Posts Tagged ‘Tea’

Why They Hate Us

Saturday, August 27th, 2011
Over the Precipice

It’s the reflexive reaction of those who have the most to lose, and their numbers are substantial. In their self-delusions, they’ve continued to pretend to themselves that everything will go on as it has for more than two generations, with no interruptions in the gravy train, and their stubborn indifference to the mathematical certainty permits them momentary refuge against a reality they’ve created but wish not to endure. When a voice rises to warn them, they dutifully dismiss it. When the Tea Party arose, they were faced with a messenger they could not so easily silence. Worse, when Sarah Palin became one of their number, they allowed themselves to be seduced by the establishment’s siren song, offering to them a gentle lullaby that promised the gravy train would continue. The media told them that Sarah Palin is stupid, and that the Tea Party is a small band of nuts, and since that message comforted them, they greedily accepted it. After more than two years, some of them have noticed that the wheels are coming off and the rails are splitting, and a few have begun to leap from the sides. Their hatred of Sarah Palin and the Tea Party is not born of ignorance, but of a knowing resentment that these messengers had been right all along.

Friday, we were treated to the news that the GDP growth estimates for the second quarter was downgraded from an already anemic 1.4% to an astonishingly lower 1.0%. While most of you expected a downward revision, as did I, and I expect another later this year, the Europeans aren’t faring any better, coming in around 0.2%. This suggests a global catastrophe is already underway. There can be no way to repair all the things that ail our economy by spending more money, printing more money, or otherwise putting good money after bad. While Sarah Palin and the Tea Party recognize this, the gravy train chugs along happily down the tracks, most of its passengers enjoying their free rides apparently oblivious to the fact that the trestle ahead has been demolished.

The problem is that not all of them are oblivious, and any of them could sound the alarm to their fellow free-riders. Most of them, having mocked the stalwart messengers now want no part in raising the alarm. Every one of them knows that in so doing, they’re inviting the scorn and derision of the rest who will likely continue to evade reality until gravity takes control at the end of their track. Then they’ll panic, and complain that somebody should have warned them, despite the fact that against each successive warning, they hurled only contempt.

It’s a firmly established norm in human psychology that few like to be reminded: “I told you so.” Worse, when those who are being told a thing mock those doing the warning, the mass psychology leverages in favor of a bullying response. As the train rushes closer to the abyss, more aboard will notice, and sneak quietly to an exit and and in an act of self-preservation, hurl themselves from the train, often to pretend they’d never been aboard. Those who remain aboard to the bitter end necessarily become more angry as they notice their numbers slowly diminishing. Here is where real hate is born. This is also where we have arrived. The train is still careening toward the precipice, and its passengers still ride, hoping they were somehow right, and that somehow, their view will be vindicated. It won’t.

Meanwhile, Sarah Palin and the Tea Party continue to urge them to abandon the train. With each pronouncement, the train loses a few more passengers, but the remainder become still more stubborn in resisting the call. The engineer, now Barack Obama and his crew of coal-men in Congress continue to stoke the engine and drive it forward at break-neck pace, hoping that the acceleration will imply confidence. It no longer does. Like the end of credibility for the boy who thrice cried wolf, nothing this President can do will convince any but the drones that our situation isn’t awful.

The establishment in Washington DC has a captive audience, and they know it. Peddling hate and resentment is the last stunt remaining in their bag of tricks. It’s easier to “shoot the messengers” than to refute them. No honest refutation exists. They now stare openly at the abyss coming into view outside their windows, but like passengers on a train, they can see the gorge stretching out for miles in either direction, but they cannot see the bridge out directly ahead. That doesn’t mean they don’t know it.

Our nation needs to reduce the spending on almost every social program. There’s really no way to get control of this train and bring it to a stop in time to repair the bridge if we don’t substantially curtail big government. Those who stubbornly refuse to see what they know must be ahead are guilty of the sin of self-fraud. Those leading them are guilty of a monstrous lie. Not only do they continue to hand out the blinders, but also to scapegoat others for the impending consequences. This is the purpose of calling Tea Party members “terrorists” and Sarah Palin “stupid.” The hatred attending those pronouncements isn’t really aimed at the people involved, but instead at the truth they’re dispensing to the unwilling segment of their audience.

