Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Obama The Post Turtle

You may have read the one about Barack Obama as a post turtle recently on one of the political blogs. If not the tale goes something like this:

While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75-year-old Texas rancher whose hand was caught in a gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually the topic got around to Obama and his bid to be our President.

The old rancher said, “Well, ya know, Obama is a “post turtle.”

Not being familiar with the term, the doctor asked him what a “post turtle” was.

The old rancher said, “When you’re driving down a country road and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that’s a “post turtle”.

The old rancher saw a puzzled look on the doctor’s face, so he continued to explain. “You know he didn’t get up there by himself, he doesn’t belong up there, he doesn’t know what to do while he is up there, and you just wonder what kind of a dumb ass put him up there.”

This tale has been used for years to describe politicians in the U.S. and Canada including President George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and others. However, it is equally appropriate to describe the rapid ascent of and also to provide the definitive case against Barack Obama as President of the United States.

You Know He Did Not Get Up There By Himself

In Obama's case, that is exactly the case. Obama attended Columbia University, by all accounts a left-leaning Ivy League institution full of anti-establishment liberal professors, and had plenty of help. Admittedly, Obama was a student of limited means. He was raised by a single mother living part-time with his grandparents. So just how did a bi-racial kid from a single parent family get into the prestigious Columbia University?

According to sources, Obama received student loans to attend Columbia where he laid the foundation for his future associations. In his autobiography, "Dreams From My Father," Obama said his "affinity" for Marxists began when he attended Occidental College in Los Angeles:

"To avoid being mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully," the Democratic presidential candidate wrote in his memoir, "Dreams From My Father." "The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists." Obama also described this time period as one where he sought out the radical professors and began his belief in redistributive policy in government.

After graduation from Columbia, Obama moved to Chicago and began work as a Community Organizer in poor, African-American neighborhoods. After four years in Chicago, he went to Harvard Law School. How did he get into another prestigious Ivy League school? According to sources, Obama received a letter of reference from former Manhattan Borough president Percy Sutton. Mr. Sutton told a New York cable channel that a former business partner who was “raising money” for Obama had approached him in 1988 to help Obama get into Harvard Law School.

In the interview, Sutton says he first heard of Obama about twenty years ago from Khalid Al-Mansour, a Black Muslim and Black Nationalist who was a “mentor” to the founders of the Black Panther party at the time the party was founded in the early 1960s. Sutton described al-Mansour as advisor to “one of the world’s richest men,” Saudi prince Alwaleed bin Talal.
Prince Alwaleed catapulted to fame in the United States after the September 11 attacks, when New York mayor Rudy Guiliani refused his $10 million check to help rebuild Manhattan, because the Saudi prince hinted publicly that America's pro-Israel policies were to blame for the attacks.

A videotaped recently aired by Fox News shows Mr. Al-Mansour spewing anti-white venom and saying "white people deserved the worst you could give them."

From Harvard, Obama moved back to Chicago and went to work as an attorney in the same law firm whose namesake partner was chief counsel for Mayor Harold Washington, Chicago's first African-American mayor. This is the same law firm where Obama worked for ACORN, the controversial community organizing outfit that has recently been linked with accusations of voter fraud. While in Chicago Obama sought out the unrepentant terrorist William Ayers to jumpstart his political career from his living room. He interviewed prospective pastors and eventually chose the Reverend Jeremiah Wright an activist African-American with a world view espousing the anti-American rhetoric of Black Liberation Theology. And he chose the recently convicted slumlord Tony Rezko to raise money, help buy the lot next to his house on the very same day his home closed at below market price and receive political guidance. Oh and don't forget Rashid Khalidi who has made news again recently based upon Obama's presence at a dinner with Khalidi that appeared in April in the The Los Angeles Times. Khalidi is a pro-Palestinian rights supporter and former professor at the University of Chicago and currently Professor of Arab Studies at Columbia University. He is a former spokeman for the PLO with anti-Israel leanings.

It was in Chicago that Obama cultivated his relationships with these leftist-leaning political allies who welcomed him into the Chicago political machine, gave him financial support as a fledgling political candidate and groomed him as their next political messiah.

He Doesn't Belong Up There

In Obama's case, it could not be more true. He has barely served four years in the U.S. Senate. Prior to that, Obama served as an Illinois State Senator and ran unsuccessfully as a U.S. Representative.

He has little experience in the Senate other than working on one bi-partisan bill with Republican Richard Lugar to eradicate post-Cold War nuclear weapons caches. Hardly a controversial issue. In fact, Obama has not one time stood against his own party or ever chaired a committee.

He has a socialist philosophy, learned at Columbia and honed at Harvard, to "spread the wealth around" as he told Joe the Plumber in his Ohio driveway. He wants to raise taxes on all Americans who earn over $150,000 a year and give "tax refunds" to millions of Americans who currently pay no taxes.

