September 13, 2008

Sarah Palin

I've been giving a lot of thought about what to post about Sarah Palin. How, for example, the Republicans can live with their own hypocrisy by playing the sexism card when delegates from the state of Indiana wore "Hoosiers for the Hot Chick" buttons to the Republican National Convention. Or the double-standard of claiming that one of the things that makes her qualified for the position is the fact that she's a working mom, but then saying that any discussion about her family is off-limits (I mean, if you bring something to the table, doesn't that mean it's on the table? You can't go and say, "I'm qualified for this office because I've been a US Senator, but you can't talk about my Congressional record--that's off-limits").

And then there are the rumors. Oh, the rumors. Might I take this opportunity to point everyone to and There is enough to dislike about Sarah Palin based in fact and reality already. There's no need to invent or distort anything to try to make her scarier. Furthermore, the rumors simply serve to distract from the real issues, and distraction from the real issues is exactly what provides a boost to the McCain/Palin campaign.

For that reason, I've been reluctant to say much about Sarah Palin--because I'd like the spotlight to get back on McCain and the issues. However, my main issue right now is McCain's lack of honesty in his advertising and statements, and Palin has been a big part of that. So here I am, about to make the following point.

I had heard some interesting things about McCain's interview on The View, a tv show that makes me want to gouge my eyes out with a sharp, pointed stick. However, the things I heard were so interesting I decided to watch the interview anyway. I then read what I thought was a very salient opinion piece entitled, "Thank God for Barbara Walters?". The article author made a point I really wanted to reiterate. Here's a clip from the View interview. Now if you hate Barbara Walters as much as I do--and believe me, my annoyance and enmity for the woman knows no bounds--I'll just let you know that the relevant point starts right around 3:50 into the clip.

Walters says that Palin states, several times, that she was chosen to be a "reformer." We've heard the word "reform" about 75 billionty times the last 2 weeks or so. Walters pressed McCain to be specific about exactly who and what Palin is there to reform. From the article:

I love how McCain thinks that by just saying they're going to reform Washington over and over again that this is somehow a sufficient explanation of his policy. Also I guess what we're supposed to glean from his defense is that Washington was just fine until two years ago, when the big bad Democrats took over and everything went straight to hell. Oh, and this is the same Democratic Congress that McCain assures us he can work with in a more effective, bipartisan way than Barack Obama. Yeah, right. But I digress...

"First of all, earmark spending, which she vetoed a half a billion dollars worth in the state of Alaska."

But she also put earmarks in, Ms. Walters noted.

"Not as governor she didn't," Mr. McCain said.

But as governor, she did. As the Anchorage Daily News among others, has reported, in Ms. Palin's first year as governor, she requested 52 earmarks valued at $256 million, and this year, her office asked the Alaska delegation in Washington to help land 31 earmarks valued at $197 million. Also, Citizens Against Government Waste ranks Alaska as having received the "most pork per capita" of all states this year.

(emphasis and links replicated from the article)

The article continues to, I believe, the crux of this issue:

Does he not know that Sarah Palin asked for and received millions of dollars worth of earmarks? Or is he just lying? It can only be one of these two possibilities and it doesn't make you a biased, flaming liberal if you force McCain to pick one.

It's true--either he doesn't fully know Palin's record, or he does and he deliberately misstated it. Either is profoundly disturbing. You either have a liar or you have someone who has demonstrated unbelievably poor judgement by selecting a running mate whose own record he doesn't know. If he knew and he lied, well, then he's a liar and there's not much more to point out about why lying is not a good quality in a President. If he was just ignorant, it's scary that not only does he lack the judgement to select someone he's familiar with, he's also willing to try to sell that choice by making claims he doesn't even know are true or not. Talk now and check the facts later? That's good judgement?

Posted by Shelby at September 13, 2008 04:11 PM

Besides hearing "reform" about 75 billion times, we've also heard the words, "maverick" and "vetting" just as much!

And seriously, somebody show McCain how to use a computer!! (AGE is no excuse, my mother is 66 is she knows how to send an email among other things online -- he just doesn't want to learn.)

All I can say about Palin is she is merely a distraction in this election. Like Pamela Anderson said about her the other day, she "can just suck it."

Posted by: Katrina R. at September 13, 2008 09:35 PM
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