Friday, September 05, 2008

Sarah Barracuda

I've never looooooved Barack Obama during this long campaign season. In fact, I rather disliked him during his primary contests against Hillary. (One debate moment stood out in my mind, when Hillary angrily said something like, "You've been talking about change, but I've been WORKING for change for 35 years!" Amen, Sister. Same thing when Hillary made the point during a press conference that both she and John McCain had experience, but Obama had... a speech he made in 2002.)

After Obama won the contest, I was convinced I was going to vote for him. I'd heard silly reports on the news that "feminists" were "disgruntled" and were going to go over to McCain's side because they felt that Hillary had been disrespected. I never felt that she had been disrespected. I did feel the loss was IFFY---Close as it was, for instance, had it been 1984, the Party Regulars would have wrangled the Super Delegate votes for Hillary, and she would have been the nominee. (In '84, Gary Hart won late big-delegate contests like California; he could have been a contender had not the party tamped him down.)

Though I'm a Hillary fan, I was still ready to get on the Obama Bandwagon, especially after last week's convention spectacle. Obama's speech, in particular, was more than "just" a spectacle. I listened aptly. I got chills. Yes, things DO need to change...

And then came the following week's announcement of Sarah Palin as John McCain's vice presidential nominee... Upon first attention, I thought, "I absolutely hate this 'hockey mom' shit. She's just another Dan Quayle. What in the hell was John McCain thinking?" And I hated even worse what I thought was going to be the inane focus on family: "She's a mom! With a SPECIAL NEEDS child!" And then came the pregnant daughter news, which made me recoil even more: "This is a fucking white trash nightmare---how much worse can you get? A retarded kid AND a knocked-up teenager? Jesus H. Christ, I do NOT want to have to listen to her cutesy 'And here are my kids Trig, Trap, Snatch, Patch, Snig, Snog, and Boogely' for the next 2 months!"

Luckily, her speech Thursday night at the Republican Convention wasn't cutesy or stupid for more than, oh, 30 seconds or so. After the "My husband is World Champion of...glkfhlsjkhdflk," (what the fuck? snow-mobiling or something?), she got into her main points: "Barack Obama authored 2 memoirs, but never a single piece of legislation." And the fact that, even as mayor of a tiny town in Alaska (Wasilla, 9,000), she still had to make more actual decisions than Obama ever had to make. (She also wondered aloud what exactly a "community organizer" did. I watched an MSNBC doc on Obama that touted his "community organizing" skills. From what I garnered from the program, his sole accomplishment was that he called attention to asbestos in one apartment complex. And then when it took 3 years to get the problem fixed, he got discouraged and decided to go back to law school.)

Listening to Palin's speech made me embarrassed for both Barack Obama and myself (for supporting him). The guy voted "Present" (rather than "Yea" or "Nay") an embarrassing number of times while both in the Illinois State Senate and in the US Senate. Obviously trying to protect himself and avoid any clear-cut stance that would come to haunt him in a later campaign. As the attack-dog Giuliani also pointed out in his speech Thursday, an executive has to be able to make tough decisions. Voting "Present" to protect one's political hide and appease potential voters isn't anywhere near good or bold enough.

In short, listening to Palin made me understand that the woman was hands-on INVOLVED in her community. She'd grown up there. She became a member of the town's PTA, tried for the city council, tried for mayor... Later tried for governor of the entire state.

What, on the other hand, did Obama ever do for his community? Travelled briefly through the "South Side of Chicago" before deciding to ditch the struggle and go to Harvard? (Then, after Harvard, upon coming back to Chicago, he won his State Senate seat by getting his opponent---a black woman, a supposed friend and mentor of his, and a longtime member of the community---kicked off the ballot on a technicality.)

Barack Obama has not earned a thing. (He has, on the other hand, FINAGLED and talked his way into quite a few things.) Hillary tried to argue this point, but she was hampered by the fact that she herself had only come to prominence as a result of her husband.

