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The Asylum

Welcome to the Asylum. This is a site devoted to politics and current events in America, and around the globe. The THREE lunatics posting here are unabashed conservatives that go after the liberal lies and deceit prevalent in the debate of the day. We'd like to add that the views expressed here do not reflect the views of other inmates, nor were any inmates harmed in the creation of this site.

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

EJ Dionne, Jr. gets it right on McCain, but for the wrong reasons

When I spotted EJ's column link on Hugh';s site I thought "Wow. EJ finally grew a brain." Too bad that was a teensy bit overrated. His piece does well to identify that John McCain's campaign is deader than a doornail, but he completely misses the reasons why:

John McCain's 2000 campaign for president failed, but it was an unruly and joyous romp. His campaign this time feels quite different: carefully planned, meticulously calculated -- and a tragedy.

Tragedy, not a word to be invoked lightly, typically involves a morally admirable person who struggles toward a goal and experiences suffering as his own choices collide with forces unleashed by the gods or by circumstance. The distinguished theater critic Walter Kerr once wrote that the tragic man "is free to free himself of obeisance to any power." ...

... There is another tragic element: McCain suffered mightily during the 2000 presidential primaries at the hands of George W. Bush's political machine, which smeared the senator on everything from his time as a prisoner of war in Vietnam to the racial identity of his adopted daughter.

Yet McCain is being dragged down now by his loyalty to the very same Bush and his policies in Iraq. Earlier in the war, McCain was a fierce critic of the president's strategy and tactics. But those criticisms count for little now. Bush destroyed McCain's candidacy by design the first time and is smothering him by association this time. ...

... In deciding to make up with the president, McCain's chosen vehicle was Iraq, on which he genuinely views success in the same terms as the administration. He won over a share of Bush fundraisers (who have failed him up to now) and some Bush operatives, but significant parts of the Bush political family went over to Romney, joining at least a few of McCain's 2000 enthusiasts.

In truth, McCain's only route to the nomination was not to appease his former enemies but to scare them. He had to be the one person standing between them and the petrifying prospect of a Hillary Clinton or a Barack Obama presidency. Everything right-wingers loathed about the John McCain of 2000 describes what his party most needs now.

His independence from Bush (whom he once called a "Pat Robertson Republican") would be an asset in light of the president's manifest failures. His reform enthusiasms stand as the perfect antidote to the corruption of the past Republican Congress. His old straight talk would be such a relief after so much prevarication and fabrication from this White House.

Now aside from the low-blow slaps, like accusing the current administration of fabrications, and the "whisper campaign of 2000," EJ decides to hang McCain's support of the war as the key issue killing his candidacy. Like the midterm elections of 2006, the war figures into this equation, but not as much as every one of the talking-head pundits proclaim it to be.

John McCain's candidacy this time around was done before it was even begun, and it had little to do with the war. It did have a great deal to do with the fact that the "maverick" senator from our state has been so pi$$ed at the nation for choosing President Bush over him in 2000 that he has lashed out at the very people he claims to represent. His first step in "retaliating" against the nation was McCain-Feingold, and a serious undermining of the First Amendment.

Toss in the tax cuts -- one in 2001 and one in 2003 -- that he refused to vote for, and you have strike two. In 2004, he made two crucial errors that the base remembers vividly. He didn't immediately quash the talk of possibly being John Kerry's veep on his ticket, and even though he camapigned for the president's reelection, he wasted little time on the weekends ripping him up over his strategy in Iraq.

The pièce de résistance of McCain's recent political career that killed him was the orchestration of the Gang of 14 deal, and the continued existence of filibusters over judicial nominees. Rather than allowing the GOP majority in the Senate to break the unconstitutional practice of Democrat filibusters on qualified judicial picks -- nominees chosen by the president under his Article II powers -- John McCain decided to cut the party off at the knees, and sign onto a retarded deal with the Democrats in the Senate. Taking the six RINOs with him, they ensured that the filibuster would be saved for their ideological foes. In doing so, seven other highly-qualified jurists were tossed overboard and denied their rightful vote, all in the name of "bipartisanship," as John McCain described it after the deal was cut.

EJ still lacks a brain to identify what is killing John McCain. After being kicked in the teeth for so long by the senior senator from our state, the base is done with him. $12.5 million in fundraising may seem like a lot to many people, but it's barely warrants a drop in the bucket for presidential elections. Why is that? The base doesn't trust him nor are they too fond of him. Now he's revamping his camapign and his fundraising apparatus. Look, the other day we received a phone call from a McCain staffer asking for a donation to his campaign.

I politely explained that I would not contribute to his camapign. When the nice lady on the other ened of the phone asked me why, and I rattled off the above litany, her response was less than thrilling, to say the least. Simply put, after listening to what I had to say, she simply asked the following:

"So, you can't put aside your differences and contribute to the man who will be the next president of the United States?"

At that point, I hung up the phone. That's a pretty sad comeback for someone who was politely read a riot act. Worse, it shows the people working for him are willing to excuse his missteps. That's great for him. He seems to have sheeple working for him that are willing to excuse him. Not us, and certainly not the base. That's where his problem lies. McCain's still working on "fixing it," but he's obvioulsy too obtuse to understand what "it" is that he has to fix, and he lacks the time and patience to accomplish the goal.

Publius II


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