Sunday, August 31, 2008

Okay, you're right.

I won't call Sarah Palin any more names because the comments in yesterday's post are right. It doesn't get anyone anywhere, including me (but I'm still really mad).

As I watched the CNN special on McCain last night, I thought they did a good job showcasing his power as a politician. At one time, he might have made a fine candidate. One of the things they highlighted was his reluctance with the religious right.

Then he bows to them by picking Palin? Cementing the deal on the phone just one day before the announcement and after having met her just once? What does this say about his judgment? I wonder if McCain is really behind this choice. Also, I can't imagine McCain would have chosen Palin had she been a man. Rush Limbaugh calls her a "babe."

Alaska is enjoying a $5 billion dollar surplus courtesy in no small part to the record price of oil. Running such a state is a whole lot different than running a country with a $9.6 trillion deficit. She is very popular in Alaska, but Alaska is a singular place. Time ran a nice piece to that end.

Obama has been preparing for the Oval Office for intensely for months and in a more general sense for years. No matter what anyone believes about his experience, Obama has a profound and honest drive for the Presidency. He believes in himself. He does not smell of desperation like McCain; and he wasn't plucked from obscurity and dropped into the spotlight like Palin. He has worked hard to get where he is and in the process he beat one of the strongest political machines out there: the Clintons.

My Palin rants were not very polite, but they sparked some great discussion. Thanks to all who participated. For now, I'll leave the media machine to scrutinize Palin and throw my energy into supporting Obama.

I truly believe in him.


Helen Mansfield said...

And Erin, I'm with you 110 percent.

I will conceed that like Palin, Obama may not be ready to lead, but in retrospect, was George W. Bush? He was governor of Texas fer-cry-eye.

Still, that said, I believe Obama has earned, and deserves, a chance to lead. He will surround himself with the best minds and experts, and he will listen to their advice, and not rule with his "gut."

And anyone who claims that Palin is being unfairly picked on because she's a female -- well, stop it right there. She's being picked on because she's come off as a STUPID female ("What exactly does the V-P do?"). Hillary, though I don't care for her either, is a tough and informed cookie. Palin is anti-Hillary.

I think Obama hit the gun issue right on: There has to be a way for sportsmen to keep weapons, but there also has to be a way to keep assault weapons off the streets of ... Cleveland? Really? I think he should have said Detroit.

John Sheppard said...

Allow me to be impolite then:

And now, the President of the United States:
How’s everybody doin’? Real good I hope!
Well, it’s been a year since President McCain had his gripper during his inaugural ball. Who coulda called that one, huh? Guess anybody woulda got mad at his caterer under them circumstances.

So, I gotta tell ya, the state of the union is just super! Depression, as I’ve toldja over and over the past year, is just a state of mind. You folks should go out and buy something nice for yourselves. Todd bought me this big ol’ ring the other day. Cubic zirconium, they call it. It’s real nice and shiny! To say thanks, I made him his favorite dinner: Mashed potatoes and gravy, moose steak and an entire head of cabbage, boiled. He was real farty. Talk about your dutch ovens. Woo-eee!

Anyways, I’m here to talk about my big accomplishments and such.

Trig, stop kicking Speaker Pelosi in the knee! What have I tolya about that?

Jeez! Kids!

I think my number one accomplishment is the Jesus Is God Over America Act, which legalized hunting abortion doctors for sport. ‘Member when I shot the first one? Cool beans!

Oh, sure, some people complained. But those people aren’t down with Christ, lemme tell ya!
By the way, I think Karl Rove is a super Supreme Court Justice, don’t you?

And my husband Todd is a super Secretary of Energy, Education and Interior, doncha think? Combining those three departments has saved us tons a money. And who needs public education anyways? Did everyone get their copy of the Bible on DVD? That’s all ya need for a decent education anyhow!

And that big spill up by the National Wildlife Refuge? Well, it’s all a frozen wasteland up that way anyways. So big deal.

As I was sayin’ to that Frenchie fella, ol’ what’s his name, durin’ my first state dinner? He says to me, “Why’d ya fire your whole White House staff?” I says, “Didn’t need ‘em, fella! They just got in my way in the kitchen! Now eat your Grizzly Bear tart and shut your yap!”

Oh yeah! That’s my point. All you protesters outside tonight, complainin’ ‘bout how you’re cold and hungry and whatnot? Shut your yaps! My son Track is back from Eye-rack and his trigger finger is mighty itchy.

Good night, and God Bless America!

Erin O'Brien said...

John, Helen: You are killing me!

The Male Pig said...

USA is still the best country in the world despite Liberals.

This country was founded by self reliant, God fearing, gun nuts. Sarah Pallin fits the bill perfectly. Our founding fathers and mothers fled taxation without representation. In other words-small government. Pallin's record in government reflects this too. Big time reformer. Sometimes fighting(and beating) her own Party. READ: Change! Her Presidential opponents speak of this, but their past actions show nothing of the kind. Taxing to make a bigger bureaucracy. Not what this nation is founded upon. You should judge a person NOT by how HOT they are. Rather by their character. I think MLK said something along those lines.