Imagine arriving at a social services office and picketing the people standing in line, telling them that they are bleeding the country dry. What would happen to you? In effect, this is the message being delivered, and this is a large segment of that unwilling audience. What do you expect? They might start out mocking and jeering but eventually, they’d get ugly with you, and the reason is that people don’t like to be told they’re doing wrong. People don’t like to be told their own choices have led them to the problems they now face. People don’t want to be reminded “I told you so.”

You wonder where the hate originates? It is born of this reality of human existence: You have the right to believe whatever you want, but no right to evade the consequences for faulty beliefs. Nothing can ultimately protect a people from a belief that they can exist without effort, or that they can long consume more than they produce. Nothing. Not slogans, not blinders, not governments, nothing.

Once you realize this, the hate is much easier to understand. It’s the last pathetic scream of persons too long in denial. There’s a tendency among some to interpret it as a sign that the messengers are winning. That’s not so. Nature is winning. Reality is winning, but there is no guarantee that the messengers will avoid their usual punishment for their good deeds. The more numerous the messengers, the better, and they ought not miss an opportunity to multiply their numbers. As I’ve told you before, there’s a war coming, and it won’t be pretty, or easy. The hate you’ve had aimed at you is just the opening salvo. Can you win? Yes! Will you win?

Will you fight?

Some of You Tea Party Folk Think Perry’s the Answer?

Saturday, August 27th, 2011

Looks Tough Firing Blanks

If you’re a Tea Party member, or you have significant sympathies with them, I’d caution you against climbing aboard Rick Perry’s TransTexasCatastrophe.  The Media is doing everything possible to paint this guy as a bronc-busting, cattle-roping, Texan, but in truth, there are more than a few things you ought to know about him.   He’s no friend to individual rights, except in an election season, and he’s not really the trend-setter he’d have you believe.  His record on jobs isn’t actually so swift as he’d have you believe, and he’s got less in common with the average Texan than he does with the Wall Street types with whom he prefers to consort.  He’s no friend of Main Street, and he’s certainly no friend to real entrepreneurs, and for all his posturing as one of us, he isn’t, and it’s been quite plain.  Those of you from outside Texas can be forgiven for mistaking Perry for a conservative.  It’s assumed because he’s a Republican, and he’s from Texas, he must be. Let me now explain a bit of why this isn’t the case.

Friday I heard the increasingly estimable Mark Davis claim that you shouldn’t mind that Perry converted from the Democrat Party to the Republican Party because, as he points out, Ronald Reagan was once a Democrat too.  Of course, this is a lie by omission, because what Davis doesn’t mention is that it was a long stretch of years between Reagan’s conversion and his arrival in California electoral politics.  This isn’t the case with Rick Perry.  He was Al Gore’s Texas Campaign Manager in 1988, and following the loss, immediately reversed course and ran as a Republican.  I don’t know about you, but despite Davis’ rather disingenuous interpretation of Reagan’s conversion, painting it as just alike, I’m inclined to believe he left some details out intentionally.

Rick Perry has been a regular guest on Davis’ show on WBAP in the D/FW area for years, and to consider Davis anything like an objective or unbiased voice in this stretches all credulity.  Frankly, I hope Limbaugh finds somebody else to be a regular fill in, because Davis is clearly in the tank for Perry, and it runs against Limbaugh’s general premise that he will take no position in a Republican primary, except in general terms on behalf of conservatism.

