McCain’s temper

The front page, top of the fold story in the Washington Post: McCain: A Question of Temperament . The story is about John McCain’s notorious temper, insinuating that he might not have the “temperament” to be president. We await a story on Hillary Clinton’s notorious temper.

Still, what do you think about this issue, which is bound to get hit hard in the general election? According to the story, the main target of McCain’s wrath has been fellow Republicans who renege on Senate deals or who indulge in pork barrel earmarks, which McCain consistently opposes. The story also cites other presidents who had incendiary tempers, including Harry Truman, Lyndon Baines Johnson, Richard Nixon, and (yes) Bill Clinton.

Is there a danger that McCain might get angry at some foreign leader and get us into war? If we go by the niceness, even-tempered standard, I guess Barack Obama is our man. Is there a danger there too?

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • JPW

    Ramesh Ponnuru has something to say about this. Apparently the WaPo story exaggerates and is flat out wrong in some places: http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=OWFmYTNmYTQ5OTcyY2QyN2ZmZDg1YzNlZWU3ODk3MjI=

  • JPW

    Ramesh Ponnuru has something to say about this. Apparently the WaPo story exaggerates and is flat out wrong in some places: http://corner.nationalreview.com/post/?q=OWFmYTNmYTQ5OTcyY2QyN2ZmZDg1YzNlZWU3ODk3MjI=

  • Susan aka organshoes

    I dare anyone to defend the journalistic malpractice described in that Corner post referred to above.
    There’s no need to defend McCain in the process.

  • Susan aka organshoes

    I dare anyone to defend the journalistic malpractice described in that Corner post referred to above.
    There’s no need to defend McCain in the process.

  • WebMonk

    On the whole “is it better to have a fiery president or a laid-back president” issue – it’s a very pointless debate. Both sides will come up with a variety of rationales, none of which will be based on any sort of reality.

    There’s a funny little trick that can be pulled on people that exemplifies this tendency. Tell one group of people “Snap judgment/action people make the best firefighters” and tell another group “Calm, methodical people make the best firefighters” and then put them into a room together. Both sides will come up with an incredible array of reasons why their position is the proper one.

    Ditto for a president – “calm people make the best Presidents” or “fiery people make the best Presidents” will do nothing to actually change people’s minds since they will just make reasons why their favorite person’s personality is best suited for the position of President.

  • WebMonk

    On the whole “is it better to have a fiery president or a laid-back president” issue – it’s a very pointless debate. Both sides will come up with a variety of rationales, none of which will be based on any sort of reality.

    There’s a funny little trick that can be pulled on people that exemplifies this tendency. Tell one group of people “Snap judgment/action people make the best firefighters” and tell another group “Calm, methodical people make the best firefighters” and then put them into a room together. Both sides will come up with an incredible array of reasons why their position is the proper one.

    Ditto for a president – “calm people make the best Presidents” or “fiery people make the best Presidents” will do nothing to actually change people’s minds since they will just make reasons why their favorite person’s personality is best suited for the position of President.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    First thing I noted in the article was unnamed sources. What we have here is not necessarily a crisis of temper, but a crisis of manhood in DC.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    First thing I noted in the article was unnamed sources. What we have here is not necessarily a crisis of temper, but a crisis of manhood in DC.

  • Don S

    Bill Clinton’s temper, from biographies published after he left office, and from anecdotal stories circulating during his presidency, is well known, and he is said to bear a grudge for a long time. I don’t believe it was ever the focus of a big MSM story during either of his campaigns however. Certainly not front page, top of the fold.

    I’m sure tODD will tell us that this has nothing to do with any media bias against Republicans.

    In McCain’s long history as a politician, there is no evidence that he has ever acted in a rash manner in public. I think there are enough checks and balances on presidential power to outlast an outbreak of bad temper. Probably good for foreign leaders to fear the temper of our President a little bit.

