Gore Vidal and the Art of the Political Insult

Increasingly addled essayist and novelist Gore Vidal tells Deb Solomon of the NYT Magazine how he really feels about John McCain: he's a "disaster." Also: "Who started this rumor that he was a war hero? Where does that come from, aside from himself? About his suffering in the prison war camp?" Well, the dude definitely was a POW. But that's not the only insult he's lobbed at political figures. The man has a history of being as bad as a Fox News anchor!

His previous thoughts on McCain include, "He is extremely stupid and he's a slow study—you can't teach him anything."

He doesn't seem to be a big fan of Obama, either, mystifyingly referring to "the United States of America, as Mr. Obama likes to call it."

On George W. Bush? "Bush is a thug."

On George H.W. Bush:

"...yes, [George W.] is very dumb, but his father's dumber. Poppy. When I was at Exeter, Poppy was at Andover, and Poppy's son George W. also went to Andover, where he was a cheerleader. A very distinguished cheerleader.

What about Reagan? Vidal once called him "a triumph of the embalmer's art." He also used to refer to Reagan as "the acting president," which is pretty funny.

On one of the nation's founding fathers, John Adams? He "waddled into history."