CNN Misses the Point: Bristol Palin Promotes Abstinence

I get the newsfeed from CNN on my Google desktop and saw the headline “Bristol Palin: Abstinence for all teens ‘not realistic’ “. This was the way CNN summed up her interview with FOXNews’ Greta Van Susteren. It makes a good headline.

But that was just a tiny bit of the interview. CNN didn’t want to emphasise that the media tried to make it look like Governor Palin forced her into keeping the baby – something Bristol refuted vehemently. The whole point of the interview, which was Bristol’s idea, was to get across the message to not have sex, because the consequences can be life-changing. Here’s more of what she said. The ellipses only edit out Greta’s questions, not Bristol’s statements.

“I think everyone should just wait ten years. . . Just because it’s so much easier if you are married and if you have a house and a career – it’s just so much easier. . . I’m not the first person it’s happened to and I won’t be the last, but I’d love to be an advocate to prevent teen pregnancy. . .  Kids should just wait. It’s not glamourous at all.”

Bristol did say, “I think abstinence is like… like… the… I don’t know how to put it, like – the main… everyone should be abstinent whatever, but it’s not realistic at all.” So what did she mean by that?

She continued, ” Because it’s more and more accepted now.”

Van Susteren: “Among your classmates and kids your age?”

“Among kids my age”

Van Sustern asks what can be done to change this. “To see stories like this and to see other stories of teen mums. It something… you should just wait ten years…”

So the lack of realism about abstinence is a matter of this “is” rather than the “ought”. Bristol is not saying that abstinence is not a realistic goal, but rather not a realistic view of the way things are now. A way she wants to change for others.

Video of the  full interview is available on the FOXNews website.

Specious Analogies and the Liberal Politics of Hate

What a contrast in two blogs.

The Alaskan Anti-Palin, the very popular liberal blogger AKMuckraker over at Mudflats, has compared the governor of that state and current GOP Vice Presidential candidate to the White Witch of Narnia. By the time  I read the article posted yesterday, there were over 250 cheerleading comments by fellow liberals who have happily fallen into the same fallacies that AKMuckraker has pulled together to create her analogy. Some were even so absurd as to say that Lewis would be impressed or happy with the analogy. Some recognised and lauded the obvious parallel analogy of Obama to Aslan. (An Aslan who apparently be happy with leaving unsuccessfully aborted babies in cupboards to die. Yeah, that’s what would make Lewis proud. Definitely.)

In contrast, over at Hillbuzz, a pro-Hillary pro-McCain pro-Palin blog – yes, a Democrat blog – you can see what Obama followers have done in Gainesville, Virginia. This was picked up by the local press in Northern Virginia, but it doesn’t seem to have made any national outlet. Funny that. Something tells me if it had been anti-Obama messages spray painted, there would have been a lot more interest.

At least the hanging effigy of Sarah Palin in West Hollywood, California was picked up by the press. That was so over the top it really would have been hard to miss. But again, if it had been Obama . . . Well, it doesn’t even bear thinking about all of the recriminations. The same house also had McCain in the chimney with flames around him. The local CBS affiliate wanted to be sure their coverage was balanced and unbiased, so they mentioned that the vandalism went both ways. There was a report of a single Obama yard sign in the LA area that had a racial slur on it.

There Was a Kernell of Truth After All

There are a few, mostly conservative, blogs that have picked up the story about David Kernell being indicted for hacking into Sarah Palin’s Yahoo email account. Strangely when it comes to mainstream media, more quality outlets in the UK seemed to have picked this up than their US counterparts.

Now I can understand how Barak Obama’s ties to terrorist William Ayers have trumped the Kernell/Palin coverage, but still you think there would be more. Kernell is, after all, the son of a Democratic lawmaker. His alleged actions constitute a crime. He breached the privacy of a Vice Presidential candidate.

When Kernell wass first suspected, liberal bloggers immediately cried foul and said conservatives were just jumping to conclusions and trying to pin this on Democrats. Any retractions from the liberal blogosphere?

