Rolling Stone article about John McCain

I used to support John McCain, back in 2000, based on his recent record at the time. I have not been happy with the changes in his platform since then and now support Obama, but wished that McCain of 2000 would run in this election so I’d have an alternative to Obama.

This changed after reading the following article.

http://www.rollingstone.com/news/coverstory/make_believe_maverick_the_real_john_mccain/page/1

It seems the McCain of 2008 is the “real” McCain and his image in 2000 was a cynical ploy to seem like a, well, maverick. I was not aware of his voting record in his earlier days in government, or of the depth of the scandal surrounding him, or how he misrepresented his time as a P.O.W. For instance, I always believed his story that he was offered a chance to go home because he was the son of an admiral, and he turned it down for moral reasons. It turns out this offer was made to several P.O.W.s who were imprisoned with McCain, and they ALL turned it down, because it was contingent on making statements for propaganda purposes that would have got them court martialed after their release.

I know Rolling Stone is not unbiased in this race, but the article appears well-cited and there is a LOT of negative stuff about McCain that I had never heard of. I am now even more afraid of his becoming president.

Oh yeah! Johnny Mac’s been a jerk all his life.

And while you can say Obama “inhaled,” McCain “talked” after torture. A perfectly loathesome creature.

Brilliant timing.

If you’re saying that talking after being repeatedly tortured shows any kind of moral turpitude, I have to strongly disagree. Or am I being whooshed?

What a hatchet job. This will be a non-issue or will backfire badly. The Rolling Stone’s editorial voice is extreme to the point of being laughable. This is disgraceful journalism, full of innuendo and slanted “facts.”

Sure he was captured and tortured in the service of his country, but it wasn’t as bad as he made it out to be, they say. Nobody really saw him being tortured, for the most part. He turned down the offer of early release, but so did other guys, so it’s really not such a big deal. And there was this guy who heard him say he wanted to get laid. Plus other “reports” along the same lines.

Well, that’s good enough for me. Yep, this will play well in middle America. VFW posts will begin Obama rallies all over the country soon in response, I’m sure. :rolleyes:

I pray that the Dems pick up this message. But Obama has been very smart with regard to McCain’s service thus far, and I predict that will not change. Whatever substance exists with regard to McCain in this piece–assuming there is any–will be splashed by the spray of toxic crap from the rest of the article, rendering it all irrelevant at worst and “lies by association” at best.

I don’t think it’s shameful that he talked under torture. I don’t think his captivity is anything to brag about, though. Like the guy who didn’t talk under torture said, he was just one of about 600 guys, no braver than any of the rest. He did volunteer helpful information to get medical care, but I probably would have in the same place.

That’s a small portion of the article though, you should read it.

A real “hatchet job” with much of the information taken from John Dramesi, an anti-war leftist who hates our freedoms…I mean a former P.O.W. who did NOT provide propaganda material to the North Vietnamese and led a wing of S.A.C.

All braver than most.

I’m an Obama supporter who wishes other Obama supporters would lay the hell off McCain’s service. How did you like it when Kerry’s service was constantly dragged through the mud in 2004? Obama himself seems to get it. I haven’t heard him questioning McCain’s service. Show some respect.

Nope. Dramesi got it as bad, or worse, and didn’t allow himself to be used like McCain did. Stockdale mutilated himself so the North Vietnamese couldn’t show him off in a propaganda stunt.

The former. People might’ve taken Rolling Stone’s journalistic and editorial voice seriously at one time, but that was a long time ago. Shit, didn’t they give RFK Jr. a LOT of space to pimp his big pharma autism conspiracy theory? There aren’t that many people who take it seriously as a music magazine these days.

And there you have it. (I don’t feel any need to read beyond this point… oh wait, I saw the crack about Bush being a better pilot. Kinda funny, but I’ve seen better versions of that joke, and if you try to make a serious point of it it’s just stupid.)
I’ve seen a handful of Dopers make this claim about McCain before. I think it’s really ridiculous. In the hands of an author whose goal is belittling his subject, any man can be made to look like an Oedipal case.

Very interesting article. Speaks loads to his true lack of character. I suspect it is all true.

And it really is better left unsaid. McCain’s lack of suitability for the job is already self-evident based on his recent actions. Bringing up his past selfishness, his past looking out for number one and only number one, his past recreations of his positions as he bet the situation called for, only dilutes the importance of the current evidence in his current actions of his gross inadequacy for the position of president.

So yeah, seems like he was always a self-centered, spoiled, truth-bending asshole. Those of us who were taken in by his act should be ashamed of ourselves for having been so easily deluded. I don’t care about that, though. What I care about is that he is all of those things right now. And what he is and isn’t right now is where the focus must remain.

I don’t understand this - how does being a POW make you “braver than most”? There were plenty of POWs who did not volunteer to go to Vietnam, who were not doing anything courageous when they were captured, and did nothing but follow the whims of their captors while in captivity. I don’t think they should be scorned for being captured, or for not fighting their captors harder, or even for going along with their captors out of fear of death or torture. I’d probably do anything short of harming my family to avoid torture, and one of my darkest fears is that I might be tortured enough one day that I might even consider that.

That doesn’t make them brave, that makes them people to feel sorry for. The ones that resisted their captors were brave.

Since I see that dropzone is serious about what he said earlier- criticizing a guy for caving under torture is beyond the pale and also ideologically inconsistent. McCain might be somewhat less courageous than Stockdale and Dramesi et al, but they’re the only people with the standing to actually make that argument, and once you’re at that level of fortitude, who cares anyway?

I already told you, that article was good enough for me. Lets all piss all over the service of a man tortured as a POW in the service of his country. Really, keep pounding the drum.

I’ve wondered about this for some time, myself. A couple of points in the McCain mytos give me pause.

For instance, the fact that his father was an admiral was held by the NV as being important? Why? Surely they didn’t expect his father to switch sides, or to begin working covertly on their behalf? What would they have gained by releasing McCain that they wouldn’t gave gained otherwise?

And this about how McCain “refused” to be released? How was he so empowerd, he was a prisoner, if they decided to release him, what was he going to do? Tie himself to his bunk?

And, for that matter, did they ever actually release anybody before the war’s end? If so, under what circumstances?

Jesus. Can’t we just have 4 more years of GWB instead of *that *asshole?

This is explained in the article. They knew he was an admiral’s son because he told them he was to receive medical care. He knew that this would get him preferential treatment because capturing the son of someone so important would be very useful for propaganda. He gave them information beyond what the code of conduct allows. When he (and others) were offered the chance to go home if they made statements, he refused. As did they.

After he refused, they tortured him some more, and he ended up signing statements claiming that he was a criminal and “air pirate”.

Even before this, he was aiding the enemy:

I hope you don’t mind if I make this a little more blunt-

This is Swiftboating. This is literally almost identical to criticizing Kerry’s service, far more so than any number of attacks on Obama that were metaphorically dubbed Swiftboating (although those were also loathsome).

Excellent. Here’s praying it works.

There’s not a lot in common between this and what happened to Kerry.

Kerry had his service maligned by people who never served with him. It was in a book that was funded in part by the people who were funding his opponent’s campaign. It made assertions that contradicted Kerry’s claims about what happened in Vietnam.

This is an article by people investigating McCain who are not funded by his opponent. They asked people who were there with McCain, some of which McCain claims he respects. He has not contradicted any of these assertions, but he has put a spin on what happened that omits a lot of what was witnessed by people who were there.

Comparing this to Kerry’s swiftboating is ridiculous, and gives far more credit to Kerry’s detractors than they deserve.