Friday, November 07, 2008

Blaming Palin

This is what I’m talking about. Just a few days after losing the election, and some “unnamed” McCain aides have begun their attempts to throw Sarah Palin under the bus. Yesterday, I said the conservative revolution is about to begin, and now we see the old guard of the republican party fighting back. They want to retain control and since Palin is one of us, they have to destroy her before any hint of 2012 support gains hold.

I was never 100% comfortable with Palin’s qualifications, but I argued that she wasn’t any less qualified than Obama. This argument was never countered by the Obama supporters. And now the McCain folks want to blame Palin for the loss. I disagree.

For one, without Palin the conservative base would have never rallied around McCain. Personally, I would have voted for him but there would have been zero enthusiasm. McCain is simply not a conservative. But Palin energized the conservatives across the country to the point that I – for the first time ever – actually gave money to a campaign and put a sign in my yard. I’m not saying that conservatives would have voted for Obama, but I am saying the turnout for McCain would have been smaller without Palin.

The other thing is obvious. Just look at the poll numbers. Before Palin, McCain was trailing. After Palin, he was leading and this lead was approaching double digits. Then the financial crisis hit and McCain’s campaign completely fell apart. The man who tried to paint himself as a conservative all of a sudden became a populist. Folks, populism isn’t something conservatives are warm to. It’s one small step away from liberalism. Not once did McCain mention the Community Reinvestment Act. Not once did he mention that Joe Biden voted for deregulation of the industry (McCain, on the other hand, did not) and Bill Clinton signed it into law. Not once did he mention bad economic decisions by home buyers. Instead, he parroted the “Wall Street greed” mantra and it left us conservatives wondering if we actually had a dog in this fight. He allowed Obama to lay the blame for the mortgage meltdown on the Republicans and did nothing to counter the argument. He suspends his campaign to go to Washington and then votes for a bill loaded with pork barrel spending – something he has argued passionately against. All of this is not Palin’s fault. While he was trying to find his footing on the matter she was drawing crowds triple the size of his. She was the only one who talked about “living within our means”.

During the third debate, he mentioned Warren Buffett as a potential treasury secretary. What? Buffett is another Soros. What about Romney? And why on earth didn’t McCain bring up the Reverend Wright issue? Why didn’t he discuss Dodd and Frank, and the loads of money given to them and to Obama by Fannie Mae? There were many mistakes made in this campaign, but choosing Palin wasn’t one of them.

When unnamed staffers start making ridiculous assertions I immediately toss them aside. If someone doesn’t have the sack to go on record, then they have no credibility with me. So I think it’s ridiculous to claim that Palin thought Africa was a country, and she didn’t know what nations made up North America. Are you kidding me? This is the most popular and, arguably, the most successful governor in the country. This is not a dumb woman and any attempt to paint her as such will be met with a huge backlash from the conservative base. The liberals may believe it because they want to believe it, but we know better. Attacking Palin is nothing more than assigning blame for a poorly-run campaign.

I won’t pretend that Sarah Palin had a vast wealth of Washington knowledge. She didn’t. And she clearly lacked political experience. So what? What she brought was strong judgment and a demonstration of conservatism. She lived it. This woman risked her career to blow the whistle on political and corporate corruption and her tenure as governor has been marked by a constitutent-before-party principle. She is a problem solver with loads of charisma and charm, backed by sound judgment when confronted with tough choices. Those are qualities that we need in Washington.

The problem is that often people like her are so turned off by the nastiness in politics that they lose the stomach for it. See Condi Rice for another example. Whether or not Palin will be back is up for debate, but I think it’s shameful for any Republican to blame her for the failures of the McCain campaign. And if John McCain is the man I think he is, he will come out and condemn these attacks.


Anonymous said...


Welcome to the 21st century. I can only caution you that if you persist w/ 20th century political and social models, you will be disappointed.

First, if you believe tha there will be a conservative revolution, I think you are more starry eyed than any idealist who may have voted in this election.

I do not believe that conservatism is dead. I think it will remian a political force to varying degrees from election to election. I just don't think it will ever rise to a majority for at least another generation, if then.

Realistically, things will have to be very far in the toilet for that to happen. In other words, like they are now.

