I watched the debate last night and I thought it was rather even. Both Obama and McCain handled themselves pretty well. McCain actually did a better job than I expected considering how Obama speaks so well. One amazing thing is how Obama comes across as so moderate - yet his public life has been one of a consistent left-winger. Whether he has really become more moderate, I just don’t know. Generally a candidate’s history tells you more about what they will do in the future than their words during the campaign. So will he be like a Trojan Horse - once he is in the White House working with a Democratic Congress to pass every liberal wish-list law ever dreamed up? I think that is a reasonable assumption.
The odd thing though is that people are talking as if this election is still in play. As I already said, this election is a done deal and Barack Obama is going to win.
McCain had one ace to play, and that was picking Sarah Palin. At first it appeared to be brilliant move. Palin has a fantastic life story, rising from housewife to PTA mom to Governor of Alaska. Palin delivered a breathtaking speech at the Republican National Convention, helped along by having a great speechwriter. The McCain-Palin ticket got a tremendous boost. McCain pulled ahead in polls for both the popular vote and electoral votes, and Obama and the Democrats were really rattled. The left-wing hate machine went into high gear to destroy Palin, and non-liberals rallied behind her and defended her point by point.
At first I was really pulling for Palin. So many of us libertarian-conservatives are hoping for a new Reagan to appear, and perhaps she was a female Reagan coming down from Alaska to help re-establish limited government and to fight for freedom. But now that Palin has given several interviews it has become painfully obvious that she is not VP material. I truly hate to say that.
You need to be quite above average in intelligence to qualify to be president of the US or a vice president of the US (because any day you could become president). Blogger Half Sigma has been saying that he estimates Palin’s IQ to be 110. While that is certainly above average, it is just not good enough for someone who must deal with the shifting complexities that confront a person thrown into the most important and hardest job on the planet.
Not only is she not smart enough for the job, she seems to know very little about policies at the national level. Perhaps she could have pulled this off is she had a lifelong interest in national affairs and national policy issues, but she does not seem to have had that. With an IQ of 110, no amount of cramming is going to get her ready in a few weeks to be VP of the US, and if her IQ really is around 110, she never will be.
To be president or vice-president of the United States, a person should be far above average in intelligence. To be considered for the job of VP, an IQ of 125 seems like a reasonable starting threshold. After all, we expect the CEOs of major companies to be very bright. Shouldn’t we want highly intelligent leaders running the country too?
Many in the public have now figured out that Palin is not a good fit for being VP. As a result, Obama has pulled way ahead in the polls for both the popular vote and the electoral vote.
It will take some truely dramatic turn of events for McCain to win this election, and I just don’t see what that could be. Perhaps Palin will dazzle everyone in her debate with Biden, but I really, really doubt this. Expectations are so low though that maybe at least she won’t do as terrible as expected. But, really, I think it will be painful to watch.
I still think that Sarah Palin has a commendable story in her rise from PTA mom to Governor of Alaska. I don’t dislike the woman, it is just that I don’t want her as the VP of the United States.
Kathleen Parker at National Review called yesterday for Palin to take the initiative and bow out giving personal family reasons. That sounds reasonable to me. I mean, as things stand McCain has already lost this election. This would at least give him one last long shot chance of turning things around.
And hey - Palin can write a book telling her life story and make millions - just like Obama did! My advice to her is to stop humiliating herself, make your millions, and go back to being Governor of Alaska where you were doing just fine.