The rock stars of governmental power are the modern Praetorian Guard. The Navy Seals, The Marines, the Special Forces. Centers of power that wish to be answerable to themselves alone, and resent any meddling from mere civilian voices. Like Rome we seem to prefer the defense of the realm by hired mercenaries and shock troops, so our children can stay home and make money. This is empire on the cheap because imperial costs can be pushed out over the horizon so far as our creditors will tolerate it.
In this age of Rove we have accepted corrupt language as normal. Peace is war. Economics is now a Vegas crapshoot. Rape and run exploitation has had a smiley face of PR green painted over its fangs. Public servants are all now "Bureaucrats" (said with venom).
The Old Fool McCain is an untrustworthy vessel to carry the Rovian poison to the next generation, but the reflexes of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy could well provide a third Bush term. After six months of raging hate against the Democratic Party's nominee the electorate may well be willing to vote McCain just ot get them top shut up. The ray of hope I see is that John McCain is one profoundly unlucky guy. It was his fighter/bomber that dropped the ordinance on the USS Enterprise's flight deck, causing the fire that killed over a hundred sailors. On one of his first missions over Viet Nam he was shot down and spent six years attending a torture workshop. When he came home he lived large and lost his family. As a Congressman and Senator he was the front man for the Keating Five during the S&L scandal. (That scandal would make a good blog post in itself, so watch this space) Then in 2000 the VRWC came down on him to ensure their boy George W's victory. We've had a couple of dark horse presidents in the last fifty years, and perhaps a third wouldn't be out of the question.