Monday, September 29, 2008

Waiting for McCain to Go Off? Maybe He Did

The McCain-as-loose-cannon theory has caused many campaign watchers to wait patiently for the moment when candidate John McCain would get so angry that he’d lose his cool in front of TV cameras. A moment highly anticipated because it would be immortalized on You-Tube and replayed forever. But it may be that we witnessed a McCain loose-cannon moment last Wednesday and we didn’t recognize it. Our Republican leaders are so heavily medicated, who would know? Although, last week “Newsweek” made an interesting observation when it wrote that Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson had become President George W. Bush’s surrogate since Bush has abdicated all pretense of leadership. Newsweek noted Paulson is a teetotaler. If Newsweek was using a code to let us know our Prez is drinking again, the magazine would merely have joined a long list of bloggers and commenters who are asserting the same thing. It’s not that Bush is heavily tranked that makes him seem out of it. It’s that he’s drunk. But back to McCain. As Frank Rich said in his op/ed column in the New York Times yesterday (“McCain’s Suspension Bridge to Nowhere”): “The question is why would a man who forever advertises his own honor toy so selfishly with our national interest at a time of crisis. I’ll leave any physiological explanations to gerontologists — if they can get hold of his complete medical records — and any armchair psychoanalysis to the sundry McCain press acolytes who have sorrowfully tried to rationalize his erratic behavior this year.” So, it would seem that John McCain’s minders are as convinced as the rest of us that he’s going to explode at some point and he’s been heavily medicated. But whatever medications John McCain is on can’t keep the man from forever and consistently acting in what he believes is his own best interest. Unfortunately for McCain, he’s 72 years old. He doesn’t realize you can no longer make high-road sounding claims for yourself while doing the opposite. He claimed he was immediately going to suspend his campaign in order to go to Washington to fix the financial crisis. But he didn’t suspend his campaign. None of his campaign sites ceased operation for even a nano-second. And he didn’t rush to Washington. He was filmed going on talk shows in New York to advance his campaign. He said he would not debate Senator Barack Obama last Friday night because his expertise was needed to save the US from ruin. But he did debate Obama. Many sources in Washington were quoted saying McCain not only did nothing to help the financial crisis, he actually obstructed the proceedings and his presence in Washington was not requested by the Repubs, it was dreaded. It looks like the loose cannon fired off a load and it dropped at his feet, dead. And now the latest news from within the McCain camp is that McCain is sorry he picked Palin for a running mate and Palin is sorry she accepted. One thing you can bet on. Palin will talk. Palin will spill her beans. Palin will write a book(s). Palin will unburden herself and betray everyone she knows. Oh happy day!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Ploys, Tactics, Strategies, Game Plans, One-Ups

All candidates use all of the above when running for office. But where McCain and Palin (and Bush before them) are concerned, that’s all there is. Had George W. Bush been truthful when asked how he would accomplish his plan (any plan), he would have said, “By cheating.” Or he would have said, “I haven’t the foggiest notion.” And like George W. Bush, what McCain and Palin do have is Karl Rove and his ploys, tactics, strategies, game plans and one-upmanship. It has now become clear to even such a Republican cheerleader as David Brooks that John McCain hasn't the foggiest notion about anything. After using considerable ink this morning to bloviate about McCain of yore and back in the day, David Brooks finally says in his New York Times Op/Ed column (“Thinking About John McCain”): “...What disappoints me about the McCain campaign is it has no central argument. I had hoped that he would create a grand narrative explaining how the United States is fundamentally unprepared for the 21st century and how McCain’s worldview is different. McCain has not made that sort of all-encompassing argument, so his proposals don’t add up to more than the sum of their parts. Without a groundbreaking argument about why he is different, he’s had to rely on tactical gimmicks to stay afloat. He has no frame to organize his response when financial and other crises pop up.” Exactly when John McCain became a lying, cheating bag of wind is unclear, but it was probably coincidental with the Iraq war. That’s when John McCain became a self-aggrandizing old man fantasizing about his days of glory. And it is that self-aggrandizing old man who suspended his campaign to rush to Washington on Wednesday—if rush is the word that can be used about his various celebrity talk-show stops en route—in order to show Congress how to fix the financial crisis bailout debacle. What McCain envisioned he could or would do, is anyone’s guess. But that is not important to McCain. As even David Brooks has to admit, McCain has no plans or proposals, he only has tactical gimmicks. And if it is now obvious to one and all that John McCain is a pin-prick away from deflating in front of our eyes, it is also clear to reality show aficionados that John McCain and Sarah Palin have both become their own worst nightmare—a political joke and laugh-line for comics. Their final gimmick, I have no doubt, will be to blame Barack Obama and television for their becoming the clowns in a three-ring-circus.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Is Anyone Buying McCain’s Load of Baloney?

