All Others Palin Comparison

Just a few quick thoughts on last night’s speeches: 

Mitt – nice.  I actually think Mitt could be a decent President, but he lacks something. 

Huckabee – funny and nice.  In the end I couldn’t be more happy he isn’t the nominee. 

Rudy – good, but not quite great.  A hard night for me as it was another reminder that I must either chew my arm off or vote for McCain.  Damn it Rudy, run a traditional campaign next time. 

And then there was Sarah Palin. If I end up chewing my arm off and voting for McCain, she is definitely going to make it go down easier.  Every shot at Obama and the press was four days in making.  She was attacked from every angle and it was refreshing to finally hear her rebuttal.  There will certainly be time enough later to find if there is more substance to this woman, but make no mistake her speech last night put a shot across Obama’s bow.  Two can play the Rockstar.  

She’s folksy, but not fake.  Her family was real and haven’t yet learned the robotic smiles and stiff waving, instead they looked a lot like my next door neighbors.  Or better yet, the Jordan family.  The best shot of family last night was easily when Palin’s youngest daughter was holding baby Trig and trying to wet down his hair by licking her hand.  Real.  Not Washington real.  And not to mention really damn cute.  Don’t worry though, I am sure a blogger at they Daily Kos will write that whole scene was staged.  They were right to try and bring Palin down early, she could actually change this election.  A real woman.  A real person.  Really good. 

Is it real enough to run the country?  Does she have what it takes? The jury is still probably rightfully out on that question, but lets just say the first night was…too CNN analyst cliche…a grand slam.

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18 Responses to All Others Palin Comparison

  1. Dude, her teleprompter got all messed up half way through and she friggen winged the rest of her speech… When Obama’s teleprompter went down once.. he uh’d and um’d until it was fixed…

    Not that giving a good speech is the same as being a good president, but in this case, it is one of those “qualities” that they keep bringing up about Obama so it’s on the table, baby.

  2. EW says:

    I’m someone deeply disappointed in the Palin pick.

    Her first national moment was last night’s speech. It will be remembered mostly for its attacks on Obama and satisfying the conservative base of the Republican Party by attacking him.

    Obama’s first national moment was his 2004 keynote address. It was, simply, the most electrifying political speech in my life. It took the high road during a nasty campaign. It appealed to the better angels of our nature. I’ve heard Chicago Machine Democrats and conservatives wonder if Obama can do anything other than talk. But what when he reaches the heights?

    However, he’s proven himself by winning the Democratic Primary. He’s handled that pressure with tremendous grace, despite lots of gratuitous attacks against his wife and family, and his neighborhood (which isn’t that bad as university neighborhoods go). We know who he is and how he’ll govern: a liberal Democrat willing to listen, but unafraid to exercise power (unlike Carter).

    When Obama’s religion, beliefs, and family were challenged, he responded with probably the most compelling speech on race by a politician since LBJ said, “We shall overcome.”

    When Palin’s family was attacked unfairly, she turned to petty insults.

    Obama’s walked the high road, charted a rocky path to power, and is on the cusp of achieving it. I think he is the best candidate. I just wish that the Republicans could somehow win the Congress.

    I don’t know who I’ll vote for. I should be a steady Republican, but it’s damn hard when that Party offers only platitudes: vague assurances of victory, more drilling, and populist demonizing.

  3. Obama wasn’t running for office when he gave the speech you are talking about in 2004. A little different situation.

    Obama’s walked the high road? I guess, but I will have to come up with a different definition for the all the negative things he said. The DNC wasn’t exactly a lovefest.

    And we know how he will govern? How? By the way he’s run his campaign, because he certainly hasn’t done much in the way of passing legislation. Palin exposing how little Obama has really done besides giving speeches isn’t just petty insults. Am I remembering incorrectly EW, but I once made a case for how JFK and King changed the nation with words. You argued that against that. Now you believe Obama is a better leader because he can give a good speech?

  4. samuel says:

    came across your blog today and am compelled to comment on the notion that obama was a do nothing while in the illinois legislature.
    he either wrote or sposered legislation on ethics reform, health care initiatives, enhanced tax credits for low income workers, welfare reform, and increased subsidies for childcare. essentially he delivered for the working poor in illinois.
    he was also the chair of the senate health and human services committee and for 8 years taught constitutional law at one of the finest law schools in the land.
    and i’m hard pressed to understand the snarky comment about his days as a community organizer, as if there was somehow dishonor in trying to assist those without a voice.
    so let us not forget:
    Jesus was a Community Organizer, and Pontias Pilate was a Governor

  5. DumbAss Tanker says:

    Since Rush has been so successful in organizing a Conservative community, perhaps we could analogize him to Jesus too, that should soothe the outraged community organizer organized community.

