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McCain picks Sarah Palin as veep

August 29, 2008

I’m genuinely worried by McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin as Veep, and I’ll tell you why in a minute.  But most of the reactions to this choice seem more confident:

Sarah Palin’s story doesn’t seem too complicated.  She’s a former beauty queen (remember our current decider-in-chief is a former cheerleader).  She has a bachelor of arts degree in journalism.  She was mayor of a small town for a while, and has been governor of Alaska for two years.  She’s anti-choice, anti-gay, and a young-Earth Creationist.  And she isn’t difficult to look at, although one of my friends heard her speak and said listening to her is another matter; apparently her rhetorical skills rival those of McCain.

I’ve noticed this about the right wing – they’re really into identity politics.  If you are black, then any black man at all should have your vote.  How else explain the raving lunatic they ran against Barack Obama for Illinois Senator?  And now it appears that they think anyone with private plumbing similar to Palin’s will march right in and vote for her, disappointed Hillary supporters included.  It’s an insulting way to look at voters, and hopefully also an untrue one.

On the one hand, we have Obama.  This is a guy who started from poverty and wound up as first black president of the Harvard Law Review.  Unlike certain plutocrat politicians, he has lived in dangerous neighborhoods, and had to sweat (both metaphorically and literally) to pay the bills.  He married – and stayed married to – an equally tough and smart woman who is an inspiration to work hard and win the day.  Even the conservative magazine The Economist likes him, and calls him a ‘meritocrat’.  And Biden!  massive amounts of experience and one tough cookie.  By any measure, that’s a solid ticket.

On the other hand, we have McCain.  He’s 4th generation military royalty and a celebrity in his own right.  His years as a POW in Vietnam were until recently (that is, until he took to mentioning them to explain everything about himself) an asset.  He met the wealthy, beautiful, 17-years-younger woman to whom he is now married, while vacationing in Hawaii as his previous wife recovered from an auto accident.  His campaign has been one misstep after another.  For all his talk of foreign policy expertise, he makes very basic geography mistakes.  He has a tenuous grasp of economics and an explosive temper.  He has voted 95% of the time with an administration that has turned everything it touched to garbage.  And now he has chosen a clearly unqualified person for a running mate.  By any measure, a shaky ticket.

So why would I be worried about his choice of veep?  Shouldn’t I be rejoicing?  Probably not, for the reasons mentioned above.  And The New Republic is right – it is an ‘astonishingly arrogant’ pick.  It’s almost as if he knows the results of the election before it happens.  And before you start measuring me for a tinfoil hat, consider this: there are one hell of a lot of Diebold machines out there. 


Updates:

  • Palin is not exactly on the side of the angels on environmental, health, and energy issues.

  • Her first lie as VP pick.  Yep, Alaska – the rugged individualist state, as long as massive federal dollars keep flowing in.
  • And do I even need to mention she’s an AGW* denier? Not exactly a shock given her affection for the oil industry.  This link is full of interesting stuff, including “You’re an Alaskan, and energy costs are too high?  Here’s $1,200 to help, courtesy Sarah Palin.”
  • But at least she’ll ‘shake up the status quo’, right?  Not really so much.
  • McCain is offering an important salve to Battered Base Syndrome.
  • All the important stuff about her… may not matter:
    Does she have disadvantages, like lack of experience? Absolutely. Do those disadvantages outweigh the above? Not a chance. We have to face the facts: everyone who cares about issues and qualifications has already made up their minds one way or another. VP picks are about pulling in the rest, and Palin will do that in spades.

     

  • Could a college sophomore be responsible for her nomination?  Just in case anyone doubts the importance of web leverage.
  • Could Karl Rove, of all people, have the best explanation for why Palin is a good political choice at the expense of being bad for America?

*(Anthropogenic Global Warming)

Categories: Politics
  1. August 30, 2008 at 08:50 | #1

    I’ve been hearing enough disappointed Hillary supporters go into full-throated outraged roar now that I think McCain’s pick is going to backfire on him hugely with that bloc.  Not that there was ever any chance that they’d vote Republican anyway – there’s a tiny handful of them that might be that stupid and vindictive, but the majority of them are mature women and can suck it up.

    Besides.  It’s hard to hate Obama if you’re not a raving right-wing lunatic.

    Someone needs to do the country a favor, locate all of those Diebold machines in their storage areas, and put them out of our misery.  They’re the only real fear I have that this election could be stolen.  But at least they’ll be the last shred of hope if this country goes collectively psychotic and votes McLame in.

    “My fellow Americans aren’t really that blindingly stupid.  It was the machines!”

    Not that I’ll believe it if the margin’s large enough…

  2. August 30, 2008 at 09:32 | #2

    The Diebold machines scare me too. I wish I could say Obama is sure to win, but really I can only say we are close.

  3. james old guy
    August 30, 2008 at 12:27 | #3

    At least I can come here for the shallow end of the gene pool opinion.

  4. August 30, 2008 at 12:37 | #4

    So what’s your take on Palin, James?  Qualified?  A good pick for commander-in-chief?  Oddsmakers are saying if McCain is elected, there’s a 14% chance she’ll be president by the end of the first term.

    Don’t hold back, let us know what you think of her.

  5. james old guy
    August 30, 2008 at 13:22 | #5

    Web
    Personally I think she is more qualified than Obama. At least she has ran something other than her mouth. Here is a link to one of the many pages I have researched on her, since I didn’t have a clue on who she is. Of course I don’t expect you to agree but at least read up on her. I did read up on Obama.

    http://features.csmonitor.com/politics/2008/08/29/tougher-in-alaska-host-geo-beach-discusses-sarah-palin/

  6. August 30, 2008 at 15:37 | #6

    Thanks for the link, James.  I did read it and amazingly enough the right-wing author liked right-wing Palin.  I’ve done a LOT of reading on her in the last 24 hours. (Unfortunately her own website is down due to excessive traffic.) I bet I know more about her than McCain did when he picked her.  (Since he had met her once at a meeting, talked to her once on the phone, and then called again to offer her the job.)

    I agree she might be a good political choice for McCain, but she’s a very bad choice for America.  She is in favor of every short-sighted policy in the current Republican playbook.  Teach religious nonsense to school kids, blow the environment for temporary oil fix, roll back women’s rights (funny, huh?) and condemn our children to more debt.  Her solution to high energy prices?  A massive subsidy.  This is conservatism?  What are conservatives conserving?

  7. August 30, 2008 at 22:16 | #7

    John Podesta said it best: Sarah Palin has the ideology of Dick Cheney and the qualifications of Dan Quayle.

    This is a Hail Mary pass if I’ve ever seen one. McCain could have sent Romney up the middle to try for a first down, but he’s decided to throw the long ball to someone who’s never even played a big game. There’s always a chance, but…

    America certainly needs Hockey Moms, and I sure hope she gets the opportunity to remain one.

  8. Neil
    September 3, 2008 at 18:41 | #8

    I’ve got troll hair up my nose, forgive me.

    Shorter James:  I’m a willfully ignorant old bigot who is so ashamed of my useless, limp micropenis and my complete lack of achievement in life that I can’t stand the fact that there are actually accomplished black people in the world.  So out of bigotry and spite, I will vote to turn this country over to corporations and religious crusaders wholesale! 

    Why do bitter losers even bother leaving their dried-up turds of wisdom all over the internet?  Does James actually think that there are many readers here who are so lazy and complacent that they won’t spend a few minutes to find out who the candidates are? 
      Here’s a hint, James…that’s what ignorant conservatives do!  Tow the party line at any cost, ridicule dissenters rather than risk debate, and depend on self-serving, jingoistic and biased sources for their overrated, rarely challenged opinions.
      The only way in which this vp pick is prudent is its complete dishonesty.  As James proves, the “stupid” vote is behind her 100%!  It’s sickening to watch the repubs play this card…the party that would glady demote all women to broodmare status is trying to push the “mommy” button. 
      Of course, the right-wing lapdog corporate media will refuse to ask a single tough question, and will do their best to help middle-class women “identify” with a woman who hates women’s rights!  I think the repubs might have reached a new height of hypocrisy with this one, and that takes some doing!

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