Meghan McCain Goes Back to High School

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Like many high school rebels, Meghan McCain is prone to quoting the icons of like-so-don't-even-care-what-you-think teenage cool: Jack Kerouac, Bob Dylan, Kurt Cobain, and Hunter S. Thompson. The only difference is that Meghan McCain is 27-years- old. 

It appears that McCain has recently started on some sort of high school required reading list. Of late, the senator's daughter and MSNBC commentator has been tweeting quotes from On the Road and Nirvana songs. While many of us have gone through a phase where we felt brutally oppressed by The Man despite having a great deal of freedom and little to no responsibilities, this phase typically occurs when Mrs. Anderson is forcing us to write definitions after being late to Honors English five days in a row. But this is the state McCain is in. Like so many teens, McCain has long mistakenly believed that she is unique in being interested in sex, cuss words, music, and really deep thoughts about life. ("I was just told by a friend that my dating problems are 'because I have too much swagger for most men' but she was apparently," McCain tweeted at Toure on March 29, it seems in reference to Pam Grier.) But her love of adolescent literature is new. 

She recently told Playboy's David Hochman that Hunter S. Thompson is one of her all-time favorite writers, because  "I love the way he wrote with such disregard for authority and the status quo... But trust me, Hunter and I would have been fast friends." McCain's also begun tweeting quotes from the all-time greats of high school reading lists. For example:

  • "'I was halfway across America, at the dividing line between the East of my youth and the West of my future.' -Jack Kerouac," she wrote March 27. 
  • "'The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything.' -Jack Kerouac," she tweeted April 3.
  • "'Candor ends paranoia.' - Allen Ginsberg," she tweeted January 12.
  • "'Like all dreamers, I mistook disenchantment for truth.' - Jean-Paul Sartre," she wrote January 20.

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Then there are the music gods of misspent youth:

  • "'I'll let you be in my dreams if I can be in yours.' - Bob Dylan," she said February 6. 
  • "'I would rather be hated for who I am, than loved for who I am not.' - Kurt Cobain," she wrote March 16.
  • "At the airport looking like a Woody Guthrie song," she said March 6.

And then there's the classic F-U to convention: Retweeting something called "NietzscheQuotes" on Valentine's Day. ("Of all that is written, I love only what a person has written with his own blood. #Nietzsche [sic.]").

Of course, it goes without saying that McCain's misspent youth is not being spent doing whip-its in the parking lot behind Walmart, a more modern form of teen rebellion, or wallowing in poverty in a cramped apartment or on a smelly road trip, like some of the writers she fetishizes. As she has tweeted herself, her "home away from home" is not the road, but the airport:

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.