Some unintentional candor, revealing the speaker's belief in an irreconcilable, binary opposition:"I want to thank my fellow Republicans as we take off our Republican hats and put on our American hats and say, America we are with you and we are going to care about these people in their time of need."
-- Sen. John McCain, Republican presidential candidate, on plans to downscale the Republican National Convention as Hurricane Gustav approaches the Gulf Coast.
A variation of this also appears on a splash page at McCain's Web site:"We will act as Americans and not as Republicans because America needs us now."
Two different hats. One of them, McCain says, is appropriate for caring "about people in their time of need." The other, McCain says, must be removed in order to do what America needs.
Two separate hats. And, McCain insists, they can't be worn at the same time.
Actually, that explains a lot.