More Palin

Well – I’ve continued to scan the news/blogs and I’m STILL excited about Palin.

My only question is her seeming lack of interest in the foreign policy/affairs stuff. However…..now that she’s in the position she’s in, that will be remedied. She’s smart, she’s got good gut instincts, and previous to this she was pregnant and the mother of 5 children and governor of a big state. People focus on what they can and spend their time in the best manner possible. I’m not at all certain that had I been in the same circumstances that I would have been researching what a VP does, or the exact new news in Iraq.

October 2nd. Palin vs Biden. That will tell us a ton.

In the meantime, Ms Palin DOES have the interest in things that she needed to. ie Here is an oped of hers in the NYTimes concerning putting the polar bear on the endangered species list. She’s read the science, not just looked at the fake pictures of polar bears dying while just sitting around on melting ice bergs.

As a result of these efforts, polar bears are more numerous now than they were 40 years ago. The polar bear population in the southern Beaufort Sea off Alaska’s North Slope has been relatively stable for 20 years, according to a federal analysis.

We’re not against protecting plants and animals under the Endangered Species Act. Alaska has supported listings of other species, like the Aleutian Canada goose. The law worked as it should — under its protection the population of the geese rebounded so much that they were taken off the list of endangered and threatened species in 2001.

Listing the goose — then taking it off — was based on science. The possible listing of a healthy species like the polar bear would be based on uncertain modeling of possible effects. This is simply not justified.

Amen!

The biggest problems people have with her is her lack of experience and this coming from a man who is known for “putting country first”. I seriously think he did put country first here. He’s using his instincts for what this country needs and part of what it needs IS change in the old time politics of white protestant men. People are longing for that and Obama’s rise even with his lack of experience is direct evidence of that.

[one of the great things about Palin is that apparently she speaks like a person rather than a politician. This can get her in trouble as we go on, but now it's apparently refreshing. I haven't heard her speak yet]

The troopergate story will get exaggerated, but she must have reassured McCain that her side is the correct side.

There has been some sexist remarks, but even DailyKos women are not putting up with that crap.
The debate will be eye opening. It will have to be civil and Biden will have to hammer her. She will have to respond nimbly. If she can’t, there will be a problem.

Let the learning begin Ms Palin. You seem smart, you’ve clearly got class and you have the ability to speak honestly in the face of crap. [click through for Palin knocking Biden on drilling and basing it on a national security argument]

Be sure to read Mark Steyn today for the fun factor in this. A small bite:

What other country in the developed world produces beauty queens who hunt caribou and serve up a terrific moose stew? As an immigrant, I’m not saying I came to the United States purely to meet chicks like that, but it was certainly high on my list of priorities.

And read Rachel Lucas on the ‘sphere’s best bloggers out there who has recently gone nonpolitical on her blog because of lots of reasons…..she’s baaaack.
There are pictures there – have fun.

UPDATE: I forgot to mention that on that DailyKos open comment link above is tons of talk of how the PUMA’s actually acted so powerful and influential that they convinced McCain to do this knowing full well that they 1) were really a small group and 2) will of course vote for Obama. ROFL

UPDATE 2: One more. The WSJ has a column on Palin vs Big Oil.

“Sarah Palin is pro-development and is supportive of oil and gas development in an environmentally conscious way, but she is very tough on the companies. She doesn’t think that when the state of Alaska leases oil and gas to big oil, it means big oil gets to call all the shots,” says Drue Pearce, an appointee of President George W. Bush who directs the Office of the Federal Coordinator for Alaska Natural Gas Transportation Projects.

Sarah Palin!! Wow

I’ve been laying low for the whole week while I have a friend in town so I’ve missed most of the convention and then went and missed the HUGE news about Sarah Palin.

You realize of course that back in July I suggested that McCain pick a woman for his VP choice. Who knew the influence wielded here??? Palin was certainly one of the women that came up in the scuttlebut and the more I am scanning everything it sounds like she’s going to be a great pick! Hell – it energized ME!

