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By Geoff Metcalf

September 2, 2008

“Important principles may, and must, be inflexible.” --Abraham Lincoln

The selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as the GOP Vice Presidential nominee is brilliant. Strategically and tactically, she is the perfect compliment to Senator John McCain, and “perfect storm” for the perpetually whiny Democrats.

“As a Democrat, I am reeling,” said Camille Paglia, the erstwhile and current cultural critic. “That was the best political speech I have ever seen delivered by an American woman politician. Palin is as tough as nails.”

Democrats will need a chain saw to cut through the hypocrisy this year.

So now we have the party tickets for the ’08 Presidential Wannabes. Buckle up!

Perception versus reality is the challenge in most political theater. Obama has offered form over substance as an art form he has mastered. He is a highly skilled orator, expert at sparking warm and fuzzy feelings. However, demonstrated performance remains (for him) an elusive promise…if or when he is anointed.

In the wake of the usual Cecil de Milleish choreography of the DNC extravaganza in Denver, the GOP has thrown a hard curveball into the process. The announcement that the GOP Vice Presidential pick is Governor Palin has sent shockwaves through the ranks of the chattering class elite (and the DNC).

Governor Palin is way more than just a pretty face or just a political maverick. She is the real deal! Unlike her running mate or their opponents, Palin is the personification of both substance and principles…a for real “doer of deeds”. She has earned a reputation as a tax-cutter and corruption buster and (get this) has demonstrated “…it’s not a question of WHO is right or wrong (partisanship), but WHAT is right or wrong (principles) that counts.” HOOAH!

Democrat surrogates are sniping at her lack of experience (despite Barack’s painfully thin resume). They are dissing her ability to be Commander in Chief (ignoring her Command of the Alaska National Guard for two years). Candidly, Democrats are recycling most of the routine GOP criticisms of Obama. The obvious difference is that Palin is being offered as a complement to the GOP presidential candidate, whereas Obama is the Democrats candidate for President.


If it is possible to set aside partisan rancor for a brief moment and clinically analyze the Strengths/Weaknesses/Opportunities/and Threats of all the candidates, some interesting parallels develop.

1. GOP:

a - McCain brings heavy Senate Experience, Military Experience, Maturity, partisan maverick, and yeah, that POW credential that seems to annoy those who don’t have those scars.
b - Palin is skinny with experience on the national scene; however, she is a bona fide strong partisan maverick, VERY conservative principles, doer of deeds who gets stuff done.
c - Neither McCain nor Palin are partisan hacks. Both have been decried as RINOs. Both have significant accomplishments and compelling personal stories.

2. Dems:

a - Obama lacks experience in Senate, has no executive experience, VERY liberal policies, zero exposure to military. He may be a gifted speaker, but is way thin on demonstrated performance.
b - Biden has heavy senate experience, maturity, partisan sycophant with a propensity for major gaffs. Oddly, he personifies the stereotype of the kind of “change” Obama rails against.

The Ketchikan Daily News recently observed, “Voters will be deciding in the general election whether they prefer an experienced president and less experienced vice president, or what the Democrats offer: a rising star for president and seasoned vice president. It won’t be far from anyone’s mind, either, that McCain is the oldest presidential candidate ever. … There are chinks in her armor. But she has a tendency to just move past them and continue to fight for what she believes in. Palin is energetic.”

Those Republicans who have struggled with “holding their nose and voting for the lesser of available evils” have to be jazzed at the introduction of a for real conservative, who not only talks the talk, but has routinely walked the walk, on matters both political and personal.

Principles matter. Many of my long time readers remain angry I could or would suggest McCain as the solution to Obama mania. I have tried (unsuccessfully) to explain that the republic is in distress because of liberal incrementalism which has consistently eroded our Constitutional gifts. Before we can restore the republic we have to slow and then attrite the liberal gains that challenge us.

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Obama is anathema. Obama/Biden is an abomination. The Democrats offer a team of two rabid liberals. The Republicans offer a team of two principled conservatives of varying intensity.
Herman Melville once wrote, “The grand principles of virtue and honor, however they may be distorted by arbitrary codes, are the same the world over: and where these principles are concerned, the right or wrong of any action appears the same to the uncultivated as to the enlightened mind.”

� 2008 Geoff Metcalf - All Rights Reserved

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"Geoff Metcalf is a nationally syndicated radio talk show host for TALK AMERICA and a veteran media performer. He has had an eclectic professional background covering a wide spectrum of radio, television, magazine, and newspapers. A former Green Beret and retired Army officer he is in great demand as a speaker. Visit Geoff's

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The selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as the GOP Vice Presidential nominee is brilliant. Strategically and tactically, she is the perfect compliment to Senator John McCain, and “perfect storm” for the perpetually whiny Democrats.