How Sarah Won the Debate

I fell asleep on the sofa last night after a 13-hour day, which include prospective parents night at school. Fortunately I had set the telly to SkyNews, as I knew they would be carrying the VP debate live. I woke up not too far into it and watch the rest.

Part of me wanted to be discouraged, because Biden is clearly a more experienced debater and extemporaneous speaker. But then I remembered that the Vice Presidency is not about debate or extemporaneous speaking. In fact, these aren’t even skills that a VP needs.

I also remembered that many American voters are more impressed with plain talking than smooth debating. Palin didn’t make any significant mistakes. She stayed on message with the campaign.

If winning the debate means that she out argued her opponent, I don’t know if she won. If it means she was an asset to her ticket and improved their chances, then perhaps she did.

Right to Privacy or Piracy?

For the Left, a woman’s right to privacy extends to the distinct organism that may be temporarily living in her womb, but not to her emails. Well, at least not if she is a Republican. Wait, come to think of it, she doesn’t even get the right to privacy over her womb, either.

There is much ado about the fact that hackers broke into Sarah Palin’s Yahoo account. The Left are quite proud of the illegal activity of their compatriots – activity that if it involved the account of a Democrat would be part of the great Right Wing Conspiracy and just further evidence of the corruption of the Republican Party. Shades of Watergate and all that, I dare say. But since it is the much-hated Mrs Palin, she’s fair game.

The only problem is that Sarah’s email doesn’t divulge a smoking gun. The Left want to regulate what sort of people can say what sort of things in their private email, so if Sarah said anything relevant to her position as governor, they believe the public (meaning left-wing hacks who are looking for ways to chip away at the McCain-Palin ticket) should have access to it. They have therefore tried to insert what they can between the lines to make the emails juicier.  The general tenor of their approach seems to be, “She’s a Republican, she’s conservative, she’s a Christian for pete’s sake. There’s gotta be some muck that will stick to her. If we look hard enough, surely we will find something.” They have, after all, thrown everything at her.

Since the policies and values of the Republican Party generally, and Palin specifically, resonate much more with the American people – the ones denigrated as stupid idiots in left-wing blogs – liberals are left with trying to find scandals. They can’t win on policy. They can’t win on experience. Their empty message of change has been usurped by a substantive message of change – not change for the sake of it, but change to those things that need further reform or adjustment.

And they have to hack into Palin’s emails, because Obama’s campaign made sure we knew that John McCain can’t send them. Why they wanted to make fun of the the fact that he can’t use a computer keyboard because of the injuries he suffering in Vietnam, I don’t know. It’s apparently part of their strategy: “Don’t vote for John McCain, he’s old and he’s crippled.”

Republicans aren’t hacking in Barak Obama’s emails. They don’t need to. It’s pretty obvious there’s not going to be anything in what he says in private. After all, there’s not anything to what he says in public.

When Lack of Vetting Hurts

You gotta feel sorry for liberal journalists when one of their own rips them apart. Clearly the hosts of a Pacifica Radio program thought they were going to throw softballs to former Democratic US Senator Mike Gravel so that he could take big swings against Sarah Palin’s nomination. After all, Gravel is from Alaska and ideologically quite opposite from Palin. Seemed a sure bet.

Did they ever get it wrong. This is a YouTube clip of the radio interview, with a slide show featuring various photos alternating between Gravel and the Palin family.

Fake and Real Quotes

I have seen blogs railing against Sarah Palin based on quotes from interviews in the Anchorage Daily News.  I was glad when I got the latest Snopes.com update newsletter. As they do, the good folks at Snopes have identified the source, which was, as you might suspect, not the Anchorage Daily News. So, as usual, Palin’s detractors spend much of their time battling a straw man. After all, this is so much easier than dealing with the real woman.

In the same update, I learned about Charlie Daniels’ commentary on Barak Obama’s disparaging remarks about those people who cling to their religion and their guns. As you might expect, the rather unacademic Country musician reflects the feelings of that part of America looked down upon by the snobs on either coast.