He wants to raise the capital gains tax and penalize American entrepreneurship.

He has no foreign policy experience and even his running mate Joe Biden recently warned supporters at a fundraiser that "mark my words" the U.S. will be tested by a manufactured international crisis to test President Obama.

He wants to increase the size of government and provide mandatory health care to all Americans. He has proposed almost $1 billion in additional spending as part of his overall plan.

He recently admitted the one Supreme Court Justice appointment he opposed was that of Clarence Thomas, the lone African-American justice, who just happens to be a pro-life conservative.

And, he opposed the surge in Iraq which he voted against and was a strong proponent of a premature withdrawal of our troops that if approved would have raised the white flag of surrender.

He Doesn't Know What to Do While He is Up There

Senator Obama gives a good speech. He is charismatic, well-educated and smart. And, he has run a well-organized and strategic campaign. However, a good candidate does not make a good President.

Senator Obama is a relatively political unknown. He has few if any close allies in the Senate. In fact, he has spent half of his time in the Senate running for President.

So we really have no idea what a President Obama will do once in the Oval Office based upon his past record. In fact, former Senator Tom Daschle of South Dakota recently claimed in a PBS documentary that he strongly urged Senator Obama to run for the Presidency because he had no record that opponents could use against him!

And, further illustrating the lack of information available on Barack Obama, Peter Nicholas of the pro-Obama Los Angeles Times reported yesterday that, "Both impressions came from a distance. A cordon of aides ensures nothing more intimate is available to the traveling press."

Although we do not know what a President Obama will do as President based upon his Senate record, we do know who he has chosen to associate with during his past political experiences. Men like the terrorist William Ayers, the anti-American spewing Reverend Jeremiah Wright, convicted slumlord Tony Rezko and the Pro-Palestinian supporter Rashid Khalidi.

Yes, men like Colin Powell have recently endorsed Barack Obama. However, coming as late in the campaign as it did, the endorsement rang hollow and was more politically expedient and cleansing for Powell than helpful to Obama.

You Just Wonder What Kind of Dumb Ass Put Him Up There

This one is easy. The American voter will be responsible for this one if they vote for Barack Obama next Tuesday.

The choice has never been clearer. John McCain is the only candidate who has fought for his country and has a stellar 25 year career serving the U.S. through some of the most tumultuous times in our history. He is an authentic man who has proven experience as a straight-talker who will fight for America and is ready to lead on day one.

John McCain is the right choice for America for Peace, Prosperity and Reform.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Say Hello to My Little Friend

In the final scene of the 1983 Brian DePalma film "Scarface," Al Pacino's character "Tony Montana" utters one of the most famous lines in movie history: "Say Hello to My Little Friend." The line was in response to the Bolivian commandos who were storming his house and the impending use of his M-16 grenade launcher he was about to blast through the door in one valiant last stand to save his life.

As the election enters its' final week, the apparent symbolism of Tony Montana's brave last act contrasts nicely with the predicament Senator John McCain appears to find himself against Barack Obama. Trailing in nearly all polls, McCain appears to be down to his last stand against Senator Obama. Having run the "Joe the Plumber" theme into the ground the last 10 days, continual attacks on Obama's William Ayers ties and hope for a resurgence in key battleground states, McCain seems to be down to the wire without much left in the tank and little movement in the polls.

Here's Jeremiah....

However, just when it appears McCain has run out of new themes to use against his democratic rival, there is a big one still lurking on the fringes that just might save his campaign--Reverend Jeremiah Wright. Yes, the same Reverend Wright who splashed onto the national scene last spring during the Democratic Primary campaign against Hillary Clinton. You remember Wright. He was the reverend at a Southside Chicago church. The same church Barack Obama was a member for 20 years. Reverend Wright came under fire for his fiery anti-U.S., anti-white and anti-establishment rhetoric from the pulpit (See my previous post from March.) Obama initially ignored the association when pressed by the media but eventually distanced himself from the ongoing controversy and finally resigned his membership in the church when the uproar would not die.

It was a speech delivered with usual applomb that Obama delivered saying he "could no more distance himself from Reverend Wright than he could his white grandmother." The speech was important and seemed to put the issue behind him as he held on against a furious comeback by Hillary Clinton to win the Democratic nomination. However, Clinton was gaining momentum in the key states needed to win the nomination at the height of the Reverend Wright controversy. She beat Obama decisively in West Virginia and in Pennsylvania. Both of these states have large white voting blocks that were sensitive to the Wright issue. These are the same voters Obama said "were bitter" and "cling to their guns and religion" in a fundraising speech in San Francisco earlier in the campaign.

