Tag Archive for 'sarah-palin'

The GOP’s Uninspiring Presidential Candidates

Published February 21st, 2011 by tcarpenter

I had the misfortune of catching Mike Huckabee’s interview today on ABC’s Good Morning America.  When asked about his presidential ambitions for 2012, the former Arkansas governor was cautious, arguing that President Obama would be a formidable candidate.  Huckabee then stated that since 1848, only one incumbent president, Jimmy Carter, had ever been defeated for re-election.

Well, he was almost right.  Except for George H.W. “Poppy” Bush losing to Bill Clinton in 1992.  And Herbert Hoover being defeated by Franklin Roosevelt in 1932.  And William Howard Taft losing in 1912.  And Grover Cleveland coming up short in 1888.  And Benjamin Harrison being ousted from the White House in 1892.

Is it really too much to expect that candidates for the presidency (and let’s remember that Huckabee already ran for the GOP nomination in 2008) know the basics about that office and not make gross factual misstatements on national television?

But one shouldn’t really be surprised.  The probable GOP presidential field for 2012 thus far looks utterly dismal.  The likes of Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney inspire no more confidence than does Mike Huckabee.  And then, of course, we have Sarah Palin, whose degree of ignorance on both civil liberties and foreign policy issues is truly breathtaking.  Her most recent gaffe occurred when she was asked about the mounting anti-regime demonstrations in the Middle East.  Her answer was so utterly incoherent that it was not even certain she was speaking English.

Please.  The party that produced Abraham Lincoln, Dwight Eisenhower, and Ronald Reagan should be able to do better than this bunch.

Is Sarah Palin Really This Clueless?

Published July 8th, 2010 by tcarpenter

Sarah Palin has already acquired a reputation of being George W. Bush or Dan Quayle in a skirt.  In other words, there is a suspicion that there isn’t a lot of activity between her ears.  Her latest comment on the bloated U.S. “defense” budget won’t dispel those suspicions.

Palin has made it her mission to dissuade Tea Party activists from making the $700 billion military budget a candidate for cuts to reduce the enormous federal budget deficit.  Even though the United States now spends as much on the military as the rest of the world combined, Sarah regards it as shockingly unpatriotic to think that the Pentagon might be able to get by on a mere $500 billion or $600 billion a year.

During a recent speech, she quoted Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, who had questioned the need for some of the U.S. Navy’s expensive weapons systems, including maintaining 12 aircraft carrier battle groups.  Noting that destroyers cost as much as $6 billion each, submarines $7 billion, and aircraft carriers $11 billion, he asked: “Do we really need [even] more strike groups for another 30 years when no other country has more than one?”

It was a very good question that deserved a serious, thoughtful answer.  But what was Palin’s brilliant response?  ” Well, my answer is pretty simple: Yes we can and yes we do, because we must.”

So, no possible enemy that the United States faces–now or in the foreseeable future–can match even a small fraction of our conventional military power, America’s free-riding allies in Europe and East Asia are slashing their already anemic defense budgets (thereby expecting the United States to bear an even greater share of the burden for global order and security), and we’re running a budget deficit of more than $1.4 trillion this year, but we can’t cut even a dime from our military budget.  Right.

The best thing the Tea Party movement could do is to show the door to Sarah Palin and anyone who thinks the way she does.