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  • We interrupt this “coverage” of the 2008 Democratic National Convention to report that John “Walnuts” McCain, when asked by Jay Leno this evening how many houses he owns, responded in a serious tone, “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell; I didn’t have a house.” It is unknown whether the studio audience laughed in response.

About the author

Jim Newell is Wonkette's beloved Capitol Hill Typing Demon. He joined in 2007, left for some other dumb job in 2010, and proudly returned in 2012 as our "Senior Editor at Large." He lives in Washington and also writes for things such as The Guardian, the Manchester paper of liberals.

View all articles by Jim Newell


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  • itgetter

    Why would Jay Leno attack John McCain’s lovely wife?

  • Twinkle Twinkle Lil Star


  • AngryBlakGuy

    …is there a single question on earth that cannot be answered with “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell”? I really wish I knew this in college, it would have saved me a lot of time on tests!

  • grendel

    Why does Jay Leno hate freedom?

  • MargeSimpsonsBlackFriend

    I’m starting to wish he would go back there.

  • AngryBlakGuy

    …keep it up WALNUTS!, you are about to become the punchline of every comedian in America!

  • mattbolt

    Are you fucking kidding me? I mean, I wasn’t watching because I was worried the vortex of unappealing created by WALNUTZ & THA CHIN would damage my TV, but, I need to see this on Youtube like right now.

  • naveed


  • Cicada

    [re=69519]MargeSimpsonsBlackFriend[/re]: +1

  • grendel

    Someone needs to kick Ben Stein’s ass

  • Canmon (the Inadequate)

    [re=69517]AngryBlakGuy[/re]: He’s been using that chestnut since he first came back. His first wife excused his infidelities because he had been a POW and he figured he could use it to get out of anything.

  • villageatrois

    IMPORTANT: Proposed new meme: Mc 5.5

  • dilhavarti

    Five and dime on the bricks and you get a hall pass fo’ EVAH!!! .. if yer white and yer pop’s an admiral, n stuff. Nice one, prunes.

  • Slutty_Chola_Cobbler

    Beleive it or not, but there will be hundreds of thousands in their trailers or their mansions cheering on that ridiculous shit!!

    When will this fucking senile man stop using the POW CARD? So all someone has to do is fuck up their airplane, get caught, survive the day and boom – you are the most qualified to be President? Frig, I am going to Colombia; get banged by a few FARC dudes, and come hope limping , then run for President! I’ll bring back the bastard as proof of my pro-life stance, of ocurse..

  • Gopherit v2.0

    Yup. He learned to be a property-less in Vietnam, and has settled into it well under Cindy. He’s a fucking COMMIE!

  • Gopherit v2.0

    [re=69527]Canmon (the Inadequate)[/re]: You mean, like Hills?

  • AngryBlakGuy

    …GAAAAAAAAAWD, I cant wait for the first debate! It is going to be hilarious hearing WALNUTS! answer a question on the sub-prime market with “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell”. That being said it may be a bad idea to use POW references as a key word for the debate drinking game.

  • Slutty_Chola_Cobbler

    [re=69528]villageatrois[/re]: Walnuts Y5K

  • MargeSimpsonsBlackFriend

    [re=69524]Cicada[/re]: I’m willing to give him ALL of my Hilton points.

  • villageatrois

    Oh yeah, and the Count Basie Band had it too:

    Mister Five by Five
    Got fifty chins and a line of jive
    He’s a mellow old cat, a real hep fat
    He be Mister Five by Five

    Oughta hear Molly Mason sing it with Blue Rose.

  • dilhavarti

    [re=69528]villageatrois[/re]: There should be a Pho reference, no? Like Pho-King Wee todd did

  • KittyKatMan

    How long did it take for Judy G’s 911 to become a joke?
    Believe me, McSkids is starting too early. It will be a joke and a useless tool way before Nov.
    -love chuck todd

  • Aurelio

    It is the all purpose answer.

    “Why did you call your wife a cunt?” — “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why do you have walnut-cheeks?” — “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why did you conspire with Ed Keating to cheat the taxpayers out of $300 billion?” — “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why didn’t you make Admiral?”– “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why did you dump your first wife when she was fucked up from an accident?” — “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why did you graduate 895th in your class at Annapolis?” — “I was going to spend 5½ years in a prison cell.”

  • obfuscator

    If only Johnny Carson were still around. It’d be a great Carnac moment.

