The McCain-boinks-telco-lobbyist kerfuffle

Codesmithy over at Esoteric Dissertations from a One-Track Mind says everything I wanted to say about the burgeoning John “Walnuts” McCain/Vicki Iseman story, and says it much better than I ever could. The fact that McCain enjoys extramarital trysts isn’t exactly new, and as a general rule I couldn’t care less what McCain or any other politician does with his Johnson.

“Values voters” — whatever the hell that means — may well be put off if subsequent investigation reveals that McCain did in fact lay the sausage to Ms. Iselman. I’m more interested in what the relationship, sexual or otherwise, reveals about John McCain the alleged maverick.

McCain is to maverick status what Ralphie May is to classical ballet, i.e., not a goddamn thing.  Codesmithy reminded me that McCain is the last man standing amongst the Keating Five. You remember Charles Keating, Jr., don’t you? He was the Ohio-born anti-porn crusader who moved west to seek his fortune via robbing thousands upon thousands of investors of billions and billions of dollars through the vehicle of Lincoln Savings & Loan. McCain was one of the five U.S. Senators who pressured federal regulators to stay off Keating’s back in exchange for Keating’s gifts of ill-gotten mammon.

Regardless of whether McCain and Iselman have been engaging in a bit of the old in-out, in-out, the fact remains that the lobbyist regularly appears with McCain at fundraisers, shows up at his offices on a regular basis, and takes McCain flying on her clients’ company planes. Is that the behavior of a “maverick”?

Of even greater concern is McCain’s apparent cluelessness regarding how all this looks. McCain himself had no problem with being publicly joined at the hip with a representative of an industry that’s a darling of the Bush administration. His aides had to point it out.  It brings to mind Henry Ford, the “brilliant entrepreneur” who had to be told that paying his workers a decent wage would create a whole new class of consumers for his product.

“Maverick” my lily-white ass. McCain is the consummate beltway boy.

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