Saturday, August 25, 2018

Lest We Forget



Call me anything, but not late for a party.



















We note today the news from multiple sources that, after a long and brave struggle, the brain cancer in his head will finally succeed in removing from office the man the torpid and disgraceful voters of Arizona would not for over three decades in office, Sen. John Sidney McCain III. We salute the brain cancer in this long, valiant, and hard-won effort, and thank it for belatedly doing what mere voting should have done for AZ and the nation at least two decades prior.

We would be remiss in failing to note that at a time when most of his generation shirked, shrunk, and sabotaged their nation, McCain stood up. Whether from lack of imagination, the press of family duty to two prior generations of family service as four-star admirals, or, one can but hope, from some later-suppressed spring of actual patriotism and unmitigated love of country that has long-since run dry, John McCain did the Lord's own work in serving in the military at a time when such service was literally spat upon, and delivered to America's enemies, actual red-flag waving godless murdering communist bastards, exactly what they deserve: 500 pound bundles of flaming jagged steel shrapnel and TNT, exploding right on top of their asses. Anyone doing that deserves recognition and full military honors for the facts, without exception.

Unhappily for him, on exactly one such mission, his jet was blown out of the sky, he was injured and wounded, and he became a guest at one of the most notorious prison torture camps known to living men, the infamous "Hanoi Hilton", where he suffered unspeakable and endless cruelties at the hands of his captors for six years until being repatriated at war's end.

While there may be some varying accounts, and his own admission of finally breaking under the ceaseless torture, there is no doubt that he suffered and bore upon himself such pain and agony of body and soul as killed lesser men at the same place and time. From that day to the present, he's been unable to lift his arms above his shoulders due to the abuse he suffered at the hands of such reprehensible captors. And for this exemplary service and more, the nation owes him and countless others, living, dead, or missing in perpetual limbo, an unspeakably large debt of gratitude. That much is beyond discussion.

Were we there when his casket passed us by, we'd render the hand salute, crisply and with military precision, to honor the flag on his coffin, that sacrifice he gave, and the sort of man who could and did undertake such service to his then-ungrateful and indifferent country.

But we did not undertake this to praise him, but to bury him. (We beseech the fates, please, soon.) So one fine day, his well-filled caisson shall pass, and he'd be laid to rest, and should we have the opportunity, we doubt we'd forego the chance to leave something on his grave site afterwards. A deposit that would not pass for flowers, nor from our heart, but rather from somewhere a foot or two lower down, to betoken what he spent the last 32 years on this earth doing: undercutting and backstabbing his constituents, and crapping on the state of Arizona, his party, his military record, the fallen shipmates who never made it home, his multiple oaths of office, and his country itself, in becoming one of the most petty, vindictive, backstabbing and cruel little pricks ever to befoul the halls of the United States Senate. Which, given the competition, is really saying something.

Everyone will remember with clarity the spiteful remarks, the gratuitously antagonistic and pugnacious demeanor, the outright duplicity, the barely concealed rage, the disloyalty to people who served him and were discard like used Charmin - the former governor of Alaska comes to mind - once he could get nothing more from them. The dictionary entry for "misanthrope" should bear his photographic likeness, and were he to pick up a cat in the dark, we have no doubt he'd pet it the wrong way out of sheer force of habit. We doubt even dogs liked him. Humans, however, will remember too the half-hearted, half-assed, and half-witted bumble for the presidency, inflicting by force of his own lacking humanity and manifest unfitness for the office, the last disastrous regime upon America, such that it could not be dislodged until the 22nd Amendment came to the rescue, just in the nick of time.

