Posts Tagged ‘palin’
Tonight on Countdown, Rachel Madow put it best: They lie. Who “they” you ask? Republicans present at the Republican Convention, of course!
Barack Obama, according to Palin, never wrote a law, wants to raise your taxes, and has less experience than her. Obama, of course, has written laws, has promised to cut taxes on the middle class and raise them on the top 1% of the wealthiest people in the country, and has more practical experience than Palin.
Palin, according to pundits and even herself, fought corporate lobbyists, sold an airplane on Ebay, and said “no thanks” to the infamous bridge to nowhere.
Romney, in his speech, told Al Gore he needed to start saving the environment by grounding his private jet. One problem, Gore doesn’t own and has never owned a private jet. Ooops.
McCain, who decided that arguing against change is a bad idea has attempted to co-opt Senator Obama’s message of change. McCain, with little fervor, proclaimed he was the candidate of change and that he and Governor Palin represent the true chance at change in Washington since they are both Mavericks.
Lies, lies, lies.
It never ceases to amaze me that the attendees at the Republican convention can lie so easily. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised – they’ve had a lot of practice over the years.
For all those media analysts who think Joe Biden or Barack Obama should be ‘careful’ when discussing or debating Sarah Palin, I think that is clearly behind us now. Tonight, Sarah Palin put the gloves on and came out swinging. Her criticism of Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and the Democratic party was harsh and absolute. I think it interesting that Palin – after attacking the Democratic ticket – extended the olive branch in seemingly unlikely fashion:
No one expects us to agree on everything.
But we are expected to govern with integrity, good will, clear convictions, and … a servant’s heart.
I pledge to all Americans that I will carry myself in this spirit as vice president of the United States.
These statements, given at the end of her speech seemed almost to reach across the aisle. However, after her prolonged attack on Obama, the Democratic ticket, and Democrats as a whole, it seems insincere at best.
Palin, it seems, is really good at following the party line and Republican-scripted attack used throughout the convention. For instance, Palin made sure to mention McCain’s POW experience and sacrafice prominently:
A fellow prisoner of war, a man named Tom Moe of Lancaster, Ohio, recalls looking through a pin-hole in his cell door as Lieutenant Commander John McCain was led down the hallway, by the guards, day after day.
As the story is told, “When McCain shuffled back from torturous interrogations, he would turn toward Moe’s door and flash a grin and thumbs up” – as if to say, “We’re going to pull through this.” My fellow Americans, that is the kind of man America needs to see us through these next four years.
Once again this transparent and obvious attempt to divert attention from the great issues of our time – which the Republican Party is great at – is revolting in the extreme. In particular, the convention focus on John McCain’s POW experience is – again – manipulative and sickening.
But Palin was not through beating us over the head with this issue. In case there was any doubt that she was sincere instead of politically shrewd and manipulative, Palin added:
There is only one man in this election who has ever really fought for you … in places where winning means survival and defeat means death … and that man is John McCain. In our day, politicians have readily shared much lesser tales of adversity than the nightmare world in which this man, and others equally brave, served and suffered for their country.
It’s a long way from the fear and pain and squalor of a six-by-four cell in Hanoi to the Oval Office.
I guess we have our answer: Politically shrewd and manipulative. Sadly, it is blatantly obvious that the single minded focus of the Republican Party in this election is to win by any means – even if that means manipulating McCain’s military service, distorting the facts, or frightening the voting public with talk of war and terrorism.
In fact, Palin and all the speakers tonight make it very clear that the politics of fear and division is their preferred method of campaigning, relating to the American people, and defeating their opponents. Palin and her colleagues attempt to instill this fear and division by mentioning 9/11 again and again, referencing McCain’s POW status and torture over and over again, and talking about the continued dangerous threat by terrorists – that could attack on our soil again.
But, in her attempts to convey this message to the American public, Palin faultered.
Palin is – to put it bluntly – factually challenged. But she was not alone. Romney, Giuliani, Thompson, and President Bush all seem to manufacture the truth – a Republican truth – not, of course, the actual truth.
But don’t take my word for it. The bipartisan group – FactCheck.org holds both parties accountable for their misstatements. Last night, they worked overtime to keep up with the misrepresentations and distortions of the Republican speakers.
My prediction is that Sarah Palin will keep FactCheck.org very very busy, indeed.
It just doesn’t work. When Lieberman (and a whole boatload of other republicans) praise Palin’s experience while criticizing Obama’s experience, it rings hollow. What is especially interesting is that many of the arguments against Obama could also be used against McCain. McCain, for instance, while having many years of experience, has no executive branch experience – like a Governor does. But this does not stop Republicans from pointing this out about Obama vs. Palin.