Yesterday afternoon at 3:30, an aviso went out from the New York Times that Senator John McCain would “temporarily suspend his presidential campaign on Thursday to return to Washington to deal with the financial crisis and the bailout package pending before Congress” and that “Mr. McCain is asking Senator Barack Obama's campaign and the Commission on Presidential Debates to postpone the debate scheduled for Friday night." Only later did we find out that it had been Obama who called McCain to request that they make a joint appeal for bipartisanship on the bailout package. In a very low-key interview from Florida on CNN’s Situation Room, Obama explained that he had been surprised by McCain’s announcement he wanted to suspend his campaign only ten minutes after Obama had called McCain. Obama said he saw no reason why their campaigns and the debate should not go on as planned. For one thing, Obama wryly noted, presidents should be able to handle more than one thing at a time. No one can fault McCain for grabbing at straws to rationalize taking a break from a campaign that is not going well. The latest Washington Post/ABC poll yesterday showed that Obama had jumped ahead significantly due to the financial crisis debacle. And McCain’s running mate Sarah Palin had not come off well in her Katie Couric interview. In addition, Palin’s being shielded from any interaction with the press had backfired. The press, not unreasonably, feels anyone claiming to be ready to be president of the United States should be available to the press to answer questions about how she would handle issues that might arise. So it’s understandable that John McCain would love to get out of the circumstances he has put himself in, if only temporarily. But the straw McCain chose to seize does not make sense. He says he wants to return to Washington to “focus on the financial crisis”. By doing what? He’s a candidate for President. The only thing he could do is politicize the bailout vote. And that is the last thing this financial debacle needs. It has been suggested that all Obama has to do to win this election is sit back and wait for John McCain’s next boneheaded decision. McCain’s Dumbass Idea Number One Picking Sarah Palin as running mate. McCain’s Dumbass Idea Number Two Abdicating his campaign and debate by claiming he needs to be in Washington to honcho the bailout vote. McCain’s Dumbass Idea Number Three Wait for’s inevitable.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

“The Turd-Icing on the Bush-Term Cake”

Perfect! Last night The Daily Show’s host, Jon Stewart, came up with a strikingly accurate description of the meltdown of the US financial system. He called it “the turd-icing on the Bush-term cake”. Using less graphic language but no less damning rhetoric, Senator Christopher J. Dodd (D-CT) told The Associated Press that the crisis was “entirely foreseeable and preventable, not an act of God”. And not only that, Senator Dodd and Senator Richard C. Shelby (R-AL) agreed that the solution that the Bush Administration’s Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke sent to Congress is “unacceptable”. This morning, the New York Times quoted Senator Dodd saying the Treasury proposal is “stunning and unprecedented in its scope and lack of detail.” At the same time, the NYT reported: “One of the giant mortgage companies at the heart of the credit crisis paid $15,000 a month to a firm owned by Senator John McCain's campaign manager from the end of 2005 through last month, according to two people with direct knowledge of the arrangement. The disclosure contradicts a statement Sunday night by Mr. McCain that the campaign manager, Rick Davis, had no involvement with the company for the last several years." And on Tuesday the AP reported: “The Federal Bureau of Investigation has launched a probe of four major U.S. financial institutions whose collapse helped trigger a $700 billion government bailout plan...two unnamed law enforcement officials said the FBI is looking at potential fraud by mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and insurer American International Group Inc. Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. was said to be under investigation as well.” In addition, the AP said, “In the past two weeks, the government has taken over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the country's two biggest mortgage companies, with a bailout plan that could require the Treasury Department to put up as much as $100 billion for each of them over time if needed to keep them afloat as mortgage losses mount. Last week, the Federal Reserve provided an emergency $85 billion loan to AIG, which teetered on the brink of bankruptcy. Lehman Brothers was forced to file for bankruptcy after attempts to engineer a private rescue fell apart. All the companies were laid low from bad bets on complex mortgage-related securities.” The people who want to keep these clowns in office cannot be reasoned with. They are beyond all hope. I do believe there are enough of the rest of us to save the United States of America from extinction, however.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Repub Ploy: Name a GOP Sin, Call It a Dem Sin