I think you spoke earlier of kicking the old GOP standard bearers to curb and poltically, that is probably necessary for the GOP. Nevertheless, conservatives in this country are not a majority and in order to make inroads on control of congress or the White House, conservatives have to attract moderates and swing voters.

Therein lies your challenge. How do you attract those voters w/ a doctrinaire rigid ideology.

One could argue credibly that Obama would not have been elected w/o the current economic crisis--one could argue that.

I can argue credibly that the invasion of Iraq was George W. Bush's political plan to remain in power. We are loathe to change horses in the middle of a stream if the stream is a war.

Ronald Reagan also came into office after a period of both internal economic turmoil and foreign policy crisis.

Even though President Reagan has been canonized by both conservatives and the GOP, he was in fact much more moderate and restrained than the latest group in power who named themselves neoconservatives. Let us also remember the low points of his administration, like Iran-Contra and the S&L fiasco--another product of reckless deregulation.

Ronald Reagan's in the cold, cold ground. Even if some of his ideas remain vibrant the conditions that allowed him to be elected are part of history.

Currently, we seem to be in the midst of the greatest governmental intervention since FDR was president and I think that both of us believe it is necessary.

How it pans out remains to be seen, but trumpeting, "Smaller government, lower taxes, " and th erest of the conservative mantra poses no solutions to the current situation.

I fact, as I have argued b/f, the current economic crisis could not have occurred w/o "conservative" deregulation of banks. (See the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Finance Moderization Act of 1999).

Certainly, it is unfair to throw Srah Plain under the bus but unlike you, I saw Sarah Plain as pasrt of John McCain's problem, not his solution.

To Governor Palin, I send a reminder that a lot of "real" Americans voted on Tuesday and they did not vote for John McCain or her.

Absent a crisis or war, if the conservatives want the GOP to regain political power, you need a bigger tent. If you have a series of litmus tests to enter that tent, it is going to remain the size it is now.

In addition, it would seem that the usaual conservative principles are not lamps that will light the path outof this mswamp.


John Washburn said...

Loop, what exactly do you mean when you refer to 21st century politics? Do you mean record breaking $600 million in fund raising, much of it untraceable? Or do you refer to the supposed inclusiveness of the Liberal agenda that tells me I am not welcome because I follow the teachings of Christ and I am a self-made white heterosexual male? In my mind, Marxist ideas are 19th century and have been proven as an oppressive failure.

Conservatism tells us that the traditional family is the healthiest, both for the individual and for society. My medical background has confirmed that and I have the statistics to back it up. Should I ignore this in order to be more appealing to a growing Leftist trend and appear more “inclusive”?

On the domestic side, Conservatism tells us that government is an ineffective, inefficient means of solving problems; that government cannot create wealth nor can it create jobs and economic prosperity. But government can most definitely cause economic despair and worsening unemployment. We’re not insensitive because we’re against spending tax dollars to solve domestic problems, we’re just practical people who really do want to SOLVE these problems. We don’t adhere to this idea because it’s our theory. We adhere to it because of lessons learned. Whether we’re talking about healthcare, retirement, poverty, drug abuse, teenage pregnancy, crime, hunger, education, unemployment or any number of issues – name one thing where government programs actually solved the problem. Is there a single success story that we can all point to and say thank goodness the government stepped in? FDR’s New Deal failed to end the Great Depression and that was the epitome of government-intervention-to-solve-a-problem legislation. Yet, I can reel off many things that were solved by the free market. Conservatives want the government to play a minimal role in our lives because we know that throughout history it’s been government that denies people their liberty. The more the government intrudes in our lives, the less liberty we have. I can apply that to any domestic issue whether it be college education or healthcare.

On foreign policy, Conservatism says that American interests come first, and that the top priority of any government is to protect its citizens at any and all costs. There are many examples of success here. Yet, can you name one success that came about from an internationalist position? Again, we have our beliefs and those beliefs are strengthened and affirmed throughout history.

