Tuesday, May 29, 2018

'John McCain: For Whom the Bell Tolls'

I watched TV all day yesterday, which is unusual for me, since I don't watch that much TV, except for baseball. I recalled that HBO plays the entire 10-part "Band of Brothers" series on Memorial Day, and I tuned in around 9:00am. And once I got going, I couldn't stop watching. I love that show. I love it more than just about anything else ever made.

After it was over on the West Coast, I clicked over to the main HBO channel and caught the new documentary of John McCain. It was surprisingly good. McCain generates intense passion, if not hatred, so folks can just take my word for it, or just watch it and judge for themselves. McCain's a patriot, no doubt. But that doesn't absolve him from the disgusting wishy-washy flip-flopping he's engaged in his entire life, and of which he's now currently engaging with relative gusto. All the bad calls he's made, the one's that don't accord with the radical left's cultural PC dominance, are now jettisoned for the convenience of preserving a legacy. The biggest repudiation he's made is of selecting Sarah Palin as his running mate in 2008. Actually, I think that's one of the best things he's ever done. If he hadn't chosen Palin it's likely that Obama would have matched the Electoral College victories of Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan in 1972 and 1984, respectively. That is, McCain would have probably one just his home state of Arizona if it wasn't for Palin on the ticket. She energized conservatives around the country and give the GOP a real forward/progressive orientation. Say what you will about Sarah Palin --- not the least of which she was often a policy lightweight --- the woman is genuine and genuinely conservative, and perhaps paved the way for the Trump administration today, and the resurgence of the regular, red-blooded Americanism that has driven the left-wing establishment literally insane since November 8, 2016.

Now John McCain's even saying that his support for the Iraq war was a mistake. Really, really, that's a bridge too far for me. It wasn't a mistake. McCain was right all along, and he would have been right for our country. Islamic State would have never emerged under a McCain presidency. The nucleus of the organization was crushed in the Bush administration's surge. But Barack Obama's precipitous withdrawal, which led to the rise of ISIS and the Syrian civil war and humanitarian crisis, squandered all of the heroic sacrifices made to secure the Iraqi people. McCain's attempt to whitewash his legacy is pathetic.

Sure, he's a genuine war hero. He shouldn't ever be attacked for his service. But his service shouldn't exempt him from criticism of his mistakes, and absolving his mistakes is the central goal of "For Whom the Bell Tolls."

Here's his latest book, if you're a fan, The Restless Wave: Good Times, Just Causes, Great Fights, and Other Appreciations.

And the preview: