Being a hypocrite is no better
By Chuck Muth
In politics, there’s significant value in the ability to speak on particular issues with moral authority. There’s also a well-deserved penalty for being a hypocrite. Case in point: McCain-Palin calling Barack Obama a socialist.
First, let’s get this out of the way: Barack Obama IS a socialist. He wants the government to take money from those according to their ability and redistribute it – “spread it around” – to those according to their need. Or as the rock group Ten Years After put it, about ten years after Obama was born and before domestic terrorist Bill Ayers was washed up: “Tax the rich, feed the poor, ’til there are no rich no more.”
Obama is a self-admitted modern-day “Robbing” Hood – stealing from the “rich” (anybody with a job) and giving to the poor. So the charge that he’s a socialist is not only relevant, but accurate.
That being said, John McCain has little room to talk. In fact, it’s a little bit of the pot calling the kettle black. Oops, sorry, I mean non-white.
When you support the government taking $700 billion from taxpayers and redistributing it to Wall Street, that’s socialism. When the government nationalizes the banking industry, that’s socialism. When you say you want the government to take $300 billion from taxpayers to “prop up” home values, that’s socialism.
So not only does John McCain not have the moral authority to criticize Barack Obama for being the socialist he is, John McCain comes off looking like a hypocrite for criticizing Barack Obama for being the socialist he is. And in the minds many voters, it’s worse to be a political hypocrite than a left-wing socialist.
Unfortunately, Sarah Palin isn’t positioned much better in this department. Unlike her coming-out speech at the Republican National Convention, Gov. Palin is now playing the social engineering gender card aggressively on the stump, telling an audience in Henderson, Nevada, this week that “only our side has a woman on the ticket.” Can you just imagine the backlash from conservatives if Obama declared publicly that “only our side has a black on the ticket”? You see, hypocrisy again.
Shouldn’t voters judge candidates by their experience, philosophy and character rather than the color of their skin or chromosome make-up?
And how many hockey moms wear $2,500 Valentino jackets paid for by the Republican National Committee? Or go on $75,000 shopping sprees at Neiman Marcus, and $49,000 shop-’til-you-drop excursions to Saks Fifth Avenue? And what difference does it make that the clothing will be donated to a “charitable purpose” after the election? Hasn’t anyone on the McCain campaign ever heard of J.C. Penny’s?
One final Palin note: The Alaska governor’s selection as McCain’s running mate was primarily designed to shore up John McCain’s lagging support among conservatives and narrow the “enthusiasm gap” between his and Barack’s campaigns. As the saying goes, “mission accomplished.” But while social conservatives have every reason to continue supporting the veep candidate who supports their pro-life/anti-gay marriage agenda, limited-government Goldwater conservatives have growing reasons to be wary.
For myself, red flags went up the minute I read that Gov. Palin told the Alaska teachers union in 2006 that she opposed school vouchers. But now she’s embracing the Left’s government-imposed gender equity pay schemes and praising Title IX – a liberal 1970s era “anti-discrimination” law which has literally wiped out many high school and college sports for boys. Take from one to give to another. Social engineering by government.
I don’t know about you, but I’m starting to have concerns that Sarah Palin’s commitment to a true, limited-government conservative philosophy might just be a mile wide and an inch deep. It could be that she talks the talk, but wouldn’t really walk the walk. She might just be all hat and no cattle. You know, like President Bush.
Chuck Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, a non-profit public policy advocacy organization in Washington, D.C. The views expressed are his own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Citizen Outreach. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.