You may have heard some of Perry’s more recent statements about conditions along the Texas border with Mexico, and you might be inclined to believe Mr. Perry thinks more should be done.  He even tried to repair his credibility on the issue by being broadcast on a live feed from a base of operations near the border for an interview on Greta Van Susteren’s show.   If you believe that stage-managed bit of theater, I’m inclined to let you know right now that he’s relatively no more conservative in real terms than George Bush, which is to say on the matter of his statist, globalist reflexes, he’s no conservative at all.  I’d hate it if anybody else broke the news to you, because I believe bad news is best delivered by a friend.  Check out the following video for where Rick Perry really stands on issues of the border:

I realize there’s a tendency to overstate things in the name of supporting one’s position, but it’s really no exaggeration to suggest that Perry isn’t really very close in his thinking to Tea Party Members, not when measured against what he’s been saying since October 2010, but in what he has said all along throughout his career.  He’s taken money and support from La Raza, ACORN, and other groups that advocate spending tax-payer dollars for dubious programs and projects.

He’s also a crony-capitalist.  If you’re like me, that’s simply something you can’t abide.  I love the free market, but Governor Perry’s revolving door between his staff and corporate boardrooms is a well-established phenomenon, and frankly, if you buy into his nonsense, he’s going to wind up exploiting your good intentions too.  Companies like Merck and Cintra are more his style, and his staff has reflected this over the years of his gubernatorial reign.

You’ve undoubtedly heard about the Gardasil flap, and likely been willing to dismiss it as a fluke.  That would be a serious and potentially tragic mistake.  The most ridiculously egregious thing he may have done in his tenure as Governor of Texas was the proposed TransTexas Corridor.  You may have heard of it, but may not have any details, so let me expound on that for a moment or two.  This was the project that first enlightened me to Perry’s big government answers to all things.  The upshot is this:  It was to be a vast network of toll roads, but more, it would have included some form of light and heavy rail, pipelines, and all manner of things.  On the surface, this might sound attractive, but as with any such project, the devil lies in the details.

The plan included 4400 linear miles of a toll road network, running parallel in many cases to existing Highways and Interstates already in existence.  The corridor’s right of way was to be a full 1/4 mile wide.  Simple math tells you that even ignoring junctions and interchanges, this would have consumed 1100 square miles of Texas’ territory.  You might argue that while it’s a lot of land, Texas is a big state.  That’s all well and good if the state already owns the land, but since it doesn’t, it was going to acquire it by use of eminent domain. Again, you might argue that building roads is one function for which eminent domain ought to apply, but once you look at the rules to be applied to this project, you might well conclude otherwise. Rather than basing their offers to property owners on free market value, they instead intended to limit it to “fair market value” as determined by a panel of cronies they would gin up for the chore.

This project actually proposed bisecting county and farm roads, and even property, dead-ending what are fairly important thoroughfares for the communities they serve.  More, it would have bisected school districts and even towns along its path.  Again, you might think that impossible until you understand that this was to be a closed system with few exits or on-ramps, only permitting access at major Highway and Interstate junctions.  This threatened to destroy many rural communities, and they rose up against it.  Once the details became clear to the public, it was quickly sent back for re-work, and eventually dumped.

Here were the things they didn’t advertise, but you need to know. It was supposed to be operate by a concessionaire, Cintra, for a period of 50 years.  It was going to employ tolls of roughly $0.26 per mile.  A geographical understanding of the scale of Texas immediately prompts the question: “Who on Earth would voluntarily pay to enter a closed-system roadway at that cost over the huge distances in Texas, when a free parallel alternative is just a few miles away in the form of an Interstate, or Highway?”  Good question, and the answer is: Almost nobody.  So how did they intend to make this work?  In 2004,TxDOT applied to the USDOT for a waiver so that they could charge a toll on the existing I-35.  The first leg of the proposed TTC system was called TTC-35, the leg that would run from Laredo to an undetermined point on the Oklahoma border.  In other words, it was a corridor to nowhere, but in order to get you to use it, they were going to toll the free Interstate and let it fall into disrepair.

Opponents at the time argued that the existing I-35 corridor could be widened, and this was met with a dismissive rejection by Perry’s Transportation Commission.  They said it couldn’t be done in a cost-efficient way.  Your confusion at this statement matches that of the average Texan who realizes that this couldn’t possibly be true. How hard is it to add a few lanes here and there?  Yes, you’ll have some eminent domain issues, but nothing on the scale of what the TTC proposed.

