I know he irritates a few people, but I’m rather glad that Steve Crickmore sticks around here and comments. He gives us a great insight into the mainstream left, and gives me great grist for postings. And two of his recent themes are worth addressing.
The first one is his assertion that President Obama is “governing as a centrist.” This is one of the current complaints of the left, because he hasn’t granted them all the rampant, rabid liberalism they are convinced he promised them during the campaign.
The first flaw here is, Obama didn’t make all those promises. For example, on gay marriage, he is on record — repeatedly — as a supporter of the Defense of Marriage Act. What his supporters heard was Obama hinting that he agreed with them, but couldn’t say so openly — and they ran with that. (It’s akin to how Pat Buchanan almost entirely avoids saying things that are explicitly anti-Semitic or pro-Nazi, but the white supremacists and racists believe they get his wink and nod.)
The second flaw is, Obama is simply not “governing as a centrist.” Obama is a hard-left idealogue, and tries to govern like that. But what happens is he doesn’t realize when he’s overreaching and gets his wrist slapped. At that point, he pulls a classic “I meant to do that” — most often using one of his favorite cliche’s, “as I said” — and tosses his previous position under the bus. He never admits that he was in error, just attempts to rephrase the debate and redefine his initial position. His core positions never change, they just get postponed a bit.
Steve’s other delusion is about Sarah Palin. (Man, she really does live rent-free in leftists’ head, doesn’t she?) According to Steve, she is a very dangerous person — petty, vindictive, ignorant, stupid, and eager to impose her idea of a Christian theocracy on America.
Here’s where it gets fun. Palin is demonstrably none of those things. Further, her own history shows that she — not Obama — is the true master of “governing from the center.”
Sarah Palin’s first major move was after she lost her race for Lieutenant Governor of Alaska, and was appointed to the state’s Oil And Gas Conservation Commission. This was a sop to her — a recognition of her popularity and power, a move to co-opt her into the state’s corrupt Republican machinery.
Palin didn’t let herself be bought off. She discovered the corruption was deeper than she had thought, and fought back. She was constrained, however, by the rules of the Commission — so she resigned and went public with her accusations. The ensuing scandal took down the state’s GOP chairman, as well as the Attorney General (another Republican). She worked with several Democratic officials in this, when most Republicans were content to go along to get along.
Note that carefully: Palin discovered corruption within her own party, and fought it. She even reached across the aisle, putting principle above party. And she won. Barack Obama, who has long had associations with some of the most disreputable, corrupt scumbags in Democratic politics (an unavoidable situation for anyone from the Chicago machine), like Rod Blagojevich, Tony Rezko, and a host of others, and has never once challenged them. One of Obama’s core principles (yes, he has a couple) is a wholehearted endorsement of “go along to get along.”
Palin rode that win (which she achieved by resigning — note that carefully, folks) to the governorship of Alaska, again taking on the GOP establishment. Once in office, she carefully built a coalition in the legislature made up of Republicans and Democrats to enact her agenda.
That coalition fell apart when she was tapped as John McCain’s running mate. Suddenly the Democrats who’d worked with her found themselves under great pressure to distance themselves from her. It was one of the factors behind her resignation — along with the crushing legal bills inflicted on her, her staff, and the state by the assholes filing the bullshit “ethics” charges. (At the time of her resignation, her legal bills had reached double her family’s annual income, 40% of their entire net worth, and the latest challenge would have deprived her of a legal defense fund, leaving her and her aides to pay the bills themselves.)
But back to Steve’s image of Palin. She’s a fundamentalist Christian who wants to impose her religious beliefs on the nation. She’s also a petty and vindictive person who engineers revenge on those who have wronged her.
The funny part of this is, there is zero evidence for most of this, and what does have some corroboration is very, very shaky. During her term as Mayor or Governor, she never tried to impose her religious or moral beliefs on people. She actually kept a pretty damned decent distance between her church and her state.
As for the “vindictive” and “short-tempered” bits, pretty much the single source for that was a Vanity Fair hit piece from last October — and that story has been shredded since it was published. Even Palin detractors quoted in it say that the story was atrocious.
I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve divulged the big secret to understanding Sarah Palin: just listen to her. Pay attention to what she says and writes and does. There’s not only no need to try to interpret her hidden agenda or look for weasel words or loopholes or try to figure out what she “really” means, it’s downright counterproductive — it ain’t there.
On the other hand, the opposite is true of Obama. You need to take an Obama statement, diagram it out, run it past three or five attorneys and a couple of semanticists, compare it with his past statements, and then realize that once you’ve figured out what he meant, that promise has passed its expiration date.
(Here’s a hint: whenever Obama says “as I’ve said” or something like that, he’s shoveling as fast as he can. Along with “let me be clear,” “make no mistake,” “I will not sleep until,” and so on. )
Do you know what the dirty little secret is among Palin-hating Obama supporters? Projection.
Take any of their standard criticisms against Palin and hold them up against Obama. The odds are that not only will they fit, but they’ll fit even better on him.
She’s inexperienced? Look at his resume.
She’s gaffe-prone? Take away TOTUS (Teleprompter Of The United States), and he’s almost as bad as Biden.
She’s looking to be a tyrant? He’s now working to federally regulate what can be sold at school bake sales, and he’s got the feds breathing down the necks of yard sales. (Remember the mess over “reselling toys that might contain lead” that included garage sales?)
Palin’s associations with Christian fundamentalists and Alaskan separatists show where her true sympathies lie? Show me a single Palin “associate” as loathsome and dangerous as William Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, Tony Rezko, Rod Blagojevich, Andy Stern, Rashid Khalidi, ACORN, and the like.
Thanks again for sticking around, Steve. I really appreciate what you bring to the table.