Here’s how it works: Lady Lynn Forester de Rothschild was a rabid supporter of Hillary Clinton. She raised mountains of money for Hillary’s presidential campaign. Lady Lynn and her hubby Sir Evelyn Robert Adrian de Rothschild (of THE banking Rothschilds in England) split their time between New York and a country estate in Britain. But now Lady Lynn has decided to back John McCain’s run for president. She says the reason is because her life “is not a bad life” and she wants everyone in the US to have one just like it. (Read, she's afraid the unworthy Dems will make her life unliveable or illegal.) Yesterday, the fabulously wealthy socialite told Wolf Blitzer on CNN’s Situation Room: "I have a wonderful life. I want John McCain and Sarah Palin in the White House so other people can have that wonderful life.” When Blitzer asked if the Dems were giving her grief, Lady de Rothschild drew herself up and in a fit of pique told Blitzer, "I'm getting it all the time, particularly from the likes of you, the liberal elite," she quipped. "You're the elite, not me." There. See how it’s done? When McCain flip-flops on his stance on issues, he claims it’s the Dems who flip-flop on issues. When Sarah Palin disrespects laws, ethics and displays the socialization of a four-year-old child, she claims she is being disrespected and that she is simply a high-minded Christian lady trying to make her way in a tough world. When Wolf Blitzer asked Lady Lynn if, in fact, the life she leads doesn’t make her elite, Sean Hannity over at Fox blasted Blitzer for being disrespectful. He said Blitzer should be ashamed. Lady Lynn told Blitzer the reason she does not like Barack Obama is because "he's an elitist."

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Sarah Palin’s Run for President

In his New York Times Op/Ed article this morning (“The Palin –Whatsisname Ticket”), Frank Rich relates that Wall Street Journal writer Thomas Frank had identified for us the unnamed writer Sarah Palin quoted in her acceptance speech last week when she aligned herself with President Harry Truman. Palin said a writer had said about Truman, “we grow good people in our small towns, with honesty and sincerity and dignity.” That writer was Westbrook Pegler, powerful fanatic Republican, rabid McCarthyite and Hearst columnist. For those of us who can remember the full nastiness, vitriol, loathing and contempt that Pegler felt for all Democrats. all Jews, all immigrants and everyone in the world (Including Harry Truman) except Republicans, it’s a perfect choice for Palin’s writers to have picked Pegler to honor and quote. As Rich said, Palin knew no more about Pegler than she knew about “Bush’s doctrine”, which question had flummoxed her last Friday when Charles Gibson asked if she agreed with it. But Palin felt so akin to the Pegler words that she added, "it's small-town Americans who run our factories, fight our wars and are always proud of their country." Subtext: the rest of us are scum. But the core of Rich’s article is that Palin’s handlers and Palin herself are no longer interested in her as Vice President to John McCain’s President. It has now been fully realized by the Repubs that McCain is a weak, forgetful old man who cannot draw flies. (Without Palin at his side, McCain could not attract even a small crowd at the Reading Terminal in Philadelphia on Friday.) The unspoken change in the Republican platform (and the change that dare not be spoken) is: Palin for President because the Repubs know McCain will become addled and confused or die in office. Or, addled, confused and die in office. Now no longer is Palin not allowed out on her own, speaking her own mind and promoting the Republican platform of fear. Now McCain cannot be allowed out without Palin because Palin is the crowd-pleaser. Will this freak-show work? If you mean will Palin be able to draw crowds....yes, of course. Will she attract the voters necessary for a Repub win? I doubt it. Starting in 1937 and running until 1959, there was a popular soap opera on CBS radio at 12:45 noon. Every day the announcer said, "Once again, we present Our Gal Sunday, the story of an orphan girl named Sunday from the little mining town of Silver Creek, Colorado, who in young womanhood married England's richest, most handsome lord, Lord Henry Brinthrope. The story that asks the question: Can this girl from the little mining town in the West find happiness as the wife of a wealthy and titled Englishman?" Will Our Gal Palin from a little mining town in Alaska find happiness as the ventriloquist’s dummy for the world’s richest men in the world? Nah!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Palin “Ready” But At Sea Over “Bush Doctrine”

