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The big question about the election these days is "What's up with McCain?"  On every issue under the sun, McCain seems completely out of control, so what's the deal?

There's evidence that what we're seeing is an example of Reckless Ambition at the highest levels, similar what we've seen over the last 8 years:

Why flip-flop on Massive Financial Bailouts? - reckless ambition.
Why suddenly re-brand yourself a regulating reformer after 26 years as an anti-regulation zelot? - reckless ambition.
Why run a despicable, insulting, smear-filled, Pro-lie campaign? - reckless ambition.
Why select an unqualified base-stoking zelot as your running mate?- reckless ambition.
Why risk war with SPAIN to hide any possible hint of creeping senility? - reckless ambition.

I've been trying to puzzle it out.  There do seem to be some clues.  

First, take a look at this from a recent Politico profile:

In his 2002 memoir, 'Worth the Fighting For,' he wrote, revealingly, 'I didn't decide to run for president to start a national crusade for the political reforms I believed in or to run a campaign as if it were some grand act of patriotism. In truth, I wanted to be president because it had become my ambition to be president. . . . In truth, I'd had the ambition for a long time.'

MMM... sounds like we've got a guy running full head of steam on "ambition".

Now this from a recent WaPo profile:

"I think his mind is visceral," Hart said, "driven less by thought and more by feelings. This doesn't mean he's totally reactive or without logic or thought processes; it just means he's a fighter pilot. He reacts to circumstances."

A senior official in the Clinton administration who worked with McCain on Bosnia and Kosovo, where McCain defied most of his Republican colleagues to support strong U.S. action against Serbia, agreed. "In the many, many years that I've been in Washington," this former official said, insisting on anonymity to avoid upsetting McCain, "John McCain is far and away the most emotional politician I have ever met."

Crosspost at

"McCain is all emotion," the former official continued. "People don't understand that, so they keep talking about his temperament, his temper. He reacts emotionally, therefore unpredictably."

Take overwhelming emotion and add driving ambition and what do you get?  We've seen it in Bush in the last 8 years and in the McCain campaign in the last 18 months.  McCain will do anything, say anything, betray his own honor, shirk his responsibilities as a candidate, tell any lie, throw any smear, in order to fulfill his RECKLESS AMBITION to be president.  After 8 years of this reckless ambition stuff, maybe it's time for a change.

crosspost at

Originally posted to 5oclockshadow on Thu Sep 18, 2008 at 02:16 PM PDT.

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