In the over half a century that I have been politically engaged I have never seen such an unqualified presidential candidate as John McCain. There are tens of millions of Americans in their seventies and beyond that have been smart enough to become technology literate, but not McCain, who is unable to even use the Internet. The man has a medical history that makes Dick Cheney look like the picture of great health.
How anyone can still see McCain as a legitimate maverick is insane. The man has switched positions on so many key issues as to make him unbelievable on anything. He routinely says things in public that are totally false. McCain has sold his soul to get the Republican nomination and while Republicans deserve no better, Americans would be beyond stupid to vote for McCain. Yet if polls are to be believed history could repeat itself and nearly half of voters could vote for him. For me this is entirely understandable, because I find Barack Obama a clever charlatan and nothing more than another conventional, dishonest politician with exceptional eloquence and a winning smile. Is he the lesser evil compared to McCain? Sure. But that just depresses me, not motivate me to vote for him.
The contrast between the youthful Obama and the elderly McCain simply on the basis of visible physical and mental sharpness and vigor is remarkable.
Every time I see McCain he looks and sounds pathetic. Anyone who keeps repeating an insipid phrase demonstrates a complete lack of mental competence. With McCain it is constant reference to “my friends” along with his cartoon grin.
It is time to stop thanking McCain for his military service and honoring his stint as a war prisoner by giving him credit for being qualified physically and mentally to be president. We have all seen how being president ages all the men in that office. The before and after photographs of presidents convince you that the office inflicts incredible stress, even on someone as brain-dead as George W. Bush. But Bush was a relatively young man in good health. He may have escaped the price of impeachment that he richly deserves, but he has not escaped the physical deterioration produced by the presidency.
Now imagine McCain aging as all other presidents have in office. It is a frightening prospect. Something akin to some horror movie that shows a transformation from a normal human being to some frightening alien life form.
There must be some way out of this.
It is time for more Americans to face the truth about the two-party plutocracy that has robbed our political system and weakened our democracy. The one important thing that McCain and Obama have in common is that they are both products of and servants to the corrupt, dysfunctional two-party system.
Clearly, the corrupt political system has accommodated itself to only about half of eligible voters actually voting, a disgrace that hardly anyone even bothers to talk about anymore, as if a first class democracy has such a disgusted population. But this is consistent with the fact that some 84 percent of Americans see the country on the wrong track.
Obama is no political messiah. And to simplistically see him mainly as so much more preferable than the decrepit McCain misses the core problem. Obama will do nothing to change the corrupt, unworthy political system. He is a talker, not an agent of change, certainly not systemic political change that requires bucking the elite status quo political powers that pull the strings of the two-party plutocracy.
Make your vote count. Make it a vote against all Democratic and Republican candidates and against the two-party plutocracy that makes a mockery of our democracy, which is as fake and delusional as any in the world. The time is right for Americans to vote for third party or independent presidential and congressional candidates, not because any of them can be elected, but as an action to demonstrate through voting that they reject the two-party duopoly. Nonvoters are ignored, but we need to get on the electoral scoreboard with votes against the two-party status quo.
[Joel S. Hirschhorn can be contacted through www.delusionaldemocracy.com.]