Now, six months later, John McCain finds himself in a similar situation. Trailing in virtually all polls, McCain is faced with the decision whether to unleash the Wright issue on the American public in hopes of casting doubt on Obama and pulling past him in the final days. So far, McCain has taken the high road and kept the Wright issue at bay in deference to his core beliefs against negative campaigning. However, in the final days needing a come-from-behind victory, he may not have a choice if he wants to win the Presidency.

In the third and final debate, Senator McCain himself quoted Senator Clinton in saying the issue of William Ayers goes to Senator Obama's character and judgment and should be addressed. However, he has not considered the Wright issue in a similar vain presumably because of the religious ties. However, it is just as significant to Senator Obama's character and judgment as the Ayers issue. Yes, it is politically more risky and the left-leaning main stream media will jump all over McCain for using it, but it is the only issue left that has any potential to cast further doubt on Obama as voters head to the polls next Tuesday.

John McCain is a man of honor and a war hero. He has been a stalwart in the U.S. Senate for 21 years and served four more in the U.S. House of Representatives. He has a stellar career serving our country through some very tumultuous times and a great case to be our next President that is being obscured by an unforeseen economic crisis (he was leading Obama prior to the financial collapse.) He should feel no guilt by raising another legitimate issue against his opponent who has used every other issue against him.

The election outcome hangs in the balance of McCain's decision.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

It Ain't Over Til It's Over

The beloved baseball philosopher Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra infamously said "it ain't over til it's over" in 1973 during a losing streak by his New York Mets, who trailed the Chicago Cubs by 9-1/2 games in the final months of the pennant race, when asked about his teams chances of a comeback. Don't count John McCain out just yet, either.

I know. The most recent 39 state polls show Barack Obama with a commanding 273 electoral vote lead. If the election were held today, Obama would win every state John Kerry won in 2004 plus Republican strongholds in Iowa, Colorado and New Mexico. Ball game.

However, the problem with that math is that the election is still 28 days away. And, although the liberal media is already rubbing in the Obama annointing oil, the junior Senator from Illinois has never been comfortable holding a lead thus far in this election campaign. Couldn't do it in the final months of the Democratic primary against Hillary Clinton. She clobbered him in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.

And he couldn't do it against John McCain this summer when every reputable talking-head political pundit on television surmised he should have been up by at least 10 if not 20 percentage points.

On the flip side, Senator McCain seems to revel in being the underdog. His campaign was given up for dead last year in September when his relentless passion for victory with honor in Iraq seemed to be hopeless. Defeated, broke and given up on by the political establishment, Senator McCain did what every old soldier does when the chips are down. He pulled himself up by his bootstraps and threw conventional wisdom to the wind and took his message to the folks. And guess what? The surge began working, suddenly McCain's cause did not seem so hopeless and he stormed back through the field of Republican challengers to secure the nomination in March.

Once again, Senator McCain finds himself in a tough spot. He has lost his post-convention bounce and now trails in virtually every reputable poll. Senator Obama's lead has recently been anywhere from 5% to 9% nationwide. However, look a bit closer and you will see the lead diminishing just as every national election tightens. Today's polls show Senator McCain trailing by as few as 1% in several polls. He still trails in the overall electoral map math but this election will be won district by district not via national polls or by the expressed opinion of the elite liberal media.

And, for the millions of McCain supporters, there are several significant advantages which favor John McCain:

History on His Side

The most famous example of this come-from-behind strategy occured in the 1948 Presidential election. The incumbent President Harry S. Truman was anywhere from 5% to 15% behind on election day to Republican challenger Thomas E. Dewey. Heck, even the elite liberal media declared him the winner when Life magazine ran a pre-election magazine cover story declaring Dewey "The Next President of the United States."

However, instead of capitulating to the doom and gloom forecast, Harry Truman dug in and took his message directly to the folks. And guess what? Truman scored the biggest upset in Presidential election history when he defeated Dewey by 4% of the vote. The front page photograph of a victorious Truman holding the Chicago Daily Tribune on election night declaring his opponents victory is one of the most recognizable photos in the history of presidential politics and serves as a strong motivational tool for every political underdog in the country.

The Bradley Effect

Tom Bradley was the five-term mayor of Los Angeles from 1973 to 1993. In fact, Bradley was not only just mayor but the first and only black mayor of Los Angeles and served for the longest term in office of any mayor in Los Angeles history. After several reelections, Bradley decided to run for Governor of California in 1982 against Republican George Deukmejian.

After a long, tough campaign Bradley led his Republican opponent in most polls heading into election day. And, in fact, several major news organizations declared Bradley the winner within minutes of the polls closing. However, a funny thing happened when California voters emerged from the voting booth. Many of those voters who told pollsters of their intent to vote for Bradley prior to the election, did the exact opposite on election day. The result: Bradley lost by 1.2%, or less than 100,000 votes, to his Republican opponent.

