Brief Comment on the Aftermath
By: Eddie Clements
With the 2008 election over, and U.S. capitalism on its way there, it is necessary to say a few words about Senator John McCain and the moderate campaign. If he would have run the country like he ran his chaotic campaign and allowed loyal Americans to be treated the way he has allowed Governor Sarah Palin to be treated, it is just as well he lost.
Kind words have been directed toward the patriotic Senator from this source. However, his silence while Governor Palin is being sniped at by his campaign staff is nothing less than disgraceful. It stains his honor. If one ever wondered why many conservatives vowed never to vote for McCain, surely this sordid episode provides a clue.
As for the staff, unless the culprits come forward and own up, no one on his staff should be hired by anyone in the Republican Party in the future. If the renegade staff hoped to salvage their reputation or dignity by these acts, they have in fact lost both. Perhaps they should consider positions as writers for mainstream media, the Big Three TV networks, The New Republic, The Nation, or blog on one of the left wing hate-sites; they would surely be welcomed as one of the family. Anyone politician who hires one of these backbiters runs the risk of being accused, justifiably, of bad judgment, and soundly defeated.
As for Governor Palin, she is and will always remain an achiever. Her grace and dignity while suffering egregious, careless, outrageous personal and professional attacks from insincere and unprofessional media scribblers should be a model for the offending campaign staffersâ€™ behavior. Since they could not beat the media, they joined them, free from the burden of responsibility a Governor has and the job Palin returned to with her head held high after giving her best in a futile cause. Governor Palin gets high marks post-election from the public because she has something President-Elect Obama can never have on his best day: she is One Of Us.
If this is McCainâ€™s staff, it is no small wonder he managed to garner 46% of the popular vote. Certainly it goes far to explain the erratic messages sent by the campaign. The Republican candidate managed to get outflanked to his right on taxes. Eliminating earmarks was pounded on as a major theme. Never mind that earmarks as such are not all necessarily bad, but how can you justify railing against them daily, then voting for that ridiculous â€œbailoutâ€ bill that was laden with pork? And how do you sell the idea of â€œreforming Washingtonâ€ when your staff is lawyered up with lobbyists?
The whole McCain campaign not making sense is now beginning to make sense. Karl Rove and others said it: McCain failed to get people to vote FOR him, not just against the other guy. The reasons why are emerging.
I stated in a previous article it was improper for me to kick Senator McCain while he was down. It appears he has kicked himself down even farther by his silence. It is mysterious why he has not defend his Vice-Presidential candidate from further attacks, an omission that only supplies more fodder to Palinâ€™s Democrat and media enemies and will act to further erode his support among Republicans. How can we trust him to do the right thing when he demonstrates he only does so when expedient?
Question: is this behavior a sign of the times, the Republican Party, or just a staff aberration? Possibly all three. The real problem may go even deeper and the sorry McCain staff episode is symptomatic of the Republican Party dominated by moderates: Republicans are frozen in fear in the face of determined and fierce attack. Republicans were sent to Congress to enact a new agenda in 1994. After decades of venal Democrats ruling the Congressional roost, Republicans, particularly conservatives, should have taken the opportunity to direct the country toward sounder fiscal policies, curtailing entitlements and promoting personal responsibility. They tried, but failed; why? Partly due to Bill â€œSlick Willieâ€ Clinton, an adroit politician, partly due to their â€œgoing nativeâ€ on arriving in Washington, but the rest must have been their own failings, one of which was a lack of party discipline. That lack of discipline was displayed by the McCain staffâ€™s anonymous and probably false accusations.
Democrats seem to have no problem with discipline, knowing it would be rewarded, and it has. Good of the country? Feh! Witness the stonewalling against President Bushâ€™s agenda. Witness unrelenting pressure against Republicans, particularly conservatives, some of which resulted in trumped-up criminal indictments. Witness the Obama presidential campaign. Witness the current revenge exacted by Democrats on Senator Joe Lieberman for supporting John McCain. This is the very type of partisanship McCain promised to eschew, but being a â€œmoderateâ€ who was â€œwilling to reach across the aisleâ€ got him defeated and his buddy busted.
When faced with such virulent resistance Republicans have tended to cave in to Democrats, even trying to out-liberal them. Rich Lowry now calls for Republicans to â€œmove toward the centerâ€. He probably knows a lot more than I about such matters, but such a move would only seem desirable in the face of Democrats taking the nation â€˜way out into left field. The better prescription would seem to be acting conservative, not moderate, and insist on Democrat-like robotic discipline. The alternative is Democrats set to rob Peter to pay Paul, institutionalizing Paulâ€™s eternal support.
The fundamental political paradox of our time is how Democrats, who are now openly saying individuals have no right to keep the money they earn, and Republicans, who (mostly) say they do, gain so many votes and retain power, while keeping Republicans so often in the minority and on the defensive. An example of this at work is the â€œbailoutâ€, a situation created solely and likely purposefully by Democrats. Democrats successfully blamed Republicans.
Never mind inconvenient facts, like Clintonâ€™s law forcing firms to loan money for housing to unqualified buyers, and Congress ignoring several attempts to call attention to the situation by Republicans. Wait â€“ a light just came on. Wasnâ€™t that law passed in 1995, during the Republicansâ€™ majority rule in the House? See what a tangled web they weave? Republicans were co-opted into a position against their philosophy. If they resisted, they would have been accused of cruelty.
Conservatives must now make amends if the republic is to survive. They must obstruct any more giveaways and spurious â€œbailoutsâ€, blame the Democrats for failing to give voters the goodies they want, and make it stick. Use the Democratsâ€™ tactics against them. Not gentlemanly, you say? Then get ready for permanent minority status.
Otherwise, the prognosis calls for widespread system failure. This is a social system made up of individuals, despite Obamaâ€™s â€œall one nationâ€ pronouncement making us sound like ants. When the individuals fail, the social system fails. Backbiters in the McCain campaign have shown us examples of human failures where a few can affect us all.
And this is just internal. Wait until the external shoe drops; Joe Biden said it will.