John McCain served his country with incredible honor during the Vietnam War. He’s not doing so now. It’s time to dump him and there’s a viable contender facing off against him in the upcoming primaries. A friend forwarded the following email to me:
The two top names currently being bandied about for the Democrat presidential slate in 2016 are Hillary Clinton and Elizabeth Warren. Democrats are saying that Hillary is “inevitable.” I recall them saying the same thing in 2008, and that was before she had the Benghazi albatross hanging about her neck. My suspicion is that, just as happened in 2008, were she to run, the media would roll out the red carpet for her, and she’d soil it within a few months.
No matter what Hillary does, she cannot get past the fact that, at some visceral, lizard-brain level, people who are not true believers neither like nor trust her. And I do mean visceral. We here are informed about what a squirrelly person she is, both personally and politically, whether one looks at Benghazi, lesbianism, political and economic ties to antisemitic Arab leagues, or whatever else. Most Americans neither know nor care. They just don’t like her.
And what about Elizabeth Warren? Well, Americans neither know nor will they care that Warren’s Senatorial race proved that she’s a liar. As Democrat politicians get caught in increasingly egregious lies, it’s rather ironic that people care less, not more. “That’s just what politicians do,” they say, when what they really should be saying is “That’s what Democrat politicians do, so why the Hell are we voting for them?”
I’m embarrassed to admit this about the American people, but I suspect even Obama’s manifest, gross, far-reaching lies about Obamacare will eventually get nothing more than shrugs from Americans. Those who are ideologically blind will even add “The Republicans made him do it.” So Warren’s lies won’t get her.
I suspect that what will destroy Warren in the end is the same thing that wiped out Hillary: she’s not likable. Exactly like Hillary, Warren is angry, smug, and condescending. Obama is too, but he was clever enough to hide that on the campaign trail. Hillary couldn’t and Warren can’t.
My own outdated experience with having Warren as a law professor some decades ago is that she’s also a terribly bad communicator. Like Obama, she does fine with the prepared speech, but she’s incoherent when she’s off the cuff. And unlike Obama, she’s not black nor does she have a photogenic smile nor “ripped abs” to help her out. Ask her the right question, meaning an important question for which she doesn’t have a pre-packaged answer, and all you’ll get is a boatload of angry BS.
William Jacobson, of Legal Insurrection, thinks as I do about Warren, and therefore devoutly hopes that she runs, because he’s assuming that she will collapse before a Republican candidate. I’d like to agree with him, but I fear greatly that Republicans will, as always, destroy themselves. With our luck, rather than having Ted Cruz, or Bill Lee, Alan West, or even Chris Christie (whom I’ve come to dislike but whose still more conservative than not) on the ballot, Republican primaries are going to result in our having John McCain on the ballot. Indeed, with Open Primaries now in major states such as California, the best tactic the Democrats could use would be to put John McCain or Lindsay Graham or some other self-hating “conservative” on the ballot against Warren or whomever else the Democrats run with.
Let’s get this out of the way. You might not want to vote for Martha Coakley. You might think she deserves what’s she’s getting after an absentee, self-satisfied campaign (why should I bail her out?). You likely want to send a message to everyone from the attorney general all the way to every Democratic official in Washington, DC. Odds are you didn’t vote for her in the primary. And, you might be wondering if it’ll make a difference who wins this Tuesday.
You got every reason to be pissed, but it needs to be clear: not voting for Coakley is the same as voting for Brown. And voting for Brown is a very, very bad thing.
Does this argument sound familiar to you? It should. This is precisely the same argument conservatives making in 2008 when they thought about voting for McCain. They really didn’t like him, but they were going to hold their collective noses and vote for McCain, because voting for Obama would be “a very, very bad thing.” Sadly, for many the McCain stench was too great, and Obama won (a pattern that may repeat itself in Massachusetts, with Coakley and Brown as the stinky players).
As you know, I’ve been trying to convince myself for a while that, in a peculiar way, Obama is a good thing. Until Obama, people could convince themselves that liberals should be viewed by what they said, not by what they did, primarily because semi-functioning Republicans were there to put the brakes on the worst liberal excess. With Obama and the Democrats having power fettered only by voter dismay, not by effective Republican opposition, the country is having to face — for the first time — the reality and not the rhetoric. I think they’re finding the chasm between the two unnerving. And I think Massachusetts is the first place in which we’re seeing voters figure out, finally, that this is not John F. Kennedy’s Democratic party any more.
Al Franken, the rude buffoon from Minnesota deserved to be taken to task, and John McCain did it.
The set-up: Joe Lieberman ran out of time to finish his talk; he asked, as Senators do, for a couple of extra minutes; and Al Franken, who was chairing, refused, something Senators have never done:
I’m going to be working, not blogging, tomorrow morning, November 4, 2008, so feel free to consider this an open thread. I can’t let this occasion go by without a few words, though.
