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August 31, 2008

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In other words, a presidential campaign makes one qualified to be president. Sounds like she will be qualified too by the end of the campaign or not.

"elevating arbitrary categories over underlying factual realities"
Congratulations. That is the most concise description of the last few Republican Presidential campaigns that I have seen to date.

Rich's comment being a case in point.

Great post. The problem being, of course, that the American public is too stupid to figure this out on their own.

I think the Obama campaign gets this. They're going to stay away from attacking Palin on experience and focus on the fact that nothing about McCain's platform has changed as a result of the pick.

I'd also like to see them suggest this pick shows how McCain is reckless. Going after his judgment, rather than Palin's record, is the way to go at this.

Slightly OT, but there is something daft about this whole argument. It seems as if Democrats are being asked to either justify the collective decision made by their primary voters, or else shut up about the decision made by McCain. Only somebody with the patience of a Hilzoy could be bothered to dissect the sloppy thinking involved in such a comparison. To mention only the most obvious point: in a democracy, voters don't have to explain themselves to anybody. They are sovereign. Candidates for office OTOH are normally expected to present reasons for major decisions.

Publius, I'm not sure who your post is addressed to. I suppose there are people out here who simultaneously:
1. Are open to earnest and serious argument on the meaning and value of 'experience'; and
2. Are still undecided between Obama and McCain.
But are we talking dozens, or what?

Palin has more 'executive experience' than John McCain. Let us heap praise upon her for that.

--TP

RICH, maybe Palin would be qualified by the end of the campaign, but it'd be nice for the voters if there was any evidence that she'd ever given any thought to political issues outside of the great state of Alaska, or if there was more time before the general election for her to demonstrate her great judgment and insight.

But other than that, the parallels between her and Obama are perfect! After all, all inexperience is equivalent! Somebody picked off the street would be just as inexperienced as Obama so it would be hypocritical of you to pick on Joe Schmoe!

RICH, maybe Palin would be qualified by the end of the campaign, but it'd be nice for the voters if there was any evidence that she'd ever given any thought to political issues outside of the great state of Alaska,

I don't believe she got a passport until 2007.

The thing is: the people who claim that Obama has "no executive experience" seem to be under the misapprehension that running a government agency or organization is the only sort of executive experience there is. Which is an odd thing for Republicans (or anyone) to assume.

"A lot of those 18 million [Clinton] voters feel disenfranchised and betrayed," said Chuck Smith, a delegate from Virginia Beach, speaking over the clatter of his Amtrak train en route to Minneapolis. "They have to go somewhere, and I think this will give them an opportunity to vote for someone who really represents change. I mean, [Palin] is as far away from Washington, D.C., as you can get without leaving the continental United States."

Translation: she's from Alaska! It's so far away! She's so maverick! But she's not from Hawaii - ewwww. Is that even American? I think that's a Muslim country.

There are quite a few people who do believe Palin is more qualified than Obama, and these people will probably vote McCain/Palin, but that doesn't really matter. The question is whether anyone will vote McCain/Palin *because* they believe Palin has the experience for the job, and here I am quite certain the answer is no. Causality clearly goes the other way.

By the way, one of Palin's previous scandals had to do with firing the Wasilla librarian upon assuming office. With some luck, 2 years after dealing with the local librarian she will move on to Putin. Isn't that proof that the American Dream is still working?

Simpler translation: White people from the far reaches of our continental-sized country are frontierspeople! The darkies should have been finished off when we had the chance.

By the way, one of Palin's previous scandals had to do with firing the Wasilla librarian upon assuming office.

And police chief. Just the sort of executive experience we want.

Oh. Am I being sexist for being concerned about that?

When it comes to having sex with Governor Palin's husband, Obama is a total neophyte in comparison to Governor Palin. Does America really want to vote for someone so out of touch that they haven't cherished the lusty embrace of Governor Palin's husband to be in charge of our nation's security? When it comes to America's safety, John McCain will follow Governor Palin's husband's sexual needs to the gates of hell!