Perhaps conservatives will become fringe. What a sad and desperate country that will be. Imagine if no one urged family values; no one fought against government over-reach; no one stressed the need for moral restraint; no one stood up to defend the nation from attackers (what percentage of the military is liberal?); no one argued for self-responsibility over government dependence. Is that a country you want to live in? I will not apologize nor retreat from my conservative principles because maybe the country as a whole is lurching Left. That tells me that America needs conservatives more than ever. As I said, we are the only hope America has. If conservatism dies, then so does morality, statesmanship, service-before-self, the American family, and, dare I say, liberty.

If you’re somehow suggesting that conservatives should “get on board” with the rest of America, then no thanks; that is, if the rest of America is rejecting conservative principles. I know the outcome there and I don’t want to be any part of it. Instead, I’ll sit back and let others have a taste of liberalism/populism/Marxism/socialism and the resulting inevitable conclusion. That’s when conservatism will re-emerge as the people’s choice. It happened before and it will happen again. Government breeds misery – much more so than any misery from free market capitalism - and this lesson has to be refreshed from time to time.

Anonymous said...

The only reason she can't be blamed is because she doesn't know she's an idiot. The people responsible are the Republican leaders, in more ways than one. First, for selecting her, when she was clearly someone who didn't know her way around high-level politics, and secondly for doing such a bad job for the past eight years, allowing an easy Democratic victory.

Dan Trabue said...

Imagine if no one urged family values; no one fought against government over-reach; no one stressed the need for moral restraint; no one stood up to defend the nation from attackers (what percentage of the military is liberal?); no one argued for self-responsibility over government dependence. Is that a country you want to live in?

The difference then, between "us" and "you" is that you don't realize that these are ALL things that liberals are struggling for.

1. We want family values - for ALL families (by family values, I would include, respect, wholesome living, loving relationships, honesty, integrity, etc, etc - conservatives don't have a corner market on these values, and ELECTED conservatives seem to have LESS a handle on what these mean than the population at large).

2. We are VERY opposed to gov't overreach. See the opposition to Iraq invasion, see the opposition to torture/waterboarding, see the opposition to free speech infringments and constitutional violations.

3. We DO encourage moral restraint. See all of the above and more.

4. We ARE standing up against terrorism. Wherever it occurs (even if it's our own country).

5. No one is encouraging dependence upon gov't.

This is part of the reason, I believe, why Palin's approach is a failed one. The whole pretension that "WE" are the moral ones and if you're not with us, you're a socialist, a friend of terrorists, a person of ill repute. The politics of division would be part of what I would believe (hope) is part of a bygone era.

I need not agree with conservatives nor expect that they agree with me, but I also need not demonize them and assume that if they don't agree with me, they hate families, they hate gays, they hate our nation, etc, etc.

THAT is why Palin is unelectable. Or at least one reason. (Her general ignorance being another.)

Dan Trabue said...

I said:

The whole pretension that "WE" are the moral ones and if you're not with us, you're a socialist, a friend of terrorists, a person of ill repute. The politics of division would be part of what I would believe (hope) is part of a bygone era.

It's part of the reason why there was world-wide rejoicing, I'd suggest. We've had enough of the gov't by the holier than thou - especially when they're not.

Anonymous said...

Check the Pollster numbers at the below link...I think it WAS Palin.



The Franklin Raines, Jim Johnson, Chris Dodd, Barney Frank 'Team' that bankrupted the big banks with sub-prime, blame Bush!

That's History, Amuse Yourselves.

When Obama's 'Dream Team' Fail To Deliver On Obama's Expensive Candy-Give-Aways, fail to Chill Ahmadinejad's Ambitions, and a Refreshed and Ambitious G.O.P. regain a few lost seats because of 'grassroots disappointments' perhaps the Two-Party System will survive after all!!!

'Moderation In The Pursuit of Justice Is No Virtue'...and that Pioneer Lady Governor Is A Sweet, Refreshing Gemstone In The Rough...another Maggie Thatcher!

The anonymous punks that throw cheap-shots will always be miserable political lounge-lizards on the fringes of smear-town U.S.A. They shudder in fear of the great and talented ladies that might spank them! reb

Anonymous said...

snake hunters sez,

Two Years Of...

"Failed Obama Policy" and the GOP will regain those lost seats in 2010, and Loop Garoo's forecast of "another generation" for Conservatives will be shattered.

