Sunday, August 31, 2008

To Those Who Criticise Palin...

... for her lack of experience, I just have one word for them: Cheney.

The left regard Cheney as the devil incarnate. But even they couldn't contest the fact that Cheney had huge experience of government and foreign affairs before he became Vice President.

I don't disqualify Obama from being President because he has no executive experience or real foreign policy experience. Neither did Clinton. Neither did Blair. Neither did Mrs T. Obama has had time to prove himself qualified to run for the Presidency. He passed that test with flying colours long ago, and that's why he won the Deomcratic nomination. Sarah Palin has yet to pass that test, and now has 68 days to do so. I don't know whether she will or not. But to write her off in the derogatory terms her opponents have done hitherto is ridiculous and worse.

A commenter in a previous thread, Conservative Cabbie, wrote this:

I'm genuinely curious. The posts you have made about Sarah Palin have been met with a lot of liberal bile (or should that be bilge). I don't remember seeing the left leave so many comments on your site before on any one subject, particularly an american one. Are you noticing this too or is it just me.

I think it is a relection that they are genuinly worried about what this means for Obama's chances. Because of her appeal to women, the working/middle class in the swing states and to the Rocky Mountain states, they are worried that she can genuinly affect this election.

I think he makes a fair point. Margaret Thatcher got this sort of abuse when she became Tory leader. In fact, she had it throughout her time in office too. No one could quite believe that
a housewife from Grantham could ascend to the leadership of the Conservative Party, let alone the country. Remind you of anyone?

UPDATE: Andrew Porter makes a similar point, quoting Norman Tebbit HERE.
UPDATE: Louise Bagshawe explodes some myths about Palin HERE.


Anonymous said...

One cannot criticise her because she's a woman? Give me a break.

Obama lacks executive experience, yes, and that has been pointed out time and again by those who do not wish his candidacy well. Now, people who do not wish the McCain/Palin ticket well are pointing out Palin's failings.

There is nothing wrong with either group of critics. Why is it somehow invalid or unfair to criticise McCain's choice? Why should free speech not reign?

And in response to Conservative Cabbie, I post plenty of comments on here.

Anonymous said...

I think the key thing here is that Palin is someone who polarises opinion. She may well shore up the republican base and there is a real need for that but she won't help mccain reach out across to democrats - there are democrats who would have supported the mccain of the past but he seems to be doing his best to repulse them though. In terms of her policies this is the type of republican vp pick that many democrats would love to go against

palin is going to draw a lot of attention and this will also make her debate with biden a key one. I don't get the sense that mccain and his team have really thought through this one through and really mapped out what is to come.

It seems a very reactive rather than proactive pick - an attempt to work to the dem agenda (bidens experience balancing out the ticket with some hilary supporters still vocally upset) and that concedes ground

He did need some youth within his campaign though so I don't see experience being a problem, he has that.

Anonymous said...

Iain, do you have a crush on her? [other readers, I know!]

We've seen nothing but "I love Palin" comments this weekend. There's still time to post that photo of her walking on water.

For me, I'd never heard of her and her past doesn't mean much when it comes to campaign skills, nor how she'd behave inside Washington.

Gordon Brown said...

"Once there were two brothers. One went away to sea; the other was elected vice president. And nothing was heard of either of them again."

John Adams, the first vice president, described it as "the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived or his imagination conceived."

It just gives journalists something to write about, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

To be fair the Veep has became a lot more important over the past fifty years as its been properly integrated into the Executive Branch.

And Iain, I thought you'd have raised the BBC's rather questionable coverage. Whereas the Biden pick got wall-to-wall coverage on their website and a couple of posts on Webb's blog...the Palin pick has only today got a couple of paragraphs tacked onto a post about New Orleans.

Andrew Ian Dodge said...

Just watch her acceptance speech here... I think she will do fine in the debates and on the stump. Palin is the kick up the arse the McCain campaign needed.

I touted her on my blog a while ago and am glad I did.

PS: I wonder if some of the vile stuff said about her by the left would be said about a woman if she were not Republican.

Rupert said...

It is good to see Tories lining up in support of Palin. It makes pretty clear just how skin-deep the Cameron 'revolution' has been.
Let's remind ourselves on some of what Palin stands for:
* Palin opposes abortion even in the case of rape or incest. She believes, that is to say, in (for example) the right of a father who rapes his under-age daughter to ensure that his daughter bears his grandchild.
* She supported right-wing extremist Pat Buchanan for president in 2000.
* Palin doesn't believe in evolution, and thinks creationism should be taught in state schools.
* She's doesn't think humans are the cause of the climate chaos that is currently melting the Arctic and training another hurricane on New Orleans.
* She's solidly in line with John McCain's "Big Oil first" energy policy: She's pushed hard for more oil drilling and says renewables won't be ready for years. ...She also sued the Bush administration for listing polar bears as an endangered species—she was worried it would interfere with more oil drilling in Alaska.
It's good to know that many of Britain's Tories are happy signing up to support such a person. It's good to know where they stand.

Anonymous said...


As a result of this decision his campaign is effectively over.


Get over it.

PhilC said...

I think the 'left' are leaving so many posts because you keep writing billet-doux to the lady from Alaska and don't seem to understand that someone with her views is simply an anathema to many people. (What do you think of her stance on same-sex marriages or teaching creationism in schools for instance?).
Her defenders are using her gender to try and deflect criticism - "if you have a pop at her it's because you're sexist".
I'm not taking any lessons on gender equality from the right.
This from the Huffington Post sums it up: "Sarah Palin is to the movement for women's equality what Clarence Thomas is to civil rights. She's an extremist and an enemy to the cause that has been fought on her behalf."

Anonymous said...

The more I see and hear of this women the more I hate everything she stands for. (Then again I am a veggie - and yes you can be a veggie and not a foaming at the mouth leftie!) But the sitting on a dead bear, the NRA love, the fundamentalist bible bashing anti abortion stance, well any respect & support I had for McCain has vanished.

ParanoidMan is right. Palin will polarise people. I am guessing that many of the women who supported Clinton and may have considered McCain will probably go back to Obama. McCain has possibly scared the centre ground people back to Obama.

That said it is the US and her dreadful reactionary politics will go down well with many people - as depressing a thought as that is.

Anonymous said...

Do not underestimate Sarah Palin.You political experts and commentators see her as just a rookie.

