Wednesday, June 04, 2008


Reason for Referral:

John McCain was referred by the Junto Boys for a Psychological Evaluation to assess his mental fitness to become the next President of the United States.

Sources of Information and Procedures Employed:

Psychological Evaluation of Dr. Fernando Barral (Spanish/Cuban Psychiatrist who had interviewed McCain at the Hanoi Hilton)
The Real McCain (A Biography) by Cliff Schechter
Dr. Jeffrey L. Moore and Dr. Michael R. Ambrose, Navy Physicians who examined McCain upon his return to US Soil and evaluated him for the next 20 years as part of a longitudinal Prisoner of War Study program.
Thousands of Hours of Video, Audio, and Print Interviews
The Congressional Senate Record
Commentary and Comments from Friends and Colleagues
Analysis by the Junto Boys and other Bloggers

NOTE: John McCain released everything about his repeated cancer surgeries and general Medical records recently. However, he won't release his psychiatric records, which hold clues to the effect of his Vietnam captivity, which included two years in solitary confinement. It is well documented that the sort of treatment McCain endured can harm the mind. (What would the American people be more harmed by, a President with a physical ailment such as cancer, or an imbalanced, hostile, potentially dangerous person but functional enough to get through the election?)

Background Information:

McCain was born August 29, 1936 in Coco Solo in the U.S controlled Panama Canal Zone (Some Constitutional scholars have argued that this would not make McCain "native born" and thus ineligible for the Presidential post. While others have argued that being American controlled territory makes it "American Soil" which passes the Constitutional litmus test) . After high school graduation in 1954, McCain entered the United States Naval Academy and graduated in 1958 (He followed in his Father's footsteps who was a Naval Admiral). McCain became a Captain in the United States Navy. On October 26, 1967, McCain was shot down over Vietnam, and was held as a prisoner of war in Hanoi for five-and-a-half years, mostly in the infamous Hanoi Hilton. (This certainly meets the criteria for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, of which there is no evidence that McCain was ever treated). He was released from captivity in 1973. He was honorably discharged upon his retirement from the Navy in 1981.

During his military career he received a Silver Star, a Bronze Star, the Legion of Merit, the Purple Heart, and a Distinguished Flying Cross.
He is married to Cindy Hensley McCain. When John Jacob Rhodes, the longtime congressman from Arizona's First Congressional district, announced his retirement, McCain successfully ran for the seat in 1982. In 1986, upon Senator Barry Goldwater's retirement, McCain was elected to succeed him.

McCain touts himself as a conservative on many fiscal issues, but moderate on social issues causing some conservatives to ridicule him as a Republican In Name Only (AKA RINO). His appeal during the 2000 presidential campaign was based on style and personal image rather than any label of liberal, conservative, moderate or libertarian (Although McCain touts his Maverick image like a medal of honor, this inability to be true to a core belief system may indicate a profound identity crisis and inability to truly know himself. Further, it may suggest an over identification with the personal, or public image, and may lead to a crisis of identity at any time).

McCain is often called a "maverick senator" because of his willingness to break with the party line. (This could also be seen as readily willing and able to betray those he formerly allied with). He was one of only four Republicans in the entire U.S. Congress to vote against the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act. He was the only Republican senator to vote against the Telecommunications Act of 1995, which he called "the biggest rip-off since the Teapot Dome Scandal." He was also the only Republican senator to vote against the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996, which phased out many of the farming subsidy programs put into place during the Great Depression. His concerns over global warming and other environmental issues have also put him at odds with the Bush administration and other Republicans. In addition, he voted against the Federal Marriage Amendment, reaffirming his position as a social moderate. (AKA Flip-Flopper).

A new biography about the GOP Presidential nominee, The Real McCain by Cliff Schechter, reveals a disturbing incident in which a hot-headed John McCain humiliated his wife in front of campaign aides and the press with a monumental blow-up. According to the book, "Three reporters from Arizona, on the condition of anonymity, also let me in on another incident involving McCain's intemperateness. In his 1992 Senate bid, McCain was joined on the campaign trail by his wife, Cindy, as well as campaign aide Doug Cole and consultant Wes Gullett. At one point, Cindy playfully twirled McCain's hair and said, 'You're getting a little thin up there.' McCain's face reddened, and he responded, 'At least I don't plaster on the makeup like a trollop, you c--t.' [EXPLETIVE IS NOT DELETED OR MODIFIED IN THE BOOK] McCain's excuse was that it had been a long day. If elected president of the United States, McCain would have many long days."

