Sunday, August 26, 2018

no tears for John McCain

The recent news is that Senator John McCain, who has generally acted more like a Democrat than like a Republican, has given up further treatment of his brain cancer, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). Styx, at his channel, has long professed scorn for McCain, and when the senator's cancer was announced, Styx was ecstatic, proclaiming that the old war veteran couldn't die fast enough for his (Styx's) tastes.

With the news that McCain has given up treatment, Styx has made the following vid:

I don't share Styx's visceral hatred for the man, but I agree that Senator McCain wasted the last decade or so being an unnecessary thorn in the side of his own party when he could have been more constructive and productive. Most recently, he stood in the way of President Trump's attempt to uproot Obamacare—a jab that may still have consequences come this November, during the midterm elections. On some level, I can understand McCain's animus toward the current president, who did, after all, go out of his way to deflate the whole war-hero mystique surrounding McCain. Trump's gibes were gauche and possibly even uncalled-for, yet at the same time, it may have been beneficial to the public to skewer this particular sacred cow because, for the longest time, it had been almost impossible to discuss anything McCain said or did without risking the appearance of defaming one of the country's most beloved veterans. Trump revealed that the emperor had no clothes, and McCain was furious at having his bubble burst. Fortunately or unfortunately, this fury has led McCain to focus almost solely on Trump when he should have been taking time to get treatment and to celebrate a long senatorial career. I almost want to wince as I watch the old man go down in flames, yet another victim of the much-ballyhooed "Trump Effect."

On a personal note: I watched from afar as GBM took down Senator Ted Kennedy, then I watched up close as GBM took my own mother. I knew there was no way Senator McCain was going to live until this Christmas: he'd been diagnosed last summer, and it's been a whole year. GBM victims typically live about 12 months after diagnosis; Ted Kennedy beat that average by about three months; my mother went under that average by about three months. Senator Kennedy had, as I've written before, all the king's horses and all the king's men at his disposal, but GBM isn't a cancer that gives a damn about how rich or famous or powerful you are. I've seen no reason for Senator McCain's trajectory to be any different; the stats are the stats. And while I can't say I agree with or even like the man, my grim wish for McCain is that he die like a soldier, stoically and unflinchingly facing his own end.


John Mac said...

Well said. He lost his moral compass as a politician but I still honor his service to our nation.

Is there pain associated with this type of cancer?

Kevin Kim said...

The brain itself actually has no pain receptors, but the tumor's effect on the brain and mind can cause feelings of pain to occur elsewhere in the body. Much depends on the tumor's location. In my mother's case, Mom managed to avoid pain and seizures; her tumors, as they grew and multiplied, simply made her quieter and less emotive.

John Mac said...

Good to know...honestly whatever takes me I hope is relatively pain free.