Thursday, November 6, 2008

John McCain- An American Hero

McCain as a student at the US Naval Academy in...Image via Wikipedia
In the heat of the battle, I think some may have gotten the wrong impression of my impression of John McCain. I want to say this clearly and unequivocally. I think John McCain is a good man, a true American hero and I hope he is remembered as such.

John McCain served his country in Vietnam. He endured torture for us. He has served in Congress for close to 30 years. He has voted his conscience on several issues, bucking his party. I believe that he ran for President not for his own ego but because he truly felt that was the best way he could serve his country during this time.

Like all of us, John McCain is human and has made some mistakes. I believe the mistake he made during the campaign was instead of just being John McCain and going with his gut, he allowed the base and the pundits to turn him into something he was not. I think he was uncomfortable with the level and tone of rhetoric coming out of his campaign and I expect one day he will apologize for that. I understand politics are politics and you have to do what you have to do to get elected. Obama's campaign did things I'm sure he's not proud of too. Unfortunately, though John McCain went too far in the campaign pulling a few "stunts" that simply backfired. I think if he had stayed the course and run on experience and patriotism, we might have had a different result and he might be the President elect.
During the campaign I said things about John McCain that were critical.  I don't think I criticized him unfairly.  I was merely pointing out the differences (and similarities) between the candidates, as I saw them. I was shocked by the lack of judgment he showed at times.  And, I saw a herky-jerky quality in his temperament that was not appealing in a President.  But, I never questioned his patriotism or his character.  It's kind of funny that when I posted some things about him being a socialist or a redistributor that a couple of my readers thought I was "bashing" him.  Not at all.  I was merely pointing out that he actually took the mainstream American approach to taxes which is that a progressive tax is fair and that those who do not pay income tax still deserve relief. 

I was especially moved by John McCain's concession speech on Tuesday evening. It was the John McCain I thought I knew. He seemed as relaxed as he did during the entire campaign. His words flowed like he had the speech down pat. Even during the unscripted debates, he never seemed quite comfortable with what he was saying or even where he was. He threw his support behind the man who for months and up until a few minutes prior had been his "mortal" enemy. He called on his supporters to do the same. I hope he will continue to lead the "base" to work with the duly elected President to heal this nation and get us back on track. Barack Obama and John McCain have buried the hatchet. I hope their supporters will to.


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6 comments:

Someday said...

I think most people would agree that the people in charge of Senator McCain's campaign did a poor job all the way around. I would say he got almost half the votes despite his campaign management, not because of it.
Word is leaking out now how Sarah Palin was upset at the way she was expected to be presented on the campaign trail. You know, the whole "Joe six-pack" thing. I thought that was a blunder. That was not the kind of campaign she ran in Alaska. It diminished her qualifications. It's one thing to say that you rose up from humble roots, it's another to say you are still there over and over again. I didn't complain a whole lot about the way the media falsely portrayed her, because let's face it, the McCain campaign managers portrayed her the same way in a lot of respects. Well, except MSNBC and NBC. They have pretty much lost any creditability as journalists in my mind.

Personally, I think McCain could have easily won this race if he did three things right.

1. When the 700 Billion dollar bailout was first proposed, he should have come out against it and persuaded anyone in congress that would listen to vote it down as well. The American people were clear on this one. Both candidates let us down here.

2. McCain said that he wouldn't vote for anything that was chock full of pork (in this case called "sweeteners"). Then when the bailout plan was offered up a second time, it was filled with pork. $110 Billion or more. Senator McCain could have showed us he meant what he said and took a stand against it, even if he originally supported it. Some of the pork was to help folks like the Rose City Archery Inc. in Oregon. It will save the company 39 cents per arrow. And for Hollywood, the bill expands a $15 million tax break (originally written for small filmmakers) so any filmmaker can use it. Provided, that is, the movie is made in the U.S.A.

3. When Senator McCain suspended his campaign, he should have actually suspended his part in it, not un-suspend it while the issue of the bailout was still on the table. When he decided to make a concession to the other side and go on with the debate, he fell right into the hands of his rivals. They took the oppurtunity of his concession to call him erratic, and many people saw it that way, even though he was doing what his rivals asked him to do; go on with the debate.

I think if Senator McCain did those three things right, he just might be the President Elect today. His failure to live up to the "Maverick" ideals he is famous for actually hurt him in this race.

On the other side, President Elect Obama's handlers did a very good job. They learned the lessons of campaign organization that Bush had, and added a new dimension of on the ground tactics to it that proved very successful. It has surpassed the Bush model, and is the new standard of presidential campaign organization.
Just like Bush, Obama stayed on message throughout, and they energized the party, then they reached out to the other side to secure a victory.

I can only congratulate President-elect Obama for a very strong win in this political battle. He is soon to be my President, and I hope he is the best president this nation has ever had.

I have to admit, as much as I was opposed to President Elect Obama during the campaign, when he made his speech from Chicago the other night, tears welled up and flowed out of me for the historical significance of his election. We can now look our children in the eye and tell them to look at this man. Look at this man and dream as big as you want to dream, because every barrier that stood in your way has just gotten a lot smaller.