Sarah Palin is a quick study. Narcissists tend to be able to quickly assimilate information. And oh yes, we have another Republican narcissist on our hands (as in, a person who demonstrates a pervasive pattern of grandiosity, need for admiration, and a lack of empathy.) Palin was shipped back to Alaska by her handlers for an intensive cram course in statesmanship. It is yet to be decided by the Repubs whether her interview at the hands of ABC’s Charles Gibson yesterday will be a one-off or whether it will be the first of many. The New York Times this morning said Palin was at times “visibly nervous”, and at other times appeared “to hew so closely to prepared answers that she used the exact same phrases repeatedly, Ms. Palin most visibly stumbled when she was asked by Mr. Gibson if she agreed with the Bush doctrine. Ms. Palin did not seem to know what he was talking about. Mr. Gibson, sounding like an impatient teacher, informed her that it meant the right of ‘anticipatory self-defense.’” Quickly assimilating information is necessary for narcissists because they need to be able to seem to be acting like everyone else in the culture even though they have no understanding of human responses like compassion and altruism. The NYT said, “There were no obvious gaffes during the grilling by Mr. Gibson”. Not true. There was the gaffe by the Repub strategists for letting the weaknesses of their rookie be seen and studied. And that couldn’t be helped. They had to, of course. Palin said, unequivocally and confidently that she is “Ready!” And so her first mistake has been made: Sarah Palin believes she’s ready to be President. Palin’s sights are not on being Vice President. She believes she is ready TODAY to be President of the United States. Remember the one about the little kid in a sailor suit who says to his dad, “Look at me Daddy, I’m an Admiral.” And his daddy says, “Son, by you, you’re an Admiral, and by me you’re an Admiral, but by an Admiral, you’re no Admiral.” The stage is now set for Sarah Palin’s fall.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Palin Is the Perfect Repub Candidate...She Lies

VP nominee Sarah Palin said that Alaska’s 1700-mile pipeline would deliver natural gas from the North Slope of Alaska to the lower 48 states and would be the largest private-sector infrastructure project on the continent. During Palin’s high-decibel (as in shrill) campaign speech Palin said, “And when that deal was struck, we began a nearly $40 billion natural gas pipeline to help lead America to energy independence. That pipeline, when the last section is laid and its valves are opened, will lead America one step farther away from dependence on dangerous foreign powers that do not have our interests at heart.” However, the New York Times revealed this morning: “Ms. Palin has overstated both the progress that has been made and the certainty of success. The pipeline exists only on paper.” Under the most optimistic circumstances, dirt is not expected to be turned for years, the NYT said. “TransCanada’s plan calls for it to file an application with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission by the end of 2011, and to have the pipeline operational by late 2018. The company is not obligated to proceed with the project even if it clears all the financial and regulatory hurdles. “In assessing the state of the project, Mr. Galvin, the state revenue commissioner, avoided the characterization that Ms. Palin employed in her convention speech. A number of important decisions remain in the relationship between the state and TransCanada, he said, including whether the state will ultimately endorse the company’s application to the federal government.” In other words, pie in the sky. Like the Palin e-bay story: "That luxury jet that came with the office... I put it on eBay!" Palin said. The jet may have been put on eBay, but it never sold. And the creative idea was not Palin’s. Alaska Officials had been putting big-ticket items on eBay since 2003, three years before Palin became governor. "The eBay thing didn't work out very well," Dan Spencer, director of administrative services for the Department of Public Safety (the individual charged with trying to get rid of the plane) told the Anchorage Daily News in April 2007. "I am [tired of dealing with it]," he added. "I don't know about anyone else." But poor old doddering John McCain bought the eBay tale and repeated it until he was finally told it was a fiction. Nonetheless, Palin was repeating it endlessly through last week. The jet and eBay may not have been a good fit, but Sarah Palin and the Republican Party are a marriage made in heaven. At least until they start lying to each other.

Monday, September 08, 2008

How Can I Still Be Shocked at George W. Bush?

