Liberalscum Buster

November 12, 2008

ARE WE DOING THIS BAILOUT ALL WRONG ?

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 7:37 pm

Finance, along with production and sales is a necessary function of business but it has taken on a life of its own. Too many of our best and brightest are engaged in pushing money around and producing nothing directly and little indirectly. The present state of our economy is the result. If the capital and money markets need support, then it should be they and not Lehman Brothers, AIG et al. We need to scale back on financial institutions to the point where they serve to provide capital for business and not be an end in themselves and a means of making money without producing anything.

The government should invest in building windmill blades and solar panels and electrical grids for ourselves and for export.

November 2, 2008

DO WE WANT BARACK BUNNY OR YOSEMITE SAM AS PRESIDENT ?

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 11:03 pm

DO WE WANT A FIERY BLUSTERY PRESIDENT WHO BLOWS ON THE DICE AND ROLLS THEM HOPING FOR THE BEST? AND OFTEN CRAPS OUT?

OR A COOL CEREBRAL POKER PLAYER WHO KNOWS WHEN TO HOLD, KNOWS WHEN TO FOLD, KNOWS WHEN TO WALK AWAY, KNOWS WHEN TO RUN.

October 30, 2008

WHAT IF OBAMA TURNED OUT TO BE A MOLE UNDER DEEP COVER ACTING ON BEHALF OF AL QAEDA ???

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 8:56 pm

OR IF HE WERE A FOLLOWER OF LOUIS FARRAKHAN’ BLACK LIBERATION THEOLOGY ?

Do you have any doubt that Colin Powell, Bill and Hillary Clinton, Warren Buffett, Al Gore, Caroline and Teddy Kennedy, Harrison Ford and Matt Damon
WOULD ALL TURN ON HIM SO FAST THAT YOUR HEAD WOULD SPIN?

OR ARE ALL THEM IN ON THE “PLOT” TOO ?

(MAYBE THIS “REDUCTIO AD ABSURDUM” APPROACH IS A BETTER WAY OF EXPOSING THE ILLOGIC OF THE FEAR TACTICS USED AS ARGUMENTS AGAINST OBAMA.)

October 28, 2008

WEALTH REDISTRIBUTION McCAIN STYLE

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 11:53 am

1. McCAIN HELPED MAKE 20,000 DEPOSITORS OF LINCOLN SAVINGS BANK LOSE LIFE SAVINGS BY INTERVENING WITH BANKING REGULATORS ON KEATING’S BEHALF. CHARLES KEATING GOT VERY WEALTHY IN THE PROCESS AND McCAIN BENEFITTED.

2. McCain defended his attendance at the meetings with banking regulators by saying Keating was a constituent and that Keating’s development company, American Continental Corporation, was a major Arizona employer.

3. Keating was more than a constituent to McCain–he was a longtime friend and associate. McCain met Keating in 1981 at a Navy League dinner in Arizona where McCain was the speaker. Keating was a former naval aviator himself, and the two men became friends. Keating raised money for McCain’s two congressional campaigns in 1982 and 1984, and for McCain’s 1986 Senate bid. By 1987, McCain campaigns had received $112,000 from Keating, his relatives, and his employees–the most received by any of the Keating Five. (Keating raised a total of $300,000 for the five senators.)

After McCain’s election to the House in 1982, he and his family made at least nine trips at Keating’s expense, three of which were to Keating’s Bahamas retreat. McCain did not disclose the trips (as he was required to under House rules) until the scandal broke in 1989. At that point, he paid Keating $13,433 for the flights.
And in April 1986, one year before the meeting with the regulators, McCain’s wife, Cindy, and her father invested $359,100 in a Keating strip mall.

“Is John McCain a Crook?” Chris SuellentropPosted Friday, Feb. 18, 2000

October 26, 2008

JOHN McCAIN’S CURICULUM VITAE AS PER WIKIPEDIA

A SMART CREDIBLE WARRIOR WHO SHOOTS FROM THE HIP. HE HAD ONE SOLID YEAR OF EXPERIENCE OF MAKING SOMETHING GO AS COMMANDING OFFICER OF RESERVE AIR GROUP A TRAINING UNIT

BORN AUGUST 29,1936
Father- John McCain Jr. Naval Officer son of a 4 star admiral and a future 4 star admiral himself
Mother-Roberta Wright Oil heiress called the “Auntie Mame of Navy wives”.

