Attn: SoCal Reasonoids—McCainapalooza Tour!


This Sunday, May 4, I will be at the Palm Springs Book Festival, hawking McCain: The Myth of a Maverick, and appearing on two panel discussions: 1) "The Presidential Race," at 1:00 p.m., featuring Hugh "A Mormon in the White House?" Hewitt, Robert "The Pornography of Power" Scheer, Greg "Armed Madhouse" Palast, and John "Pure Goldwater" Dean. And 2) "American Imperialism and its Consequences," at 4:30 p.m., with Chalmers "Nemesis" Johnson. Between those sessions there will be an interesting-sounding discussion on Barry Goldwater.

Can't make it to the land of shag carpets and fabulous waiters? There will be other opportunities to hurl pricey foodstuffs in my general direction. On Saturday, May 10, I'll be speaking at a meeting of the Rancho Palos Verdes Democrats (both of them?), details to come. On Wednesday, May 14 at 7:00 p.m., I'm apparently delivering a lecture at the Pasadena Public Library.

And on Thursday, May 15 at 7:00 p.m. comes the big enchilada—"Deconstructing McCain," a Zocalo L.A. event at the gorgeous Los Angeles Central Library.

Each and every one of thse will feature plenty of time for cross-examination, semi-hostile discussion, and book signing. Most will involve (please Jeebus) some post-game libations.

Speaking of John Dean, he's got a new piece out today about the testy relationship between McCain and the maverick senator he replaced, Barry Goldwater; something you can basically read about in our two books, and nowhere else. Here's an excerpt:

Although Goldwater initially supported McCain's run for the Senate, Goldwater knew an opportunist when he saw one, and did not like any of them. We chose not to dwell on the McCain/Goldwater relationship in Pure Goldwater, but we did report how, after assisting McCain win his Senate seat, Goldwater was forced to pull McCain up short for using his good name for fundraising, when McCain had tarnished his own name because of his involvement with the Keating Five. We also included correspondence to shows that McCain is not very good at keeping his word.

To know Goldwater—as we believe those who read his unpublished private journal will—is to understand how different these men are, and to see that McCain is cut from very different cloth than Goldwater. Goldwater considered public service a high calling, not an ego trip or power play. McCain was fortunate that Goldwater never publicly exposed him, but Goldwater was too good a Republican to do that and he thought too highly of McCain's father to sink his successor in the Senate.

Had Goldwater publicized what I believe to be his true feelings about John McCain, I doubt McCain would be the presumptive nominee of the GOP in 2008. Goldwater's political perceptions of others have proven extraordinarily prescient, so his reaction toward McCain is telling.

Look for Daniel McCarthy's review of Pure Goldwater in our June issue. And check out Nick Gillespie's 2006 review of Dean's Conservatives Without Conscience.