It’s amazing. Although I have been saying for the last 8 years that GWB is crazy as a loon, delusional, narcissistic and a dangerous Christian right zealot, I was alarmed and stunned while watching the Washington Post’s Editor Bob Woodward on “60 Minutes” last night as he divulged more inside info on President Bush. Woodward’s new book, “War Within” goes on sale today. Woodward conducted more than 150 interviews for this new book, two of which were with George W. Bush. Woodward said on “60 Minutes”: 1) Bush questioned whether our troops in Iraq were really fighting. He knew they were dying but was not sure they were fighting hard enough. 2) ALL the generals Bush queried about the war in Iraq agreed that the surge was not working and that we were losing the war. Bush then found a general who agreed with him—David Petraeus. 3) Bush lied in all his television appearances when he said the war was being won when he knew the US was losing the war in Iraq. 4) Even Dick Cheney told Bush the war was going badly and the US should start withdrawing. Bush insisted the war could be won. 6) To this day, George W. Bush cannot understand why the people of Iraq are not grateful to the United States for “liberating” them. 7) For years, the US has been spying on everything Iraq’s Prime Minister Nouri Hassan al-Maliki says and does. Maliki may or may not know this. (As was noted last night, he knows now.) 8) The US has a secret weapon it’s been using to target and kill insurgent leaders. If the surge has been working, that is the reason why. It has nothing to do with escalating the size of our troop deployment in Iraq. Woodward said he could not divulge what the weapon is but it is as groundbreaking as the tank and airplane were. 9) When asked what George W. Bush would say to the new occupants in the White House, the prez said, “Do not fail in Iraq.” Yes, of course, the current president of the United States is unbalanced, delusional and fighting a holy war in Iraq. But what of the people in the Republican administration who have used the madness of GWB to prolong an unnecessary war for their own corrupt ends, like munitions contracts and war profits? There are high-level Republicans who could have stopped these war crimes and they did not do so. Now it’s up to the rest of us to end this madness the only way we can. By voting. There is only one sane choice: Barack Obama.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Palin Uses Repub Convention to Defend Herself

Last night, the world found out John McCain’s running mate is very good at delivering a speech she didn’t write. Fortunately for Palin, the Republican ticket and the Republican Party, Palin didn’t have to talk about McCain’s vision for the United States, or inform the world of her foreign policy experience, both of which would be normal topics for a Vice President candidate at a National convention. John McCain has a clear vision of himself as a brave former naval aviator who spent six years in a POW prison in Viet Nam. And he has a vision of himself as a forceful maverick Senator. But he has no vision for the United States other than the course laid out by the Bush administration for the past eight years. And, of course, his running mate, Sarah Palin, has no foreign policy experience. So luck was on Palin’s side that she could stand before the world and counter, point by point, the claims of inexperience, ineptitude and questionable behavior that have been raised against her, and not betray how naive, inept and callow she would be as Vice President. Palin was good last night. She energized the totally white Republican Convention in St. Paul. And god knows, the sleepwalking, tired, old John McCain needed a shot of energy. The only problem for the Repub ticket is that between the end of the Republican convention and election day on November 4, voters are going to take a sober look at who the Repubs went to bed with: An old man who has mental and physical health problems and a housewife who has more problems in her home than she can handle. Loyal Republican Rudy Giuliani, who had to withdraw from his 2000 bid for the US Senate because of prostrate cancer and because his personal life was filled with scandal, said that no one would dare say that a man should withdraw from a political career because he needed to take care of his five children, one of whom has Down Syndrome, which has been said of Sarah Palin. That is true, Rudy, because for better or worse, the care giving in a family, traditionally has fallen to the women in a family. And that has not materially changed. Look around, who is ministering to elderly parents, children with problems and sickness in the family? It is mostly mothers, grandmothers and aunts. Sarah Palin said the difference between a pit bull and a soccer mom is lipstick and she was wildly cheered. Think about it. That is not funny. It may be true about Sarah Palin. She may be like a pit bull—mean, snarling, vicious, unthinking and unrelenting—but that is not a good thing. And there are thousands of real soccer-moms who are feeling rightfully offended.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Remember the Movie, “The Candidate”?

