Monday, November 03, 2008

Klear as Kristol

I really do have a problem with Bill Kristol. I can't help it. Today he has a stupid columnin the NY Times about how liberals are going to be fine if McCain wins... I presume it's supposed to be amusing - I cannot believe he'd be seroius - but it's just facetious and annoying. In response to his points:

1) McCain's the underdog. Really? I don't hear anyone saying they won't vote for an ex-Marine white guy, but you do hear an awful lot about people not voting for Obama because he's black. That just automatically underdogs you, when people cannot bear the thought of voting for you because of the colour of your skin. Because you have to discount them, and all the misconceptions and prejudices that others who are not as overt have about you, your wife, your children.

Further, the reason Kristol cites is that the Obama campaign was a multi-million juggernaut, and he conveniently forgets just why it raised so much money: lots of small contributions from record numbers of people. It's not just the amounts that are the stuff of record, but the sheer quantity of people who contributed. McCain's money came predominantly from the Republican establishment and the RNC, and the highest paid people on that staff were Palin's wardrobe and make-up consultants. Hmm, underdog indeed.

2) A defeat for the establishment. McCain only stayed in the Navy, according to some, because his Daddy ran the whole thing; he has been in the Senate umpteen years and is the embodiment of cozy establishment. Sarah Palin is also pretty cozy with the Washington establishment. Kristol claims the establishment nature of Obama is evident because Republican insiders are endorsing him; but surely, if they weren't, that would be evidence for how he's not ready to be President? You can't have it both ways - if he's criticised he's unsuitable, if he's endorsed he's an insider.

3) A victory for McCain is one for hope over fear, because it won't be just a retaliation for the Bush years. This one is just laughable. I suggest you just look at it in order to cry with laughter / bemusement at Kristol's depth of delusion. Again, if it's supposed to be funny, it is unfortunately coming across as facetious.

4) A victory for freedom. Hmm, because he caved over the torture Bush's administration may perform? He states that genocidal perpetrators will sleep less soundly during a McCain administration; Al-Qaeda endorsed McCain. What to do? Strange how "freedom" no longer means traditional constitutional civil liberties - freedom of speech, equal protection, right to be free of search and seizure - but means "freedom from terrorist attacks." National security does not equal freedom. Not that I'm a huge fan of Obama's voting for the wiretapping, either - I just don't think Kristol has a clue what he's talking about, because Republicans and the right have so far warped people's conceptions of personal freedoms that they honestly believe this is what it means. As a friend said to me last night, restricting American values of freedom in order to preserve American values of freedom doesn't really work.

5) Better for liberalism to have a mixed Congress etc. Maybe it worked before, but it's not good for us right now. Clinton caved to the conservatives in Congress by introducing and signing Don't Ask, Don't Tell as a way of dealing with the issues of gay people serving in the military. That's a good example of "compromise" legislation. Not that good stuff didn't happen with that mixture, but right now, liberals need to get their judges into the judiciary and need to get rid of the Global Gag rule and Abstinence-Only Funding and overhaul all the disastrous legislation Bush wrought (No Child Left Behind, anyone?). Bush has vetoed more legislation than anyone in history - does anyone really think Palin (Kristol's choice for President) would be any different if people did stuff she didn't like, particularly given her behaviour during Troopergate? I fear again for the DOJ and US Attorneys if she ever takes charge.

Right, that's out of my system.

Vote tomorrow. Please.

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