1954-1958 US Naval Academy

McCain’s classmates were impressed by his cramming abilities on mathematics, science, and engineering courses and thought his low grades were by inclination and not ability. His class rank was further lowered by poor grades for conduct and leadership, which reflected his sloppy appearance, rebellious attitude, and poor relations with his company officer.

McCain chose not to conform to the Academy’s rules and some of its traditions. Each year he was given over a hundred demerits – earning him membership in the “Century Club” – for offenses such as shoes not being shined, formation faults, room in disorder, and talking out of place. He hated “plebe year”, the trial by ordeal and hhazing of entering midshipmen that would eventually weed out one quarter of the class. He did not take well to those of higher rank arbitrarily wielding power over him .

1958 GRADUATED FROM U. S. NAVAL ACADEMY 895 IN A CLASS OF 899.

1958-1960 Naval aviator in training, first at Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida through September 1959, and then at Naval Air Station Corpus Christi in Texas.

He began as a sub-par flier: he had limited patience for studying aviation manuals, and spent study time reading history books instead.

1960 LOST FIRST PLANE
During a practice run in Texas, his engine quit while landing, and his aircraft crashed into Corpus Christi Bay and sank to the bottom. Although momentarily knocked unconscious by the impact, he squeezed out of the cockpit and swam to the surface, escaping without major injuries.

NAVAL AVIATOR 1960-
1962 LOST SECOND PLANE His aviation skills improved, but he had another close call when he and his plane emerged intact from a collision with power lines after flying too low over Spain.

1965 LOST THIRD PLANE
A flameout in his trainer jet over Norfolk led to his ejecting safely before his plane crashed.

VIETNAM RECORD

USS Forrestal
McCain’s first five attack missions over North Vietnam went without incident, and while still unconcerned with minor Navy regulations, McCain had garnered the reputation of a serious aviator

July 29, 1967 LOST FOURTH PLANE Explosion and fire 167 sailors killed, 20 planes lost, Forrestal almost sunk.
Possible that McCain acted heroically but some question of McCain doing a “wet start” causing the iincident. McCain quickly was transfered to USS Oriskany.

USS Oriskany September 30, 1967
He volunteered to fly the squadron’s most dangerous missions right away, rather than work his way up to them.

After a grand total of 20 hours in combat and 23 combat missions he was shot down.

On October 26, 1967, McCain was flying his twenty-third mission, part of a twenty-plane attack against the Yen Phu thermal power plant in central Hanoithat previously had almost always been off-limits to U.S. raids due to the possibility of collateral damage. As he neared the target, warning systems in McCain’s A-4E Skyhawk alerted him that he was being tracked by enemy fire-control radar. He held his dive until he released his bombs at about 3,500 feet (1,000 meters) (he was later awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for this day). As he started to pull up, the Skyhawk’s wing was blown off by a Soviet-made SA-2 anti-aircraft missile fired by the North Vietnamese Air Defense Command’s 61st Battalion.

McCain reached Hoa Lo (aka Hanoi Hilton) in as bad a physical condition as any prisoner during the war. His captors refused to give him medical care unless he gave them military information; they beat and interrogated him, but McCain only offered his name, rank, serial number, and date of birth (the only information he was required to provide under the Geneva Conventions). Soon thinking he was near death, McCain said he would give them more information if taken to the hospital, hoping he could then put his interrogators off once he was treated. A prison doctor came and said it was too late, as McCain was about to die anyway. Only when the North Vietnamese discovered that his father was a top admiral did they give him medical care, calling him “the crown prince”. Two days after McCain’s plane went down, that event and his status as a POW made the front pages of The New York Times and The Washington Post. Interrogation and beatings resumed in the hospital; McCain gave the North Vietnamese his ship’s name, squadron’s name, and the attack’s intended target.

(APPARENTLY McCAIN HAS BLOCKED ACCESS TO NORTH VIETNAMESE RECORDS SO MUCH OF WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT HIS INTERNMENT IS HIS UNCONFIRMED TESTIMONY. THERE IS EQUALLY UNCONFIRMED TESTIMONY THAT McCAIN GAVE INFORMATION THAT RESULTED IN US AVIATORS BEING SHOT DOWN AND THAT McAIN WAS PROVIDED WITH PROSTITUTES.)

