Sarah Palin Vetted?

During the Republican primaries I was thinking “You know, if McCain wins the nomination and ends up winning the election, it’ll be OK. He’s not completely batshit insane, certainly compared to the Bush White House. So if it happens, I’ll be OK with it.” I was always going to vote Democrat, of course, but wasn’t massively worried about McCain.

I have now completely changed my mind. With this whole Sarah Palin thing, McCain has shown that he is clearly chaotic and dangerous. He should not be in charge of a country which has so very much at stake. America has a chance to step out of the darkness, a chance to wake-up, a chance to join this wonderful world we live in. This will NOT happen with McCain in the White House. If he puts so very little thought into who he chooses as his running mate – the person who could end up being the Vice President of the country for 4 whole years- what amount of contemplation will go into, say, starting another bloody war?

It’s clear now that the McCain camp more-or-less tossed a coin when it came to choosing a Vice-Presidential running mate. McCain spoke to her once on the phone and once in person the day he offered her the job.

“Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was not subjected to a lengthy in-person background interview with the head of Sen. John McCain’s vice presidential vetting team until last Wednesday in Arizona, the day before McCain asked her to be his running mate, and she did not disclose the fact that her 17-year-old daughter was pregnant until that meeting, two knowledgeable McCain officials acknowledged Tuesday.”

She had ALREADY been given a lengthy questionnaire which asked for information on ‘personal matters’, but she didn’t feel it appropriate to mention that her 17-year-old daughter was pregnant in that questionnaire. She waited until Wednesday, the day before they offered her the job, to let them know that. She had informed them about her husband’s DUI and McCain aides say they had already found out about the ethics investigation she’s under in Alaska (you’d think the Republicans would have had enough of those for a while).

One of McCain’s advisors said, clearly using this week’s Acceptable Republican Terminology (in italics): “We made a political determination that the American people would not object to a female candidate with a 17-year-old daughter who was pregnant. We believed that parents all over America would understand that life happens (my emphasis). The team made a recommendation to the senator that these issues were not disqualifying.”

“Life happens”. Hmmmm. Now, in normal language that would read “mistakes happen”. You know, the condom breaks, she forgot to take a Pill, he didn’t pull out in time, they weren’t given adequate sex education to understand how to prevent themselves from getting pregnant, their parents either never talked to them about birth control or forbade them from using it. You know, those kinds of mistakes.

BUT… because last spring when Obama used the word ‘mistake’ when talking about sex education the Republican Machine took the quote out of context and said that he was talking about abortion. Well, of course, they can’t use the word ‘mistake’… so what do they do instead? Use a completely ridiculous sounding sentence- “America would understand that life happens” (when you’re busy making other plans) – with that good ole Manchurian Candidate-like trigger word ‘LIFE’ which wakes up this crowd of Bible-thumping zombies hiding out in the backwoods.

Speaking of Bible-thumping zombies, this is Sarah Palin at her church. it’s about 14 minutes long, if you don’t have the time to watch it all, let me just tell you that at one point she says that she thinks the War in Iraq is ‘God’s will’ and that God wants drilling for oil in Alaska’s 20 million acre wildlife refuge. Seriously.

20 Responses to “Sarah Palin Vetted?”
  1. James says:

    I know the republican political machine is being hypocritical, but I still don’t gather what the major problem is. Her teenage daughter had a baby, and what? Given the scrutiny Palin is under, I can’t blame her for not mentioning at the door, ‘oh by the way, my teenager daughter is pregnant.’ I’d hate for my, er, family planning to be discussed at any job interview my parents went to.

    Have you ever considered the possibility that her daughter wanted a baby? What’s the big thing about having a baby inside a marriage anyway*? Her daughter is not her, she may hold different values and I think that’s a good thing personally. It represents a real ”life” family. Okay, the father has apparently wimped out, but it’s still early days.

    I’m sorry I just don’t see the bum decision that McCain is supposed to have made. Was he to reject Palin because she had decided not to give a complete family history on her application? He checked her CV and campaign record and decided she was for him and booked her. No interview needed I say. Although, you can’t help but wonder if he was deliberately seeking a woman…any woman.

