Friday, September 05, 2008
Yesterday, I said that, " a little lipstick might go a long way in this year's presidential pageant," and I was right, as I learned through a hurricane blogger this morning.
In an article titled, "McCain Haters for McCain", Randall Hoven of The American Thinker echoes many other conservatives in his enthusiasm for John McCain's pick for Vice President, taking Sarah Palin as a new incarnation of Ronald Reagan:
If McCain were trying to morph the Republican Party into Democrat-Lite, I would not vote for him. He could have demonstrated that by picking a Vice President like Joe Lieberman. Nothing wrong with Joe, but he's not a Republican. He thinks life is improved through government programs. Republicans think government usually is the problem, not the solution.Each of the bolded points in the last paragraph above speaks to why the authoritarian, anti-freedom John McCain chose someone who projects something different as possible from his and Obama's shared governing philosophy, as I explained in detail yesterday.
But McCain did not pick Joe Lieberman or anyone like that. He picked Sarah Palin.
And that changed everything.
Sarah Palin is pro-freedom, pro-life, pro-gun, anti-tax, anti-spending. And she walks the walk. Her life story is pure American -- even old-time, frontier American. We can compare experience levels in years of "public service": her 12 to Barack Obama's 11. But more importantly, Obama's experience consists mostly of missing a lot of votes so he could write a second autobiography and make speeches, while Palin's includes negotiating a gas pipeline deal with Canada and confronting Big Oil face-to-face and making it blink. [bold added]
Hoven is a religious conservative and, although he wrote a pretty good piece about how an Obama presidency would not necessarily be the end of the world, his own reasons for disliking McCain are a mixed bag. Furthermore, his religious premises probably help blind him to the fact that if he's worried about the Republican Party morphing into "Democrat Lite", he is worse than too late to start worrying on McCain's account. Be that as it may, I think his reaction to having Sarah Palin on the ticket is a typical one that proves that the pick is a cunning one.
If individual freedom is a genuine concern for Hoven, he should reconsider his enthusiasm for the McCain-Palin ticket. Palin, whose popularity may (according to Matt Drudge) exceed Obama's, could well duplicate Reagan's feat of appealing to Americans enough to deliver the White House to the GOP. But if she does so, she will have helped a GOP that now doesn't even pretend to be a party interested in governing properly.
Americans will respond to Palin healthily on an emotional, pro-freedom level. I find her likable, too. Unfortunately, most of my coutrymen grasp the nature of freedom so poorly that they will fail to see how Palin's own political philosophy (not to mention her decision to support McCain) is incompatible with that very freedom.
In the "audacity of hope" game, Obama is a piker. McCain just schooled him -- by taking in anyone who wasn't satisfied with Obama's particular smoke and mirrors act.
The GOP has proven -- and Hoven seems at times close to grasping this fact -- that it does not care about individual rights. In this light, the fact that it may have found a way to win power yet again is anything but reassuring to me.