  • Don S

    Bill Clinton’s temper, from biographies published after he left office, and from anecdotal stories circulating during his presidency, is well known, and he is said to bear a grudge for a long time. I don’t believe it was ever the focus of a big MSM story during either of his campaigns however. Certainly not front page, top of the fold.

    I’m sure tODD will tell us that this has nothing to do with any media bias against Republicans.

    In McCain’s long history as a politician, there is no evidence that he has ever acted in a rash manner in public. I think there are enough checks and balances on presidential power to outlast an outbreak of bad temper. Probably good for foreign leaders to fear the temper of our President a little bit.

  • Arfies

    Is it too much to hope that we will have leaders (not just the President) who are capable of honest emotion–laid back, angry, and everything in between–and smart enough to know when it’s appropriate to let those emotions show?

  • Arfies

    Is it too much to hope that we will have leaders (not just the President) who are capable of honest emotion–laid back, angry, and everything in between–and smart enough to know when it’s appropriate to let those emotions show?

  • saddler

    Anyone can become angry-that is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way-that is not easy.

    Aristotle, The Nichomachean Ethics

    Anger would be a problem only if it permeated the entire administration.

  • saddler

    Anyone can become angry-that is easy. But to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose, and in the right way-that is not easy.

    Aristotle, The Nichomachean Ethics

    Anger would be a problem only if it permeated the entire administration.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    I, for one, have seen the light and now welcome this sort of policy-free candidate analysis. Who cares what sort of wonky things McCain actually thinks? To truly know if he deserves my vote, I need to know what he’s really like, for which articles like this are, of course, highly informational. This, truly, is the essence of a free press informing the voting populace. Or so I’ve been led to believe. Who am I to tell the press what to focus on? I shouldn’t tell them what to write anymore than they should tell me what to focus on, right?

    And Don S is right (@5). While the media frequently mentioned Clinton’s temper in ’92 and ’96, even making it the focus of articles (as a cursory search of Google News will show), I cannot find that the Washington Post ever wrote a front-page, above-the-fold story about Clinton’s temper, thus proving how very liberal they are. Moreover, I can’t even remember a single time they ever wrote any sort of article saying anything bad about Clinton or Gore. And if they did, those were exceptions to the law of media liberalness.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    I, for one, have seen the light and now welcome this sort of policy-free candidate analysis. Who cares what sort of wonky things McCain actually thinks? To truly know if he deserves my vote, I need to know what he’s really like, for which articles like this are, of course, highly informational. This, truly, is the essence of a free press informing the voting populace. Or so I’ve been led to believe. Who am I to tell the press what to focus on? I shouldn’t tell them what to write anymore than they should tell me what to focus on, right?

    And Don S is right (@5). While the media frequently mentioned Clinton’s temper in ’92 and ’96, even making it the focus of articles (as a cursory search of Google News will show), I cannot find that the Washington Post ever wrote a front-page, above-the-fold story about Clinton’s temper, thus proving how very liberal they are. Moreover, I can’t even remember a single time they ever wrote any sort of article saying anything bad about Clinton or Gore. And if they did, those were exceptions to the law of media liberalness.

  • Don S

    Sounds like we’re bringing tODD around. :)

    In any event, I don’t think McCain is really expecting tODD’s vote.

  • Don S

    Sounds like we’re bringing tODD around. :)

    In any event, I don’t think McCain is really expecting tODD’s vote.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don S (@9), clearly my subtle, subtle sarcasm was too subtle for you.

    As to my voting for McCain, frankly, you misread me (and this is not sarcastic!). I’m honestly not a Democrat, except that the current administration (and defenders thereof) have made me seem like one.

    Of this year’s contenders, I most wanted McCain to win, and I still haven’t ruled out voting for McCain, depending on how things go (why, several of my non-Christian “liberal” Portland friends feel the same way!). Of course, I liked him more before he began focusing on the 2008 presidency, which I think has had a bad effect on him.

