It was with mixed emotions that I watched the inauguration of our 44th President, Barack Obama. As a conservative, I have an obligation to stand up for what I believe is right, and to oppose about 95% of what our new President wants to do. But it’s hard not to get caught up in the moment and almost believe that one mortal human can do everything he’s promised to do as our new President. Inaugural events are made for TV, and the massive crowds gathered to witness this historic event added to the drama of the moment we all witnessed together. Yet we all must realize the limitations of any President and any politician to fill gaps in our wallets or in our lives. There is a proper role of government in this country, and we need to get back to it. The responsibility for our success or failure belongs to us alone. If you are looking to a politician or to a celebrity to fulfill a spiritual need in your life, may I humbly suggest that you look elsewhere? Otherwise, prepare for disappointment. Some walls were broken down today, but there are those who insist on living in our tainted racial past — like Rev. Lowery. If the African-American community expected all racism to be gone with the election of Barack Obama, then this might come as a shock.
Highlights and lowlights:
That was awkward — Chief Justice John Roberts flubbing the presidential oath of office, DiFi’s questionable pronunciation skillz (For the record, I do think she could have said OATH instead of OAF.)
Worst meaningless poem ever — Elizabeth Alexander and her ‘praise song for the day‘. I’m not even sure if that was the title, but it certainly seemed to be a poem about nothing.
Not Dress code approved — Joe Lieberman’s baseball cap.
Best-looking Obama – tie – Barry and his kids. I question the wisdom of the First Lady’s stylist.
Because Jeremiah Wright suddenly had to be out of town on January 20th — Rev. Lowery. His words were a repudiation of all this unity our President keeps talking about. We are all Americans. That’s our common thread. Why is this guy seeking to keep us divided into racial groups?
I don’t remember much about what our new President said, except that it was unexceptional compared to some of his previous speeches. The trouble is that he’s set such a high bar for himself that it could be difficult to meet those expectations.
She doesn’t want it. Maybe someone smarter than me can explain to me why pay raises have any relationship to fiscal conservatism, or the lack of same. If that’s the standard, there are no fiscal conservatives, at least in politics. Not many politicians say no to pay raises. In addition to that, there’s also a difference between spending public (taxpayer) money and donor money. This does not matter to Sarah Palin’s detractors.
Fiscal conservatism, in terms of its relationship to government, should be defined as the way public money is spent and allocated. It doesn’t have anything to do with Sarah Palin’s personal spending, or her accepting pay raises as governor, or even allowing the RNC to spend $150,000 on a VP wardrobe. (Although I don’t think the RNC itself has any credibility as fiscally conservative because of the actions of its membership in Congress…)
The election is over. Leave Governor Palin alone. There’s no guarantee she’s going to try again, or any guarantee that she will do enough in 4-8 years to become a credible candidate for President. Let’s see what happens, and who else may emerge from the Republican chaos of 2008 to become a contender.
You know that story about Sarah Palin not knowing that Africa is a continent? Total fabrication. Even the New York Times admits it. Credit the New York Times for finally reporting the correct story, but the damage has already been done. The truth doesn’t matter when the media has a reputation to destroy, and they have done their worst to Sarah Palin. While my fellow conservatives have sometimes overemphasized the liberal slant of news coverage, during this election the media did choose sides, and their side won. Can’t these guys enjoy the victory for awhile and attempt this “post-partisan” love-in we were all promised by President-elect Obama? The election is over. Let’s move on from the Sarah Palin wars and talk about this great new President-elect, ok?
As always…it’s too much to ask of them.
The time has already come for assessing blame and naming those at fault for the McCain loss. It didn’t take long for anonymous McCain staffers to trash Sarah Palin (without having the guts to put their names on the allegations). That takes real courage, doesn’t it? The debate isn’t over Sarah Palin’s qualifications or knowledge of foreign affairs. That one’s been lost, because even though most of us like her, we know her limitations as a VP candidate. This is about these anonymous McCain people blaming her for their failures.
I want to know who these people are and how much influence they had in whatever vetting process took place before Palin’s selection. If they were involved in her selection, believing that she wasn’t ready for the job, and yet telling McCain to pick her anyway, that’s political malpractice. It could just be that McCain ignored those people to pick Sarah, and they don’t want to be blamed for what many people see as a bad choice by McCain. Whatever scenario you want to believe, it doesn’t reflect the McCain campaign in a positive light.