Personality Functioning:

During the 1999, Republican primary, Aubrey Immelman, reviewed a variety of previously cited reports on John McCain. Medical records released in 1999 indicated that, psychologically, Arizona senator John McCain is the most scrutinized presidential candidate in U.S. history. The senator participated in a prisoner-of-war study for 20 years following his release in 1973, undergoing extensive physical and mental evaluations. In their report, Dr. Jeffrey L. Moore and Dr. Michael R. Ambrose, conclude, "[Sen. McCain] has been subject to an extensive battery of psychological tests and following his last examination in 1993, we judged him to be in good physical and mental health."

The first account of McCain’s psychological functioning that I have been able to find in the public record is an ideologically skewed diatribe published Jan. 24, 1970 in Havana. The article reports the clinical impressions of Dr. Fernando Barral, a Spanish psychiatrist living in Cuba who had interviewed McCain during his captivity in Hanoi. Barral recounted his impressions of McCain (Currently Barral runs a small restaurant in Cuba where he has proudly framed his Psychological Evaluation of John McCain). Barral was surprised when his North Vietnamese handlers offered to arrange for him to interview a captured pilot. Two days later he was taken to the office of the Committee for Foreign Cultural Relations in Hanoi. The future Republican presidential nominee walked in unchained, Barral said, wearing an overall and a towel around his neck. The two men sat down over coffee and oranges with a translator. McCain "seemed very sure of himself and happy to talk," said Barral, who identified himself only as a Spanish psychiatrist, not mentioning that he worked for the Cuban state security services. McCain described how surprised he had been when he was shot down over Hanoi in October 1967 and landed in the middle of a lake in the city. He was injured when he ejected, breaking several limbs, and was dumped into a cell with no medical treatment for several days. He also described his career in the military, mentioned that his father was an admiral and head of U.S. forces in the Pacific, and said his wife was a model. He was in better condition by the time Barral saw him, but he didn't earn much sympathy from the Spaniard. Barral described him in the article as "an insensitive individual without human depth," who showed no remorse for his bombing of civilians. "I believe that he has bombed densely populated places for sport," he added. McCain recalled the interview years later in his memoirs, Faith of My Fathers, describing Barral as "a Cuban propagandist masquerading as a psychiatrist and moonlighting as a journalist." McCain and other POWs have alleged that several Cuban agents were involved in the torture of American prisoners, but none has ever been positively identified. The allegation was vehemently denied by Fidel Castro in a recent newspaper column that called it "completely unethical." Cuba was a firm ally of North Vietnam and maintained an embassy in Hanoi. But though Cuban troops and military advisers famously participated in conflicts in Africa, none was ever sent to fight in the Vietnam War. Barral says he was not sent there by the Cuban government with any propaganda purpose in mind. "It was my own initiative, and it was never my plan to interview a prisoner," he said. Although he didn't give away any secrets, McCain recognizes that he violated the military's Code of Conduct in agreeing to be interviewed. The code advises American prisoners of war to give only name, rank, service number and date of birth. Under interrogation captured military personnel should "evade answering further questions to the utmost of my ability.
This patently invalid psychological profile characterized McCain as psychologically balanced yet egotistical and insensitive to his "criminal acts" of war, and hardened to the plight of his Vietnamese victims. Taken at face value, Dr. Barral’s impressions suggest a narcissistic, sadistic character structure.

More credible than Barral’s account are references in the McCain campaign’s 1999 released report to "a histrionic pattern of personality adjustment." According to the Associated Press, Dr. Ambrose, director of the Robert E. Mitchell Center for Prisoner of War Studies, explained that this meant "an outgoing personality." Although this oversimplified definition of the personality pattern sounds less ominous than "histrionic," the psychiatric label is no cause for concern when viewed in context. True, the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV) has a classification for "histrionic personality disorder," but it is worth noting that McCain’s examiners did not use the term "disorder."

Thus, we can safely conclude that the doctors’ particular choice of words merely reflects their professional—if clumsily phrased—determination that John McCain, within the parameters of well-adjusted personality functioning, possesses some facets of histrionic personality—most likely his distinctively outgoing, extroverted personal style. This assessment reflects my own analysis of McCain’s personality although I would add that McCain appears to exhibit an undercurrent of hostility and anger. This may be most recently evidenced by his reaction-formation defensive responses when he smiles menacingly at the camera after making a sarcastic comparison between himself and his Democratic opponent Barack Obama.