On the candidates:
If you believe government can solve most of our problems; if you believe Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are better at spending your money than you are; if you believe that the government exists to redistribute wealth from those it defines as rich to those victim groups it classes as deserving; if you believe that we ought to continue to be dependent on energy sources in the hands of our enemies; if you believe that the best defense is to disarm yourself; if you believe that the government should control the press to ensure “freedom”; if you believe that there should be no limits on immigrants coming into the country or on the benefits extended to those immigrants; and if you believe that judges shouldn’t just decide law, but should make it, according to their personal preferences, then you should definitely vote for Obama.
However, if you believe that you, not Barack/Pelosi/Reid, are the master of your own destiny; if you believe that a country must have secure borders and controlled immigration to remain strong; if you believe that government doesn’t make money, people make money; if you believe that the best defense is to appear ready, willing and able to fight to defend yourself; if you believe that your country should be energy independent for both security and economic purposes; if you believe in a free press unhindered by government mandated “fairness”; and if you believe that judges’ job is to apply the law and the legislature’s job is to make it (although make as little of it as possible), then you should definitely vote for McCain.
On the election tomorrow:
The most important thing you should do is ignore the media entirely and VOTE. The media will err about reporting closing times for voting. The media will enthusiastically report that Obama is winning in a landslide according to exit polls, but its talking heads will neglect to explain that, traditionally, conservatives don’t respond to exit polls, making the results completely one-sided and meaningless. The media will declare certain Eastern states for Obama long before actual results are in — with the result that people west of the Mississippi might think it’s pointless to vote.
It’s never pointless to vote. If you think you might be too late to vote, don’t rely on the media to check poll closing times. Go check the polling place out yourself. Take the time to drive up to your polling place and see if you can get in.
Every vote, from every person, in every state counts. If you are the last person voting on the furthest island of Hawaii tomorrow, YOUR VOTE COUNTS. Please remember the infinitesimally small margin by which Bush won Florida in 2000. EVERY VOTE COUNTS. I cannot guarantee that we will win if all of us vote tomorrow, but I can guarantee that we will lose if we allow the media to bamboozle us into walking away from the polls before the last polling place is locked and the lights turned out.
And one more thing: if Obama wins tomorrow — and it’s entirely possible that he will — do not throw temper tantrums and announce that you’re moving someplace where conservatives are respected (and good luck finding that place, anyway). Instead, immediately begin to work, not for 2012, but for 2010. Because I can almost promise you that, after a mere two years of non-stop, all encompassing Democratic rule, voters will be desperate to throw the Democrats out of the House and Senate. Then, having accomplished that goal, start working for 2012, when Palin and Cantor and Jindal and Steele, and a whole host of other exciting young conservatives will be chomping at the bit to take over the reins of government.
It’s true that an all-Democratic government led by Obama can do a lot of damage in a short time, but it will do even more damage if we turn away in disgust and cede government entirely to the Democratic agenda. We still have a voice in this country and we will continue to have a voice even if the first thing the Democrats do is pass a new Fairness Doctrine. When the old Fairness Doctrine was wiped out, everyone was surprised by the pent-up hunger for conservative thought. This time, though, we know that hunger exists, and we will find an outlet by which to feed it.
But let’s not worry about that future. Instead….
VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE, VOTE
There’s one word that inevitably comes to mind when I think of the Paragraph Farmer: thoughtful. Patrick looks deeply into issues, rather than just skating over the surface. If you scootch yourself over to this link, you will see a very thoughtful post explaining why Patrick is voting for McCain — and, if you’re a little shy of McCain, it might just convince.
And for a series of McCain endorsements, Soccer Dad has assembled a whole bunch of ’em, including one from yours truly. Some of your favorite conservative bloggers are represented there, and you may find interesting their three sentence encomiums for the McCain/Palin ticket.
Something weird has been happening at SNL, which has been on point, funny, and not too mean to Republicans. Witness McCain’s appearance there last night:
Do not give up. Do not give up. Do not give up.
This video, from Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald’s movie New Moon, shows how enthusiasm and belief have their own momentum. You’ll want to start watching at about 2:20 — and then stop whenever you feel like it:
Give me some men who are stout-hearted men
Who will fight for the right they adore
Start me with ten who are stout-hearted men
And I’ll soon give you ten thousand more-ore
Shoulder to shoulder, and bolder and bolder
They grow as they go to the fore
Then there’s nothing in the world
Can halt or mar a plan
When stout-hearted men
Can stick together – man – to man…
You who have dreams,
If you act, they’ll come true
To turn your dreams to a fact
It’s up to you
If you have the soul and the spirit
Never fear it, you’ll see it through
Hearts can inspire
Other hearts with their fire
Let the flame burn high
For tonight we do or we die
My big push in the next two weeks is to keep the focus on the two parties’ differing visions of America. It’s much easier to get a handle on the big picture, and avoids the mud-slinging associated with the personalities lined up behind these ideological views. I’ve pointed out that, if you like big government, whether it’s supposedly benefitting you or actually burdening you, pick Obama/Biden, no matter the problems with those candidates. Likewise, if you like smaller government (because, sadly, there is no small government), even though it means you get fewer benefits, go for McCain/Palin.