I look forward to the VP debates.
I look forward to the reinvigoration of this election. (that’s JK at the link)
I look forward to having a response to those who know diddly about politics, yet want to vote for Obama because of the historical significance of it. (I can’t blame them – who wouldn’t and now they have a choice)

As a woman – I know tons and tons of smart women who get as ahead in their careers as they want to. I didn’t realize how very, very excited I would be to see a smart woman on a huge ticket here, but whoooooeeeee…..I am ready to start campaigning. And that’s with just a cursory glance at who she is. We know who McCain is. Yeah – whatever, I’ll send him some money.
But Wow!! A female VP!! I’ll make phone calls for this ticket. Bring on the yard signs!

Women don’t vote for women because they are women, however – women do vote smart and well, to see this…..its cool. I know he’s pandering but so what? I’m not insulted by that. It comes with the territory. ie You pick a southerner of you’re a northerner, or if he had picked Huckabee, he would have been pandering to the religious right. Palin IS smart. She IS a matching “maverick”. She doesn’t like pork. She’s not afraid to stand up against power. She knows about and gets energy. He didn’t have to choose her, but he did and I think it was a great choice.

Those who think Hillary was qualified based on being a wife and a senator are loony yet think that Palin is unqualified after being a mayor and governor can not see the irony in that bit of pandering can they?

Now let’s throw in the factor that I pretty much vote on. Character. She appears to me to be a person of great character. What with the nod to the glass ceiling pushers (Ferraro and Clinton), the Bridge to Nowhere response (if we need a bridge here, we’ll build one ourselves) and standing her ground with oil company cheapskates, this woman definitely has character that I admire.

Between Obama and McCain, McCain has good character up the wazoo and he would have gotten my vote easily, but now?, NOW he’s got my attention!

After the GOP convention I’ll compare the planks and let you all know whether I’m still a Democrat or not. Either way – I’m in for McCain bigtime.

From The Corner’s email on this

Simply great pick. The list is endless. Here’s just a few.
Every time the opposition claims she’s not experienced, it points right to the top of the Dem ticket.
She can’t be demonized. Dems succeed by stirring up hatred of their opposition, but it won’t work with Palin. It would be like trying to demonize Kerry Walsh or Misty May Trainor.
She’s made her own way – a classic American success story, with no help from the “establishment”
She’ll completely disarm Biden in the debates. He won’t be able to attack her without a significant backlash. And every attack he attempts will drip of condescending Washington blowhard insiderism
You can’t get more “outside the Beltway” than Alaska.
She’ll really galvanize the pro-life community and is somewhat uniquely able to not just “preach to the choir” but to speak to the other side. She chose life, fully knowing the hardships that can come with a Down syndrome child. She walked the walk. It will touch the hearts of those who have chosen otherwise, or are thinking about it. It could really move the debate forward in a very positive, uplifting way. I am pro-life, but am off-put by some of the aggressive tactics of the pro-life community. In contrast, I am touched to the heart by this woman’s real-life choice of life for her young son. I suspect I will not be alone.
I suspect the money race will be neutralized at worst, and quite possibly turned in our direction. I’ve been sitting on my wallet since 2004, but sent in a contribution to McCain the moment I heard of this pick. I suspect I am far from alone.

The Corner’s been a great site all day. Keep it up.

Russia Started it

We knew Russia started it, we didn’t know how.
Click here and find out. Michael Totten is there and interviewing and has the information you need, along with pictures that take you there.
Go and read it!

Then click on his paypal account or even sign up for monthly contributions and get a subscription. Mr. Totten is bringing you the news you want/need to hear!

[ps - I'm on vacation this week, hence the light blogging]
(ht Tai Chi Policy)

Conclusions from a bigot

This article out of the Telegraph cracked me up.

The author, Charlie Brooks, goes to Ohio to get a feel for voters.

He’s mostly appalled by the people and you can see it in his writing. (which I have to say makes him sound like a bigot to me. Not a racist bigot, but a middle America bigot)

His conclusion after generally hearing people say they’ll vote for the lesser of two evils, they don’t like either, they don’t care, they don’t think Obama’s experienced enough, they’re “turned off” by politics and one eighteen year old girl who thinks her neighbors secretly won’t vote for a black man:

Ultimately, how Ohio swings will depend on whether the first-time voters dreaming of “hope” outnumber the closet bigots who say “nope”. Based on what I’ve seen, I’m going with “nope”.