The racial dynamics that appeared to undermine his narrow and unexpected loss gave rise to the political term "The Bradley Effect." This term refers to a tendency of white voters to tell interviewers or pollsters that they are undecided or likely to vote for a black candidate then actually vote for his opponent.

The Times We Live In

These are dangerous times. We live in a world of uncertainty in our financial markets and uncertainty abroad. We are on the verge of the most significant financial crisis of our history and the most dangerous period of international affairs since the end of World War II.

In times like these, historically, Americans have chosen on the side of caution and experience in their national leaders. And, in most of these situations they have chosen Republican candidates to lead us through harm's way. As I mentioned in one of my earlier posts, Republicans have won the Presidency seven of the past ten elections in the last 40 years. We have had Republican leadership in the White House for 28 of the those 40 years. And, both Democratic victories came during relatively peaceful times.


The 300-pound elephant in the room this election is the race card. I realize it is politically incorrect to mention this subject but it is true and has yet to rear its' ugly head. But just wait.

We can expect this race to get nasty in the final 28 days. Very nasty. And the lead plank of the nastiness will be the race card. Don't expect it to come from the McCain camp. Heck, Senator McCain even passed on the William Ayers and other radical Obama associations angle during last night's debate in deference to honor and civil discourse (focus group respondents also have overwhelmingly showed their distaste when either candidate goes negative and that had some impact as well.)

However, the fact that Barack Obama is black will definitely be a considerable factor in this election in the final days. This single issue will be much more impactful on the final results than a roomful of William Ayers', Reverend Jeremiah Wright's and Tony Rezko's combined.

It is a sad testament to our society that race will become the single largest issue affecting the outcome of this election but it will and is unavoidable. This is the first time an African-American has run for President of the United States. As much as we would like the outcome to be decided by a frank discussion on the issues, race will rear its' ugly head and will ultimately choose our next President.

2000 and 2004

The past two Presidential elections have come down to one state: Florida in 2000 and Ohio in 2004. And despite all the rhetoric and slogans, the electoral map for this election is basically settling into the same mold.

This race will be decided in a handful of states: Nevada, Ohio, Florida, Iowa, and Colorado. All Republican states in 2004 and in which Obama leads in virtually every poll in these crucial "swing" states.

There is still time for John McCain to get his message of Peace, Prosperity and Reform through to these folks before election day.


So sit back and hang on. The last 28 days will be a wild ride. Expect the unexpected. Expect the race to tighten. In a "change" election year, the Democrats have the advantage and lead in the polls, conventional punditry wisdom, have the support of the women of The View and Tina Fay on Saturday Night Live and the lead in the ever important electoral map. Just the type of scenario a fiesty Maverick from Arizona likes.

Oh and by the way. Yogi Berra's 1973 Amazin' Mets rallied to overcome that 9-1/2 game deficit and won the National League pennant on the next-to-last day of the season.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Commander in Chief

The old Navy pilot put a little whupass on the neophyte junior Senator from Illinois in last nights first televised Presidential debate at the University of Mississippi in Oxford.

John McCain was firm, in command and showed the leadership that goes with the territory of serving our country the past 27 years in the United States Congress. He controlled the debate from the beginning, put his opponent on the defensive the entire evening and showed the greater gravitas as the night wore on. In fact, Senator McCain so dominated the debate that his opponent Mr. Obama stated that John McCain was right or he agreed with the Senator on eight separate occasions.

To the contrary, Senator McCain retorted to Mr. Obama on numerous occasions that he either did not get it or didn't understand the issue at hand. From the reckless spending in Washington, the Surge in Iraq to the nuances of the tribal regions in Pakistan, Senator McCain took his opponent to the woodshed. In the final analysis, while Senator McCain looked and sounded every bit Presidential and ready to lead, his opponent appeared as he has all along, heavily scripted and without the experience to have a firm grasp of world or domestic affairs.

While John McCain relentlessly pounded home his principles of reducing spending, cutting taxes and winning with honor in Iraq, Mr. Obama continued to tick off his unending spending programs, his misunderstanding of our economy and lack of foreign policy experience. Mr. Obama was on the defensive all night because Senator McCain kept pounding his principle-led points. This is what happens in a debate when principled leadership combats a lightweight wannabe.

Senator McCain won the debate last night because he was the aggressor who inflicted the most damage on his opponent with his principled ideas and points. Mr. Obama was on the defensive all night long responding to Mr. McCain's attacks. The bottom line is who do you feel most comfortable handling our economy and world affairs? A tough, former Navy pilot who looks into Vladimir Putin's eyes and sees "KGB" or a lightweight one term Senator who refers to his Vice Presidential running mate to vouch for his foreign policy experience?