The rest of us see her as a woman who has made the grade against all the odds.

Anonymous said...


My first day commenting on your blog and you honour me with a post, wow!

Hi Stuart, never said you didn't. You are right, it is perfectly legitimate to question a relatively new arrival on the world political scene. It is not so legitimate to throw unproven rumours around as truth as some have done today and, as to be fair, a lot of righties did about Obama when he looked to become the nominee. The reason the right did this was that they were scared of what he represented electorally, and I was only suggesting that this was the reason for the dramatic response of liberals on the blog today.

Anonymous said...

iain mate consider this.joe biden was met with universal support including from republican senators, arlen specter, chuck hagel, and dick lugar as a potential president. plenty of conservatives including frum, ponnuru, krauthammer. senior republicans in alaska (pop 600,000) have all slated her. she is being investigated for firing a state official in a personal matter regarding her attempt to have her ex-brother in law fired and was busted lying about it. obama chose biden to govern. mccain chose palin to win an election. charlie black senior mccain strategist said she will learn foreign policy at the "foot of the master" in the nyt. mccain met her once before last week and while he wanted to pick lieberman he caved in to the evangelical right. he will win the news cycle but lose the election. when you say the left is out of line on women or minorities who are republican you are right. but what about the rights treatment of democrats who are veterans or evangelicals and the hypocrisy they use to destroy them.and mate there is nothing conservative about the republicans anymore. sometimes a party needs to be put out of its misery like labour or the democrats in the 80s. this republican party right now is crazy and simply not serious, not all of this criticism is from the left.

Ross said...

"* She supported right-wing extremist Pat Buchanan for president in 2000."

Firstly that is a lie and has already been debunked, as mayor she greeted him when he held an event in her town one night.

Secondly Obama really does have connections with extremists, including two decades with the racist demagoge Jeremiah Wright and many years with the unrepentent terrorist William Ayers.

Anonymous said...

Oh dear ! the right are upset that John McCain has made a big boo-boo !

HaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHaHa !!

Anonymous said...

Operation BlackPrez is about to come to fruition - Yay !!

Anonymous said...

Oh dear Rupert:

"Palin opposes abortion even in the case of rape or incest. She believes, that is to say, in (for example) the right of a father who rapes his under-age daughter to ensure that his daughter bears his grandchild."

Palin believes that life starts at conception. That is what she believes like all pro-lifers. I think it is a perfectly legitimate value to have. And if you believe this, it MUST be wrong to abort a life at any stage and for any reason because that foetus is alive.

You may believe that life starts at a later time and thats Ok, but don't try to villify someone because their values differ.

Anonymous said...

Obama does have some executive experience. Since last year he has been running an organisation of over 500 people with a budget of well over $100 million dollars. And it beat the team which had a former First Lady, President and their combined executive experience.

Anonymous said...

By Buchanan's own admission on MSNBC Palin and her husband were representatives of his at a Florida fundraiser.

Iain Dale said...

Rupert, have a look at this.

He takes the view that at least her position is both philosophically and morally consistent.

Your view on this and mine, I suspect, may be similar. But we're probably both philosophically inconsistent. She is against ALL abortion.

I would have limits, but of course everyone disagrees on where to place those limits. So my moral position is inconsistent. I fully admit it. I guess it's caled pragmatism.

Anonymous said...

What Rupert said worries me the most. Palin is toxic to Tory parties aims both philosophically IMO and certainly electorally. I accept it's highly unlikely to have an impact on the British scene but were Labour and the Liberals to use McCain/Palin against the Tories it would be a hammer blow. But what you can bet is that the columnists everywhere will be taking notes of prominent Tory members and right wing commentators who profess their support for Palin and will then have plenty of ammunition to smear their perceived skin deep transformation of the Tory party under Cameron. It seems clear to me that the 20% poll leads are soft and there is still plenty of time before a general election for the numbers to go South.

Mostly Ordinary said...

Clam down Iain you're turning into a fanboy. Hold you're fire until she says something.

Anonymous said...

Iain - for what it's worth, I've always thought John McCain was not to be underestimated; his choice of running mate reinforces that view. Whether he goes on to win or not, this was an incredibly imaginative and bold move. And I have the feeling that Palin will do rather better than Geraldine Ferraro did in 1984.

Anonymous said...


How can you love someone who's so socially illiberal?

Any Liberal (in the true 19th Century meaning of the word) would throw up in disgust at her condescending beliefs.

And no, sorry Iain, it does not remind me of anyone. I have just been reminded and will remind the rest of you; Lady T went to Oxford. And was a Chemist.
Somehow that’s more credible than a beauty pageant bimbo from Alaska.

Iain Dale said...

Tom, at last some sanity after a day of insanity on this blog!

Anonymous said...

Clinton had *years of executive experience as Governor of Arkansas.
Obama has *no foreign policy 'experience' at all. Does that matter? I doubt it. That's what you have advisors for. It's hard to have real executive experience AND foreign policy 'experience' - and being a senator hardly counts as that.
This election is certainly an odd one. Neither Obama nor Palin has the 'experience' for the job. Then again, most people in Britain in 1980 - or at least the BBC - wanted Jimmy Carter to win...
The mistake comes from thinking politics should be in the hands of a professional, hereditary class. Lord Acton was right.
There really should be term limits on pols. The US Senate is full of octogenarians.

Brian K.

Anonymous said...

From Jonathan Adler at The Corner:

One charge that's rapidly making the rounds among Palin critics is that she's a supporter of creationism and wants it taught in public schools. From what I've been able to find, however, this is not quite true. As detailed here, Gov. Palin stated in a 2006 gubernatorial debate that she has no objection to "teaching both" evolution and creation. After the debate, however, she clarified that she did not think the state should require the teaching of creationism or other anti-evolution theories alongside evolution in public schools. “I don’t think there should be a prohibition against debate if it comes up in class. It doesn’t have to be part of the curriculum," she said. Beyond other statements reaffirming her belief in God, I have seen nothing that would indicate she supports making creationism part of school science curricula. (And, just in case anyone forgets my views on the subject, that's a good thing, because there's nothing scientific about creationism or "intelligent design").

Perhaps not the fundamentalist some would have us believe.

PhilC said...

Interesting point, Tom, comparing Palin with Ferraro (the Democrat was a more qualified candidate I would argue).
Why will Palin fare better?

strapworld said...

