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McCain’s Cross: Old Spin vs. New Spin
Posted by: MichaelW on Tuesday, August 19, 2008

As the rumor that McCain ripped of Alexander Solzhenitsyn with his cross-in-the-dirt story continues to fall apart, it turns out that Solzhenitsyn did not ever tell the story in the first place [HT: Instapundit].
But it turns out that this episode probably never happened to Solzhenitsyn at all, and according to a Solzhenitsyn biographer it appears nowhere in his published writing. Columbia University professor Michael Scammell, the author of Solzhenitsyn: A Biography, says the episode "never happened," and didn't appear in Solzhenitsyn's book, Gulag Archipelago, either.
So whose fault is it then that McCain is accused of plagiarism? Why, the right wing's of course:
This only solves a piece of the mystery, but it's a key piece. It doesn't necessarily rule out the possibility that McCain or his biographer, Mark Salter, picked up the tale that this happened to Solzhenitsyn elsewhere and embellished it for their own purposes.

But it takes one well-trafficked theory off the table: That McCain, a fan of Solzhenitsyn, picked it up straight from his works. More broadly, it also skewers once and for all the cherished right-wing falsehood that this happened to Solzhenitsyn at all.

Of course, it's still possible that McCain or Salter picked this up from the sort of right-wing circles that it first originated in. After all, this tale was bandied about by Chuck Colson and many other wingnuts for years; McCain or Salter could have picked it up from such circles, as the notes from Colson's 1983 book, Loving God, explain:
"The story about Alexander Solzhenitsen and the old man who made the sign of the cross was first told by Solzhenitsyn to a group of Christian leaders and later recounted by Billy Graham in his New Year's telecast, 1977. It has been retold subsequently, most publicly by Senator Jesse Helms (R-NC)."
Old Spin: McCain's a plagiarizer!

New Spin: McCain's a plagiarizer of right-wing lies!

And the political silly season shall recommence in 3,2,1 ...
 
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Previous Comments to this Post 

Comments
It kinds of makes me wonder who was plagiarizing whom.
 
Written By: Dave Schuler
URL: http://www.theglitteringeye.com
Wait? Doesn’t the retarded researcher at Daily KOS who said McCain plagiarized this story get a bit of scorn, at all? None?
 
Written By: Tipper
URL: http://
Wait? Doesn’t the retarded researcher at Daily KOS who said McCain plagiarized this story get a bit of scorn, at all? None?
Off course not. Remember that they are all like mk. Absolutely clueless
 
Written By: capt joe
URL: http://
And the political silly season shall recommence in
as soon as it takes mkultra to post here.
 
Written By: Joel C.
URL: http://
Doesn’t the retarded researcher at Daily KOS who said McCain plagiarized this story get a bit of scorn, at all? None?
No, none...

Truth is not important, the message is what’s important.
Why are you right wingers so obsessed with facts when they can be so easily ignored in favor of the correct narrative.

McCain is old, he makes things up, he’s not as cool as Obama, he’s Bush III, his military service doesn’t count and his experience is irrelevant to being President.

Why can’t wingers get that?
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Every day the Left in America does or says something so ridiculous, so idiotic, so stupid, that anyone with an IQ in double digits has to say, "Shucks...they can’t go any lower."

And then they do something like this and prove how wrong we are.

The Left is never adverse to acting like the idiots that they are, because they have no brains to tell them how idiotic that they are.
 
Written By: James Marsden
URL: http://
"McCain is old, he makes things up, he’s not as cool as Obama, he’s Bush III, his military service doesn’t count and his experience is irrelevant to being President."

And that is why I predicted in January that McCain will be the next President.

It is because Obama is the Emperor’s New Clothes, only with far less intelligence and nothing behind the screen.
 
Written By: James Marsden
URL: http://
Wait? Doesn’t the retarded researcher at Daily KOS who said McCain plagiarized this story get a bit of scorn, at all? None?
OK .. the retarded researcher at Daily KOS is retarded.

This only goes to prove the old adage ... hire the retarded [Kossacks], they’re fun to watch
 
Written By: Neo
URL: http://
McCain should just say it is seared in his memory.

I encourage the lefties to keep hammering McCain on his POW experience. I hope the ObaMessiah campaign follows suit.
 
Written By: the wolf
URL: http://
And the political silly season shall recommence in 3,2,1 ...
Counting down to when we travel back in time to watch the start? Neat!
 
Written By: Scott Jacobs
URL: http://
I didn’t want to have to say this, but I will, it simply HAS to be said,
John McCain is a big old lying meanie doodie-head who tells big old mean doodiehead lies.

I think that sums it up pretty well...Neener-Neener-Neener
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
The ironic part of all this is they’re starting to make McCain look GOOD to me...and I thought that could never happen.

This is insane.
 
Written By: looker
URL: http://
Of course, it’s still possible that McCain or Salter picked this up from the sort of right-wing circles that it first originated in. After all, this tale was bandied about by Chuck Colson and many other wingnuts for years; McCain or Salter could have picked it up from such circles, as the notes from Colson’s 1983 book, Loving God, explain:
A fellow POW now says that McCain told him the story in, IIRC, 1971.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
I’m beginning to believe that any time a hard core Lefty wanders into a space occupied by any non-Lefties it automatically lowers the average IQ in the space by several points. This would include any given short bus.
 
Written By: jorgxmckie
URL: http://
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Written By: 3
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Written By: 3
URL: http://zjzsnsbmisfp.com/
More broadly, it also skewers once and for all the cherished right-wing falsehood that this happened to Solzhenitsyn at all.

Damn! Without a story about drawing a cross in the dirt, how can we convince people that Solzhenitsyn’s time in the gulag or McCain’s time in Hanoi measure up?

I mean, these guys’ life stories have to compare to real human dramas like Clinton’s time in Oxford or Obama’s work as a community organizer.
 
Written By: Ben
URL: http://www.qando.net/details.aspx?entry=7695

 
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