    (Carnac holds the sealed envelope up to his turban)

    CARNAC: Five and a half years.

    ED McMAHON: Five and a half years.

    (Carnac rips the envelope open and removes the card)

    CARNAC (reading): The interval between Cindy McCain’s orgasms!


  • The 3-Legged Man

    It’s official: McCain just harshed my buzz. Big time.

  • Keram2

    Thank you John McCain. Thank you for turning the one thing I genuinely respected you for into a trivial political crutch, you fucking cunt.

  • J

    Gary Glitter spent several years in a Vietnamese prison and I’m not fucking voting for him either.

  • dilhavarti

    [re=69543]Aurelio[/re]: Or, alternately, pepper with “I am forgiven/am becoming more Christ-like”

  • mattbolt

    Waaaalnuuuuts roooasting in an open cellll,
    Chaaarliiie binding up your toooes…
    Sandy crosses being drawn by a guard,
    And sucky-sucky long time from hoooooes…

  • naveed

    [re=69517]AngryBlakGuy[/re]: He’s a rotten Manchurian liar, he was captive for 5 years, 4.5 months ONLY.

    Curiously, he was with our Vietnamese friends for exactly 1967 days, the same as the year in which he gloriously crashed his 5th jet.


    From and including: Thursday, October 26, 1967
    To and including: Wednesday, March 14, 1973

    It is 1967 days from the start date to the end date, end date included

    Or 5 years, 4 months, 17 days including the end date
    Alternative time units
    1967 days can be converted to one of these units:

    * 169,948,800 seconds
    * 2,832,480 minutes
    * 47,208 hours
    * 281 weeks

  • villageatrois

    It was CHARLES Keating. “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.” And what kind of mortgage did you pay on it? What was the interest rate? Have you made restitution to the people of Viet Nam, or given them points on your subsequent proceeds? Why did you live better than the people of the Inland Empire, and for free?

  • AngryBlakGuy

    …ironically John McCain ejaculates at thought of referencing his 5½ years as POW, but fights tooth and nail to keep his military record SEALED!

  • MargeSimpsonsBlackFriend

    You know, Larry King has really been getting up in people’s faces lately and it’s fucking great.

  • kellygrrrl

    Oh, for crying outloud! That well is dry, gramps! give it up!

  • obfuscator

    McLaughlin Group Question #5:

    WOULD the Hanoi Hilton count as John McCain’s 8th home??? Patty-Patty-Pat Buchanan!

  • dilhavarti

    [re=69549]J[/re]: Gary Glitter’s gay?

  • Cicada

    Imagine if John Kerry had repeatedly referenced the shrapnel in his thigh. The Republicans would have had a field day! Hell, I would have had a field day.

  • Manchowder

    “Why can’t you vote?” – “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why can’t you own a gun?” – “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why can’t you drop your kids off at school?” – “I spent 5½ years in a prison cell.”

    “Why don’t you enjoy sex with women anymore?” – Some of my captors were homosexual.

  • dilhavarti

    [re=69554]AngryBlakGuy[/re]: but secs in the “debriefing”

  • the schmada

    I can’t wait for the Vietcong POW Guards for McCain to come out,”We liked him so much we kept him for five and a half years, Were we ever homosexual towards him? Yes,repeatedly.”

  • obfuscator

    What a fucking whinebox. I was enrolled at a shitty community college for 5.5 years. You don’t hear me bitching about it.

  • obfuscator

    [re=69570]the schmada[/re]: “Friends, my captors loved me long time.”

  • villageatrois

    Obfuscator 5.5!

    It’s impressive, but not Blutarsky’s (John Belushi’s) record: “Ten good years of college down the drain.”

  • AngryBlakGuy

    …geeeeeeeeez, can they please stop mentioning Hillary Clinton?!

  • donotronix

    [re=69571]obfuscator[/re]: but were your instructors HOMOSEXUALS?

  • SayItWithWookies

    Not only did he say that (yes, I felt compelled to check it out) but in the same answer he also said that Cindy’s father barely graduated high school and served on a bomber in WWII and that he was grateful for his service.
    And he said that this campaign wouldn’t be so negative if only Obama had agreed to meet in fifteen town hall debates. Weirdly, the implication he was serving up was that if only Barack Obama really knew him, John McCain, then Obama wouldn’t have started going negative (I assume by attacking his wife, etc.)
    It was a beautiful example of how the man of integrity will toss it aside to wade neck-deep in doubletalk in order to show America how principled he is and therefore not nearly as out-of-touch as that effete snob Barack, at whose miniscule $1.6 million mansion one couldn’t even have a proper cookout for all one’s press corps.

