Sarah Palin: Day Two

After having a day to absorb the Palin news, I find myself even more thrilled by this brilliant, brilliant choice. That’s somewhat surprising to me, as usually this kind of thing fades with time. But the more I think about Sarah Palin as veep, the more I like it, especially because of the reactions it’s generating from the opposition.

Here are my favorites:

1. “She’s inexperienced! She’s inexperienced! She’s inexperienced!”

That’s the battle cry of the Obamaites who are frothing at the mouth, supposedly aghast due to the neophytism of McCain’s second in command. “Boy, this takes away McCain’s inexperience argument!” they hiss, pretending to be deeply concerned that such a political newcomer could be a heartbeat away from the presidency.

If you think about this for two seconds, it exposes just how intellectually bankrupt this argument is.

Experience matters, doesn’t it, Obambites? So how, then, do you explain that your number one guy has less of it than McCain’s number two? The Almighty Obama had been in the U.S. Senate for about a year before running for president full time. Prior to that, he’d been a state legislator and a “community organizer” – he’s never had a lick of executive experience. Indeed, Sarah Palin is the only person on either ticket who’s been a chief executive of anything. To paraphrase Jesse Jackson, Obama’s never run anything but his mouth.

By throwing all their eggs in the experience basket, the Obama camp is forced to concede that experience matters, and pretty soon, someone’s going to notice that the guy at the top of their ticket doesn’t have any. In comparing Palin to Obama, Palin wins hands down. And when you realize that Palin is only auditioning for Apprentice Prez and Obama’s the guy in charge, you suddenly discover which ticket has the dangerously thin resume.

2. “It’s tokenism!”

Oh, gosh. You really want to go there, Obama? You really think that you’d be the Democratic nominee if your father were a white guy from Kentucky instead of Kenya and your name was Seymour Glutz?

This is just a variation on the inexperience argument, but it again highlights Obama’s own weaknesses. And while there’s no doubt her gender is generating excitement, it’s not what’s got the conservative base fired up. Had McCain tapped Kay Bailey Hutchison or Olympia Snowe, most of the GOP would be up in arms.

A few people have been stupid enough to compare this to the Harriet Myers pick, ignoring the fact that it was conservatives who forced Bush to withdraw a manifestly unqualified token candidate. Those same conservatives are embracing Palin wholeheartedly. The GOP just doesn’t do tokenism the way the Democrats do – and have done with the Obama nomination.


Go read the Huffington Post or the Daily Kos and see what the lefty consensus is. To say they’re furious is to say that Michael Moore is somewhat portly. They can’t contain their white-hot rage. They’re all quick to say what a disaster this is for McCain and how it guarantees he’ll lose, but they’re just whistling past the graveyard. They also compare this to the Quayle pick, yet they’re not responding the way they did to Quayle. They actually loved the Quayle pick; it allowed them to mock the GOP openly. Palin has more substance and grit; she’s not as easy a target. They’re not ridiculing her; they’re just spitting at her.

They’d be far less exercised if McCain had really put his foot in it. Their fury is a sure sign that Beavis has finally done something right.

On Palin

I wanted Mitt. But I have to concede that she’s an excellent choice. Conservative, fiesty, female – and, most importantly, fiercely pro-ANWR drilling. Hopefully, that’s a sign that McCain may actually be moving in the right direction on that one. After trying to come to terms with Pawlenty, a milquetoast, nothing, Mitt-lite choice, Palin seems like a breath of fresh air.

I may not be voting for Jacques Cousteau after all.

Obama’s Speech

It was a good speech.

No, it was a great speech.

That’s no surprise, as giving great speeches is Obama’s stock in trade. And, thankfully, I didn’t watch or hear any Gore crap from earlier today. Obama was all I got.

Initial thoughts: it was surprisingly conservative-sounding in places. If you were born yesterday, it would be hard to ignore the power and the hope and the inspiration of Obama’s vision for the future.

But I was born forty years ago. And I remember everything.

Unlike Obama, I know that a government big enough to give me everything he promised tonight will also be big enough to take everything I have. “Free” health care. “Free” tuition. “Free” job security. “Free” retirement benefits. These aren’t new, fresh ideas, Barack – they’ve been tried before.

