Tag Archives: RNC

John “Moody” McCain and the Very Bad, No Good Week.

I have an intense girl-crush on Rachel Maddow. I’m woman enough to admit this publicly. She’s smart, she gets politics better than quite a few of her male counterparts, she does irony very well…all these things add up to one savvy, sexy lady. Last Friday night, she summed up Sen. McCain’s bad week very succinctly:

From “The fundamentals of our economy are strong,” to Carla Fiorino, to asserting he would fire the SEC chairman if he were president (Constitutionally impossible), to Sarah Palin calling it a Palin/McCain administration to his handlers saying John McCain invented the Blackberry …. the John McCain camp just couldn’t seem to open their mouths without their feet jumping up into them.

This has to be frustrating for the senator from Arizona. He was FINALLY getting some love from the evangelicals, Barack Obama was finally on the defensive, and the base was PUMPED, BABY! Republican bloggers were claiming victory, life was sweet. And then….

What happened, John? Can ya tell us? “Stupid economy. Stupid George f*%$in’ Bush. Stupid congress. Can’t keep the damn country running til November. Now I have to actually talk ISSUES, instead of just pointing at my babe-alicious running mate and calling liberals stupid. This election may actually be work.” John failed to grumble, but was probably thinking.

Poor guy. Gotta feel for him. On the other hand….I’m not an heiress. I don’t own 7 houses. And I work for a living. For now.

See, the thing is…no matter WHO ends up in the White House come January 23rd 2009…we’re in trouble. We better stop caring about the distractions and start caring about what’s really important fairly soon. And from what I’ve seen so far this past week? John McCain isn’t prepared to deal with it. This past week is what our next president will be dealing with for probably their entire administration. How can we trust a man whose first response is not “how do we fix it?” but “who can I fire for it?”

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Why Palin is All You Hear About, or Is That You, Karl?

Has anyone noticed that we’re not really hearing from or about John McCain anymore? Just his “handlers.” We don’t really know what his campaign is about; everyone is too wrapped up in all the juicy details and lies about his supposedly “fiscally conservative” running mate. Can it be you’re not wondering why yet?

The answer is fairly simple. Karl “Fart Blossom” Rove, Machiavellian slimeball extraordinaire, is playing no small part in the McCain campaign. As I predicted back when he “retired”, there was simply no way the man would be able to stop himself from returning for the presidential race. Rove is many things; stupid is not one of them. He’s well aware that the best way to lose this election would be to allow John McCain to run on the issues. What he needed was a running mate. One who could capture the heart of the American conservative base (aka: sheeple) while reeling in some of the disenfranchised middle. Enter Sarah Palin.

Really, it was a stroke of brilliance on Rove’s part, one which woke me up to the fact that McCain has now completely abandoned his core principles. There is no way John McCain would have harped about Barack Obama’s lack of experience for months and months and then turned around and chosen someone so completely lacking themselves. But John McCain is no longer calling the shots. In desperation, he swallowed what was left of his pride and turned to the man who, with lies and distortions, torpedoed his 2000 presidential run.

In return, Rove has delivered. I’ll say this for the man, he knows what people want. An uplifting, heartwarming story. A pretty, plucky small town girl working her way up from beauty queen to reporter to politician, all while raising a family (the Down’s Syndrome kid must’ve been what sold it). Make sure she’s an outsider, so the “maverick” label will stick. Any character flaws or issues can be waved away as “sexism,” thanks to Hillary, or “elitism” thanks to Pat Robertson.

As a result, we have been concentrating on Sarah Palin. Who won’t even be president, should she and McCain be elected. John McCain has sold out every standard and principle he once held for himself and himself alone. He has aligned himself with the people he once denounced, although those people have not changed.

Let us be clear. Karl Rove does not care about the country, about the people his candidates claim to want to help, or about ethics, responsible government or transparency. Karl Rove couldn’t bring himself to care about anything but winning.The fact that the evangelical base has forgotten all about the false promises of Rove of 2000 and 2004 (remember way back to 2006? Y’all weren’t all that happy with the man.) and have duped themselves into believing it all over again. Fool me once, shame on you…fool me 200 or so times, just shoot me, I’m too stupid to live. The fact that these same people are actually lining up to be fooled says something about the American right that I don’t even like to look at too long for fear it’ll rub off.

If Barack Obama has been paying attention at all for the past eight years (and I have to assume he has, although you never know), he will NOT underestimate the depths to which Karl Rove will sink. And he’s going to have to do something that, thus far, he has tried to stay above. He’s going to have to fight fire with fire. It’s going to be ugly, it’s going to get very, VERY dirty. But no less than the fate of our country hangs in the balance. And in the end…Karl Rove needs to be tried for treason.

Bristol’s Decision or: Republicans stumble over the word “Choice”

So naturally, as an avowed Commie Socialist atheist liberal pig dog, I watch the Daily Show as often as I can. Well. Ordinarily I tivo it and watch it at some point over the weekend when I’m not running the kids around or cleaning the house or plotting the downfall of civilization as we know it by daring to vote Democrat. Last night, though, since I was up talking to the television during the RNC, I stayed up the extra half hour to watch Jon Stewart.

