Sunday, September 14, 2008

Recent Palin Concerns: Blink about it.

"You can't blink..." was the answer Sarah Palin gave when she was asked by an ABC correspondent if she had stopped to think about the VP offer. The same kind of rhetoric was used when talking about attacking RUSSIA. uuuuuummmm.

Sarah Palin - "I -- I answered him yes because I have the confidence in that readiness and knowing that you can’t blink, you have to be wired in a way of being so committed to the mission, the mission that we’re on, reform of this country and victory in the war, you can’t blink. So I didn’t blink then even when asked to run as his running mate.”

Something about this bothered me a little, not the scripted responses, not the annoying overuse of "Charlie" when answering his questions... it was "You can't blink" that has made me reconsider this Palin business. And why shouldn't I? Should we all be so "loyal?" I'll be darned if I am going to simply vote for someone because I like them. I'll be darned if I am going to turn a blind-eye to internal red-flags just because I want to believe in the idea of someone. I won't be one of those ridiculous liberals/conservatives who only vote democratic and liberal or Republican and Conservative because they have chosen idiotic extremism. In my opinion, those folks are one step away from burning books and goose-stepping.

I am also not going to vote for someone based upon their views in ONE area that is important to me. Hell, Hitler loved art. He was good at it. I like art. I make a living in it, or try to...

So, folks, after the aforementioned interview, I am watching carefully and waiting....

See, to me, the words "blink" and "think" are awfully similar. And any human being asked to run for VP, who has a normal functioning brain, would at least stop to consider the possibility. A part of me wonders if that "you can't blink" attitude would somehow seep into all of her other decisions as president. (Come on, that's what we are really voting for here people. If McCain wins, it will be 4 years. Sarah would be the next president.) We've had enough of that "can't blink," pistols-blazing, cowboy crap for the past 8 years.

In other words, please, for the love of Sasquatch... blink, Sarah. Blink several times. Blink when the Russians are attacking Georgia. Blink when your VP tells you that they think that some country might have weapons of mass destruction. Blink about what you are going to do. Blink about it before you go to bed, before you brush your teeth. Shoot, blink about preemptive strikes on a country while you are tinkling. I really won't mind. Blink about every decision you would make as President. Blink about it with your staff members. Blink about it with VP McCain. Shoot, hire Obama and blink about it with him. Even give ole' Bill Clinton a call. I can guarantee he's been blinking about you. (bu-dum-splash!)

As Descartes once said, "I blink therefore I am." So, if you are not blinking, you are gambling. And I don't want a gambler anywhere near the nuke button in the next 8 volatile years...

I haven't written her off, I still like her, I still think there is promise, but I'm just saying that I won't be voting for her on the power of that one speech alone. I gotta see a whooooooooole lot more evidence of careful, and critical blinking on her part.


austinbiel said...

PLEASE read this:

Chaotic Hammer said...

I absolutely agree with your point, Seth. It would be foolish to jump headlong into supporting Palin without really knowing that much about her, even if our first impressions are good. I think the "blink" thing you're quoting is a bit out of context. But I had a whole different perspective on this interview, based on how I first ran across it...

For several years now, I have been very wary of the media in general. Whether the "mainstream" media, which leans heavily left and doesn't apologize for it, or some of the "alternative" media which has arisen in response, which tends to lean heavily right -- both are guilty of agendas, bias, etc. It's difficult to get good, unfiltered information about anything any more, including what a person is really like based on short sound bytes.

I have good friends and family in Texas, and Friday night I was trying to find out the latest reliable information about Hurricane Ike. I found the Weather Channel to be the best, but occasionally they got monotonous and repetitious (when it was clear they had no new info for a while and had to create a little time filler), so I flipped over to a few other channels to see their hurricane coverage. Fox News didn't do too badly, they had a meteorologist with a big map and radar and satellite images, and a few reporters (like Geraldo) out in the blowing wind yelling, like all of them do now. I also tried both CNN and MSNBC, and they each would have a few minutes of hurricane coverage, then would break away to "Urgent news, you've gotta see this!". And it was a clip of Charlie Gibson interviewing Palin, and asking her about "the Bush Doctrine", and her looking confused and asking him what he meant.

And frankly it kinda pissed me off that millions of people were in a potentially critical life and death situation, and instead of covering that, they saw a sudden increase in their viewership, and couldn't help but to use it to cater to their bias and agenda. They showed rather apparent glee that the oft-sought "Gotcha!" moment seemed to have occurred. "See, this hockey-mom yokel from Alaska really is as dumb and unqualified as we've been trying to tell you she is!"

But when I started reading about the whole thing later, I noticed that we weren't even seeing the whole interview, and it was very carefully and selectively edited to give a very wrong impression of Palin and her responses. Here's a copy of the transcript with the omitted parts included.

I'm not opposed to the press asking very hard and direct questions to potential presidential or vice-presidential candidates. I consider that a critically important part of our process. But it's one thing to ask hard questions -- it's quite another to do an intentional hatchet job with carefully edited answers that deliberately give a very distinct misrepresentation of the actual questions asked and answers given.

