Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Initial Thoughts on Sarah Pallin

McCain made a surprise choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his VP. The first thing that jumps into my mind: she’s an ID supporter, thinks it should be taught along with evolution in public school science classrooms. She’s also relatively anti-gay. Supporters will point to the fact that she vetoed a bill that would have done away with partnership benefits for gay state employees, but she did that only after the Alaska Supreme Court had ruled the opposite and her AG had told her the law was unconstitutional. She publicly disagreed with that ruling and supported a referendum to have the state constitution amended to overturn it.

The conservative reaction so far seems not to be too happy. The choice of Palin obviously voids any attacks on Obama because of experience; two years ago Palin was the part-time mayor of a small village of only a few thousand people in Alaska, for crying out loud. John Hinderaker at Powerline:

I’m worried about Palin. I’m afraid she may be the Geraldine Ferraro of 2008. If she really is the nominee, will it come across as a desperation move, a Hail Mary, as Mondale’s choice of Ferraro did in 1984? I’m afraid so. Her experience just doesn’t justify a place on the ticket.

Paul Mirengoff agrees with him:

I’m very disappointed that John McCain would put someone as inexperienced and lacking in foreign policy and national security background as Sarah Palin a heartbeat away from the presidency.

Could this help McCain woo some of those PUMAs away from the Democrats? Possibly. It was really the only choice he had that could possibly do that AND help him with the religious right base. In that respect, I think it’s a shrewd strategic choice for him.

Comments

  1. #1 Chet Lemon
    August 29, 2008

    Conservatives not too happy, Ed?

    Everyone I have spoken with is rockin’ about this choice.

    The “experience” debate is not one that Obama wants to have and I think McCain will be moving away from any “experience” theme anyway. I can think of three Dem POTUS candidates in the last 50 years criticized for “lack of experience.” Their names? Kennedy, Carter and Clinton.

    Obama certainly has a history that McCain can talk about…and it ain’t pretty.

    On one side, you have the Chicago Machine lackey and the ever-incumbent Washington partisan in Obama and Biden. On the other side you do have two reformers who have stuck their fingers in the eye sockets of their own party in McCain and Palin. I agree with you it’s a shrewd choice.

    Conservative reax, since you seem to have only seen one:

    http://michellemalkin.com/2008/08/29/palin-for-america-a-true-conservative/

    http://article.nationalreview.com/?q=NWIyZDUxOGE5MGQxNWI5ZDhkYmQ2OTU0N2M2ZTI5NzA=

    http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=28286

    http://ace.mu.nu/archives/271871.php

    Rush, Hugh Hewitt, Dennis Prager, Laura Ingraham are absolutely pumped.

    It’s nearly unanimous, bro, but this gives you an idea.

  2. #2 stogoe
    August 29, 2008

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    « Worldnetdaily: Biden Borked Bork | Main | Maybe Palin Does Have the Experience »
    Initial Thoughts on Sarah Pallin

    Category:
    Posted on: August 29, 2008 12:38 PM, by Ed Brayton

    McCain made a surprise choice of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his VP. The first thing that jumps into my mind: she’s an ID supporter, thinks it should be taught along with evolution in public school science classrooms. She’s also relatively anti-gay. Supporters will point to the fact that she vetoed a bill that would have done away with partnership benefits for gay state employees, but she did that only after the Alaska Supreme Court had ruled the opposite and her AG had told her the law was unconstitutional. She publicly disagreed with that ruling and supported a referendum to have the state constitution amended to overturn it.

    The conservative reaction so far seems not to be too happy. The choice of Palin obviously voids any attacks on Obama because of experience; two years ago Palin was the part-time mayor of a small village of only a few thousand people in Alaska, for crying out loud. John Hinderaker at Powerline:

    I’m worried about Palin. I’m afraid she may be the Geraldine Ferraro of 2008. If she really is the nominee, will it come across as a desperation move, a Hail Mary, as Mondale’s choice of Ferraro did in 1984? I’m afraid so. Her experience just doesn’t justify a place on the ticket.

    Paul Mirengoff agrees with him:

    I’m very disappointed that John McCain would put someone as inexperienced and lacking in foreign policy and national security background as Sarah Palin a heartbeat away from the presidency.

    Could this help McCain woo some of those PUMAs away from the Democrats? Possibly. It was really the only choice he had that could possibly do that AND help him with the religious right base. In that respect, I think it’s a shrewd strategic choice for him.

    ShareThis

    Comments

    She’s also anti-choice. That’s going to neutralize much of her attraction to former Clinton supporters who would like to vote for a woman.

    Posted by: Bill Poser | August 29, 2008 1:02 PM

    Obama’s response should be:

    I’m glad to see that Senator McCain has finally admitted that there are qualities more important than number of years in Washington that make a person qualified for the Presidency and Vice Presidency. Joe Biden and I will demonstrate why, when it comes to those qualities, we are by far the best choice this November. If Senator McCain’s campaign were to bring up experience again it would simply demonstrate their hypocrisy and desperation.

    Obama’s campaign already stupidly “went there” on inexperience, but it’s not too late for the candidate to fix it.

    Posted by: Mr. Upright | August 29, 2008 1:08 PM

    Oh, and if the media would just admit that some of the most prominent PUMAs are really Republican ratf**kers who shouldn’t be given air time, the whole “PUMA” movement would dissipate.

    Posted by: Mr. Upright | August 29, 2008 1:12 PM

    I was very surprised to hear that McCain picked Palin. I think she was smart choice however, and the surprise factor was part of that. I was a Huckabee supporter who was turned off by the prospect of Romney being VP. Now I am energized for McCain in a way I hadn’t imagined I could be. His choosing of Pro-Life and solidly conservative Palin has proven his good judgement to me. McCain has my full support and vote in November.

    Posted by: Kevin from Michigan | August 29, 2008 1:15 PM

    CNN says:

    McCain apparently is making a concerted effort to reach out to former supporters of Sen. Hillary Clinton who may be unhappy with the choice of Sen. Barack Obama as the Democratic nominee.

    Are there really people out there who would actually switch their vote to McCain out of sheer pique that Clinton didn’t get the nomination? I guess there must be, but my god– talk about perverted priorities.

    Posted by: Gretchen | August 29, 2008 1:24 PM

    Does the fact that she’s an ID creationist also “energize” you?

    Posted by: Leni | August 29, 2008 1:25 PM

    I googled Wasilla, Alaska, where Palin was mayor. It has almost exactly the same population as my little town. I can only laugh at the thought of my mayor going on to be governor and then vice president. He has abundant experience managing the local Radio Shack and chairing city council meetings. Foreign policy? Not so much.

    Posted by: Eveningsun | August 29, 2008 1:26 PM

    isn’t she also being investigated for corruption… having her ex-brother-in-law fired from the police force with political pressure or somesuch? It’ll be interesting to see that little drama play out on the national stage.

    Posted by: kodiak | August 29, 2008 1:27 PM

    Are there really people out there who would actually switch their vote to McCain out of sheer pique that Clinton didn’t get the nomination? I guess there must be, but my god– talk about perverted priorities.

    well……

    Posted by: Rev. BigDumbChimp, KoT | August 29, 2008 1:31 PM

    I really wish I had more than just media whining about this supposed group of extreme feminist hillary supporters who will vote for mccain. I’ve seen polls thrown around saying 50% of hillary supporters won’t vote for obama, but does anyone know how many of them are actually a) women, and b) feminists?

    Why do I think they are more likely to be blue-collar “working” (white, blacks don’t work remember) people, as opposed to pro-choice feminists, who’d care alot about a woman being president.

    Posted by: Coriolis | August 29, 2008 1:32 PM

    @Kevin

    I see that McCain’s paid blog commentators are out in force…

    I honestly can’t see how this is a positive for McCain. No one’s heard of her, no real experience (part time mayor!), and when you see them stand side by side – McCain looks 100 years older. Its painful. She is cute as a button tho.

    /still haven’t decided if I am voting for a president at all this time around

    Posted by: yoshi | August 29, 2008 1:33 PM

    How McCain should have introduced Palin:

    I have run a campaign against Obama’s celebrity, and my choice of Sarah Palin as running mate strengthens that campaign. Hell, even I’ve never heard of her!

    Posted by: Mr. Upright | August 29, 2008 1:38 PM

    Your link doesn’t seem to be working, Rev. BigDumbChimp.

    In any case, I predict that the number of people who would’ve voted for Clinton and will switch their vote to McCain since he chose a female VP candidate is smaller than the number of Republicans who will choose not to vote for McCain for his VP choice.

    Posted by: Gretchen | August 29, 2008 1:39 PM

    I was surprised by the Palin pick, but I agree with Ed that it was a brilliant move for McCain. I still don’t care for McCain, but I think it was a smart move because it will help shore up support with conservative evangelicals – a voting bloc that McCain needs to win. As for the people saying this is an effort to get Hillary supporters, get real. I hardly think that McCain believes that picking a vocally conservative woman will somehow woo diehard Hillary fans. I think it is also insulting to women to assert that they will switch to McCain merely because he picked a running mate that is a woman. I don’t think the average woman is so shallow that she will vote for a candidate based on just gender, but the media always seems to imply that. Remember late in the primaries when the media went down to southern states and asked Democrat black women if they were going to vote in the primaries based on race or gender? How stupid. I also don’t think the experience argument is going to resonate as much when directed at the McCain ticket. Palin has limited experience in politics in general, yes, but at least she has run a state and has apparently done it well based on her approval ratings. Also, she is not running for president, so her experience level is not as relevant as McCain in my view. All in all, I think McCain made a strong pick that made his chances that much better.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 1:40 PM

    I honestly can’t see how this is a positive for McCain.

    I think this shows that McCain was really feeling the heat from the Christian conservative faction of the party. His own record wasn’t good enough for them, so he had to get someone who they know is totally in their camp. This isn’t some olive branch towards feminist voters, this is a signal to rabid Christian conservatives that it’s okay to to vote for McCain. Hell, she could be the President herself inside of a year between his age and his health problems, and what fundie wingnut wouldn’t feel energized by that?

    Posted by: NonyNony | August 29, 2008 1:41 PM

    My fishing buddies are almost to a man, very right wing and think she is the second comming.Her anti choice stance has them in orgasms and they are already posting pictures of her with fish caught and deer she has shot.The whole guns rights brigade love that stuff. Most of my fishing buddies own boats and big trucks so love her stance of ‘drill until we look like a swiss cheese’ as the answer to our oil addiction problem. I think this will appeal to the rednecks and other folks who would have voted republican out of herd instinct but were not too excited about McCain as he is just not rabid right enough for them and may have stayed home. Most these folks I am talking about are from Florida panhandle/Mobile AL area so of course love her ID stance too.
    Its going to get interesting.

    Posted by: Eljay | August 29, 2008 1:44 PM

    yoshi,

    Maybe it’s her biggest qualification…runner up for Miss Alaska a couple of decades ago.

    And yes, kodiak, she is being investigated for abuse of power in attempting to get her ex brother-in-law fired.

    Posted by: Jim s | August 29, 2008 1:45 PM

    I’m interpreting this as the first indication of McCain’s campaign implosion. He was so desperate to pick someone who could revitalize his long-defunct “maverick” image that he picked someone who was in no way otherwise qualified. We’ll see more of it when he loses it when he debates Barack.

    Although Biden is going to have to be careful and not beat her TOO badly in the debate, lest he appear ungallant.

    Posted by: gary l. day | August 29, 2008 1:49 PM

    I don’t get it. McCain hammers Obama on experience, which is then countered by the consummate-foreign-affairs Biden. Then McCain changes direction 180 degrees and appoints a cute, inexperienced, young women.

    She must poll really, really well in the South and with Hillary supporters.

    Posted by: David C. Brayton | August 29, 2008 1:53 PM

    “I think it is also insulting to women to assert that they will switch to McCain merely because he picked a running mate that is a woman.”

    Then you must think the McCain campaign is really thumbing its nose at women, because 100% part of their motivation.

    Would a man with a similar resume and negligible national profile have stood any chance whatsoever at getting the nod?

    Posted by: Bad | August 29, 2008 1:54 PM

    Speaking McCain looking 100 years old, try saying “president palin” a few times to yourself, and see if you can keep from throwing up.

    Posted by: JRQ | August 29, 2008 1:57 PM

    Then you must think the McCain campaign is really thumbing its nose at women, because 100% part of their motivation.

    Bad, we can certainly disagree, but I don’t think McCain is as concerned about his lack of support among women as his lack of support among conservative evangelicals. This looks to me like a play to the evangelical base that was so important to the Republican ticket in 2000 and 2004. The fact that Palin is a woman might be a bonus, but I highly doubt that the women who supported Hillary would suddenly throw their votes to McCain in large numbers merely because of Palin.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 2:00 PM

    I also get the feeling that she’s not in favor of limiting the power of the Executive branch, since she *allegedly* abused her executive power as Governor — by *allegedly* having her aides put pressure on her brother-in-law’s boss (a state employee) while Palin’s brother-in-law was going through a custody battle with Palin’s sister. Palin says the aides took it upon themselves to call her brother-in-law’s boss:

    “Palin last Wednesday revealed a phone call made by her boards and commissions director, Frank Bailey, to a trooper lieutenant.

    “In the call, Bailey lists various complaints about Wooten and says the governor and her husband couldn’t understand why he still had a job. The governor admitted the call could be perceived as her office pressuring the Public Safety Department, but says that’s not what actually happened.”

    http://www.adn.com/monegan/story/499248.html

    Posted by: Trilbe | August 29, 2008 2:01 PM

    Palin is also under investigation and has recently stated she doesn’t have a clue as to “what is it exactly that the VP does every day”. In other words, a perfectly representative Republican!

    Posted by: QrazyQat | August 29, 2008 2:02 PM

    I’m interpreting this as the first indication of McCain’s campaign implosion. He was so desperate to pick someone who could revitalize his long-defunct “maverick” image that he picked someone who was in no way otherwise qualified. We’ll see more of it when he loses it when he debates Barack.

    Although Biden is going to have to be careful and not beat her TOO badly in the debate, lest he appear ungallant.

    Gary, I think you underestimate her. Sure, Biden has far more experience in national politics, but from what I have read about Palin, she is tough as nails. I hardly think she will roll over in the debates and let Biden walk all over her.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 2:03 PM

    The veep has never made much of a difference on the ticket. This is red meat for the social conservatives; she’s a member of Assemblies of God (Pentecostal), anti-abortion, anti-gay rights, and I suspect anti-birth control, although that won’t be an outright spoken position.

    Posted by: soboco | August 29, 2008 2:05 PM

    Supporters will point to the fact that she vetoed a bill that would have done away with partnership benefits for gay state employees

    They’ll point to that as a PLUS.

    The conservative reaction so far seems not to be too happy. The choice of Palin obviously voids any attacks on Obama because of experience

    The nuts at freeconservatives.com are thrilled. The base is jumping for joy. Obama and Biden have yet to make that precise argument, so it’s coming up roses for McCain so far.

    I still expect that to change.

    Posted by: FishyFred | August 29, 2008 2:06 PM

    Maybe it’s her biggest qualification…runner up for Miss Alaska a couple of decades ago.

    yes …. the horny lumberjack vote is now a lock for McCain…

    [grin]

    Posted by: yoshi | August 29, 2008 2:10 PM

    Shades of Harriet Miers! It’s really telling that McCain couldn’t find a suitable running-mate from within the Washington Republican establishment who have run this country for eight years. Don’t the Republicans want experienced leaders? Of course not. The minute you get the experience necessary to govern, the far right call you a traitor.

    Posted by: Raging Bee | August 29, 2008 2:18 PM

    It’s interesting to think about Obama’s and McCain’s picks in terms of how their gambling habits have been described.

    McCain’s definitely a high stakes, all in type of person. Obama is more measured, not into bluffs.

    Yet as presidential choices for the electorate, Obama is more risky (the unknown) and McCain is more the “safe bet”.

    Posted by: bud | August 29, 2008 2:21 PM

    And to think I worried he might pick Bobby Jindal. This is so much better. Weee.

    Posted by: Moopheus | August 29, 2008 2:22 PM

    i think grampa simpson is just trying to bring back his favorite canceled teevee show
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commander_in_Chief_(TV_series)

    Posted by: khefera | August 29, 2008 2:25 PM

    Don’t the Republicans want experienced leaders? Of course not. The minute you get the experience necessary to govern, the far right call you a traitor.

    Bee, who has been called a traitor by the far right for having experience?

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 2:26 PM

    My fishing buddies are almost to a man, very right wing and think she is the second comming.Her anti choice stance has them in orgasms

    “Hey, baby, are you ready for your second coming? Oh, yeah, you know you like my anti-choice stance. … ”

    (Sorrrrrry.)

    Posted by: itchy | August 29, 2008 2:29 PM

    mroberts, Palin named her children after witches. Granted they were TV witches. Granted they were good witches. All the evangelicals I know think all that witch stuff on tv is satanic, and the idea of good witches is a lie to fool us into accepting demonic influences in our lives.

    I think all the Obama camp has to do is have someone other than the candidate repeatedly point out to evangelicals that “Palin’s into witchcraft, she named her kids after witches,” and all those conservative Christians who’ve had their doubts about McCain will feel their doubts have been proven right.

    Posted by: James Hanley | August 29, 2008 2:34 PM

    Does she have to give up her job as governor in order to run for veep?

    Posted by: Elizabeth | August 29, 2008 2:34 PM

    Elizabeth:

    I don’t think there’s any formal requirement to resign as governor in order to run for VP; she may feel it necessary to resign for practical reasons.

    She will have to resign if she were to actually win the election.

    Posted by: Chiroptera | August 29, 2008 2:38 PM

    Eljay, your buddies must post here: http://forum.gon.com/forumdisplay.php?f=9
    (Warning: only read the threads on the above link on an empty stomach. Doing otherwise will result in the immediate discharge of all stomach contents)

    Posted by: Deepsix | August 29, 2008 2:39 PM

    I think all the Obama camp has to do is have someone other than the candidate repeatedly point out to evangelicals that “Palin’s into witchcraft, she named her kids after witches,” and all those conservative Christians who’ve had their doubts about McCain will feel their doubts have been proven right.

    Witches? I would be interested to see where you got that – I hadn’t heard anything about that. As for the end result, you could be right. I was only arguing the motivation, which appeared to me to be about getting the evangelical vote, which has been less than committed to McCain this election cycle.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 2:40 PM

    “Palin is also under investigation and has recently stated she doesn’t have a clue as to “what is it exactly that the VP does every day”.

    Actually, constitutionally and historically the VP did almost nothing. It’s only been in the last 50 years or so that they have taken on (power grabbed) staff and influence.

    Maybe she’s closer to the truth.

    [from what I've seen, she's sort of friendly to ID but specifically said it should not be part of the curriculum]

    Posted by: jayh | August 29, 2008 2:45 PM

    Bee, who has been called a traitor by the far right for having experience?

    Reagan, Bush Sr., Bush Jr., and just about anyone else who ever makes a compromise, accepts a deal, respects a right, or admits a fact contrary to the far right’s canon. Those loonies were calling Reagan a traitor before he even took office.

    Posted by: Raging Bee | August 29, 2008 2:53 PM

    [from what I've seen, she's sort of friendly to ID but specifically said it should not be part of the curriculum]

    [after saying it should]

    Posted by: Raging Bee | August 29, 2008 2:56 PM

    “Bee, who has been called a traitor by the far right for having experience?

    Reagan, Bush Sr., Bush Jr., and just about anyone else who ever makes a compromise, accepts a deal, respects a right, or admits a fact contrary to the far right’s canon.”

    Also, Nixon, Ford, Eisenhower . . . basically every republican except Goldwater himself has fallen short in some way, though many still give Reagan a pass.

    Posted by: Moopheus | August 29, 2008 2:58 PM

    Ed – She is MUCH more that just a teach the controversy moron. I have seen it reported on Daily Kos that she is a home-schoolin’ YEC Dominationist Mom.

    I don’t know why McCain and Sarah hate America so much.

    Hint to Joe Biden – ask her

    1.) How many ribs she has, and how many McCain has?
    2.) How old is the earth?
    3.) Should the USA follow Biblical Law?

    Posted by: J-Dog | August 29, 2008 3:04 PM

    Reagan, Bush Sr., Bush Jr., and just about anyone else who ever makes a compromise, accepts a deal, respects a right, or admits a fact contrary to the far right’s canon. Those loonies were calling Reagan a traitor before he even took office.

    LOL. Bee, why wouldn’t people call a member of their party a traitor to the party if they do something contrary to the party platform? Lots of black Democrats have called conservative blacks “Uncle Toms” for being conservative. That happened a lot to Lieutenant Governor Steele of Maryland. Larry Elder (who is more libertarian than the average conservative) gets called that all the time when he opposes Democratic policies. Bee, you are so partisan. You criticize conservatives for things that even your beloved Democrats do.

    Frankly, if you say you believe in something and do the absolute opposite of what you say, you have betrayed your values. I don’t see how that is surprising.

    Besides, I think my question was about experience. Who has been called a traitor by the far right for having experience?

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 3:05 PM

    Ed – She is MUCH more that just a teach the controversy moron. I have seen it reported on Daily Kos that she is a home-schoolin’ YEC Dominationist Mom.

    Whats the issue with home schooling? Home schoolers are often a lot smarter than the kids who grow up in our pathetic public schools.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 3:09 PM

    I would hope that Clinton supporters wouldn’t now decide to vote for McCain just because he chose Palin – it’s extremely insulting to think that Palin would somehow substitute for Clinton just because she’s a woman.

    I agree with the people who have said that it’s a nod (kowtow, pandering, whatever you want to call it) to the rightwing. Why else choose a gun-loving, creationism touting, anti-choice conservative? (And what else would we expect from McCain who specializes in flip-flopping and pandering?)

    I think it’s also another attempt (as Carl Rove and his cronies love to do) to divide the country and reframe the debate. Why talk about the things that actually need to be done (repair the economy, restore America’s good name and respect around the world) and who is the right team to do them when we could waste time commenting on how “cute” the VP choice is. And arguing about teaching religious doctrines in public schools. And riling up the anti-gay contingent again.

    Typical Rove strategy. Hopefully the American public won’t fall for it yet again. I was really hoping to wake up in November from this 8 year nightmare.

    Posted by: farmgal | August 29, 2008 3:10 PM

    The American Family Association, Michelle Malkin, Hugh Hewitt and the Christian Coalition are all having orgasms right now. You can check their websites, I am not kidding. There are a couple of people with poor reading skills that read no further than her veto of the anti-domestic partner bill, and didn’t bother reading why, that are ranting, but once Limbaugh and Hannity explain it to them, they’ll be rolling in the aisles (as does the Pentecostal Palin) praising Jesus!

    Posted by: soboco | August 29, 2008 3:15 PM

    The Rapture Ready crowd was never going to decide this election. It’s the independents that are going to make a difference. In trying to shore up support (and money) from his radical republican base, I think McCain has made it harder for his ticket to appeal to the independents.

    If recent electoral history is any judge, creationist candidates are highly radioactive. They satisfy the racial base, but they turn away everyone else. It is an easy litmus test for voters to identify if a candidate is forward looking or backward looking.

    I think if the pro-science crowd and the media make an issue out of it, McCain-Palin is not going to be that appealing to independents.

    Posted by: Reed A. Cartwright | August 29, 2008 3:19 PM

    If pleasing the evangelicals was the main driving force behind the VP selection, it seems ludicrous that McCain would choose Palin over Huckabee. The latter is well known, relatively photogenic, speaks with confidence, has a proven track record of attracting this demographic and can bring the Conservative Christian crazy like nobody’s business. Gender clearly played a major role.

    Posted by: drb | August 29, 2008 3:20 PM

    Home schoolers are often a lot smarter than the kids who grow up in our pathetic public schools.

    Gee, ever ask yourself WHY our public schools are so “pathetic?” (Assuming they are, of course, which is really not always the case.) Could decades of Republican hatemongering, political interference and defunding have something to do with it?

    As for Palin’s kids, maybe we should test their skills. Specifically, we should try to ascertain what, exactly, their mom taught them about such things as evolution, the US Constitution, religious rights, history, etc. Given the loony revisionism and flat-out lies that have come from the religious right, I think this is relevant in the case of a VP candidate.

    Posted by: Raging Bee | August 29, 2008 3:25 PM

    This Palin pick has me shocked. Either McCain is desperate because the GOP field is so depleted of good choices, or quite callous in his thought processes. If it were Michael Palin, I’d be very happy, but alas he can’t run. Sarah Palin? Unless the American people are still so ideologically polarized and conservative, I think most of them will see this as a vacuous pick indicative of traditional power GOP machinations. As nice ideological window-dressing; she will be told what to do, what to say, where to go, and she will obediently do her part, all the while being thankful that she can finally leave Alaska and an ethics investigation, and where it seems the Democrats will pick up a Senate seat, and even perhaps the lone House seat.

    I could be (hugely) wrong, but I’m wondering if John is raiding Cindy’s medicine cabinet.

    Posted by: ebina2 | August 29, 2008 3:26 PM

    Whats the issue with home schooling? Home schoolers are often a lot smarter than the kids who grow up in our pathetic public schools.

    Home-schooling in general? Nothing wrong with it. Home-schooling so that you can protect your children from horrible things like evolution and the fact that gay people exist? A different thing altogether.

    Posted by: Gretchen | August 29, 2008 3:26 PM

    Whats the issue with home schooling? Home schoolers are often a lot smarter than the kids who grow up in our pathetic public schools.

    Why would the type of schooling determine how “smart” a child is? Don’t you mean “better educated?”

    Regardless, do you know of any comprehensive studies that back this up? It’s sort of hard to compare the students in organized public schools with the students in unorganized home schools. Home schoolers are not required by law to take the same litmus tests as regular schoolers are so you don’t get the same data on them.

    Just as there are children graduating from home schools and going to the Ivy League, there are children graduating from home schools with hardly any education at all. Toss in all the parents that home school not for education but because they don’t like modern education (evolution and sex-ed), and you have a large proportion of students not prepared for the real world by their home schools.

    Much of my family is in education, and they see it all the time.

    Posted by: Reed A. Cartwright | August 29, 2008 3:30 PM

    The only possible benefit of choosing Palin is the hope that he can firm up his bona fides with the evangelical base. But in doing so he’s sold his soul to the evangelical right for a mess of pottage, and badly soiled his already tarnished image as a maverick and reformer. And, if he really thinks some of Clinton’s supporters will abandon Obama for him because he’s chosen an anti-choice, anti-gay, fundie zealot for VP, he’s dreaming. At best a handful of them might, but no more, and not enough to have an impact.

    I heard an NPR reporter yesterday say that on Wednesday night and on Thursday after Clinton’s move to nominate Obama by acclimation, he interviewed more than 200 Clinton delegates on whether they would support Obama. Fewer than five too that position. In other words the magnitude of the PUMA movement was an invention of the media in order to gin up stories.

    In the end McCain is trying to make the race about issues that are important but tangential to the real issues, as farmgal notes. We need real debates on taxes, energy, financial regulation, women’s rights, foreign affairs (like how to deal with Russia, Bin Laden, Iraq, Afghanistan, Darfur. etc.) and not red meat that elicits the xenophobia lurking in the hearts of too many voters.

    Posted by: Keanus | August 29, 2008 3:33 PM

    “Home-schooling in general? Nothing wrong with it. Home-schooling so that you can protect your children from horrible things like evolution and the fact that gay people exist? A different thing altogether.”

    But such homeschooling is a right to be protected, nonetheless, even while others have the right to criticize the curriculum.

    While the right to free expression of religion also protects the irreligious, the right to educate one’s kids as one sees fit, without being mandated to send them to government schools also protects the rights of say, science-friendly parents to educate their kids if the local public schools get taken over by “teach the controversy.”

    But you know all this.

    Posted by: Spike | August 29, 2008 3:51 PM

    …the right to educate one’s kids as one sees fit…

    That’s not a right, that’s an OBLIGATION — to make sure that kids get the education they need to exercise their rights and function as equals in a free society.

    Posted by: Raging Bee | August 29, 2008 3:57 PM

    Yes I do, Spike. ;-) There are lot of people who do things which I acknowledge they have the perfect right to do, but whom I nevertheless shudder to imagine as vice president. Guess that’s my elitism creeping in…

    Posted by: Gretchen | August 29, 2008 3:58 PM

    Could someone explain to a poor Canadian what PUMA stands for? I can’t keep up with your political jargon….

    Posted by: Eamon Knight | August 29, 2008 3:59 PM

    She is easily the hottest VP nominee ever, way ahead of Geraldine Ferraro.

    More seriously, I don’t think she’s as strong a pick as Ed suggests. Yes, she says all the right things to the fundies, but then, so did Bush, and so does McCain (now). Her record of actually doing anything is summed up in one veto.

    As far as her popularity in Alaska goes, $120 per barrel oil will do that.

    In addition, she’s still an Alaskan politician, which means the scandals are just waiting to be uncovered. My prediction is she’s only a 50/50 shot to actually receive the nomination.

    Posted by: kehrsam | August 29, 2008 4:02 PM

    I think it’s nice that McCain invited his granddaughter to be his running mate.

    Posted by: Woody Tanaka | August 29, 2008 4:13 PM

    I’ll go ahead and say it–I don’t believe that homeschooling for ideological reasons should be legitimated. I think its primary effect is to shelter kids from the real world, and that never does them any favors.

    Posted by: Sadie Morrison | August 29, 2008 4:14 PM

    J-Dog wrote:

    I have seen it reported on Daily Kos that she is a home-schoolin’ YEC Dominationist Mom.

    I’d sure love to have actual evidence of that.

    Posted by: Ed Brayton | August 29, 2008 4:16 PM

    Lets see, oil rich, gun toting, beauty queen… Ellie May Clampet for VP?

    Posted by: Abby Normal | August 29, 2008 4:19 PM

    Sadie,

    I would say that public schools exist for ideological reasons, so why shouldn’t home-schooling? Public schools exist according to the ideology that it is a public responsibility to educate all children, for the greater good– and not only to educate them, but to teach them how to be good citizens. Unfortunately, some public schools also perpetuate the ideology that scientific naturalism is the wrong way to approach science, and the wrong way to teach it to children. My ideology is directly contrary to this. So if my ideology tells me that I shouldn’t allow my (hypothetical) children to be subjected to their ideology, what is wrong with me removing those children from school so I can teach them mine instead?

    Posted by: Gretchen | August 29, 2008 4:20 PM

    see, this is why i love the show “The McLaughlin Group”. they’ve been talking about Palin-on-the-VP-short-list for, like, a year

    Posted by: skyotter | August 29, 2008 4:23 PM

    Sadie,

    Please take a look at Sudbury Valley Schools and the free schools concept. Those are private schools specifically set up under the ideology that children are smart enough to take responsibility for their own education, will learn what they want and need to know, and are able to have a direct say in how their school is run, from its rules to who gets to become and stay on as a teacher.

    (And, btw, they generally cost less per pupil to operate than their public shool counterparts.)

    Posted by: Spike | August 29, 2008 4:36 PM

    mroberts:

    Gary, I think you underestimate her. Sure, Biden has far more experience in national politics, but from what I have read about Palin, she is tough as nails. I hardly think she will roll over in the debates and let Biden walk all over her.

    Alrighty! Palin won McCain the vote of mroberts! I’m sure mroberts is the first of the ‘Hilltards’ who’ll swing to vote McCain! Surely a tidal wave will follow!

    Posted by: llewelly | August 29, 2008 4:56 PM

    One issue that I haven’t seen addressed here concerns Senator McCains age and health. On the health side, the senator has had a couple of bouts with cancer. On the age side, there are indications of some deterioration in his thinking processes at age 72. What this means is that there is a more then finite possibility that, if elected, his vice-presidential choice could become president during his first term, and a serious possibility if elected to a second term. Therefore, I think there will be a greater scrutiny of her qualifications to take over in the event of something untoward happening to Senator McCain.

    Basically, this is interesting considering the gambling habits of Senators McCain and Obama. McCain apparently likes to play craps and has the reputation of being a big time gambler. Obama, on the other hand, is, like Mr. Brayton, a poker player and has the reputation of being somewhat conservative in his approach to the game. This seems to be reflected in their vice-presidential choices. McCain rolls the dice in a big time gamble, Obama plays it conservatively.

    Posted by: SLC | August 29, 2008 5:03 PM

    Incidentally, compare the approach of Senator McCain with Ronald Reagan. Reagan addressed the age problem directly by selecting George H. W. Bush who, by virtue of his experience was clearly qualified to take over in the event of death or incapacity of the former. Not even a moron like Mr. Mroberts could claim that Governor Pallin is more qualified to take over the presidency then was Bush senior.

    Posted by: SLC | August 29, 2008 5:08 PM

    mroberts, if the conservative evangelicals get behind Palin then the republicans have bigger problems than we thought. Or did you forget 1 Timothy 2:12:
    “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent”

    A woman as VP would be a single heartbeat away from having “authority over men” than any other woman in histroy.

    For the conservative evangelicals to embrace Palin would have to mean that they have abandoned not only their conservative values, but their evangelical ones as well. While watching the CE’s abandoning their principles wouldn’t be a surprise, it would be amusing to watch them have to do so in the full view of the public.

    Posted by: Blaidd Drwg | August 29, 2008 5:09 PM

    The Obama campaign has done a marvelous job of highlighting the historical significance of nominating a black man for President. His speech at the Dems convention was masterful political theatre. So I think that the Republicans had no choice but to nominate either a woman or a person of colour in the VP slot. So that been the case you pick someone who is going to appeal to the religious right. So as Ed said McCain made the smart choice.

    Posted by: Cheddar | August 29, 2008 5:13 PM

    “She is easily the hottest VP nominee ever, way ahead of Geraldine Ferraro.”

    Then clearly you’ve forgotten about Lloyd Bentsen :-)

    D.

    Posted by: HDS | August 29, 2008 5:13 PM

    In response all this “experience” jazz, what were Quayle’s qualifications? Certainly not spelling or foreign affairs. (Happy campers anyone?) Governor Palin has the same qualifications – easy on the eyes, appeals to conservatives, and not a threat to overshadow the candidate.
    Now ask yourself, and be honest, which wants to make you vomit in your mouth: President Palin or President Biden? Urrrp…

    We reside in a Nation of Idiots – only an idiot looks to a fool for guidance or leadership.

    Posted by: Onkel Bob | August 29, 2008 5:15 PM

    Palin might get a few ripples against her for the witchcraft idea with hardcore fundies. What she will not get is one vote from any atheist woman, or one vote from the pagan community male or female. Add the gay and lesbian groups and you can see McShame just lost a lot of votes. If Obama keeps up his religious rants he will loose the same groups. Of course, they don’t care.

    Posted by: Patricia | August 29, 2008 5:19 PM

    mroberts – why do you like this candidate rather than Bobby Jindal?

    Posted by: Michael Heath | August 29, 2008 5:30 PM

    Onkel Bob says we live in an nation of idiots, but he lives here to. Does that make him one of the idiots? If he’s not an idiot, is he just too lazy to change things, to lead the rest of us out of our idiocy?

    And the “let’s make childish remarks about mroberts” whackos are out in full force yet again. If you disagree with his ideas, deal with the ideas, there is nothing in his posts on this page that merits any kind of personal attacks. Grow the fuck up, or at least go to some other blog.

    Posted by: Spike | August 29, 2008 5:33 PM

    Re Spike

    Mr. Spike seems to be under the impression that this is his blog. My response to his last comment is to suggest that he stick it where the sun don’t shine.

    Posted by: SLC | August 29, 2008 5:43 PM

    Obviously, McCain is reaching out for the oft-neglected Eskimo vote. Important for the global warming issue.

    Posted by: dave | August 29, 2008 5:45 PM

    Spike, are you familiar with the phrase Foxtrot Oscar Alpha Delta? Did you serve 10 years active duty protecting the nation from enemies, survive 3 terrorist attacks while stationed overseas, or brief then Major General Colin Powell on security measures required to protect a Class A asset? If not, then I did more in my 20’s then you have done in your entire life.
    As we said on the hill, Echo Sierra, buddy, Echo Sierra. Say hi to Jack for me, because you obviously know him quite well.

    Posted by: Onkel Bob | August 29, 2008 5:48 PM

    Now ask yourself, and be honest, which wants to make you vomit in your mouth: President Palin or President Biden?

    I vote C: All of the Above.

    Posted by: Gretchen | August 29, 2008 5:51 PM

    Gretchen, thank you for reading to understand, not to refute. That was my point, neither presidential candidate appeals to me, the VP choices even less so. Guess I’ll split my vote between the Greens and Libertarians again, because no way I’m voting for a gangster.
    That is unless Spike is going to lead us into some glorious future.
    Rome was not built in a day, it did not fall in a day. And during the invasions, migrations, pestilence, and famine, the markets were still open and the wealthy still obtained their luxury goods. Commerce is not a good indicator of the vitality of a society, education, literacy, and the arts reveal far more useful and pertinent data. Which begs the question: Will Palin be to McCain, what Theodora was to Justinian?
    (Look up Procopius and Secret History for the story of Theodora, my students absolutely go crazy when I assign it. They never see it coming and consistently rate it as the best assignment of the semester.)

    Posted by: Onkel Bob | August 29, 2008 6:12 PM

    Eamon Knight:

    PUMA= Party Unity My Ass

    (I had to look it up too)

    And Blaidd Drwg, you are expecting flat-earthers to be intellectually consistent. Ain’t going to happen.

    Posted by: BaldApe | August 29, 2008 6:26 PM

    What’s all this about Palin? I heard McCain’s running mate was named Gustav.

    Posted by: Herod the Freemason | August 29, 2008 6:32 PM

    Remember late in the primaries when the media went down to southern states and asked Democrat black women if they were going to vote in the primaries based on race or gender?

    Um – that was The Daily Show that did that. You are aware that The Daily Show is comedy, not serious news, yes?

    Posted by: Alex | August 29, 2008 6:33 PM

    Babies???

    The VP is an important position. Surely she won’t want to get pregnant while campaigning or in office, right?

    So she’ll be using her birth control, right?

    Family planning.. for the sake of the country…it’s the right thing to do.

    Posted by: david s | August 29, 2008 6:43 PM

    The notion that Palin will attract Hillary supporters on the merit of her being a woman is an insult to women who’ve fought so long, and so hard to get beyond “window dressing.

    Posted by: aak | August 29, 2008 6:43 PM

    I don’t really see this as a good move. Sure, his selection of Sarah Pallin strengthens McCain’s position with the ultra-conservative crowd, evangelicals, gun advocates, anti-abortion, anti-gay, ID advocates, etc., but he already had their votes. None of those voters were going to vote for Obama, few, if any, were going to vote for a 3rd party candidate, and even though they might gripe and bitch about it, the vast majority were going to swallow their pride, and vote for McCain.

    What he did lose, on the other hand, was every single moderate and independent who has any common sense. Now, when you look at the two parties, you see the Democrats, a mixture of legitimate moderation and change, versus the Republicans, with an ultra-conservative VP and “Captain Courageous” who has dropped every shred of integrity he ever had to get the nomination in the first place.

    I really don’t see moderate independents with any brains voting for the Republicans, the McCain campaign basically told all of them, “to hell with you, we want a theocracy!”

    Posted by: dogmeatib | August 29, 2008 6:44 PM

    Could this help McCain woo some of those PUMAs away from the Democrats?

    Sorry, I’m not up on all the latest political slang and acronyms… is this something like cougars?

    Anyway, on a more cynical note, I think Biden was going to be very strong the attack with the Republican VP nominee. But I’m just imagining a VP debate and how the oh-so-feminist Republicans will protest that Biden is beating up a woman. I think he’s going to be in a position where he will have to be careful. Not because women should be treated any differently from men in the political arena, but because the reality of the politics will leave him vulnerable to Republican cries that he is abusive to Palin. As I said, it’s a cynical thought, but I do wonder if among the many reasons Palin was chosen, being a pretty, younger woman wasn’t a consideration in developing a strategy to neutralize the older, white male Biden.

    I’m not sure. I’m just speculating.

    Posted by: Dr X | August 29, 2008 6:46 PM

    It may energize the base, to a point, but Mc Cain’s just pissed away whatever chance he had with his old constituency among the Fiscal/Bush I wing of the Republican party and libertarian-leaning independents. This move will further drive secularists from the Republican party (goodbye, Randian republicans) and further entrench it in the radical right.

    I doubt he can when with only the conspiracy theorist and evangelical vote, but we’ll see; it’s all still up in the air right now.

    Posted by: Julian | August 29, 2008 6:48 PM

    Gah! There’s something seriously out of whack with my internal editing todayl that’s the 6th huge grammar-spelling mistake I’ve missed today. That should be, “I doubt he can win…”

    Posted by: Julian | August 29, 2008 6:52 PM

    …. That ‘l’ behind ‘today’ should be a period.

    I give up. *retreats to a bar in shame*

    Posted by: Julian | August 29, 2008 6:55 PM

    mrroberts: “Witches? I would be interested to see where you got that – I hadn’t heard anything about that.”

    It’s a joke. Her daughters Willow, Bristol, and Piper and named (so the story goes) for where they were conceived: in the town of Willow, AK, on a fishing boat in Bristol Bay, and in a Piper airplane. Which reminds me…

    david s: “Babies???
    The VP is an important position. Surely she won’t want to get pregnant while campaigning or in office, right?”

    Palin already had a baby while in office, last April as a matter of fact. The shocker was that nobody noticed she was pregnant until her 8th month when she announced it.

    Ed: I’d sure love to have actual evidence of that.

    Home-schooling YEC stays in the rumor bin for now. If there was evidence, I think I would’ve heard it.

    To the larger point of Palin being a “teach the controversy-ist,” the fact is she has done nothing to advance this view. Likewise, although she is anti-abortion, she angered the pro-life crowd in Alaska by refusing to take action against a court ruling against parental notification.

    Posted by: Grumpy | August 29, 2008 6:56 PM

    Whats the issue with home schooling? Home schoolers are often a lot smarter than the kids who grow up in our pathetic public schools.

    mrroberts,

    As has already been pointed out, the level of intelligence of homeschoolers is no different than that of public school children. The primary difference is, with homeschool children of parents who care and are truly dedicated to the process, that the children have a very solid foundational understanding of basic concepts. As an educator at the high school level, I have seen a number of problems with home school children:

    1) Many of them completely lack an ability to construct and support a position of their own within a debate structure. They often have little, or no, ability to consider issues without someone else providing them with a position to take, IE their positions on all issues and events is basically their parents, if their parents haven’t expressed an opinion, they don’t know what to do or how to proceed.

    2) They often lack any level of scientific knowledge. Their understanding of basic biology, astronomy, geology, etc., is almost nil. Generally for religious reasons.

    3)They often fall far behind in advanced math. Their parents could handle the basics, but when it came to higher level math they struggled.

    Of course these kids are also the ones who were ultimately sent to a public high school because the parents realized they were unable to continue teaching their children. They had impressive dedication to doing their homework, were extremely polite, very honest, and quite nice. They often seemed to completely lack the ability to interact with others their own age.

    In the end, many of them were wonderful little automatons who would do whatever you told them to without question, would accept almost anything you told them (non-religious) without question, worked very hard, tried very hard, and generally didn’t think too hard at anything approaching a deeper level, didn’t try to rock the boat, were seriously challenged when it came to even considering an opinion other than one that they had accepted as their own. Precisely what many of their parents wanted to achieve.

    Posted by: dogmeatib | August 29, 2008 7:03 PM

    It’s a joke. Her daughters Willow, Bristol, and Piper and named (so the story goes) for where they were conceived: in the town of Willow, AK, on a fishing boat in Bristol Bay, and in a Piper airplane.

    Got it! :) Sorry, a little slow on Fridays. Yes, the names are a little strange, but different strokes for different folks I guess.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 7:04 PM

    dogmeatib, maybe you have found that to be the case, but it seems awfully strange to read your criticism about homeschoolers when even worse can be said about public schools. There are several districts in California where only about half the students even graduate. And those that do graduate can hardly read and write. Seems odd that you would criticize a few homeschoolers with the public schools doing so pathetic. I know some people that were homeschooled and they are brilliant. Absolutely blew out the SAT tests and started college at an early age. Yes, I am sure there are some parents that aren’t up to the task, but there are plenty of public schools that are far worse. I for one will be sending my kids to private school where they can get a classical education. It’s amazing what a good classical academy teaches. Show me a public school where kids are learning logic, grammar, rhetoric, integrating it with science, music, and math. Show me a public school where kids are well-versed in Latin and Greek and can explain the philosophies of Plato and Aristotle in 8th grade. There is a reason that homeschooled and classically taught kids constantly do well in national debating contests. Sorry, but few public schools can say that.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 7:12 PM

    What he did lose, on the other hand, was every single moderate and independent who has any common sense. Now, when you look at the two parties, you see the Democrats, a mixture of legitimate moderation and change, versus the Republicans, with an ultra-conservative VP and “Captain Courageous” who has dropped every shred of integrity he ever had to get the nomination in the first place.

    LOL, dogmeat you are the worst example of disingenuousness. Obama is moderate? WOW. Obama has support positions on abortion that even NARAL won’t support. He is a blatant socialist, had a communist father (yes, that DOES matter), and has been cozy with some pretty radical folks like Jeremiah Wright, Ayers, and groups like ACORN. If you think that is moderate and mainstream, YOU are the one who is radical and out of touch. Once this stuff really starts getting tossed around in the media, it is going to hurt Obama really bad. Already he is trying to stifle radio ads about his links with that terrorist Ayers.

    I really don’t see moderate independents with any brains voting for the Republicans, the McCain campaign basically told all of them, “to hell with you, we want a theocracy!”

    Theocracy? Riiiiiight. Show me the quotes where McCain was advocating for a theocracy please.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 7:18 PM

    J-Dog, is “Dominationist” a funny joke or an honest typo? It’s funny either way, but I’m just curious.

    Posted by: pough | August 29, 2008 7:29 PM

    Gretchen and Spike–we will have to agree to disagree. At the very least, I think that homeschooling should be regulated more stringently than how I currently often see it applied. Granted, I am working with the experiences of a small sample of people I’ve known who have been homeschooled.

    Posted by: Sadie Morrison | August 29, 2008 7:30 PM

    mroberts, if the conservative evangelicals get behind Palin then the republicans have bigger problems than we thought. Or did you forget 1 Timothy 2:12:
    “I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent” A woman as VP would be a single heartbeat away from having “authority over men” than any other woman in histroy.

    blaidd, if you are going to try to argue the Bible, at least learn something about it before you do so. Thanks for the laugh though.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 7:39 PM

    What’s the fuss? It’s clearly part of ID.

    Posted by: SW | August 29, 2008 7:51 PM

    If you’re going to claim that someone is wrong, do us the small favor of troubling yourself to explain why they’re wrong. Otherwise your post is not worth the effort it took to make it.

    Posted by: Gretchen | August 29, 2008 7:57 PM

    LOL, dogmeat you are the worst example of disingenuousness. Obama is moderate? WOW. Obama has support positions on abortion that even NARAL won’t support. He is a blatant socialist, had a communist father (yes, that DOES matter), and has been cozy with some pretty radical folks like Jeremiah Wright, Ayers, and groups like ACORN. If you think that is moderate and mainstream, YOU are the one who is radical and out of touch.

    Son…YOU are out of touch. And you’re clearly not very conversant with the black community if you call Jeremiah Wright radical. Hang around the black community (it’s OK…you won’t catch anything there). He’s pretty much a standard bread and butter Christian minister who’s been saying the same thing many, many other black ministers have been saying since the late 60s and 70s.

    And if you keep your ears open, you’ll hear many, many complaints about Obama being not liberal enough and not progressive enough.

    Mrroberts–you keep blathering about things you know nothing about. You REALLY need to shut up and LEARN SOMETHING.

    Posted by: gwangung | August 29, 2008 8:09 PM

    This news is outstanding. This will really pump up the title wave the is already sweeping over NObama

    Posted by: Right-man | August 29, 2008 8:09 PM

    Re Mroberts

    A question for Mr. Mroberts. How many homeschooled children have won Nobel Prizes in physics? Or chemistry or medicine for that matter? The Bronx School of Science, a public high school, has had 6 graduates win the Nobel Prize in physics.

    Posted by: SLC | August 29, 2008 8:09 PM

    > And if you keep your ears open, you’ll hear many, many
    complaints about Obama being not liberal enough and not progressive enough.

    Who is calling him NOT liberal enough? The clown’s tax policy will crush this country. He is a communist.

    Posted by: Wow!~ | August 29, 2008 8:15 PM

    Mrroberts–you keep blathering about things you know nothing about. You REALLY need to shut up and LEARN SOMETHING.

    Whatever you say gwangung. It appears that I am the only one who has bothered to learn anything here – or at least bothered to look objectively at it. If a white preacher said the stuff that Wright does, he would be branded a racist. Please tell me why that does not apply to Wright? Please also tell me how voting against the Infant Born Alive Act in IL demonstrates how mainstream Obama is when even NARAL would shy away from doing that. Please also explain to me why Obama hangs out with a proud and unrepentant terrorist who tried to bomb the US Capitol? How does Obama qualify as being “mainstream” when he hangs out with people like that? No gawangung, sorry, in your little world that may not be radical. But in the real world, IT IS.

    Posted by: mroberts | August 29, 2008 8:19 PM

    The thread was about Sarah Palin, but…

    “The clown’s tax policy will crush this country. He is a communist.”

    Unless I’m mistaken, Communists want to take over ownership of the means of production. They aren’t satisfied with slightly increasing taxes on the top 5% of incomes.

    Posted by: Grumpy | August 29, 2008 8:21 PM

    Abby – you wrote “Lets see, oil rich, gun toting, beauty queen… Ellie May Clampet for VP?”
    Nice to see her running mate again, I always wondered what happened to Roger Ramjet :) -DJ

    Posted by: DingoJack | August 29, 2008 8:28 PM

    “Unless I’m mistaken, Communists want to take over ownership of the means of production. They aren’t satisfied with slightly increasing taxes on the top 5% of incomes.”

    You are mistaken. Yes, he is a communist. He will tax us all to death. He is a baby killing communist.

    Posted by: None | August 29, 2008 9:07 PM

    dogmeatib, maybe you have found that to be the case, but it seems awfully strange to read your criticism about homeschoolers when even worse can be said about public schools.

    I love how you make a statement like this after calling me disingenuous. You lump all of the school districts in the country, and all of the millions of children they educate into one statement with absolutely no evidence to support your position at the same time you elevate homeschool kids above them with, again, no evidence to support that position. Then, I guess in an attempt to be even more dishonest you shift over to private schooling.

    I for one will be sending my kids to private school where they can get a classical education. It’s amazing what a good classical academy teaches. Show me a public school where kids are learning logic, grammar, rhetoric, integrating it with science, music, and math. Show me a public school where kids are well-versed in Latin and Greek and can explain the philosophies of Plato and Aristotle in 8th grade. There is a reason that homeschooled and classically taught kids constantly do well in national debating contests. Sorry, but few public schools can say that.

    How much will you be paying for this private school? People like you seem to completely ignore the old adage, “you get what you pay for.” You bitch and whine about taxes, call those who want to correct the public school systems socialist for wanting to do so, and then pay the money to get your child a better quality education you just denied to others. You’re a complete hypocrite.

    You’re the kind of guy who points to private schools and cites their test scores as “proof” that they are superior all the while ignoring that the public schools that get similar funding and are allowed to exclude children who don’t meet the academic criteria (like the private schools do) have identical high test scores and, often, actually are more highly ranked. You remind me very much of the guy who made the claim that Basis Charter School was proof that public schools should be replaced with charter schools all the while ignoring that University High, a public school in the same city, allowed to use the same policies for screening its students, was also highly ranked in the nation and actually graduated more than a dozen students a year.

    You cherry-pick your information, ignore anything that doesn’t fit within your fraudulent claims, and then you have the guts to call someone else disingenuous? Amazing.

    Posted by: dogmeatib | August 29, 2008 9:30 PM

    I bet yesterday afternoon only a very few McCain supporters even knew who Sarah Palin was. And today she suddenly has enough cred to be a “heartbeat away” from the presidency? Sounds like a bunch of folks desperately clinging to party loyalty in favor of doing what’s best for the country.

    Posted by: jws | August 29, 2008 9:46 PM

    Rightman – I don’t what planet you are living on, but here on Earth the TIDAL wave is running over Senator McCain. Intrade market odds are giving 61 to 38 in favour of Senator Obama (The Economist August 23-9, 2008 p19). -DJ

    Posted by: DingoJack | August 29, 2008 9:46 PM

    Theocracy? Riiiiiight. Show me the quotes where McCain was advocating for a theocracy please.

    The fact that McCain has selected a Pentecostal, anti-choice, anti-gay rights, pro-ID advocate who the religious right absolutely loves is scary enough. The statements that McCain has made over and over again regarding the “Judeo-Christian principles, tradition, values” of our nation (excluding all Judeo-Christians in the process); he has repeatedly separated friends and foes in the international sphere along those lines (including Georgia and Russia recently); and, on top of that, he has openly embraced racist, intolerant religious leaders that he once claimed to despise.

    Far more evidence for the theocracy charge against McCain than there is for the “socialist/communist” and other bogus charges against Obama … yet you refute the one and embrace the other … surprising

    Posted by: dogmeatib | August 29, 2008 9:51 PM

    mroberts:

    If a white preacher said the stuff that Wright does, he would be branded a racist.

    I do not see McCain rejecting Robertson, Dobson, or Warren. They’ve all said much worse things than Wright.

    Posted by: llewelly | August 29, 2008 10:20 PM

    Onkel Bob,

    Your inspection of my service record is not required. Just like your medals and citations, I can take mine down to the local bar and get a few drinks out of the other vets and those who feel patriotic, but I would never pretend that just because I served in combat and came back it somehow means I get to call the rest of the Americans idiots. (People who wag there service record around remind me of last seas

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