They also promised it would promote economic development, but what they kept concealed for a while, until they no longer could do so under the law, was that because it was a closed system, Cintra, the corporation from Spain that would build and operate it, would also have exclusive rights to all concessions along its length. More, due to the limitations on exits and on-ramps, it could never be shown how this colossal highway system would provide any sort of economic boon to anybody, because you wouldn’t be able to access most smaller towns from along its length.  I’m sure you’ll agree with me that the fact that one of Perry’s top staffers was a former Cintra VP, and the fact that one of his own staffers had gone on to work for Cintra had absolutely nothing to do with Perry’s TTC plans. Right?

Ladies and gentlemen, if you’ve fallen prey to the hype about Perry, you may be forgiven, particularly if you’re not from Texas. You’re not aware, as so many here, that Perry isn’t the fellow he’s now being portrayed to be.  He’s not a friend to the Tea Party, despite his seeming 2010 conversion, because much like his conversion in 1989, this conversion also seems to be one of convenience.  I will assure you, this is most definitely the case.

Perry likes to put on an act about his conservative credentials, and his sympathies with the Tea Party, but if the truth is told, he’s no more one of us than the man in the Moon.  You might want to let your fellow conservatives and Tea Party patriots know it too: We’re being hustled again.

Previous Posts on Perry:
Rick Perry Shows His True Nature
Why Rick Perry Isn’t Suited to Be President

Restoring America Rally Change of Venue

Thursday, August 18th, 2011

In order to increase ease of accessibility, the venue for the Restoring America Rally in Waukee, Iowa, September 3rd, has been changed.  Sarah Palin will be the keynote speaker! Please read the notice below, and spread the word to those who you know plan to attend:

Restoring-America-Rally.pdf

Thanks to US4Palin for the update!

Dana Perino: Party of Washington DC

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Which Party?

Watching Dana Perino take her well-deserved lumps on Hannity on Tuesday night was one of the few highlights of my day.  Dana Perino and the rest of the DC-insider crowd are approximately what the rest of us out here in “fly-over country” refer to as RINOs.  They serve the interests of a viewpoint that seeks to avoid conflict and confrontation with no boat-rocking while you [quietly]pay the bills.  In short, she serves the Washington DC crowd that isn’t defined by an official party, but instead the all-consuming grasping and groping for power that is the Beltway Axis.   Perino got caught by Hannity when he asked her about her earlier reaction to Iowa Tea Party organizer, Ryan Rhodes, who confronted Obama on Monday.

Perino didn’t like it, thinking it disrespectful to the office of the president that some little person(a.k.a. “Hobbit”) from out in Iowa would dare to challenge the President.  More, she actually defended Biden, who had called the Tea Party “terrorists” or at least agreed with that sentiment as expressed by Congressman Doyle.   While a Republican in name, only the party of Washington DC enjoys her loyalties.

Dana Perino, the Republican?  Yes, that one.   The former Bush Press Secretary took Obama and Biden’s side in this instance against an average guy who is an Iowa Tea Party organizer. Why would she do that?  Well, you tend to speak kindly of those who’ve appointed you to the Broadcasting Board of Governors.  You didn’t know that?  Most people don’t.  Yes, she’s a big government Republican.  Are you shocked yet?  She also works for a public relations firm, Burson-Marsteller, where she serves as a “Chief Issues Counselor,”  and she has acted as Karl Rove’s family spokesperson, informing the media about Rove’s divorce in 2009.

Knowing a bit more about Perino, it’s easier to understand how she’s part of the Washington Insider crowd.   It’s small wonder that she’s not a big fan of Tea Party folks.  The Tea Party stands opposed to the whole stinking system in which she is thoroughly entangled.  When some assert that there’s not a dime’s worth of difference between Republicans and Democrats, Dana Perino is of the sort whose behavior tends to substantiate their point.

The Republicans Dana Perino represents are the sort who think Lisa Murkowski is “a strong conservative,”  as she herself told Neil Cavuto.  She’s also the kind of Republican who doesn’t have any intention of addressing illegal immigration, and attacks those who take a strong stance against illegal immigration.    They don’t experience the problems, so it’s easy for them to sit inside their insular DC bubble and tell the rest of us how to live, and chastise us for what we ought to be willing to accept.

