCain achieved? Foreign correspondents in Hanoi saw with their eyes civilian dwelling houses destroyed and Hanoi's women, old folks, and children killed by steel-pellet bombs dropped from McCain's aircraft and those of his colleagues.

"Lt Com John Sydney McCain nearly perished in the conflagration that swept the flight deck of the U.S. carrier Forrestal last July. He also narrowly escaped death in Haiphong the Sunday before last but this time what must happen has happened. There is no future in it.

"McCain was married in 1965 to [name indistinct] and has a 10-month-old daughter. Surely he loved his wife and child. Then why did he fly here dropping bombs on the necks of the Vietnamese women and children?

"The killing he was ordered to do in Vietnam has aroused indignation among the world's peoples. What glory had he brought by his job to his father, Adm. John S McCain Jr., commander in chief of U.S. Naval Forces in Europe? His grandfather, Adm. John S. McCain, commander of all aircraft carriers in the Pacific in World War II, participated in a just war against the Japanese forces. But nowadays Lt. Com. McCain is participating in an unjust war, the most unpopular one in U.S. history and mankind's history too. This is Johnson's war to enslave the Vietnamese people.

"From the Pacific to Truc Bach Lake, McCain has brought no reputation for his family in the United States. The one who is smearing McCain's family honor is also smearing the honor of Washington's United States of America. He is Lyndon B. Johnson."

[end of text]

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(ARTICLE IN SERIES WRITTEN BY 'PROMINENT' FRENCH TELEVISION REPORTER FRANCOIS CHALAIS--AN EXCLUSIVE TO L'ORIENT--TITLED 'LIFE IN HANOI' AND DESCRIBING THE REPORTER'S ONE-MONTH VISIT TO NORTH VIETNAM. DATE IF VISIT NOTT GIVEN. THE SERIES WAS ANNOUNCED 25 DECEMBER AND BEGAN 27 DECEMBER. THIS INSTALLMENT IS TITLED 'THE U.S. PRISONERS DO NOTT UNDERSTAND')


(EXCERPTS)(PASSAGE OMITTED) I MZT SOME AMERICANS IN HANOI--PILOTS OFTEN WOUNDED, HAVING EJECTED FROM THEIR PLANES. THEY--LIKE THE VIETNAMESE THEY ARE MASSACRING, BUT FOR DIFFERENT REASONS--DO NOTT UNDERSTAND WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THEM. HERE ARE SOME EXAMPLES OF THEIR THINKING:


'WE WILL REBUILD YOUR BRIDGES.' TO THIS PILOT, SOMEONE HAS BROUGHT PICTURES OF DESTROYED BRIDGES. DO YOU RECOGNIZE THESE BRIDGES? YES, SAYS THE PILOT, THIS SHOULD HAVE BEEN MY WORK. (PASSAGE OMITTED) THEN HE IS SHOWN THE SAME PICTURES, TAKEN A SHORT WHILE BEFORE, THE FIRST FIRST PICTURES--ED.) THESE PICTURES SHOW MANY BODIES--SEVERAL 9S83-SCATTERED AROUND THE BRIDGE. IS THIS ALSO YOUR WORK? THE AMERICAN HESITATES, THEN SAYS: IT IS NOTT MY FAULT IF PEOPLE ARE FOOLISH ENOUGH TO PASS OVER BRIDGES WHILE I AM BOMBING. SOON HE ADDS: MOREOVER I DO NOTT UNDERSTAND YOU. YOU HAVE ONLY TO STOP THE