    Sadly, though, my vote for or against McCain will be based on his ideas, and not the fact that he is short, ill-tempered, or even that he associated and was involved with corrupt Senators.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don S (@9), clearly my subtle, subtle sarcasm was too subtle for you.

    As to my voting for McCain, frankly, you misread me (and this is not sarcastic!). I’m honestly not a Democrat, except that the current administration (and defenders thereof) have made me seem like one.

    Of this year’s contenders, I most wanted McCain to win, and I still haven’t ruled out voting for McCain, depending on how things go (why, several of my non-Christian “liberal” Portland friends feel the same way!). Of course, I liked him more before he began focusing on the 2008 presidency, which I think has had a bad effect on him.

    Sadly, though, my vote for or against McCain will be based on his ideas, and not the fact that he is short, ill-tempered, or even that he associated and was involved with corrupt Senators.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Sorry, that should read “Of this year’s Republican contenders.”

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Sorry, that should read “Of this year’s Republican contenders.”

  • Don S

    tODD, I got the sarcasm. My comment was subtly sarcastic as well, as evidenced by the smiley face, intended to convey good humor.

    I still don’t think McCain is expecting your vote. The only way he could possibly get it, from my reading, is if he were to renounce the Iraq war, agree to immediately pull the troops home, and otherwise promote the liberal policies he often has in the past. Additionally, Obama would have to lose the primary. Am I wrong?

  • Don S

    tODD, I got the sarcasm. My comment was subtly sarcastic as well, as evidenced by the smiley face, intended to convey good humor.

    I still don’t think McCain is expecting your vote. The only way he could possibly get it, from my reading, is if he were to renounce the Iraq war, agree to immediately pull the troops home, and otherwise promote the liberal policies he often has in the past. Additionally, Obama would have to lose the primary. Am I wrong?

  • Joe

    tODD your continued equation of Obama’s associations with an unrepentant domestic terrorist, a racist preacher of hate and TOny Rezko with the height of a candidate is simply ridiculous. If you honestly don’t see the difference, then I would suggest that you are looking at this through a lens that is very similar to the one you accused me of looking through several months ago when we debated wether your comments about Dick Cheney’s desire for war were in line with the 8th commandment’s best construction requirement. (you will recall that I ultimately admitted that, while I do my very best to be lens free, I may have been viewing it through a lens). I guess the question for you is, how is your lens these days?

    Should we look at McCain’s connection to the Keating 5? – sure that is completely fair. The Senate did an investigation so the record is pretty well developed. We might want to talk about his temper if it is true that he called his wife the C-word in front of reporters a few years back (not that it would be okay in private, but it seems to suggest that maybe he can’t control his temper).

    Anyway, for myself, I am going to look at the issues, but quite frankly I have spent a lot of time doing that already. The campaign is pretty mature at this point. I am also going to try to assess the candidate’s character and I really do think you can learn something about a person by who the voluntarily associate with.

  • Joe

    tODD your continued equation of Obama’s associations with an unrepentant domestic terrorist, a racist preacher of hate and TOny Rezko with the height of a candidate is simply ridiculous. If you honestly don’t see the difference, then I would suggest that you are looking at this through a lens that is very similar to the one you accused me of looking through several months ago when we debated wether your comments about Dick Cheney’s desire for war were in line with the 8th commandment’s best construction requirement. (you will recall that I ultimately admitted that, while I do my very best to be lens free, I may have been viewing it through a lens). I guess the question for you is, how is your lens these days?

    Should we look at McCain’s connection to the Keating 5? – sure that is completely fair. The Senate did an investigation so the record is pretty well developed. We might want to talk about his temper if it is true that he called his wife the C-word in front of reporters a few years back (not that it would be okay in private, but it seems to suggest that maybe he can’t control his temper).

    Anyway, for myself, I am going to look at the issues, but quite frankly I have spent a lot of time doing that already. The campaign is pretty mature at this point. I am also going to try to assess the candidate’s character and I really do think you can learn something about a person by who the voluntarily associate with.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don S (@12), sigh … I, too, was joking @10 (“subtle, subtle”?). Should’ve used a smiley face. Sorry.