And most of all, they will remember the snarl of undisguised contempt he wore perpetually, and the demeanor and personality that gave it to him, and preventing even the most kind-hearted person from ever regarding him with well-deserved pity, rather than the justly earned disgust he's finally enjoyed. That he is the sort of man who would drag himself to cast the deciding vote to thwart the will of the vast majority of Americans in ending the disastrous experiment in full socialism that was ObamaCare, contrary to his party, president, and simple mathematics, amidst the ravages of brain cancer, really tells you more about the man than anything that two thousand days of beating and torture at the hands of inhuman communist bastards ever could. He'll probably enter eternity still more proud of that petty, vindictive, and traitorous act than he will of any day he ever spent in uniform.

And any obituary, come the happy day, cannot but note that the latter more than dwarfs the former.

We will not speak ill of the dead right after the funeral, if only to let the unfortunate family (unfortunate because they are family, and not due to the actual temporal circumstance) grieve in peace for a respectful interval. That's but humanity, and simple common courtesy.

We are not of the tradition that believes in penance and purgatory, yet we cannot but hope that when his earthly days finish, he is accorded an interval in the afterlife replicating to the last maggot-infested ricebowl and last tendon-snapping morning re-education session the days and years he spent in Hòa Lò to repay him for his conduct after his release. How long that would be is not for earthly minds to say, were it to happen, but we are within the realm of reasonableness to say that happen it should.

If some backstory inevitably surfaces days or years hence, trying to pin most of his later years on PTSD, we understand, and even sympathize, but that argues for getting the hell out of the Senate, and seeking treatment, rather than punishing the entire nation for one's own inner demons. Otherwise one is no better than children who murder their parents, and then beg for mercy because they are orphans.

Most people die never knowing how folks really feel about them, because they're not at their memorial service, just the husk. As Hognose's father (Hogfather?) observed at his memorial service last summer, being dead is like being stupid: your friends and family all know about it, but you don't. I would not wish such agnosticism on the subject of today's epistle. So in anticipation of the hastening happy date when the world is finally freed from the actions of Senator McCain (aka Sen. McCrazy) we note for the record that while we cannot hope to attend his impending funeral, rest assured we shall, with the utmost gratitude, heartily approve of it.


Whatever you think of the soon-to-be-departed senator, please learn a lesson from him, and try to live your life so that your passing makes your contemporaries weep and angels sing, and not the other way around.

33 comments:

MMinLamesa said...

Man I hate liars and John was a champ. I will never forget his campaign when he ran against JD, who BTW would have made a great senator.

Him and that fookin' ball cap walking along a fence supposedly at the border telling us to "build the dang wall"

I have absolutely no sympathy for him.

And I'll leave it at that.

Did you know that Palin's telepromter failed a couple minutes into her VP acceptance speech and she winged it? Watch it again sometime.

DAN III said...

Aesop,

Whew ! That was one of the best written essays I have ever read. You certainly are master of the written word.

As far as McCain goes, there is little I could state that would be any different than your remarks. However....McCain is a scoundrel. His military service was no less than self-service.

Never forget that on 29 JUL 67, while in his aircraft aboard USS Forrestal, McCain decided to do a "wet start" of his plane. In turn, McCain's "wet start" turned into a disaster where 134 United States sailors were killed by this bastard's indifference and unprofessionalism (which he displayed in the Senate for the next three decades). McCain's daddy and his connections whitewashed the subsequent investigation, saving John Sidney McCain III from a lifetime in Leavenworth.

Ultimately, I blame the people of Arizona in keeping this bastard around as the proverbial albatross dangling from the necks of the American citizens.

May McCain rot in hell !

Aesop said...

McCain wasn't the cause of the Forrestal disaster, he was the victim. Slipshod practices and poor engineering was to blame, and Lt. Jim Bangert was the one who flipped the fatal switch, sitting in an F-4 astern of McCain's spot on the flight deck, which caused the unintentional launch of a Zuni 2.75" rocket into an A-4's underbelly fuel tank adjacent to McCain's aircraft, causing the bombs on it and several other A-4s (seven in total) to explode in the ensuing fire.