One mistake that was made in the Palin selection was that the McCain campaign had to spend valuable campaign time defending Sarah’s record and qualifications — time that could have been spent defining McCain’s own message. The goal was to make the case for himself and explain why Barack Obama would be a risky choice for America. Even with the pick of Governor Palin, and the diversion it may have caused in the campaign, there were clear opportunities for John McCain to make that case, and he wasn’t able to do it. That’s not Sarah Palin’s fault.
It was going to be an uphill battle against Barack Obama, even if Republicans had a candidate a majority of us could support. The results shouldn’t surprise anybody, taking into account the current President’s unpopularity and the damaged Republican brand over the past 8 years. But it would have been a worse loss without Governor Palin on the ticket. She energized the base and got McCain more Republican votes than he would have gotten with any other pick. She deserves credit for that, and most of the blame for a mismanaged McCain effort should go to his campaign team, not to her.
Congratulations to President-elect Barack Obama. It’s truly a historic achievement, and I’m proud of my country for finally breaking this barrier that has been in place for a very long time. He ran a great campaign, and he was able to blunt all the Republican arguments against him without much effort. There will be more said about the missed opportunities by the McCain campaign, and many second-guessers will analyze the failures of that campaign for years to come.
Barack…we have given you an opportunity to lead this nation. Don’t change it too much.
The United States of America is still a great country. That greatness stems from the hard work and dedication of our citizens. Our strength has always been in our people and in our awesome military. We can take comfort in the fact that America’s success or failure is not determined by our politicians. Each and every one of us can and will make adjustments to our lives based on political realities, but it’s even more important that we keep fighting. I intend to hold our next President accountable, and for the sake of this country, I want him to make the right decisions in domestic and foreign policy. That’s what country first should mean — putting our country before any political party advantage. Many tough decisions will have to be made in the next 4 years, and it is in America’s best interest that President-elect Obama makes the right decisions.
Today we give Barack credit for making history. Tomorrow we get to work fighting him on policy issues.
Oh no… Obama is so much like Bush!!! This link to similarities between President Bush and Barack Obama’s rhetoric / record is posted merely for the expected leftist meltdown it would cause. Of course, the writer also notes when Obama has changed his position to mirror that of the Bush administration. Good stuff. For the record, I do not expect a third Bush term from Barack Obama. That’s much less likely than getting some policy mind melds from fierce opponents President Bush and Senator McCain.
Happy Election Eve, everyone. Go vote for McCain tomorrow.
From the Corner:
This is an amazing race. The incumbent president has approval ratings somewhere between Robert Mugabe and the ebola virus. The economy is supposedly on the brink of global Armageddon. McCain has only $80 million to spend, while Obama’s burning through $600 mil as fast as he can, and he doesn’t really need to spend a dime given the wall-to-wall media adoration. And tonight Chris Matthews’ doctors announced that his leg tingle has metastasized leaving his entire body like a vibrating cellphone whose ringtone is locked on “I’m In Love, I’m In Love, I’m In Love, I’m In Love, I’m In Love With A Wonderful Guy.” And yet an old cranky broke loser is within two or three points of the King of the World. Strange.
It is strange. With all of Obama’s advantages, this should be a landslide victory for him. And yet McCain is still hanging in this race. That should make the left very nervous. Could Obama still get a convincing victory over McCain? Of course. It would be foolish to overestimate McCain’s ability to close the gap between himself and Obama. But making the country take another look at Obama before the election next Tuesday can only improve McCain’s chances of pulling off the upset victory.
Since I didn’t watch it, I will leave it to others to analyze the content. I would just like to point out that no one does political infomercials like Ross Perot. The accent, the big ears, and the pie charts were very entertaining, and that’s where the American people got the real Straight Talk before McCain came along — from a Texas billionaire with nothing to lose. That’s the only way any of us will ever get complete honesty from a politician running for president. What was the effect of Perot’s effort? Did it switch the race in his favor? Hardly. But at least he has a lifetime guest spot on Larry King Live, so the presidential bid wasn’t a total loss.
Barack Obama is a great salesman, at least to his sheep followers and the media (but I repeat myself there). To this point, he has convinced the American people that he will only raise taxes on the rich (now defined down to $200,000 a year) and big oil. His ads lie about how McCain’s health care plan works, and he gets away with it because McCain doesn’t have the ad budget to dispute his ad-a-minute promotional blitz. When all the ads you see are Obama ads talking about how great his health care plan is and how much he cares about the middle class, it’s hard for the average person to resist this narrative unless they have an compelling alternative argument. Surrender is the word I would use to describe the reaction to Obama’s ad blitz. McCain should have done more to present that alternative vision before now, but even with all the mistakes he has made, this is still a close race.
