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How John McCain Contributed To His Own Abuse At The Hands of The Totally Predictable Mobbed-Up, Sociopathic Cruelty Of The Trump Administration

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Kelly Sadler, D.C.-based comic who specializes in brain cancer jokes.


Everyone by now knows the name of Kelly Sadler, the White House aide who is the apparent "victim” of people “leaking” the actual words that come out of her mouth.

Sadler, like all of us at some point, apparently made a "badly considered joke that fell flat," but unlike most of us who are mammals, the “joke” was about the deteriorating health of Senator John McCain.

Kelly Sadler's awful, inhuman "joke" about Senator John McCain

This is a horrible thing to say, but perfectly in character for horrible people working in a horrible administration that promotes horrible policies.

But I must object to the media’s blind acceptance that Sadler’s statement was just a "bad joke" in poor taste. There’s no evidence that Sadler said, “Knock Knock? (Who’s There?) John McCain! (John McCain Who?) John McCain’s Dying… Thanks, folks, tip your servers, God, I’m Gross!” No, she was making a coldly calculated observation about how the Trump administration’s political fortunes would demonstrably improve once McCain was out of the way. It’s the political equivalent of a protection racket shakedown: “Nice fair-trade coffee shop ya got here, shame if it caught fire in the middle of the night and burned to the ground” is neither a joke nor a gentle reminder to check the batteries in your smoke detectors, it’s extortion.

For legal purposes, I should clarify that I don’t believe Sadler was suggesting anyone “knock off” McCain but I do think the Trump White House is not that far removed in moral turpitude from an organized crime family, sitting around discussing how to handle a troublesome witness when the “consigliere” or whatever shrugs and says, “Why bother? They’ll be dead before it gets to trial… totally due to natural causes. I mean, she's an old lady and it's been a tough winter."

I’m also bored of the response from the media and Democrats, who insist on pretending that the Trump White House is like any other lousy Republican administration that is at some level capable of shame and other human-approximate emotions. There’s literally an article each day where someone claims it’s “beyond their comprehension” that Sadler still has her job or that the White House hasn’t publicly apologized. Oh, here’s today’s:

Bernie Sanders shocks easily.

Imagine if The Exorcist was just two hours of Ellen Burstyn expressing constant surprise that Linda Blair was projectile vomiting at people and spinning her head around without Burstyn ever calling in Max von Sydow. “It’s just beyond my comprehension that my daughter’s crudely pleasuring herself with a crucifix. That’s not how non-possessed-by-Satan daughters should behave.” Would anyone have sat through this? But that’s what we’re forced to endure with every new Trump outrage.

“This is rock bottom!” declared Joe Biden with all the certainty of middle-aged music critics thirty years ago about Madonna: “That’s it. She’s done! It’s literally impossible to shock audiences more than wearing a cone-shaped bra. You’d have to release a book of naughty photos literally titled SEX. And who does that?”

So, the Trump White House will continue to “shock” and continue to find another level to sink below the currently declared “rock bottom” because no one wants to believe how truly awful they all are.

And while McCain doesn't deserve this treatment, he's not entirely blameless for why he's on the receiving end of it. He tepidly endorsed this mess and then at the eleventh hour retracted the endorsement but still refused to publicly support Hillary Clinton, instead writing in Mickey Mouse or his own name (c’mon, we know the latter is what actually happened). I totally respect someone enduring five years of brutal torture, but it’s just really disappointing when that same person can’t “endure” pulling the lever for a woman Democrat no matter what his country club pals might think.

This is the same John McCain who thought Sarah Palin was temperamentally and intellectually and morally and experientially qualified to stand even Usain Bolt's resting heartbeat away from the presidency. Well, actually, he didn’t. He thought Joe Lieberman was, but he caved to pressure from Christian conservatives and chose Palin because… it’s still uncertain. Maybe she was the only one home?

Steve Schmidt defended his former boss in a blistering attack on the Trump White House, describing the current president as “small and vile and mean and cruel and narcissistic.” This is all true, but it’s also true of Palin, who during the 2008 presidential campaign offered a repulsive preview of the “Obama isn’t like you and me — wink, wink, nudge, nudge, I’m racist” rhetoric that would prove the foundation of right-wing media’s coverage of the Obama presidency. It also paved the way for Trump’s ridiculous “Obama wasn’t born in the US and also helped fake the moon landing when he was 8” conspiracy theory, which no prominent Republican ever convincingly denounced.

Palin, who no one outside Alaska and Wonkette would know without McCain, willingly endorsed Trump — a man who ridiculed McCain’s time as a POW. Though given how deranged her endorsement speech was, it's possible she was trying to do McCain a solid and sabotage Trump's campaign from the inside.

