06 October 2008
I'm beginning to think that we should have a qualifying exam for anyone who wants to run for an executive office.
Sarah Palin could be our next vice president and thus possibly president of the most powerful country in the world yet she doesn't understand the U.S. Constitution. She thinks freedom of the press is a "privilege." Lady, when I taught 8th grade my students knew it was a right expressed in the first amendment and something embedded into our culture. Of course, Palin proved at the debate that she still doesn't fully understand the role of the vice president. (She also proved she doesn't know she's supposed to answer the moderator's questions -- by golly.)
In the dumbing down of America the political "elites" are cast as bad guys. Look if I have plumbing problem I'd want an elite plumber, just as I'd prefer an elite airline pilot flying the plane I'm riding. Elite is actually a good thing. It means you're among the best at what you do. Isn't that something we want? Don't we want knowledgeable, educated leaders? Not if you're a Republican. You prefer folksy! This is what Palin offers, folksy, winking charm when the nation needs sophisticated leadership. By God she can't even name the newspapers she reads and thinks being in physical proximity to a region qualifies one as an expert on handling it. Americans should be insulted. Americans should expect more from those who propose to serve us. America should expect more in those seeking its highest offices.
Palin's attempts to appeal to voters because she understands "small town values" is nothing less than thinly veiled racism. After all it's big cities that are full of African Americans, Hispanics and Gays. She's reminding us that she is white (unlike you-know-who) and relates to other white people. Palin's unconscionable attack on Obama for "palling around with a terrorist" further unmasks her as a fear monger manipulating facts for political purposes. That this is what the Republicans come up with as their vice presidential candidate sends a frightening message that the Bush presidency was no fluke. The politics of stupidity, devisiveness and manipulation are firmly entrenched in the GOP. Like Bush she shows no intellectual curiosity (that's for elites, I guess) and like him did not even bother to get a passport until into her 30's. Evidently world travel is for elites too.
I never cease to be amazed at what this country has survived. Many people will conclude that if we can withstand eight years of a Bush presidency we can handle anything. But I'm not so sure we could handle eight days of a Palin presidency and as vice president she'd be too close for comfort. John McCain, likely too near to death to be running for president in the first place, made a bald faced political selection for his running mate. If this is how he'd govern, no thanks.
These are times of great peril folks. Here's hoping for a big Obama win on November 4.