The left/ liberals and the pro-abortionists are always the same. They will throw bile and accusations galore against her!

The problem for that lot of malcontents is that they are going to lose BIG TIME!

This was one incredible gamble by McCain and one that will pay off!

Obama is a wordsmith. I think of Blair every time he opens his mouth and ealise he is just another salesman offering medicine that just will not work!

I thought the West saw these people off?

I believe that McCain will win alongside Palin.

BUT...why are we, with no say whatsoever, worrying about how, why and what our American cousins will vote?

The BBC have already decided that Obama is going to win. That alone is good reason for evry free thinking UK resident to support McCain!

Anonymous said...

interesting Alaskan perspective..

Anonymous said...

Let me first declare that I am no liberal. I have voted Conservative since 1979. Even now living in Islington, I vote Conservative, my wife and son do the same. Perhaps we are in the minority here!

Iain, you know Palin is no Margaret Thatcher. The only comparison is both are women. Maggie was not a good education secretary, but that was in Heath's government. Bad chemistry between the two, and she had to work in the atmosphere of comprehensive education system.

A grocer's daughter, she went to Oxford university, worked in Dorothy Hodgkins's lab there, studied and practiced law there after. No comparison here with Palin in terms of educational background.

The American president is the leader of the free world. My apprehension if you like is , is Palin of president material, If McCain keels over in the office? I was working in US when Nixon announced the appointment of Gerald Ford as the VP when Nixon's running mate VP resigned. Nixon said at that time that a VP should have all the qualities one expected from a president. How true it became. Whatever was his machinations in Watergate saga, Nixon was a good president and achieved so much internationally. All Gerald Ford had to do was to pick up where he left with Kissinger. Gerald Ford was a majority leader in the Senate and was no novice. May be Palin would be better in 10 years time. But I feel not at this time. .

I have had similar apprehension about Obama, but after Biden in the ticket that was resolved.

Anonymous said...

I wish people would stop making the Obama-Blair comparison because Blair won 3 general elections and we're talking about a country where identity politics is seemingly paramount. It's far more of a compliment than criticism.

Anonymous said...

Being pro-life and pro-creationist appeals to a huge swathe of U.S. voters. The left will just have to accept this.

PhilC said...

re Conservative Cabbie quoting Jonathan Adler.
Couple of reports support your interpretation on Palin and creationism.
Palin said: "Teach both [creationism and evolution]. You know, don't be afraid of information" but then 'clarified' saying only that if the issue came up then debate it but don't put it on the curriculum.
I guess she 'mispoke' as they say.
Perhaps she'll clarify in the VP debate.
In those debates, if Biden is as verbose as usual (and lapses into being patronising) she could land a few blows. The ordinary hockey mum schtick can work as long as she doesn't get pinned down on policy.

Anonymous said...

No, iain, liberals are not criticising her because they fear her, they're doing so because she's just not qualified. Your cheney point is bizarre - being qualified is not a sufficient criterion, granted, but being UNqualified is. McCain's job was to choose someone who could take over on day one as president, not a trainee, and he has flunked that for electoral reasons. That's just wrong and he deserves to lose the election for it. I think this is a serious turninbg point. Imagine if Mccain had just kept hammering the "he's not ready" line, for 10 weeks? Now he can't use it. insane.

Anonymous said...

I think normally VP doesn't make much difference to the race. I think Biden will be almost unmentioned during this race. But McCain's choice is both bold and desperate. It shows how he is having serious problems uniting the GOP. Just as Clinton motivates the GOP base, Palin motivates the Democrats. She is a perfect boiler plate GOP to campaign against for them. She directly contradicts, in the most blunt fashion, and corrects the mistaken understanding by those independents and right leaning Democrats who said they'd support McCain based on his perceived pro-choice stance.

Anonymous said...

@Conservative Cabbie. Welcome aboard, and congrats on getting a name-check by the Dalester himself. We all crave his attention and endorsement.

I think that you and I probably agree. Criticising both Obama and Palin is perfectly legitimate - in fact, it's to be encouraged, especially by Americans who are responsible for choosing between them.

We will all get ourselves into a whole heap of trouble if we start calling critics of Obama racists and critics of Palin sexist.

Anonymous said...

Hurrah! Something to check the idiots who have fallen for the Messianic bilge of the Obama campaign. One should be all for it, because even if Obama is the best thing since sliced bread, his arrogance and the disgusting worship-culture of his supporters should be enough to disqualify him from all intelligent people's support.

Anonymous said...

Iain- as I said in a previous post- the problem is not necessarily her experience per se, but it is:

a) The hypocrisy of the McCain team with there 'is he ready to lead' ads, who then chose someone with only 18 months governing one of the redist of the red states and one that is nowhere near a comparable state to the US as a whole

and most importantly

b) That McCain at the RNC convention is using the slogan 'country first'. This is not what he has done- he has made a short term gamble in order to try and pick up the few women dumb enough to think that just because she lacks a penis she will back the same agenda as Hilary.

McCain at 74 has placed winning the election over the need of the country to have someone fit for the job if he dies in office- which considering hes had cancerous tumors removed off his face 5 times already, and would be 82 at the end of a two terms at the most stressful job in the world is hardly beyond the bounds of possibility.

That is why she is criticized, not her gender, nor, specifically, her lack of experience.

Paul said...

For the record Bill Clinton had bags of executive experience before becoming president (two stints as Governor of Arkansas - 11 years in total, and before that 2 years Attorney General of Arkansas).

Also for the record, Sarah Palin has more executive experience than Barack Obama, Joe Biden and John McCain combined - who between them have a grand total of none at all. Granted that Palin has no foreign policy experience - but she doesn't need any: McCain's got heaps of experience in that area.

And as for the "heartbeat from the presidency" thing - well Palin is at least as well qualified for the top job as Obama.

Anonymous said...

@Stuart. Thanks for your kind words.

I like her a lot but absolutely acknowledge that she has to go through a process of public vetting like Obama had too for nigh on 18 months.

And you're right, sexism and racism has no place in this debate.

Anonymous said...

I agree 100% with Tobias. And the big unknown in this election is the reaction of non white women. They don't have the pro-choice, feminist agenda of Clintonistas. Loads are Catholic, evangelical and family orientated. And for many of us, we see our gender as a bigger factor in how far we progress career wise than our racial origins.
If the Democrats wish to win this, they should find out what makes loads of Americans tick. It's not about New York and San Francisco, it's about the loads of suburbs all around America - that's where elections are won.

