We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Hawaiiforgets about the First Amendment. Thank God for the Bill of Rights (which the Founders felt unnecessary because freedom under limited central government was assumed, having been the entire reason for their war).
SO I'M WATCHING MCCAIN TALK ABOUT THE SUBPRIME CRISIS, and how there may be some "greedy people on Wall Street who need to go to jail."
But I heard a typically sad-toned NPR story on subprimes tonight, and despite their best efforts to evoke the Joads it was a story of people who "used their houses like ATMs," taking out home equity loan after home equity loan when they started with a subprime mortgage, only to wind up owing far more than their houses were worth and unable to make the payments. Boo hoo. Shouldn't there be a price for being an idiot? And -- despite not being on Wall Street -- a greedy idiot? Why does McCain want to bail these people out? Why does he want to put Wall Street people in jail?
Businessmen, in my experience, are generally more idealistic than politicians. Businessmen really do make deals with a handshake. No one would dream of doing that with Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi or the Clintons. Turning a businessman loose in the political world is basically a mismatch. That's the sense I get of McCain's reaction to having Romney as his last serious rival. He can't believe his good fortune; Romney is an amateur. McCain can poke him in the eye, knee him in the groin, and the rule-following businessman has no idea how to respond.
I don't view this as an argument in Romney's favor. As President, he wouldn't be dealing with honorable, law-abiding businesspeople. He would be going up against the Vladimir Putins, Osama bin Ladens and Harry Reids of the world. This is not a game for amateurs. I think we should recognize that professional politicians bring important experience and skills to the table, and that one of those skills is the ability to knee an opponent in the groin and get away with it. It's not pretty. But, compared to politics, business is beanbag, and politics is the game the Republican nominee will have to play.
On rhetoric, Bush had some fine speeches, better than Reagan in fact, and then apparently must have lost his speechwriter.
The reason to vote for him in 2000 was his comment at the October 2000 Al Smith dinner
``My opponent and I have had some strong differences. Let me tell you a few things I've learned in this campaign. He's a man who clearly respects and loves his wife and family. Like me he married-up. I've also learned he is a person of energy, skill and determination. This year, Mr. Vice-President, I can't wish you success, but I do wish you well.''
Or on the Columbia Shuttle disaster
`` The same Creator who names the stars also knows the names of the seven souls we mourn today. The crew of the shuttle Columbia did not return safely to Earth; yet we can pray that all are safely home.''