    Speaking of Rush, I was somewhat surprised to hear him toss out a factoid during the few minutes I tuned in to him at lunch, to the effect that during Obama’s 8 years of teaching, he had apparently managed to avoid actually publishing anything. If true, this is indeed a signal achievement in academia. He could turn a considerable profit at passing this secret on to other academics, provided of course he did not have to write about it in a scholarly way, since that might undermine the credibility of the premise. I’m thinking seminars and DVDs…

    As far as governorships are concerned, it would have been somewhat more damning to bring up the spectre of Jimmy Carter, unfortunately everything respecting JC, aside from that one previous office held, bears a much greater resemblance to Obama than it does to Palin.

    Ah well. I am delighted with the Palin pick, though Condi Rice would’ve been great too. None of the other identified contenders had any real appeal for conservatives, and it has completely turned around a taste for voting GOP that struggled to rise to the “Hold your nose and make a face” level among us.

    I can’t say I really buy the “high road” pitch, Obama does not lack for well-funded attackers aligned with him and against any GOP candidate, and one can afford to disparage the muck when there are others eager to shovel it onto an opponent for him, so that he need not soil his hands. The shoveling that has occurred in the past week has done a marvelous job of putting Democrat pretensions of equality to the lie, though, a point that has not been lost on most women in both parties.

  6. I was voting for McCain no matter what. I hate both parties. (Not the people, there are great people in both parties.) But the parties themselves suck nuts.

    For me it comes down to this. I KNOW McCain will extend his hand to the other party to get things done. He’s done it many times before so I believe him when he says he will do it again. Obama has said he will do it, but there is no proof of that on a national level. His record as a senator has been too liberal for me. Also the fact that he is against drilling for Oil and Natural gas off the coast as a stop gap until we develop viable solutions (which are decades away probably.) is a dealbreaker.

    Energy is my #2 priority behind security… hell, maybe #1 because energy would make security a whole lot easier.

    I will always, however, be grateful to Obama for crushing the Clinton machine.

  7. BGunzy says:

    Three things, Jordan:

    1) Palin sweetens up a turd burger, but it’s still a turd burger. Constitution Party is my choice in ’08.

    2) When are we having this CBB Summit? I’m now working in Johnston weekdays, so I’d be able to attend.

    3) What are your thoughts on Death Magnetic? Heard/saw “The Day That Never Comes” on YouTube…it has a certain “…And Justice For All” feel to it.

  8. CBB summit: I suppose it depends on Dorf. Dorf what day would work for you?

    I like what I’ve heard of Death Magnetic so far. Hard to put a finger on it’s sound. Kind of a cross between Puppets/Justice/Black. The guitar riffs and drums just don’t seem inspired. The lyrics are very black/Load/St. Anger-ish. And the drums sound recycled. I know I sound down on the album, but from a first listen to, it’s decent. Time will tell how it grows on me.

  9. I still stand by my prediction: Chinese Democracy will be the rock album of the year (if it releases). From the 9 songs I’ve heard: fresh, solid, fairly ground breaking, epic, and it flat out rocks.

  10. EW says:

    First, let me say I’m more anti-Republican than pro-Obama. I have serious misgivings about him.

    I have argued that words alone aren’t a good measure of a politician. Obama was running for office in 2004 when he made the speech. The speech propelled him into the national spotlight. The speech wasn’t enough to make his career, and it by and large hasn’t.

    What impresses me most about Obama is his judgment — his preternatural ability to make the right decision. And he is scary smart. How many brilliant African Americans went to Harvard Law, but never became president of Harvard Law Review? He did it; surrounded by a sea of sharks and ambitious students, he did it. And, by all accounts, he did a great job.

    People make fun of being a “community organizer.” However, by doing so, Obama remained an outsider to the Chicago machine and its corruption. Additionally, he never descended to the mafia-esque extortion and shake-down cons that organizers like Jesse Jackson routinely perform.

    Far from being an urban elitist, his biggest political break in Illinois politics came when Paul Simon endorsed him. In the last 100 years, Simon was one of the the singular downstate politicians from Illinois, respected across both parties. Probably only Everett Dirksen and Jim Edgar were more effective. Simon didn’t go out of his way to endorse Chicago pols.

    Then he won the Primary this year. This wasn’t some off-year primary with weak candidates. His main opponent was Hillary Clinton, who ran the best-planned, best-financed primary campaign up to that point in Democratic history. She was widely-seen as a shoe-in. But Obama beat her by outfoxing her, having a better strategy for the caucus states (like Iowa), and raising more money than her. John Edwards wasn’t chopped liver also.

