Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Lipstick on pigs and other crap

I am insulted. If you have a brain, you should be too. The McCain-Palin campaign and much of the media thinks you do not know what metaphors and maxims are. What is more, they think you will overlook your concerns about the economy, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, access to health care, and education to weigh in on the bickering about pigs in lipstick.

Anyone with a grandmother and/or half-teaspoon of common sense, and who heard Senator Obama's phrasing for themselves, did not for a second think he called anyone a pig. Yet for the next several news cycles, anchors and experts debated whether the campaign had taken a bitter turn, and whether Senator Obama had started to play dirty. Republican talking heads attempted to use the comment that was never made to contrive a conversation about chauvinism that does not exist, to make Governor Palin a pseudo-victim.

News editors rely on press releases and access to newsmakers for their bread and butter, and in such a contested election year I imagine they want to stay friendly with all sides. I get that. I do not, believe, however that every press release or phone call should be rewarded with a lead-in on the evening news. I hope for integrity sake, that some editor at a television or print outlet somewhere in the country saw this news item and decided not to run it. The discussion had no merit and by the second iteration of the news piece, it had no sincerity. It took away from what voters want and need to hear: the candidates stand on matters that affect our daily lives.

On Monday morning the story running the news cycles, between recovery efforts in Texas and the California train crash, is McCain's accusations that Senator Obama showed disregard for the those suffering through Hurricane Ike. What warranted this charge? In a campaign speech on Friday, Obama warned that the McCain-Palin campaign would try to undermine supporters' trust and change the conversation from the issues. I suppose the McCain-Palin campaign felt compelled to prove Obama right.

It is no wonder that with these tactics, Senator McCain and Gov. Palin raised $20 million less than Senator Obama over the last month. More people are realizing that the Republican ticket has nothing more than a zeal to win. They cannot win on the issues, so they try to occupy airspace with tangential conversations. They have no new ideas to deliver, so they mock Obama's oration. They do not have a strong foundation of service to others, so they criticize Obama's commitment to his community. They have no strategic plan for improving the condition of Americans, so they say vote for us because we are a war hero (read former prisoner of war) and a lady governor. Thanks to the McCain campaign, I am more sure than ever about who deserves my vote.

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