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Impulse Purchase

Just a quick note regarding McCain's selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate. This may have seemed like a good idea on paper--appeal to disgruntled Hillary voters, add a "change" component to the McCain platform, etc.--but I'm betting it's going to backfire big time.

As many have pointed out, Palin has little experience. Some argue that this works for Democrats: now McCain can not longer belittle Obama for same; others say that it works for McCain: if anyone questions Palin's experience, they'll take those quotations and run them in an ad featuring Obama's smiling mug.

So who will Palin's lack of experience ultimately favor? I say Obama--but not for the reasons everyone has seized on.

Democrats will assert that Palin's inexperience is an issue because she'll assume office if McCain dies ... and that gives them license to talk about the likelihood of such scenario. Expect incessant talk about McCain's age and his health, two topics that were largely taboo before. After all (Dems will argue), they aren't bringing up McCain's age to denigrate him--that would be a nasty personal attack, after all--but simply as something to consider when discussing Palin.

Even if the Obama inexperience v. Palin inexperience slugfest winds up as a draw, the age thing will linger. And in the final equation, Americans vote for a President, not a Vice-President. I don't think the McCain campaign thought this selection all the way through to the bitter (if cynical) end, and they are going to have buyers remorse real quick-like.

Posted on August 29, 2008 to Politics


Another problem is that it's such a clear political choice that it's bound to reflect poorly on McCain. Palin has literally no redeeming value, and quite a few blemishes on her record (just take a quick look at her wikipedia page). It's insulting to Clinton voters' intelligence that he actually think they'll fall for that kind of BS.

Posted by: Noam Samuel on August 29, 2008 11:14 AM

the best thing i've read all day -

"does mccain know that if palin gets hurt or is in a car accident or something, he can't trade her in for a hotter, younger VP?"

Posted by: janeen on August 29, 2008 11:20 AM

I just keep thinking that there's no way McCain made this call, and Gepetto is somewhere behind him pulling the strings. One more example of special interests calling the shots. The Maverick is no more.

Posted by: Candy on August 29, 2008 12:16 PM

And now, no matter who wins, the 2008 election will be a "historic event". One wonders if that was the only critia for choosing her. To make sure that no matter which presidential canadate you vote for, the election will be a "historic event". I the McCain camp worried that people will vote for Obama just so that they can make history by voting a black man into the white house and that by making McCain's VP Sarah Palin they are wooing the "make history' voters away from Obama?

Posted by: Richard Shaffstall on August 29, 2008 12:21 PM

"And in the final equation, Americans vote for a President, not a Vice-President."

I don't know about that. McCain needed a solid conservative pick for VP and a lot of the names being floated did nothing to excite the base. Palin excites the base like few others could.

The pundits keep saying "most Americans have never heard of Sarah Palin", but most Americans couldn't name our current Vice President so that doesn't say much! Some of us have been watching her since 2006...

I agree the age thing will be hammered at by the Obama campaign...they've already released the "heartbeat away from the presidency" talking points. But this can only hurt Obama. Everyone will be comparing his rather thin resume to Sarah Palin's rather thin resume. And McCain will be able to say my VICE President has just as much experience as their presidential nominee.

It would be good for McCain if, as you say, "...the Obama inexperience v. Palin inexperience slugfest winds up as a draw, the age thing will linger. And in the final equation, Americans vote for a President, not a Vice-President." If the Democrats Varsity squad can't beat the Republicans JV squad do you think a majority of Americans will vote for Obama?

In any event, I was completely bored with politics this year....but man is it going to get interesting for the next few months!

Posted by: Duane on August 29, 2008 12:59 PM

...There 5-10 *million* voters out there who were gonna vote Barr, write in Paul, or stay home out of disgust for both campaigns. They now have something new to think about.

Posted by: Ashley on August 29, 2008 1:38 PM

She's the perfect Republican woman -- a cheerful, godly, straight-shooting, beer drinking, make-up wearing, pro-life mama of five. But she's a self-proclaimed feminist who's young and attractive enough that McCain looks very uncomfortable standing next to her.