Great post, publius. It drives me crazy every time I hear a Republican or a pundit claim that Palin has just as much political experience as Obama -- and more executive experience to boot! This is false, but the Republicans clearly know that a slightly plausible lie repeated endlessly in a voice of authority will eventually sound to many people like the truth. Unfortunately, it's difficult for the Democrats to rebut this claim, since they risk the charge that they protest too much. As others have said, their best strategy is probably to ignore Palin and keep up the heat on McCain. Still, it's intensely frustrating to hear the Republican lies repeated without contradiction -- so thank you for making the counterargument!

The great things about Palin's firing of the librarian and police chief of Wassila are: (1) the police chief had been a cop for about three decades, and was well respected; (2) she fired them for endorsing her opponent in the mayoral race, and a judge later said that's cool in small-town Alaska; and (3) just like in all these other things that have come up, when the press confronted Palin about the firings she lied and said she hadn't done them, whereupon the police chief released the termination letter she'd written him. She really is looking like a dime-store version of George W Bush.

Am I being sexist for being concerned about that?

clearly.

Actually you misrepresent Obama's 'experience'.

He won his first race by using technicalities to throw his opponent off the ballot. He won the US Senate race by cutting a deal to take all the credit for legislation passed in the state Senate over the long time sponsors of the legislation.

Look at the facts objectively, without bias, and you will see that Obama can give a good speach, can lie and take credit for others work and can avoid accountabilty, but that is about all he can do.

None of what Obama has done qualifies him to be president.

you will see that Obama can give a good speach,

Quite right. After all, what is a speech but a demonstration of the speaker's mastery of one or multiple topics, and her ability to persuade others of the merits of her position? They should ban speeches from the political process altogether, before the American public gets it into their heads that their political leaders need to think and persuade in their daily duties.

The only people who care about "executive experience" or pundits and wingnuts. It's an ex post facto reason to back somebody you're already backing.

you will see that Obama can give a good speach, can lie and take credit for others work and can avoid accountabilty, but that is about all he can do.

None of what Obama has done qualifies him to be president.

If he can do all that, he's already one up on Bush on the speaking front.

gwangung:And police chief. Just the sort of executive experience we want.

Oh. Am I being sexist for being concerned about that?

Are you being stupid now?

Ken, have you already abandoned your previous theme? You didn't mention how Hillary would have been a much better candidate. Why don't you tell us about how your are sympathetic to Dems, but given the nomination of Palin, you have no choice but to vote for McCain-Palin?

RE Palin's executive record as a "reformer", see the Anchorage Daily News story TPM has highlighted: not only has Palin lied about opposing the Bridge To Nowhere (lobbied for the project, and kept the money after the bridge itself was cancelled), she's STILL building an access road for the bridge - call it "The Road To Nowhere" because there are federal funds for it, and unlike the bridge funding Alaska can't keep the money if it cancels the road.

I am completely departing from Hilzoy and publius here. I really think this argument is so stupid it doesn't even need to be debunked. And if anyone of reasonable intelligence espouses it, it's reason to think they're being insincere.

And I really think most people see right through, except those who would just really believe anything to justify the conclusion their hearts were set on.

Ara,

I hope you're right, but the credulity of many Americans never ceases to amaze me.

I wish I could say otherwise, but I thought it was completely obvious in 2004 that George Bush was a total disaster. The fact that the race is close even now -- after four more years of mayhem -- speaks for itself.

"A lot of those 18 million [Clinton] voters feel disenfranchised and betrayed," said Chuck Smith, a delegate from Virginia Beach, speaking over the clatter of his Amtrak train en route to Minneapolis. "They have to go somewhere, and I think this will give them an opportunity to vote for someone who really represents change. I mean, [Palin] is as far away from Washington, D.C., as you can get without leaving the continental United States."

Translation: she's from Alaska! It's so far away! She's so maverick! But she's not from Hawaii - ewwww. Is that even American? I think that's a Muslim country.

