I was planning on going to bed tonight. I wanted to write about McCain's surprising (and incredibly cynical) pick of Sarah Palin to be his VP choice tomorrow, or perhaps Friday. Hell, it's 12:30am and I should be in bed.
But fuck that; I'm pissed and disgusted and I'm going to do this now.
McCain's pick of Palin, a first term governor from that hotly-contested and vitally important swing state of Alaska (with it's whopping 3 electoral votes having gone to the Republican party for years), is a pick that should be insulting to members of the GOP and women everywhere. Here is a woman who was picked because she's a frisky outsider, a down-to-her-bones conservative who is anti-abortion, anti-gun control, and pro-Big Oil. Oh, she'll tell you how she's stood up to special interest groups, oil companies, and terrorists as the governor of Alaska over the past 22 months, but really, who the fuck is she kidding?
How did you stand up to terror when neither you nor the leader of the Alaskan National Guard have any say whatsoever as to when or where Alaskan troops are deployed? How did you stand up to Congress with the "Bridge to Nowhere" after your state had already pocketed the money budgeted for the project? If it stopped going to the bridge then where did it go? She's so eager to drill for oil in Alaska, but who the fuck do you think is going to be doing the actual drilling? Or the building of the pipelines? Or the refining of the oil? OIL COMPANIES, YOU DUMB FUCK.
Here's what we know about Palin: she's preached abstinence-only education for Alaskan public schools for the past two years. She's rejected sex-ed and handing out condoms in schools. She and her husband were active in the Alaskan Independence Party which, among other ideals, believed that Alaska should secede from the Union. That's right, the Republican nominee for Vice President of the United States of America once belonged to a political party whose main objective was to have Alaska BREAK OFF FROM THE UNITED STATES and become its own country.
But the best part about Palin? The fact that while she's out and about in East Buttfuck, Alaska warning parents and their children about the evils of sex without actually teaching those people how to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancies and STDs, her daughter is actively getting knocked up by some redneck high school hockey player in the back of his pickup truck. I couldn't make this shit up if I tried. And now the Republicans and evangelicals are actually spinning this garbage to make it look like a GOOD thing, going so far as to APPLAUD this 17 year-old for keeping the baby and marrying the father. Are you fucking kidding me? The Republican party is trying to tell people that they only want to teach teenagers that it is not ok to have sex before marriage under any circumstances, but in case they get knocked up at the young age of NOT ABLE TO CONSENT that their best bet (and the only morally right option) is to keep the baby and marry the father? As if a 17 year-old is mature enough to decide that the person they're sleeping with and getting knocked up by is the right person for them with whom to spend the rest of their lives. Does that sound reasonable? You're fucking right it doesn't.
So Palin was really picked because McCain needed someone youthful behind him. He needed someone to take away Obama's votes from disenchanted Hillary supporters. He needed someone who would call forth the extreme right, a group that has wavered on McCain over the last eight years no matter how hard he has tried to reinvent himself to please them. But Hillary supporters aren't going to vote for her; just because she has a vagina doesn't make her the "woman's choice". Her views differ fundamentally from Clinton's; they are from different backgrounds; Clinton has experience on a national and international level.
Palin is a gimmicky pick that negates any possible ground McCain had to stand on when it came to Obama's inexperience. The amount of spinning the GOP has done to make Palin look like a legit choice for the 2nd highest office in the country is making the lamp post outside my window dizzy. I can't imagine that any sane person would actually trust the country to a person with no real experience if something were to happen to McCain, a man who has had melanoma four times and who would be 73 years old at the time of his theoretical inauguration. It's crazy, but then again so are Southerners. And residents of the Midwest. Fuck.
Now I know what you may be saying: Biden is from Delaware and they only have 3 electoral votes. Why are you being such a prick just because Palin is from a who-gives-a-flying-fuck state? Two reasons: first, fuck you; don't interrupt me again. Second, because Biden carries a reputation with him; a reputation of foreign policy experience, of fighting for women who are victims of violence, of leading the way in his home state for fostering new energies to be produced and researched. People know who Joe Biden is; they know what they're getting when they vote for him.
What are you getting with Palin? A woman who was mayor of a town with less people than I lived with in the Central section of UMass, and still managed to leave it with a $27,000,000 deficit when she became governor. A woman who became governor of a state whose entire population is a mere 70,000 people less than the number living in the CITY OF BOSTON. A woman who demands that only abstinence be taught in classrooms but can't even teach that same lesson to her own daughter. A woman who fired Alaska's public safety commissioner because he wouldn't fire her sister's ex-husband after a bitter divorce and custody battle, which the ex won. A woman who still believes that God told Bush to wage the War on Terror.
Hypocrisy, crony-ism, mismanagement of funds, religious zeal...wow, she IS the ideal GOP candidate. But she was also a terrible choice for McCain to make, especially when his first priority should have been to pick someone with economic, environmental, and civil rights experience...all are areas in which John McCain is severely lacking in the experience department. Those hoping that Palin will "learn on the job" are deluding themselves. America isn't Burger King; you can't do fries before you've mopped floors. You can't learn on the fly because no one will take you seriously. Even Palin says that whoever takes office needs to be prepared for anything:
"My fellow citizens, the American presidency is not supposed to be a journey of 'personal discovery.' This world of threats and dangers is not just a community, and it doesn't just need an organizer." - Sarah Palin, September 3, 2008
Well said, Governor Palin. Those without experience in the areas of national and international affairs, as well as the workings of Washington politics, should not be running for a job that entails that exact experience.
"The American presidency is not supposed to be a journey of 'personal discovery'."
Those are her words; will she heed them?