    I don’t have a starry-eyed crush on Obama. He is a Democrat running as a Democrat. I think that Congress will be solidly Democratic the next two years. Consequently, Congress will pass some bad bills filled with disproved liberal orthodoxy. Will he have the courage to veto or oppose those bills? I don’t know.

    And, Dumbass Tanker, I just can’t compare Obama to Carter. Carter’s three major problems were: 1) foreign policy based upon respect for human rights, 2) cocooning himself in the White House, and 3) slave to 70s Democratic orthodoxy. The first two issues aren’t really a concern for Obama, and Bill Clinton did much to free the Democrats from their problems in the 70s. Can Obama control the Democratic Congressional agenda stemming from Pelosi and Reid? That’s my biggest worry.

    I think that Obama is probably the best candidate, all things considered. But moreso, I look at the Republican Party (not necessarily the Republicans I know) and see a party deluding itself with decadence and isolation. It’s a party that cares more about de-clawing the judiciary and looking tough than actually enhancing American power abroad. It’s a party populated by so-called conservatives who cheered when President Bush unconscionably landed on that aircraft carrier.

    Basically, I don’t think the Republicans have spent enough time in political exile for their sins during the Bush Administration. And I don’t think Obama will be a total fuck-up. So, that’s my line of thought.

    I wish that the Republicans hadn’t traded its moderate Northeast politicians (Nelson Rockefeller, 2002-2005 Mitt Romney, George H.W. Bush) for sunbelt conservatism (a region propped up only by a trillion dollar water welfare system).

    * I knew Obama never published anything. But, really, does the world need more law review articles? And it’s not like Obama’s bona fides as a writer are in doubt.

  11. We just went through an administration where the President couldn’t seem to find his veto pen, I really don’t like the idea of an Obama administration with a Democratic congress. You think the GOP were spenders, wait until the Democrats get free rein. And Obama doesn’t deny it either, it’s all outlined in his plans.

    I know McCain ‘might’ stand up against his own party, I can’t say the same about Obama. EW, if you think Palin is a bad choice, I wonder what you make of Biden. Joe Biden is everything Obama claimed he is running against.

    Nope, I think the last two weeks might be viewed as a turning point. Obama finally got caught up in rockstar mentality and has starting acting like Hillary at the beginning of the election. I never thought he seemed smug until the DNCC.

  12. EW says:

    Most of the time, the VP doesn’t matter much. I think Biden will be less powerful as VP. If he were in the Senate, he would chair the Foreign Relations Committee and have a very public forum to say whatever he wants. Now, he has to side with Obama, whether he wants to or not.

  13. EW says:

    And, Jeremie, I mostly agree with your conclusions in this post and comments. I’m just a little more centrist than you are.

    I’m just really mad at the Republicans, and don’t worry as much about a Democratic administration.

  14. DumbAss Tanker says:

    EW, your faith in the unicorns of the lollipop forest is touching, I just don’t share it. The Republican Revolution of the 90s may have descended into corruption and blundering for which they were duly spanked, the Democrats have never departed from the mire of it except for the outsider from Georgia who was a bigger disaster than the machine candidates.

    I’m more of a Libertarian than a Republican (excepting the basic Libertarian problem of possessing a childishly-simplistic view of foreign affairs, which makes me wince with pain when I hear it blathered out loud, as well as some remarkably poorly-thought-out taxation ideas).

    We’ll see. I think you are vastly overestimating Obama’s judgment, which is essentially unproven in any endeavor not centering on self-promotion.

  15. Sonda says:

    I enjoyed both Palin and McCain’s speeches. I can not wait until the debates. The race has become very interesting.

  16. EW says:

    Well, sir, when you look at spending, the Republicans haven’t exactly carried the torch lately. And, John “Keating 5” McCain doesn’t look to improve that much. His talk about earmarks rings so false. It’s like me buying a yacht and then chastising myself for splurging on the occasional Starbucks latte.

    There’s really nothing the Republicans are offering except culture war BS. They can’t cut taxes because they spent too much. They can’t talk tough about foreign policy and nonproliferation when they let countries like North Korea get nukes. Really, I think American power has diminished in the past 8 years. They can’t talk about competent government. They can only say that Democrats will do it worse.

    Basically, I’m frustrated at Republicans from west of 100 degrees longitude, south of the Mason Dixon line, and lots of the super religious ones.