Alaska is outside the continental United States.

I second Ara. It's a disingenuous and laughable argument that should be laughed at. Just like the assertion that Alaska's proximity to Russia is foreign policy experience. To which I respond by ROTFLMAO.

"Look at the facts objectively, without bias"

Because that's what ken is here to do.

Okay, I've found one argument even dumber.

It was one thing when some idiot Fox commentator mentions that Alaska is close to Russia, and that's Palin's experience on foreign policy.

Another entirely when Cindy McCain does it.

That means... GASP ... this is actually a campaign talking point.

Begah, br! Beat me to it!

There are quite a few people who do believe Palin is more qualified than Obama, and these people will probably vote McCain/Palin...

I get where you're going, but I actually think that this isn't the case. Any more than there were people in 2004 who 'thought' that GWB's military service was more honorable than John Kerry's...
That is, no one thinks that. Some people profess to think that, because it advances otherwise difficult-to-make arguments (eg that snorting coke until you're 30 and making money on business deals with daddy's friends is somehow good prep for being president).

Anyone who wants to say that Palin's mayoral time is valuable executive experience that Obama, Biden, and McCain lack should be asked if they would support any 2-term small town mayor for President over the existing candidates.

Jes,
Are you being stupid now?

I think he's making fun of the GOP talking point that any criticism of Palin is de facto sexism.

Bwah! And of course "My husband was a Navy boy. His father and mother were in the Navy. I mean, there's nothing elitist about that." Also, he was a PoW. Does Cindy know that?

If "executive experience" is the reason she was selected, why not choose Carly Fiorina?

Carleton: I think he's making fun of the GOP talking point that any criticism of Palin is de facto sexism.

Oh. *facepalm* Okay. Sorry.

I still can't get over it. She even says 'nucular'.

But she hasn’t — and the idea that calling everything “executive” trumps Obama’s accomplishments just doesn’t work.

it's going to work well enough to keep the press from focusing on anything substantive. and that's all McCain needs.

In other words, a presidential campaign makes one qualified to be president.

Running a *successful* presidential campaign, one that defeats an odds-on favorite and political insider. One that has demonstrated admirable message discipline and long-term strategic thinking. Yes, that shows management skills. It's not sufficient to show presidental material, but it's something.
If Palin were to show that kind of ability during the remainder of the election, Id be impressed. Of course, I don't expect that kind of strategic thinking from someone who has an 8-year-old understanding of lying (ie lying about something that's sure to come out later and make her look bad). Who fired someone (ie making a big deal out of something that otherwise might have gone unnoticed) when they didn't do something unethical for her. etc.
She's only been in big-time politics for a year-and-a-half, and she's made some mistakes. Maybe even well-intentioned mistakes (eg knowing her brother-in-law, maybe she realises that he doesnt have the character to be a good cop, and is frustrated that she can't act on that legitimately). Maybe after half a decade as mayor and some years in DC learning how the federal government works, she'd be a good candidate (I mean, Id never vote for her, but a qualified candidate).

I think of her small-time mayor period as roughly equivalent to Obama's community organizing job: grassroots issues, politics on a personal scale. Points to Palin for being in charge. Points to Obama for working in an urban environment with more pressing issues than where to locate the new ice-skating rink.

Fiorina. Or, better, Meg Whitman. People would have been buzzing.

She's smart as a whip. Would have helped McCain's maverick image much more than Palin.

The only people who care about "executive experience" [are] pundits and wingnuts.

Hey – I resemble that remark!

Jes: I’m sorry I agree with you on a lot here. That must make you uncomfortable. ;)

Fiorina.....Whitman.....or Christy Todd Whitman.....

Those would have been some problematic choices for the Democrats.

Fiorina.....Whitman.....or Christy Todd Whitman.....

Those would have been some problematic choices for the Democrats.

But in each case, the theocons would have flipped out, negating any benefit he'd have gotten from picking her.

