Friday, August 29, 2008

Blood in the Water

Sarah Palin is officially McCain's choice for running mate and Vice President.

I'm still learning about Palin but so far everything I've read I like. Politics set aside, the overwhelming positive for McCain/Palin is that she really is America. Palin has had to juggle career and family while married to a blue collar worker, with five kids, and one son going off to Iraq next month.

I suspected McCain would pick someone on the outside as a running mate in true maverick form, looking to distance himself from Washington.

What I didn’t suspect was how Democrats would react to this choice.

Instead of being hung over from the intoxicating speech Barack Obama gave last night at Invesco, liberals are absolutely fuming over this pick. It has completely distracted them from the victory they so surely predicted and had already started enjoying. I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard “landslide” from liberal co-workers/friends only to see them in complete panic mode this morning.

The race is back on and getting ugly!

Here’s a sample of an exchange I just had at work…

LIBERAL COWORKER (nearly screaming): “…and she was mayor of a town with only 9,000 people!!! How can she in anyway be experienced?”

ME: “Well you should be happy then since she’ll be easy to attack, right? And your guy already won, so why does the losing team’s VP pick bother you?”

LIBERAL COWORKER: “Because she could be the next VP!”

Ouch. I could feel the pain of that realization from two cubicles away!

The biggest irony is that Democrats will have to attack Palin with two issues equally challenging for Obama…

1. Lack of experience
2. Demographics (with Obama race, with Palin gender)

This is going to be interesting!

Friday, August 1, 2008

The Emergency Plan

Still reading through Obama's newly announced emergency economic plan. The plan creates a second stimulus payment to individual workers/families, but instead of taking money from the Treasury the money would be taken oil profit "windfalls."

I know the conservative reaction, I've read it. I find myself having mixed feelings about this one. It's really hard to continue to support the free market in light of the disparities between the consumer and the oil companies.

Conservatives will blame Americans for destroying the free market by supporting populist (socialist) candidates who in turn pander to the electorate with such measures. But to what degree is corporate America (not just the oil companies) responsible for the decline of economic freedom in this country?

It's getting really hard to support the corporations, many of whom pay their CEOs $MMs while laying off middle class employees. Brokerage firms/banks who have destroyed the life savings of so many while those at the top ride the golden parachute back down to earth. Then there's the Qwests, Enrons, Worldcoms, Tycos of the world who took the above to a new level with cooked books--as if playing by the rules didn't offer enough of an advantage.

I've noted before that with freedom, individuals have to accept negative consequences. So do corporations.

Corporate America had the freedom to do the right thing by the American people; decent pay/benefits for employees, keep price of commodities (energy) low, help low income customers. Instead, those companies have pushed the markets to the brink, even when it was against their own long-term interests to do so.

Americans have abandoned their ability to create change as individuals (as an employee or a consumer) and will instead made appeal after appeal to government for action. Our future is certainly filled with such grand "plans" until corporate America stops mistreating it's employees and gouging it's consumers.