The Straightaway

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The Palins and the Alaskan Independence Party

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Since it is Obama’s guilty-by-association headlines (former Weather Underground member William Ayers) that have been dominating the media, it is only fair to present Sarah Palin’s: her husband, Todd Palin.

Todd Palin was a member of the Alaskan Independence Party from 1995-2002. The AIP is a libertarian political party that advocates strong states rights, including the repatriation of all federal lands in Alaska to the state.

It has been claimed that the AIP is a secessionist party. Although there may be members of the party that wish to secede from the Union, it is not part of the party platform, as posted on the AIP website. However, the ultimate goal of the AIP, also posted on the website, states:

The Alaskan Independence Party’s goal is the vote we were entitled to in 1958, one choice from among the following four alternatives:

1) Remain a Territory.
2) Become a separate and Independent Nation.
3) Accept Commonwealth status.
4) Become a State.

Basically, the AIP wants the citizens of Alaska to be presented with the option of secession, if it so chooses. Secession would be a possibility if this ultimate goal were achieved, but it cannot be construed as a direct aim of the party by this wording. (The AIP must have commissioned a top-notch lawyer to write this, because it is perfectly worded, masking unconstitutional secession as a primary goal).

Sarah Palin has never been a member of the party. However, she did address the party’s convention via video earlier this year. Much the same way that George W. Bush addressed the Republican National Convention, via video screen.

Here’s Palin addressing the 2008 AIP Convention:


RNC Wednesday Rundown: Venom without Substance

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Click on the image to see Giulianis 2008 RNC speech.

Click on the image to see Giuliani’s 2008 RNC speech.

Rudy Giuliani‘s energetic speech was filled with direct, personal attacks on Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama. Giuliani kept the attacks coming all night, on anything from Obama’s experience as a community organizer to his foreign policy stances. Giuliani promoted the standard Republican line on McCain as a heroic POW war hero who is ready to lead America. Giuliani offered his own delusional foreign policy ideas, somehow managing to bring up September 11th. Again. (Surprise, Surprise!). The most effective and substantive part of Giuliani’s speech was his assertions on Obama’s flip-flopping tendences:

“They would have acted in their self-interest, and they would have changed their position in order to win an election. How many times have we seen Barack Obama do this?

Obama — Obama promised to take public financing for his campaign, until he broke his promise.

Obama — Obama was against wiretapping before he voted for it.

When speaking to a pro-Israeli group, Obama favored an undivided Jerusalem, like I favor and like John McCain favored. Well, he favored an undivided Jerusalem — don’t get too excited — for one day, until he changed his mind.

Well, I’ll tell you, if I were Joe Biden, I’d want to get that V.P. thing in writing.”

Overall, a solid, rousing speech that didn’t say much about the issues.

Click on the picture to view VP nominee Sarah Palins speech wednesday at the Republican National Convention.

Click on the picture to view VP nominee Sarah Palin's speech wednesday at the Republican National Convention.

Sarah Palin‘s vice presidential speech, written by a former Bush speechwriter, was a smashing success inside the RNC hall. Palin established herself as a small-town mother with strong family values, which is sure to excite the evangelical conservative base. She showed that she has the potential to fill the VP-Attack-Dog role well, hitting Obama constantly and very personally.

“I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a ‘community organizer,’ except that you have actual responsibilities.”


“For a season, a gifted speaker can inspire with his words. For a lifetime, John McCain has inspired with his deeds.”

Palin gave the usual inspiring rhetoric about John McCain, etc., but overall, her speech had little, if any, substance. She constantly attacked Obama’s policies, including a woefully erroneous assertion on taxes that leads one to believe that she is either a comfortable liar, or very misinformed on the issues – either would be dangerous, the former for the Obama campaign, the latter for the American people.

Palin came off as fiery but likable – her likability might allow her to get away with a lot. However, her barbs were deep and painful, some very dishonorable in a way that really contrasts with McCain’s respectful style. However, I suppose that is vice presidential politics.

Palin’s speech will galvanize true conservatives, but will do little, perhaps even repel, the independents they need to secure. Palin is quickly becoming the Republican Hillary Clinton, in the sense that she is a polarizing figure beloved by her party but absolutely abhorred by the opposition.

Sarah Palooza

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Republican presidential nominee John McCain set off a media frenzy today by choosing Sarah Palin as his vice presidential running mate. News of the Palin Decision led 95 percent of America to ask – Sarah Who?

Sarah Palin, currently the governor of Alaska, is a 44-year old former beauty queen and mayor of a small town in Alaska. She had been casually mentioned as a possible VP choice for McCain, but was thought to be well behind other hopefuls in the running, such as Independent/Democrat Joe Lieberman, Mitt Romney, and Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty.

Is this dark horse a good pick for McCain? I think Ed Rollins of CNN said it best – the choice is “brilliant but risky.”

Choosing Palin has started a media circus that has been successful in taking away a lot of the buzz from Barack Obama’s monumental acceptance speech at the Democratic National Convention on Thursday. She’s a fresh face, much like Obama was, and will be severely scrutinized coming into next week’s Republican National Convention in Minnesota.

Palin is young – just 44 – evening out the aged McCain ticket. She is also a woman (a likeable one) that may very well steal away some Hillary supporters who were already thinking about voting for McCain. Ingeniously, McCain has subdued Obama’s History Train. Now, whoever wins this fall will surely make history, putting either the first African-American or woman president/vice president in power.

Palin has been described as both “maverick” and “very conservative,” two terms that usually don’t go together. However, they fit here, much like the “maverick” yet “very liberal” tag might fit Obama – Palin is a Washington outsider who is not afraid to lock horns with the Republican establishment. However, she is also staunchly pro-life, which may lure many social conservatives who have been weary about McCain into actually casting a ballot for him this fall.

Now, the risky side of Palin: she is even greener than Obama. She has been governor less than two years, has no experience at the national domestic level and on foreign policy issues. When asked earlier if she would like to be vice president, she answered that she wasn’t even really sure what responsibilities the vice president held. Any “inexperience” knives that the McCain camp tries to throw at Obama now can be deflected and returned, perhaps in greater force.

Obama has accused the Republicans constantly of resorting to the “politics of fear” to steer people away from voting from Obama. The Democrats have potentially been handed their own fear-mongering “gift issue” if the dare us it. Imagine this revised version of the 3 AM Red Phone Call Ad:

It’s dark. 3 AM. The red phone is ringing. The executive must make a crucial security choice. But John McCain isn’t there to answer it – he has been incapacitated. It is up to young Vice President Palin to answer the call and save America. Do you trust her, if need be, to answer the 3 AM call? Do you trust her enough to put America in her hands?

It would be a despicable move, something that might tarnish the reputation of the Democratic machine forever. But it just might work, drawing away the centrist blue-collar folks in states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Ohio away from this attractive new McCain-Palin ticket and into the comforting arms of Obama-Biden. And it’s not an entirely fantastical situation – often in American history, for one reason or another, the vice president has had to take over the president’s duty, either on a temporary or permanent basis. (Vice President Dick Cheney had presidential power vested in him at least once during this term, when President George W. Bush was undergoing a medical procedure).

McCain has made a shrewd choice, dampening Obamamania a bit while adding a little fanfare to his ticket at the same time. It will either turn out to be a brilliant strategic move, or an irreparable blunder.

We’ve got 68 days ’til we find out which one it will be.

Written by acs2008

August 30, 2008 at 4:40 am