    And no, your reading isn’t correct — at least not completely. If you’ve read somewhere that I said the only option is to “immediately pull the troops home”, tell me where. And “renounce the Iraq war”? Heck, at this point, I’d start with asking him to stop giving me the impression he’s gearing up for yet a third war (the other two were just going so well?). Honestly, it sounds like you’re just imputing to me a generic liberal stereotype, without knowing much about what I think on the matter.

    Joe (@13), you’re picking and choosing my words so that they say something I didn’t say, but which is easily shot down. I haven’t actually said that all those things are just as important as a candidate’s height — please read what I’ve said. My point is that if, as some here have advocated, we ignore a candidate’s ideas altogether and focus merely on the personal minutia of a candidate that the media loves to discuss, then we might as well focus on a candidate’s height (trust me, the media will bring this up as well come the presidential debates).

    Yes, McCain’s being part of the Keating 5 is more important than the fact that he is short, but I still don’t care about it, mainly because McCain seems to have moved on past it. Most importantly, I have no reason to believe that it tells me that McCain would be a corrupt president in 2009, anymore than Obama’s association with Ayers tells me that he would be a terrorist-coddler (except, of course, that Obama is a Muslim who hates our flag and liberty and ohmygoodness hereallyisaterrorist).

    This game of denunciation whack-a-mole doesn’t help me know how a candidate will do his job, it just serves to make the candidate look bad — an act that many in our media (and here) seem to have confused with learning about a person. It sets up this false dichotomy of either guilt-by-association (if the candidate does not yield) or weakness (if he does and repudiates whatever it is he is being asked to repudiate).

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don S (@12), sigh … I, too, was joking @10 (“subtle, subtle”?). Should’ve used a smiley face. Sorry.

    And no, your reading isn’t correct — at least not completely. If you’ve read somewhere that I said the only option is to “immediately pull the troops home”, tell me where. And “renounce the Iraq war”? Heck, at this point, I’d start with asking him to stop giving me the impression he’s gearing up for yet a third war (the other two were just going so well?). Honestly, it sounds like you’re just imputing to me a generic liberal stereotype, without knowing much about what I think on the matter.

    Joe (@13), you’re picking and choosing my words so that they say something I didn’t say, but which is easily shot down. I haven’t actually said that all those things are just as important as a candidate’s height — please read what I’ve said. My point is that if, as some here have advocated, we ignore a candidate’s ideas altogether and focus merely on the personal minutia of a candidate that the media loves to discuss, then we might as well focus on a candidate’s height (trust me, the media will bring this up as well come the presidential debates).

    Yes, McCain’s being part of the Keating 5 is more important than the fact that he is short, but I still don’t care about it, mainly because McCain seems to have moved on past it. Most importantly, I have no reason to believe that it tells me that McCain would be a corrupt president in 2009, anymore than Obama’s association with Ayers tells me that he would be a terrorist-coddler (except, of course, that Obama is a Muslim who hates our flag and liberty and ohmygoodness hereallyisaterrorist).

    This game of denunciation whack-a-mole doesn’t help me know how a candidate will do his job, it just serves to make the candidate look bad — an act that many in our media (and here) seem to have confused with learning about a person. It sets up this false dichotomy of either guilt-by-association (if the candidate does not yield) or weakness (if he does and repudiates whatever it is he is being asked to repudiate).

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Note: I don’t seriously expect the media to attack McCain regarding the Keating 5, mainly because they honestly seem to like the guy (in spite of their being rabidly, rabidly liberal, I know, I know). But also because they consider it old news (in spite of it being several decades ago now; someone born after the scandal can vote, you know).

    Still, I’m sure many here would find it absolutely informative to see McCain forced to sever all ties, one-by-one, to each of the other Five: “Senator McCain, do you renounce John Glenn and all his works and all his ways? … Yes or no, do you hereby repudiate him? … But you’ve called him a colleague and a friend, will you denounce him?”

