Sunday, August 17, 2008
John McCain's mental lapses have long been apparent and sometimes reported, like when he confuses Shia and Sunni Muslims or rearranges the borders and even the geographic location of various Middle Eastern countries or shows that ethics are for the masses, not for the privileged like John McCain, who did almost as well at the Naval Academy as George W. Bush did at Yale. Both were legacies--Bush to the manor born, McCain to the admiral's suite--but whereas the Bushy cruised through on the 'gentleman's C,' McCain worked disdainfully--he has said he had a "chip" on his shoulder--to graduate 894th out of a class of 899. His current forgetfulness, referenced by Frank Rich in today's New York Times column, could reflect McCain's mental lassitude, but it could also be due to dementia that is being deliberately concealed. Similarly, McCain's entanglements with lobbyists should receive more scrutiny than the New York Times and Washington Post have provided, good tough that has been. We've had quite enough of Bush's intellectual slothfulness and hardly need another one like him, no matter the cause. Beyond that, it's long past time for political correspondents to stop making candidates sound like people they are not. In some cases, the reporting may be worse than that--mistatements corrected in service to a bigger falsehood that the candidate or office holder puts out as truth and is presented as such by media outlets.