There is a scene in "The Candidate" where campaign manager Peter Boyle tells candidate Robert Redford the point of his candidacy: “You lose,” which comes as a surprise to Redford. What if.... What if the whole point of the insane choice of Sarah Palin as John McCain’s running mate is that she not only insure McCain’s loss, but that her foibles, family problems and lack of experience take the spotlight away from the Republican failures of the last eight years. And why would the Republican Party do this? Because it would rather see a Democrat president than John McCain. And what if the Republican Party is sick to death of the religious right and its demands? That’s a stretch, I know. But unless the entire Republican Party has gone as bonkers as George W. Bush, what other reasonable explanation is there, except that the Repubs have orchestrated this entire catastrophe? The Palin soap opera is fascinating I have to admit. It keeps providing bizarre entertainment day after day. And until Democrat VP candidate Joe Biden debates Palin on October 2nd, the Perils of Palin will be the best and strangest reality show on TV. If the Republican Party is convinced McCain is going to lose, nay, if it wants McCain to lose and if it wants McCain to take the religious right faction down into the bargain, how better to do it than to make McCain, Palin and the religious right a laughing stock? I’m not sure why I want to find logic in this Republican Party debacle. Maybe they all really are crazy as loons.

Monday, September 01, 2008

William Kristol Explains It All To You

It will come as no surprise when I say I am no fan of William Kristol. As a matter of fact, the sentence I use as a guide for the longest headline that will fit a Ratbang post is: William Kristol Is a Smug Devious Sack of Crap! That smug devious sack of crap is the founder and editor of The Weekly Standard. He personally wrote a manifesto in 1997 (Project for the New American Century Statement of Principles) giving the rationale for the United States invading and laying waste to any country with resources that the US desires, or that espouses politics different from those of the US. He is also a columnist for the New York Times. A Kristol op/ed piece, tantalizingly titled “A Star is Born?”, appears in today’s NYT. And who is this maybe/maybe-not star? Oh no! It isn’t! Oh yes it is Sarah Palin. About John McCain choosing Palin as his running mate, Kristol says: “But what was McCain’s alternative? To go quietly down to defeat, accepting a role as a bit player in The Barack Obama Story? McCain had to shake up the race, and once he was persuaded not to pick Joe Lieberman, which would have been one kind of gamble, he went all in with Sarah Palin.” Kristol then cites comments of detractors about Palin’s inexperience. He notes that Obama can’t in good conscience get exercised over anyone else’s inexperience. And Kristol snidely quotes Joe Klein that Palin has never appeared on “Meet the Press”. Then Kristol gets down to the meat and potatoes of his thesis: “Facing an electorate that wants change, McCain has given himself a fighting chance to win the election.” And, “if Palin exceeds expectations, and her selection ends up looking both bold and wise, McCain could win.” He quotes Noemie Emery who wrote, "(This) wipes out the image of McCain as the crotchety elder and brings back that of the fly-boy and gambler, which is much more appealing, and the genuine person.” Kristol says, “But of course McCain needs Palin to do well to prove he’s a shrewd and prescient gambler...I spent an afternoon with Palin a little over a year ago in Juneau, and have followed her career pretty closely ever since. I think she can pull it off. I’m not the only one. The day after the V.P. announcement, I spoke with an old friend, James Muller, chairman of the political science department at the University of Alaska, Anchorage. He said that Palin ‘has been underestimated over and over again. She took on the party and state establishments here in Alaska, and left them reeling. She’s a very good campaigner, a quick study and a fighter.’” Can she face down the Democrats, Joe Biden and the national media over the next couple of months? Kristol asks. “John McCain is betting she can. Perhaps, as he pondered his vice-presidential selection, he recalled the advice of Margaret Thatcher: ‘In politics if you want anything said, ask a man. If you want anything done, ask a woman.’” Well, there you have it. The whole ball of wax. No matter how much rhetoric is expended on Sarah Palin between now and November 4th, William Kristol, in his snotty sack of crap way has laid out all the plusses that are to be had re the Sarah Palin choice: She is a woman and she has impressed people in Alaska. And, you will note, Kristol never comes out and says Palin is a brilliant choice. He merely suggests that if Palin can pull an elephant out of a very small hat, she might be good for the McCain campaign. In a nutshell: Sara Palin is a woman. She has five children, the youngest of whom has Down Syndrome. She has two years experience as governor of Alaska, she lost her bid for Lieutenant Governor in 2002, before she was against the “Bridge to Nowhere” she was for it, and people in Alaska like her. Oh...and Doris Kearns Goodwin and David Gregory said on “Meet the Press” yesterday that Palin is an interesting and likeable woman...but she should be nowhere near the Presidency.