Thursday, September 4, 2008

Sarah Palin: The Speech: The Discussion

I'm throwing up this post to get some discussion going. Who here saw Sarah Palin's speech last night at the RNC? She really came out of the gate roaring, delivering a speech sure to rally the party faithful. After eight years of Dubbya I've forgotten that politicians are (usually) good orators, and no matter who wins at least we'll have people who'll be able to deliver rousing speeches. But what about Palin, what did you think?

My two cents: I'm a bit worried now. She's definitely a feisty one, and I can see her grabbing a hold of that "She's a soccer (well, hockey) mom just like me!" vote. She's definitely got that all-American mom with a dash of sexiness (dare I say 'MILF'?) thing going for her that just might appeal to women, though probably not those same women who were gunning for Hillary. I'm a bit disturbed by her nastiness though. In an election where one of the candidates appears to want to get away from the usual mud-slinging silly trite stuff of past elections (e.g. -"is he patriotic enough?"), here we've got a woman who looks like she's going to relish in the mud-slinging. A comment off of the Slate boards says it best:

"What we saw last night was the mainstreaming of Ann Coulter, the normalization of the principle that it isn't bile when it's spoken by a pretty woman. "

I won't vote for the McCain-Palin ticket not because I'm afraid of McCain keeping us in Iraq or what have you, but because A- McCain and Palin are pro-life (sorry, there's too many people in the world, we need to start making less of them) and B- In the past Palin has advocated the teaching of Creationism in the classroom (sorry, but I just can't take your opinions seriously if you believe in that).

What's your reaction?


Little Earl said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Herr Zrbo said...

I don't usually read the Slate, but I was looking for more coverage than just CNN/MSNBC/Fox's "Let's interview people who were there on the floor and ask them what they thought" coverage (duh, if they were there on the floor it's not hard to tell what their reaction was).

I guessed you picked your quotes carefully, but it's funny to see how many examples there are of "She's just _____ in a skirt"

teaparty said...

I thought it was a bit dirty for her to suggest her role as mayor is a better background than Obama's community planning. As if either are the only credentials they possess.

I'm hoping Obama gets personality points for avoiding discussion about Palin's daughter.

I'm a lady and I actually feel a bit offended that McCain picked her. I feel like we're being thrown a token woman and asked to pretend like the Republicans are a diverse and representative party. If they had a strong woman hanging around, they should have introduced her during the primaries.

One final thought- Canada is loving it. Every paper I saw today is full of hope that the US will finally start having more female leadership. WHich is ridiculous, since Palin stands for the exact opposite of majority Canadian political values. It's weird.

yoggoth said...

I didn't watch the speech, but I've read about it. It sounds like the sort of focused personal attack that has worked well for the GOP for the last 30 years.

As for Palin herself:
My own anecdotal evidence is split. One former Clinton supporter I know was leaning towards McCain after the pick because she wanted to vote for a strong woman (her words).

A lifelong Republican woman I know reacted very negatively, seeing the pick as a condescending insult to women - assuming that they would vote for an unqualified candidate just because she was female.

Personally, I think it's a big gamble. But McCain and his campaign know that the odds are against them with such an unpopular Republican incumbent and the economy entering a recession. They need to gamble to win.

Peter Matthew Reed said...

What I've heard from the polls is that the Palin pick had really polarized the already-staunch McCain supporters. I would guess this is because she is pretty far to the right of the image of McCain we are used too. But that independent/swing voters have been pushed to Obama.

Bush won in 2004 by energising his base. But I don't believe McCain can win this way. I think more independents will vote this November.

(As a sidenote, how hilarious is it for Romney to complain about the past 8 years of liberalism in Washington, and the need for reform?)

ninquelote said...

Shame on you, LE, for commenting on a speech, using other peoples' words, that you yourself didn't even watch. Haven't you ever heard of Youtube?

I watched most of the speech and I did think she came out a little hard against the dems, but I don't think it was because she's just mean. I think she did it for two reasons. One, to show that she could hang with the big boys, and two, to throw a punch at the media for questioning whether or not she had enough experience. Hillary did the same thing running against Barry, and lots of people thought she was kind of mean for it also.

This is an odd election in that we have a bunch of Senators as candidates for office. Governors are traditionally the one's who get the nominations for the Pres and VP spots. (Bush, Clinton, Reagan, Carter, etc). So to say that Palin doesn't have enough experience to be in the White House is only a question of time spent in politics not the office she held. In that case she has just as right to be there as Barry or Hillary. I think people are just prejudice against Alaska because everyone lives in igloos. No?

The fact is that every area that Barry is lacking in, Biden makes up for (being white). And every area that Old Man McCain is lacking in Palin makes up for (being a young, hot chick. I think it's the glasses that do it for me). I don't know much about Palin, but no one knew much about Barry either when he came on the scene. Besides, she's only the VP nom. I don't think McCain or Barry are weak enough to be pushed around by a VP the way Bush was.