Let's remember the goal here -- despite any statements to the contrary, this pick represents outreach to the bible thumpers much more than it does to the PUMAs

OCSteve: Jes: I’m sorry I agree with you on a lot here. That must make you uncomfortable. ;)

grrrr'rrragh.

Have another peanut butter cookie. Guaranteed to turn anyone into a rabid Pandagonian feminist.

I don't like to think how many calories each one of these has: I got 12 out of 2 cups of peanut butter, 2 cups of sugar, 2 eggs, and half a cup of jumbo raisins. Half of them have melted chocolate on top.

(Actually, I made them for a bakesale, and all but one got sold. But you can go on giving virtual cookies away forever.)

Nucular.

Moaning about Obama's inexperience, a scant two weeks ago, Jim Geraghty wrote in a National Review blog, "By this standard, I guess we will be hearing about how Tim Kaine's four years as a member of the Richmond City Council were valuable experience in preparation for the vice-presidency."

The punchline is obvious enough, but of course another National Review blogger, Lisa Schiffren, stepped up on Friday to drive it home: "...it is a real, core, strength of Palin's that she got to the
governorship by herself. PTA to city council, to mayor, to governor..."

There is something to be said about the serious betrayal of the American voters confidence in its elected officials when they carry the water for a campaign so utterly removed from the realities of today. The punditry has a built in excuse.

Sen. Graham, Gov. Pawlenty, and others who have lauded, defended or supported the selection of a candidate who is so transparently unprepared for the challenges that await, should reflect on their commitments to the office they hold and the citizens in which they serve at the pleasure of.

Pawlenty is done as governor due to term limits, but Sen. Graham (not sure about his district), during the course of this election has proven unfit and should be voted out of office.

Qualifications for the office of President of the United States, United States Constitution, Article II, section 1, para. 5:

No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.
Senator Obama's status as a birthright citizen over 35 with more than fourteen years of residence in the United States qualifies him to serve as president.

In any event, the twenty-second amendment clearly indicates that the American constitution does not reflect a high value on experience in persons holding the office of the presidency.

Neil, that also conveniently skips over Kaine's 4 years as mayor of Richmond (a city about 30 times the size of Wasilla) and 4 years as lieutenant governor before he was elected governor of Virginia (one year before Palin's gubernatorial election, and Virginia has about 12 times the population of Alaska).

If you guys don't start talking about something imminently important, like say

a) Hurricane Gustav and his friends

b) police raiding protester's houses in Minneapolis

I'm gonna be mean to the kitty. You don't want me to be mean to the kitty.

Quick prediciton:

I guarantee the GOP will wind up using Hurricane Gustav as an example where Palin's executive experience is a plus.

Already, McCain just finished teleconferencing with the RNC on the decision to scale back Monday's events to a bare, bare minimum -- the way CNN televised it came across as The General was addressing the nation, not until the end did you realize he was talking to his team in St. Paul.

And already, the GOP has a theme: Our Republican hats are off, our American hats are on.

They can theme anything -- it's what they're good at.

Of course, it's hard to ignore the irony of Gustav essentially shutting down the Republican National Convention, on the third anniversary of Katrina.

Michael Moore got himself in trouble for making this point in MM fashion last night or the night before.

To be sure, it's something you don't want to score political points with. However, when the dust settles, I feel it's incumbent on Dems to point out how, among other things, the Iraq War has proved to be an additional fool's errand when national disasters erupt.

Also, I'd advise Obama and Biden to stay every bit as visible as McCain and Palin in the next week.

It's me again - The guy who disagrees with almost everything I read here. But at least it's not crazy talk.

Here's the important point regarding "Executive Experience". It's an Obama-campaign talking point. And everyone knows it's a talking point. And it’s an Obama technique to build a strawman and then bravely argue against it. (“If they want to attack Obama’s executive experience …”)

So when you take the time to "objectively" analyze it, you sound like intelligent but obedient robots. You’re not having the impact on the "stupid" American public that you hope you are.