Too Many Unkept Pie-In-The-Sky-Promises will expose them to the serious grass-roots citizen. By then, we will all have learned a bitter lesson about Failed Socialism.

The Two-Party System Lives On!


Anonymous said...


My point is not to encourage the abandonment of traditional values but to encourage the abandonment of old political models which lack the capacity to address 21st century issues.

The economic meltdown that begain w/ the subprime fiasco is a global problem. All we can do for the most part is to address that problem domestically although certain international financial agreements will probably be beneficial.

Sometimes I think you have retreated too far into your roots and believe that your are living in the antebellum south.

FDR's New Deal may have not ended the Great Deoression--it took the production required by WW II to accomplish that--but there is no question it radically decreased unemployment and benefited the lives of American citizens. Look for the infrastructure aspect of the next stimulus package to do the same thing.

The problem w/ your way of thinking is twofold. First, it is too exclusionary. "My (Our) way or the highway." "Only people Sarah Plain considers to be real Americans need apply."

Continue along those lines and conservatives will marginalize themselves. Along those lines, stop perceiving the world in such labelistic terms. You can adhere to your own values w/o thinking that anyone who disagrees w/ you is "liberal" or "left" or "Marxist."

By the way, check out an article called "Red Sex, Blue Sex" that appeared in a recent New Yorker Magazine. It's about teenage pregnancy among Evagelicals. Just Google the title.

Secondly, what is our government supposed to do now? Nothing? Or should it attempt to make our lives "better" by atttempting to unfreeze the credit markets?

robert m.

Good point. I cannot help but wonder whether you have moderated your thoughts about the free market being the best method of market control in light of what occurred w/ subprime mortgages?

snake hunters sez nothing worth reading anymore.

It's like this reb. National and state elections are won by the side w/ whom moderate and swing voters side. Those voters have rejected the politics of the Bush GOP. B/c the GOP and Bush draped themselves in the mantle of conservatism--when arguably or actually they were not--it will take a generation for Conservatism to recover. This has nothing to do w/ whether the GOP may gain seats if Obama is unsuccessful dragging us out of the current economic morass.

The moderate and swing voters will not say to themselves,"Golly gee, we should now become Conservatives." They will say, "These guys did not do a good job, let's give the other guys a chance."

But I do request you pull your cranium out of your fundament on one point. Your take on Barack Obama has been so wrong since you made up your mind about him.

You just don't get it so I will tell you. Barack Obama is an ambitious, resourceful, experienced, and if need be cunning Chicago pol. He beat Hillary Clinton and he beat the GOP. It wasn't an accident.

If he can do that, he can probably govern better that the last guy.

Wake up. It's morning in America again.



Loopie Words: "He (Obama) beat Hillary Clinton and he beat the GOP". Well, not exactly! He had a little help from the Chicago Machine Politics, plus assorted billionaires, plus a lot of white-skinned folks that were eager to turn the page on ugly racial tensions. Gen Colin Powell would have been a far superior choice. He chose not to run; it's a man-killer dirty job.

More Loopie Words: "John, Welcome to the 21st Century." It seems that our lawyer friend from Denver never tires of ridiculing people with a different perspective. That's Arrogance, Personified!

Wake up, and Grow up, Tony. reb

Anonymous said...

Go back to bashing Muslims, reb. It better suits your abilities.



Gee thanks, Garoo-sum! But I don't "bash 'em",
but I do turn a spot-light on them.

Poor Loopie Is Missing An Admirer
from France in my comment section.

Val is back Garoo (!) plus an Irish Catholic with a European Nasty Attitude. Check out Val's
comments, then fly away to PoorPas,
where your friends all meet to exchange vulgarities & hate-bush par-ley-voooos. Nice Crowd. reb

John Washburn said...

Dan, there are so many contradictions in your comment that I don’t know where to begin. Point by point:

“We want family values, for ALL families”. Your phrasing suggests that you don’t agree with me that the traditional, 2 parent (one mother, one father) family is the healthiest. Please correct me if I’m wrong. But if I’m right then I think you’re misinformed. Divorce and illegitimacy have greatly damaged our children. I can go on and on about developmental and behavioral problems that occur, not to mention the lasting psychiatric problems that have been linked to lacking parental influence. There isn’t much data on homosexual parenting, but I can say that having balanced gender role models is important. This isn’t “holier than thou”, this is science. It’s no coincidence that children have become more violent, more sexual, more prone to depression and anxiety disorders and more likely to engage in drug and alcohol abuse. The traditional family is the healthiest for children and that’s why we advocate for it.