As for the issues I listen to in order to decide who to vote for, I'm afraid I have to disagree with you, zrbo. Not that you're wrong about some important issues there, because those are a couple of good ones, but because they don't matter. I'll tell you what I mean.

Abortion and prayer in school are not good reasons to choose a candidate because they will never change!

Abortion will always be legal. Even if Roe vs Wade is overturned, individual states will still have the right to decide (as they should with most things) if abortion will be legal, and I guarantee they will keep it that way. The people will demand it.

Unless you live in the deep south where they embrace it, there will never be mandatory prayer in school because the public wouldn't stand for it. People would be yanking their kids out of schools left and right. And you know what that will cause? Schools would lose money, and they really, really don't want that to happen.

Now those are important issues that we need to fight for (or against) as a people, but not as a President. I look at things that the President can actually affect like economic policy (staying out of the economy), foreign policy (making alliances instead of enemies), health care (stop trying to run everything!!), education, defense, etc.

Those are the things that I find important, but that's just another opinion.

yoggoth said...

Unfortunately, Ninquelote, it's a bit too late in American history to expect politicians to stay out of the economy. Democrats and Republicans interfere with the free market to the same degree, they just differ slightly in how they interfere. You can point to differences in tax policies, but that ignores the effects of inflation. If inflation is high it has the same effect on your income as increased taxes. As long as we have the Federal Reserve, we'll have both parties hands' deep inside our markets. (Personally, I want the government involved because I'd rather have a democratically elected representative making important decisions rather than an unelected executive.)

There are, however, significant differences between the parties/candidates regarding health care and foreign policy. As for education, neither party seems to have a coherent plan. Everyone knows that the education system in our country is declining rapidly but no one wants to make the tough choices that fixing it will require. Those tough choices will involve fighting teachers unions (which the Democrats don't want to do) and raising taxes or cutting spending so that we'll have enough money to fix things(which the Republicans don't want to do).

Little Earl said...

Told you it was a can of worms.

"Shame on you, LE, for commenting on a speech, using other peoples' words, that you yourself didn't even watch. Haven't you ever heard of Youtube?"

Didn't know I was in the SHAMING business. I'm just an AMATEUR BLOGGER, not a journalist! Is there some sort of blogging etiquette we have to follow here? Geez Louise on a stick buddy. If you think a post like mine is ill-informed and speculative (I admitted as much), then feel free to ascribe to it the level of importance you wish.

Besides, I can't watch YouTube on this computer because *cough* I'm at work *cough*.

yoggoth said...

Likewise, Roe v. Wade is not the only concern. One more conservative vote and the Supreme Court may rule that American citizens can be held indefinitely by the government without charges. I find that a bit more threatening than the fear someone is going to take my guns away.

Oh, and Little Earl - I don't buy into the whole liberal media conspiracy theory but posting comments from the Washington Post isn't going to convince anyone.

yoggoth said...

Our tax dollars are paying for your comments LE, we demand quality!

Little Earl said...

Fine I'll delete it then.

yoggoth said...

Peter - didn't you know that the problem with the last 8 years of Washington politics is too much liberalism?

Teaparty - we all know that being mayor of a town of 6000 people is tough work! This argument got a lot of laughs from my family, who live in a town of about that size. They were all joking that the incoming mayor of that town (an unimpressive fellow) might be qualified to be VP as well!

yoggoth said...

LE you weren't supposed to actually delete it, now this comments thread makes no sense.

Little Earl said...

Just like the state of our nation!

Fine, I'll delete the rest of it as well.

Herr Zrbo said...

I don't expect that abortion is going to be taken away or that Creationism will really be taught in schools. What I'm doing is making the assumption that if the person believes in or is at least open to the idea of Creationism, then I don't want them leading my country, because I don't trust their judgement.

I see it more as a screening filter. If you get through the test then I'll listen to what that candidate has to say about foreign policy, etc. But if they can't past the test then they get to go hang out with the flying spaghetti monster and read horoscopes together.

You weren't kidding LE.

ninquelote said...

LE - I didn't mean for you to delete your comment, I wanted you to go home and watch the speech on Youtube, and then tell us what you thought. You, just you, and nobody else but you. And yoggoth is right about using the Washington Post as your source, but at least it was better than the NY Times.

zrbo - I understand your reasoning, but I don't necessarily agree with the particular filters you are using. I think people miss out on a lot of things they may actually agree with when they let those two issues come between them and the candidates. Barry doesn't believe in gay marriage, but you don't see that filtering out any democrats. That being said, I don't really care what filters you use. That's why we are having this discussion isn't it? So we can talk about what we think.

I also agree with yoggoth (go figure) that it's too late to get the gov's hands out of our economy. I've been watching the John Adams HBO miniseries and I have to say it would've been very exciting to have been there creating a country basically from scratch. Now there is so much crap that has built up over the years we just have to accept a certain level of red tape, and then try to move on from there.