In fact you're just powering the gut feeling people have that any American who struggles against an entrenched bureaucracy will be attacked by the bureaucracy. You’re strengthening your opponents with your attacks.

dfp21,

That is blatantly false. It's a Republican talking point. Just look at the delicious irony cataloged by josh marshal yesterday. It has "McCain picks Sarah Palin" at the top of the RNC webpage followed by "check out NotReady08.com?" The RNC has conveniently scrubbed this from their website. But you can still go to their lack of executive experience propaganda site.

Why are we playing defense on this?

It should be obvious that John McCain felt a need to shore up his *total* lack of executive experience.

I have considerable respect for the ability of the rough-and-tumble of the Illinois state house to sharpen wits and stimulate vision in its members in advance of Federal office.

but Sen. Graham (not sure about his district), during the course of this election has proven unfit and should be voted out of office.

er...Senators' 'districts' are the whole state - in this case, SC. Yes, he is absolutely without shame, and was so long before this election, but I think he's pretty safe (unfortunately).

I love that delegate from VA Beach saying that AK is the furthest you can get from DC in the 'continental US'. He means 'in the continental united states' the way some people mean 'literally': IOW, *outside* the continental united states, and 'figuratively', respectively.

I like to relate it to NFL teams hiring a new head coach, and whether you'd rather go with a college head coach who has never worked in the NFL, or an NFL coordinator who has never been a head coach. Basically it becomes a question of whether it's better to have been the head coach but never have worked at that level, or to have spent some time at that level but never held the job of a head coach.

Roughly speaking, guys who have been in the NFL before, regardless of past head coaching positions held or not held, have a much stronger record than college head coaches jumping to the new level. They just better understand the scope of the job, how to handle an NFL locker room, and how to deal with owners, front office, and so on.

Roughly speaking, guys who have been in the NFL before, regardless of past head coaching positions held or not held, have a much stronger record than college head coaches jumping to the new level. They just better understand the scope of the job, how to handle an NFL locker room, and how to deal with owners, front office, and so on.

IIRC this topic has come up more than once on the Football Outsiders website, and in the opinion of multiple commentators there the key ingredient which favors the NFL coordinators is having a network of contacts with other assistant coaches (who also have NFL experience) with which to build a staff around.

In other words, you can't just pull together a staff from scratch, and the college coaches (especially the big name ones who have been in the college ranks for an extended period of time racking up wins and getting good press, e.g. Steve Spurrier) end up pulling in an entire staff from the college ranks with little or no NFL experience from top to bottom, which is why they end up tanking with such predictable frequency.

I'm not sure how this analogy applies to Gov. Palin, except that if she has to step in as POTUS she will either be almost totally dependant on McCain's staff, or will have to bring in her own people who have no national and international experience, at all.

RICH: "In other words, a presidential campaign makes one qualified to be president. Sounds like she will be qualified too by the end of the campaign or not."

I don't think people should simply laugh off the sarcasm there.

The more I think about it, the more I think Democrats don't want to get into a pissing match about Palin's experience -- if I were a Republican, I'd simply shine it right back on Obama, who, after all, took an overseas tour to shore up his.

The Dems set themselves up for this line of attack when they nominated a one-term Senator who spent half of that term eyeing up the White House.

They'd be much wiser to get back to debating the issues, which Obama set up strongly in his acceptance speech -- it would be foolish and possibly fatal to get off message.

Obama got started as a community organizer, you have to start somewere: Palin got started in the PTA. Was one's work any less important than the other?

---

byrn: "After all, what is a speech but a demonstration of the speaker's mastery of one or multiple topics, and her ability to persuade others of the merits of her position?"

I'm not sure the Dems want to go there, either. The GOP seemed to be gaining more traction than Clinton -- although she certainly had a great deal of success in the last half of the campaign -- with the "he gives a great speech, but . . ." line of attack.

Prepared remarks are prepared for a reason -- Obama's delivery has as much to do with the words in terms of separating him as a great orator.

