News and views from the award-winning author of the Class H Trilogy: AMERICA LIBRE, HOUSE DIVIDED and PANCHO LAND

Friday, August 29, 2008

Sarah Palin, the last straw

In choosing someone so patently unqualified to serve as commander-in-chief, the McCain camp has shed all pretensions of seeking to effectively govern this nation. It is now just about winning.

I was profoundly content when it became clear the presidential campaign in 2008 would be between Barrack Obama and John McCain. Here were two highly principled candidates who seemed determined to steer clear of the negative campaigns of the past. For the first time in my lifetime, I did not think the presidential election would be a choice between the lesser of two evils.

In very short order, my illusions were crushed.

The attack ads and smears quickly escalated. The promises by both candidates to run a clean campaign disappeared as the political hacks within each camp took over. Each man seemed genuinely offended by the other side’s low blows, yet neither tried to control those coming from their own team.

As we entered August, the campaign had descended into a mudfest worthy of Karl Rove. By the time the Democratic convention began, the McCain camp reached a new low in media chicanery, looking for ways to upstage the Dems during their national conference.

But today, with John McCain’s announcement of Sarah Palin as his running mate, the campaign crash-dived into uncharted depths in political subterfuge.

The issue of McCain’s age is bogus. A person of 72 in today’s world can be a vital and effective leader. All the same, the possibility of McCain being unable to finish a four year term is much more likely than Obama’s. That leaves Sarah Palin "a heartbeat away from the presidency" as the tired saying goes.

Here is Palin's complete political resume: One term as mayor of a city of 8,500. Two years as governor of state with a population of 400,000. In choosing someone so patently unqualified to serve as commander-in-chief, the McCain camp has shed all pretensions of seeking to effectively govern this nation. It is now just about winning.

And the American people are the real losers.


Raul Ramos y Sanchez