If it were otherwise, I would say so, but it's patently false and absurd. Trying is like trying to blame the Chicago Fire on Mrs. O'Leary's cow, instead of crappy building, fire prevention, and firefighting practices, and Chicago city corruption.

Besides a number of great documentaries on the incident, there's this excerpt of forensic detail, which succinctly shows what actually happened.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=enHEr7SsPes

The wet-start nonsense was spread by people who don't know, trying to be the smartest guys in the room. It's one thing to try and pin something on a guy you don't like (which illustrates the level of contempt in which McCain was later held) that he did do, it's another thing entirely to try and falsely pin something on the guy that he clearly couldn't have had any fault for, out of sheer spite. The allegation falls into the second category.

All McCain did was jump out of his doomed plane, from its position among the group of burning and fully-armed A-4 Skyhawks waiting to launch an Alpha strike, onto a burning sea of flames on a flight deck covered in lit jet fuel and fallen ordnance.

Less than a minute later, the first of seven aging WWII 1000# bombs in the fire exploded, wiping out most of the firefighting DC party, killing about 30 guys nearby instantly, peppering McCain with bomb fragments in his chest and legs, scattering wounded and dead crewmembers all over the aft quarter of the flight deck, and embarking Forrestal's surviving crew into an epic battle to save their crippled ship.
What happened after that is the stuff of heroic legends.

McCain was simply an unfortunate victim of that incident, due to sloppy deck practices, and not the proximate cause in any way, shape, nor form. He was just the guy whose plane got caught in the resulting conflagration.

Forrestal and later Enterprise taught the Navy, in blood and treasure, how to and how not to run a carrier afloat, and how to and how not to do damage control, which is the only redeeming feature of the loss of lives in each instance.

The things I can and do fault McCain for are legion, but none of them happened during his time in uniform.

tweell said...

I would note McCain's nickname among his fellow Hanoi Hilton POW's was Songbird, and that they would not willingly be around him afterwards. At the same time, you can be sure that the VietComs knew what they had in him and put more effort into breaking him than others.
He dumped his wife (burned in an automobile accident) after he got back and found a rich heiress to marry. He has called in many favors and shady deals to ensure the Hensley alcohol distributor business has all but a monopoly in Arizona.

McCain will be meeting the final judge soon, and I would not want to be in his shoes.

RandyGC said...

Another point about McCain's captivity: He could have been released years earlier. The NVA offered him early release in 68 IIRC. He refused because there were POWs that had been there longer than he had that should be released first.

The release offer was an attempt at propaganda due to his dad being named CINCPAC; See! The Elitist Aristocrat Military Industrial Complex takes care of it's own and leaves the rest of the miserable Yankee Air Pirate Mercenaries to rot in our Benevolent Care!

I don't know if it has ever been confirmed that he knew that at the time.

Either way, that was not an act of a man totally without honor.

RandyGC said...

Tweell. Having been through AF SERE training (Rubber Hose I and II), and hearing stories of many (not only in VN but in NK and in the USSR during the Cold War) I learned there are many paths through surviving, and context is everything.

In one case, a POW "broke" and told their interrogators everything they wanted to know, including the locations of the chicken coops and pig pens on the USS Enterprise.

In other cases, the POW finally gave them a little bit of information. And when they came back for more, made their captors start all over again and work through the whole process to get the next piece of info.

I wasn't there, and I bet you weren't either. I haven't spoke directly to anyone incarcerated with McCain (the ones I've met were in other parts of the Hilton, in other camps or in solitary), so until I do, I put the "Songbird" stories in the realm of RUMORINT and press on.

As Aesop stated, there is plenty to criticized or even hate about his post military life. We don't need to try to tear down his time in the Navy or the Hanoi Hilton.

idahobob said...

I will happily piss on the old traitors grave.

Anonymous said...

Benedict Arnold rendered exceptional service to the cause in the War of Independence - right before he sold out. For which is he remembered? _revjen45

tweell said...

