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Power and powerlessness: the McCain model

By Lisa Van Dusen      

The late U.S. Senator John McCain's life offers a reminder that there are exceptions to the usual power profile.

John McCain, who died on Aug. 25 at age 81, is pictured, front right, after being released as a prisoner of war in 1973. He spent more than five years in captivity in Vietnam, two of them in solitary confinement, miraculously emerging from that experience with more compassion than wrath, writes Lisa Van Dusen. U.S. National Archives photograph

Among the themes emerging from this improbable political moment, in which the world is being not so much led as misled by an extraordinarily destructive American president, is abuse of power.

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