Political Hypocrisy: Who\'da Thunk?

I'm off to see Wedding Crashers in a few minutes, and I'm not expecting much. But this op-ed caught my eye. Apparently, John McCain makes a cameo - the same John McCain who scolded the movie industry for producing the same sorts of movies he now appears in:

If John McCain were just another U.S. senator, you might say that it was quite a star turn, particularly for a Republican who is actually quite conservative on social issues. And since it's not just another senator, but John McCain, a man whose life story is of courage and service, maybe you'd say it's part of what makes him an appealing figure across generational lines. As he explained it, "It impressed my kids."

But McCain isn't just another senator. He is currently - according to the polls - the "front-runner" in the Republican race for the 2008 nomination, although Republicans are sharply divided as to whether that can hold in a process dominated by party regulars and Christian conservatives.

It was John McCain - the senator, not the character - who held hearings prior to the 2000 elections, as everyone is now pointing out, to take Hollywood to task for making R-rated movies and marketing them to teenagers. The result was a commitment by the industry to enforce more strictly the R restriction - with the unintended consequence, some would argue, that PG-13 movies got to be more sexual and more violent. This movie was conceived of as R-rated from the get-go, and McCain apparently is the only elected official to join the cast...

Will the right laugh off the senator's latest cameo as just that? Or will they ask what he was thinking when, having campaigned against R-rated films marketed to kids, he agreed to appear in one.

In the end, what may be at issue is not whether conservatives share McCain's sense of humor but whether they come to question his judgment.

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