    And, Democratic presidents aren’t controlled by machines. LBJ wasn’t; neither was Clinton. Democratic presidents are largely paralyzed by 10 trillion small interests groups, which is a plus in my book.

  17. DumbAss Tanker says:

    EW, you know I do share your discomfort about the religious card which is so eagerly played by the GOP. However, the Dems have their own cross to bear, thump Bibles at, and generally whoop it up over, which is the whole Black church constituency. Does the name ‘Jeremiah Wright’ ring a bell? Obama didn’t attend that church because of the special, personal call of a loving God, it was where his voting base congregated.

    No slight on him for doing it, of course, it is a simple fact of political life that each side’s candidate will and must please the religious component of that side’s base, with greater or lesser degrees of individual sincerity as the case may be.

    Both parties are coalitions of disparate, and if forced into direct contact, often mutually-hostile interests. Personally I see the Democrats as constituting a bigger threat for producing oppression in the name of security, “Healthy prosperous society,” and the ‘greater good’ since their schemes tend to involve more collectivism and restrictive social controls, which in an earlier era could and did extend to eugenics. Not to mention taxes to pay for them.

    Though I am ambivalent on the abortion issue, and it isn’t a driver for me, the whole Left’s defense of very-late-term abortions without even accepting the limitation of “when necessary to actually save the mother’s life” works against them in this perception, since from the point of view of their opposition it is a bootstrap to legalistic negation of even fundamental humanity, bolstering an underlying distrust of just where the Hell they might be taking that, once entrusted with the steering wheel.

    On the Right, fiscal Conservatives care about economic and taxation issues, often to the point of failing to notice the forest of foreign affairs and threats which surrounds the tree of free trade, and relate to the need for a military only in terms of protecting markets, but at least (usually) have a global outlook. The religious component has ideas on both foreign and domestic affairs that are essentially mystic, and therefore only incidentally subject to rational analysis. The Libertarian component focuses on individual rights to an extent that amounts to willful disregard of the consequences of the policies they support, particularly in the provision of essential social services, defense, and the real needs of any sort of cohesive culture.

    Fortunately most of the mainstream GOP represents some blending of these schools, rather than hard-over exemplars of each approach, which is not so true on the Left as I see it. I’ll leave dissection (preferably vivisection actually) of the Left’s internal stresses to someone else, though. And not that we haven’t both met individuals who exemplify one of these schools of thought to the exclusion of the other two, as you well know.

    Your attempt to distinguish Obama from Carter brought me to realize you weren’t around back then, young whippersnapper that you are. There was the same messianic BS about Carter then as there is for Obama now, pre-computer airbrush art of his as Jesus, and all that baldersdash. His proponents were every bit as eager to tout his intellectuality as you are Obama’s. However, there proved to be a huge gulf between intellect and judgment. Of all four people at the top of the tickets today, McCain has far and away the best proven record on that. Palin and Obama are both promising but honestly she has had more opportunity to show it than he due to their respective offices, and what she has shown so far is very encouraging. Biden is pretty hopeless on that one, and for him I’m not even convinced on the ‘intellect’ part, he seems to be still living in the early 90s.

  18. EW says:

    Sir, you sound like a betrayed Carter voter, n’est-ce pas? Carter may be one of the worst three Presidents of last century, but he did do some great things. He appointed Paul Volker as chairman of the Fed, and…and…well, that one was pretty good!

    I agree with most of what you wrote. It’s true that if I were to move back home and register with a political party, it would be an 80% certainty I’d register with the Republican Party.

    I agree with you about the factions within the Republican Party. However, I say that the Republicans are victims of their own success. They are the greatest campaigners in history. Their direct mail, fundraising, advertising, and GOTV are truly stunning. And it’s all done without the media even noticing. It’s a fierce, slash-and-burn style.

    John McCain was probably the most beloved figure of the Washington media. However, his campaign’s only surged ahead when Palin was announced as VP. And the excitement about her has been in spite of negative media coverage (which is accurately calling her a liar and lightweight). His campaign’s not surged because of his speeches about honor and country.

    It’s also an insane method of governing. It’s all right to campaign against elites. However, when you govern by ignoring the elite in a particular field (economics, science, disaster preparedness), it’s a recipe for disaster. You have your hard-core supporters, but eventually no one else follows. It’s preaching to the choir and poor leadership.

    I don’t see Obama as a messiah or some other BS. One reason Obama just can’t preach to the choir is because while 45% of Americans self-identify as conservative, only 30% identify as liberal. His choir is too small. He’ll have to reach out. Which is unlike the Republicans, who keep thinking they have a perpetual majority.

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