The Lifeguard Likes!
An eternity ago, before the Republican National Convention began, then-presumptive nominee, Senator John Sidney McCain, III (R-AZ), selected a little-known governor to be his running mate. The fact that she was from Alaska, a conservative, and an (attractive) woman made her all of the more stellar as a choice.
You see, Governor Palin brings a lot to the table. She is a governor (and, former mayor), so she has more executive branch experience than the other three candidates combined. (Well, Senator Obama was the president of the Harvard Law Review. He was also a community organiser, so I guess the whole "experience thing" is off of the table.) As governor, she is the commander-in-chief of the Alaska National Guard, the group (in large part) responsible for security on the Alaska Pipeline. Her son is in the military. She is plain-spoken, looks good in a skirt, and can bullseye a womp rat from her T-16 Skyspeeder.
She had the good sense to thank Geraldine Ferraro and Senator Hillary Clinton for their work in breaking down the so-called glass ceiling; and, she has demonstrated--thus far--that a woman can be feminine and powerful. Indeed, as I was saying to someone the other day (in response to a question about why the left doesn't like Governor Palin), "She is not someone a feminist can relate to, easily. She hunts, she fishes, and she doesn't look like...well...me."
In much the same way that many Democrats label Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice a " house nigga"; or, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas an "Uncle Tom", women hating the choice of Governor Palin is not surprising. They don't see themselves as strong-willed, hockey-playing, M.16 shooting, dress-wearing, successful women. They support abortion, gun control, and a ban on offshore drilling. Since Governor Palin thinks differently, they discount her--immediately--as a cynical and unqualified choice to be Candidate McCain's second. [Frankly, if I were in a duel with Senator Obama, I would want Governor Palin to be my second. I am pretty sure that she could kick Senator Biden's ass.]
And while I am not a big fan of Senator McCain, his choice of Governor Palin gives me a reason to vote for him. She is strong on energy policy, and understands that ANWR is a wasteland that should be explored. Her husband is an oil man, and a member of the United Steelworkers Union. It is likely that she understands that more exploration and drilling means more high-paying union jobs here in America. It means jobs in Alaska, in the South, and the Far West. It means mining coal in Pennsylvania and West Virginia (and the highly-paid but dangerous jobs that accompany mining). Finally, her support of domestic energy production means more refineries, pipelines, and nuclear (and other) power plants. In short, good jobs with good wages.
In fact, if the McCain/Palin ticket were smart, this is the only thing that they would be talking about for the next seven weeks. Jobs, jobs, jobs.*
Which brings me to my encounter last Thursday night:
Hot Independent Girl (named Kathryn): "The choice of Sarah Palin pushed me into the Obama camp.
HIGNK: "She is just too inexperienced to be President of the United States."
Me: "Huh? She is a governor, has been a mayor. In short, she has the executive experience that no one else--on either ticket--has."
HIGNK: "Well, I figure that neither a 72 year old nor a black man will make it through four years in office, so I want a Vice President who is ready to step into the Oval Office and lead this country. I think Biden is a better choice."
Now, that's cynical.
*The Lifeguard is available as a political consultant to the Republican National Committee (or, the Democrats, for that matter), as long as the money is right.