Anonymous said...

Apart from 5 children (or is it 4 +1?) (all with silly names) and the vile objection to a womans right to chose not to bring unwanted children into the world and being dodgy on creationism (just watched a tape of Dawkins part 3 at a friends house, not having telly myself) Mrs Palin seems very sound. If she can debate, and keep her answers short and to the point, she should knock Biden the waffle pants off his Kinnockian perch!

(Gill in S/Times brilliant on Denver)

Anonymous said...

The Obamaniacs are in a rare old state because they realise that McCain has chosen the one person who could bolster his chances of being elected.

The "left" cannot believe what McCain has done. He was not supposed to act like this. They wanted him to be the old duffer who sided with Bush for 95% of the time, to choose someone in his image. Not this, this is against their hopes for Obama. Now they've got the problem of hating McCain but not wanting to look sexist.

The poor old "left" have got into a muddle. Obama was not supposed to be challenged. He was supposed to be upagainst a man with age against him.

Iain, I understood why your comments section is over flowing with "left"s feeling so angry about Palin. She is the candidate they want to hate but cannot explicitly becuase it would be aganst their feminist feelings. McCain has won a lot in the game here - the race is wide open and he is ahead.

You can hear the "left" wondering what went wrong. Poor McCain, how dare he not act the way the "left" wanted! Poor Obamaniacs, what are they going to do now?

Anonymous said...

Fact is, no black man has ever had to take career breaks to have babies. And anyone raising 5 kids and running a state is a role model to anyone. Little girls in Nigeria and elsewhere would be very inspired if she actually became VP. And the suggestion her baby isn't hers but her daughter's is beneath contempt. And people calling her bimbo although she's a state governor are just typical of what women have to put up with when they dare to be ambitious. From experience, there's no one more sexist than a left-wing male. Democrats, having been historically the racist party, are now the sexist party. What a circus.

Anonymous said...

The issue has never been about experience - it's about judgement.
Picking someone whom you've met once as your VP isn't evidence of stellar judgement.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 9:10

"She directly contradicts, in the most blunt fashion, and corrects the mistaken understanding by those independents and right leaning Democrats who said they'd support McCain based on his perceived pro-choice stance."

Sorry dude but you should really read up on your subject before you touch the keyboard - John McCain is pro-life.

Yak40 said...

This from the Huffington Post sums it up:

Huffpo ? Only lefties read that, you'd hardly expect anything positive from that site about anything McCain did.

Anonymous said...

"It's good to know that many of Britain's Tories are happy signing up to support such a person. It's good to know where they stand."

I'm glad you are 'pleased' Rupert - you must be one of the 26% of people in this country who just cannot see that Labour are now officially 'the nasty party'. Their socialist experiment has been found more than wanting - thrusting people back into social deprivation in every way and turning harmony into chaos and adversity. Are you just a bigoted believer, or are you unintelligent?

What many of us don't support, Tory or not, is a racist, black man with terrorist links and dubious economic policies that will have very adverse affects on the UK, becoming president of the US. That you and your ilk do support such a person,(as well as Labour) only adds to the downfall that is most definitely coming your way - and many of us, Tory or not, hope it is for good. Socialism has proved itself to be nothing but a force for evil.

As far as Sarah Palin is concerned we are looking at her credentials fairly - you are just being a bigot.

PS MMGW is totally unproven and is not the source of hurricanes. Polar bears are only endangered if sea ice is declining, and at the moment it is not. Accoring to NASA, Arctic sea ice is greater this year than last.

Alaska is a key source of energy for humans, and with Russia rattling the sabre again is important for the survival of democracy as you 'know'it.

Anonymous said...

"I'm not taking any lessons on gender equality from the right."

Of course not Phil, because socialists don't believe in equality. Men must be put in their place, and discrimination against them is perfectly OK - that's positive.

Muslim women? They just have to accept that the Koran says they are second class. Right wing women? Traitors to the cause. Just like you call right wing black people 'Uncle Toms'.

Socialist only use equality to cover up their hypocritical tracks. And we certainly cannot teach lefties anything about that!!

Anonymous said...

What this has done is to change the political story away from Obam's anointment to the plucky fightback. In that respect it is very much like the UK party conferences in 2007. The MSM would have had us believe that Labour truly deserved another 5 years to suck at the public teat. A combination of DC's wonderful conference, the Conservatives uniting for the first time (and admitedly Gordon dithering) changed the political landscape.
It's also worth remembering that the USA Heartlands do have different values to the UK so what may seem wierd or extreme to a European perspective may be just what is needed for the Republicans right now

Unknown said...

With McCain well advanced in years she may well be the first femail president. Good luck to her!
But, let's hope she's up to the job it all seems a bit of a gamble to me.

Anonymous said...

Iain, you've gone quite mad over this Sarah Palin thing.

You're as seduced by her photogenity as McCain is. You've been Limbaugh'ed.

She's such an unknown quantity it's frightening. All we know is that's she's got limited experiance, she ticks all the right wing boxes, and that she could very possibly be President in six months when John McCain quietly expires in his sleep.

It's not funny.

Anonymous said...

Drew Belobaba - I said "perceived pro-choice" stance.

The polls show that many McCain leaning independents and right leaning Democrats DO BELIEVE he is pro-choice even though he isn't.

Anonymous said...

"No comparison here with Palin in terms of educational background."

So basically, you're saying Obama is qualified to be President of the United States because he was President of the Harvard Law Review?

Anonymous said...

Gordon Brown had 10 years of government experience, does that make him a good PM?

Chris Paul said...

Oh come on Iain. This is a Cecil Parkinson/Nadine Dorries ticket as of five year ago before Dorries had "proved herself". Palin isn't even a competent Governor and though the 80% early approval ratings are oft quoted she has matched that and more on the question of whether she is lying in office on Trooper gate.

A comment at the MagicStatistics blog when they backed her for VP two days before she announced her pregnancy included this:

Oh yeah, the Democrats love her! I wonder why?
-Palin promised to cut the budget, but the budget grew $350 million.
-Palin introduced a $700 million tax hike, but signed a $1.5 billion tax hike.