In the end, McCain supporters loved the performance of the old man last night and Obama supporters loved the performance of their candidate, as well. However, for the millions of undecided voters looking on last night, there was only one candidate whose principled ideas and experience grew stronger and became more evident as the night wore on--Senator John McCain.

Round two is Tuesday, October 7 in Tennessee. Expect the distance to continue to grow further between the principled, experienced leader and his not-ready-for-prime time opponent. John McCain is ready to lead right now by putting his Country First with Reform, Prosperity and Peace.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Real Leadership for America

The Maverick John McCain has struck again with his bold decision today to suspend his campaign and proposal to reschedule Friday nights Presidential Debate in Oxford, Mississippi so he can return to Washington to work to solve the looming financial crisis.

This decision is a bold and risky one that only John McCain could present to the American people. It is also predictable for the McCain camp which has proven effectively adept at throwing conventional wisdow aside when the interests of the country and his campaign are considered. Consider the following decisions by John McCain during the current campaign:

a. John McCain proposed the current Surge Strategy in Iraq when his Democratic opponent was calling for an immediate troop withdrawal.

b. John McCain rebuked conventional wisdom in selecting his Vice Presidential running mate by choosing a little-known Governor from a small state in Sarah Palin.

Both decisions were unpopular at the time but turned out to be crystal clear with time that John McCain made the right decision for America and his campaign.

Political pundits have questioned Mr. McCain's decision-making ability time and time again only to be rebuked by the correctness of his bold leadership. The Surge worked and was overwhelmingly successful in reversing the results on the ground in Iraq. Today, no one is questioning the success of the Surge. Even his Democratic challenger admitted as such in recent television interviews with Bill O'Reilly on Fox News' "The O'Reilly Factor." And, despite the liberal media and his opponents, the selection of Sarah Palin as his Vice Presidential running mate has reaped positive reviews in the polls as well as with middle American voters.

Now, John McCain has once again struck with bold leadership by putting aside his political aspirations to suspend his campaign, return to Washington to lead the effort to solve the current financial bail out in Congress and put America's real issues above his political considerations. Sure, the decision is risky but John McCain has once again struck with bold, decisive leadership to solve America's problems.

By doing so, McCain has once again struck while the iron was hot, trusted his judgment and instinct and put his Presidential aspirations on the line. However, on second glance McCain's decision is not that unpredictable. John McCain has fostered a career in Washington in bucking conventional wisdom with bold, decisive leadership. His McCain-Feingold bipartisan bill to reform campaign finance still holds water in today's political environment. His support of the Surge in Iraq was brilliant and is being proven more correct every day by events on the ground in Iraq. And, his surprise selection of Sarah Palin has emboldened his campaign, reinvigorated the Conservative base of his party and put his Democratic opponent on the defensive.

Now, John McCain has once again put his personal goals aside for the betterment of America with his decision to suspend his campaign in the fourth quarter of the election to return to Washington to solve the financial crisis. However, every good tactician knows that when faced with obstacles to strike at your opponents strength to negate their assumed superiority. Here are several sports analogies to show John McCain's tactical strategy:

a. In the 1968 World Series, the Detroit Tigers were behind 3 games to 1 to the defending World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals. The Tigers were clueless in two of those losses to the Cardinals right-handed phenom Bob Gibson who established a World Series record 17 strikeouts in his Game 1 victory. Both Gibson victories came against Tiger ace Denny McClain in games 1 and 4. Gibson and McClain had combined for 53 victories and 19 shut outs during the regular season so many expected a final showdown in Game 7, if necessary. However, the scrappy Tigers were able to punch out a couple of victories at home in Detroit to set-up the climatic Game 7 showdown in St. Louis. What did the Tigers do in Game 7? Instead of predictably using their ace McClain for the game 7 showdown, the Tigers used their ace in Game 6 for a victory over a slew of Cardinal pitchers. Instead of McClain, they sent their crafty left-hander Mickey Lolich up against the invincible Gibson in Game 7 on only two days rest. Even though Lolich had beaten the Cardinals in Games 2 and 5, no one in baseball circles gave the Tigers any chance in Game 7 against the powerful Gibson. However, the decision to send Lolich back to the mound on a short rest to face Gibson and the Cardinals in St. Louis proved miraculous. Lolich had confounded the St. Louis hitters in Games 2 and 5 and did it again in Game 7 cementing the Tigers remarkable comeback to win the World Series. This bold decision effectively negated the supposed Cardinals strength with one of their own. Score one for the underdog.