March 14, 1973 McCain released from captivity
Psychological tests, given to all the returning POWs, showed that McCain had “adjusted exceptionally well to repatriation” and had “an ambitious, striving, successful pattern of adjustment”.

Unlike many veterans, McCain did not experience flashbacks or nightmares of his Vietnam experience.

August 1974, he was assigned to the Replacement Air Group VA-174 “Hellrazors”.
Executive officer in 1975
July 1, 1976, commanding officer. This last assignment was controversial
some senior officers resented McCain’s presence as favoritism due to his father, junior officers rallied to him and helped him qualify for A-7 carrier landings McCain removed personnel he thought ineffective and sought to improve morale and productivity by establishing an informal rapport with enlisted men. Dealing with limited post-Vietnam defense budgets and parts shortages.

Although some operational metrics declined during the period the pilot safety metrics improved to the point of having zero accidents. The squadron was awarded its first Meritorious Unit Commendation in twenty-three years, while McCain received a Meritorious Service Medal. McCain later stated that being commanding officer of VA-174 was the most rewarding assignment of his naval career.

July 1977 McCain was appointed to the Senate Liaison Office within the Navy’s Office of Legislative Affairs. his office became a watering hole for Congressmen and Senators who liked to unwind there at the end of the weorking day.

As a Senator he is a salty blustery maverick.

McCAIN WOULD HAVE US LURCHING FROM CRISIS TO CRISIS

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 12:47 pm

A Pundit Not a President
stumble digg reddit del.ico.us news trust mixx.com Posted August 19, 2008 | 05:44 PM (EST)

Hffington Post

Matt Yglesias has a great post which really captures a key component of McCain’s foreign policy approach – it is rooted in hyperbolic rhetoric mixed with hysterical over reaction. As Matt describes it,

Not only is Russia on the march beyond Tbilisi to Ukraine, Finland, and substantial swathes of Poland but that’s not even the transcendent issue of our time. And North Korea’s nuclear program is “the greatest challenge to U.S. security and world stability today” but that’s not the transcendent issue of our time. And Islamism is the transcendent issue of our time, but not a serious international crisis or an especially great challenge to U.S. security and world stability. Now of course there’s no way to make sense of that, because it’s not supposed to make any kind of sense. McCain just thinks that overreacting is the right reaction to everything. It’s a hysteria-based foreign policy.

Each of those statements from McCain sound like they came from an excited media pundit. Well that’s because they did.

McCain’s approach and tone on foreign policy has always been more emblematic of a TV pundit rather than a sober president. While McCain has attacked Obama as the “celebrity” candidate, the fact is that a bad place to be over the last 25 years has been between John McCain and a TV camera. The New York Times on Sunday noted that one of the first things McCain did after 9-11 was go on just about every TV program – where he incidentally called for attacking about four countries. In its biographical series profiling the candidates the Times also noted that McCain was attracted to the celebrity of the Senate with one close associate noting that McCain “saw the glamour of it. I think he really got smitten with the celebrity of power.” McCain clearly enjoys being on television and he has been a constant commentator on the Sunday news shows and the evening talk news programs.

But TV appearances encourage sound bites, over-the-top rhetoric, and good one-liners, not reasoned and nuanced diplomatic language. This is especially true from guests who are not in the current administration, since you are less likely to get invited back on Face the Nation if you down play a crisis or take a boring nuanced position. Thus on almost every crisis or incident over the last decade, McCain has sounded the alarm, ratcheted up the rhetoric and often called for military action – with almost no regards to the practical implications of such an approach.

The big concern with a McCain presidency – a concern which I am surprised has not been vocalized more fully – is that the U.S. will lurch from crisis to crisis, confrontation to confrontation, whether it be with Iran, North Korea, Russia, Syria, Saudi Arabia, etc. The danger is that McCain’s pundit-like rhetoric will entrap the U.S. in descending spiral of foreign policy brinksmanship. Just think about the very likely scenario of McCain giving Iran/Russia a rhetorical ultimatum and Iran/Russia ignoring it. Now we are stuck – either we lose face by not following through on our threats or we follow through and go to war. We can’t afford such a reckless approach after the last eight years. For the next eight we need a president not a pundit.