This is NOT a good choice. Incompetent as well as inexperienced. Vindictive/corrupt when she got power by tackling others for same.

And McCain isn't a good choice either. Though he would probably sack her immediately if he were to win. And bring in some sinister old warmongering oil or missiles fuck.

Anonymous said...

It seems to be standard practice for the party in government to criticise the party in opposition because they have no experience. Labour keep using it against Cameron (never mentioning BLiar's lack of experience when he became PM of course) but if you followed that principle then we would never have a change of government.

Anonymous said...

Its clear she ticks a lot of boxes and that is why the lefty libs are so worried. At first glance she's an excellent candidate for an election but I would be seriously worried if she became president which, with McCain's age, is a serious possibility.

Maggie was not president of a global superpower but the PM of a third rate power with delusions of grandeur.

In any case Obama has the only policy worth voting for, to make the US independent of Arab (and by extension Russian) oil within 10 years. The Arabs can then wallow in their oil!!! The Repubs cannot do that because they are in the pockets of the Oil lobby, as is the lovely Sarah.

Squadron Leader said...

...What is this?


Cheney is terrible because he's a foul man with foul ideas. Palin is inexperienced because she hasn't had any experience.

I don't see how those two preclude each other, or even how they are really relevant.

Anonymous said...

@ljuk at 12.48am. I think the point is that experience alone is not the thing (by the end, Hitler had lots of experience of governing), but experience allows us to make a judgement. It gives us a track record.

I think in the case of Gordon Brown lots of people could see he would be not very good, and most people would now agree with that.

Perhaps our two warring sides could agree that we just don't with Palin. She may be good. She may be less than good. We don't know. We have too little on which to judge her.

Squadron Leader said...

Godwin's Law on the above.

Anonymous said...

Sarah Palin has more executive experience than Obama and Biden combined. She exposes Obama as an empty windbag, whose running mate is best known for having bizarrely copied a speech from the mother-of-all-windbags, Neil Kinnock.

As a vegetarian, I don't think I would feel comfortable visiting her house. Then again, she hasn't invited me. And until there is a vegetarian candidate, it will not be an election issue.

Who makes the greater contribution to women's equality?
(a) A wealthy, well-connected lefty trying to accede to her husband's old job?
(b) An ordinary woman, who believes in every baby's right to live; whose husband has not been unfaithful to her; who has had to overcome corruption in her own party to get to where she is, and has got to where she is through her own hard work?

The man-hating, bra-burning, nutters who supported Hillary won't support Sarah Palin. Normal people will.

Rush-is-Right said...

Picking someone whom you've met once as your VP isn't evidence of stellar judgement.

Well I haven't met her even that often. But I like her a lot!

Anonymous said...

Do your leftist commentators agree with Biden's assertion that “all Serbs should be placed in Nazi-style concentration camps”?

Rupert said...

IN answer to one of my critics here: if you bothered to find out anything about me before criticising me, you would find that I am not a Labour-supporter; I am a Green Party politician.
IN answer to Iain: a _foolish_ consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds. No-one has been able to answer my central point on the abortion question: that Palin believes abortion is always wrong... Which equates to saying that Palin believes that rapists and incestuous predators have the right to see their babies sired, as soon as they succeed in forcing conception.

Anonymous said...

With 143 days work in the senate, Obama is far from qualified to be president.

Palin has much more experience, but still not really enough for the presidency.

That's not so important though - she isn't going to be president unless something happens to McCain. In that unlikely event, she will have gained experience through her role as VP.

From day 1 Obama will be up and running as a misguided novice in charge of the most powerful country on Earth. Heaven help us!

Anonymous said...

rupert said...I am a GREEN PARTY member.

Nuff said then, really!

It makes his contributions meaningless

Guthrum said...

This is what I fail to understand- the feeling that politicians are somehow ubermensch who understand everything, that us ordinary mortals cannot.

At the end of the day they are representatives of the people to act as a counterbalance to the civil servants, lawyers and military who do not move whichever administration is in power. In which case give me an honest man with little experiance, than a corrupt one who knows how to work the system.

Anonymous said...

Palin 'misspoke' when she made her maiden speech as VP nominee about a controversial bridge project in her home state Alaska so says the Telegraph. This adding to the 'Trooper Gate'.

All I can say is coming weeks should be interesting when more comes out of Palin's closet! I thank fellow elderly gentleman McCain for providing an exciting blogging time for us!!

Catosays said...

It's not often I agree with Tom Harris but his comments were spot on.

We are in danger here of being too introspective, looking at the choice from our very insular point of view and forgetting that Americans see things in a very different light.

Personally, I think she's an excellent choice and I wish her well.

Catosays said...

It's not often I agree with Tom Harris but his comments were spot on.

We are in danger here of being too introspective, looking at the choice from our very insular point of view and forgetting that Americans see things in a very different light.

Personally, I think she's an excellent choice and I wish her well.

Anonymous said...

In 2000 the right deliberately misrepresented Al Gore. In 2004 the did the same to John Kerry. And in fact every Democratic candidate that I can remember. Fair enough that's politics.

As soon as someone does it to a republican the dummy's out the pram. That tends to sum up the right as far as I'm concerned.

As for Palin she is a big gamble for Mccain but one he had to take because he is losing this election. Don't belive me then look at the State polls. He has to shore up the close states that Bush one in 2004 because they are swinging to Obama.

Mccain has to hope that it doesn't smack of desperation and you can already see it in some of the republican commentators. They are currently trying to claim she has experience of foreign affairs because Alaska is next to Russia!!!!

Anonymous said...

Sorry that should have been won not one.

Anonymous said...

I read a lot of blogs and I have noticed that the left wing blogs and commenters have become much more strident over the last year.

It used to be that with some socialists, you could have a debate, There are fewer now.

Many, many left wing comments in blogs are of the "F-off" variety. A few wild assertions are made and when these are shown to be just rubbish, the tiresome "F-off" routine begins.

And it's not just against centre/liberal/right wing posters.

There was a reasoned, thoughtful piece on Labour Home questioning Brown's mental state. A Labour PPC left the comment "utter rubbish". When it was pointed out that this was hardly a constructive argument, he became very aggressive and rude. And this was to his own party members!

Some of the comments on your post by Palin haters verge on the insane, full of wild accusations and weird logic.