They don’t work.

So keep your freebies, Mr. Obama.

I prefer freedom.

Veep Watch: Romney’s Out

It’s not reflected in InTrade, but it’s being reported by the RealClearPolitics Veep Watch as follows:

A well-placed source has confirmed that Mitt Romney no longer understands himself to be in consideration for the Republican nomination for Vice President. When asked where he’ll be tomorrow, Romney revealed that he planned to be in Massachusetts. When pressed for a clarification — as to whether that remark constituted an artful prevarication — Romney declared that it did not. Further, one of Romney’s senior advisors has verified that if he put it thus, it’s true.

Pawlenty’s cleared his schedule for the next few days.


Veep Watch: I spoke too soon!

Tim Pawlenty’s stock is soaring on InTrade and Romney’s has plummeted. Romney’s still higher, though – he’s at 48, whereas Pawlenty is at 41. That’s about a twenty-point shift for each candidate – Romney down, Pawlenty up. Drudge is announcing that Pawlenty has canceled all his public appearances, and the story about Romney’s security sweep is explained by the fact that McCain will be coming to Michigan, where Romney will act as a surrogate.

I should have known that Beavis wouldn’t do something I’d like. In the long run, it means that Romney’s got a viable political future, but here and now, it means that I’m back to Cousteau.

A Free Country

Veep Watch: Smart Money’s On Mitt. He’s been trading above 70% on InTrade all day, the day that McCain has announced that he’s picked his guy. Roll Call says there’s been a security sweep on the Romney family. I have no inside info, but I’m betting it’s Mitt.

And if it’s Mitt, I’ll vote for McCain. Sorry, Jacques.

I’m caving because the Dems are so loathsome this time around. This convention is seriously bumming me out. I heard pieces of Joe Biden’s speech on the radio last night – it was astonishing. This is the worst economy EVER! (Except today’s numbers show it grew at a rate of 3.3% last quarter.) America does NOTHING to give people a hand up! (Except for hundreds of billions in stimulus checks and a multi-trillion dollar bailout of Fannie and Freddie Mac.)

“Compassion” is defined as “governmental redistribution of wealth.” It’s all so much piffle. Expensive, totalitarian piffle, sure, but piffle nonetheless.

It reminds me of a story when I was a missionary in Scotland. A British elder told me of a greenie companion he had who, fresh from the States, spent about a week getting his bearing before making an observation.

“I dunno. This country seems pretty free,” he said.

This made my British friend laugh. Apparently, this kid believed all his life that America was the only free country in the world. Yet it begs the question – what is a free country? Freedom, it seems, is more easily identified in its absence. Some countries – Cuba comes to mind – are literally prisons – you can’t come and go as you please, and everything you do is subject to government monitoring and approval. But what about the Scots? Are they free? Sure, Britain protects free speech and free assembly, but at the time this missionary made his pronouncement, the UK was taxing every dollar earned above $70,000 at a 98% tax rate. Are you free if you’re not capable of managing your own property?

And where does that leave us?

The Book of Mormon recounts the story of King Limhi, described as being in “bondage” to the Lamanites because his people are forced to cough up “a tribute to the Lamanites of one half of all they possessed.” (Mosiah 19:22)

“And now, is not this grievous to be borne?” the King asks rhetorically. “And is not this, our affliction, great?”

Between federal, state, and local taxes, including property tax, sales tax, and everything else, a fifty-percent tax rate looks like a bargain today.

Obama’s more concerned with fairness than he is with freedom. The two concepts, however, are often mutually exclusive, especially when Washington gets involved. To make things fair, you have to make someone else a little less free. That was the case in Scotland, where rich and poor alike lived in dumpy council houses owned by the government.

Fairness can’t lift up the losers, so it tears down the winners. I prefer freedom.

Incidentally, when I was 11, I entered a songwriting contest with a song about freedom. I can only remember one stanza, because it’s so laughably awful that I ought to share it with you.

If our freedom were taken away
Tomorrow or some other day
In our death beds we would lay
Unhappy evermore.

Remarkably, I didn’t win. That’s because back then, this country was more free and less fair – you actually had to achieve to get recognition.

I think those who lay in their deathbeds are probably unhappy, though. Especially if they’re laying eggs.