Even though ABC released the "full transcript" of the interview later, showing that much of what was said was not what was shown, the impression created in the minds of most of the people who will see the interview is already set, and it will only be consumed by most people in ten-second sound bytes.

And the kicker? It turns out that the definition that Charlie Gibson gave for "Bush Doctrine" was not correct either. He used it in his question like he was a history professor asking his student about The Monroe Doctrine. Very matter-of-factly, like "everyone smart already knows what I mean by this". But even he didn't know what it meant! The guy who first coined the expression says Gibson got it wrong.

Saturday Night Live, the late-night comedians, and the usual "Washington elitists" have already set the mold the Sarah Palin is a ditzy hockey mom, and will attempt to play up that image, because that's how our media works now. It's what sells commercials and entices people's short attention spans for a few extra seconds. But if you read what Palin really said, it turns out she's a pretty smart cookie, and I don't think her full answers were the result of "coaching" by political handlers. She really does show a depth of understanding that seems to reflect a genuine understanding of the issues.

Like most other people, I'm sort of tired of watching Bush talk, and taking five or ten seconds to select each word he speaks carefully, and speaking odd sentences that barely make sense, and repeating the same phrases or sentences over and over. I think he's a smart guy, but a poor communicator and public speaker.

Regardless of whether McCain/Palin or Obama/Biden win, at least we have a better chance in the next four years of hearing well-spoken sentences that make sense. :-)

(Assuming they're not edited out!)

Seth Ward said...

Guys, thanks for the links! Very informative and it certainly reinforces the notion that the Press is indeed... liberal. Or at least they reeeeeeaaaally like Obama. Sheesh.

Odly, it wasn't Sarah's intelligence or her lack of general knowledge (there wasn't anything there that spooked me, I mean, come on, that's part of what makes her attractive. She's not been indoctrinated by years and years of failed diplomacy, failed.... everything.) What bothered me, a little, was her overconfidence. Overconfidence is a weakness. Not as big of a weakness as indecisiveness (Obama) but certainly something for me to watch closely.

But hey! We've got 50 something days to go, right?

And it is going to be a fuuuuuun ride. My greatest hope is that whatever the outcome, we make it out of the race without a tragedy. It would be HORRIBLE if some crazy bigot hick pulled an oswald or something. It would tear us to shreds.

I know if there is anything I can pray about in the election is safety for the candidates, specifically, one of them....

Susanne said...

Great point, Seth! I agree with what you're saying. But to me, no thinking/blinking is better than what we'd get with the other two goofballs in the race. Maybe no thinking is better than the wrong thinking. Those guys scare the crap out of me, so I'd have a hard time voting for them if their opponent was the anti-Christ (well, maybe that's the only time I'd vote for them anyway). Thanks for the link, C-Ham!

Stephen said...

Seth, there are a number of reasons why I'm pretty sure I won't go anywhere near a ticket with Palin on it, and this is one of them. Not the quotes taken out of context, but what you mentioned, the over-confidence, and what seems to be her underlying philosophy. To say nothing of the implicit endorsement of torture in Palin's acceptance speech.

A friend of mine, an episcopal priest here in Nashville, commented after hearing her speech, "If you closed your eyes, you could hear George W. Bush. She's Bush Jr." And there's no way I'm voting for that philosophy again.

MamasBoy said...

I agree with you Seth that not blinking would be a problem, if it was equated with not thinking. Being an imprecise word picture, it certainly raises a red flag, but doesn't do much more than that for me. We'll see how further speeches go. Overconfidence is definitely a problem too. However, with the media saying she is drastically underqualified to do this job, it seems like she had no choice than exude confidence, especially given the hostile nature of the interview.

Perhaps I'm being too easy on Palin here. Honestly, I feel sorry for the gal. The media has been such assholes toward her. Today, I listened to some web coverage of her speech on NPR and they really narrowed in on the moments that made her look bad... even if the interviewer was being an much greater idiot in trying to make her look stupid when he didn't even know what the "Bush Doctrine" has meant over the years. Thanks C-Ham for the link to the Krauthammer article. I actually heard another NPR commentator say that it was fair to say that Palin thought the Iraq war was God's will. Come again? She said, we should pray that our leaders are doing God's will. "are," meaning present-tense post-invasion in the context of her son being sent over there to do a task decided on by somebody else. Let's pray that our leaders are doing God's will, meaning we could end up not doing God's will if we aren't careful. It's the same sort of thing Lincoln and others have been said down through the centuries. Somehow the f@#$ing media interprets her statement as saying the invasion of Iraq was God's will. NPR no less. I just don't get it.
(the quote in question is about the 5:50-6:15)

Of course, NPR can't be bothered to cover the fact that IL SB1082 and the Federal Born Alive Infants Protection Act are virtually identical bills and Obama has been calling people liars who publicize his opposition to this bill.

These people are supposed to be professionals. Are they that biased... or just dangerously unqualified? Sadly, I think it is bias/prejudice.


Tully said...

"No thinking is better than the wrong thinking"...Really??? WOW!

I'm not a fan of the She-Bush...I'm afraid she would mistake the nuke button for the Staples "Easy" button and think to more Russia, now "that was easy!"

She seems like a Bush in Moose clothing, that's all I'm sayin'!!!