Then you hear Perino criticize Sarah Palin as being inauthentic?  The irony is amazing, and I’m certain Perino knows it.

If you wonder why somebody like Perino could seem to change sides so easily, it’s because you’ve misunderstood on whose side they really stand.   They stand on the side of an establishment in Washington that loves only its own interests.  They’re accustomed to being king-makers, and finishing well out of the running simply isn’t their preferred cup of tea. These are people who trade on the power of their insider connections, and that’s all they have to offer.

If you ask me, this is the larger part of what’s wrong with the Republican party.  People like Perino don’t stand for much of anything unless it’s to advance their own agendas to the detriment and the expense of the American people.  It’s time for a serious reform in the party’s structure, during which Perino and others of her ilk must be unmasked.  Along the way, it will result in the restoration of the nation.

When we go to the polls in 2012, for the primaries and in the general election, I sincerely hope it is part of our goal to show people like Perino the door.  The problem is that when it comes to Washington DC, Perino and her crowd are the home-team, and we’re just visitors, so if we send in a candidate they did not want, you can expect them to treat that President like an occupying foreigner.  They would, in such a situation, act exactly like insurgents in Iraq, seeking to undermine and sabotage such a president every step of the way.  That’s part of why they wish to defeat Palin.  They’ve seen her clean up Alaska, and they don’t want a repeat in Washington.  That’s their turf, and they intend to keep it that way.

Harry Reid says Tea Party Is a Short-lived Phenomenon

Sunday, August 14th, 2011

We Know, We Know...

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, (D-Nevada,) thinks that it’s inevitable that the Tea Party movement will fade away.  Reid believes that the Tea Party is a result of the poor economic conditions prevailing in the country at large, and having survived a strong challenge in 2010, he’s inclined to believe with most of a fresh 6-year term in front of him, it’s going to be smooth sailing.

“The Tea Party was the result of a terrible economy,” he said in an interview Friday. “I’ve said that many times, and I believe that.”

Not satisfied to impugn the Tea Party as a flash-in-the-pan outfit, Reid then went on to tell the  Las Vegas Review-Journal that the Tea Party would lose seats in Congress.

“That [the Tea Party] will pass. They will lose a number of seats next year.”

He spent a much of the interview attacking Republicans in Congress, and continued the Democrat’s narrative that the Republicans are to blame for the downgrade.

Senator Reid has never thought much of the Tea Party, and his dismissive attitude suggests he’s likely to continue to exhibit contempt for people who believe big government has simply grown much too large.  As the Senate Majority Leader, he’s and President Obama were primarily responsible for killing the Cut, Cap, and Balance Bill sent to the Senate from the House.  It was also the only bill rated by S&P as sufficient to stave off a downgrade.

It seems when big spenders like Reid get caught between their well-heeled constituencies and reality, they’ll side with the lobbyists every time.

(H/T to Glenn Cook at the Las Vegas Review-Journal for the interview report, and to WesternJournalism.com for the fine image, which you can click for the article in which they used it. Both are eye-openers.)

Blazing a Trail to Restoration: Texas Group to Travel to Iowa

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

Follow This!

On the 1st of September, if you see this logo (at left) going past on the back of a van,  you may wish to follow it.  It will be on it’s way from Southeast Texas to a special event in Iowa.  Of the all of good reasons to set out for Waukee, Iowa, few could be better than to see Governor Sarah Palin deliver the keynote address at the “Restoring America Rally” hosted by the Tea Party of America, set for September 3rd.   It’s likely to be a very large event, but so far from home, you might not think Texans would bother  to make the long trip.  Of course,  if you’re not a Texan you might not know our gritty determination.  One group from the Southeast  Region of TexasO4Palin is determined to get there on time, and is putting together a caravan.

I talked with the Region’s coordinator, Donna Galloway, and she told me they intend to have a great time.  They’re calling it the Restoration Roadtrip, and they mean business, but like almost every Texan, they know how to make anything fun.