And then there is the Right to Life and the Death Penalty. These issues can be decided by personal responsibility. The abortion issue can be decided by the woman by being responsible. Let's get it straight. Men are pigs. Daughters should be taught this. Sons should be warned of this. I'm a man and a father of three. Shut the legs and we have no abortion issue. Don't site cases of rape. Very small percent of abortions! Pro-Choice is birth control for the irresponsible woman. Yes, I admit it. Women have all the power!
Women's responsibility is superseeded when the baby's life starts. Babies are the truest form of innocence.
Lastly, the government doesn't want to "have thier hands" on your reproductive system. By becoming pregnant, you obviously have OK'd it with someone else already. Right?

The Death Penalty ties right in with this issue. The individual(baby at one time) has the responsibility from here on out. You personally CHOOSE to screw up I the eyes of our laws. You have choosen the right to die. Maybe you can look at it as delayed abortion.

Sincerely nice blogging.

spants said...

To The Male Pig:

"Don't site cases of rape. Very small percent of abortions!"

How do you know? Many women don't answer even basic questions about their abortions, let alone the reason why they're having one. Also, MANY rapes go unreported. I was raped as a teenager and didn't report mine.

Thankfully, I didn't get pregnant. Though according to you, it would've been all my fault for being near a man.

You know who has a lot of (secret) abortions? Women who are married to men they don't want to have any more children with. Men like you.

Dudesworthy said...

Hi Erin,

Thanks for responding!
Re-reading that comment I made earlier I think that I was being a bit preachy, so I'm sorry about that. I just think that with Obama we may have a chance to break out of the divisive two-party politics that we've had for too long.

In the 20th century we had 17 Presidents, 11 of which were Republican, so you could justifiably say that the Republican Party is the natural party of the Presidency.

If we can find a way as Democrats to really break down the old left / right division (something like what Bill Clinton talked about the Third Way) maybe we can claim that role in the 21st century, but I think that in order to achieve this we have to recognise the viewpoints of Republican voters and find answers to them.

Cappy said...

Ha ha. I win. With Palin I get Tina Fey, but without the arrogant/condescending/vegetarian/thirdworldie/peacenik/whydotheyhateus BS.

Meanwhile, of course, you liberals are still stuck with Jimmy DiMora, and he's still stuck with his fat face in a bucket of KFC.

Dudesworthy said...

I think for the death penalty we have to ask ourselves where do we want our nation to stand in the world?

Last year the United States executed 42 people. This puts the US in 5th place in the league table, exceeded only by Pakistan (135), Saudi Arabia (143), Iran (317) and China (470).

Other nations that executed people in 2007 include: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Botswana, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Iraq, Japan, Kuwait, Libya, North Korea, Singapore, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Vietnam, and the Yemen.

Notice that there are no European democracies on that list, it is a condition of joining the EU that a nation must abolish the death penalty. I would also point out that there are no South American or Caribbean countries in the list.

By continuing to hold on to this archaic punishment the US has set itself apart from western civilisation. Liberty is not a fixed concept; it changes. There was a time when it included slavery. There was a time when the western concept of liberty included the death penalty. It does not include it any more.

So we have to choose where we want to be. Do we want to stand with totalitarian oppressive regimes or do we want to stand with our fellow democracies?

Helen Mansfield said...

Dude, I appreciate your comments, but I just don't know.

I am one of those weird Democrats who is pro-death penalty when it comes to acts of treason, serial killers, serial pedophiles, and any sociopath who has committed habitual crimes of any kind -- these people are unable to develop empathy, so there is no way to rehabilitate them. Until someone creates an "iCare" pill, chemistry is what makes these people what they are.

I don't know what the answer is. The death penalty does't decrease violent behavior, but prisons don't rehabilitate prisoners.

Dudesworthy said...

Hi Helen.

I get where you are coming from, I used to have a similar opinion.

We have these people who commit terrible crimes in our nation, do we really want them to be part of our society?

The problem is, as you say, that the death penalty doesn't decrease violent behavior, in other words, it doesn't work. Why continue to do something that isn't working? There are plenty of other democracies without the death penalty, and while they still have all these crimes, they don't have any more of them than the US does.

The thing that changed my mind was that I was discussing execution methods with someone who strongly supported it. I argued that the current execution methods (like gas chambers, the electric chair, lethal injection etc...) are painful and that, if we are going to kill people, we should do it in the most humane way possible, such as nitrogen asphyxiation. This is the method used by scientists to kill lab animals for autopsy. The animal is made to breathe pure nitrogen gas so that no oxygen reaches the brain. The advantage of this is that the victim simply becomes unconscious and then dies painlessly.

The person I was arguing with said that this was terrible; that the murderer should feel pain as they caused pain for others. And that's when I realized that the death penalty is not about protecting society or dealing justice, it is about revenge. It is my belief that as a society we should not endorse revenge. We have to be better than that.

swine said...