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Note: I don’t seriously expect the media to attack McCain regarding the Keating 5, mainly because they honestly seem to like the guy (in spite of their being rabidly, rabidly liberal, I know, I know). But also because they consider it old news (in spite of it being several decades ago now; someone born after the scandal can vote, you know).

    Still, I’m sure many here would find it absolutely informative to see McCain forced to sever all ties, one-by-one, to each of the other Five: “Senator McCain, do you renounce John Glenn and all his works and all his ways? … Yes or no, do you hereby repudiate him? … But you’ve called him a colleague and a friend, will you denounce him?”

  • Don S

    tODD, are you seriously comparing John Glenn or any of the other “Keating 5″ to William Ayers?

    I’m sorry I imputed a generic liberal stereotype to you. I can’t imagine where that came from, except ….. maybe……….your writings.

  • Don S

    tODD, are you seriously comparing John Glenn or any of the other “Keating 5″ to William Ayers?

    I’m sorry I imputed a generic liberal stereotype to you. I can’t imagine where that came from, except ….. maybe……….your writings.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don S (@16), I suppose I should have put Keating’s name up there, instead. He was the convicted one. The others just showed “poor judgment” in their appearance of corruption and with whom they associated. But this isn’t about those people, it’s about the candidates, and their associations, which you maintain are very informative — moreso than what the candidates think and say. Except, it would seem, in McCain’s case.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don S (@16), I suppose I should have put Keating’s name up there, instead. He was the convicted one. The others just showed “poor judgment” in their appearance of corruption and with whom they associated. But this isn’t about those people, it’s about the candidates, and their associations, which you maintain are very informative — moreso than what the candidates think and say. Except, it would seem, in McCain’s case.

  • Don S

    You can’t even begin to equate Charles Keating with William Ayers, a violent terrorist who still thinks he should have done more bombing. It’s apples and oranges. And in Obama’s case, it’s not just poor judgment, it’s horrible judgment. Or worse.

  • Don S

    You can’t even begin to equate Charles Keating with William Ayers, a violent terrorist who still thinks he should have done more bombing. It’s apples and oranges. And in Obama’s case, it’s not just poor judgment, it’s horrible judgment. Or worse.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    What Ayers did was unconscionable. And yes, he is unrepentant. As far as I can tell, so is Keating — he blamed regulators for what happened.

    What I object to is the minimization of what Keating did — he is essentially guilt-free, compared to that guy. This sort of mortal/venal ranking really bothers me as a Christian. Especially since numerous elderly people were left without their life savings — it’s not like Keating’s actions affected nobody.

    Also missing here is some perspective on how associated each candidate was with their respective criminals. Are you really telling me that you think Obama was as tightly associated with Ayers as McCain was with Keating? Did Obama do him any favors while in office? How much money did Keating give, as compared with Ayers?

    Anyhow, I’m just discussing this within your notion that any associate is more important than a candidate’s ideas. I don’t agree with it, and I’m not sure you do, either — at least you don’t seem to think McCain’s associations have any bearing on his awesomeness.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    What Ayers did was unconscionable. And yes, he is unrepentant. As far as I can tell, so is Keating — he blamed regulators for what happened.

    What I object to is the minimization of what Keating did — he is essentially guilt-free, compared to that guy. This sort of mortal/venal ranking really bothers me as a Christian. Especially since numerous elderly people were left without their life savings — it’s not like Keating’s actions affected nobody.

    Also missing here is some perspective on how associated each candidate was with their respective criminals. Are you really telling me that you think Obama was as tightly associated with Ayers as McCain was with Keating? Did Obama do him any favors while in office? How much money did Keating give, as compared with Ayers?

    Anyhow, I’m just discussing this within your notion that any associate is more important than a candidate’s ideas. I don’t agree with it, and I’m not sure you do, either — at least you don’t seem to think McCain’s associations have any bearing on his awesomeness.

