If we had to choose one good thing (and there are many) from Tim Dickinson's profile of John McCain in the new issue of Rolling Stone, it would be the plethora of insults that Dickinson finds to amuse the reader. I mean, if you're at all like us, the same-old McCain insults — old, out of touch, unfunny, wrong on the issues, quick-to-anger, Cap'n Crappypants — are getting boring. That's why we decided to round up the new ones... after the jump!
From former POW John Dramesi: "he's still the undisciplined, spoiled brat that he was when he went in [to the Navy]"
"a man who has consistently put his own advancement above all else"
"a man willing to say and do anything to achieve his ultimate ambition"
"George W. Bush was a much better pilot."
"Larry Wilkerson, a retired Army colonel who served as chief of staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell [said] 'John McCain made his reputation on the fact that he doesn't bend his principles for politics. That's just not true.'"
"McCain has become the kind of politician he ran against in 2000."
"he has engaged in a 'practice of politics' so deceptive that even Rove himself has denounced it."
"'John McCain's ambition overrode his basic character,' says Rita Hauser, who served on the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board from 2001 to 2004."
"John McCain is his own special interest."
Former Republican Senator Lincoln Chafee says, "McCain is putting himself first. He's putting himself first in blinking neon lights."
"John Sidney McCain III has spent most of his life trying to escape the shadow of greater men."
"he concedes his runty physique inspired a Napoleon complex"
High school nicknames included "Punk" and "McNasty."
One former classmate called him, "a mean little fucker."
The Commandant of the Naval Academy "[called] McCain 'spoiled' to his face."
Phil Butler, an Annapolis classmate, said: "He was a huge screw-off."
"McCain chased a lot of tail... He picked up models when he could, screwed a stripper when he couldn't."
"In the air, the hard-partying McCain had a knack for stalling out his planes in midflight. "
"Enemy planes destroyed by McCain: two. American planes destroyed by McCain: two."
Dramesi says about McCain's time in Hanoi: "This business of my country before my life?" Well, he had that opportunity and failed miserably. If it really were country first, John McCain would probably be walking around without one or two arms or legs — or he'd be dead."
Also, it didn't take long for the North Vietnamese to "break" McCain: he squealed like a pig pretty early, and apparently in exchange for medical treatment.
Only two weeks after his capture, the North Vietnamese press issued a report — picked up by The New York Times — in which McCain was quoted as saying that the war was "moving to the advantage of North Vietnam and the United States appears to be isolated." He also provided the name of his ship, the number of raids he had flown, his squadron number and the target of his final raid.
"Parts of his memoir recounting his days in Hanoi read like a bad Ian Fleming novel, with his Vietnamese captors cast as nefarious Bond villains."
Says his Annapolis classmate Butler (also a POW): ""John allows the media to make him out to be the hero POW, which he knows is absolutely not true, to further his political goals."
"The reckless, womanizing hotshot who leaned on family connections for advancement before his capture in Vietnam emerged a reckless, womanizing celebrity who continued to pull strings."
"he was unembarrassed by his own nepotism"
"For good measure, he crashed his third and final plane, this one a single-engine ultralight." That means he crashed 3 planes, not including when he was shot down after failing to take evasive maneuvers.
"[Bob] Smith, the former senator from New Hampshire, has said that McCain's 'temper would place this country at risk in international affairs, and the world perhaps in danger. In my mind, it should disqualify him.'"
"Sen. [Pete] Domenici of New Mexico has said he doesn't 'want this guy anywhere near a trigger.'"
"And Sen. Thad Cochran of Mississippi weighed in that 'the thought of his being president sends a cold chill down my spine. He is erratic. He is hotheaded.'"
"'He's going to be Bush on steroids,' says Johns, the retired brigadier general who has known McCain since their days at the National War College."
"Indeed, McCain's neocon makeover is so extreme that Republican generals like Colin Powell and Brent Scowcroft have refused to endorse their party's nominee."
""The fact of the matter is his judgment about what to do in Iraq was wrong,' says Richard Clarke, who served as Bush's counterterrorism czar until 2003."
Also from Clarke: "we're at risk because of the mistaken judgment of people like John McCain."
"McCain has demonstrated an unwavering commitment to taking whatever position will advance his own career."
"He 'is the classic opportunist,' according to Ross Perot, who worked closely with McCain on POW issues. 'He's always reaching for attention and glory.'"
And, finally, one more from Clarke: "I'm sure John McCain loves his country. But loving your country and lying to the American people are apparently not inconsistent in his view." So which one do you plan to start using? I bolded my favorite above. Mave-Believe Maverick [Rolling Stone]