Also, her youngest kid is an infant with special needs. Don't you think there will be some blowback about how she's "neglecting" him, putting her ambitions ahead of her family? Vietnam doesn't even compare to the unending cruelty and bullshit of the Mommy Wars.

Posted by: ester on August 29, 2008 1:55 PM


"...most Americans couldn't name our current Vice President.."

I would argree with you for most VPs, I think most Americans know Dick Cheney.

Mostly because he shot a man in the face, but still...

Posted by: craig on August 29, 2008 1:58 PM

I was going to vote for Barr, but will now seriously consider McCain/Palin.

Even though the Senate is nothing to sneeze at, Obama hasn't been the top dog in any position. Palin has been a mayor and governor. As governor she also commanded the Alaskan National Guard.

Posted by: lucky henry on August 29, 2008 3:19 PM

> As governor she also commanded the Alaskan National Guard

(visualizing Putin shuddering at the prospect of the Russian military being UTTERLY DECIMATED by the Palin-led Alaskan national guard...)

thanks for the best giggle I've had all week.

Posted by: heehee on August 29, 2008 3:39 PM

So, they'll discuss the "if" of Palin taking office and not expect the "will" of Obama doing same?

There's no way that this argument going further benefits either side, except that at least Palin isn't heading up the ticket with her inexperience.

Advantage: McCain

Posted by: Big J on August 29, 2008 3:48 PM

McCain\Palin is the cognitive dissonance ticket. McCain's whole argument for the entire summer was that Obama was too inexperienced to lead and he's not quite America. You know, comes from a state that's not attached the mainland and has children with funny sounding names. Is he really going to do a 180 and completely change his campaign strategy and line of attack?

In terms of pure politics, I think Palin is a great pick in the short term. She's popular, charming, gives his campaign energy, and may draw in a few people voting solely on gender. In terms of substance, I think this pick makes McCain unfit for the Presidency.

It's like if you gave your friend the keys to your house for the weekend, and when you came back, you find out he sold it for a cotton candy factory.

"Dude, it's cool. It's going to work out. I totally got a plan."
"I DON'T CARE! That was my house. It was *important*."

Posted by: Jason on August 29, 2008 4:14 PM

Seems like a stunt, trying to grab some headlines, without looking at the big picture, but maybe she does gin-up his conservative credentials based on some of the comments here. I won't pretend to understand how conservatives think. I think your analysis on the age thing is good however.

Posted by: Jim in Missoula on August 29, 2008 4:19 PM

All well and good, but watch Hillary squirm :)

Posted by: karan on August 29, 2008 5:05 PM

I think it was a brilliant pick.

Conservatives will love her. She can have all the kids she wants with any special needs and that will only add to her charm. Look at Phyllis Schafly, mother of six, a conservative who made a career and a fortune as an anti-feminist crusader. A true conservative doesn't need experience because God guides them. (God does not guide Democrats so they need all the experience they can get.)

Posted by: kate on August 29, 2008 6:28 PM

Good analysis.

The only thing I can say is every time I hear some pundit utter the phrase "an historic election" I will die a little. A Black guy and a woman? We don't even have to try to mention the issues.

Posted by: Elisabeth on August 29, 2008 6:37 PM

Glad I made you chuckle. Educate me...From what I can see, the only area that Obama has more experience is in foreign policy. Palin trumps him in every other area of experience.

Posted by: lucky henry on August 29, 2008 7:09 PM

Glad I made you chuckle. Educate me...From what I can see, the only area that Obama has more experience is in foreign policy. Palin trumps him in every other area of experience.

Posted by: lucky henry on August 29, 2008 7:13 PM

I agree with DY (and many others) that McCain's choice of Sarah Palin was considerably less than brilliant. My prediction is that about a month from now she will withdraw from the ticket for "personal reasons". Health issue, undiscovered affair, kickbacks from Ted Stevens ... not sure what those personal reasons will be, but Karl Rove will find them.

Posted by: gruve on August 29, 2008 7:14 PM

> From what I can see, the only area that Obama has
> more experience is in foreign policy. Palin trumps
> him in every other area of experience.