To Mr. Pig: please be a bit more thoughtful in your analyses and stop making irresponsible, absolute statements such as: "the USA is the best country..." There is no best political system anywhere. There hasn't yet been one. Legend has it that the citizens of Atlantis ended up self-destructing in a civil war, and so...there's that Utopian dogma flushed down the toilet for you. As long as Man (with a capital M) is involved or has a hand in anything, we can be sure it will eventually fail or cannibalize itself.

Your declaration of "shut the legs and we have no abortion issue" will make even the most staunch conservative shudder at its glib motivation. Sadly, sir, you are highlighting your biases and support for status quo through more than just poor spelling ("cite," for example instead of "site," but I do realize it's an unfair shot at language--despite the fact that I had to learn it as an immigrant at age 11.) Your statement regarding abortion (or the supposed eradication of the issue) is on par with Nancy Reagan's "Just Say No" mantra of the 80s. How's that War on Drugs working out for this country? Also, rape cases, sir, are much under-reported, as the commenter above me already outlined. And even if, let's say, you were right regarding percentages, why would those women deserve to be left to fall through the cracks of the system? There seems to be very little compassion coming out of the conservative side, and much aggression and attacks punctuated by name-calling (peaceniks, hippies, etc.); it reminds me of the block-headed 5th grade bully at my elementary school who ended up being left behind several years while his tooth-grinding, flinching victims went on to complete a good, public school education.

Conservative by definition is resisting change; tending or disposed to maintain existing views, conditions, or institutions and working/fighting to maintain status quo. Stagnation doesn't breed innovation or movement. Personally, I wish to live in a country always in flux, always looking to move into the future, always looking at progressive, viable ideas (economic, social, political, etc.). Old, white, establishment men fighting fiercely to hold their esteemed positions in the Country Club aren't keen on moving a nation anywhere but backwards.

momentofchoice said...

as a non-u.s. citizen, i've been watching this political process with great interest over the last year and have become addicted to c-span, the blogosphere and various mainstream and alternative media outlets. i'm now more aware of how government functions (or doesn't) in the u.s. than where i was born. and i'm continually amazed (amused) by discussions between the ultimate decision-makers--the voters...and a glaring lack of concern for anyone but the self, and lack of willingness to listen to one another, to find common ground, to see or admit to hypocrisy, to recognize that everyone is just as responsible for bringing into this world and raising the murderers, molesters and rapists as they are the victims of these crimes, as they are the educators, innovators and change-agents.

as a human being and citizen of the world, i don't feel allegiance to any one political party or country but feel responsible to the human race and the planet on which we live. i am not perfect and expect that no one is, but imagine many people think they are. i see that many people think they have the right to make choices on behalf of other people as evidenced by the death penalty or inhibiting a woman's right to choose. i actually feel that we have the responsibility to make choices on behalf of those who cannot make a choice. specifically our children. more specifically, those who are not choosing to be here in the first place and were not thoughtfully and intentionally brought into this world, but instead were the result of a rape, or the actions of a misguided and uneducated teenager, or "insert reason here". i don't understand why an unborn fetus that could become a human being should be used as punishment to another human being who, for whatever reason, was not prepared to raise a human being. how is that fair to the unborn...?

i don't think women make the decision to have an abortion with ease. if anything, having to make that decision in the first place, is punishment enough, but more importantly is a sign of taking responsibility if they are not in a position to raise another human being. let's not take the role of raising children lightly and expect as too many people do, that anyone can and should attempt to raise children. and for victims of violent sex crimes - dear male pig, what are the options for a teenager walking down the street on her way to church who gets pulled into a car and raped by a stranger, and becomes pregnant because she doesn't take birth control pills? why punish the teenager, her family and another potential human? and why is it ok to ignore that apparently small percentage?

many seem to lack the ability to make the connection between self and realize that everything we do or do not do has an impact on others and in turn, on us. that we cannot function alone in this world, that we rely on other human beings to exist. i hear arguments against wanting to pay for health care to ensure everyone has access to prevention and treatment because people feel they are not responsible for anyone else but themselves, that they work harder than their neighbour. it would be nice to see people show equal compassion for those that are teaching their children, or cleaning their toilets, or handpicking their food, or leading their country.

support the death penalty to weed out the bad DNA? murderers and rapists are not alien monsters from another planet. they are products of how humans raise and support and educate and treat other humans. they are quite possibly the result of an unintentional pregnancy from a mother that was not allowed to terminate because someone else decided she should be punished for getting pregnant in the first place. they are most definitely an example of how not to treat fellow human beings. but that comes in many forms.

sorry Erin, who's blog is this? :) i realize i'm jumping all over the place in my incredulity. i'll wrap up by saying i would love if voters choose to educate themselves with an open mind, with respect for all human beings, as they decide who will set the best example, lead and take action in the interest of humankind and the planet. i'll go back to dreamland now.

garrett said...

Hi Erin:

Thanks for your thoughts.

I hope if Obama gets elected, and if his policies are implemented, and if that results in pain and suffering for Americans (which I predict), you will read through Ron Paul's book "The Revolution" (if you haven't already) and consider spending some of your energies supporting liberty.

I love you.