I opine

Well-Intentioned But Manipulated

Posted in ethics, gender, politics by jaeminuf on September 7, 2008

In “The Mirrored Ceiling,” the latest post in her New York Times blog Domestic Disturbances, Judith Warner articulates incisively the gross insult and danger that is Palin’s nomination.

Palin sounded, at times, like she was speaking a foreign language as she gave voice to the beautifully crafted words that had been prepared for her on Wednesday night.

But that wasn’t held against her. Thanks to the level of general esteem that greeted her ascent to the podium, it seems we’ve all got to celebrate the fact that America’s Hottest Governor (Princess of the Fur Rendezvous 1983, Miss Wasilla 1984) could speak at all.

Could there be a more thoroughgoing humiliation for America’s women?

One of the worst poisons of the American political climate right now, the thing that time and again in recent years has led us to disaster, is the need people feel for leaders they can “relate” to. … it brought us after all, two terms of George W. Bush. And it isn’t new; Americans have always needed to feel that their leaders were, on some level, people like them. …But never before George W. Bush did it quite reach the beer-drinking level of familiarity… There’s a fine line between likability and demagoguery. Both thrive upon manipulation and least-common-denominator politics.”

Some of the comments to this Blog post were especially worthwhile. In particular, I appreciated Elizabeth Fuller’s comments (#5 and #387 ), as did so many others who commented, and Bill’s comment #363. They were gems. I just hope that the populace is made up of such thoughtful people who do discern the dissimulation being waged by Steve Schmidt, John McCain, Sarah Palin, and the Republican Party who, in order to put themselves in the White House, would do everything but put the country first and in fact would soil and undermine the very values upon which this nation was founded. I hope they are able to see that Sarah Palin is none other than a lipstick wearing, Alaskan iteration of George W. Bush: just as ill-prepared because they are not curious about the world in which they live, they have not dedicated themselves to challenging themselves, their hubris allows them to believe they possess all the wherewithal that could possibly be necessary to be (V)POTUS, and they lack respect for the Constitution and would violate that foundational belief in the separation of church and state.

 

Shame on the Whole Lot of You

Posted in ethics, gender, politics by jaeminuf on September 6, 2008

Senator McCain with Steve Schmidt

Steve Schmidt has transformed John McCain’s campaign into an elbows-out, risk-taking, disciplined machine. – An Adviser Puts His Stamp on McCain CampaignThe New York Times

Steve Schmidt stands for all that I find problematic about politics. His modus operandi is what most people purport to find repugnant about politicking. McCain used to criticize this type of “win at all costs, including stretching the truth so much that it bears little resemblance to itself” politicking. That McCain who was critical of dirty politics, I actually liked.

Must we resort to this to win? Are we that base? To stoop to such demeaning strategies and to devour such meat with frightening voracity that we make a pack of laughing hyenas appear civilized?

This criticism is not limited to Steve Schmidt and whichever likeminded Republicans.

Dems! Whatever happened to being the change you want, of wanting a more elevated, diginified political engagement? (more…)