Thursday, September 04, 2008

Politics and Gender

I've been avoiding politics like the plague this year, but everyone keeps talking about Sarah Palin. Of course, those in the know are now talking about Jon Stewart talking about Sarah Palin:

This made me laugh. But this made me think:

I don't care about how Sarah Palin or John McCain take care of their families. I care about how their policy choices affect my family and millions of other Americans.

McCain and Palin get their health insurance paid for by the government (hers in Alaska and his in Washington). Yet they oppose giving the nearly 46 million uninsured Americans the same access to affordable health care.

John McCain's kids don't have to worry about paying for college. Yet he has opposed every single education support program to help others.

McCain and Palin say they will stand up to oil companies. Yet the only energy policy they support gives millions of dollars in tax breaks to oil companies to do more drilling and he has opposed every piece of federal legislation to explore alternative fuel sources.

McCain and Palin say they will revamp how Washington does business. Yet his campaign is filled with lobbyists and she has cooperated with Sen. Ted Stevens in funneling federal money for useless projects in Alaska for years. And McCain and Palin have no solutions for Americans worrying about their jobs in a fragile economy.

McCain and Palin want us to leave their families alone. Yet they want to make rules for our families by eliminating our right to make our own choices over abortion, eliminate our access to family planning education or domestic partner benefits, and our freedom from discrimination.

They want to control what our kids learn in school about sex and about science. In short, through the policies they promote and the judges they support, they want the government to have more control over our private lives than at any time in history.

McCain and Palin now say their campaign is about change, too. Yet the only real change they have proposed is a change from a suit to a skirt in the vice president's office and one man fighting a misplaced war for another in the Oval Office.

Ms. Rosen is absolutely right: Talking about Sarah Palin's family or debating about how much experience is enough is a waste of time. It's the policies that matter. And, for the record, there wasn't a lot of that in any of the speeches this week.


Anonymous said...

I don't care if you put lipstick on a viscious right wing pitbull or if that same pitbull has a pretty face and nice legs; that pitbull still scares the hell out of me.

dara said...

Any woman who is voting for Sarah Palin just because of that fact deserves to have her voting rights taken away. Same goes for anyone who has made up their mind about Obama based merely on his race. Those things are superficial; it's the policies that they stand for that make all the difference.

Listening to McCain speak last night, I was very shocked by how different he seems from the 2000 primary version. He might fancy himself a moderate or a maverick, but in the last 8 years, he has certainly steered himself much closer towards the more conservative elements of his party.

Colleen Snell said...

I think I learned more from your post than I have in two weeks of conventions.

Sara said...

Thank you for this post. People have been so swept up in the emotion of the election they have lost sight of what their core values may be. For me, it is about education and health care. How anyone with children or with out can sleep at night knowing there are families suffering because they don't have the means or access to health care is beyond me. It is barbaric and disgusting.

mad said...

After reading that, makes you kind of wonder why they're even running.

matt said...

RE: McCain 2000 vs. McCain 2008... I'm sure you've already seen it, but if not make sure to check out the Daily Show's McCain biography movie from Friday night.

It's a shame really, McCain in 2000 was someone that I thought very strongly about supporting if he made it to the general election. Now he's being driven by the same political forces that have made these last 8 years such a clusterfuck.

dara said...

Colleen: I think the key to staying informed is reading a lot. Because otherwise, all you get is soundbites, campaign ads, and prepackaged speeches.

Sara: Health care is yet another of my pet issues. And you're right about the barbarism -- it's unfathomable. I don't care if it's government-run or private, but health care needs to be available to everyone, equally, regardless of income bracket.

Mad: People are free to disagree. But I agree with the way that the issues were framed -- in both pieces.

Matt: Funny you should mention that, because I was watching the clip on TV when I read your comment. The Daily Show is spot-on, as always. I hope they win an Emmy.