    *Why get married at all if you don’t believe in God….

  2. Emily says:

    I…agree completely. Even though I’m too young to vote I liked McCain before he made that choice.
    /short, boring comment is short and boring.

  3. giagia says:

    James, don’t be a retard. I’m getting seriously tired of it.

    She – and other Republicans- have been trying to get sex education banned, access to contraception banned and abortion banned. Now, I will try and get this into your clearly thick skull once again, I don’t care what anyone chooses to do for themselves, I *DO* care when people try and take away other people’s choices.

    Teen pregnancy is a big issue in the States – they’ve got double the teen pregnancy rate than the UK (which has the highest rate in Europe). 25% of teenagers having sex get an STD. The Christian Reich have been cutting funding for sex education for years now. Bush has funded abstinence-only education- even in Africa (he cut funding to provide condoms and insisted on abstinence-only education in the country w an insane AIDS epidemic). USING a pregnant teenage daughter as an ELECTION ISSUE goes against all the judgmental ‘family values’ bullshit they go on about.

    If McCain/Palin gets voted in, it won’t be too different from this in the White House. ;)

  4. Geoff Coupe says:

    Gia, thanks. That needed to be said. And while we’re at it, what’s with this “Why get married at all, if you don’t believe in God…” nonsense from James? To paraphrase Tina Turner, “what’s God got to do with it?”

  5. giagia says:

    Geoff, don’t listen to James, he’s a British student who clearly thinks mere contradiction is ‘an argument’. At some point, I’m sure he’ll learn how to actually make a point. *sigh*

  6. Rob says:

    Gia, I watched Palin’s convention speech last night and I was sick to my stomach. The GOP mouthpieces have been on all the cable news programs all week telling the media to stop using Palin’s children for political reasons, then during her speech she used them for political purposes…it really made me queasy.

    Palin reminded me of a more attractive, slightly more intelligent Dumbgirl. She may have re-energized the Republican Religious Right but she also re-energized those of us who don’t want the federal government legislating based on some twisted version of Christianity. Just thinking about Palin being a 72-year-old heartbeat away from the presidency makes me scared.

  7. James says:

    Geoff, check back over some of the Gia’s recent posts. You’ll see that Gia has a particular hatred for God and religion. I’ve been trying to merely point to her that not ALL religious individuals in this world are crazed lunatics intent on blowing us up. Apparently, this justifies personal attacks against myself.

    I’m not sure I like the title ‘British Student’. I’m studying for a maths PhD yes, but I’m the least patriotic person you can meet.

  8. James says:

    Oh I see Brian is on the telly right now. I’m off to watch that.

  9. giagia says:

    James, I said ‘British’ because I’m assuming you are British, you’ve got a email address and your IP address shows you are in the UK. I’m currently getting an extra thousand people a day coming here to read Palin stuff from the States. I was pointing out that you, as a non-American voter, might be talking out of your arse because you don’t actually understand the issues or what’s at stake.


    Spend some time on Free Republic (Google it), spend some time reading what IdiotGirl has to say… These are mentally ILL people and the Republican Elite are LYING to them by simply throwing in words like ‘God’ ‘Life’ ‘Faith’ every once in a while which they lap up like brainwashed robots. Really watch that clip I linked to there. It’s a comedy show, but it doesn’t make me want to laugh.

    Again, so it might this time sink in – come on, a Maths PhD, you’ve clearly got a brain in there, don’t you? – I don’t care at ALL what someone thinks or believes, I DO CARE ENORMOUSLY if they try to force me to live by their own personal beliefs. That is not what a Democracy is built on AT ALL.

    Now, if you want to talk theology we can cut out ALL the crap and get down to the ‘show me the proof of God’ stuff. Prove it. If there is not proof, then it’s all in people’s heads and is personal and private to them. They should keep it that way. It’s not real.

    Name me a noble action or noble thought by a believer in God that could NOT be performed by a non-believer.