And the comedy continues!

This time LH brings the more subtle funny - mistaking "governor of a sparsely populated and isolated state hugely dependent on federal handouts" for "sufficient experience as a political leader to take on the office of the chief executive".

Brilliant! Masterful!

Posted by: heehee on August 30, 2008 7:05 AM

@ester - Are we really able to call her a feminist, though? I know she calls herself one ... but she's proudly part of Feminists For Life (meaning feminists for PRO-Life), and that group seems like a contradiction in terms. I don't generally like to play a good feminist v bad feminist game, but I don't know if it's possible to call yourself a feminist when you are actively seeking to eliminate a woman's rights to her own body. Doesn't that go against the very heart of feminism by taking away a woman's power over herself and her choices?

Posted by: Jenn on August 30, 2008 7:15 AM

@ester - Are we really able to call her a feminist, though? I know she calls herself one ... but she's proudly part of Feminists For Life (meaning feminists for PRO-Life), and that group seems like a contradiction in terms. I don't generally like to play a good feminist v bad feminist game, but I don't know if it's possible to call yourself a feminist when you are actively seeking to eliminate a woman's rights to her own body. Doesn't that go against the very heart of feminism by taking away a woman's power over herself and her choices?

Posted by: Jenn on August 30, 2008 7:16 AM

@Jenn - Sorry for the double post, it didn't look like it had posted the first time.

Posted by: Jenn on August 30, 2008 7:19 AM

Palin is a brilliant choice and here's why: Change is what people want. The Democrat-led congress has a 9% approval rating! Yes, America is headed in the wrong direction. Now Barrack Hussein talks the talk of change, but he doesn't walk the walk. All B.O. has to offer is the same old partisan politics, gridlock, tired tax and spend policies from he 70s. Seriously, he's going to end dependence on foreign oil in 10 years by spending $150B of our tax dollars? That's not change, that's a crock. It's "magical thinking." He's a snake oil salesman and the snake oil is himself. B.O. says he will be a uniter not a divider, he will reach across the aisle. But has he ever reached across the aisle? When has B.O. ever voted against his party? NEVER! Then he picks crusty old Biden for VP? Again, he is just proving to voters that he doesn't offer anything different. It's the same old same old. Obama has convinced us that we want change but he is now convincing us that he's not capable of delivering it. Obama is politics as usual.

In contrast, consider McCain. He is renown for going against his party. People see McCain as not Right against Left, but Right against Wrong. No more politics as usual. McCain has proven that he represents real change. Picking Palin underscores it further. She is also a maverick, routing not just corrupt Democrats, but corrupt Republicans as well. She is another breath of fresh air. She actually walks the walk of change. That's exactly what America needs and exactly what America wants.

Posted by: Greg on August 30, 2008 10:49 AM

Reply to "heehee":

That's correct! Palin is "governor of a sparsely populated and isolated state hugely dependent on federal handouts."

Remind me which state Obama is Governor of? Must be some densely populated central state that refuses federal money.....

You see, Palin is the chief executive of a state. Obama is the chief executive of.....nothing.

Posted by: Anonymous on August 30, 2008 11:27 AM


You're thinking of McCain 2000.
(Where IS that guy? I kind of liked him...)

McCain 2008 picks a running mate that is the usual cookie to the suburban evangelics who were sitting on their hands until now. It was either that or a corporate lackey with lots of money.
It just happens that this year it's a woman.

Posted by: Nom_de_Guerre on August 30, 2008 3:07 PM

Mr. Yeti,

Why do you hate America?

Besides, McCain is at least 400 years younger than Reagan. We don't have to worry about Palin being President. I'm mean, c'mon, she's a woman. Anyone with a vagina is unfit for command. Check your Bibles, you America-hating liberal atheist jew bastards.

Yours in Christ,

Self-righteous Bigot from Middle America

PS: I have to go and sodomize a sheep now.

Posted by: Patriotic Christian Murrican White Male on August 30, 2008 4:27 PM

If Dan Quayle can be vice president, anyone can.