He wasn't nearly as effective in debating, when thinking on one's feet is the more needed skill.

MLK was a greater speaker than Obama, but I don't know if he would have been a great president.

ThatLeftTurnInABQ:

the key ingredient which favors the NFL coordinators is having a network of contacts with other assistant coaches (who also have NFL experience) with which to build a staff around.

In other words, you can't just pull together a staff from scratch

That's an excellent analogy. I think this is a clear statement of what a lot of people felt was one of HRC's pluses: she already knew everybody. People joked about her running on her Rolodex, but an awful lot of politics is just plain knowing people.

In a Republic, every elected official stands in for a bunch of people they know, and the question should be less "do I like Al or Anne better?" and more "whose friends do I think are more trustworthy/competant, Al's or Anne's?"

Palin knows *nobody*, and that's part of what we mean by "no experience" -- she has no experience with the people she'd have to deal with, and she has no entourage of expereinced people loyal to her already.

"Quite right. After all, what is a speech but a demonstration of the speaker's mastery of one or multiple topics, and her ability to persuade others of the merits of her position?"

That's what a good extemporaneous speech is. A good teleprompter speech just proves you've got good scriptwriters, and no social phobia or speech impediment. I suggest you refer back to what Democrats used to say about Reagan's speech making skills.

Oh, and doesn't working on a commercial fishing boat up around Alaska count as "extreme stress"?

I'm going to be voting for Barr, because McCain's anti-1st amendment stance is just too much to swallow, but I must say that if he gets elected, and immediately drops dead, I'll view Palin as a probable improvement over Bush.

"Have another peanut butter cookie. Guaranteed to turn anyone into a rabid Pandagonian feminist."

If I'm already a feminist, can I still get a cookie?

"MLK was a greater speaker than Obama, but I don't know if he would have been a great president."

Probably not

"A good teleprompter speech just proves you've got good scriptwriters"

Read Obama's books, Brett, and tell me they were ghost-written, and that the man can't write.

I guess the reason Democrats fall for R ruses so often is that the ruses depend upon us being thoughtful, reasonable people who mull things over carefully.

The ruse in this case is to get us all to keep palin in the news and to keep discussing her experince by comparing her to Obama. After awhile the low information voter will become familiar with her and think that she has experience at least equal to Obama's since that's who she is bing compared to.

So stop playing the R game and stop comparing her to Obama.

In stead compare her to previous VP picks (she has less experince of any knid than any VP since 1908)

Or better yet, talk abut the truly awful raids being conducted all over Minnesatoa and what those raids signify about the way Republicans govern,

If I point out that X isn't really evidence of Y, your producing Z to prove Y doesn't refute me. You thought I was denying Y, when I was denying that X proved Y.

Yes, the guy can write. He can speak well, too, if he's saying something that was written in advance. None of this demonstrates a capacity to think on his feet, which is a different virtue from being able to think on your seat.

I don't hold it against people that they're incapable of good extemporaneous speaking performances. Last time *I* got roped into one of those, my teeth started chattering so hard I chipped one...

The problem with Obama, aside from his absolutely atrocious policy preferences, is that I really don't think a career of talking and writing qualifies one for a job as a decision maker. I bet he'd be a first class cabinet member, though.

See? he whole point of the Is she experienced?" scam is to get the conversation over to being about Obama.

I don't think that it is necessary to defend Obama. He doesn't need i.

Sarah Palin hasn' got a career of thinking or speaking or anything else. She had a brief stint as mayor of a small ime during which she fired competent people for spiteful reasons and mismanaged the budget. She's been governor for less than two years and has spent the time shifting pork barrel funds around in order tomake her re cord look a little better, engaging in another spite firing, and lhying about both activities.

All of which maked her HIGHLY qualified to be a Republican.

a career of talking and writing

which, as you must know, is not what Obama's career has been.

Pawlenty is done as governor due to term limits

We don't have term limits in Minnesota, actually, though T-Paw may well decide not to run in 2010.