Joe Biden’s Disabled Thinking

I’ve been quite busy with work, so I haven’t had a chance to write anything the last couple of days. I had ideas about which subjects to broach, but having just seen this story, I know now what I want to say.

At a campaign stop in Columbia, Missouri, Joe Biden said: “I hear all this talk about how the Republicans are going to work in dealing with parents who have both the joy … and the difficulty of raising a child who has a developmental disability, who were born with a birth defect. Well, guess what, folks? If you care about it, why don’t you support stem cell research?”

This was clearly aimed at Sarah Palin, because John McCain supports stem cell research. I don’t agree with him, and neither does Sarah, but he does. But it exposes Biden’s attempt to appeal to emotion without any regard for logic or reason. Biden assumes that to care about children with birth defects, it is necessary to choose doing something about them as the ultimate moral action, trumping all others.

Biden is saying that if you really care about birth defects, you cannot believe that the human life of the embryo is sacred. Only people who believe in the disposability of embryonic life can call themselves caring.

Biden also ignores the fact that stem cell research will do nothing for those parents who already have a child born with a birth defect. It will not ease their difficulty one bit. So why would someone who is going to “work in dealing with parents who have both the joy … and the difficulty of raising a child” with birth defects have to support stem cell research? Biden is only playing on the ignorance of his audience.

And Sarah Palin does not opposed stem cell research. She only opposes embryonic research. There is a lot of research that is ongoing using the stem cells of adults. After all, we all produce stem cells. Why doesn’t Biden mention that?

Is this the best attack he can make – to combine logical fallacies and factual errors? Is this what Sarah Palin is up against?

I thought Joe Biden might put some substance to Obama’s empty platitudes. I thought we might see something more than smoke and mirrors- something more than unsupportable policies built on the sandy foundation of emotional appeal and the politics of envy. Is it really any surprise that the Republican ticket is moving ahead in the polls?

Evangelical Leakage

I was surfing around the blogosphere and I have been observing some of the evangelical leakage to the Democrats in this Presidential election. It seems to come from three main sources, the emerging church movement, the black churches, and the apathetic. As I was reading in blogs, especially in the comboxes, I was struck by several things.

First, there is the appeal Obama has because he talks about compassion and helping the little people, especially with the big people’s money. It is spiritualizing the politics of jealousy. After all, Jesus said we should take care of the poor. Jesus didn’t seem to like rich people very much and said they would have trouble getting into the Kingdom of Heaven. The thing the emerging Christian socialist church seems to have missed is that Jesus never said we should rob the rich to take care of the poor.

What I have seen of the emerging “missional” churches seems to be Marxist Mennonite, squishy Anabaptist pietism, drunk deeply from the well of Ronald Sider. Obama is seen as the pacifist, caring candidate, who has adopted the views of the great philosopher Rodney “can’t we all just get along” King.

These churches also seem to be suffering from foetus fatigue. The abortion issue, for a long time the very first litmus test, is getting boring to some. The emerging church is quite wrapped up finding ways to live the word of Jesus in the New Testament and since Jesus didn’t talk about abortion, this has become a side issue. The only problem is that Christians that believe the Bible, whether Protestant, Catholic or Orthodox (in other word, other than a small liberal fringe) recognise that abortion is murder. So it seems that mass murder is not the issue it used to be.

Then there are the black evangelical churches. These had been moving more and more toward the Republican Party because in a election between two white men, it was clear that while neither was perfect, the Republicans have stood for traditional family values and those issues which have been important to all evangelicals. They could see how uncomfortable white Democrats were when they were campaigning in black churches (something with which the IRS would have had a field day if it had been Republican candidates campaigning in white churches, but that’s for another time).

During recent elections, black and predominately white churches were joining together in various prayer gatherings and vigils. They were all praying for the election of candidates that reflected the same set of values.