October 10, 2008

THE McCAIN/PALIN STORY ABOUT BILL AYRES IS HOKEY AND CONTRIVED

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 2:53 pm

WE NEED TO LOOK AT THE WELL DOCUMENTED FACTS ABOUT McCAIN AND THE KEATING FIVE SCANDAL AND THE S&L BAILOUT IN THE ’80s.

McCAIN USED HIS POSITION AS A US SENATOR TO ACTIVELY HELP KEATING CAUSE 20,OOO PEOPLE TO LOSE THEIR LIFE SAVINGS AND COST TAXPAYERS 2 BILLION FOR THE LINCOLN SAVINGS BANK BAILOUT

October 7, 2008

JOHN McCAIN NOT ONLY PALLED AROUND WITH CHARLES KEATING, BUT HE HELPED KEATING COMMIT CRIMES.

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 5:56 pm

JOHN McCAIN , HIS FAMILY AND THE BABYSITTER WERE FLOWN IN CHARLES KEATING’S PRIVATE PLANE TO HIS HOME IN THE BAHAMAS 9 OR 10 TIMES.

This is significant on two distinct levels.

1. Charles Keating was McCain’s earliest and biggest supporter. Keating ultimately went to prison for 5 years for his part in the S & L fraud and among other things, 20,000 people lost their life savings.
McCain intervened with federal regulators on Keatings behalf. There is no question that McCain and Keating were very close. IT IS WELL DOCUMENTED THAT McCAIN OFFICIALLY INTERVENED AS A SENATOR ON KEATING’S BEHALF.

2. McCain, long accustomed to talking his way out of capers from high school on, received only a slap on the wrists. It was concluded that McCain showed poor judgement on a matter of banking regulation. That should have been a wake-up call for McCain . Lack of federal oversight of S & Ls was clearly the reason for the need for the government bailout then.

If McCain would have been a more responsible Senator, he would have made it his business to understand : economics, banking and government regulation of banking. In 2005 John Mccain said “I’m going to be honest: I know a lot less about economics than I do about military and foreign policy issues. I still need to be educated.”

McCain was never inclined to apply himself to rigorous intellectual inquiry at the Naval academy and has not changed since then.

And to whom did McCain turn to for advise? “His foremost economic guru,” the former Texas Sen. Phil Gramm whose crusade for deregulation has lead to the S&L crisis, ENRON (Gramm’s wife was on its board of directors.), the Sub-prime and oil futures trading abuses.

EXPERIENCE IS ONLY A GOOD TEACHER WHEN YOU LEARN FROM YOUR MISTAKES.

McCAIN DID NOT EVEN UNDERSTAND NOR APPARENTLY CARE THAT HE HAD MADE A MISTAKE IN THE S&L DISASTER
MCCAIN NOT ONLY DID NOT LEARN FROM HIS MISTAKE BUT HE HELPED TO PERPETUATE THE SAME POLICY THAT HAD CAUSED THE S&L CRISIS THAT WOULD GO ON AN CAUSE THE SUBPRIME MORTGAGE DEBACLE NOW.

McCAIN, DESPITE HIS YEARS OF MILITARY TRAINING AND DECADES OF EXPERIENCE IN FOREIGN AFFAIRS, DID NOT UNDERSTAND THAT AN IRAQ WAR WOULD BE A DUMB WAR.

OBAMA, WITHOUT THOSE YEARS OF SPECIAL MILITARY TRAINING AND DECADES OF “EXPERIENCE” CLEARLY STATED THAT iRAQ WOULD BE A DUMB WAR BECAUSE HE HAD COMMON SENSE AND GOOD JUDGEMENT.( But that is another story) but consider part of his speech in oct 2002.

I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States, or to his neighbors, that the Iraqi economy is in shambles, that the Iraqi military a fraction of its former strength, and that in concert with the international community he can be contained until, in the way of all petty dictators, he falls away into the dustbin of history.

I know that even a successful war against Iraq will require a US occupation of undetermined length, at undetermined cost, with undetermined consequences. I know that an invasion of Iraq without a clear rationale and without strong international support will only fan the flames of the Middle East, and encourage the worst, rather than best, impulses of the Arab world, and strengthen the recruitment arm of al-Qaeda.

I am not opposed to all wars. I’m opposed to dumb wars.

