The sadness of St. John McCain

Remember how John McCain was so brave because he stood up to Bush on the issue of torture? Well, all of that is no more, as McCain has now voted against a bill that would ban waterboarding.

It’s easy to point out, as many have, that this demonstrates that McCain isn’t really the straight talker that the media portrays him as. Of course, this isn’t really news as he’s already caved on things like lobbyist influence and religious fundamentalism in order to try to impress the conservative base before the election. But rather than gleefully pointing out McCain’s inconsistencies, I think this particular action is best described as a profoundly sad event. McCain is someone who has been tortured, who knows what if feels like, and who has stated publicly that it doesn’t work and that other methods are more effective at getting information. Yet, in order to get to the White House, he has now sold his last shred of human dignity to pander to the bloodlust of the far right. I often believe, despite the mountains of evidence to the contrary, that politicians retain at least some core principles even while they play the dirty game. Events like this do not help this belief.

Also, considering the bazillions of hours of press McCain got for criticizing torture in the past, it would be nice if the mainstream media would actually cover his shift in position.