Jonah Goldberg (unsurprisingly) is also writing about these huge ideological divides — statism versus individualism, small government versus big government — divides that transcend personality. His starting point is by-now-very-symbolic Joe the Plumber:
Wurzelbacher symbolizes an optimistic, individualistic vision of America sorely lacking — until recently — in McCain’s rhetoric.
Barack Obama, in contrast, has offered the most rhetorically eloquent defense of collectivism since Franklin D. Roosevelt. In his biographical video at the Democratic convention, he proclaimed that in America, “one person’s struggle is all of our struggles.” In his acceptance speech, he artfully replaced the idea of the American dream with the century-old progressive nostrum of “America’s promise.”
But the two visions are in opposition: the former individualistic, the latter collectivist. We each have our own idea of the American dream. Joe the Plumber’s is to own a small plumbing company; yours might be something else entirely. In America, that’s fine, because the pursuit of happiness is an individual, not a collective, right.
Obama’s “America’s promise,” meanwhile, harkens back a century to the writings of such progressives as Herbert Croly (author of The Promise of American Life), who demonized individualism while sanctifying collective action overseen by the state. Obama often articulates a vision of government inspired by the biblical injunction to be our brother’s keeper. Few would dispute the moral message, but many disagree that such religious imperatives are best translated into tax or economic policy. (Where are the separation-of-church-and-state fetishists when you need them?) But individualists haven’t had much of a voice in McCain, at least not until last week.
I’m sure you’ll want to read the rest, which you’ll find here.
At HotAir, you can read this long, detailed and thoughtful post examining Obama’s positions on myriad issues. As you read the post, think about what I was trying to say yesterday: figure out what beliefs you hold, and then match them to the candidate. We’ve been so personality driven this election, that it’s been all too easy to say Obama = smart, dumb, honest, crooked, inspired, drab, inexperienced, etc., or Palin = savvy, idiotic, conservative, wacky, intelligent, inexperienced, experienced, etc. All these adjectives are easy to throw around, but neither adjective in this war of words (or invective) presents an honest assessment of the beliefs these two lightening rods hold.
As I said before, if your fundamental belief is that government is the answer, Obama, whether he’s smart, dumb, honest, dishonest, or whatever, is your candidate. (Although you might want to heed Biden’s warning that America will be attacked by a foreign entity and Obama’s response will challenge even the faithful.)
On the other hand, if you think government’s role is to protect Americans’ freedom as much as possible, and to step in only to police deviations from honesty, than the McCain-Palin ticket is your answer, and that’s true regardless of whether you think McCain is old, experienced, too aggressive, not aggressive enough, or whatever. Incidentally, I’d add to this that you’re a McCain-Palin kind of voter if you don’t like OPEC manipulating world oil prices to our detriment and pouring the profits into funding radical Islam around the world.
Anyway, ignore the personalities and the invective. Look at your beliefs, align them with the candidates’ records (not their rhetoric), and vote accordingly.
One other reminder: For those who are pro-Choice, but are in all other respects aligned with the McCain-Palin ticket, please don’t let that stop you from voting for them. The worst that will happen is what should have happened all along, before the dishonest Roe v. Wade opinion (and even abortion proponents concede its dishonesty): The issue will be recognized as one that is not a proper matter for federal involvement and will be returned to the States.
In blue states, it will remain entirely legal. In purple states, it will remain entirely or mostly legal. In the handful of true, blue red states, it might, might be narrowed, although it will always be available in cases of rape, incest or risk to the mother.
I know this is an important issue for conservative pro-Choicers, but don’t let it narrow your frame of reference so much that it blinds you to all the other important issues, many of which will have more and greater impact on the greatest number of Americans than abortion ever will.
I have no idea if this email, which I got from the local Republican grapevine, is true, so I offer it for whatever you think it’s worth:
I wanted to pass along something heard Saturday at a community event. As most of you may know, Zogby International is headquartered in our neck of the woods in Utica. I happened to chat with a couple of people who work for Zogby and were quite emphatic about the recent 2-3 point Obama edge. They said, did not imply, that it’s even closer. The reason? Zobgy contractually is required to poll more Democrats than Republicans. The folks who passed along this intel are strong supporters of McCain-Palin working for the very big Democrat John Zogby. They stressed that the Zogby lunch table buzz is that this is a dead heat and right now is the time that McCain can win the election.
It could just be our version of psy-ops, but who knows?
If you haven’t seen this video yet of McCain at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Dinner, you’ll enjoy it: