I am watching Palin giving her latest stump speech filled with lies. She questions Obama’s ability to be President from day one. Does she really think he isn’t prepared and she is? I loved the Colin Powell statement about her, “I don’t believe she’s ready to be President of the United States, which is the job of vice president.” Guess he answered that nagging question for her about what the VP does. And he clearly has no doubt that Obama is ready from day one.
The new buzzwords McCain/Palin are tossing about are a bit strange, too. Socialism is not the bogeyman it once was according to a lot of experts. People want their government to take care of them in real terms, not just take care of the corporate few. A decent health care system is not frightening, nor is retooling our infrastructure or maintaining a realist military. And furthermore, Palin’s choice to continue with her hateful “we’re American and you aren’t” spiel at her rallies is not bringing the ticket more voters either. Their popularity is going down the drain, yet they continue the robocalls, the outright lies and the vitriole, now adding the faux socialism threat.
I listen to her and wonder how anyone at these rallies could actually still be so uninformed. She has now added to the Joe the plumber army with “Jane the engineer and Molly the dental hygienist and Chuck the teacher.” Her current favorite who I have heard her mention at least 4 times now is a Tito the builder from Colombia (the country, not the University.) It is beginning to sound like a Saturday morning cartoon line-up. But I guess this is the tone that they think appeals to their base. It may be sad but true.
Meanwhile, Joe the talker Biden furnished them with a new talking point. “Mark my words,” Biden said Sunday, “Watch, we’re going to have an international crisis, a generated crisis, to test the mettle of this guy. I promise you it will occur. As a student of history and having served with seven presidents, I guarantee you it’s going happen. I can give you at least four or five scenarios from where it might originate.” The fact is that according to many experts he is probably right but he failed to note specifically that the same may be true if McCain is anointed. The Republicans are now running with their new “Obama is going to get us attacked” scenario. I hope that no one falls for it.
To Palin’s mantra about there being certain places in our country where you find real Americans, add last week’s interview with Michelle Bachman calling for investigations into Anti-American Activities and North Carolina Congressman Robin Hayes’ saying that “Liberals hate real Americans that work and accomplish and achieve and believe in God,” and we have all the fixin’s for a really nice culture war. I only hope that these people are some day soon forced to see what they have done.
Social Democrat Senator Bernie Sanders noted on Bill Mayer’s show this week that this kind of hate-monger campaigning means that whatever the outcome of the election, millions of people in this country will feel either that we have a terrorist-loving socialist in the White House or else someone who truly detests everything about “liberals” and big city folk representing us around the world. Either scenario is the prescription for a horrible future for us all.
There was a moment last week when I thought that McCain had grown the balls to stand up to his party and distance himself from the dirty politics he denounced in the 2000 race when he was the butt of their lies. Shortly after losing the 2000 election, McCain told an interviewer that there must be “a special place in hell” reserved for the rumormongers. Seven years later, who is running McCain’s campaign? The same folks who smeared him in 2000. If you can’t beat them, hire them–even if they’ve launched racist attacks against your own daughter. McCain just last week seemed to want to calm his hate-filled crowd if only for a moment, telling some of his rally attendees that Obama was not someone they should fear in the White House. But unfortunately (if somewhat predictably) that was just a hiccup in the GOP steamroller. And I betcha anything that the Rove machine took him aside and sold him on the “take no prisoners” tactics they will be employing to the final days of their campaign.
Despite the polling, I am worried that they will come up with something so low and dirty that they will turn the tide. I can’t imagine what it is, but I know they have things in their arsenal that only those evil Rovians could conjure up.