Within days of his release and return to America, McCain wrote the following account of his captivity, which was published in U.S. News and World Report - May 14, 1973:
"I think it was on the fourth day [after being shot down] that two guards came in, instead of one. One of them pulled back the blanket to show the other guard my injury. I looked at my knee. It was about the size of a football . . . when I saw it, I said to the guard, 'O.K., get the officer' . . . an officer came in after a few minutes. It was the man that we came to know very well as 'The Bug.' He was a psychotic torturer, one of the worst fiends that we had to deal with. I said, 'O.K., I'll give you military information if you will take me to the hospital.'"

McCain now says it was only a coincidence that at the same time he was offering "military information" in exchange for special medical treatment, his captors discovered that his father was Adm. John S. McCain Jr., commander of all U.S. forces in Europe and soon-to-be commander of all U.S. forces in the Pacific, including Vietnam.

Upon learning about McCain's father, the communists, in an unprecedented move, rushed McCain to one of their military hospitals where he received treatment not available for other U.S. prisoners of war.

This informative news broadcast lends further evidence for the instability of John McCain:

McCain Vows To Replace Secret Service With His Own Bare Fists


According to the National Institute of Mental Health, Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) develops after a terrifying ordeal (such as 2 years in solitary confinement and 6 years of POW captivity) that involved physical harm or the threat of physical harm. The person who develops PTSD may have been the one who was harmed, the harm may have happened to a loved one, or the person may have witnessed a harmful event that happened to loved ones or strangers.

PTSD was first brought to public attention in relation to war veterans, but it can result from a variety of traumatic incidents, such as mugging, rape, torture, being kidnapped or held captive, child abuse, car accidents, train wrecks, plane crashes, bombings, or natural disasters such as floods or earthquakes.

People with PTSD may startle easily, become emotionally numb (especially in relation to people with whom they used to be close), lose interest in things they used to enjoy, have trouble feeling affectionate, be irritable, become more aggressive, or even become violent. They avoid situations that remind them of the original incident, and anniversaries of the incident are often very difficult. PTSD symptoms seem to be worse if the event that triggered them was deliberately initiated by another person, as in a mugging or a kidnapping. Most people with PTSD repeatedly relive the trauma in their thoughts during the day and in nightmares when they sleep. These are called flashbacks. Flashbacks may consist of images, sounds, smells, or feelings, and are often triggered by ordinary occurrences, such as a door slamming or a car backfiring on the street. A person having a flashback may lose touch with reality and believe that the traumatic incident is happening all over again.

Not every traumatized person develops full-blown or even minor PTSD. Symptoms usually begin within 3 months of the incident but occasionally emerge years afterward. They must last more than a month to be considered PTSD. The course of the illness varies. Some people recover within 6 months, while others have symptoms that last much longer. In some people, the condition becomes chronic.

John McCain likely met all the Criteria for PTSD. If he is cured of this illness (which actually has a rather high cure/remission rate when properly treated) why will he not release his psychological records? How is this off limits?


Although John McCain has not exhibited gross signs of violence or other indications that he may spontaneously become mentally imbalanced, it is the profound lack of supporting evidence for his treatment and successful remission of this illness that is most troublesome. In addition, McCain was eager to give up information to the enemy (i.e. compromise) when pressured. Further, it is likely that John McCain harbors deep resentment toward his captors and may embroil the USA in a even more pointless war against an enemy (the Communists) long since vanquished. Therefore, all voters are advised to vote for Libertarian 3rd party candidate, Bob Barr.


Tom said...

This is impressive, Steve. Much deeper than our discussion on this topic. I found it fascinating.

Dude said...

I'm torn between Barr and McCain. Cindy is bringing in the all-important MILFhunter vote. He's a RINO, she's a cougar, and you know I love animals.

E said...

I visited the National Museum of Naval Aviation in Pensacola on Saturday, a real treat. One of the exhibits included a cell like the one McCain occupied, selected writings by some of the prisoners, and a video interview with McCain. I came away much more impressed with him. His story is not being told. We need more Sir Saunders. Love him or hate him, and I'm neither, I'd like to know more about him.

If he becomes President, make sure the red button he carries around with him is a fake.

At least he's not likely to pick some pansy like McClellan as his spokesman. Maybe Clint Eastwood is looking for a role.

E said...

Main Entry: trol·lop
Pronunciation: \ˈträ-ləp\
Function: noun
Etymology: perhaps irregular from trull
Date: 1621
: a vulgar or disreputable woman; especially : one who engages in sex promiscuously or for money

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