Blessings

brian said...

Someday,

I've got to tell you, the last couple of paragraphs of your comment literally gave me chills. I love it when people can come together in spite of past differences. I'm glad you were able to feel the historical significance of Tuesday night. It was truly a turning point in our nation's history. No matter what happens from this point forward, it is a major dividing line. There is before the Obama election and after the Obama election. You can legislate some things. But, you can never legislate a change of heart. The civil rights movement forced white people to give blacks certain opportunity. But, what we saw on Tuesday was the evidence that a true change of heart has occurred in this nation. We shocked the world!

Let's commit (all of us) to working together to make Obama's presidency a success, not for his sake, but for the sake of the country.

Kansas Bob said...

I really liked McCain a year ago but he alienated me during the primaries by the way he smeared Romney. I agree that he is a good man but his campaign was his to win or lose.. sadly I think that he let ambition change him and the way that he conducted his campaign.

brian said...

I didn't pay any attention to the Republican primaries. I think McCains biggest blunders during the campaign against Obama were:

1.) Never defining a message and sticking to it. First it was experience, then it was change (too late), then it was experience again.

2.) Sarah Palin- obvious gimmick that fooled a few people for a little while. Very unmaverick move dressed up as a maverick move. A lot of us saw through it day one. The more Sarah Palin opened her mouth, the more she confirmed it.

3.) Saying the fundamentals of the economy were strong when they were in the toilet.

4.) I agree with Someday, he should have not voted for the bailout bill. Then, if he was going to vote for it, he could turn around and bash it.

5.) Sticking with the Bush tax cuts. He was originally against them. Should have stood his ground. Would have made him different from Bush.

6.) Listening to Rove's protege'. He fought the last war. I think (hope) Rovian politics are over. Plus, you could tell his heart wasn't in the smears as he minimized them every time he was confronted about them, blunting his own message.

Anyway, that's the past. I really wanted to say I respect John McCain and I congratulate him on a life of service and on a hard fought campaign.

Someday said...

Brian,

There is one thing that you have been wrong about from day one.
Sarah Palin.
Without a doubt she had one bad interview. Tina Fey built a whole character based on that interview, and it worked. Since then, most people began to blur the line between Sarah Palin and the Saturday Live creation.
From that point on, she was interviewed countless times and the left waited for something to pin on her like that Couric interview.

Being in Alaska while Governor Palin was rising up to the top, I can tell you that America has not had a chance to meet her in a fair light. Even now we have obvious slandering of her character going on from people who couldn't reign her in on the campaign trail.
Why do I say obvious slander? Let's look at one allegation that can be proved or disproved. This "anonymous" campaign aid said that she couldn't stop shopping. The media followed this woman everywhere. When did they ever glimpse her out shopping except for one stop at a Wal*Mart? If they have any evidence, they could produce it.

My favorite allegation is that she didn't know what countries are in NAFTA. Her husband ran a fishing outfit that was directly affected by NAFTA because Canadian farmed salmon was then imported into the US much easier, causing a direct effect on the family business. You don't think they noticed this? Governor Palin had direct negotiations with Canada over a pipeline deal. Knowledge of NAFTA trade agreements is instrumental in ANY negotiations with Canada.

I didn't think that coverage of a female candidate could get more sexist than it did with Senator Clinton. With Governor Palin, the media and the far left solidly topped themselves in sexist coverage. One of the allegations that came out after the election is that Governor Palin was in the shower when aids came to her hotel room, and she answered the door dressed in a *gulp* BATHROBE! They called that common.

Our sons can dream big, but now that I think about it, our daughters are still left dreaming smaller.

I think I will do a piece over on my blog soon defending Governor Palin and refuting every allegation the media made about her that was unfair. The Republican party Washington elites are scared of her. They saw the crowds that came to hear her speak. Exit polling data shows that the Palin effect did bring votes to Senator McCain. Quite a few. 13% of his entire votes were solely based on her alone. That's unheard of for a vice presidential candidate. People usually vote for the top of the ticket.
The numbers show a drop for McCain after his failure to offer leadership on the bailout. The numbers show a comeback for McCain after Palin became more open to the press.

Blessings

brian said...

Sorry, my friend. I don't think we'll ever agree on Sarah Palin and it was NOT definitely not sexism that made her look bad.

I watched her with my own eyes during the Katie Couric interview, the Charlie Gibson interview and the debates. I heard her speak from her own mouth. No "anonymous sources", no spin.

Governor Palin might be a BRILLIANT woman. She might be a great politician. But, she was grossly and completely unprepared to be VP of the United States. Not only that, she lacked the intellectual curiosity and grasp of basic geopolitics of a high school student. Her lack of intellectual curiosity just astounds me. I can't imagine being a 44 year old governor who has traveled as little abroad as she has.

In four more years, she might bone up enough to "pass the test". But, her reputation with me is beyond repair. She reminds me a lot of George W. Bush and that is not a compliment and is certainly not sexist.