  • Don S

    Believe me, I don’t think McCain is awesome. I did not vote for him in the primaries and there are many, many issues where I disagree with McCain.

    So did McCain maintain his relationship with Keating after Keating’s crimes were brought to light? I’m not aware that he did. On the other hand, Obama cultivated his friendship with Ayers after he was a known terrorist, with full knowledge that he was unrepentant. You don’t see any difference in that, or find that important in evaluating Obama’s judgment? We have found in raising our children that the type of friends they pick tells us an awful lot about their hearts.

  • Don S

    Believe me, I don’t think McCain is awesome. I did not vote for him in the primaries and there are many, many issues where I disagree with McCain.

    So did McCain maintain his relationship with Keating after Keating’s crimes were brought to light? I’m not aware that he did. On the other hand, Obama cultivated his friendship with Ayers after he was a known terrorist, with full knowledge that he was unrepentant. You don’t see any difference in that, or find that important in evaluating Obama’s judgment? We have found in raising our children that the type of friends they pick tells us an awful lot about their hearts.

  • Greg

    todd writes:”This sort of mortal/venal ranking really bothers me as a Christian.” I hope that your only writing against this application of the mortal/venial distinction and not attacking the distinction itself. Walther, Pieper, J.T. Mueller all maintained the distinction. Also the Smacald articles rely on this distinction.

  • Greg

    todd writes:”This sort of mortal/venal ranking really bothers me as a Christian.” I hope that your only writing against this application of the mortal/venial distinction and not attacking the distinction itself. Walther, Pieper, J.T. Mueller all maintained the distinction. Also the Smacald articles rely on this distinction.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Greg (@21), of course my point was to decry the minimization of sin in light of someone else’s sin.

    But I’m not familiar with what you say. References? All I could find in the Smalcald Articles was two references to “mortal sin”: “according to the old canons seven years’
    repentance is required for a single mortal sin”, and “Again, when they declare that it is a mortal sin if one breaks these ordinances, this, too, is not right.”

    No mention of venial sins, and neither of those references to mortal sin actually espouses the idea. I’m not saying there isn’t room for understanding how sins can affect one’s salvation (e.g. a sin done out of weakness vs. one done intentionally in spite of knowing it’s wrong), but I do not think it rises to the Catholic understanding of these terms.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Greg (@21), of course my point was to decry the minimization of sin in light of someone else’s sin.

    But I’m not familiar with what you say. References? All I could find in the Smalcald Articles was two references to “mortal sin”: “according to the old canons seven years’
    repentance is required for a single mortal sin”, and “Again, when they declare that it is a mortal sin if one breaks these ordinances, this, too, is not right.”

    No mention of venial sins, and neither of those references to mortal sin actually espouses the idea. I’m not saying there isn’t room for understanding how sins can affect one’s salvation (e.g. a sin done out of weakness vs. one done intentionally in spite of knowing it’s wrong), but I do not think it rises to the Catholic understanding of these terms.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don (@20), you don’t like McCain, fine. My question, though, is if his association with Keating affects your judgment of him. The impression I get is that it does not, in spite of your insistence that such associations are more important than the “issues where [you] disagree with McCain.” Who cares about “issues”, right? I thought you didn’t.

    Does McCain maintain his relationship with Keating today? I doubt it, though I can’t find anything say either way. Did he maintain it after Keating’s crimes came to light? Hard to say. He certainly backed off when Keating’s crimes were made public, but from what I’ve read, he seemed to have been involved while Keating was in trouble at the head of Lincoln S&L — that is the point of the whole “scandal.”

    Moreover, you seem to be equating these two types of associations. In Obama’s case, as you say, he has a “friendship” with Ayers. In McCain’s case, he received over $100,000 in contributions, his wife invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in Keating properties, and the McCains took many trips at Keating’s expense, with McCain not paying Keating back until years after the trips were taken, when the scandal came to light.