McCain will win anyway. The democrats are just doing the same thing they've done the last 8 years. "Oh, look at all the left wingers in the big cities, they must be EVERYWHERE! We can just run anybody and they'll win!"

They keep forgetting that over half the country is still farmland.

Posted by: Sam on August 30, 2008 5:29 PM

Well gosh, as far as experience goes, she wasn't president of the Harvard Law Review. I just hope that, if elected, Obama (the former law professor) can see his way clear to basic human rights for homosexuals...because the real taboo, i.e., political death, in America is not being Christian. Do they no longer teach American history to American children? Has it gone the way of evolution?
The most important unique advantage the United States has in the world, is that anyone can become American. This does not happen in any other country, if you think you can become French, German, or Russian, you are probably mistaken. Separation of church and state in a democracy, brought to you by intelligent people.
Thanks for mentioning this Matthew, so few bloggers do. We couldn't bear it all the time, but occasionally it's necessary.

Posted by: Mevrouw Haus on August 31, 2008 2:56 AM

Obama/Biden is charisma at the front, experience backing it up.
McCain/Palin is experience at the front, charisma backing it up.

I think Obama/Biden is the better pairing.

Posted by: Adam on August 31, 2008 3:25 AM

Obama/McCain debate.. yawn

Biden/Palin debate.. amusing

Michelle/Cindy debate.. Smackdown '08!

Posted by: bob on August 31, 2008 8:14 AM

wow, i can't tell the satire from reality of these comments.

Posted by: ikes on August 31, 2008 8:39 AM

Palin certainly showed she was a typical Republican as Governor of Alaska by using her office for personal gain. She fired a man who wouldn't fire her ex-brother-in-law, a state trooper who is involved in a custody dispute with Palin's sister. We sure need more of that kind of politics.

Also being Mayor of a town of 9,000 and Governor of one of the least populated states in the country hardly counts as extensive experience. And let's not forget McCain has never been in the executive branch either so it's dangerous for him to be using that argument. Caving in to torture, giving up every secret he knew about the US military, and participating in North Vietnamese propaganda films aimed at our troops are also not signs of heroic or patriotic character.

Posted by: Leroy on August 31, 2008 10:31 AM

Nice try, Spanky, but she's got more executive experience than Obama does.

McCain just won the election. All Obama had to do was pick Hillary for VP and he'd have won 40 states, but he decided to give her the world's biggest middle finger instead. You could well argue that the election was over after the Biden announcement, and you might be right. But with McCain finding an intelligent, articulate female Governor with a record of fighting corruption, and who is the ultimate Washington outsider... game over.

We're now left with three months of Obama and his supporters saying, "HEY! Inexperience should be at the TOP of the ticket!"

Not a winning slogan. Good night, Dems, you just blew the easiest election in USA history.

Posted by: The Man from Guam on August 31, 2008 5:58 PM

Ok, well let's have a look at a comparison that might show some differences:


Y'know, anyway you slice it, Obama is a socialist. This ain't a socialist country. We're better than that. I have to think that if you are pro-Obama, then you are a socialist. He, and you (the collective you), need to reconsider what it means to be a citizen of this country, where it was intended that we all pursue life, liberty and justice and not wait for some demogogic figure to arrive on the scene and lead us all into some sort of magically unified bliss.

News flash: we're not supposed to be unified. Yin needs yang. Good needs evil. Truth needs lies. The clash of opposing forces within a legal framework is what our founders intended. I don't want anything out of anybody else's pocket, but that is what Obama proposes. Essentially, he wants to nationalize the health care and energy industries. Nonsense. We need somebody who will shrink government, not grow it. McCain says he will veto anything with an earmark in it and his own record supports that promise. Palin reduced the size of the Alaskan state government and yet carries an 80% approval rating.

Americans inherently know that too much government is to be feared. Those who want to grow it aren't trying to help anybody, they are only trying to consolidate power.

Kind of ran off at the mouth, didn't I? Sorry 'bout that.