Ordinarily, I am not a big Samantha Bee fan; she ends up annoying me. But her last few segments have had me rolling, and I’m hoping the writers can keep coming up with the biting satire they’ve been writing for her lately.  Last night in particular had me grinning from ear to ear. On the convention floor, Samantha was interviewing attendees, asking them what they thought about the whole Bristol issue. Many of them said that, while it was an unfortunate incident, it was “a decision made privately, by the family.” I began to smile as Samantha asked each one “Hmmm….decision….she made her own DECISION… y’know…there’s another word…for decision…option? No…that’s not it….what IS that word…?” And hemmed over it more as each conventioneer got obviously more and more uncomfortable about the big hypocritical elephant in the living room. Finally one said “Um…choice?” “YES!” Samantha yelled. “That’s it. Choice. It was her choice.” The young lady then said (and I swear I laughed harder at this line than any Jon Stewart delivered) “well…yeah, but… y’know…’freedom of choice’ isn’t exactly the same thing as ‘pro choice.’ ” And she was SERIOUS!

(Clip here)

I was absolutely floored. Here’s this entire delegation who understands and supports the idea that getting married and having that baby is not only a private, family matter, but Bristol’s choice, and hers alone. And THEN had the balls to say it isn’t the same thing as being pro-choice. There I sat, my ghast totally flabbered. The darling man (who was raised in Texas and understands these things far better than a simple California girl like me) smiled at me rather gently and said “honey…they really do think ‘pro choice’ is a euphemism for ‘pro abortion’.”

I goggled at him. I blustered. What twaddle! NO ONE is pro-abortion! I’ve worked at Planned Parenthood; that’s not the motto! When we say “pro choice,” we really do MEAN….it’s your choice! Totally up to you! Bristol wants to have her baby. That’s great! SHE made that choice. Had she decided to keep it quiet, not tell anyone and given it up for adoption? ALSO great, and also totally up to her. Had she not told anyone, had an abortion, and gone on with her life? Guess what. That’s her choice, too.

The fact that people at the RNC supported that, on camera and on the record, should be screamed from the rooftops. The fact that it was the Daily Show and not a “hard news” program just means people were relaxed enough to say what they actually meant.  Republicans DO support a woman’s right to choose. Giving women that choice does not automatically follow that the choice they make will be the one with which their values disagree.

John McCain whines about the Ebil Librul Media(tm)

In a statement earlier, the McCain campaign accused…you guessed it! … the liberal media of bias. Yes. I nearly fainted of shock myself. BBC news reports on the statement:

Ahead of the address, a written statement from senior campaign adviser Steve Schmidt said the “nonsense” over the vetting process for Mrs Palin should end.

“This vetting controversy is a faux media scandal designed to destroy the first female Republican nominee for vice president of the United States who has never been a part of the old boys’ network that has come to dominate the news establishment of this country,” the statement said.

Mr Schmidt said there would be “no further comment about our long and thorough process” in checking Mrs Palin.

Well….perhaps just a bit more, Mr. Schmidt. You go take your Lexapro. I’ll take over from here.

Gov. Palin has barely scratched the surface of withstanding a “media scandal.” Compared to the women she’s trying to emulate…Geraldine Ferraro and Hillary Clinton….she’s pretty much been handed the keys to the city. The firestorm is not coming from the mass media. It’s coming from the internet. From liberal bloggers (yes, like me) and alternative news sources. From Jon Stewart and NPR and journalists that usually don’t get much attention.

Mr. Schmidt, you should be a good enough student of human nature to know that the more you try to cover something up, the more people are going to want to know. Sure, some will come off as conspiracy theorists, but some will be asking rational questions. And those rational questions will persist until answered.

As it turns out, prior reports of the lack of vetting of the Republican VP candidate were in error. Not for lack of investigation on the mass media’s or blogosphere’s part; plenty of informational requests were made. No, the vetting process was kept intentionally quiet because of the company that did the actual vetting on behalf of John McCain.

The Council for National Policy is an ultra-right wing networking group formed by religious nutball Tim LaHaye, author of the Left Behind books and Christian extremist extraordinaire. Not only was Gov. Palin vetted by this group, she was found to be the perfect VP candidate. That’s right! Religion deciding on national policy. They just do it behind the scenes now, where they think we can’t find out about it.

The group’s committee is comprised of such members as Donald Paul Hodel, former president of the Christian Coalition and T Kenneth Cribb, Jr.; both men who believe creationism should not just be taught as a theory equal to evolution, but should supplant it.

Per the NY Times, the group is so secretive, one of their rules is that: “The media should not know when or where we meet or who takes part in our programs, before or after a meeting.” No wonder these people want to legislate the internet to the point that people only see what the government thinks they should see. The Freedom of Information Act must make them twitch.

This, then, is the group that vetted Sarah Palin. A group that is not just religious, but ultra religious…in order to put forward a candidate who will forward their agenda. In a way, this is almost as bad as no vetting at all. And this is the woman that the Council for National Policy and John McCain are trying to pass off as a surrogate for disenfranchised Hillary Clinton voters. Everything that is the antithesis of the principles for which Hillary Clinton has fought. Can we now agree that, no matter what Sen. McCain’s ad says, no, it is NOT okay for Hillary voters to vote for him?