If you’re wondering why more conservative Republican women aren’t volunteering to run for higher office, or even for state races, witness the attempted destruction of Sarah Palin. How many other women could handle such abuse with the grace and class that Sarah has shown throughout this process? There are fair criticisms of her resume, just as there are legitimate concerns about some of the items on Barack Obama’s resume — like the time spent as a community organizer — but no public figure deserves the treatment she has received, even by some columnists most would consider conservative-friendly.
That leads me to National Review columnist Kathleen Parker. She had previously written a rather unflattering piece on National Review Online about Palin questioning McCain’s judgment in picking her, and she received a lot of negative feedback for writing that column, including a few death threats. I don’t believe in censoring opinions I disagree with, and I certainly condemn those loons who actually threatened Parker’s life. There’s no excuse for such a violent reaction. In addition to that, I think Parker raises a valid concern about Palin’s readiness for the national stage in that first article (written before the VP debate). I’m sympathetic to that original argument.
What I don’t understand is the motivation behind her current article suggesting that McCain picked Sarah Palin because he had some kind of crush on her. What would possess her to write something like that? I have no idea. I guess being a member of the conservative pundit class allows you to get stupid stuff like this published in National Review. If McCain loses, all Republicans will be looking for someone to blame for it, and I get the frustration many of us feel because McCain and his campaign staff have missed many great opportunities to make the case for him and against Obama. It would be easy and convenient for us to blame the Palin choice as the reason for a McCain loss. It’s not the reason, and we should find another scapegoat…someone who looks an awful lot like John McCain.
Conservatives warned that John McCain was a very flawed candidate, but the party leadership, in keeping with current tradition, was more interested in the opinions of those indies and moderates than it was with our opinions. We have what we have. As for me, I will join fellow conservatives and other Republicans on November 4th and vote for John McCain. Abandoning him now ensures the election of Barack Obama, and I refuse to have that on my conscience. There are also local and state Republicans who have races to win on November 4th. Sitting this election out is not an option. It’s crunch time. We can still fight on until Election Day and see what happens. We are assured of a loss if we give up. I’m not giving up until we count the votes. Who’s with me?
If only Fred Thompson had decided to make a serious effort to run for President at the beginning, we might not be stuck with McCain now. So thanks Fred.
Now that Fred has zero chance of being President himself, he tries his best to inspire the people for McCain and to make the argument McCain has thus far failed to make against Barack Obama.
Here’s a part of it:
Obama and the Democrats believe that Americans in a time of crisis will be willing to sacrifice their freedoms, abandon their founding principles and common sense and ease into the mediocrity of the warm embrace of the Washington papa bear who will take care of all of our problems for us.
These are not the ideals of the America that drew brave men and women from all over the world to our shores. In most cases, they were fleeing nations with the heavy hand of government, intolerance and class warfare. They risked everything to experience our Founding Fathers notion of a limited government with powers that were delineated, checked and balanced, in a land where they could live and prosper in a free, dynamic, upwardly mobile society the kind that existed no where else in the world. But Obama and his liberal friends dont see things that way.
The liberal agenda is based upon the belief that there are elites among us who know more and know better than the rest of us. And that with the application of their intellect and power
and our money
they can impose regulations and establish programs, bureaus and agencies that will solve all the problems of the masses.
Senator Obama and his supporters essentially see society not as dynamic and changing or full of opportunity. They see one that is divided by economic classes into which every one of us is permanently assigned. In their worldview, those in a lesser economic class are presumably resentful and envious. So its the governments job to level things out
or as Senator Obama would say spread the wealth around. Its about dividing the pie among static classes, not trying to make the pie bigger for everyone or creating opportunity in an upwardly mobile society.
This is the reason why they do not understand Joe the Plumber. Because he doesnt have a higher income today they assume that he never will and that he believes he never will. They expect him to resent anyone whose doing better than he is, instead of planning to do better himself. They dont understand the Joes of the world. Never have. Never will.
Read more here.
For all his flaws, Fred Thompson is something John McCain will never be to conservatives — a true believer. He’s able to make the conservative case and the argument against Barack Obama because at his core he buys into the philosophy. Of course there were a few areas where Fred agreed with McCain (campaign finance reform is one example), but on most of the important stuff, Fred was solidly conservative. The same is true of Sarah Palin. I hope that this temporary alliance with McCain won’t make her more moderate. The Republican party doesn’t have a deep bench full of conservative women who, with a little more experience and knowledge of national and foreign affairs, could be great leaders for the Republican party. Our party needs her, but as a true maverick, not the McCain version of the term.