Navy SERE has Doug Heydahl, talked to him. He would not say much, but did confirm the Songbird nickname.

Aesop said...

That's people who didn't know then, and don't know now, talking out of their ass.

Anybody trying to denigrate his service during the most brutal captivity American POWs have ever endured, never read When Hell Was In Session, Surviving Hell, Defiant, Five Years To Freedom, Honor Bound or ten other works about what POWs endured, including McCain, never watched The Hanoi Hilton, and frankly don't know WTF they're talking about.

Period. Full fucking stop.

By all accounts, his military service is all he did right.

If he'd simply retired to a quiet life after the military long about 1980, he'd be an American military legend right now.

More's the pity that he did not do exactly that.

T-Rav said...

Like everyone here, I have lost most of my onetime respect for McCain (I actually worked as a volunteer on his '08 campaign, though more to stop Obama than anything else). However, I am pretty sure that if I were subjected to the tortures he faced in Hanoi, I would crack like an egg. I still have a great deal of respect for that part of his career, at least. As Aesop says, would that he had faded away after his return.

Anderson said...

A perfectly worded essay that balances the deserved admiration with the much deserved scorn. If his widow is appointed to fill his seat, she will surely get the rock star treatment all around. So we aren't done with his sad legacy yet.

June J said...

McCain has died.

Pat H. said...

John Sidney McCain, III, aka "Ace McCain" for downing five aircraft which were, unfortunately US Navy aircraft. US Navy royalty, grandaddy was an admiral, daddy was an admiral, while Ace could only manage captain. His position of sixth from the bottom of his class was a gift to his father. He may, also, have been responsible for the Forrestal disaster.

Overall, he remains one of the most disgusting, criminals in the US senate.

Last: http://www.unz.com/runz/american-pravda-when-tokyo-rose-ran-for-president/

Anonymous said...

He's now with all the Agent Orange casualties he worked to deny treatment, or acknowledgement...

And the Gulf War Syndrome guys as well.

Aesop said...

Forrestal mythos has already been dealt with, Pat.
Unless you've figured out how a man inside an A-4 cockpit could launch a rocket from an F-4, parked 50 yards away. That would be quite the neat trick.
The reality of his life is bad enough in the later years without inventing imaginary insults and crimes.

Pat H. said...

First, I've been around quite a bit, Aesop. My military service began in 1967 and continued a long time.

McCain was one of the A4 pilots that like to do a "torch off" engine start. By delaying the igniters firing, fuel would build up in the engine combustion chambers, resulting in a huge flame that sometimes was over 100 feet long. I don't know where you learned the "50 yards" distance, what I've seen is was much less and McCain's aircraft was aimed incorrectly for his to get away with the spectacular engine start. Do I really need to go into his previous four losses of Navy aircraft?

You do the math.

McCain was an asshole throughout his military service. The primary reason he didn't make admiral was his behavior while station commander at Navy Jacksonville. He tried to fuck every woman on the base, and lots more of them elsewhere. His philandering was a road block he couldn't remove. He was fucking his current drug addicted wife long before he divorced his first wife.

In short, I can't think of anything positive about the sniveling, shitasses life.

Aesop said...

Scroll up, Pat. Forrestal had jack and shit to do with anything McCain did or didn't do. And unless your service included being flight deck personnel in a colored jersey and a cranial with eyewitness testimony on CV-59 in the summer of '67, you're just perpetuating flawed RUMINT sown by some of later well-deserved enemies. Be better than that.
McCain was in the impact area of an accidental rocket launch due to slipshod deck practices, no more, and no less. Trying to pin this on rogue engine flames is pure codswallop. And if he'd dawdled in the cockpit of his flame-engulfed A-4 for another 60 second or so, which was due to nothing he had done, that would have ended any further discussion, and the rest of his life.

His behavior after Vietnam is his to own, and he does now, for all time.
It's damning enough without trying to add imaginary offenses after the fact.
I had thought the benediction I offered made that crystal clear.

streamfortyseven said...