John McCain is entitled to be president because he was a POW

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 12:32 am

From: Middle Class Warrior
Date: Sat, 06 Sep 2008 13:56:15 -0400

This is the argument we heard over and over again at the RNC convention. John McCain, who spent 20 flying hours in he cockpit before he was shot down, is a war hero.

My own view is that John McCains’s POW status is irrelevant. This should be treated as a footnote, not a qualification for the presidency.

They didn’t mention the five aircraft mishaps he was involved in or the fact he was one of the only pilots in the US Navy that graduated in the bottom 1 per cent of his class at Annapolis. The didn’t mention the more than 600 pages of his USN record that were suppressed under the Freedom of Information Act.

The Republicans didn’t mention an combat awards for valor he received. John McCain received the Silver Star for being shot down. This very curious. See what David Hackworth said about John McCain’s so-called combat awards. He wrote this in 2000.

Are McCain’s handlers playing the wrong card?
By David H. Hackworth
January 25, 2000

John McCain is being hailed by the press as a “genuine war hero.” But is he a war hero in the conventional sense like Audie Murphy and John Glenn?

Or is his “war hero” status the creation of a very slick publicity campaign that plays on flag, duty, honor and country?

For sure, McCain has the fruitsalad: a Silver Star, a Legion of Merit for Valor, a Distinguished Flying Cross, three Bronze Stars , two Commendation medals plus two Purple Hearts and a dozen service gongs.

On a purely medal count basis, he outweighs Murphy and Glenn, who both for years repeatedly performed extraordinary deeds on the ground or in the air against an armed enemy.

McCain’s valor awards are based on what happened in 1967, when during his 23d mission over Vietnam, he was shot down, seriously injured, captured and then spent 5 1/2 brutal years as a POW.

In an attempt to find out exactly what the man did to earn these many hero awards, I asked his Senate office three times to provide copies of the narratives for each medal. I’m still waiting.

I next went to the Pentagon. Within a week, I received a recap of his medals and many of the narratives that give the details of what he did.

None of the awards, less the DFC, were for heroism over the battlefield where he spent no more than 20 hours. Two Naval officers described the awards as “boilerplate” and “part of an SOP medal package given to repatriated (Vietnamera) POWs.”

McCain’s Silver Star narrative for the period 27 October 1967 the day after he was shot down to 8 December 1968 reads: “His captors… subjected him to extreme mental and physical cruelties in an attempt to obtain military information and false confessions for propaganda purposes. Through his resistance to those brutalities, he contributed significantly towards the eventual abandonment…” of such harsh treatment by the North Vietnamese.

Yet in McCain’s own words just four days after being captured, he admits he violated the U.S. Code of Conduct by telling his captors “O.K, I’ll give you military information if you will take me to the hospital.”

A Vietnam vet detractor says, “He received the nation’s third highest award, the Silver Star, for treason. He provided aid and comfort to the enemy!”

The rest of his valor awards issued automatically every year while he was a POW read much like the Silver Star. More boilerplate often repeating the exact same words. An example: “By his heroic endeavors, exceptional skill, and devotion to duty, he reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the Naval Service and the United States Armed Forces.”

Yet McCain’s conduct while a POW negates these glowing comments. The facts are that he signed a confession and declared himself a “black criminal who performed deeds of an air pirate.” This statement and other interviews he gave to the Communist press press were used as propaganda to fan the flames of the antiwar movement.

Accounts by McCain and other writers tell of the horror he endured: relentlessly beatings, torture, broken limbs. All inflicted during savage interrogations. Yet no other POW was a witness to these accounts.
A former POW says “No man witnessed another man during interrogations… We relied on each other to tell the truth when a man was returned to his cell.”

The U.S. Navy says two eyewitnesses are required for any award of heroism. But for the valor awards McCain received, there are no eyewitnesses, less himself and his captors. And they’re not talking.

Our POWs in Vietnam were treated appallingly. The Viets would either break a POW or kill him. POWs provided info beyond name, rank and serial number or they didn’t come back.

Based on these stalwart men’s horrific experiences, the Code of Conduct has been changed. A POW says, “Now the training is to give them something… don’t risk permanent damage to health, mind or body.”
McCain refused an early release. An act of valor? Three former POWs told me he was ordered to turn it down by his U.S. POW commander and he “just followed orders.”