    Name a wicked action or a wicked thing said by someone purely because of their religious faith.” – Hitchens

    I can think of a couple I’ve heard right away:
    “Gays are an abomination and should be eliminated because it says so in the Bible”
    “God’s will is for us to go and fight a war in Iraq for as long as it takes for them to find Jesus”
    “Atheists are not citizens”

    Then there are the suicide bombers for Allah, beheadings for not believing in the religion anymore, being stoned to death for dating someone of a different religion…

    Shall I go on?

    Go talk with DumbGirl for a while (linked above). Go on.

  10. Geoff Coupe says:

    James, I see that Gia has let you have it with both barrels above, and I must say I can understand her frustration. Here’s my two-cents on your statement that Gia “has a particular hatred for God and religion”.

    It’s always struck me as a bit odd when atheists are claimed to “have a hatred for God”. Since, by definition, we lack belief in a god or gods, how can we have a “hatred” for an imaginary being? Now, as to “hatred for religion”, I would concede that some varieties of religion produce results that I have little stomach for (Gia gives some examples above), and indeed, I detest such results, but “hatred” doesn’t seem appropriate as the descriptor of my emotion.

    Look at it this way – here’s a somewhat shaky analogy. I happen to think that religions are the emergent properties of the working of the human mind. Just as a Petri dish acts as a medium to encourage the growth of bacteria, so the medium of the human mind (and collectively, the minds of the social species that we are) encourages the growth and evolution of religions. Now, just like bacteria, some religions are beneficial, and some are dangerous. I approach religions in the same way as I approach bacteria; with no concerns for the beneficial ones, and with disinfectant for the more virulent strains. But saying that I have a “hatred” for the dangerous bacteria/religions doesn’t seem to be the right term. I have a healthy respect for the dangers they pose, and approach with caution and protective clothing while wielding my can of bleach.

  11. giagia says:

    Geoff- exactly. Saying that I “hate God” is the same as saying I hate “spicy tree shoes.” It’s completely nonsensical.

    And I really like your bacteria analogy. :)

    See, a LOT of British people don’t get the extremely serious dangers of creeping religiosity. Judging by the personal beliefs of the people ‘at the top’, the Church of England is more or less just a place to get dressed up in silly clothes, talk a bit, then have some tea and cake. It’s EASY to, like your harmless bacteria, have no concerns about that.

    The problem is, of course, that because the C of E in the country has been like that for so long, the far more dangerous branches of religion have been allowed to thrive. Yet still way too many people have the exact same lack of concern about the massive fundamentalist churches and the lean towards extremism in Islam that have popped up here…

    If this attitude continues here then the UK will definitely be facing the same kinds of issues plaguing the States in 10-15 years time.

  12. James says:

    OK, correction. The word ‘God’ can be removed from my statement to leave, ‘Gia has a particular hatred for religion’. It doesn’t really matter.

    Geoff, I am not denying that as belief systems, religions can be dangerous. Clearly, certain religious *practices* will be either to the benefit or detriment of society (from your perspective anyway). Also of course, many religious practices have no impact on society whatsoever. Your attitude towards religion is one I entirely support. I might add however, that rather than having no concern for beneficial religions, we should in fact encourage them to grow. Maybe the way to erode negative religious beliefs is to simply starve them of “Petri dish” by boosting the growth of positive beliefs?

    Anyway, the argument I have been putting forward to Gia was a different one. Why do some hold a special reserve of disdain for those who believe in God? If it is not hatred, then it is certainly bias. Gia has said herself, for example, that she pities ALL people who have found God because they are deluding themselves. She has said that the only way she could conceive of her husband or son finding God is if they became brain damaged. There is just a detectable air amongst some atheists that religious individuals, regardless of their particular beliefs or attitudes, are not to be trusted with anything. That they *will* try and force their unreasonable and deluded beliefs on society. It’s almost as if theists are sub-human in the eyes of some atheists. It all sounds rather ugly anyway.

    Gia, how you can say that UK is unaware of the various dangerous branches of religion with the troubles that happened in Northern Ireland and which spread into mainland Britain is beyond me. You might even say that the UK is uniquely experienced with regard to religious conflicts in that it has actually managed to resolve one.