It seems to me that to be a socialist a la Toynbee you have to indulge in such doublethink that it is actually not possible to have firm principles such as Palin seems to have. (She's a politician, so we may never know what they really are!).

Well, you may disagree with Palin's views, but you have to recognise that you show yourself for what you truly are with some of the hysterical, illogical and sometimes just plain untrue comments posted here

Anonymous said...

An American friend of mine ( an independent) sent me this link. Says that it is travelling fast! Surely they do it differently over there. It may be coming here in 2010 elections.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and a special one for Rupert. Man made global warming is "training" a hurricane on New Orleans.

Do you really beleive that?

How, exactly, does that happen?

If you set out here the mechanics of exactly how that works, then I'm sure a few readers of a scientific bent will be interested to see the science behind that assertion.

Anonymous said...

Whilst reserving judgement for the time being on Sarah Palin (having shot from the hip commenting on blogs on Friday like everyone else), I agree with Norman and others above that the supposed likeness with Mrs T is extremely weak. She had had lots of exec experience as a Cabinet member for over 3 years (and Junior Minister way back as well as party spokesman experience for the year immediately before she became leader). Cabinet business includes discussions on foreign policy. She also had several years as Leader of the Opposition to learn more about foreign policy before she was ever going to become PM. As has been stated, she was highly educated, concentrating on lab work as a chemist at the age that Sarah Palin was winning beauty contests. As an MP since 1959, she was a political insider. In her early career she was conformist, not a challenger to the status quo - her later radicalism came from being intellectually convinced. Even in family matters, she got it over quickly with one pregnancy - not 5 with an age span of around 20 years.

So basically the similarity comes down to her being a right of centre woman competing for the highest office (with a husband in the oil industry LOL). Oh - and Iain Dale likes her. This is just sexism (or a way of getting your traffic up).

But perhaps she is becoming a gay icon? I don't think Mrs T was ever that either.

Anonymous said...


You will find that I did answer your question about abortion at 8:11 pm yesterday.

Sarah Palin along with other pro-lifers believe that life begins at conception, not at some arbitrary time during pregnancy. If you believe in life at conception, then there is no circumstance in which it acceptable to exterminate that life except to save the life of the mother.

Or you saying that if that child was alive at 1 years old and it was then discovered to be the result of incestuous rape, it would be ok to kill the child. I hope you're not suggesting that, and that is what a pro-lifer feels about a life in the womb.

scott redding said...

The parallels with Spiro Agnew are interesting, i.e. appointing a state governor as VP who is currently under an ethics investigation.

As mayor, she left a town of 8000 people with a long-term debt of $20 million.

As far as journalists can tell, she's been outside of North America twice (a July 2007 trip to visit Alaskan National Guard members in Kuwait, and to visit injured soldiers in Germany; she's also visited Ireland). With regard to foreign policy, McCain has hired a trainee. Should a 72-year old cancer survivor hire a trainee as VP ... when 3 of the last 12 Presidents have resigned from, or died in, office?

Andrew Halco ran against Palin for governor. He said yesterday that McCain's staff have just arrived in Wasilla to vet Palin. They have have eight rooms reserved at a Wasilla hotel. On Saturday, a Democrat tasked with opposition research contacted the Huffington Post. As of the weekend, the McCain campaign had not gone through old newspaper articles from Palin's hometown newspaper.

How did the Democrat know? The paper's archives are not online. And when he went to research past content, he was told he was the first to inquire.

paranoidman nailed it pretty early on.

Among undecided voters, Palin made only 6 percent more likely to vote for McCain; and it made 31 percent less likely to vote for him. 49 percent said it would have no impact, and 15 percent remained unsure.

Among undecideds, 59 percent said Palin was unready to be president. Only 6 percent said she was.

Overall, 69 percent view her as conservative (37 percent as very conservative), and only 13 percent see her as moderate.

Johnny Norfolk said...

I think she is great. She says what she thinks and is not swayed by the left.

Thats why they hate her.

Anonymous said...

It is unfortunate the just days after Iain wrote about using racism to shame Americans to vote for him that he then uses the sexism argument to oppose criticism of Palin. Thatcher did receive a lot of criticism and that was part of her training because this is premier league politics. I think the deluge of info about Palin is so surprising because she is a complete unknown on the US and world stage. What else would you expect? Had McCain picked someone with a larger national presence there would be fewer skeletons in the closet to reveal because they would have already received a degree of scrutiny. Palin is only now learning what it means to be on the national and international stage and it is a necessary part of her training.

Anonymous said...

Ian, this vile woman has personally clubbed to death baby seals, slaughtered an innumerable number of moose for burger meat; she kills and stuffs innocent crabs going about their business, owns enough guns to supply the Taliban for a decade, hurls vile abuse at homosexuals like Bernard Manning with tourettes, and shoots her own brother in law up the ass with a bazooka.

Do you honestly believe this woman should be eligible for the VP post?

Anonymous said...

To concerned of wandsworth at 1.23pm:

You've just described Dick Cheney through and through. (Aside from the homophobia; but everyone knows Cheney only hates male homosexuals!)

Anonymous said...

concerned of wandsworth said...
"Do you honestly believe this woman should be eligible for the VP post?"

She sounds just right for the post. We could do with someone like her for PM. More of a man than Brown or Cameron.

Anonymous said...

It seems that Obama fans are too shy to defend Biden. No takers?

Anonymous said...

It would seem Alaskans have a bit more common sense than you rabid right wingers so easily seduced by a piece of *ss on here.

"Most people would acknowledge that, regardless of her charm and good intentions, Palin is not ready for the top job. McCain seems to have put his political interests ahead of the nation’s when he created the possibility that she might fill it."

And that's the Fairbanks Daily News!!!

Spot on.

Anonymous said...

Why "rabid right wingers", it's interesting how the left need to resort to insults to try and get their point across.

Ok, lets sort this out. How would you define "ready for the top job?"I'm assuming you believe that Obama is "ready". In what way is he ready?

Obama, short of foreign policy experience, chose Joe Biden as his running mate, a man who proposes splitting up Iraq into three seperate enclaves. How is that choice "in the best interests of the country?"

Name for me one thing Obama has achieved as a politician? Unlike Palin, the answer you are looking for is nothing, not even his close supporters when questioned can identify a single thing he has achieved and nor will you be able too. How's about that for "ready to run the country?"

Anonymous said...