That’s right. Out of all the people he talked with, one eighteen year old girl thinks it’s about race, ergo, it is Mr. Brook’s conclusion that Obama will not be elected due to racism.

No judging here…now move along

It’s a Friday calf blog day, so I won’t take up too much of your time with other stuff, but I would be remiss if I didn’t at least point out a standard view from the left.

“Do not judge [unless it's judging America, or Christians, or Conservatives], because all is equivalent”

I’m a judger, and I wouldn’t say it’s my best feature. So I work to not be that way. However – if you’re going to run for president, people have to vote on you based on their judgement. They look at how you judge things and go from there.

Let’s just take a moment:
On Russia…
The Russian invasion of Georgia is similar to the US in Iraq. Here’s Obama.

“We’ve got to send a clear message to Russia and unify our allies,” Obama told a crowd of supporters in Virginia. “They can’t charge into other countries. Of course it helps if we are leading by example on that point.”

Here’s an excellent partial comment:

Despite Russian claims, no parallels exist between U.S. Iraq involvement and Russian Georgian aggression. With that and other pretexts Putin unilaterally attacked into Georgia, after NATO membership rejection portended a flaccid response. In contrast the United States, heading a U. N. coalition exceeding that Churchill and Roosevelt assembled to confront Hitler’s Germany, toppled Hussein’s regime, forcing the U.N. to confront the reason for its’ existence.

On China…..

:”Everybody’s watching what’s going on in Beijing right now with the Olympics. Think about the amount of money that China has spent on infrastructure. Their ports, their train systems, their airports are vastly the superior to us now, which means if you are a corporation deciding where to do business you’re starting to think, ‘Beijing looks like a pretty good option.’”

[Let's not look much closer or we may have to make judgments.]
I suppose all that Chinese “infrastructure” that always seems to crumble during a 6.0 earthquake was built by union waged engineers and workers. Right? I suppose, the people decided that having all this was important and voted in the proper representatives to get this stuff done too. Right?

Exactly.

Abortion – when the doctor screws it up and you’re left with a live baby……

“Essentially adding an additional doctor who then has to be called in an emergency situation to come in and make these assessments is really designed simply to burden the original decision…”

“to burden the original decision….”
That’s right – don’t judge the leaving of children in a broom closet to die alone because they were supposed to be aborted.

After you’re born I believe the constitution says you have a right to be living. And I believe most statutes will agree that children are allowed to be a burden to the state if the parents don’t want them.

Consumerism

Apparently, it’s bad and the government should help us to be rid of it.

Why is it bad? Because it uses up precious resources and spews out pollutants.
And get this:

“We have been living beyond our means, and the consequences are evident all across the planet,” says Global Footprint Network Executive Director Mathis Wackernagel, the 45-year-old, Swiss-born economist who helped design the group’s consumption metric. “As we move deeper into ecological deficit, the risks are tremendous — prices go up, supplies collapse, conflicts arise and the environment’s ability to recover greatly diminishes.” Wackernagel points to recent food riots in Haiti, Egypt, Bangladesh and elsewhere and ever-rising gas prices in the U.S. as examples of the political and economic disruption that sudden, rising demand can precipitate.

Is that amazing or what? The US is the BIG consumer. The US is a free nation. Haiti, Egypt, Bangladesh all have very, very, very low carbon footprints. Haiti, Egypt, Bangladesh are not what I would call “free democratic societies”. Haiti, Egypt, Bangladesh have food riots caused by consumerism. ???? huh???

I read that paragraph 3 times.

Check this out:

Among his pet peeves, Maniates often tells audiences, are the ubiquitous lists promising “10 Simple Things to Save the Planet.” There are no simple things, he insists, unless you care to consider these: 1) Get rid of your car; 2) consume only locally grown organic foods; and 3) stop buying stuff you don’t need.

Ok – he’s talking about saving “The Planet” here, right. To do that, somehow we are supposed to essentially not invest in the planet. Only buy local or don’t buy at all. That may save your budget. It may save a bit of carbon, but how on earth will that help out “The Planet”?