b. In the infamous "Rumble in the Jungle" in Zaire, Africa in 1974, virtually no boxing aficionados gave former Heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali any chance of defeating the current champ George Foreman. Foreman was younger, bigger and stronger than Ali and had the edge leading into the fight. However, the crafty Ali employed his infamous "Rope-A-Dope" strategy against his younger, bigger and stronger opponent. A bobbing Ali leaned against the rubbery ropes and stretched back as far as he could. Foreman's thundering right hands harmlessly glanced off of Ali's forearms or wildly missed altogether. The results are etched in history as Ali's controversial strategy effectively negated his opponents strength and rendered him futile, frustrated and out of gas by the time the eighth round rolled around. The result was vintage Ali who put together a powerful flurry of unanswered punches to knock out his insurmountable opponent.

c. And just recently, the New York Giants employed a blitzing strategy against Tom Brady and the undefeated New England Patriots to end the Pats record-breaking undefeated run. The Giants unleashed their underdog defense to put constant pressure on the seemingly untouchable Brady to render the miraculous upset. Once again, a seemingly inferior opponent did not run when faced with overwhelming strength but countered their opponents' strength with some of their own.

Each of these sports analogies have one thing in common with the McCain decision. The '68 Tigers, Muhammad Ali and the New York Giants attacked their opponents perceived strength head-on and defeated their insurmountable opponent. After enjoying a surge of his own following his Palin decision, John McCain has recently been trailing his Democratic opponent on the heals of the recent economic crisis. McCain has been perceived as weak on the economy even by his own admission on the campaign trail. Now, by striking while the iron is hot, McCain has once again taken the leadership position away from his Democratic opponent with bold, decisive leadership.

The next 24 hours will prove critical to the current financial crisis. McCain has gambled his entire campaign on the fact that his decision to return to Washington to work with Congressional leaders to solve the current financial crisis will effectively remove the perceived strength of his Democratic opponent. McCain has 24 hours to work in a bi-partisan fashion to hammer out a compromise bill that solves the current impasse. He can then ride in on his white horse to Oxford and tell the world he has solved the financial crisis with bold, decisive leadership. Meanwhile, his opponent looks indecisive, ineffective and un-Presidential with his decision not to join John McCain in Washington.

Conventional wisdom says "no way" John McCain is a no-show on Friday night at the first Presidential debate. However, John McCain has staked his entire campaign on his decision to put America first over his own personal political pursuit. Stay tuned for more developments but my hunch is the Maverick John McCain will once again prevail with bold, decisive leadership for America.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Real Change For America

McCain Palin--The Right Choice For America

The Maverick Presidential candidate earned his non-conformist stripes yesterday with a bold (albeit risky,) blockbuster, historic selection of an unknown, Governor of a small state as his Vice Presidential selection. Oh, did I mention she is a woman?

Republican Presidential candidate John McCain's choice of Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin shocked the political punditry, experts in his own party and the Governor's own parents with his selection he announced yesterday before 15,000 boisterous supporters in Dayton, Ohio. And the last part of this description is probably the most important reason McCain chose the unknown Palin as his running mate. She has created instant excitement and interest in a campaign that would have been hard-pressed to capture anything short of the typical "Rich Old White Boys" country-club atmosphere at Monday's Republican National Convention in St. Paul.

In a presidential year where "Change" is unquestioningly favoring the Democrats, the Palin selection gives the McCain camp its' only real hope at victory. Any other mainstream selection such as the heir apparent Mitt Romney, another no-name Governor in Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota, abortion rights supporter Tom Ridge or another Maverick pick such as close McCain ally Joe Lieberman would have sealed defeat on November 4. Yes, Palin is risky but so were these other mainstream choices that others pushed so hard to be included on the ticket. Republicans cannot affort to run another generic Presidential campaign with the same rich, old white men ticket and expect victory in November against the Obama-Biden ticket.

And despite what the respected, Pulitzer Prize award-winning Washington Post columnist and Fox News Contributor, Charles Krauthammer called "suicidal" yesterday, Sarah Palin's selection is hardly the death knell he suggests. Yes, the McCain camp should be commended for waking up and running a tactically brilliant campaign the past 6 or 7 weeks. Yes, their efforts kept this campaign effectively even through the Democratic convention when the Obama-Biden 'Change ticket should have been up 20 points or more. However, history has proven that however brilliant the McCain camp could be, in a "Change Election Year", change always wins over experience, i.e., George W. Bush in 2000, Bill Clinton in 1992, Jimmy Carter in 1976 and John F. Kennedy in 1960.