Now there is a black candidate. As I have said before, he is someone who has nothing in common with them culturally. He is not a descendant of slaves or a victim of racial discrimination. But he is black, mostly because his supporters are suddenly happy to adopted the One Drop Rule, ignoring the Supreme Court in Loving v. Virginia. Like I have said before, unlike almost all of them, he is actually an African-American. Suddenly the possibility of having a man with similar skin tone in the White House is all that matters.

Sadly, I don’t think that the addition of Sarah Palin to the GOP ticket will swing either of these segments of the evangelical vote. However, she has and will continue to energise the apathetic. These were the ones who got excited about Mike Huckabee. These are the ones the Left really loves to hate. In fact, the more the Left  vent their hatred on Palin, the more energised these people get. They had no reason to get excited about McCain, but now they have one of their own. Hopefully this will stop enough of the leakage.

Desperately Trying to Find a Scandal

You gotta give the Left credit. When they want to get nasty, they don’t give up.

I have never seen so many scandals surrounding one person so fast as the Left has started slinging everything they can find at Sarah Palin. Okay, I suppose you can’t call them scandals, since the people of Right and Center aren’t particularly scandalised. And you can’t really say the Left are slinging mud, because that implies there’s some actual dirt.

How could Sarah Palin have an 80% approval rating in a state so small that everyone is in everyone else’s business if there was actually a problem?

They know that people are going to retaliate when whistle-blowers try to clean things up in government.

These are people that already knew Bristol was pregnant. And I’m sure, if his MySpace account had been accurately “uncovered”, they already knew that Levi is a jerk. (Some of them might even have daughters who have messed up with jerks. It is only leftwingers whose daughters always hook up with model citizens – probably because they are rebelling against their parents.)

They knew she goes to an Assembly of God church and if she wants to be a Charismatic/Pentecostal, with all that particular theological baggage,  then that’s her perogative. They’re not surprised that Christians want to evangelise the whole world. They aren’t even worried about their governor standing in front her church urging people to pray for American soldiers in Iraq, that God would guide their path.

Every time another liberal blogger starts blathering about another “-gate”, thinking they finally uncovered the truth that will shock the nation, they just demonstrate how out of step they are with mainstream America.

Palin’s Creationism Hurts Obama’s Chances

So it’s not bad enough that Sarah Palin is pro-life, she is a creationist? She may even support the teaching of Intelligent Design. The liberal blogosphere is in a tizzy. How could such a person be running for Vice President?

They somehow think this is going to be a negative. In all of their haughtiness, they forget that most Americans are creationists. According the a 2005 CBS poll, only 15% of respondents believe humans evolved without God being involved. 51% said God created humans in their present form. For creationists and other ID proponents, Palin’s views only confirm her credentials.

Despite the hopes of the shrieking Left, Palin’s views will not drive any voters away.

The issues was made directly relevant to voter preferences by a CBS poll in the aftermath of the 2004 election. It found that 47% of Kerry voters believe that God created humans in their present form. Another 28% of Kerry voters believed in God-guided evolution. 56% of Kerry voters wanted Creationism and evolution taught in schools.  24% of Kerry voters wanted Creationism taught instead of evolution.

Clearly if Obama is going to be more successful than Kerry and actually win, he will need the support of creationists and ID proponents. I am very happy for his supporters in the blogosphere (or anywhere else for that matter) to continue mocking them and deriding them. Alienate them – please.  It just further demonstrates that Obama’s beliefs and values are not those of middle America.

Albert Mohler on Trig Palin and the Value of Life

Back in May of this year, Sarah Palin was the subject of a blog post by Dr Albert Mohler, president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Mohler mentions then that she is often mentioned as a potential running mate for John McCain, so perhaps he was less surprised than I was when this came to pass.

However, this is not the subject or focus of his post. Rather it is about the Palin’s youngest child, Trig. It is worth a few moments of your time.

Where’s Al Franken When They Need Him?

I’m sure many of you have seen this from the Republican National Committee.

