John McCain is trying to decide whether to run for another term in the United States Senate. Here’s my two cents: enough already!
Like so many other political fossils that can’t quite let go of the immense power conferred by a seat in the world’s most exclusive club, McCain is trying to justify yet another six years representing Arizona. When he completes his current term, he will have been in the Senate for thirty years. When he first entered that august body, Ronald Reagan was President and the Mets had just won the World Series. In fact, almost half the nation wasn’t born yet.
The man who vanquished John McCain in the 2008 presidential campaign, Barack Obama, has come under fire recently for hosting a bevy of African dictators, most of whom, like McCain, have clung to power since the 1980’s. In general, Americans look askance on the political class, especially when it becomes permanent. I am not accusing McCain of the abuses of the African dictators, of course. I am only pointing out that, he has been in power too long. He is not alone.
When I was a lobbyist, I used to love it when a doddering octogenarian like McCain ran for reelection. Most lobbyists don’t want a change in personnel on Capitol Hill. The reason is obvious: once you buy a politician, you want them to hang around. If they leave, and a new politicians arrives, you’re back to square one in the influence game.
Actually, by lobbyist standards, McCain is a kid. By far, from an age standpoint, the favorite senator for lobbyists had to be Strom Thurmond. He was over 100 years old when he finally had to be wheeled out on a gurney. That’s what lobbyists want: a permanently elected class of people who “understand” how the system works, serving until they collapse of extreme old age.
After all, when your car runs out of petrol, it’s far cheaper just refilling it at the service station, rather than buying a new car. Similarly, filling the coffers of already-purchased politicians and having them serve your interests is far easier than breaking in a new one to do the same.
But for a nation hoping to remain competitive and vibrant, how can we abide by politicasters running our government who are, for the most part, out of touch with the current realities of our world? The arrogance of our political class is best seen in their insistence that the same group of Washington hands gets to decide what our lives will be like, year in and year out.
Is it possible that there are only 100 sapient citizens in this nation? Of course not. There are millions of qualified Americans who could bring a new perspective to our politics and help transform our government into a 21st Century problem-solver.
Instead, we are saddled with a gang of octogenarians who have been in power so long that they have lost touch with their voters. That they are reelected is more a factor of Americans’ exhaustion with the political process – and the shocking advantages of incumbency – than a tribute to their leadership and effectiveness.
If you’re John McCain, why would you ever leave the Senate? Senators rule the land like medieval potentates. They summon cowering citizens to their throne room for a kangaroo court hearing, upon pain of embarrassment or imprisonment. They issue threatening and defamatory missives all protected by totalitarian rules they pass to immunize their abuses from prosecution under the Speech and Debate Clause of the Constitution. They live like oligarchs, traveling with more opulence than the average billionaire. Why leave this, other than for the grave?
Plus, they can feed their self-importance through the rapacious and craven media, constantly begging these quasi-celebrities for interviews and leaks. Based on appearances on Sunday news programs, no one is more popular with the media than McCain. His ubiquitous presence on television to pontificate on the crisis du jour rankles his fellow Senators, but this is of little concern for McCain.
When one of his colleagues questions his behavior or policy positions, he is disdainful and belligerent. Indeed, McCain is best known among his colleagues for his profanity and obscenities. When the klieg lights dim, the real McCain emerges, usually with blush-inducing vulgarity.
McCain’s legislative accomplishments are mostly a collection of bills co-authored with the most liberal members of the Senate. In the past, his bro-sponsors included Teddy Kennedy, Russ Feingold and a confused Joe Lieberman. One might have hoped that legislation sponsored by Senators Lieberman and McCain would have covered rebuilding our imperiled defenses, or positioning our nation to effectively support Western Civilization’s war on Islamist extremism, but alas their combined effort was a Cap and Trade peon to the warmist cult pushing civilization into the economic ice age.
When he’s not busy cursing and blaspheming in the Senate cloakroom, or bleating and bloviating on television, or pushing liberal legislation, McCain is giving thought to reelection. Let’s hope that he makes the correct decision and retires. Perhaps he could be a lobbyist? Certainly scores of firms owe him for his favors over the years.
If not, and he decides to make another run, let’s just hope that, this time, the people of Arizona wake up and hand him the defeat he deserves.
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