McCain certainly doesn’t appear to be a war hero by conventional standards, but rather a tough survivor whose handlers are overplaying the war hero card.

David H. Hackworth died in June 2005, he was a much-decorated and highly unconventional former career Army officer who became a combat legend in Vietnam. Col. Hackworth received 78 combat awards — including a Distinguished Service Cross, a Silver Star, a Bronze Star and eight Purple Hearts — during his 25-year military career which spanned the Korean and Vietnam wars..

.

October 6, 2008

John McCain Bottom Gun

Filed under: BARACK OBAMA, Bush, hillary clinton, John McCain, life, mideast, news, politics, Uncategorized, war — gasdocpol @ 2:27 pm

BOTTOM GUN by Tim Dikenson in Rolling Stone

In the cockpit, McCain was not a top gun, or even a middling gun. He took little interest in his flight manuals; he had other priorities.

“I enjoyed the off-duty life of a Navy flier more than I enjoyed the actual flying,” McCain writes. “I drove a Corvette, dated a lot, spent all my free hours at bars and beach parties.” McCain chased a lot of tail. He hit the dog track. Developed a taste for poker and dice. He picked up models when he could, screwed a stripper when he couldn’t.

In the air, the hard-partying McCain had a knack for stalling out his planes in midflight. He was still in training, in Texas, when he crashed his first plane into Corpus Christi Bay during a routine practice landing. The plane stalled, and McCain was knocked cold on impact. When he came to, the plane was underwater, and he had to swim to the surface to be rescued. Some might take such a near-death experience as a wake-up call: McCain took some painkillers and a nap, and then went out carousing that night.

Off duty on his Mediterranean tours, McCain frequented the casinos of Monte Carlo, cultivating his taste for what he calls the “addictive” game of craps. McCain’s thrill-seeking carried over into his day job. Flying over the south of Spain one day, he decided to deviate from his flight plan. Rocketing along mere feet above the ground, his plane sliced through a power line. His self-described “daredevil clowning” plunged much of the area into a blackout.

That should have been the end of McCain’s flying career. “In the Navy, if you crashed one airplane, nine times out of 10 you would lose your wings,” says Butler, who, like his former classmate, was shot down and taken prisoner in North Vietnam. Spark “a small international incident” like McCain had? Any other pilot would have “found themselves as the deck officer on a destroyer someplace in a hurry,” says Butler.

“But, God, he had family pull. He was directly related to the CEO — you know?”

McCain was undeterred by the crashes. Nearly a decade out of the academy, his career adrift, he decided he wanted to fly combat in Vietnam. His motivation wasn’t to contain communism or put his country first. It was the only way he could think of to earn the respect of the man he calls his “distant, inscrutable patriarch.” He needed to secure a command post in the Navy — and to do that, his career needed the jump-start that only a creditable war record could provide.

As he would so many times in his career, McCain pulled strings to get ahead. After a game of tennis, McCain prevailed upon the undersecretary of the Navy that he was ready for Vietnam, despite his abysmal flight record. Sure enough, McCain was soon transferred to McCain Field — an air base in Meridian, Mississippi, named after his grandfather — to train for a post on the carrier USS Forrestal.

With a close friend at the base, an alcoholic Marine captain, McCain formed the “Key Fess Yacht Club,” which quickly became infamous for hosting toga parties in the officers’ quarters and bringing bands down from Memphis to attract loose women to the base. Showing his usual knack for promotion, McCain rose from “vice commodore” to “commodore” of the club.

In 1964, while still at the base, McCain began a serious romance with Carol Shepp, a vivacious former model who had just divorced one of his classmates from Annapolis. Commandeering a Navy plane, McCain spent most weekends flying from Meridian to Philadelphia for their dates. They married the following summer.

That December, McCain crashed again. Flying back from Philadelphia, where he had joined in the reverie of the Army-Navy football game, McCain stalled while coming in for a refueling stop in Norfolk, Virginia. This time he managed to bail out at 1,000 feet. As his parachute deployed, his plane thundered into the trees below.

By now, however, McCain’s flying privileges were virtually irrevocable — and he knew it. On one of his runs at McCain Field, when ground control put him in a holding pattern, the lieutenant commander once again pulled his family’s rank. “Let me land,” McCain demanded over his radio, “or I’ll take my field and go home!”

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