Sarah Palin, brief as her career thus far has been, is a self-made woman. And her arguments for John McCain (and watching McCain's convention speech tonight) made me re-evaluate what I thought was my solid support for a Democrat (any Democrat) this year.

Aside from McCain's unmatched physical service to our country, he actually does also have a long legislative history as a senator, working with Democrats Feingold and Lieberman, among others, on issues of campaign finance reform, immigration reform, judicial reform. He didn't always get his way, but the man TRIED, in an ongoing nonpartisan way. Not in "sexy" fields assured to garner press attention, but rather, for the sake of good government.

It took Palin and her convention speech to shake me out of my "of course I'm voting for Obama, I've always voted Democrat" lethargy and to make me THINK for a second.

(My old friend Ginny, who loved Heart, would also love the fact that the Republicans played "Barracuda" at their convention, in honor of Palin. Hi, Gin!) :)


C. L. DeMedeiros said...

keep dreaming it's good for your heart

Beth Austin said...

Huh?? "Keep dreaming" in WHAT sense??

CA said...

Oh dear, not you too, dont let this 10 cent floozy reel you in as well. Seriously, Sarah Palin is nothing more than a shiny fishing lure for the Republican party. And its not about anything to do with her soccer mom image and all that other B.S. they're trying to play up about her. She is COMPLETELY right wing from A to Z, and for one, a complete hypocrite when it comes to "A for Abstinence". Which is of course what she favors, during her tenure in office she had safe-sex courses restricted in schools in leau of the right's "abstinence only" policy...and look at where that got the daughter! where was Sarah Palin, being such an active family values proponent that she is, while her daughter was running around having unsafe sex and whose myspace photos (before they were taken down) showed her getting boozed up and practically stripping at parties...and yet the daughter shows up at that convention all angelic and well dressed behind her mother acting discreet and conservative now with the guy (where on his own myspace said he dosent even want kids, before it was taken down) who also didnt have the clear sense to have safe sex or even abstain himself.

And with that clear example that the "abstinence only" policy doesnt work (as many professionals have said in the past) Palin STILL maintains its the Only way and that she would work to continue the spread of that. She's running around telling everyone else what to do but didnt even take the time to enforce that in her own home. But of course she tries to divert attention away from that, we're supposed to honor her and her family's "privacy" yet if this was any other Democratic or liberal family in that situation the Republicans would have torn them apart in the media. We all know that because they've never honored any democrats private family situations in the past, and while she wants her family left "out of politics" she's completely okay with touting her son who's going to iraq so publicly to further her political image. My friend recently put it in perspective when he said she's "conservative's wet dream."

Hilary Clinton she is certainly not, Hilary had more sensible stances and views for the better good and Hilary, even in her hippie days, had more class than this tacky bear skinning bitch. You dont see Chelsea tied down now with an accident baby because her mother never said anything more than abstinence, she's now an independent young lady with her own job and life, her parents gave her the right views on life and a good path to follow. On the other hand we know where Bristol Palin is going to be at Chelsea's age - Divorced from this shot gun marriage with kids and no greater education or job living off her parents aid, the typical trashy early married-due-to-an-accidental-pregnancy life.

But all seriousness, what did Palins celebrity convention speech really say? she was reading a pre-written speech made by another party member and never diverted from it once, aside from attacking Obama and the democrats every other line, and touting that she's conservative AND someone who can bring change (even though conservative and change are oxymoron’s) what issues did she actually talk about? what did she say that was anything of true substance that would effect us? and what has she said since then? so far its been nothing but pre-planned appearances (nearly all with McCain, to rub off the celebrity shine) and spin-off speeches of the convention one, Jo Biden on the other hand has been out there on the campaign trail on his own and talking about REAL issues both domestic and international, he's also standing up for pro-choice women even though his own catholic church is condemning him for doing it. Sarah Palins church runs "pray away the gay" conversion programs, and you know she's never spoken out against them during her time with the church. Dont buy into the glitz and help bring in yet another dark cloud of the ridged conservatism that we already had to deal with for 8 years.

Here's story thats starting to detail more about the real 1 dimensional Sarah Palin: