Very well, we now have the line-up of the major parties for the fall: Sen. Obama/Sen. Biden and Sen. McCain/Gov. Palin.
Can I choose just one?
I want the one without the Sen. in front of their name.
Gov. Sarah Palin.
No, really! I don't agree with all of her positions, but she has more on the ball than the other three.
Ok, remove her experience as Governor, Mayor and heading up her own fishing business and what is left in the way of Executive experience amongst the other three? Heading up a squadron is nice, but that is military leadership, not Executive experience in my book... if someone had to go and defend budgets, project cost expenditures and do the five-year out-cycle projections, that would be heading into military-executive experience. That is why the 'ticket punching' in the military is necessary for advancement: it gets you into other areas of experience and gives a demonstration of your ability beyond combat leadership and equivalent of civilian-realm execution.
Sen. Obama's time on the failed Annenberg Challenge? Well, just where did the money go? Why doesn't he want to talk about it, and Bill Ayers and the money? Look, if the guy is a failure at that and won't come clean about it, then how the hell can anyone vote for him? It is 'Executive experience'... negative, yes, but some is better than none, isn't it? We have had many failures in business and public projects that would be able to recover from those failures as they learned their mistakes.
That leaves Sen. Biden, and he has been in the Senate so long he has forgotten what the world outside of it looks like. Before that its, what, three years as a lawyer? Executive experience for him is nil.
So, I have a successful businessman, successful mayor of a small town for many years and successful Governor of a State bordering Putin's Russia, plus having worked a successful deal with Canada on an oil pipeline.
1 out of 4.
Too bad she isn't at the top of the ticket.
Unfortunately, no matter how good a tactical move, even strategic move this is by Sen. McCain, I have the rest of his record to deal with. If Gov. Palin is sent on an outreach to the old 'Rust Belt' States and in through the Appalachia from central NY State through Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North and South Carolina to Georgia, plus Michigan, Colorado... then I will start to see something different from the McCain campaign. Those regions play on Sarah Palin's strengths of having blue collar roots, leading a small business and being on the last, great wilderness of America and being more of a frontiersman than we have seen in over a generation on the political scene. Her personal strengths and background will play very well in those regions.
If that is the strategic move by Sen. McCain, then the Republican Party may just survive, because there is a whole group of folks throughout those States that started walking out of the Democratic Party in 1968. Reagan could entice them, but did not fundamentally change the Party to bring them in. That frontier spirit is still alive and is the single largest rift in America since its founding. These are the areas where women had to be strong as the wilderness was lethal, and where the men helped to cut a new life from that wilderness for their families. Later they would slowly move to bend steel to their will along with those who were poor that came to help with good jobs. They sought the frontiers of the West and finally Alaska.
To bring them in requires that Republicans stop moralizing and start enforcing their ethics on those things they claimed about small government, limited spending, low taxation, and protecting the Nation with her friends and allies in liberty. Get this god damned government out of trying to do so much and interfere in our lives of freedom and liberty. For that is the wilderness our founders wandered into - the great belief that each man should accomplish as best he can and society support its wholeness while government protects it. That is the view of Thomas Paine in Common Sense, and I support it fully as it is rational and an excellent observation.
Government is not a 'solution' to anything: it is our accumulation of negative liberties used sparingly so that we can rest assured that they will not be abused in our names. They are not good, those things we invest in government, and trying to make them into good assuredly destroys us. At best we seek equal protection under the law, without government supporting some over others.
It is to be regretted that the rich and powerful too often bend the acts of government to their selfish purposes. Distinctions in society will always exist under every just government. Equality of talents, of education, or of wealth can not be produced by human institutions. In the full enjoyment of the gifts of Heaven and the fruits of superior industry, economy, and virtue, every man is equally entitled to protection by law; but when the laws undertake to add to these natural and just advantages artificial distinctions, to grant titles, gratuities, and exclusive privileges, to make the rich richer and the potent more powerful, the humble members of society-the farmers, mechanics, and laborers-who have neither the time nor the means of securing like favors to themselves, have a right to complain of the injustice of their Government. There are no necessary evils in government. Its evils exist only in its abuses. If it would confine itself to equal protection, and, as Heaven does its rains, shower its favors alike on the high and the low, the rich and the poor, it would be an unqualified blessing. In the act before me there seems to be a wide and unnecessary departure from these just principles.
- President Andrew Jackson's Bank Veto Message, 10 JUL 1832 (Source: The Avalon Project)
Our negative liberties are not evil, but their exercise by individuals would destroy society and civilization. Those that live in wilderness see the Laws of Nature and abide by them and remember that society is precious, just as government is necessary. "Reform" only is necessary when government has forgotten its place and tries to displace society in many places and utilize negative liberties of coercion and twists them to those means. Those liberties protect us when applied to criminals or those seeking to make Public or Private War upon us. They only become evil in their abuse against the citizenry and civilization when government no longer keeps to its limited place.
Gov. Palin, from what I have seen, can bring this message home as she has demonstrated ethics against her own party in the case of corrupt Republicans and 'The Bridge to Nowhere'. In the single case where there has been a 'scandal' she has so opened her doors to investigation that no subpoena's needed to be issued as all came willingly when asked. She 'walks the walk' and does not seek to provide special favors to some over others in regulations, unlike the other three who have each supported that... which is why I am allergic to voting for them as they have demonstrated more than enough twisting of the laws to special interests against the humble members of society, seeking to lift some up over others by race, gender or nation of origin.
She is a deep breath of fresh air in the fetid swamp of this Presidential election cycle.
There is a case to be laid out for a new direction of the Republican Party towards tradition, ethics and limited government.
I doubt that the 'maverick' will ever go that far.
But a strong fisherman from the Bering Sea?
She is the 'Deadliest Catch' this cycle.
Because it is 'Tougher in Alaska'.
A serving of moose stew, if you please.