Debate Prep

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October 7, 2008 by 8junebugs

Rolling Stone has a looong article up on McCain’s personal and professional history. If you’re considering casting your vote for McCain for reasons of character or where he stands on the issues, please take the time to read this article. I won’t pretend it’s objective — the reporter wrote it in a tone that mirrors my outrage — but it is informative. 

McCain recently said on The View that no one could name the issues on which he has changed sides…because, he claims, he hasn’t.

Rolling Stone names them. All of them — and there are many. In fact, you can thank him, among others (specifically, the other 4 in the Keating 5), personally for the financial crisis we face today. He’s as flip-floppy as any candidate in recent memory, and not because he’s reasonable and can be brought around to see someone else’s point, but because it has been politically expedient.

(You may have noticed that he voted for the recent pork-filled bailout and then, not 24 hours later, said the president should veto it because of all the pork. Um, wha…?)

(Oh, and torture? Seriously? Shouldn’t he be the last person to support torture? Well, he did it anyway. Perhaps because he knows exactly how effective it is.)

McCain has been running as a maverick, although he initially ran for his Senate seat on his Washington-insider connections. He knew how to get things done, he said. He was right then, and he’s even better at it now. He has used and abused friends, lobbyists, family connections, family money, and his explosive temper to affect legislation, most frequently in accordance with the needs of his contributors.

If you worry about your retirement, your children’s education, your place as a world citizen, please think long and hard before voting for someone who does not sincerely share your concerns — who, in fact, is so far removed from your day-to-day struggles that he simply cannot understand them.

John McCain has never had to worry about his education, his income, his retirement, his healthcare, or whether he’ll lose one of his houses. His only concern has been to surpass the level of power attained by the preceding John McCains by any means necessary. Whenever he was denied something based on his qualifications, he leaned on privilege to get what he wanted.

And he wants to be your president, you commander-in-chief, your representative around the globe.

Many people vote for the candidate most like them. Which candidate is more like you?

private high school tuition
vs.
public school education and food stamps?
***
legacied into naval academy
vs.
taking out educational loans for college?
***
pitching a fit to get into the Naval War College in spite of your grades and resume
vs.
putting grad school on hold to go to work

Maybe I was wrong about the Palin selection. Maybe they didn’t want to appeal to my uterus after all. Maybe the strategy was to counteract the fact that I know John McCain is not like me. He doesn’t know what it’s like to live from paycheck to paycheck. He doesn’t know what it’s like to have to decipher higher education on your own. He doesn’t know what it’s like to struggle with medical bills, with or without insurance.

What’s more, I am no longer convinced that he gives a damn. He can’t even fake it anymore. Watch his speeches, watch his eyes. As a friend put it recently, he looks like some guy wearing a McCain mask.

Obama has made no bones about being ambitious, and merely smiled when the media pegged him as the newcomer. But his ambition and his political savvy are necessary to get to the office where he can make the biggest difference.

I have more confidence in Obama’s desire to leave his daughters a better world than I have in McCain’s desire to finally outrank Dad and Grandpa. I have more confidence in the integrity of a devoted husband and father than in a notorious philanderer. And I would rather spend the next 4 to 8 years (fingers crossed) working toward equality, prosperity, and justice than worrying about who is pulling McCain’s strings.

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