Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Sarah Palin Is George Bush

When it comes to picking a President, personality and especially governing style are probably more important than their "positions" on the issues. One of the problems with the very long election campaign that is finally winding to a close is that the issues have shifted significantly.

Remember when this all started, nearly two years ago? Iraq was THE issue. No one was worried about high gas prices. The the housing market crashed and the economy began to go south. So the issues have shifted, and two years from now they'll shift some more.

One of the problems with John McCain as President is that he is impulsive. He doesn't like to listen to other people and he sometimes makes decisions that are downright scary. One of those decisions was picking Sarah Palin as his running mate without doing too much investigation.

Let's put aside all the stuff about Palin's family, and even her "positions" on the issues. She certainly is a conservative. But here's what really scares us: her style of governing, both as Mayor of Wasilla and Governor of Alaska, is remarkably similar to George W. Bush's disastrous approach to the Presidency.

An Wasilla resident, Anne Kilkenny, wrote a letter a couple weeks ago to about forty friends and relatives after McCain named Palin as his running mate. The letter has been verified--Kilkenny is a real person. Some parts are flattering of Palin, others not. You can find the whole letter here.

Here's what really bugged us about the letter. Palin says she is a conservative, but she's the same kind as George W. Bush: a social conservative who doesn't really believe in good, or competent, government, and who doesn't seem to have a clue about fiscal conservatism or sound financial management.

One of Palin's problems is cronyism. To quote Kilkenny: "Sarah complained about the "old boy's club" when she first ran for Mayor, so what did she bring Wasilla? A new set of "old boys". Palin fired most of the experienced staff she inherited. At the City as Governor she hired or elevated new, inexperienced, obscure people, creating a staff totally dependent on her for their jobs and eternally grateful and fiercely loyal — loyal to the point of abusing their power to further her personal agenda, as she has acknowledged happened in the case of pressuring the State's top cop."

[Kilkenny also says that Palin "oversaw thegreatest expansion of city government in Wasilla's history. "]

Cronyism--and putting loyalty ahead of competence--has been hallmark of the Bush administration. Remember Michael Brown, the head of FEMA during Hurricane Katrina? ("Brownie, you're doing a heckuva job.") He's just the most famous of many such examples. The Dept. of Justice was filled with these people, as were most other federal agencies.

Every new President puts his people in place--we get that. But a President can put in COMPETENT people, and it's damned important.

The other scary thing about Palin is that she, like Bush, seems to have no concept of sound financial management. Bush pushed through a huge tax cut and then borrowed like crazy to finance his incompetently waged war in Iraq.

What about Palin? Again, quoting Kilkenny: "In this time of record state revenues and budget surpluses, she [Palin] recommended that the state borrow/bond for road projects, even while she proposed distribution of surplus state revenues: spend today's surplus, borrow for needs. "

Kilkenny describes how Palin did the same for Wasilla, saddling the town with considerable debt after inheriting none when she took the job.

Kilkenny also describes Palin's effort to oust the town librarian after the librarian rebuffed Palin when Palin asked what would happen if she wanted to have some books removed from the library. [There are emails circulating, and blogs posting, erroneously describing this and claiming that Palin specifically had a long list of books banned--that didn't happen, but it might have if
town citizens had not rallied to the librarian's defense when Palin sent her a termination letter.]

So what we have here is a candidate for President--McCain--who is somewhat independent of his party's dogma, but who's impulsivity is so great that he would put a heartbeat from the Presidency a woman who he knew virtually nothing about and who has been little tested beyond the petty politics of a pretty small town.

Worse yet, we have as a vice presidential candidate a woman whose governing style embodies the worst flaws of the worst President we've ever had!!!

We hope the mainstream media will move away from the superficialities they've been fixated on and start to concentrate on these more important issues of governance.

1 comment:

TAZOR said...

You've done a great analysis of Palin. Unfortunately, Palin's lack of accountability excites the GOP base, something McCain couldn't do.

The GOP is not used to new faces. Did you know that since 1944 the GOP presidential ticket had one of the following names: Goldwater, Dewey, Nixon, Dole or Bush? That's right, the current party that's trying to act like agents of change have had one of these 5 names on the ticket in the last 16 elections?