If  you’re interested in getting in on their little roadtrip, contact them here:  setexas4palin@gmail.com

It seems as though more and more Texans are getting involved in supporting Sarah Palin every day. If you’re from the Southeast Region of Texas, and you’re as frustrated as most at what’s been happening in our country, this is your chance to get in there and make a difference in the direction of our nation.  The title of the event says it all.  Come out and help your fellow Texans makes this event a rousing success.  For more details, please see this site.  I’ve been told that other groups in support of Sarah Palin are planning similar things, so check back for updates. I’ll post new information as it becomes available.

Abandoned on the Field as the ‘Nobles’ Surrender

Thursday, August 4th, 2011

The Betrayal of False Compromise

The talking points prevailing in the wake of the debt ceiling debacle would have you believe that this deal had been a compromise, and the best for which conservatives and Tea Party ought to have hoped possible.  At the end of the debates lies a truth concealed by all the fluff:  There was no compromise in this debate; one side prevailed, but it wasn’t the Tea Party.  In a betrayal reminiscent of the movie Braveheart, when the Scottish nobility deserted the field, abandoning William Wallace to defeat, Republican leaders likewise abandoned the Tea Party, not for compromise, but in infamy by betrayal and surrender for the sake of their own hides.

Willing to risk nothing, the Republican establishment has become an increasingly intractable part of the Beltway Axis.  Like the nobles in the movie, they’re taking their special privileges and carve-outs in exchange for their complicity and silence.  For an outcome to be considered a compromise implies that both parties to the exchange ought to have obtained an equal measure of consideration for their parts, in trade for a yielding of approximately equal value.  There can be no compromise where one’s position isn’t ultimately advanced, and any examination of the much-ballyhooed Budget Control Act reveals that for their part, the Republicans accepted complete capitulation with a few face-saving bones thrown their way.  None should be so foolish as to accept these bones for anything other than an insult, and the injury done by this act will exceed by many times the few strings of rancid gristle left to the Tea Party are more cause for anger and despair than for celebration.

Let’s consider what this bill has wrought:

  • A new ‘Super-Congress’ that ultimately answers only to the establishment
  • A total of $917 billion in ‘cut’s the vast bulk of which occur some time in the future
  • A failure to sufficiently reduce deficit spending – credit rating downgrades now seem inevitable
  • A failure to first pass a Balanced Budget Amendment out of both houses
  • A failure to make anything other than token cuts to FY 2012 or 2013
  • A virtual guarantee on the expiration of the so-called “Bush Tax Cuts” in January 2013(after the election)
  • A complex process of ‘triggers’ that allows politicians to shrug their shoulders and disclaim responsibility
  • A guarantee that for at least two years, Barack Obama will continue to spend your money and your future

Now, I’d like to contrast this with what was gained, in exchange, as the nobles quickly scurry from the field of battle, trumpeting “victory” as the advancing tide of Longshanks‘ Army descends upon us to put an end to our ‘uprising’:

  • A vote on a Balanced Budget Amendment with too many loopholes and no guarantee of passage
  • More than $7 Trillion in additional debt
  • A greater proportion of the budget going to service that debt, and at higher rates
  • A brief respite from the harangue that Republicans hate people

This is what the Republican ‘nobles’ quit the fight to achieve by way of so-called  ‘compromise’?  Why bother? Why not simply slap the shackles and chains upon us themselves?  For all intents and purposes, that is precisely what they have done, because this new law does nothing to immediately begin the process of changing our course to something closer to sustainability.  This bill does nothing to preserve the value of the dollar or the credit-worthiness of our government.  This bill is a disaster unmitigated by the bare bones we’re being fed as scrap from the establishment’s table.  Those in the Republican leadership in DC,  who call this bill a ‘compromise,’ are simply concealing what it really is:  Complete betrayal, and unconditional surrender.