Not even going to try and defend Obama on experiance. He's run an excellent campaign and I trust his judgement on the decisions he's made.

His focus is on the two things that I care about. The economy and healthcare. And ending a war we can't afford and not starting new ones we morally cannot justify.

McCain concerns me so greatly - his judgement over so many big issues, especially foreign policy and the economy, are so questionable. One he admittedly knows nothing about, the other he's taking a position more hawkish than the current incumbent and also risking starting fights with Russia.

More than anything though, he's shown his decision making process is flawed. He's met her once. He wanted to appoint Lieberman until the GOP threatened a floor fight at the Convention. This is for the VP job when he's a 72 year old cancer survivor! What's he going to do for Supreme Court judges, Cabinet appointments etc??

Apologies for the insults. Not really meant. But simultaneously shocked and amused the way some people on here have gone overboard on SP when basically all they've got to go on is that she's hot.

Anonymous said...

andy c.

What you neglected to mention was that most in the comments page disagreed with the editorial line of this rag. It seems that this publication has vested interests in the good ole' boy network that Palin fought against. An example comment is below.

"Yeah News-Miner....Sarah Palin beat out your boy Frank Murkowski to become Governor. Got rid of his damn airplane too.
And yes...she's shaken up the "old boy" network down in Juneau.
And furthermore, she's put her own stamp on the proposed natural gas pipeline regardless of how anyone, including you feel about it.
Choke on all of that, and much more if you will."

Try another tack. I'm sure you will.

Anonymous said...

Andy C

You like Obama because of what he stands for and represents. That's fine.

I like Palin because of what she represents. She is a woman committed to her values, who doesn't believe in government controlling peoples lives and who isn't a career politician from Harvard.

You say McCain's judgement is flawed, I say inspired. Only time will tell.

Anonymous said...

The Obama fans are strangely quiet about Senator Joe Biden. So do they agree with the Senator that "Serbs are illiterate degenerates, baby killers, butchers and rapists” (Larry King Live, CNN) who "should be placed in Nazi-style concentration camps" (US Senate)? Just asking.

Anonymous said...

CC - thankyou, a genuinely fair and nice exchange (and I apologise for the contentious remarks, hope taken as intended, a bit of fun).

Anonymous said...

"The left regard Cheney as the devil incarnate. But even they couldn't contest the fact that Cheney had huge experience of government and foreign affairs before he became Vice President."

Err quite.And look where all that 'experience' got him and the US.Unless that was your point?

Anonymous said...

The NY Times carries the news that Palin's unmarried daughter is pregnant and will marry the father.

Anonymous said...

Andy C

Of course taken as intended. Roll on Nov 4, I'm sure there'll be many more "fair and nice exchanges" before and after.


Anonymous said...

The NY Times carries the news that Palin's unmarried daughter is pregnant and will marry the father.

Let us hope this piece of very personal news doesn't become a political football for either left or right. Some things are beyond politics.

Anonymous said...

Ooh Baby Baby !!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

"The NY Times carries the news that Palin's unmarried daughter is pregnant and will marry the father."

All this means is lose a few, win a few. Nothing major.

Anonymous said...

good to see that someone so in tune with Iain 'blasphemer' Dale's views on homosexuality and religion is now getting is full, undying and unalloyed support.

And Nadine would be so proud of Palin junior...

Anonymous said...

"Let us hope this piece of very personal news doesn't become a political football for either left or right. Some things are beyond politics."

and I suppose you believe in santa claus and the tooth fairy as well ?

dream on, kids, dream on...

Anonymous said...

Pregnant again ?

You would have thought she'd learnt she was pushing her luck the last time...

Anonymous said...

"The NY Times carries the news that Palin's unmarried daughter is pregnant and will marry the father."

You'd have to have a heart of stone not to laugh...

Anonymous said...

Obama is literally a baby killer:

Obama: Devoutly pro-choice. Voted against a bill in the Illinois state senate that would have required doctors to save the lives of babies who survived abortion procedures. The implication of this position is that babies born prematurely during abortions would be left alone, unnourished and unmedicated, until they died.

More from a funny article :

Anonymous said...

Sorry, proper link here

Anonymous said...

Sarah Palin? Victoria Gillick in glasses (and a tad prettier).

Anonymous said...

Perhaps Sarah will desist from pushing abstinece only sex education and lecturing other people about their childrens morality

Will you support funding for abstinence-until-marriage education instead of for explicit sex-education programs, school-based clinics, and the distribution of contraceptives in schools?

SP: Yes, the explicit sex-ed programs will not find my support.

Fundamentalist loon.

Anonymous said...

The McCain attack dogs along with the Religious Right and Pro-lifers of Ohio who gave the second term to Bush will spin this in many ways: Palin practices what she preaches, Bristol (some name!) keeps the child, well this time the abstinence failed and it does not mean that it should not be practiced etc..

Victoria Gillick had no chance of launching the nukes !

Anonymous said...

Bristol Palin ?

Well, you would wouldn't you...

Probably not much else to do in cold Alaska..

Anonymous said...

her 17 year old daughter is a moral example to us all

Palin family values obviously start young

at least Edwin never got up the duff

Pete Wass said...

They got it out early at least. No 72 hour surprise on this story.

Anonymous said...

There's a suggestion that the "Trig is Sarah's son" rumour was started with a view to then releasing this info about Bristol (which Palin and McCain both knew about last week), and thereby taking some of the sting out of it.

I agree that it puts the whole "abstinence-only" schtick on a bit of a sticky wicket.

Anonymous said...

Whilst gloating over Palin's private life, Obama fans are still strangely quiet about Bidens virulent racism.

Anonymous said...

Hmm.. What does it all mean ?

Is she trying to grab the 'one must marry the father' vote ?

Or go for the inner-city mamma black vote ?

I only ask...- at least they won't be able to spout that 'holier than thou' back-to-basix-bolox...

Anonymous said...


I'm genuinely curious. The posts you have made about Sarah Palin have been met with a lot of liberal bile (or should that be bilge). I don't remember seeing the left leave so many comments on your site before on any one subject, particularly an american one. Are you noticing this too or is it just me.

I think it is a relection that they are genuinly worried about what this means for Obama's chances. Because of her appeal to women, the working/middle class in the swing states and to the Rocky Mountain states, they are worried that she can genuinly affect this election."

