The Hollow Man

New York Magazine has a must read profile of John McCain by Joe Hagan:

John McCain sits stock-still, eyes
shadowed by his wiry eyebrows, hair combed down slick and straight,
mouth turned down in grim resolve. On a stage in a high-school
auditorium in Mesa, Arizona, against the backdrop of a 30-foot American
flag, this is what a statue of Senator John Sidney McCain III might
look like: Veteran. Hero. Maverick.

The
problem is that he’s sitting next to Mitt Romney, who, at six foot two,
towers over him like a tanned and gleaming giant. McCain looks like Ed
McMahon to Romney’s Johnny Carson, quietly affirming whatever Romney
says, nodding and mouthing the word “Beautiful” after Romney gives a
soliloquy about the American spirit. McCain detested Romney in the 2008
primary, but now he needs his star power to draw the biggest crowd he’s
had since Palin was in town. This is politics—this is how you win. But
some have questions.

“There
are two John McCains,” muses an old friend of the senator’s. “The one I
love is a very big man, and he’s willing to take on big issues in a big
way. Then there’s another side of John, he’ll admit, that is petty and
angry and petulant and small, and that side has overtaken the other
one.”

Hagan makes a strong case that McCain’s mavericky image was created by former aide and ghost writer Mark Salter. Salter is now out of the picture and Senator Walnuts is lost at sea. It *almost* made me feel sorry for McCain or I would if he’d ever been the man we all thought he was in 2000 and 2001.

6 thoughts on “The Hollow Man

  1. Jude says:

    Man. The press fell out of love with McCain just as hard as they fell in.
    If the press hade nude pictures of McCain, they’d be all over the Internet by now.
    Messy breakups are so ugly.

  2. MichaelF says:

    I think a good bit of the media still can’t quit Johnnie Boy…but right now what he’s really got going for him is that Heyworth or whatever-his-name-is is plum crazy AND as dumb as a box of rocks.
    Any idea of who, if anyone, is running on the Democratic side?
    Personally, I never much liked McCain, whether or not he was being called maverick — something about him reminded me of the spoiled brats in my high school class.

  3. Adrastos says:

    He always reminded me of a Tulane frat boy who was also in ROTC.

  4. pansypoo says:

    i always got the screaming ritard from him. in 1999 democrats who thought he was desirable confounded me.
    i hope obama is festering in his little mind.

  5. MapleStreet says:

    I would agree that McCain has had a dramatic, almost epic, fall from grace in the last few years.
    But I also have to note that the McCain image has always been a contortion of the truth. See Michael F and Adrastos above.
    Son of a General he gets appointment to the Academy, graduates near the bottom of his class, cracks up several planes (in one case taking a stack of US equipment with him.) He crashed in Nam, was POW and made a statement that should have gotten him in trouble, but I suspect good ‘ole Dad protected him.
    In short, almost a characature of what he pretends to be.

  6. montag says:

    I don’t understand why people are surprised in the least. The people around him wasted their careers remaking his image from that of an opportunistic asshole into that of a statesman, and now, surprise, surprise, it turns out he’s just an opportunistic asshole?
    Sorry, I’ve never had much respect for Republican myth-making, and it deserves even less when it fails…

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