Hey Yeti, can we talk about something else now?

Posted by: Davey on August 31, 2008 7:58 PM

> You see, Palin is the chief executive of a state. Obama is the chief
> executive of.....nothing.

...and by that logic, McCain is equally unqualified for chief executive status, because he's never been anything but a senator.

So why aren't you asking that Palin and McCain swap places on their ticket? She's so obviously qualified for the office...

Posted by: heehee on August 31, 2008 8:47 PM

Plus didn't I read something about Janet Reno being the real father of her baby?

This is bizarro-world politics though where it's fine to smear Kerry's service, but god forbid anyone question McCain's. McCain will somehow come across as a regular guy in the news media despite private jets and ?# houses.

Posted by: Blicky Kitty on August 31, 2008 9:54 PM

Oh My God (no pun intended, Mr. Yeti! I just fucking figured out why John McCain took this incredibly risky political calculation!

With the selection of Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate, John McCain virtually stripped away his most compelling argument against Barack Obama. Experience. Keeping us safe.
So why did he do it?

He did it because he knew that experience and national security wasn’t a debate he could win against an Obama-Biden ticket. His selection of Governor Palin was a way in which he could boil the entire contest down to social issues. He bet his entire campaign on where the country might stand on issues like abortion, gay marriage, gender and race. Fucking brilliant if you really think about it.

Obama’s campaign is about facing tough realities, about empowerment, about common ground. And McCain’s campaign is about
boys kissing.

Fucking figures.

Buster Westview

Posted by: Buster Westview on September 1, 2008 11:10 AM

The more scandals and news that comes out about Palin, the better. I think she's a terrible choice and I think people are starting to realize that. And I couldn't be happier.

Posted by: Ris on September 1, 2008 7:15 PM

I think it's a brilliant choice. Definately energizes the base and brings those Barr/Paul votes in reaching distance for the GOP. Obama/Biden has some challenges now, Biden was brought in to be the attack dog and sling the mud, he's going to have a hard time doing it in such a way that on the fence women won't take as an attack on a female candidate. Essentially the McCain/Palin ticket de-toothed the dog.

Advantage: McCain

The democrats threw away the easiest win of their lives by not picking HRC. Had they done that it would have been a shoe-in, the GOP would have had to pick a purple siamese twin in order to be considered 'historic'

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 2, 2008 9:00 AM

Not sure what Sarah Palin's family resembles more: the movie "Juno" or the movie "Knocked Up."

Posted by: Knocked Up Teen on September 2, 2008 3:40 PM

Wow, I always thought I was the only right-wing nutjob reading this blog. I won't say Palin's the best thing since sliced bread, but I will say McCain's surprise pick knocked me off my feet.

“Sarah Palin. Babies. Guns. Jesus. HOT DAMN!” - Rush Limbaugh

Posted by: Louis on September 2, 2008 6:38 PM

"And in the final equation, Americans vote for a President, not a Vice-President."

I don't know about that. This is the second election I've been able to vote in, and both times around I've thought the presidential candidates were all tools. I've found the vice presidential debates much more articulate and about the real issues, too. And I know I'm not the only one thinking this way, either, especially among my demographic (twentysomething evangelicals).

Posted by: Manders on September 3, 2008 7:32 AM

Shocking reads in the comments. Wow.

If you think Palin is more "experienced" or "qualified" than Obama, you are completely nuts. Its an embarassing point to try and make. Just look at their actual education, work experience, and the size of the workforce they commanded.

And why are we even comparing Palin and Obama?

Scary stuff. Take off the blinders.

Posted by: chris on September 3, 2008 11:53 AM


Uhm Palin is quite successfully running a state of almost 700,000. Obama has run a couple of campaigns with a staff of a couple thousand maybe. Palin has been an elected official since 1992, Obama took his first elected position in 1997. Palin has officiated at every level of government including Executive experience from city council, Mayor all the way up to Governor of that same state, ousting the sitting Govenor of her own party. Obama has been a state legislator and a Senator.

You're crazy to say that Obama has more political experience. More press coverage, maybe, bigger venue certainly.