I’m sure you want to know how Maniates would fix this. Well, lets look to the government, shall we

“When our leaders acknowledge the problem and engage us all in finding a solution, there will be no shortage of ideas and innovation,” Maniates suggests. We must recycle more, invest in alternative energies and commit to public transportation, he says. Also, the government could tax consumption, rather than income — and the list goes on. But Maniates and others believe a lasting solution requires more than simply taxing undesirable choices (like SUVs and luxury goods) and offering incentives for desirable ones (like solar energy and organic farming). Real change — steep declines in per-capita consumption of energy and raw materials — will occur when Americans are allowed to choose lifestyles that initiate low-consumption patterns of behavior. Invariably, those lifestyles are the consequence of trading a degree of work (and pay) for time — a tradeoff that Maniates and others say plenty of Americans are willing to make. The equation is simple: Less work = less money = less consumption.
Maniates says government must make it easier for workers to make those choices: “We need to allow people to do the right thing — policy measures that allow them to follow their noses to happiness and satisfaction.”

I actually like a consumption tax vs income, but who in the government is capable of determining “good behavior” vs “bad behavior” for taxing purposes and why on earth should type A people who want to work more be subsidizing part timers insurance so that they can then go sit on their duffs and not consume? Oh – yeah – to save “The Planet”.

One more bizarre, not well thought out quote from this article:

Keep in mind, our government pays us to go shopping; why would it suddenly encourage parsimony?

Yes, Mr. Maniates thinks that the government giving you back the money that was taken from you by the government is the equivalent of the government paying you to shop.

I actually like to live very very simply. I ride the bike, I walk places, I live in a tiny tiny house and I really hate to shop. I would love to work part time in order to play full time, but I realize that yes, I need health insurance and it’s expensive and I don’t really think you should buy it for me. (Plus who would plug in all those numbers and move them around if I weren’t at work??)
It’s a whole movement that is growing and will probably continue to grow. Naturally. Not by decree.

The government does not exist to keep us in line with what Mr. Maniates believes is the better way to live. (click through to the article so you can follow Mr. Maniates better way to live tricks of the small consumer) The government can’t legislate itself out of a hole in the ground.

Live as you wish. Just don’t ruin public property for me and don’t go trying to start wars with us or disobeying the laws here that exist to keep things fairish. That’s what the govt is there for.

(ht A thinking reed)

Separation of Church and State

Yes, the Constitution requires

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . .”

In other words, the state is to stay out of religion.

That doesn’t mean there is no interest or even should not be any interest in what a candidate for President believes.
Those ARE the important things.
From Kathleen Parker today in the WAPO:

At the risk of heresy, let it be said that setting up the two presidential candidates for religious interrogation by an evangelical minister — no matter how beloved — is supremely wrong.

It is also un-American.

Wrong and un-American to be questioned by a person who has specific interests in the answers to the questions? She says:

This is about higher principles that are compromised every time we pretend we’re not applying a religious test when we’re really applying a religious test.

“Religion” is a majority part of many people’s lives. By understanding where one stands on things like good and evil you get an understanding of that person. No one pretends there is no religious test in people’s minds concerning the presidency. It’s one of many, many tests.

How does this person agree with me or think like me, because obviously, I’m right and if I were king of the world……
You don’t vote for someone who believes in things that are counterintuitive or anti what you believe in. [I take that back....sometimes you have to because no one is going to agree with you 100%.] You take a look at all aspects of the candidates and make your judgment.

That’s what the election is about. Making judgments. If you don’t have any information about one of the foundations of a person’s principles, how do you make the judgment? Wouldn’t you have wanted to at least know that Reagan believed in astrology?

Wanting to know doesn’t make you un-American. By george I think she has questioned my patriotism!!

On a side note……all of you doofus’s accusing McCain of making up the story of the cross in the sand
because you’ve seen it someplace else need to buy a clue about religion. Christians the world over have given indications to each other, the world over, about what they believe. This is done especially in trying circumstances where their Christianity can not be expressed openly.

You may choose to believe McCain is exaggerating, but chances are very good that it’s true. [unlike the sniper fire in Bosnia ala Clinton]