Sunday, October 12, 2008

The McCain/Palin Commitment to The Bush Doctrine.

What an amazing day John McCain had Friday. He finally confronted a couple of his (or Sarah Palin's?) rabid followers at a "Town Hall" style rally in Minnesota. Surely you've seen the video by now? He's officially set the record straight. For one thing, he finally admitted that his opponent is not an "Arab". That is remarkable. Now all he has to do is share that information with his staff. Apparently they haven't been sure about Obama. Is he some kind of "Manchurian Candidate"? Is he a "socialist"? Does he "pal around with terrorists"? Those have been the messages for (at least) the last week, and it was starting to get really ugly among the "faithful". The secret service even had to investigate a possible threat against Obama's life.

Now we don't have to ask ourselves "Who is Obama?" anymore. Because John McCain has found one of the last vestiges of honor and dignity buried beneath his capitulation to the basest elements of the GOP. If anyone brings up Barack Obama's character to you, you can simply quote McCain: "I have to tell you, he is a decent person and a person that you do not have to be scared of as president of the United States." You know, if McCain wasn't running against Obama for president, I'd have to say that this was an endorsement. Or... how about "I admire Senator Obama and his accomplishments"? That sounds unequivocal. Even when he got back on the attack, he sounded kind of moderate- "He's a decent family man, a citizen who I just happen to have serious differences with on fundamental questions."

But what you have to ask yourself is why did McCain wait so long to tell the truth? Why did he give in to the tactics of Karl Rove-protégé Steve Schmidt? Did he forget what he famously said about negative ads during his failed bid for the presidency in 2000? Why did he hire the exact same folks that smeared him with ungodly rumors eight years ago? Maybe he made a Faustian bargain. This is undoubtedly his last shot at his most coveted dream, and he's seeing it slowly slipping away. If he is honest with himself he's probably wondering how the hell he got the nod from the Republican Party in the first place. Somehow the neocon wing of the party took control of the maverick, and we are seeing the results. It's an open secret that the cabal's head "intellectual" picked Sarah Palin as his running mate.

So what does that mean in terms of philosophy for the McCain/Palin team? Consider these now famous words:

"We will pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime."

-George W. Bush, September 20, 2001 address to the United States Congress.

I think that all the political observers that accused Sarah Palin of not knowing about the Bush Doctrine need to reassess their beliefs. She may not have been able to communicate the principles intelligibly, but she has shown beyond a shadow of a doubt, that she has internalized an understanding of the tactics that the approach involves. The McCain/Palin ticket is simply applying the Bush Doctrine to its political opponent. The accusations that Palin and McCain have made by insinuation (and in some cases quite directly) have very real consequences, and they need to be held accountable for them.

So if John McCain really wants to retain his "maverick" status, he needs to do what the 2000-era McCain would have done- jettison Sarah Palin*, Steve Schmidt, and the rest of their cronies. If McCain was truly uncomfortable with going negative (as some pundits have suggested), he needs to realize that he was forced to buy into a losing strategy. It's probably too late to turn the race around, but it would be an incredible move that would restore the faith a lot of people used to have in McCain's decency. It would be a game-changer, and not just a transient one. It might also go a long way in rehabilitating the dishonored Republican party. At this point, it looks like the old war hero has very little to lose by throwing one last "Hail Mary". Hell, maybe he can ask Hillary if she's available.

* Now that Sarah Palin has officially been found guilty of an "Abuse of Power" ethics violation by the Alaskan legislature, McCain has the perfect excuse to get rid of her. After all, he is the "reform candidate".

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Blogger Todd said...

You left a comment on my site the other day, and I must say that I do not think you took much time to read many of my it says on my site all the information pertaining to Presidential candidates policy positions is taken from the candidates websites and is not necessarily an endorsement. I gave equal time to all major candidates during the primary season and am doing the same leading up to the general election. I recently spent 5 weeks outlining Barack Obama's plans and am now spending 4 weeks on McCain. For more insight on my personal political views I have a second blog to which there is a link on the Rant blog. Thank you.

3:22 AM  

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