FBI plants informants, conducts raids on protesters.

After all the exposed graft, corruption, lies and scandal….the outgoing administration has still not learned their lesson.

In a progressively excessive chain of events, it has come to light that the FBI has planted several informers and pre-emptively arrested protesters on the suspicion of being liberal. These protesters were, indeed, planning on protesting the RNC. They had not committed any crime. Yet there is an attitude of “they deserve it!” among the general populace…that protesting, once considered a right more sacrosanct than our right to semi-automatic weapons, SHOULD be rewarded with detention and imprisonment.

If these people had committed a crime…that would be different. They would be charged, and I would agree that charging them was within reasonable action. But they didn’t. They disagreed with actions taken by our government and planned to protest to that government to redress grievances. That, my fellow citizens, is not just our right. It is our responsibility as Americans. And that we are now so programmed to see any vocal civil action against our government is not just sad….it’s scary as hell.

Are we really turning into such sheeple that the most we’ll do when unhappy is sit and whine behind the privacy of our computers? And how long til even that isn’t safe? Til the government petitions groups like Google and Yahoo and Time Warner to release private information about subscrib…..oh. That’s right. That’s already happened. And yet we do nothing.

Will the RNC accept Sarah Palin?

Whether John McCain is aware of it or not, he has painted himself and the RNC into a corner with his choice of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.

On the face of it, the choice in and of itself makes no political sense beyond “get the women voters.” But Hillary Clinton supporters who may have swung McCain (other than those who were Republican to begin with) will likely find little in common between Clinton and Palin other than their gender. Obama will not be afraid to use Hillary to point that out.  Nor will they take much convincing, if this morning’s USA Today poll is anything to go by.

John McCain is 72 years old. This is a concern, and one that the RNC has worked hard to keep voters from focusing on too hard. Do Republicans really want the “one heart beat away” person to be a 44 year old beauty queen whose experience consists of two years of governing a low population state with next to no foreign policy experience? After making such a case about Obama’s lack of the same?

It smacks of pandering and gimmicky politics. The Republicans are trying to win this race on substance, saying that Obama is nothing more than flash. How can they possibly spin the Sarah Palin choice as anything but all style no substance?

It was  a rush choice to counteract Biden. Sen. McCain’s “vetting process” consisted of a phone call last Sunday afternoon and a two hour interview with Palin in person on Thursday, then announcing on Friday morning. He knows little more about her than we do. He obviously wasn’t aware of “Troopergate”, as it’s now being called (and for the love of all that’s holy….can we PLEASE drop the “gate” off every scandal that comes along? It originated because it was the second half of a hotel name, not a ‘gate’ to a scandal!), because if he did, I’m not sure he would’ve made the choice he did make. It seems as though it was a rush to get SOMEONE on the ticket before the RNC and to counteract the big noise made by Joe Biden.

If all of these points lead the RNC to reject Sarah Palin as a viable candidate for VP…McCain will be forced to recant his nom and choose someone more appropriate. This will hurt both the party and his electability. John McCain has taken a huge gamble on his VP pick.   

Feminism, Republican style

Say what you will about John McCain’s splashy VP choice; she’s not the “safe” pick. While pundits and insiders were whispering names like Romney, Huckabee and Ridge, no one expected the little known, still wet behind the ears governor of Alaska,  Sarah Palin.

There are those among the punditry who are saying that it’s an effort to reach disenfranchised Hillary supporters. They’re right. Where they’re wrong is assuming it will work. Here’s why:

While I respect John McCain’s willingness to go for the unknown quantity in his pick, I have to wonder at his reasoning. His campaign has been hammering at Obama’s “lack of experience” since day one. So his choice of running mate surprised me, to say the least. Considering he’s 72 years old as of today, Sarah Palin taking over as president because of McCain’s death is a very real possibility, should they get elected. Does experience only matter if you’re elected POTUS, as opposed to inheriting the job?

Although she shows a very strong ethical track record (and I DO applaud that), she has had precisely 2 years experience as governor of a remote state with a population of 670,000 (smaller than some US cities) whose chief economic concern is….you guessed it! OIL! Add to this the lowest conviction rate and highest per capita rate of rapes of any US state, no foreign policy dealings, the fact that Sarah is firmly anti-choice, and her own rather shady history (see article), I have to wonder…. Does John McCain really believe that Hillary’s base is so stupid? That they’ll be taken in that easily? That any strong woman with a loud voice will do? If so, then Sen. Obama was precisely right last night. John McCain just doesn’t get it.

Women who voted for Hillary did so not just because she’s a woman (although  I won’t lie; for a lot of women it did factor in). Women who voted for Hill did so because Hillary shares their values. John McCain seems to be under the impression that any pair of x chromosomes in high heels fits that bill. Frankly, I’m insulted. And I encouraged the League of Women voters in an email to express to Mr. McCain just how condescending and out of touch his attitude toward women really is. The days of dangling something shiny in front of a woman to get her favor are long past. Mr. McCain, I’m embarrassed on your behalf.