“VERY opposed to government overreach”. Actually, you’re only opposed to certain aspects of government overreach. You have no problem with suppressive taxation, the government discriminating against me because I happen to be more successful than my neighbor. You have no problem with the fairness doctrine and suppressing free speech on the radio. You have no problem with union card check. You have no problem enacting “green laws” that raise energy costs based on incomplete science. You have no problem subsidizing corn and sugar for the benefit of local farmers. If I’m wrong, again please correct me, I was just pointing out some discrepancies.

“We DO encourage moral restraint”. So what are you encouraging by handing out condoms in school? For that matter, how does that correlate with your opposition to government overreach? Then again, if these kids had parents then it wouldn’t be necessary for the schools to do these things. Perhaps you don’t think premarital sex is immoral. So just to clarify, a few yes or no questions. Is it immoral for an adult to have sex with a child? Is it immoral for a male to abandon his children? Is it immoral to have an abortion? Is it immoral to engage in adultery? Is it immoral to not support your family even though you are physically able? Is it immoral to immerse yourself in debt? Just looking for clarification.

“We ARE standing up against terrorists”. I was simply making the point that the vast majority of the military is conservative and without conservatives there would be fewer people willing to make that sacrifice. And, for the record, this country didn’t start standing up against terrorism until a conservative was elected President.

“No one is encouraging dependence on the government”. No. You’re just wanting to give people free healthcare, free college education, free daycare, government-sponsored retirement, food stamps, welfare, government-sponsored employment, government subsidies for locally produced crops, government subsidies for not exporting jobs, and top it all off with government rebate checks paid for by US taxpayers. I’m not sure how you can do all of these things and then say you don’t encourage government dependence.

And it’s not a matter of “holier than thou”. As a conservative, I don’t think I’m any better than anyone else. You like to label us as “exclusive” but that’s unfair. I welcome anybody and everybody who takes care of their business and doesn’t infringe upon me regardless of race, color, religion, sexual preference, gender, nationality and any other pigeon-hole category you can think of. Basically, I expect people to be responsible because when they aren’t it affects me, and that’s a violation of my human rights. If you work hard, behave responsibly, pay your bills, accept responsibility for your actions and your mistakes, help others in need when you can, take care of your family, obey the law and don’t violate my personal space, then you’re a friend of mine. I couldn’t care less about anything else. That’s the core of conservatism – live and let live. And if everyone did these things, there would be no need for all of these government programs that we speak of and there would be no need for the endless legislation that builds every year. Demanding responsible behavior from all individuals is not being “exclusive”.


Teaching Responsibility At Home begins with mature parents. The pot-smoking baby-boomer generation just doesn't get it; and sadly for them, they never will.

It's "Progressivism!"

A Fine Effort Dr John, but I believe you are wasting your Intense Goodwill and fine talent on Dan, Allison...and The Loop Garoo Kid!


Dan Trabue said...

there are so many contradictions in your comment that I don’t know where to begin.

John, there are so many mistakes in your response to me that I don't have time to deal with them all. But very briefly:

1. We DO want family values - good decent wholesome values - for all our families. Is it ideal that there are two parents and two sets of grandparents and extended family for each family? Absolutely. I did not suggest otherwise. Need every family look like that in order to have family values? No, but clearly the more support there is, the more support there is. A tautology.

That we think that single parent families are a blessed thing, too - in spite of not having two parents - and that they are worthy of support and being valued does not take away from family values. That we believe that the evidence is clear that gay and lesbian families can be good wholesome families does not take away from family values.

We believe in family values. For all families.

2. I AM opposed to gov't overreach.

a. I am opposed to free speech interference.

b. I am very suspect of providing tax benefits to agribusiness - although I do think there is obvious value in supporting our farmers as a society and paying them fair market value for the food that we need.

c. I do believe in removing gov't interventions/policies that have subsidized corporations and individuals (motorists, for instance) and that they all begin paying actual costs for their gas and supplies, rather than paying subsidized/discounted prices.

