I usually find the ubiquity of celebrity death watches on this world wide web of ours morbid, as everyone ought, but there’s no denying that the August 25  passing of one of the denizens of that list – the gorgon John McCain – made my day. Not just my day, either. For the first time in collective memory, both the extreme left and the extreme right had a common cause to celebrate in tandem:
[Picture with the text “John McCain is dead” written at the top, followed by a Political Compass in which each of the four quadrants has a picture of a cheering guy and a picture of a crying woman is at the center]
The pundit class always bemoans the lack of ‘bipartisanship’ these days. Well, here’s what you’re looking for, baby! For a couple of days, anyway.
That still leaves plenty of room for the maudlin middle – in both its liberal and especially risable cohenservative wings – to signal its collective virtue via expressions of sycophantic tribute, to placate I know not whom. Or, to put it a less delicate way, the brown-nosing underway in honor of Songbird’s memory is positively nauseating. Here’s a fun drinking game: take a shot every time you run across a news item referring to McCain as a ‘hero’. (Faith & Heritage assumes no responsibility for resulting liver damage or sustained spiritual trauma if you happen to be a Baptist.)
Of course, the cascade of crocodile tears culminated in a week-long funerary jaunt from coast to coast, with stops at every conceivably relevant venue – from the Arizona state Capitol to the DC Capitol to the National Cathedral to the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial to the US Naval Academy. Such an unwieldy procession brings to mind nothing more dignified than one of the Rolling Stones’ interminable ‘farewell’ tours, or perhaps a spurious bleeding Marian icon making a pilgrimage through some of the more superstitious backwaters of rural Italy. At every stop, scads of crowds withstood late summer temperatures to pay their respects to Famous Dead Guy. The unlikeliest of illustrious potentates attended his funeral – all the surviving presidents, plus everyone from Joe Biden to Henry Kissinger to retired Diamondbacks outfielder Luis Gonzalez to Warren Beatty (!!!!) All of this, I might add, for a mere senator. His having been a presidential candidate as well had little to do with all this pomp and circumstance. I don’t recollect similar hosannas being lauded upon the passing of, say, George McGovern.
Well into the month of September, lamestream media outposts on the right and on the left engaged in a pitched battle of dueling banjos to see who could sing this stalwart warrior into Valhalla with the sweetest melody. Things got downright surreal when Stevie Wonder, of all people, dedicated a song to McCain during a concert. No word as to whether radio stations with an 80s format suspended airplay of Tina Turner’s “We Don’t Need Another Hero,” but given the trajectory I think that’s a given.
To paraphrase Creedence Clearwater Revival: Senator McCain, you are one fortunate son, sir. This astonishing national love-in permeated down to the level of us mere plebians. If you dared mention the fact that our dearly departed treasure had more than a couple of black marks on his record, your normie friends and family (assuming you have any) would have reacted as though you had sent your grandmother to live in a tent in the backyard during a polar vortex. “How DARE you???? Don’t you know he was a HERO??? A WAR hero???? What have you done with your life? Show some respect!!! You’re just a damned North Korean!!!!” Sound familiar? Maybe, if they were of a liberal bent, they would have qualified their indignation ever so slightly: “Yes, I didn’t agree with all his politics either, but that’s beside the point now!!! How can you sit there and speak ill of the dead??? You’re just a damned North Korean!!!!” Where do these people come up with their great ideas?
This, of course, leads to a wider theological question: where, exactly, is it written that to speak ill of the recently-departed dead is sin? If we are to affirm that it is indeed found in the Scriptures ‘somewhere’, then we also must reckon God a sinner, as He ordained the harlot Jezebel’s torso to be ‘disrespectfully’ dragged off by dogs after she had not been dead from her great fall even one day (II Kings 9:30-37), to cite just one example. Or could it just be that we don’t find such postmortem criticism cricket? Well, that’s just too bad, isn’t it? Marquis of Queensbury rules have not been canonized, last time I checked.
And leaving aside McCain himself for a second, of what possible benefit can it be to anyone to sing the praises of an unrepentant reprobate who has just passed on? In the New Age-y vernacular of the times, all funerals are a ‘celebration of life’. Who in their right mind would celebrate a life that had been utterly wasted on evil vanities? Anyone who would desire to be memorialized with lying tributes warrants nothing more than an unmarked grave. Such tributes can also be viewed as an egregious violation of the Fifth Commandment. Can any good be brought upon a mother or father by mealy-mouthed flatteries designed to act as the hollowest of reassurances rather than as a summation of a life to be learned from for those who yet walk upon the earth? We honor our ancestors. We don’t worship them.
More to the point of the subject at hand: I can find zero excuse for joining with the Consensus Chorus and lauding McCain as a hero.
It is not heroic to cause a fire on board an aircraft carrier that kills 134 crewmen because you ignited a Zuni rocket on your jet fighter after wet-starting it in a pointless show of bravado.
It is not heroic to get your daddy – the admiral in charge of the US Navy’s entire Pacific fleet – to intervene so that this shameful incident will be expunged from your record.
It is not heroic to get shot down over North Vietnam because you were flying too low – well within radar range – in direct contravention of orders. Again, because you were hotdogging.
It is not heroic to chirp like a canary towards your NVA captors so that you can get an extra Ritz cracker with your daily bowl of fishheads and rats.
It is especially unheroic to agree to broadcast Communist agitprop over North Vietnamese radio – which broadcasts would be duly re-aired on a wider frequency so that Voice of America could intercept them.
It is not heroic to justify this treason later in your career by whining about the ‘torture’ you underwent.
It is not heroic to divorce your first wife because she was ‘kind of a drag’ after undergoing years of therapy to recover from a near-fatal car accident.
It is not heroic to commit adultery against your first wife by jetting off for trysts across the country with your current wife.
It is not heroic to allow yourself to be wined, dined, and bribed by chief savings & loan crook Charles Keating, to blatantly lie about your involvement with him before television cameras, and to gain a reputation as the most unscrupulous of the notorious Keating Five…all in your freshman term in the Senate.
It is not heroic to make your mark in the Senate as its preeminent chickenhawk, gleefully acquiescing in any and every war that serves Israel’s interests, and to codify that status via stupid stunts like singing about bombing Iran.
It is not heroic to submit a bill calling for women to be subject to draft registration.
It is not heroic to have yourself photographed with Syrian ‘freedom fighters’ connected with ISIS, and proudly posting such on your Twitter feed.
It is not heroic to allow the laughably left-wing partisan Snopes to refute most of the above points as ‘conspiracy theories’.
And finally, it not only is not heroic but is exceptionally creepy to insist that everyone who attends your funeral services RSVP beforehand. What are you, a Rothschild?
This is only the stuff that is on the public record, as well. If we are to factor in the doubtless numerous skeletons in his closet, McCain’s life becomes all the more damning. Suffice it to say that while I am not a fan of Donald Trump, he was spot on the money when he said that it takes more than sitting in a tropical prison cell for half a decade to constitute a hero. I can see no good out of pretending otherwise now that Son of Cain is safely ensconced in Gehenna.
I can think of no better concluding remark than that proffered by Mark Dice: “Is John McCain’s funeral over yet?”