You know me; if you read my blog it should be quite obvious that I am a middle of the road Republican; I certainly am not a Democrat, and I register as an Independent. So you can imagine that I am following this presidential campaign pretty closely, being a bit of a politics wonk. So when the John McCain campaign put out an ad trying to scare white fathers and mothers away from Barack Obama, McCain made up my mind for me.
I was truly looking forward to a straight forward, clean campaign promised by both candidates, but what did I get? I got the Republican smear three months out from the election… hell; the candidates are not yet even “rat”ified by the party conventions yet and the mud is piling up. To Barack’s benefit he does not sling it as well as McCain, but he is getting more politically savvy at the backhanded putdown that is more his style.
So what prompted this entry? The Spears/Paris McCain ad that say as subtext that Barack Obama is coming to get your daughters and have sex with them. It is “Birth of a Nation” all over again with darkies waiting in the shadows. The implication is that Barack is dating (or as a radio talk show host say “dating equals porking”) young, vapid white celebrity girls (your daughters; also implying your daughters are not too bright), and having sex with them using his really big black tool (the images of the “Leaning Tower of Pisa”, and the “Washington Monument”). This ad has no other value other than it is meant to scare the hell out of white folk.
So, who played the race card? Well, to be honest, both of them, but at least Barack’s use of the racial issue is fairly self deprecating. Barack has been using the line that he does not look like the past Presidents on the money we use. This is true, and what it gets Barack is that he is new and different for a new and different country, now. Where as McCain use of the race issue is “By the way… he’s black” attitude has no redeeming value other than to scare white people away from Barack using latent racism.
I guess I shouldn’t be surprised at the Republican tactics, they have been doing the same thing for a hundred years. What I am upset about I guess is that the candidate made a pledge to no go negative, was haranguing the other candidates not to go negative, and at the first opportunity flip-flopped on that pledge and went negative. But again, why should I be surprised, McCain has been flip-flopping on issues since the start of the campaign run to appeal to the current constituents he needed to win primary races. Now he is flipping both to the conservative left and trying to roll the center into one campaign and not being effective. Barack, by virtue of his stubborn nature is not really flipping so much as tacking his message to the center. He ran on a more centrist message anyway, now he is correcting course to include moderate and middle of the road republicans, as expected.
So, at this point I can make up a small list of the things that I do not agree with in the McCain campaign. They are:
- McCain’s gas tax holiday is bunk. I would rather spend the $14 dollars I am going to save and let 300,000 people remain working. This does not help the long term problem; it is just a band-aid and not a very good one.
- Drilling offshore and in ANWAR is not an answer both because it will take years to gear up and even then will not provide a significant saving to an oil hungry nation.
- Yeah, the surge worked, but then again, it surely should have for what we are spending.
(Let me state that at the time I was for going into Iraq and kicking out Saddam Hussein. Once we did that though we really needed to be out of there. And now that the Iraqi government that we installed wants us out too, we should be preparing with all haste to make a victorious retreat from there. Why victorious? Because we not only did what we came to do, we have even set up a government that thinks it is ready to stand on its own. It’s not, but we should not let that minor fact prevent us from getting out of a situation that is more and more looking like “revenge for daddy”. Honestly we should have been out of there six months after “Mission Accomplished”.)
- Health care? What health care plan?
- Education? What education plan?
- Really, I am not sure where McCain is standing on anything lately, he changes positions so often it is hard to keep track.
That is not to say that Barack has articulated his cases any better. He does not have an Energy plan that is of any worth, there is some movement there on education, but not as much as I would like to see, and he dodges the health care issues with quick aplomb. He is on the right side of the war, he is an inspirational speaker, and maybe that is what the country needs right now.
So, here is my Ballot…
[ ] Charles O. ‘Chuck’ Baldwin
[ ] Robert Laurence ‘Bob’ Barr
[ ] John Sidney McCain
[ ] Cynthia Ann McKinney
(Peace and Freedom, Green)
[ ] Ralph Nader
[ X ] Barack Hussein Obama
I highly recommend you look at the bios for Chuck Baldwin, Bob Barr, Cynthia McKinney and of course Ralph Nader (my vote in 2004) and make some decisions for yourself. Each has some interesting views that should be considered.
Remember, no one is ready to be president from day one, the amount of experience in the role of President is always zero on day one, so don’t let experience be a your road map. It may be that person with no experience that brings the greatest change and creativity to the office because they lack experience and thus have no preconceived ideas how it is all supposed to work.