I think that Republican’s and Democrats alike are having a similar moment today upon learning of John McCain’s vice-presidential announcement this morning. Who? What? Why? Her name is Sara Palin and she has been the governor of Alaska for a year and eight months. Before that she was mayor of a town of less than 10,000 which although she calls herself a ‘fiscal conservative’ (do these even exist anymore?) she left with $20 million in debt. McCain’s response to Obama’s wonderfully eloquent acceptance speech stomping him and the Repugnant-cans is to throw what’s being described by red and blue alike as a political hail-mary pass. But I ask: “At what? To where?” I think he just took the ball and threw it as long and far as he could down the field, in the wrong direction. While Republican’s were saying things like “Who?” and “I don’t know, I’ve never met her” this afternoon when asked for comment the rest of us were getting a crash course on a vice-presidential nominee we had never heard of.
Palin as Miss Wasilla, Alaska in 1984
The fact that nobody seemed to know anything about her, including those on her own side, seems like pretty strong evidence that McCain watched Barack Obama’s speech and convention last night, shit in his Depends, and desperately reached for the wildest wild card that he could play in order to first: draw attention away from a speech that pundits are calling masterful, brilliant, tough, confident and Republicans are comparing to Ronald Reagan (crazy, I know) and second: to frantically try to claim the mantle of change in an election where he is being portrayed as the incumbent in an environment deeply hostile to the current regime.
This leads me to ask: no, seriously, what was he thinking? Was he thinking that he would be able to swing some of the disgruntled Hillary supporters because his new running mate has a vagina? If this is the idea, not only will it not work but I can see it triggering a terrific backlash. First of all, Palin is the opposite of Clinton on policy positions. As someone who is pro-life, pro-gun, anti-environment (she’s against polar bears for god’s sake, didn’t she see those cute Coke commercials?) and vetoed solar, wind and coal initiatives as governor she is basically an evil anti-Clinton mirror twin from Bizarro World. Further she is a 44 year old former beauty queen political lightweight with zero, repeat, zero experience on the national scene. She is as far from Hillary as you can get and still be a female politician. The message I read from this from McCain to Hill’s supporters is: you’re women, she’s one of you, you’re all so blind and stupid that you won’t care that she’s diametrically opposed to everything Hillary fought for for years and years and endured terrible humiliation to get to, vote McCain. You might as well spray them with mace. Bonus negative million points: Hillary will be SO MAD about this that she is going to be back in this campaign spitting acid and SWINGING. So, way to go McCain. You did, I think, the only thing possible to motivate Clinton to campaign as hard as she possibly can for the man who beat her in the primaries.
Next: Age is officially on the table. The fact that McCain could, on his seventy second birthday, nominate a woman who is so deeply, clearly, dangerously unprepared to step in as commander in chief should he succumb to a fifth bout with cancer just illustrates to both sides how much McCain is willing to risk our national security and stop at nothing to win an election. And he accused Obama of being willing to lose a war to win an election? Are you kidding?
Lastly, McCain just picked up the experience stick he’s been beating Obama with all summer, really one of his few legitimate claims, no one can take away the fact that he’s been in Washington for 26 years, and broke it over his own head. By nominating a VP who is both younger, less experienced and also less known than Obama he’s effectively neutralized that argument for himself and his surrogates. The upside for him is that should he be elected he’s pulled an effective Bush-ist move in that absolutely no one will dare to assasinate him for fear that this woman will be running the country.
PS: to those of you are thinking: what is wrong with Matt Shadetek, why is he only talking about politics and writing these weird ranty essays and not talking about music? Well, sorry, this is what I’m thinking about right now and I’ll be damned if I can’t rant about in on my own blog. This is mainly because I feel so strongly that America needs to dump the Republicans and put Obama in the White House that I literally cannot shut up about it.
Oh and PPS: Fuck Daddy Yankee for endorsing McCain (another giant WTF?!?! with a biillion explanation points and question marks) and respect to Fat Joe for dissing him. What a jackass!