I suspect the lefties who post on here realize that a Democratic win is the only crumb of comfort they are going to get for at least a decade, so they are furious with anybody who threatens that position.

Anonymous said...

The curiosity comes from the fact that if the boot were on the other foot there'd be people on here going bonkers and beating up Democrats left, right and centre.

I'm sure the USA doesn't have to learn basic lessons in Economy and pragmatic social policies - electing Sarah Palin would just mean stagnation and holding back the US.

Obama must go on about the Economy, McCain's judgement and Healthcare.

Anonymous said...

I notice Democrats on their sites are tut tutting about Palin's daughter being pregnant. I thought Democrats were the socially liberal party. Now I'm really confused.

Anonymous said...

Still waiting to hear the leftist view on tne racist Biden. The silence thus far is deafening.

John Trenchard said...

can i discount palin and "creationism" once and for all.

education is set at STATE level. the president or vp can believe in the tooth fairy for all the effect it will have on STATE education systems.

Anonymous said...

David... perhaps they are waiting for the right-wingenuts to explain Palin's support for anti-semitic, Hilter-praising, viciously homophobic Pat Buchanan?

John Trenchard said...

two words for you leftie Obamadroids to keep in mind for October...


mark my word. its gonna be one hell of a McCain delivered October surprise.

(save the best till last and all that...)

John Trenchard said...

"September 01, 2008 10:31 PM"

a bit of background - alaska is generally recognised as one of the most libertarian minded states in the union. quite isolationist too. and pat buchanan is big on both.

if she supported buchanan in the past, then so what. she was just in tune with her electorate.

on the other hand - buchanan used to be well supported on the right over there, but he's been increasingly marginalised as his views have moved out of step with most Republicans in the post 911 world.

John Trenchard said...

"And look where all that 'experience' got him and the US.Unless that was your point?"

its now a world superpower, with bases in over 100 countries, operations in countless others, and major foothold in the Middle East, threatening the Islamic crazies in Iran. and arming the Georgians against Russian agression.

and what do we get from the EU? all talk, no trousers.

and your point is?

Anonymous said...

I had spotted her as a potential VP back in May/June. I only had one reservation and that was when I discovered her maiden name was "Sarah Heath"

At least she had the political sense to change that on marriage

Yak40 said...

Palin's daughter's situation at least puts paid to the vicious rumour mongering on Daily Kos and similar left wing loonie sites that Gov. Palin's last baby wasn't hers. The fact that it was an "unfounded rumour" didn't stop the (UK) Times repeating it.

Believe me, the Dems are afraid of McCain's pick and will do everything they can to bring her down.

Anonymous said...

Would Palin lecture abstenence to hundreds of millions of young women and teenagers in China, India and Brazil who are grappling with population problem? Given her family situation which Team McCain claim that they knew and still went ahead with the selection demonstrates the kind of person McCain is.

Could we now expect that the religious right and Bible bashers stop harassing gays in the length an breadth of America, calling them as sinners and perverts and accept that gays like pregnant unmarried teenager Bristol Palin are 'God's children and not freaks' and have as much right to their ways of life as Bristol Palin and have as much right to their privacy. My suspicion is this will not happen. The religious right, the pro-lifers and the creationist gang have a la carte agenda. That is the ugliness that otherwise decent McCain has unleashed.

By the way, I am straight, have a family, voted Tory all my life but have wonderful gay American friends
who are the subjects of attention by the religious right and Bible bashers the constituency which McCain has courted now.

Anonymous said...

Wallenstein. So blatant racial hatred, directed against Serbs, is in Obama's Democratic Party, but a (weak) link between Palin and Buchanan is not to be tolerated? Ah yes, the bizarro logic of the left.

Anonymous said...

David... who said I'm on the left??

These are politicians we're talking about... for every negative point you can find for Obama, there's one for McCain.

When the Right complain about attacks on Palin through her daughter, the Left will point to McCain's disgusting comments about 16 y/old Chelsea Clinton at a Republican fundraiser.

When the Right point to Obama's inconsistent policy statements, the Left will point to McCain's lies about this time in Vietnam.

Obama was (is?) a coke-head; so was (is?) GWB. Biden calls Serb nationalists "thugs"; Palin supports a man who praised Hitler's "courage".

It's also worth noting that McCain was equally as vocal in his support for militent Albanians as Biden was, and supported every one of Clinton's military ventures.

I'm not sure what you're trying to show... that Obama is a ruthless politician intent on the Big Prize? That his supporters will smear his opponents while glossing over his own shortcomings?

This is hardly front page news.

Perhaps you could expand on your problems re. Biden and Serbia (and explain how his views differ from those of McCain)?

Anonymous said...

Senator Biden is of the view that "Serbs are illiterate degenerates, baby killers, butchers and rapists” (Larry King Live, CNN) who "should be placed in Nazi-style concentration camps" (US Senate)? Whatever ones views about the Yugoslav wars, such vile and blatant racial hatred sullies Obama's ticket.

Anonymous said...

McCain would support the former view, surely? He actively supported bombing the Serbs, and was of the view that Serbia was engaged in genocide.

Indeed, McCain acknowledged that prevention of genocide by the Serbs was the ONLY reason for US engagement in the Balkans.

Once again it's tit-for-tat... for every anti-Serb statement from Biden we can wheel out similar sentiments from McCain, not the same intemperate language perhaps, but clearly anti-Serb in content.

Anonymous said...

McCain at 72, and with his previous medical problems
should have known better before selecting a VP candidate to keep the religious right on his side. He should have paused to think about her familial baggage that she will bring into her office, and consider whether she could function as a president (if he keeled over) surrounded by that baggage. Even the wonder woman Palin has her limits when occupying the Oval Office. When questioned about this, Steve Scmidt, McCain's Alistair Campbell says "No male candidate would ever be asked that question. . " You said it Schmidt!

The whole saga raises questions about McCain's judgement and his ability to be the leader of the free world.

Anonymous said...

No it doesn't actually.

Anonymous said...

Something I needed reminding of. The last two democratic VP nominees:

1 Joe Liebermann, now paid up member of the McCain fan club

2 John Edwards, liar and adulterer.

Now that's a track record.

Anonymous said...

My final word - from NY, Tuesday 0530pm EDT....

Still looking like a brilliant decision????

heh heh. Crazy old fool.

Anonymous said...

andy c.

Your last word on November 5th