Now, there are those conservatives who are still looking for some scrap upon which to rest the premise that this ‘compromise’ has been anything but a disaster, but the proof will be in the final tally of its effects, and from any angle I view it, the alleged benefits are more smoke and mirrors, and the detriments are vast and self-defeating.

There can be no compromise on first principles without an effective surrender.  In this case, what the Republican leadership has accomplished is to deliver the Tea Party and conservatives to the adversary.  For this monstrous betrayal, what have establishment Republicans received?  For all intents and purposes, even they have received nothing, except some temporary restraints in the vile language ordinarily hurled against them.  The target of that defamation is now almost solely the Tea Party, or Sarah Palin.

Compromise offers a potential good, when that’s what it is, but when it’s mere surrender dressed up as ‘pragmatism,’ you had better stand opposed to it.   In this entire miserable battle, only one politician of national prominence continued to rail against these so-called ‘compromises’, and she was berated by Republican operatives and leftists in the media for her trouble.  She warned and cajoled and prompted and yet, at the end of the day, they ignored her, and youSarah Palin stood in as William Wallace in this debate, and the turncoats in the GOP did their level best to deliver her to Edward the Longshanks.  The good news is that we and she survived the engagement, but a new battle is looming.  Don’t leave her on the field as she’s the only prospective presidential candidate who’s stepped onto the field without reservation.  She’s defended your honor and your good name.  It’s time to return the favor.  It’s time to begin to rally to those who dare to put their names at risk, because such people are few, and we know who they are, so if we believe in all that we claim, it’s long past time that we at least stand up to say so.

The Fire In Her Belly

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

I'm Going to Stand

Tuesday night on Hannity, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin exhibited some of that fire.  It’s sure to give the existing Republican presidential field no shortage of heartburn.  She was strongly combative in the face of ridiculous slurs, and not merely those leveled at her, but also those aimed at Tea Party patriots and even talk radio hosts.  Her message was clear and concise:  “Enough is enough!”  Indeed, her words reverberated with with passion for this fight.  Sarah Palin seems intent upon taking up the fight against the entrenched establishment with a vigor that no other prospect of national political prominence is willing to do.

This facet of Governor Palin’s attitude is what Americans have been hoping to see from any of the other presidential prospects in the GOP.  Instead, what they’ve seen is an increasingly invisible and tepid lot of weakly-mumbled remarks in lukewarm defense of the Tea Party, and conservatism.  This is the most significant distinction between Sarah Palin’s electability and that of the other Republican candidates:  Governor Palin has the unique capability to energize crowds, move people to rally with her, and focus their combined strength on virtually any cultural and political issue.  Combined with her commitment to firmly held principles, what the fire in her belly provides is the one thing the GOP needs in a candidate, perhaps more desperately than any other trait:  Sarah Palin has the unrepentant will to stand up and join in  the fight.

It isn’t about simple sloganeering.  Governor Palin seems willing to leave slogans to others, but what her passion indicates is a sincere commitment to the restoration of the republic.  Why wouldn’t she be passionate?  In most every respect, she has much more in common with the average American than any of the other republicans in a position to seek the presidency.   She has every bit as much to lose from the continuation of the current establishment paradigm as any of us.  She’s an entrepreneur who sees the effects of the growing government sector at the expense of the private sector.  Like so many of us, as a parent, and nowadays, a grandparent, she has a deep personal investment in the future of the country, and it resounds in the tone of her voice as she tells her audience that we can’t afford any more of Obama’s disastrous economic policies.  She isn’t just spouting talking points.  She means it.

