Candidate McCain Violates U.S. Naval Academy Honor Code
During the Republican convention in St. Paul, Fred Thompson offered a folksy if bizarre recounting of John McCain's rebellious days at the United States Naval Academy. But while McCain's bottom-of-his-class record there was "loaded with demerits," Thompson assured Americans, "he never violated the honor code." That may or may not have been true about John McCain's days at Annapolis. But there can be no doubt that with his avalanche of lies, distortions and smears, candidate John McCain is violating that code today.
In 1953, midshipman H. Ross Perot (you can't make this stuff up) drafted an honor system for officers of the Naval Service. He wrote:
Honor, personal integrity, and loyalty to the service, its customs and its traditions, are fundamental characteristics essential to a successful Naval Officer. Any midshipman unable to conduct himself at all times in a manner indicating the highest standards of honesty, integrity, and manliness, is unfit to hold a commission in the Navy or to enjoy the privilege of being a member of the Brigade. Therefore, any midshipman guilty of offenses of a dishonest nature, such as Falsehood (including any form of deception or attempt to deceive) or Fraud (including false muster- answering for another at muster, or any form of cheating) or of offenses indicating Moral Turpitude, is an individual intolerable to the Brigade, and becomes immediately subject to a recommendation for dismissal from the Naval Service.
"Midshipmen are persons of integrity: They stand for that which is right.
They tell the truth and ensure that the full truth is known. They do not lie.
They embrace fairness in all actions. They ensure that work submitted as their own is their own, and that assistance received from any source is authorized and properly documented. They do not cheat.
They respect the property of others and ensure that others are able to benefit from the use of their own property. They do not steal."
By either reading, presidential candidate John McCain has established himself as anything but a "person of integrity." With his endless falsehoods and frauds when it comes to savaging Barack Obama or rewriting the record of his running mate Sarah Palin, John McCain hasn't put either the truth or his country first.
As I noted earlier today, Team McCain's mountain of falsehoods about Sarah Palin's history on earmarks, travel to Iraq, national security and energy expertise and the Bridge to Nowhere have grown to almost comic proportions. (On the earmark issue. even the reliably Republican Wall Street Journal weighed in on the reality of Palin's pork-barrel pursuit.) Editorial boards across the nation branded McCain's ads and statements "intellectually dishonest", "deceptive", "double-speak", "a fictional narrative" and a "campaign of lies." On Saturday, NBC's Mark Murray in a piece simply titled, "Wheels Come off Straight Talk Express?" documented "a brutal day for John McCain and his campaign" as the chorus of press criticism reached a crescendo.
On Sunday, even the excreable Karl Rove acknowledged John McCain had "gone, in some of his ads...one step too far, and sort of attributing to Obama things that are, you know, beyond the 100 percent truth test."
During his St. Paul speech, Fred Thompson offered a moving account of John McCain's Vietnam service to America. He also made a point of emphasizing that "being a POW certainly doesn't qualify anyone to be president. But it does reveal character." And no doubt, so does McCain's behavior since.
Sadly, airman McCain's legend as a naval pilot is now a distant memory, his reputation shredded and tarnished at the hands of Senator McCain. Candidate McCain has violated the Naval Academy's honor concept for officers that "They tell the truth and ensure that the full truth is known. They do not lie."
And yet in a final irony, John McCain wants Americans to put him in the White House after engaging behavior that would apparently get him thrown out of the Naval Academy.