  • itgetter

    [re=69563]Cicada[/re]: Which begs the question, what could be the dems dickish equivalent of wearing purple band-aids to mock John Kerry? And why aren’t we mean enough to do it?

  • obfuscator

    [re=69580]itgetter[/re]: THOSE PLASTIC YELLOW HILLBILLY TEETH! Or tucking your right arm into your shirtsleeve so it looks gimpish. Or staring at a Commodore 64 with a look bewilderment and fearful awe.

  • Guppy06

    I’m sure there are people in Gitmo that can top that.

  • gurukalehuru

    What did Jay say? I’m guessing that Republican kiss ass gave him a total free pass.

  • Jingo

    McCain: “… and if I don’t win this election, Cindy will divorce my tired old ass and I’ll be back to not having a house.”

    Actually, McCain is telling the truth. Since Cindy is the provider in the family, McCain isn’t sure if he has ownership in any of those houses. I wonder how many times he has asked, “Cindy darling, can I borrow the keys to the La Jolla condo?” and whether it was followed by foot-stamping and mumbling about 5 1/2 years or something.

  • Guppy06

    Actually, is McCain’s running mate going to be Salim Hamdan?

  • Cicada

    [re=69580]itgetter[/re]: Perhaps they could hand out little plastic punji sticks at the convention?

  • obfuscator

    [re=69578]SayItWithWookies[/re]: “Friends, I am here to tell you how out-of-touch and elitist my opponent is… excuse me, friends… I seem to have a pebble in my $520 Italian loafers… ” (bends down and farts)

  • mattbolt

    What’s the difference between John McCain and Gary Glitter?

    One had a 5½ year stay in Vietnam, the other had a 5½ year old stay with him in Vietnam!

  • EliteAfroChick

    icky icky poo

  • sezme

    [re=69587]gurukalehuru[/re]: I’m guessing that Jay let it go. Too bad it wasn’t me because if I was Jay, I’d have said, “Whoa there gramps, I’m talking about now. In 2008. How many houses do you own now?” I’d have shut that shit down.

  • Aurelio

    [re=69517]AngryBlakGuy[/re]: Angryblakguy, I don’t think this answer would have helped you out on tests in college. For that, I think you would have had to be John McCain.

  • Larry McAwful

    I spent 5½ years in college. I’m going to have to start using that as my catch-all excuse.

  • SayItWithWookies

    [re=69594]obfuscator[/re]: I didn’t even look for the famous Ferragamos — damn. I wonder if their similar taste in shoes points towards Condi as veep. Hmmmm.

  • TexasCowGirl

    Was he kiding? Did the audience laugh? When is he going to be called on this shit? Has anyone else ever benefited so much from being a bad pilot? And of course they beat his ass while he was in prison, he was dropping naplam and agent orange on their children for God’s sake. And it’s not like he was so fucked up he couldn’t come home and be a habitual cheater. He is making a joke of himself and he doesn’t know it.

  • Outstando

    This is how McCrazy won all his houses:

    And this is how he thinks we should solve all our problems.

  • Aurelio

    [re=69636]TexasCowGirl[/re]: Right, TCG. Walnuts is a joke. Nevertheless, he is doing very well in the polls against Obama. This shows the dimensions of American racism. A lot of people would rather vote for WALNUTS, asshole that he is, than vote for the black guy.

  • mattbolt

    [re=69636]TexasCowGirl[/re]: “Has anyone else ever benefited so much from being a bad pilot?”

    Mohammed Atta? 1 flight, 0 succesful landings. Net result: Neverending global chaos.

  • trai_dep

    Well, you spend five-and-a-half years getting buggered like the dirty little proletariat you know you are by strapping, shirtless Viet Cong guards and see how well you can recite your address(es).

  • villageatrois

    [re=69688]trai_dep[/re]: He can recite his 1967 address and he does it all the time: “Hanoi Hilton”. He just doesn’t know where he lives now, nor even how many places he lives at now. It’s the fault of the Secret Service. They take him everywhere and they don’t tell him anything. This makes him just like us, and qualifies him to rule the world.