And the reason we're comparing Palin to Obama is that Obama opened the door saying he had more experience. He is wrong.

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 3, 2008 12:46 PM

As mayor, Palin left her town of 7000 people $20 MILLION in debt.

Sounds like the kind of sound fiscal management experience that Republicans will find convincing - obviously, this is what convinced McCain to put her on the ticket!

Frankly, no one really cares about Palin beyond some people who confuse identifying with her personal values with evidence of professional competence.

The real brouhaha is based on the fact that McCain tapped a political and professional lightweight to play backup for the Commander-in-Chief position.

Is it a cynical move by "Mr. Straight Talk" to energize the republican base?

Or is he in denial that between age and a cancer history, there's a non-trivial chance that he could die in office?

The answer to that question doesn't matter so much as remembering that McCain will never lie to YOU - just to your face.

For example. right now he's focused on pretending that "everyone" is attacking Palin, when they're really questioning HIS poor judgment. Very slick, just the sort of political move he pretends that he's above.

Posted by: haw on September 3, 2008 4:38 PM

You're talking about the $14 million bond for the sports complex and the $5 million bond for the road improvements, that the voters passed?

Gimme a break, cities take out improvment loans all the time, check your own local governement.

The GOP did not pick a professional lightweight, this is a woman who campaigned to oust a sitting republican governor, and then when on to beat a former governor for that seat. If you think that's lightweight, it makes Obama look silly.

It's not a cynical move, it's a masterful move. They countered the Biden nomination with someone it will be hard for him to attack. It's an added bonus that she has the executive experience that Obama lacks. The VP pick is always a strategic decision. Obama did the same in not picking HRC, it would have given McCain too much ammo, in Biden he has a running mate who normally could go for the jugular, but I don't think they can now.

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 4, 2008 7:58 AM

"Cuntry First!"

Posted by: Apocalypto on September 4, 2008 8:50 AM

I took a break from speaking in tongues and found this gem:


My favorite part - "In an address last June, the Republican vice presidential candidate also urged ministry students to pray for a plan to build a $30 billion natural gas pipeline in the state, calling it "God's will."

"God's will has to be done in unifying people and companies to get that gas line built, so pray for that," she said.

Posted by: Mike Honcho on September 4, 2008 8:54 AM

Wow, Mike, the woman is like straight out of a South Park episode!

"Uh, so we're gonna need an ionic tractor disruptor. Now now, not a regular ionic di- tractor disruptor, but a negative ionic tractor disruptor to uh, help spread the Word of Jesus."


Posted by: Goldie on September 4, 2008 9:08 AM

Over the Laborday weekend it seemed that each station break included a McCain/Republican ad followed by a Obama/Democratic ad.

Message of the Republican ads: Obama doesn't have the experience of a 5th grader.

Message of the Democratic ads: McCain is George W. Bush's long lost twin brother.

Posted by: Eric on September 4, 2008 11:09 AM

Hey DY- Another shout out to Autism. This one from The Maverick.


Posted by: Buster Westview on September 4, 2008 8:09 PM

I think that Palin is a terrifying choice, and a smart one. She will be able to pull all of the Evangelicals to the polls with her 'feminism' of demanding that we respect her families right to make it's own private choices in regards to her pregnant daughter while at the same time doing all she can to ensure that no other woman ever has a choice at all.

Posted by: tornadogrrrl on September 5, 2008 1:46 PM

PrintsCharming, McCain's choice of Palin is a cynical move because she's incompetent to run the country* should McCain kick the bucket.

* Unless by "run the country" you mean "run it into the ground".

Regardless of how "masterful" the move is in terms of short-term politics (i.e. de-fanging Biden, drawing attention to his campaign, etc.), choosing someone ill-fitted to the ACTUAL ROLE OF VP is deeply, deeply cynical.

At least Quayle was more competent than his PR let on. Palin has more effective PR, but is far more lacking in actual skills needed to run the country.