    Again, I’m not arguing that I consider these points important in whether I would vote for McCain, but I’m wondering if you believe your own argument in this regard.

    As to judging people on their friends, I’m just glad I’m not running for office. Who knows what sort of ridiculous claims people would make about what I really believe based on my friends? One of my dearest friends used to work for Planned Parenthood. I suppose that makes me pro-abortion (this is sarcasm: I’m not). She knows I don’t agree with her on this matter, but we’re still very close friends. I suppose I should sever all ties with her to please you, though.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Don (@20), you don’t like McCain, fine. My question, though, is if his association with Keating affects your judgment of him. The impression I get is that it does not, in spite of your insistence that such associations are more important than the “issues where [you] disagree with McCain.” Who cares about “issues”, right? I thought you didn’t.

    Does McCain maintain his relationship with Keating today? I doubt it, though I can’t find anything say either way. Did he maintain it after Keating’s crimes came to light? Hard to say. He certainly backed off when Keating’s crimes were made public, but from what I’ve read, he seemed to have been involved while Keating was in trouble at the head of Lincoln S&L — that is the point of the whole “scandal.”

    Moreover, you seem to be equating these two types of associations. In Obama’s case, as you say, he has a “friendship” with Ayers. In McCain’s case, he received over $100,000 in contributions, his wife invested hundreds of thousands of dollars in Keating properties, and the McCains took many trips at Keating’s expense, with McCain not paying Keating back until years after the trips were taken, when the scandal came to light.

    Again, I’m not arguing that I consider these points important in whether I would vote for McCain, but I’m wondering if you believe your own argument in this regard.

    As to judging people on their friends, I’m just glad I’m not running for office. Who knows what sort of ridiculous claims people would make about what I really believe based on my friends? One of my dearest friends used to work for Planned Parenthood. I suppose that makes me pro-abortion (this is sarcasm: I’m not). She knows I don’t agree with her on this matter, but we’re still very close friends. I suppose I should sever all ties with her to please you, though.

  • Susan aka organshoes

    It’s the influence or the like-mindedness of these friends, tODD, and not their mere existence as friends.
    If you say prove that they influnce Obama, or prove that he thinks like them, I say prove he doesn’t.
    What, besides his rhetoric, do we know about what he believes?
    Well…except for the war and taxing capital gains for the sake of fairness (since when was that the purpose of taxation?) and providing universal health care. And that he thinks arugula is sooooooo expensive these days…

  • Susan aka organshoes

    It’s the influence or the like-mindedness of these friends, tODD, and not their mere existence as friends.
    If you say prove that they influnce Obama, or prove that he thinks like them, I say prove he doesn’t.
    What, besides his rhetoric, do we know about what he believes?
    Well…except for the war and taxing capital gains for the sake of fairness (since when was that the purpose of taxation?) and providing universal health care. And that he thinks arugula is sooooooo expensive these days…

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Susan (@24), your statement that “If you say prove that they influnce Obama, or prove that he thinks like them, I say prove he doesn’t” is lamentable from a logical and a Christian stance.

    Yes, let’s just assert whatever horrible idea we can think of — George Bush is corrupt due to Ken Lay’s influence, John McCain steals from the elderly due to Charles Keating’s influence — and if you ask me for proof, I’ll say “No, my friend, the burden of proof is on you to prove it isn’t so!”

    Also, Dick Cheney kicks dogs when no one is looking. Prove he doesn’t.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Susan (@24), your statement that “If you say prove that they influnce Obama, or prove that he thinks like them, I say prove he doesn’t” is lamentable from a logical and a Christian stance.

    Yes, let’s just assert whatever horrible idea we can think of — George Bush is corrupt due to Ken Lay’s influence, John McCain steals from the elderly due to Charles Keating’s influence — and if you ask me for proof, I’ll say “No, my friend, the burden of proof is on you to prove it isn’t so!”

    Also, Dick Cheney kicks dogs when no one is looking. Prove he doesn’t.


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