So with the perspective of 24 hours for this news to sink in, here is why Sarah Palin is the right choice and represents the best chance for Republican victory this year:

1. She is a young, fresh face that instantly injects interest, enthusiasm and excitement into the ticket and immediately gives the Republicans a new leader on the national stage for the future.
2. She is a "hockey mom" from a western state who represents traditional family values that the core Christian conservative base was so desperately demanding.
3. Her historic selection as the first woman V.P. selection from the Republican party effectively eliminates the "Change" mantra from the Obama-Biden ticket.
4. She gives the undecided woman "swing voters" (most of whom are undecided) who will ultimately decided this election a reason to consider a McCain-Palin ticket.

That's it. There are other minor issues but these four are the main reasons McCain ventured down the Maverick Highway for his selection.

The beauty and brilliance of this selection cannot be summed up any better than the vitriolic, immediate response from the Obama-Biden campaign which descibed Palin as "having zero foreign policy experience," criticized her position on abortion and said she would just continue the unpopular policies of President Bush.

Realizing their mistake attacking the first woman Republican V.P. candidate with a charge that more applicably fits their leader, calmer heads within the Obama-Biden campaign later issued an immediate about face congratulatory release. Obama himself even called the Governor directly to congratulate her. Obama brushed asided reporters questioning the harsh response by saying political campaigns often have "hair-trigger" responses to issues. Regardless of the conflicting messages, I'll take the first response as the one with the most relevance. Palin's selection scared the daylights out of the Obama disciples within his campaign because her presence just took their "Change" mantra off the table.

Of course, such a bold decision is not without risks. But let's examine the Democats', and their acolytes within the liberal press, main arguments against the Palin selection and the impact they will have on this election:

1. Her inexperience wipes away the McCain camps main challenge to Obama that his inexperience makes him unqualified to be President.
2. She is not qualified to deal with Foreign Affairs.
3. Joe Biden will eat her lunch at the upcoming V.P. Debate.
4. She is the Governor of a small state who is not used to the limelight of the national media and has the potential to wilt in front of the forthcoming onslaught.
5. Oh, did I mention that she has not even been on "Meet the Press." Seriously, this point was raised as a vote against.

The experience argument is a weak one simply because the Republican's chose to place their inexperienced candidate on the bottom of the ticket. John McCain is the Presidential candidate whose qualifications for President are unquestioned. In contrast, the Democrats have placed their inexperienced candidate on the top of their ticket. Big difference that the McCain camp will have little trouble deflecting.

There is no question that Sarah Palin is no heavyweight when it comes to Foreign Affairs outside of her expertise with energy and her efforts to open up the Alaskan Wilderness for drilling. However, how much impact will she have on shaping a McCain administrations' foreign affairs policy? Will she be charged with negotiating peace accords with North Korea, Iraq? Will she be asked to deal with Iran? Will she be asked to look into Vladimir Putin's eyes in the ongoing staredown over Georgia and breakaway territories? No. These duties will be handled elsewhere in the McCain administration by his much-anticipated and experienced Foreign Policy team. If Dan Quayle, an unknown Senator from Indiana, can be Vice President, then don't worry about Sarah Palin.

I am sure that Joe Biden is licking his chops at his opportunity to clean Palin's chops at the upcoming Vice Presidential debate. However, the fact that people are talking about Biden and his experience even further illustrates how unbalanced the Democratic ticket really is. Palin was 9-years old when Biden entered the Senate in 1973. He is a career-Washington "insider" who is on the wrong side of Palin on several key issues--abortion, taxes and big government. Can he really face a 44-year old "hockey mom" from a Western state and attack her as inexperienced because he represents the "Change" America needs? Based upon her first performance yesterday in Dayton, Palin will do just fine against Biden in a V.P. debate. Besides, when is the last time a V.P. debate had any impact on a Presidential election? Lloyd Bentsen's famous line "Senator, you are no Jack Kennedy," to Dan Quayle in 1988 was funny even to Republicans but had no affect on the election outcome.

Yes their are political risks throwing a relative lightweight political newbie into the teeth of a national Presidential election 67-days before election day. The 24/7 focus, three hour news cycle today demands much from our political candidates. In a world where every word, every look and every nuance is debated ad-nauseam, Sarah Palin is fair game to the viciousness of a partisan Presidential campaign. However, the same case can be made for the off-the-cuff, short-tempered Joe Biden who has put his foot in his mouth more times than he cares to remember under the national spotlight of presidential politics. He is just as susceptible to a major gaffe or embarrassment to Barack Obama as an inexperienced Sarah Palin is to John McCain.

The fact that Sarah Palin has not appeared on "Meet the Press" is symbolic of the Washington-insiders and mainstream media's overstated importance to the election of an American President. Who cares if Sarah Palin has never appeared on "Meet the Press?" She will have plenty of opportunities to make her case to the American voters over the next 67-days.

So there you have it. A bold, historic, risky choice of Sarah Palin has wiped the slate clean three days prior to the Republican National Convention in St. Paul. Her announcement effectively erased any "Halo effect" from the Obama acceptance speech on Thursday and removes the "Change" mantra from beneath the Obama-Biden campaign. Risky, yes. Necessary, absolutely.