What's my proof of this? Excuse me, but what's YOUR proof? What did YOU know of this person prior to 10 days ago? What has she done prior to the VP pick to distinguish herself outside of Alaska, on the national stage? Sadly, the answer is - nothing!

It's sad how much so many people are investing in someone they had never heard before last week.

As for McCain, he only chose her to seek out the publicity (and therefore votes) that she would inspire between now and the election. He certainly didn't do much vetting of her background (not the family stuff used as a distraction, the various firing scandals, etc.)

Apparently McCain doesn't think beyond himself, should he (God forbid) perish in office. Why should he? Should the worst happen, he'll be gone!

That's one heckuva job of "putting the country first", McCain.

Posted by: haw on September 5, 2008 3:16 PM

I think the whole basis for your argument is just flat wrong. A sitting governor with 16 years of politcal experience is qualified to run the country. Every bit qualified as a State/US senator with 12 years of experience. 16>12 done. Everything else you say about experience is groundless.

What has Obama done that you knew about before he ran for president. Gimme a break.

Posted by: haw on September 5, 2008 3:55 PM

Your other points are also crazy. Clinton met with Gore one time before offering him a spot on the ticket. That was when Gore was running for president in '88, he met with Bubba to ask for his endorsement in the campaign...Clinton turned him down BTW.

Scandals...lets see...Ayers, Wright, Rezko (he might be clear in the last one...maybe...but the press has stopped asking questions)

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 5, 2008 4:05 PM

Oops...two posts up was supposed to read @haw not be from haw....stupid fingers.

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 5, 2008 4:06 PM

My gosh -- who are these people posting?! I love this site b/c it's funny and smart. I can't believe all these folks leaving comments are regular readers. McCain/Palin is the most cynical, opportunistic conservative ticket since, well, Bush/Cheney. For god's sake, the Republicans think the flag is more important than the Constitution. They would rather drill in a wildlife refuge than drive a smaller car.
Please post again, Matthew. Not all of your readers are rabid conservatives.

Posted by: dawn on September 5, 2008 5:22 PM

Three years ago you needed her signature if you wanted to get a fishing license.

Soon you may use her fingerprints on that piece of paper to annihilate Iran!

Posted by: Nom_de_Guerre on September 5, 2008 7:12 PM

So. With all of the "fun" comments above, anyone know when DY is coming back?

Posted by: Michael on September 6, 2008 9:28 AM

I hate traitors like Sarah Palin. Just because she's white and has a nice pair, she thinks she can get away with this shit.

Posted by: Jesus Christ on September 6, 2008 12:51 PM

Well anyhoo, I've uncovered definitive evidence that Sarah Palin is trying to channel Karen Walker on Will & Grace.

Posted by: Blicky Kitty on September 6, 2008 9:16 PM

I'm amazed at the aching desire to "quantify" experience, and in this process entirely ignore the fact that different kinds of experience count in very different and complex ways.

As a broad example, I'm a software developer, and my cousin is a construction developer - sure, we've both got a decade of experience in "building complicated things", but we're hugely unqualified to perform each other's specific job "building complicated things".

More relevant to the topic at hand, the following opinion piece does a good job exploring the different types of experience, and how they really matter when it comes to getting stuff done as president:


Posted by: haw on September 7, 2008 11:47 AM

You are absolutely right...one experience does not equal another.

Senatorial Experience > Executive Experience


Executive Experience = Exeuctive Experience

One has it and the other doesn't...it's a stupid argument anyway, as McCain comes from a genetic line of "Highlander" like stock. His 96 year old mother looks like she could take me in a fair fight.

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 7, 2008 4:44 PM

You want experience? I've got experience! Hell, I served in both the Continental and the Confederate Congresses.

Robert Byrd / C. Montgomery Burns 2008.

Building a bridge to nowhere using 18th century technology.

We're the original steampunks, bitches!

Posted by: Robert Byrd, the Oldest Living Confederate Congressman on September 7, 2008 7:14 PM

Apparently wordpress doesn't like not equals notation...

Senatorial Experience != Executive Experience

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 7, 2008 7:18 PM

Contrary to the ongoing confusion, its silly to imagine that McCain's camp chose Palin based on experience.