3. You said: And, for the record, this country didn’t start standing up against terrorism until a conservative was elected President.

Ha! Like when Reagan/Bush gave weapons and support to bin Laden and Saddam? Or a number of other dictators/terrorists/thugs? We were opposing propping up terrorists LONG before Bush II came along.

That's all the time I have for now. Suffice to say that you have misrepresented or misunderstood my positions.

Anonymous said...

No point in rspoding to reb who no longer lives in an evidence based reality, however, I must take issue w/ one of John points although I find more than one objectionable.

A number of months ago, John reprinted at my request his opinion regarding how the healthcare delivery system could be could be improved and healthcare made more available. I agreed w/ most of his points.

Nevertheless, the number of people who are responsible and hard working and who do not have healthcare in this country is simply unacceptable and some plan, John's or others, needs to be put into place. Not socialized medicine but some plan.

Obama would do well to defer working on this issue simply b/c vested intersts hae made it so toxic that if his adminiostration tries to tackle it right off the bat, he will be unable to accoplish tasks which are even more pressing.

I am mindful of cost, but John knows better than I the cost to the system when someone goes to the ER b/c they do not have a PCP.


John Washburn said...

Loop, just a few facts:

The latest numbers show 47 million people in this country without health insurance. Of those, 20% are illegal immigrants; 25% are eligible for current government-sponsored programs like medicare, Medicaid and SCHIP; and 40% are in households that make over $50K a year.

That last number is the most staggering. $50K a year may not qualify as wealthy, but it seems to me that it should be enough to afford health coverage if one budgets wisely and watches their spending.

I’ve gone into exam rooms with patients talking on cell phones, only to later tell me that they can’t afford to pay for an additional $50 office visit or a $100 prescription. I constantly struggle with patients who don’t take their blood pressure or diabetes medicine, claiming that high costs are prohibitive, yet they continue to smoke 1-2 packs a day. A pack of smokes is about 5 bucks, over one month’s time that is more than enough to pay for an office visit and a month of blood pressure medicine (which may not be necessary if they stopped smoking). I’ve had an uninsured patient get angry at me for recommending his child be taken to the emergency room (he realized the potential for a large medical bill) for advanced care, only to watch him drive off in a Lexus SUV. Seems to me that car note could go a long way in paying a health insurance premium.

Certainly, there are people who truly can’t afford coverage, but there are also people who can afford it but choose not to. Unfortunately, there’s no way to know what percentage of that >$50K crowd fits into that category.

And of the uninsured, 20% state that the ER is their primary source of medical care. I just don’t get that. A basic office visit for a routine problem is about $50-$80, sometimes as high as $100 for something complicated. But an ER visit, before any tests or Xrays, can easily surpass $800-$1000. I think the first part of any health plan involves educating people that the ER is not for primary care, but for emergencies only. That would save a lot of money right off the bat.

Anonymous said...


A few thoughts. The USA Today article I found stated 15% of the 47 million unisnsure were illegal immigrants but to tell you the truth, I did even figure that illegals were part of the count. My bad.

Whereas I believe all the episodes you have described, are these the lurid anecdotes, or the norm?

I am not going defened the guy in the Lexus but I know what I see in my clients and my employee. They lives their lives w/o luxury and w/ no room for interruption of their income. I know that things can be cut. You can always cut things. But let us assume Lexus man drove a more modest car w/ a lower monthly payment as surely he did own th e car outright. Would that savings alone be enough to pay for H&A insurance? And then there is the matter of deductibles and co pays. At least one of my clients had an H&A policy that was virtually useless b/c it did not cover anything. Its acquisition, however, was her responsibility. She is not a natice English speaker and for her cheaper was better. Well, actually not.

In my opinion, th eweakness in t eMccain plan of granting a tax credit was that it assumed by doing so there would be funds w/ which to pay insurance.


Anonymous said...

The Loop Garoo Hides

Behind T L G K Now

With One-Liner Smears


Desperation Is His Name!


Somewhere In France

Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead. Short days ago We lived,
Felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you, from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Lt Col. John McCrae