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Discussion Starter #1
A "bombshell?"

A pregnant teen from a small town.

Where have these people been? A true media "bombshell" would be the discovery of a small town in North America where teens are keeping their hands off each other.

Good grief.

Yet Bristol Palin's swelling belly seems to have captivated Washington - and St. Paul, Minn., where the Republican Party has gathered to weather two storms, first Gustav and now Bristol, the 17-year-old daughter of vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin - like nothing since Bill Clinton, Monica Lewinsky and the blue dress she neglected to send to the cleaner.

The experts turned out to be wrong about Clinton, of course: He didn't have to resign, didn't become a lame-duck president - and his popularity held at numbers that today's candidates for president may never reach.

Those experts are now saying the John McCain-Sarah Palin "family values" pitch is sadly out of tune, but is it? The media presumption has always been that "family values" are all about going to church and putting up picket fences and being there for the birthday parties, but they are also about being there for the flip side of family life.

And in this instance Sarah and Todd Palin seem to be giving pretty good value. They can't be particularly pleased by events, but you can't always control events any more than you can control weather systems building in the Gulf of Mexico - so you deal with it best you can.

One New York paper has shouted its discovery that the father, 18-year-old Levi Johnston, is a grinding hockey player back in little Wasilla, Alaska, who happily calls himself a "****ing *******" on a website and was nailed a year ago for catching king salmon out of season.

It all fits rather nicely, of course, with the huntin'-'n'-fishin' candidate herself, the small town mayor who doesn't care for gun control or abortion and thinks maybe the Bible got it right when it named Adam and Eve the first politicians ever to break a promise.

They talk about the gender gap and the income gap, but you hear precious little about the rural-urban gap because, well, all of the talking tends to happen on the urban side of the ledger and, frankly, they don't really think too often, or all that much, about the increasingly distant rural side.

To most of the established press corps, whether established in Washington or New York or, for that matter, Toronto, the mere mention of guns is an instant connection to violence, often coupled with madness, so how could a gun-totin' former beauty queen possibly connect with the modern world?

Well, in many places she does. In fact, if certain members of the Washington press corps were reassigned after the 2008 Presidential Election to, say, Alaska, their view of guns might change overnight with the first snort coming from the backyard.

It is simply patronizing to suggest that a young woman from Alaska is somehow not up to the challenge because her only real experience is being mayor of a pitiable small town of less than 7,000.

Well, let's examine that for a moment. We have, on the Democratic side, Barack Obama for president, who went from Harvard Law School to community work to the Illinois State Senate in his mid-30s. We have Joe Biden for vice-president, who barely made the minimum-age cut, 30, when he reached the U.S. Senate.

As for the "most experienced" candidate in the race, 72-year-old John McCain, Ms. Palin's running mate, graduated from the Naval Academy, joined the navy, was captured in Vietnam, returned and jumped straight into politics as a U.S. senator.

It's a fair question to ask: Exactly who has the most experience with real people facing real issues - a two-term mayor of a small northern community or a bunch of guys who've been surrounded by staff for so long they don't even know where their coats are hung?

Ms. Palin is so easy to dismiss. Inexperienced. A pregnant daughter (who would have known better than anyone that her stomach would be noticed, since apparently everyone back in Wasilla knew and, besides, early pregnancies are hardly novel in the north). A husband who long ago got nailed for driving under the influence - absolutely inexcusable, of course, but again hardly unique in small northern places where the idea of calling a cab often doesn't even occur.

Ms. Palin - regardless of what one thinks of her politics - is up against a growing media bias against things that are small and distant.

In Canada, the media even plays into it, by endlessly picking up the out-of-date Statistics Canada definition of "urban" - any place of 1,000 or more population - and making an instant leap from "urban" to "city" to claim that 80 per cent of Canadians live in cities.

Not even close.

True enough, marginally more Canadians live in real cities than in the rest of the country, but for any politician or commentator to presume that the only ones who count are those who don't live in places like Wasilla, Alaska, is missing the essential point of democracy.

One person, one vote.


Premium Member
4,479 Posts
The dims crack me up sometimes. Their double standards and backwards thinking can be hilarious.

With one breath "we want change" "McCain has been in Washington too long to change."

They adore obama, who has been a senator for only three years and spent 1.5 of those running for the presidency... and he isn't running for VP. Yet they attack Palin because of her experience. It really is laughable sometimes.

As for her daughter, they act like it was Sarah who got preggo at 17. I'll show you what I mean. I have a friend who lives in Germany. He left wing all the way so we joust with each other regularly for fun. He thinks Bill Clinton hung the moon and can't imagine ever owning a gun. But he is a really smart guy otherwise. He teaches programming and knocks down a couple hundred grand a year and travels the world.

He emailed me this morning about Sarah... you gotta read this... remember this is a learned man and very logical... well, on most things anyway. When discusses Republicans he losses it.

Hm. The funny thing about her is that she seems to advocate sexual abstinence and the like, and her 17-year-old daughter is pregnant...
Sure, it is her _kid_, not she herself, but still, it shows what to think about such strict opinions...
1) Bush advocates very strict sex, alcohol and drug policies. While at least with drugs, that may be a good thing, that still didn't seem to concern him when he was younger nor does it seem to concern his daughters very much who were caught numerous times with underaged drinking.
2) Cheney is a big homosexual hater, and his daughter is lesbian.
3) And Palin prays abstinence but cannot seem to get through to her own daughter.
When it comes down to these issues, they are all a bunch of hypocrits, if you ask me.

My grandma was quite conservative, too, when it came down to sex topics, of course largely due to her upbringing during completely different times than today (she was born in 1910, died in 1994). But guess who had an outside-marriage kid.... Ok, that was also during the war, when things really were different (and I am not sure if her husband was somewhere in the battlefield at the time, which I assume), but what I mean is that all too often, when people are too conservative about these issues, what these people say and their actions a lot of times differ significantly.
He has transfered the actions of the children onto the parents.

My reply
I can't call the parents hypocrites because their children don't act the way they do. I don't think that is really fair. Many kids are just naturally rebellious. You seem to be applying the kids actions to the parents. I'm NOT voting for their kids!

I did a lot of things my parents didn't approve of. But do you agree most kids start out with more liberal views and actions and tend to move toward their parents views as they get older? There was a saying/quote I heard a long while back about this very thing, but I can't find it now. One of our founding fathers wrote it I think.

Anyway, I like her views and stance on the issues. She doesn't just say she supports gun ownership, she owns and actively shoots hers. I think that is a requirement for Alaskans. (grin) She is also in favor of drilling in Alaska and along our coasts. This is a good thing since Russia is drilling off the coast of Cuba because we aren't. I agree with her others views as well. I think McCain made a good choice.
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