Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Hubris thy name is McCain

During my time on the net on Sunday and Monday, I ran across an NBC interview with McCain. In that interview he talked about the hurricane and the convention. Then his VP choice, Governor Palin, was questioned.

"Is this the best person to have just a heartbeat away from the presidency?"

"Absolutely. Governor Palin has held elected office longer than Senator Obama and has the experience necessary to be president."

Really? Well, I had to check that out for myself.

Governor Palin's Experience:
Wasilla City Council 1992 - 1996
Mayor Wasilla 1996 - 2002
Governor Alaska 2006 to present

She has held elected office for 12 years. In between those offices she served on several appointed commissions. Before that she was a sportscaster. Now, I am sure that Wasilla is a lovely city, but I am not sure that 10 years in a city of 7000 people is the experience needed to be president.

Senator Obama's Experience:
Illinois State Senate: 1997 - 2004
U.S. Senate: 2005 to present

That is 10 years of elected office experience. Before that Obama was a community organizer helping people who had been laid off due to factory closings. He was also a civil rights lawyer and taught constitutional law.

Hmm. If I were in HR at the White House, I know that I would probably prefer one resume to another. I cannot believe that McCain actually wants me to believe that she has more and better experience than Obama. Therefore, I have decided experience is a crappy argument and I am done with it. As I pointed out last week, Lincoln did not have that much experience either.

In the spirit of being fair, I took a look at the RNC convention speeches this morning. Fred Thompson reminded me of that old ad, "I may not be president but I play one on TV." For me, his speech signaled a return of the old Republican argument that only Republicans can protect the country and if you are not with them then you are against them, i.e. unpatriotic. Why does dissent make me unpatriotic? Didn't Jefferson say that dissent is the best form of patriotism? Just because I am a Democrat does not mean I do not love my country.

Then I read this in the Internet and I got pissed off:

Palin Reignites Culture Wars

Dude, I saw this coming. One reason that Obama has not brought up "culture" issues is because he knows that the Dems don't usually fare well with them. This election should not be about abortion, creationism, capital punishment or the gun lobby. However, by choosing Palin, McCain made sure that his conservative base got all rilled up. McCain is letting the conservative base and RNC do his dirty work while standing by and pretending to be the independent above it all.

What pisses me off the most is how the Dems played into the Repub hands. Instead of letting it alone and watching as McCain and Palin fall on their swords, the Dems got smug and tried to start scaring people. Only Karl Rove is good at being Karl Rove. I feel an Eminem song coming on, "Would the real Karl Rove please stand up? Please stand up?" Sorry, where was I? Putting a Conservative on the defensive is not good. They get wound up like Bill O'Riley and you cannot talk to people like that.

In 2004 I went to a symposium at the University of Oldenburg where a student asked me how in the world Americans could have reelected George Bush. I responded by pointing out that the Repubs like to talk about what I call "red herring issues." Take Ohio for example. Sure a lot of Ohio's sons and daughters were dying in Iraq, thousands had lost their jobs, federal support for important welfare programs had been cut, and the current administration was partly responsible for those things. However, by God almighty, gay couples should not be allowed to get married. By making the election about gay marriage instead of Iraq or the economy, the Repubs won a few key states. This reminds me of a song from the musical Chicago.

Give 'em the old razzle dazzle
Razzle dazzle 'em
Give 'em act with lots of flash in it
And the reaction will be passionate
Give 'em the old hocus pocus
Bread and feather 'em
How can they see with sequins in their eyes?
What if your hinges all are rusting?
What if, in fact, you're just disgusting?
Razzle dazzle 'em
And they'll never catch wise.

Certainly the Obama's over the top stage was a bit much when excepting the nomination. However, the Repubs distract the American public about what is important and they get away with it all the time.

I agree with Obama that Palin's 17 year old daughter is not a political issue. Bristol Palin got pregnant at 17 and is marrying her 18 year old boyfriend. I read this morning that Bristol's boyfriend is flying to the convention. Is the RNC trying to tell me that this is all okay? My mother spent my entire teenage years telling me not to get pregnant. The whole thing does prove one point that I have made for years. Teaching abstinence only in schools does not result in a decrease in teen sex in results in a decrease in SAFER sex among teenagers. Man, if it really is okay, then I should have had more sex in high school.


Snooker said...

They teach abstinence and nobody listens... they don't teach contraception and thus it isn't used... they preach against abortion and babies are born to babies. When will they learn? 44 year old grandma will just have the nursemaid raise that baby too I'm sure.

A grandma who is shaping up to be one incredibly divisive figure. She's holier-than-thou, wants regulations for bedrooms but not for corporations' oil, will abuse all powers for personal and political gain, just generally a rightwing conservative freak. Very much like Baby Bush... with less education.

As for the Republican Veep wanna-be, I'm more concerned about her abuse of power and bridge to nowhere issues.

kim said...

i couldn't agree more! that pic is the most ridiculous thing i've heard and seen since mccain said putin was the president of germany...

kim said...

i meant to say "that pick" referring to palin, btw ;)

Carol said...

Brilliant post, Claire! I wish it could be published on or somewhere equally as visible!