More importantly, perhaps, it seems many Americans recognize her commitment, her passion, and her sincerity in confronting the crises with which the country is faced.  One fairly reliable gauge I’ve found for evaluating candidates is in the person of my wife.  She’s had an uncanny ability to pick who will win or lose, and she is consistently adept at sizing up candidates.  In 1992, she took one look at Bill Clinton and said: “Oh, wonderful, we’re going to have a used-car salesman for President.”  In 1996, she took one look at the newly-minted Republican nominee, and said: “Just get yourself ready for four more years of Bubba-talk and used cars.”  She’s successfully picked the winner in each subsequent election, mostly on the basis of her relative appraisals of the candidates.  Somehow, she just knows, and while she may not like what her judgments tell her, she’s been remarkably straightforward in stating them.  In 2008, she looked at John McCain, shook her head, and asked: “Why did they nominate him?” Adding more, she nodded her head at the speaker, Sarah Palin, and said: “They could have saved a lot of time and trouble, and four years of pain if they would have just nominated her, instead.”   After a moment more of the governor speaking she looked at me and said: “Don’t worry, she’ll be back.”  I’ve asked her to explain it to me, but she says it’s a ‘woman thing.’  Perplexed as ever when that is offered as the sole explanation, I shrug hopelessly and go on to the things I can measure.

It’s against this back-drop that on Tuesday night, I watched the Hannity interview alone, but I was curious to be able to watch the reaction of a true political skeptic.  Mrs. America walked into the room, and I rewound the DVR to replay it for her, as I settled into a position from which I could watch my wife without making it obvious, and thereby biasing my ‘study.’  Having spent more than two decades as the perpetual cause of most of her more severe facial expressions, I knew that by watching Mrs. America’s face for every raised eyebrow, every tiny widening of eyes, and every re-forming of the shape of her mouth, I would be able to gauge her reaction as a sort of study in the effects Governor Palin might have on an agreeable but not altogether ‘sold‘ viewers.  After forty-six years, I may not know the first thing about ‘women,’ but I know how to read the nuances of the mood of exactly one woman.  When she started to speak, Hannity having posed the question about Biden and the others calling Tea Party Americans ‘terrorists,’ I watched a growing look of inquiring expectancy.  She was waiting for something.  When Governor Palin came out swinging, taking the leftists to task for this latest vile nonsense, I saw the set of a jaw tightening and the barely perceptible nod, and as Mrs. Palin went on, Mrs. America followed.

When Mrs. Palin said “I’m going to stand up…” I saw a brightening of the eyes, and a slight smile begin to take shape from the previously indifferent pose of Mrs. America’s lips.  Every time and in every way she addressed the propensity of Obama to recklessly spend more money, I watched a growing resolve in the set of my wife’s jaw.  When Hannity prepared to go to commercials, he had to make the obligatory inquiry about her plans for 2012, but pressed for time, he tried to suggest one, and Sarah Palin beamed and laughed and that’s when I saw it:  My wife, the hardened cynic, with resolute indifference to most frivolous remarks, had leaned back slightly in her seat, and she had begun to smile with Sarah Palin.

The beauty of DVR technology is that we didn’t need to wait through those commercials.  Advancing  it to the resumption of the interview, Mrs. America, at first sitting forward again, now leaned back against the sofa as if settling in.  When Hannity asked about the notion of ‘compromise,’ here too, my wife leaned forward a bit, as if waiting to hear the answer that would tell the tale of the tape.  As Governor Palin described the need to stand firm, citing Ronald Reagan’s example, I watched something interesting develop on the face of Mrs. America, and it was an expression with which I’m naturally less familiar:  Approval.  Nodding in agreement, I watched my wife’s hand tighten on the remote, and lightly pound it into the top of her thigh.  It was an exclamation point in time with the Governor’s remarks on Cut, Cap, and Balance.  The drumbeat of those words were matched in time by Mrs. America’s.   When Governor Palin analogized her position to that of Hannity, Levin, and Limbaugh, Sean asked if she really thought any of the three could be elected to office.  Sarah Palin’s answer was a laugh, and as she said “Well, I do, but I’m one of those ‘terrorists’…”  My wife had begun to smile again, and now laughed openly, again with Mrs. Palin.  When I saw that, what it told me is that the remainder of the Republican field had better prepare themselves for a serious primary battle.  If Mrs. America’s reactions to Governor Palin are any yardstick by which to measure her presidential prospects, my wife’s little statement to me as she passed back the remote may be the indication: “She’ll do just fine.”   After twenty-three years of marriage and five presidential campaign seasons together, that sort of matter-of-fact appraisal is as much as I will get, and what it tells me is only: She knows.