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WAR: AS SOON AS YOU DO SO WE WILL REBUILD YOUR BRIDGES. (PASSAGE OMITTED) MY FATHER IS A MULTIMILLIONAIRE. I WILL PAY YOU FOR THEM. (PASSAGE OMMITTED)
ANOTHER PILOT IS INJURED. THE DOCTOR ASKS HIM HOW HE FEELS. HE REPLIES: WELL. BUT I MUST TELL YOU SOMETHING DOCTOR. YOU ARE ALL QUITE KIND, BUT YOUR MEDICINES ARE WORTHLESS. ONLY AMERICAN MEDICINES ARE GOOD. YOU ARE DOING WHATEVER YOU CAN, BUT COMPARED TO THE U.S. DOCTORS, YOU ARE ONLY BEGINNERS. THEREFORE THIS IS WHAT I SUGGEST: WE HAVE CLARKIBASE IN THE PHILIPPINES WHERE THEY HAVE EVERYTHING THAT IS NEEDED. YOU LET ME GO THERE AND AS SOON AS I RECOVER I WILL RETURN HERE TO GIVE MYSELF UP. (PASSAGE OMITTED)
DOWNED U.S. PILOTS ENERGETICALLY REFUSE TO ADMIT THAT THEY MAY HAVE BEEN SHOT DOWN BY VIETNAMESE PILOTS--AN INDERIOR SPECIES IN THE MINDS OF AMERICAN PILOTS. NO, THEY WERE HIT BY SAM MISSILES OR BY ANTIAIRCRAFT BATTERIES--BUT NEVER BY MIG PILOTS. ONE PILOT, FOR EXAMPLE, IS GIVEN ALL THE PROOF THAT HE WAS HIT BY ONE OF HIS VIETNAMESE COUNTERPARTS. HE DEFENDS HIMSELF VEHEMENTLY. NEVERTHELESS, HHERE ARE IRREFUTABLE PICTURES. THEY EVEN BRING TO HIS HOSPITAL BED THE PILOT WHO DOWNED HIS PLANE. THE AMERICAN STILL HESITATES, THEN SAYS: I WOULD NEVER BELIEVED IT, BUT EVIDENTLY IT IS AS YOU SAY. (PASSAGE OMITTED)
A MEETING WHICH WILL LEAVE ITS MARK ON MY LIFE:
MY MEETING WITH JOHN SIDNEY MCCAIN WAS CERTAINLY ONE OF THOSE MEETINGS WHICH AFFECT ME MOST PROFOUNDLY FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE. I HAD ASKED THE NORTH VIETNAMESE AUTHORITIES TO ALLOW ME TO PERSONALLY INTERROGATE AN AMERICAN PRISONER. THEY AUTHORIZED ME TO DO SO. WHEN NIGHT FELL, THEY TOOK ME--WITHOUT PRECAUTIONS OR MYSTERY--TO A HOSPITAL NEAR THE GIA LAM AIRPORT RESERVED FOR THE MILITARY (PASSAGE OMITTED) THE OFFICER WHO RECEIVES ME BEGINS: I ASK YOU NOTT TO ASK ANY QUESTIONS OF POLITICAL NATURE. IF THIS MAN REPLIES IN A WAY UNFAVORABLE TO US, THEY WILL NOTT HESITATE TO SPEAK OF 'BRAINWASHING' AND CONCLUDE THAT WE THREATENED HIM. (PASSAGE OMITTED)
THIS JOHN SIDNEY MCCAIN IS NOTT AN ORDINARY PRISONER. HIS FATHER IS NONE OTHER THAN ADMIRAL EDMOND JOHN MCCAIN, COMMANDER IN CHIEF OF U.S. NAVAL FORCES IN EUROPE. (PASSAGE OMITTED) IN A WEAK VOICE, HE RELATES HIS STORY TO ME: I WAS CARRYING OUT A BOMBING MISSION, MY 23D TWENTYTHIRD RAID, OVER HANOI. IT WAS THEN

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THAT I WAS HIT. I WANTED TO EJECT BUT WHILE DOING SO I BROKE BOTH ARMS AND MY RIGHT THIGH. UNCONSCIOUS I FELL IN A LAKE. SOME VIETNAMESE JUMPED INTO THE WATER AND PULLED ME OUT. LATER I LEARNED THERE MUST HAVE BEEN ABOUT 12 OF THEM. THEY IMMEDIATELY TOOK ME TO HOSPITAL, IN CONDITION TWO INCHES AWAY FROM DEATH. A DOCTOR OPERATED ON MY THIGHT. OTHERS AT THE SAME TIME DEALT WITH MY ARMS.
HOW ARE YOU TREATED HERE?
VERY WELL. EVERYBODY IS VERY NICE TO ME.
HOW IS THE FOOD?
HE SMILES FEEBLY. OBVIOUSLY, THE LEAST REACTION HURTS HIM. THIS ISN'T PARIS, BUT IT IS ALRIGHT.
DO YOU HAVE SOMETHING TO READ?
THEY HAVE SUGGESTED THAT I READ, BUT MY HANDS ARE UNABLE TO HOLD EVEN A NEWSPAPER.
HIS CIGARETTE HAS GONE OUT. HE TALKS TO ME ABOUT HIS WIFE WHO LIVES IN JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA, AND ABOUT HIS THREE CHILDREN. AND NOW HE ADDRESSES HIS FAMILY: I KNOW THAT THIS IS GOING TO TURN OUT WELL. I HOPE THAT I WILL SEE YOU SOON. I WILL BE WELL. THIS IS AL PECEPEATS: THIS IS ALL. (PASSAGE OMITTED)
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===================


Translation of
Memorial at Truc Bach Lake


"Here on 26 October 1967 at Truc Bach Lake in the capital city of Ha Noi John Sidney McCain was shot out of the sky in his A4 aircraft by local (militia?) citizens defending Yen Phu.
There were 10 other planes shot down on the same day."


During the month of October, 1997, some 30 years after the shootdown of John McCain, some 24 years after McCain returned to the United States, a 60 Minutes interview with Mike Wallace aired on CBS. John McCain, being herald as the potential GOPs nominee for President in the year 2,000, stated that he was a war criminal because he had bombed, "innocent women and children."

Even if you overlook the Keating 5 scandal, his links to organize crime in Arizona, his philandering on his first wife, and even if you overlook his stance on lifting the US imposed trade embargo against Vietnam against the wishes of the majority of the POW/MIA families; and even if you overlook his stance on normalization in direct conflict with the POW/MIA Families; and even if you overlook the way he gutted a bill in the Senate that would protect future potential American Prisoners of War; you cannot overlook the fact that John McCain is so influenced by his time spent in captivity that he still considers himself an "air pirate" which is how the North Vietnamese referred to captured American pilots.

I am a war criminal; I bombed innocent women and children.

This is not a man who we can trust to make some tough decisions with regard to Southeast Asia, which all indicators point toward the fact that we will be in tough negotiations with in the coming years with regard to protection of American business interests in Vietnam, the US Navy's interest in leasing Cam Ranh Bay, etc.

We need someone who will be able to look across the table at their former enemies and not feel guilt.

And not feel like a war criminal.

Posted by: MP at September 12, 2008 5:15 PM