    America is ran by a religious establishment, whoop de fucking do. Britain has been been run by establishments of various sorts for years. The religious right in America is rich, rich establishments pull strings, it’s hardly the find of the century is it? Oh and I also, “*DO* care when people try and take away other people’s choices.” It’s not exactly hard is it, even if you have a thick skull like mine.

  13. giagia says:

    James, this was just emailed to me. Read it. You’ll get a good idea of the kind of ‘religious establishment’ there is in the States.

  14. James says:

    Hmmm, maybe I am forgetting just how inbred some Americans are. But what you going to when the you have families like the Bush family hoarding all that wealth?

    I guess I can see your argument that I am writing as a Briton whilst you are writing as an American. My exposure to religious individuals has been entirely positive, particularly with regard to my girlfriend’s Jehovah’s witness family (an ‘American’ religion?). Every religious individual I have ever known has been well reasoned, friendly and ultimately approachable.

    I’m not so sure however that the UK is heading towards the same type of issues the US is currently facing. The history of the UK and its resultant culture is just too different. No, I think the reverse is going to happen; the US is heading for a modern day reformation. Maybe this change will start with Obama and his opposition to the Iraq war as well as his more open (and reasonable) views on religion. He may even undo most of Bush’s ‘work’ (hopefully). Then again, maybe not. Either way, I’ve got £20 riding on him at 4:1, so I’m a big supporter.

  15. Geoff Coupe says:

    “Every religious individual I have ever known has been well reasoned, friendly and ultimately approachable”. At the risk of being seen as flippant, maybe you need to get out a bit more… And yes, I know it’s hearsay, but imagine that with McCain’s age and health issues, there is a real possibility that Palin ends up as President of the US, and this is what we get:“racist-sexist-vindictive-and-mean”/

  16. It was Ronald Reagan who let the lunatics out of the asylum and into the White House. They enjoyed the taste of power and now think they have a God-given right to exercise it. The medieval mentality and intolerance of the extreme right of the Republican Party is positively frightening.

    In her latest column, Ann Coulter — in another country and at another time, she would have ended up on the gallows at Nuremberg jail — writes that the appointment of Palin gave Republicans a reason to vote for McCain, a reason other than Barack Obama.

    My take on McCain’s choice of Palin can be found at

    As an example of day-to-day Republican intolerance, check out

  17. Alex says:

    Even FOX is on to Palin’s lies. See Chris Wallace fact-check Palin’s rewriting history (her record):

    The problem with the GOP is that they need votes from stupid rednecks, racists, and chrsitian fundamentalists to stay in power. It’s not that they lack smart leaders or good ideas…it’s the whole democracy thing that gets in their way. So beyond the real GOP’ers, they have to lie and cheat to get votes from the masses. Good thing that most of the “masses” are too stupid to think on their own.

    It’s not that different from now the Democrats work. They have their elites but also need votes too…they tend to go after the pseudointellectuals and stupid liberals.

  18. Adam Higgs-Boson says:

    Jeez! The Desperate Housewife crossed with The God Squad. Scary!!!

    As to why this Brit is concerned about what’s going on in the U.S. right now, well, as Horace said: Nam tua res agitur, paries cum proximus. [No, it isn’t rude.]

    Re: gays being an abomination because ‘The Good Book’ says so.
    Well, I can cherry-pick too! The Bible *supports* gay relationships.

    Try I Samuel Ch 18 – “the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David […] Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul.”

    Then try II Samuel Ch 1 – “Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love was wonderful, passing the love of women.”

    Now I could be wrong here, but isn’t marriage a covenant?

    And the second one doesn’t sound strictly heterosexual to me…

  19. giagia says:

    Adam Higgs-Boson – There’s also the whole Ruth and Naomi lesbo thing and Jesus saying that ‘natural eunuchs’ are not required to marry a woman…. God *loves* the gays!

  20. Maybe the apparently less-than-fully-evidence-based consideration and selection of Ms Palin goes with the similarly based position re: creationism / ‘intelligent’ design?

    Which, if true, is on both counts rather sad in the country which prides itself with considerable justice on its technological and scientific (if not sustainable) achievements.