Mike Gerson today revisits the oft-mentioned (but not deeply explored) issue of John McCain's infamous temper. He notes that "temperament is not irrelevant in a leader" and details one past instance in which McCain's temper may have provoked a "tantrum." (Three words: "agents of intolerance.')

All of which brought to mind "The Tudors" (season 1 of which Chris and I have been catching up on so, please, no season 2 spoilers in comments), which portrays both court life and international relations in 16th century England as influenced heavily by whoever happened to disrespect Henry VIII on any given day. Historically accurate? Doubtful. But I nonetheless find it disturbingly easy to imagine Senator McCain challenging some uppity Cabinet members to arm wrestle or goading Nicolas Sarkozy into going all Greco-Roman in the middle of a state dinner.

Or how about a friendly joust?

 --Michelle Cottle