I knew one of his fellow Navy fighter pilots in his squadron on Forrestal. While he said nothing about the fire, he did say that McCain was an incompetent, reckless, and dangerous pilot who was despised by quite a few if not most of the other pilots in the squadron. He said that the only way that McCain got on as a Navy fighter pilot was by his father's influence - and he continued to abuse that influence for as long as he was on board ship. He had nothing good to say about McCain. My friend served from 1949 to 1975, from the Korean War to the Vietnam War.

Aesop said...

Waitwaitwait...a Navy pilot who's an arrogant jackass??
That's never happened before since 1911, when Eugene Ely did the first shipboard takeoff and landing.
Who'd'a thunk??
/sarc

Third-hand RUMINT is worth what anyone pays for it.
And, given current events, superfluous.

I would counsel that anyone toting the deceased around in their own head rent-free, rather than hoisting a glass of cheer tonight, ought to just let it go.

Cheers!

streamfortyseven said...

The youtube video you cite as evidence is a historical re-enactment. In fact, you are correct on *this* matter - actual video from above the flight deck shows the rocket launch on deck at 3m32s of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVgocdvcG0A so it was not a "wet start". Otherwise I stand by my comments, sarcasm or not.

Aesop said...

I didn't cite the clip as "evidence", I cited it as explanation/information; the entire uncut US Navy docu-film from 45 years ago is available on YouTube, the same one you found in 0.2 seconds, and clearly identifies the culprit as the launch of a Zuni (2.75") rocket from an F-4 clear across the flight deck and hitting one of the A-4s adjacent to McCain's, and as a standard training film, it was common knowledge from the CNO to the lowest seaman as the cause even before McCain was released from POW status, long before he ever sought office.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AVgocdvcG0A
Any bystanders, check the 3:30ff mark...

The clip I pointed people too tells you how they figured out why the rocket in question accidentally launched. The entire documentary used to be online, and I've seen it start to finish, but the clip is the key section, without all the extraneous set-up to the incident.

I didn't throw a dart at the internet and accidentally get lucky on this point, I know my shit, and the sooner we agree on that as a general rule, the less misunderstandings there will be. I'm open to counter-evidence, but I don't pull things out of my back end for giggles. I welcome evidence from all quarters, but anyone assuming I'm ignorant on something I write about is generally a sucker bet.

Enterprise in '69 had a similar incident as Forrestal's in '67, (that doc film is also on YouTube in its entirety if anyone cares) but what triggered theirs was the turbine exhaust from a "huffer" starter tug pointing right at the F-4's rocket pod from 18 inches away, overheating the rockets' warheads, causing an explosion, and starting the exact same kind of incident on the flight deck, but in the intervening 18 months between the two occurences, the Navy had greatly improved Damage Control training for all hands, esp. flight deck hands, and while there was more damage and more bombs went off, there were fewer casualties, and the ship was saved faster.

The "wet start" hoakum is pure undiluted BS, cobbled up as a smear by butthurt political opponents decades later.

And BTW, McCain was never a fighter pilot (the "A" in A-4 should be a major clue there), so anyone claiming to be such a thing "from his squadron" is already a dubious source, and being some 6-10 years older than McCain (b. 1936), and in the Navy a full decade earlier, would have been at minimum a LtCmdr when McCain (USNA '59) was commissioned an ensign, and a Cmdr or higher by the time McCain made it from a RAG into a squadron. That would make your source either the XO or CO of McCain's squadron. Sh'yeah. As if.
If he was actually enlisted, even in the same squadron, he'd know even less.
Calling BS on the whole thing, top to bottom.

I had some douchecanoe in the ER try to blame his heroin problem on PTSD from Vietnam and seeing all his buddies die, trouble being I had his d.o.b., and he would have been 12 when that war ended. I pointed that out to him in about 30 seconds, and suggested he try another line of BS, and he tried to get butthurt, but then folded up and admitted it was just his con to get sympathy points.