For example, if Palin's gubernatorial experience had prepared her for presenting herself on the national stage (a fundamental executive skill for running/acting as VP, let alone president), why has McCain's campaign been hiding her from the press? The fact that she has scheduled a single interview with Charlie Gibson for later this week (alongside a McCain campaign handler ) is news in itself, because this is the only available press access!

Shouldn't she be, you know, campaigning? Something, that, by definition, involves meeting with the public and press several times a day in relatively uncontrolled situations?

Comparatively, Mitt Romney - another conservative governor who was being considered for the VP ticket- actually completed a term in office that often drew national attention in its own right (dealing with statewide healthcare and gay marriage), and ran a campaign for president in his own right. He would've hit the ground running with the McCain and been campaigning on-message within hours.

McCain didn't pick Palin for the VP spot because of "experience", he picked her to draw the evangelical vote, which is a constituency that he needs. As far as McCain is concerned, she's an attractive evangelical figurehead able to present a folksy personality, and that's why he picked her.

McCain is willing to do whatever it takes to win - that's not "putting the country first", that's putting McCain first and everyone else last.

Posted by: haw on September 8, 2008 6:21 AM


"he picked her to draw the evangelical vote, which is a constituency that he needs. As far as McCain is concerned, she's an attractive evangelical figurehead able to present a folksy personality, and that's why he picked her."

You're right, she's all those things....AND she has executive branch experience. So yeah it's totally a great pick.

Romney is an awful pick, he's awkward on camera, and not very likeable. You don't want a runningmate that is just another version of you. In many ways she might head the ticket better than McCain, but given the masognystic America we live in, VP is a great place to start, and hopefully if their campaign and administration turns out to be something good for the country, she'll get her chance in 8 years.

Posted by: PrintsCharming on September 8, 2008 7:39 AM

This experience argument just shows how totally ignorant the American public is (and how easily swayed they are by the corporate media to waste their attention on nonsense). There is no such thing as relevant experience for the office of President of the United States (with the sole exception of those running for a second term as President).

Being governor of any state is utterly unrelated to being President of the whole country. Being a CEO of a corporation is unrelated to running a government. Being in a legislature...well that one's obvious.

Anyone who gets elected to this office for the first time is going in blind and that's all there is to it. We just have to make a guess as to who will be able to learn this very difficult job fastest. In my mind, that is obviously Obama.

Posted by: Leroy on September 8, 2008 8:58 AM

"and hopefully if their campaign and administration turns out to be something good for the country, she'll get her chance in 8 years."

Sounds like a perfect plot for a Stephen King novel.
Seriously, wow.

Posted by: Goldie on September 8, 2008 10:15 AM

Who here is Alaskan? Unless you are, it's incredibly unlikely that you were familiar with Sarah Palin's accomplishments prior to a few weeks ago (when the press first noted that she was an outlier choice for VP).

Why had noone had heard of her? Because she hadn't made herself known to the country by way of high-profile state-level achievements, let alone any national or federal-level achievements. Name one.

And while that's not a problem for a governor, it is a REALLY big deal for someone with aspirations to major federal office.

Furthermore, If McCain's camp has issues with Palin's exposure on the national level, what does it say to her ability to get stuff done on that level?

Palin has yet to accomplish anything with national exposure, yet alone accomplished anything on the national level. It's a huge deal that McCain decided that this was not relevant for a national-level executive.

Posted by: haw on September 8, 2008 10:45 AM

Also, I have to disagree with Leroy - getting things done on a national level is relevant to the presidency. Experience in dealing with Congress and the Courts is relevant to the presidency. Experience in dealing with the military (as a civilian or serving) is relevant to the presidency.

Estimating experience is a complex task that often has to be based on subjective judgment calls, but there are broad areas of past accomplishments which are very relevant to the job of being president.

Posted by: haw on September 8, 2008 10:51 AM

This is what happens when you meet a stranger in the Alps.

Posted by: Walter Sobczek on September 8, 2008 7:01 PM