The GOP has never fully embraced McCain, despite his war hero status. He lost the 2000 primary to George W. Bush, whose own military service involved catching Apocalypse Now in a Texas drive-in, and struggled to win over Christian conservatives in the 2008 primary (the same people who’d later embrace Caligula cosplayer Donald Trump). He was frankly more popular among the left as the “Republican they could see themselves voting for” (a role Jack Kemp previously filled). Jon Stewart was certainly chummier with McCain than, say, Sean Hannity.

If McCain had truly been a “maverick” in 2016 and defied both Trump and his party, endorsing Hillary Clinton and perhaps even denying Trump a win in his home state (Arizona was closer than Ohio), he could’ve ended his career on a far more positive note than being mocked by Trump’s gang of hate. And if Clinton had won, it’s highly likely McCain would’ve been on the short list for Secretary of State or Ambassador to Someplace Tropical. At the very least, no one in a Clinton White House would’ve “joked” about McCain’s eventual succumbing to brain cancer while placing their lunch order from a DC deli.

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Stephen Robinson

Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Seattle. However, he's more reliable for food and drink recommendations in Portland, where he spends a lot of time for theatre work.

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I'd mentioned this week that there's definitely probably a tape out there of Donald Trump referring to a black person as a "nigger," because Trump is a racist and that's sort of what they do. Sarah Huckabee Sanders won't even affirmatively deny such a tape exists, and she's from the "two plus two equals five" school of communications management. I also speculated that once the tape was released, Republican supporters of the president would flock to defend his vile words: "Hey, if you rearrange the letters in "nigger," you get "ginger" and who doesn't like redheads and the occasional Dark 'n' Stormy?"

The shameful display has already started and the supposed recording isn't even available for pre-order on iTunes. Georgia State Senator Michael Williams stated in appearance on CNN's "New Day Saturday" that if Trump -- who's the president, by the way -- did say "nigger," it would certainly concern him as an "individual" but "not necessarily as a person that is running our country." So, uh, what the hell is that? This has been a standard argument from Republicans ever since Trump crawled his way out of the sewers of birtherism and onto a major political stage: "We think Trump is a terrible human being -- seriously, we have to shower immediately after meeting with him -- but we still think he's a suitable steward of the most powerful nation on the planet."

Normally, you'd think this would work the other way. You know, your brother-in-law is a nice enough guy. Your sister certainly could've done worse. You don't mind the slightly rambling sports-ball discussions with him at family gatherings. He's good for looking after the kids (as long as your sister is present or reachable by cell), but you'd never invest your hard-earned money into whatever half-assed business venture he's trying to get off the ground nor would you back his run for any serious political office.

I've long had issues with the "brilliant asshole" archetype in TV and movies. It's almost always a white male (because women and minorities must be perfect) whose emotional immaturity and overall jerkass behavior we're told to overlook because they're so goshdarned awesome. Do you want some PC "cuck" or do you want Dr. House to figure out that the MS symptoms you're suffering are really just because you ate a stale doughnut? Sherlock Holmes doesn't have time for your feelings or social niceties -- not while he's solving mysteries and being dreamy.

Trump, however, isn't "brilliant." He's just a guy who says "nigger." They're hardly a scarcity in the market. You don't even have to venture out to a klan rally to find one. You can order online -- same day social media delivery.

Williams argues that Trump didn't use the word "nigger" when he was in the "office of the president." It was just some youthful indiscretion when he was almost 60. I don't even know where he's going with this. Does he think Trump has changed? He routinely insults and belittles black people. He also calls black NFL players who peacefully protest "sons of bitches." Was that his way of weaning off calling us "niggers"? Has he been wearing a "nigger" patch on his arm to control his cravings for the racial epithet?

"He used the word in his personal life," Williams said. (It was actually in a workplace context -- SER) "Now if he were president and were to go on TV and use the n-word, I'd have a major problem with that."

media.giphy.com

It's heartening repulsive to see that Williams draws the line at Trump holding an official "nigger" press conference. I think once we reach that point, Trump will probably also reveal that his buddies on the Supreme Court discovered a typo in the Thirteenth Amendment and black folks' work-life balance will start to really suffer.

"I will always say using the n-word is wrong, and it's bad, and should never be accepted in our society. But just because (Trump) might have done it years ago, not as our president, doesn't mean we need to continue to berate him because he used it," GOP state Sen. Michael Williams, who is white, told CNN's Victor Blackwell on "New Day Saturday."

Blackwell, who is black, had to sit there and listen to this crap from a white elected official who is just 45 years old. You know, the word "nigger" doesn't even appear in the Dred Scott decision, for example, but that's not necessary for reasonable people to understand that it was racist as hell. We all know Trump is racist, but now Republicans can't even repudiate the worst demonstrations of his racial animus. The first black president hasn't even been out of office for two full years and already "nigger" is being redefined. What would once end a campaign in its tracks when Blackwell and I were growing up is now just an "oops, my bad."

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