Codpiece Delusion

by digby

Like so many of you, I have long thought that electing McCain is a third Bush term. His differences in policy really are minimal and his temperament is equally arrogant and angry. What I didn't realize until recently is that he's equally delusional. That's the Bush trifecta.

Remember this mantra?


"I know how to lead. I have been telling my fellow-Texans that I have a vision for a better tomorrow for our state. You can't lead unless you know where you want to lead. I'm a uniter, not a divider,


"I've shown the American people I know how to lead," said Bush.

Here's McCain in 2008:

“What makes you more qualified than Mitt Romney, a successful CEO and businessman, to manage our economy?” Senator McCain offered a simple answer: “Because I know how to lead.”

Then: remember this from Bush?

"I've been to war. I've raised twins. If I had a choice, I'd rather go to war.'"

Check this out, from McCain, 2008:

I know how to win wars. I know how to win them.

Todd Gitlin asks:

How does he know? Which war did he win? Vietnam? Personal courage didn't win it. Nothing did.

So McCain has gone from a heroic prisoner of war who survived to tell the tale to someone who "knows how to win wars." But then, why not? Bush was hailed as the second coming of Winston Churchill because he made a speech that included the word "axis" in it, so why not?

McCain is getting crispy. He attacked Obama in a really ugly way by saying that he's willing to "lose a war to win an election" and now he's telling everyone he knows how to win them. This is delusional. Codpiece delusional. McCain has never "won" a war.

This is what Wes Clark was talking about and why they staged a full-on fainting party. McCain is running as a military leader --- but he isn't one. He's a politician who was in a war as a young man and was captured by the enemy. It was heroic service, but it wasn't leadership. And yet the myth of military leadership is the foundation of his claim to the presidency.

Bush sold himself as a sort of McCain type --- a cocky, individualistic, maverick flyboy ( just like in Top Gun only without all the oiled abs ---or maybe there were....) Bush, of course, was a total phony, down to his Chuck Yeager accent, while McCain was closer to the real thing 40 years ago. But it doesn't matter whether it's real or fake. This type of personality can be brave but they aren't leaders. In fact, they are temperamentally completely unsuited to be leaders. The fact that both of these men feel the need to baldly that they "know how to lead" should be a tip-off. That's something people can sense and see and it doesn't need to be articulated.

McCain is just like George W. Bush, only old.