| Teflon vs. velcro
The GOP puts all its political eggs in the specious attack basket
By Ellen Snortland
Why is it Republicans seem to have a Teflon coating, whereas Democrats have coats of Velcro? Whether the event - real or cooked up - is a sexual indiscretion, tenuous association with someone with an unsavory past or extremist religious views, Democrats seem to get stuck and their GOP counterparts are able to just slip-slide their slimy way through the muck. WHY IS THAT?!
VP hopeful Gov. Sarah Palin is in pit bull attack mode, accusing Sen. Barack Obama of "pallin'" around with terrorists and basically calling him a traitor. I can't help but reflect on Palin's own "skeletons" that seem to slip off her like scrambled eggs in a Teflon pan. Let's review her eggs (that's a joke, son), shall we?
Egg No. 1 - Sexual indiscretions: While I'm disgusted with President Bill Clinton's erotic escapades during his term in the Oval Office, the impeachment proceedings were an obscene over-kill and an overreaction that far outstripped the offense. It was like punching someone for sneezing instead of simply asking the sneezer to cover his or her mouth. Similarly, as disloyal as Sen. John Edwards' extramarital affair with an obvious gold digger was, he paid dearly by dropping out of the primaries and being publicly humiliated. And, oh my goodness! The media had field days with both of these prominent Democratic ganders and their gandering.
Isn't what's good for the gander also good for the goose? There's some smoke comin' from the goose grill in Alaska that Gov. Sarah "loosey goosey" Palin was doin' some Palin "pallin" of her own. The National Enquirer - mainstream journalism's gossipy cousin - has put out a story that she committed adultery with her husband's business partner. While for sure the NE is not my first choice in news, they do occasionally break legitimate stories and have had an impact on mainstream newsgathering. Stand by to see if this story gets picked up by any of the big papers and broadcast news outlets. How much do you want to bet that Palin "slips" by mainstream scrutiny? If she's an unrepentant adulterer, why does she get a pass? Or are her goose eggs golden?
Egg No. 2 - Guilt by association: Chicago nonprofit and political establishment leaders of both parties defend Obama's association with former Weatherman and radical anti-Vietnam activist William Ayers as being completely aboveboard and appropriate. Nonetheless, in ugly innuendo and rotten egg-slinging, Palin uses the Ayers and Obama acquaintance as "proof" of Obama's being in bed with terrorists, figuratively speaking.
OK, here's some unsavory slinging back at ya, doggone it. Everyone pick up a handful of whatever's handy and throw it Sarah's way. What is she doing literally sleeping with an enemy of the US government? Palin's husband, Todd Palin, was a member of the Alaska Independence Party. The AIP is a secessionist group that literally wants Alaska to become its own commonwealth; to do what the Southern states wanted to do before the Civil War. Secession is treason. Alaskan Independence Party founder Joe Voegler, who is also a Palin political mentor, said, "The fires of hell are frozen glaciers compared to my hatred for the American government, and I won't be buried under their damn flag!" Nice association there, Sarah!
While Palin's AIP membership is not clear, there's no question that five kids later she's consorting with a treasonous figure: her husband, an AIP member until 2002. Gee, that "guilt by association" egg just seems to dribble off the VP candidate's face and pan. Why is that?
Egg No. 3 - Extremist religious leaders: OK, OK, while Obama's former pastor, the good Rev. Jeremiah Wright, went a bit overboard for my taste, he's a preacher, not a mediator. Preachers use hyperbole. But Wright's pronouncements stick - Velcro-like - to Obama, regardless of anything the Obama camp says.
In tit-for-tat style, what about Palin's association with an evangelical church that trucks in beliefs that are not only medieval but arguably traitorous? This is NOT mud-slinging, but fact. They pray that witches and warlocks leave them alone; Harry Potter books are considered to be satanic. They pray for the day the US government is taken over for Jesus, stealth-like, if necessary, by born-again Christians who will do away with the Constitution and force their beliefs into every part of our nation and abroad. Please see a chilling documentary that gives you an intimate view of these so-called Christian warriors and the children they are brainwashing. Get a copy of "Jesus Camp" (www.jesuscampthemovie.com) directed beautifully by Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady. This 2006 documentary is a must-see for people who think that religious freedom is safe in this country. These evangelicals are very, very intent on making sure it's their way or the highway. And Sarah Palin is right there with them.
The GOP presidential ticket can't campaign on the issues. How pathetic that they have to sic their junkyard dog on Obama and put all their political eggs in the specious attack basket. The Democrats need to scramble and throw some rotten factual eggs back at them and see if they can make a few stick.
Ellen Snortland teaches a writing workshop in Altadena. Contact her at www.snortland.com.