  • regisgoat

    These two guys walk into a bar, and one of them spent 5 1/2 years in a prison cell.
    And now for your Merle Haggard moment:

    First thing I remember sayin
    On my straight talk campain-in’
    Was that I’d been in the Hilton
    eatin’ fish heads with my rice
    When the people asked for issues
    I’d get’m reaching for the tissues
    By talking of my ordeal
    a century ago.

    I spent 5 1/2 years in prison
    after crackin’ up my jet
    No one could make me Prez
    but Charlie tried
    (Charlie tried)
    Charlie’s vengeance might just pay off
    with the voters undecided
    No one could make me Prez
    but Charlie tried

  • PolicyWhore

    A noun, a verb and 5 1/2 years.

  • lovethebomb

    A lot of Guantanamo prisoners are approaching their 5.5 yr mark. By McWalnuts logic, they are the most qualified for the office of president. Being tortured at the hands of sadists for 5 yrs is something our own government does for Arab looking types, so get over yourself Cheeks.

  • slavojzizek

    Five and a half years at the Hanoi Hilton. You know who else spends a lot of time at Hiltons in foreign lands? Paris. Who he is exactly like.

  • Strongy O

    Look, I’m all for rehabilition as much as the next liberal, but should a Presidential candidate really be boasting about his time in ‘The Big House’?

  • ManchuCandidate

    Torching the USS Forrestal would do that you know.

  • Strictly for the Tardcore

    Jesus Christ, I’m off of Wonkette for a couple of days, and this is what I miss? Dammit.

    The best thing about this bout of verbal diarrhea is that now I can spout “FIVE AND A HALF YEARS, JAY!!!” and make it a riff on something WALNUTS! said instead of Sean Hannity.

  • WonksRunAmuck

    you know…I was asking directions at a gas station once and all the guy would say was “twoandahalf miles”

    Perhaps this is the right answer. We’re just not asking the right question…

  • qwerty42

    Just remember: “9/11 changed everything”

  • Canmon (the Inadequate)

    [re=69533]Gopherit v2.0[/re]: Yes. I don’t think HIllary should have defended her husband either. She should have let him take the full brunt of his actions.

  • grinsalot


    That’s hot!

  • snig

    So is there someone who graduated higher in his class who was a POW for six years? Or is there someone who was in for five an half years and hasn’t been embroiled in a S&L scandal?

  • Schadenfried

    “How about the Vietnam Vets who don’t have homes because they DIED serving their country? What about the Vietnam Vets who are HOMELESS?”

    Oh, nevermind, that’s just what I’d say to McCain in the debate in my head.

  • Schadenfried

    [re=69571]obfuscator[/re]: I know, and Larry Elder calls us Victimcrats.

  • Deepthroat

    obfuscator is on FIRE today!

  • VanTwee

    McCain has literally been using this line since before I was born.

  • Outstando

    His brain hurts like a warehouse, it has no room to spare for facts like how many houses he owns.

    McCain is clearly going for all the fat-skinny people, all the tall-short people, all the nobody people, all the somebody people vote. He never thought he’d need so many people.

    Five (and a half) years.

  • Miller

    I didn’t think you could degenerate into self parody in a week or two, but McCain’s proving me wrong with the POW defense for everything from ABBA to his house memory. Giuliani better watch out, there’s a new kid on the “overplayed his hand” block.

  • dearcatastrophecarlos

    Cinco años y medio.

  • Voyou Charmant

    A noun, a verb and 5 years as a POW.

  • lovethebomb

    my friends, my friends. I used to pour flaming gasoline on little children from thousands of feet in the air and then crashed my plane. That’s not change we can believe in. I got buggered by svelty Viet Cong gaurds and decided to stay instead of early release. That is change we can believe in.

  • Mo MoDo

    [re=69789]snig[/re]: Snark-free link: This guy was a classmate of McCrash and a POW at the Hanoi Hilton for EIGHT YEARS. And he is no fan of McCain. So YTF is he not keynote speaker at the convention?

  • Prescottstyle

    The fact is McCain was in a war (Vietnam) that nobody home approved of and was shot down out of the sky and bounced off the ground and lived to tell the story. That’s the kind of courage and determination our next Pres needs. John McCain from Sedona is a Hero compared to the Democratic hopeful canidate. I really doubt that Obama could even take a bungee jump without wetting himself.