While someone on the Left with a lot of time and little imagination is doing the fake blog thing to make fun of Sarah Palin, the RNC has a Facebook spoof on Obama.

You’d think with Big Fat Idiots like Al Franken running for the US Senate, the Democrats could come up with something more entertaining. After all, his sole credential for sitting in the upper house of most powerful legislative body in the world is that he is a satirical comedian. Why aren’t they fully tapping into their resources?

God-tard

I just gotta share this one.

I was out surfing WordPress for the reaction to the Sarah Palin presumptive nomination. I couldn’t resist leaving a few intelligent comments on liberal blogs. In response, I learned a new word. It was the first time I’ve ever been called a “God-tard“. That has got to be the epitome of a juvenile insult. I don’t think this guy is going to make the debate team when he gets to high school.

I thought I wouldn’t have to deal with pubescent brains until school starts next week. I was enjoying the break.

Facebook and MySpace block under-13s. It’s a shame WordPress doesn’t do the same.

The Republicans Now Have the Hottest Ticket

I’m sure I’m not the only one who wasn’t expecting Sarah Palin to get the nod for the VP spot on the GOP ticket. The Democrats may have had the first woman to run for Vice President, but the Republicans have the hottest woman to ever be a VP nominee. Yep, we just won the photogenic stakes.

I think this actually matters. Let’s face it, Joe Biden – as nice a guy as he is, and yes, I cried during his son’s introduction at the Demo Convention – does not bring anything to the ticket. None one is going to vote for Obama because of Biden’s got more experience in foreign policy. The VP is not the President’s chief foreign policy advisor. That’s why he hires a Secretary of State. Then he’s got a Deputy Secretary, Under Secretaries, Assistant Secretaries, National Security Advisor, and a host of other hopefully really smart people.

No one is going to vote for Obama because he’s got an old guy on his ticket as well. No one is going to think, sure, Obama’s young, but there’s an older man who will go from being one of the most powerful men in the Senate to being the tie-breaking vote, in case there ends up being a 50-50 party split.

On the other hand, people will vote for McCain because he has a younger pretty woman on the ticket. She will attract Hillary supporters who wanted their woman on the Demo ticket. It’s the politics of gender. There are those for whom having a woman on the ticket is as important as it is for others to have a black man. And youth balances out McCain’s years in a way that age does not work for Obama. When people are looking for heroes they want Batman and Robin (or Batgirl, in this case), not Batman and Alfred. It doesn’t look good for the side-kick to appear more qualified that the principle.

But Sarah Palin doesn’t just bring women on board. The irony is that not only will she attract Hillary supporters, she will also attract some of the most virulent Hillary haters. She is rock solid conservative. She’s a member of the Assemblies of God. She is a poster-mother for the pro-life movement.  She is the answer to everything Republican voters questioned about John McCain’s conservatism.

And she is a lot better looking than Hillary. She doesn’t look strident. She doesn’t look aggressive. She’s feminine and unlike Hillary, she doesn’t have to work hard to look that way.

Oh, and she has held elective office for longer than Hillary. After all, Hillary claimed to be the candidate with experience. And she could claim this, having served in the Senate four years longer than Obama. Of course, Obama had those eight years in the Illinois Senate and Clinton had never held any other elected office. But I digress. . . Palin has held elective office since 1992 – five years before Obama – though she was out of office between 2002 and 2006. However, during 2003-04, she was Ethics Commissioner of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. Unique amongst all the names on the two major tickets, she is the only one to have held office in the executive branch of government.

As a brief aside, I should mention that despite the whim of a group of editors on Wikipedia, the First Lady is never “in office“. Despite her delusions of grandeur, or her ability to henpeck her husband, she is never a member of the executive branch of goverment.

Last night, I thought Tom Pawlenty was both the best and most likely choice. I’m glad I was wrong. Palin has all the advantages of Pawlenty and more. Put another way, she is Mike Huckabee without any of the baggage acquired during the primary season. Sarah Palin makes me want to come back to the States and start canvassing voters.