James Taranto explores some of the differences between John Kerry and Howard Dean endorsed John McCain:
The description "blatant opportunist" really did fit Kerry in 2004. When he returned from Vietnam, he slandered his fellow veterans as vicious murderers and rapists. Decades later, when he thought it would be to his political advantage, he tried to hype himself as a hero, and then slandered the veterans who called attention to this inconsistency.
By contrast, so far as we know, McCain is uncomplicatedly a war hero, and being a war hero is certainly a point in his favor. Still, we hope he will not follow Kerry's lead and base his whole campaign on his service to the country 40 years ago. We suspect he knows better. And if John McCain opens his convention speech by saluting and saying "reporting for duty," we'll eat our hat.
The reminder of that moment is enough to make one shudder.