Also had a GF whose mom was dating a guy who claimed to be a former sub skipper.
With a prominent and raggedy-ass tattoo on his forearm that looked like a souveneir from an Olongapao whorehouse.
I told my GF he was a BS artist telling sea stories, but her mom was happy, so why get into it, right?
Turned out he was a former simple swabbie, never an officer, and certainly never a sub skipper, and current scam artist trying to get into her mom's bank account.

So my BS radar for "vets" and implausible sea stories is pretty well-tuned.
Stolen valor is a thing.

I think you've been had, bud.
Dude might've been in the Navy, maybe even when and as long as he says, but that's probably as far as his story tracks with actual reality.

Aesop said...

Don't feel too bad though; The Burning Platform posted Lew Rockwell's bullshit unvetted too, and jumped on their dick with both feet, wearing golf cleats.

https://www.theburningplatform.com/2018/08/26/mccain-the-hero-nearly-sunk-an-aircraft-carrier-killed-134-sailors/

RM said...

Any obituary for Senator John McCain should include mention of his efforts to bury the P.O.Ws and M.I.As that were left behind following the Vietnam War. Here is a link to Sydney Schanberg's investigative report John McCain and the POW Cover-Up
republished at the Unz Review:
http://www.unz.com/article/mccain-and-the-pow-cover-up/
Here's Ron Unz's comment regarding how this report was buried by the mainstream press:
"Yet what I found most remarkable about Schanberg’s essay were not its explosive historical claims but the absolute silence with which they were received in the mainstream media. In 2008, John McCain’s heroic war record and personal patriotism were central to his quest for supreme power—a goal he came very close to achieving. But when one of America’s most eminent journalists published an exhaustive report that the candidate had instead served as one of the leading figures in a monumental act of national treachery, our media took no notice. McCain’s public critics and the operatives of his Democratic opponent might eagerly seize upon every rumor that the senator had had a private lunch with a disreputable corporate lobbyist, but they ignored documented claims that he had covered up the killing of hundreds of American POWs. These allegations were serious enough and sufficiently documented to warrant national attention—yet they received none."
http://www.unz.com/article/was-rambo-right/

Good riddance John McCain, your passing came too late for many.

Mark Matis said...

Good ol' Songbird has finally gone to join his best buddy Teddy "Swim, bithc!" Kennedy in a warmer climate. My sincere prayer is that everyone who attends his funeral joins both of them there soon.

As I have frequently asked, I wonder who has the toilet paper concession for his grave site? That dude is going to get rich beyond his wildest dreams. At least, as long as he doesn't run out of product...

Tamaqua said...

At least he died knowing that all his duplicity and whoring himself out to the highest bidder for years was all for naught, since he died knowing Donald J. Trump succeeded where he so miserably failed. Now the important thing is, who will the governor appoint to his place, since the vindictive old prick just had to die in office instead of resigning?

Mark Matis said...

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey will appoint Songbird's wife:
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/arizona-gov-doug-ducey-will-choose-john-mccains-replacement/
so the McCain stench will continue to hang over the Senate through at least 2020. After all, that is how the Koch-sucking Rove Republican swill run. Of course, it could be worse. Instead of appointing his wife, Ducy could appoint his daughter. That way we'd end up with TWO huge boobs in the Senate, instead of just one.

Mr.MantraMan said...

I get no enjoyment about agreeing with Aesop but I do, so there it is. I just glimpsed at McCain's Wiki page and I'll accept it at face value that on his last mission he pushed the stick forward and dove towards his target, that says a lot.

These gents were basically playing Stutka in the era of radar and missiles and they had done so in the face of immense losses, planes and more importantly men, and they still persevered.

What he did to derail his career before he got his club ticket punched well that is on him.

