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The Palin Vetting Continues

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The radical right wing blogs are predictably complaining and slinging mud at people who pass on stories about McCain's choice for vice president, but that shouldn't change a thing.

Latest: The Washington Post reports she led a 527 founded by indicted-for-corruption Senator Ted Stevens. So much for her being a reformer and maverick.

The current First Lady made some menacing remarks probably aimed at the press, indicating that she wants this VP candidate to be treated specially because she's a woman (that's how I interpret it) but the answer has to be no. If the press has any integrity, after such a challenge, they should go deeper and press harder. We, the electorate, have a right to know everything about this person who would be a 72-to-76 year old heartbeat away from the presidency. Even healthy people who are 76 have medical problems, and McCain hasn't been all that healthy.

I have so much to say about this.

I have had mud slung at me, but the people who sling it have no idea who I am.

I have voted Republican for president, I don't particularly like the Democrats, however if I had been old enough to vote for Kennedy I'm sure I would have (I was five years old when he ran), same with McGovern (I was draft age, even though I wasn't old enough to vote, ironically). I voted for Ford over Carter, and I'll stop there. I'm not proud of my choices in the 80s and 90s, but they have included Republicans. So when partisans smear me as being a liberal Democrat, they show how stupid they are, and how unskilled they are at getting votes. There's absolutely nothing to be gained, although this time around I'm committed to Obama, I'm going to vote for him, and work for him, and give him money. But the Republicans should be thinking of the future, there will be an election in 2012 and 2016, they might want to come back. They should be thinking of building bridges, not burning them.

I don't see how anyone with a conscience, who puts "Country First" can vote for McCain in 2008. But then I don't understand many of my fellow Americans. I don't understand how anyone could have been distracted by issues such as gay marriage or the morality of stem cell research in 2004, but those were deciding issues. The war, global warming, trade, education, health care and economics -- the really important stuff, imho -- those didn't decide the election. For that reason I feel my country deserves what it gets, the world economy is routing around us. We will find out what a privileged position we occupied and will miss it when it's gone, when the world no longer supports our using 25 percent of its energy with less than 5 percent of the population.

We'll miss it when it's gone, but I'll probably be all right, because I have skills that work in the world economy. Many of my fellow Americans do not. I'm willing to sacrifice for them, but are they willing to vote their own interest? The 2008 election is, imho, a referendum on the will and intelligence of the American voter. I sincerely hope we have a strong will and use our god-given intelligence. McCain is giving us every reasonable clue that his presidency will be dumb and bullying and very very Republican. If that's what we choose, it will, sadly, be time to give up on this country, because the world just doesn't care about us that much anymore.

We have to earn the world's respect, we never get to relax, we have to work hard to be competitive, and more importantly, we have to work smart. If the tables were turned and the Dems were nominating candidates who govern from the gut and don't use their brains, I would be voting Republican this year. If the Republicans want to win, great, put up some candidates who are prepared to lead, who can sit across from other world leaders and command their respect, not just fear. It was never a good idea to push fear over respect, but right now I don't think they're all that scared of us.