To be successful, the Republican party normally focuses on the issues they can easily manipulate – that is what helped them in 2000 and 2004. When they stumble like this, and criticize one candidate for experience while their own VP candidate has little experience, it shows just how disorganized and confused this party is now.
On top of all this, they have Lieberman, a Democrat, attend the Republican convention. Lieberman, in the end, may well be remembered as poster boy for GOP confusion and disorganization.
The Republican Party has seemingly decided to kick some of the more decisive issues into high gear – specifically abortion – in an effort to return to the divisive policies of the 2000 and 2004 elections. Much like those election years, Republicans are trying to duck and cover when important issues are raised. In this election cycle the issues Republicans are trying to bury include: energy, the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and the economy.
The question is, will Americans fall for the same divisive policies all over again?
Obama and the Democrats will have to fight hard to stop the Karl Rove tactics. But unlike the 2000 and 2004 elections, Americans are very angry with the Republican party and Bush/Cheney specifically. This will help Democrats greatly in the end.
My advice to Obama? Fight hard to dispel Republican propaganda, both about the issues and about the candidates themselves. There are too many important issues that hang in the balance: the fiscal well being of our country, health care, and energy independence are just a few.
In discussing the future, President John F. Kennedy once said:
We have come too far, we have gained too much, to disdain the future now.
In this election year, one could easily say we have fallen behind, we have lost too much, to vote for John McCain. Another 4 years of Bush policies with a McCain/Palin team, is just too costly for our country and the world.
There’s a lot of buzz about Governor Palin as a reformer, and yes, even a maverick. Incredibly, it took all of one day for convervative pundits to start calling her a maverick and reformer. But does the Sarah Palin of reform lore match the Sarah Palin Alaskans know?
Sarah Palin the reformer fought hard against earmarks, rebuked Senator Stevens and the bridge to nowhere, and told congress to shape up.
The Sarah Palin Alaskans know is a little different.
According to the non-partisan group Taxpayers for Common Sense, Palin, as mayor, hired Senator Ted Stevens former chief of staff as a lobbyist for Wasilla. Palin, and Wasilla, benefited greatly from this relationship. Senator Stevens, who at the time headed the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee, was in a position to work closely with his former chief of staff and funnel earmark money to Alaska and, specifically, Wasilla in the tune of $27 Million dollars. Palin’s investment for these earmarks? A paltry 140,000 over 4 years. For a town of less than 10,000 people, Wasilla Alaska favored better than Des Moines Iowa (population 200,000).
Despite all this and Senator Stevens indictment on corruption charges, Palin and her supporters say she is a maverick and reformer.
Palin herself, contrary to her own public record of benefiting from earmarks and publicly supporting the infamous bridge to nowhere, stated the following after McCain selected her as his running mate:
And I’ve championed reform to end the abuses of earmark spending by Congress. In fact, I told Congress thanks, but no thanks, on that “bridge to nowhere.” If our state wanted a bridge, I said, we’d build it ourselves.
It seems that Governor Palin has learned a few things from the Bush Administration: if you distort the facts enough, maybe people will believe you.
There is personal irony in McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin. I had, back in June of this year, posted a test article to a news blog I was designing that listed a ‘faux’ article entitled, “Who is Sarah Palin?” which purported to supply readers with more information on McCain’s VP choice. At the time, her serious consideration for a job as VP was about as realistic as a Nader Presidency. But I was looking for fodder to fill up my test news site and this was the best fodder I could find. After all, John McCain would never choose a candidate with zero real political experience. Nor would he choose a vapid and vacuous candidate merely to play a gender game with disenfranchised Clinton primary voters.
At least that’s what I thought at the time. Three months later, however, that is exactly what John McCain has done. So, let’s take a serious look at Governor Palin’s political career:
- Two terms on the Wasilla City Council (1992-1996)
- Mayor, Wasilla AK – Population 9000 (1996 – 2002)
- Chairwoman, Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (2002)
- Governor, Alaska, (2006 to Present – less than 2 years)
So, with that outline, one can deduce that Palin has little to qualify her as a choice for Vice President of the United States.
What is even more interesting is that McCain and the Republican party have shot themselves in the foot with this selection. The experience issue is now off the table – at least for the Republicans. Democrats, I’m sure, will crucify McCain’s selection – as well they should. Not because of Palin’s gender, however. Instead, they will crucify it as a choice of someone completely unqualified for the role. After all, Palin is, in direct comparison, even more like Bush than McCain is – another sore point for disillusioned Reagan Republicans.
Glaring similarities include:
- She is rabidly right-wing
- She is pro-life
- She strongly supports Gas and Oil interests over the environment
- She uses her personal power as Governor to help her husband (British Petroleum employee)
- Ignoring ethics and law, she has helped her sister with her divorce against an Alaskan State Trooper (under investigation by the legislature)
All qualifications that seem to better qualify her for a post in the Bush Administration.