For reference about "dipping the nose" see the great book "Bury me upside down" the men of that unit were airborne spotters for attack aircraft and they noticed how few real aggressive pilots there were in Vietnam.

Anonymous said...

Concur with your essay concerning one John S. McCain III. You are entirely correct concerning the Forrestal incident, not McCain’s fault. That being said, enlisted personnel are typically more observant and honest in evaluating officers than fellow officers are, mostly because the latter often view the former as not much more than furniture and so traits are more relaxed than if they think someone who “matters” is watching.
My service was towards the end of ‘Nam and through the period when the POW’s came home. I never met anyone who knew Lt. or LCdr. McCain who thought much of him as an officer; vain, entitled, privileged, vindictive, petty, without the competence to back up the attitude. However, blame for the Forrestal is unfair. As to his turning down the release offer by the DNC, I mean NVA, (damn spellcheck) I remember, after reading his account of the incident, it struck me that he turned it down more because of his father’s perception than anything else. He came across as being utterly terrorized by the thought of daddy’s approbation. I think that moving from the military to civilian politics was his way of escaping his father and grandfather’s shadow and it gave him carte-blanche to indulge in his worst traits; but who knows the heart of another man.
At the end of the day, “By their fruits you will know them,” and the fruit of John S. McCain III’s life was bitter, shriveled and, hopefully, sterile. Enough said.

Anonymous said...

There is a saying in Hollywood: YOU ARE AS GOOD AS YOUR LAST PICTURE. No one can take away the good of the Senator's efforts as a Naval Aviator and POW. If he was truly a "songbird", then let the facts come out and be proven or disproven. Sadly, a free press is equally free to print the truth or ignore it.
The Senator's "LAST PICTURE" has shown to me a complete lack of integrity and a life filled with self-serving avarice and sinful pride. Paraphrasing the line from BREAKER MORANT: "he'll have all the answers now." Vae, Caesar. Anathema sit.

Baldrick said...

I volunteered (and then worked) for McCain's first run for President when I was a relatively young ingenue of 30 and believed him about wanting to get rid of PAC money. Yeah, I could be naive, but McCain-Feingold had me suckered. Anyhow, my father, if the Forrestal incident were true, would have absolutely disinherited me if he thought for an instant that it was McCain's fault. Dad would have had the same information from that film, from his own experience working on ordnance for F-4 Phantoms in DaNang when he first got to Vietnam (yes I realize they're different aircraft but Sidewinders are Sidewinders, as Aesop knows), and a later incident when he was on the Valley Forge that "shit happens".

He also would have known MANY people who would know the correct scuttlebutt from the Forrestal, because he was a defense contractor for most of his remaining life after Stanford, hobnobbing with Generals and Colonels and the like. He didn't LIKE McCain particularly as a person, but he didn't tell me to knock it off and go work for Bush or something. Dad could be VERY strident in his opinions (like Aesop here) and wouldn't have countenanced his own daughter working or volunteering for anyone who fucked around on a flight deck. Dad also rejected the "Songbird" thing because people break under torture, it's what they generally do, and he had nothing but respect for McCain for just surviving that. Dad admired Admiral Stockdale more (possibly just through conversations with him), but essentially a lot of people break under torture and McCain didn't break as much as he could have under all of that excruciating pain.

McCain's later political stances earned Dad's scorn and I didn't volunteer for McCain in '08, as I'd grown up also, but no, McCain didn't cause the Forrestal incident.

This is my father's recounting of the Valley Forge incident, so yes, sometimes horrible shit happens on flight decks, and if McCain had caused an incident like this, my father would absolutely have been livid that I was volunteering. He wasn't.

http://www.187thahc.net/stories/valley.htm

Mark Matis said...

I would only note that Senator McCain's father was a respected Admiral. Not that the Navy might have done anything with the investigation to keep from tarnishing his father's reputation, but...

Anonymous said...

well, the dirty dog tried with his dying breath to slam our nation.
no wall! what a jerk!