Game on!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Change at What Price?

"My friends, we live in the greatest nation in the history of the world. I hope you'll join with me as we try to change it."

-- Barack Obama

Oops. The balloon is leaking. The fairy-tale that "Ground Hog" Slick Willie warned us about in February is unravelling. Yes, Dorothy, we are definitely not in Kansas anymore.

Call it whatever you want but the "Change We Can Believe In" message is not the message of "Hope" we were led to believe. No Pollyanna this message of Hope is really a message of Hate. Of Anger. Of Racial discord. Of Anti-Americanism.

It may have taken a bit longer than some predicted, but the Barack Obama facade has finally been revealed. Oh, we're not talking about holding a man accountable for statements of his pastor. And, we're not saying a man should be convicted of "guilt by association" as some have defended the Illinois Senator. And, we're really not saying we should not take Mr. Obama at his word. We're just saying...if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and sounds like a duck. Well?

The recent revelations by Fox News and ABC News of racial rhetoric in sermons made by Barack Obama's pastor and spiritual advisor Reverend Jeremiah Wright have put the Democratic Presidential contenders' Presidential hopes in doubt. Serious doubt. This is not a partisan attack on a marginal political issue. This issue strikes at the very heart of Barack Obama's DNA. By his own admission, a man he calls "Uncle," the man he holds in great respect, the man who is a close friend of Reverend Louis Farrakhan, the man who married him and his "I have never been proud to be an American" wife Michelle, the man who baptised his children, the man who served on his African-American Spiritual Advisory committee, the man whose sermon "The Audacity of Hope" so moved Mr. Obama that it became the centerpiece of his campaign and the title of his own autobiography, the man who has preached at the church he has been a member and attended for 20 years has been outed. Outed big-time. We're talking Eliot Spitzer-Client #9-like:"Yes, I did have sex with that woman. Five large ones, too!", outed.

Oh, I know not everyone thinks it is a big deal. The Keith Olbermann faction of BMSNBC" (Barack-MSNBC) has been deflecting the story the past 48-hours. However, as hard as the liberal media tries to spin it, this ship has sailed. You can just look at the individuals who have taken to the airwaves to defend Obama. The Reverend Al Sharpton quickly spun the story to talk about "degrees of standards" we will measure all politicians. He made quick comparisons to men of the cloth who have endorsed Republican Presidential candidate John McCain. Sorry, Mr. Sharpton. You can't save this sinking ship with your off-kilter rhetoric any faster than you can say Tawana Brawley. Your candidate has already seen to that with his own rhetoric on national television last night.

Even an African-American syndicated radio host, Larry Elder, finds Mr. Obama's story hard to believe.“How can Barack Obama dis-invite him … and now claim he had no idea that Jeremiah Wright made all these incendiary comments? It doesn’t work,” Elder told FOX News.

You see, it really does not matter that Reverend Wright said America deserved the 9-11 attacks as retribution for dropping the Atomic bomb on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. No, it really does not matter that Reverend Wright said that the United States government was responsible for HIV and was run by rich, white men whose purpose was to keep the black man down. And, as absurd as it sounds, it really does not matter that Reverend Wright said "God Bless America" should be replaced with "God Damn America." (He said all those things from the pulpit of the Trinity United Church of Christ that Barack Obama has been a member the past 20 years.)

You see what really matters is what Mr. Obama said last night on Fox News, CNN and MSNBC during his quick appearances to deflect the uproar. He defended his pastor. I know, he denounced his comments but he defended his spiritual advisor and his "Uncle." He even went as far as to say on national television that you had to understand where Reverend Wright was coming from. He was a Vietnam veteran who was still fighting the war of the 1960's and while he found his comments "appalling" that he was not aware of the hateful rhetoric Reverend Wright has been espousing.

Seriously. He said he had not been in church when these inflammatory comments were made. Incredulously he said that if he had heard them, he would have quit the church. Would have removed him from his campaign long before last night had he "known" about these comments. Ok, we can take Mr. Obama at his word on this one. But don't you think in this 24/7, blogging news cycle that somewhere, someone has a microphone from one of those sermons? A recording with a date. Perhaps that date can be tied back to Mr. Obama's presence in the church? Maybe.

But it really does not matter whether Mr. Obama's fall-on-his sword denial comes back to bite him. The toothpaste is already out of the tube. The helium is out of the balloon. The train has left the station. The curtain has been revealed on the Wizard of Oz. The emperor has no clothes.

Yes, Mr. Obama. Words do matter. Yours and your pastors' have just sunk your campaign faster than you can say "Turn Out the Lights. The Party's Over."