Yes, the guy can write. He can speak well, too, if he's saying something that was written in advance. None of this demonstrates a capacity to think on his feet, which is a different virtue from being able to think on your seat.

Brett, supporting Bob Barr because he presumably feel that Barr is taking stands on long term problems that Brett feel can't be solved by the entrenched parties, now demands that Obama 'think on his feet'. But don't worry, Brett thinks that Obama is talented enough for a cabinet post. Why do I read this and think of Al Campanis?

I support Bob Barr because a vote for Barr doesn't send the message of apathy not voting for anyone would send. If he had a chance in hell of being elected, I might be voting for Mickey Mouse.

I don't demand that Obama do anything. His horrible policy positions are reason enough for me to not vote for him even if he were otherwise as miraculously fit for the office as Democrats insist. The same for McCain, though I find him marginally less loathsome. Not less enough, though.

Does it seem that I rail more against Obama than McCain, and defend Palin more than Biden? Sure: This is a liberal site, and I'm arguing with you.

No, it seems that you hold Obama to standards that are contradictory to the standards that you hold other candidates to and you don't understand the ramifications of your arguments. If you want to discuss why Obama's policy positions are so problematic, I'd be happy for you to do so. But it sounds like you are claiming that a reason you aren't voting for Obama is that he can't think on his feet, which, sounds precisely like Campanis saying that blacks don't have the necessities to manage a major league baseball team. (I'd also note that I accept Campanis' later explanations that he was fatigued and didn't realize what he was saying on the broadcast. The important take-away is that he didn't realize.)

I'd note that Libertarian support, at 6% nationwide and in double digits in some states according to some sources, seems predicated on precisely this viewpoint. If that keeps McCain out of the White House, great, but I would prefer that people be honest with the ramifications of what they say. We liberals can be funny like that.

Is it possible to revoke Ramesh Ponnuru's pundit license for embarrassing levels of innumeracy?

"But it sounds like you are claiming that a reason you aren't voting for Obama is that he can't think on his feet,"

I actually do think that's a good quality in an executive, if you don't relish that deer in the headlights look when a crisis comes along. I'm not sure it's entirely indispensable, though, given that the President isn't running the entire government by himself.

"sounds precisely like Campanis saying that blacks don't have the necessities to manage a major league baseball team."

For infinitesimal values of "precisely like", I suppose it does. The homeopathic theory of racist rhetoric, we could call that: As actual racist terminology becomes more and more dilute, the underlying racism becomes more powerful.

I think you could listen to a person who rejects Obama recite the phone book, and it would sound exactly like Bull Connor. Says more about your perceptions than reality.

I actually do think that's a good quality in an executive,

versus

The problem with Obama, aside from his absolutely atrocious policy preferences, is that I really don't think a career of talking and writing qualifies one for a job as a decision maker. I bet he'd be a first class cabinet member, though.

Seems to say more about your writing than my perceptions. I don't think you are Bull Conner, I think you are just confused like Campanis and haven't examined your own preconceptions.

"Read Obama's books, Brett, and tell me they were ghost-written, and that the man can't write."

Backing up what Gary said, it was fairly widely reported that Obama pretty much locked himself in a hotel room and wrote his acceptance speech.

Amazing stuff in modern-day politics, really.


I think the point can be made more concisely thus:

My mother served for five years as the treasurer of the Woden Valley youth soccer club. So she clearly she has "financial experience" and can now be appointed head of the federal reserve.

Citing six years as mayor of Wusilla, pop. 6,500, as "executive experience" qualifying you for the vice presidency is absurd resume padding. It is comical. It is patently obvious Sarah Palin is an affirmative action hire with no meaningful experience whatsoever.

Even the republicans know this deep in their heart, which is why they have gotten so shrill in the past couple of days. The weaker the ground a republican finds himself on, the more boisterous, bloviating, and vociferous will be his opinion, and the louder will be his denunciations of the other side. You can tell when republicans are taking hits by the volume, in other words.

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