Sense or Sensibility? Country First or Campaign First?

Now that both the democratic and republican conventions are over, can we get over the hype and get back to the issues?

The empty and high flowed rhetoric is unfortunately predictable at these kinds of political events but I have to say the messages from DNC are way more clear and convincing than that of RNC.

The democrats not only claimed to change, they backed up their claim by laying out specific policies regarding the Iraq war, foreign policy, tax and environmental friendly energy policy, etc. that are in stark contrast to the incumbent administration. In addition, the democrats put up a better show of united front.

From the republicans, however, I took away nothing outstanding that would set them apart from the existing policies, not on the important issues I care about any way, Iraq war, foreign policy, tax and energy policy, etc. Where is the change? What reforms? Plus, even though McCain showed a bipartisan spirit, his republican comrades including Sarah Palin, his choice for vice president, were slashing Obama and the democrats in unconstructive ways.

The speech that moved me emotionally and inspired me mentally was Obama’s acceptance speech. I was energized by the vigor, the honesty, the dignity and visions fit for the twenty first century.

The Republican Convention on Tue night gave me a strange impression. Despite the ear splitting shouting, hailing and cheering, I felt no vibes or vigor. I heard no vision that inspires. If I could draw, I would have sketched the image that came to mind, a herd of toothless old goats with no sense of time pathetically hanging on to the past.

And then I listened again on Wed night. I admire Sarah Palin’s poise, confidence, political savvy and her accomplishments. I agree that “She is a person to reckon with”, “She is a star”, “She is spunky”, etc., etc. But I came away with negative impression of her as well. She avoided the whole story but exaggerated her own merits on the Bridge to Nowhere. In the mean time she distorted Obama’s record by falsely accusing him having not authored “a single major law or even a reform” in the U.S. Senate or the Illinois Senate. I checked FactCheck.org on these points and you can too. Further more, even though she did not mention Obama’s name in her remarks, “In politics, there are some candidates who use change to promote their careers.” It was clearly aimed.

I could not respect any cowardly and dishonest practice aiming to inflame and distort.

Sarah Palin is pro life but she does not strike me as maternal. I could be wrong but I remember thinking: “She talked the talk but how much attention is that poor baby going to get from his mommy?” when she said in her speech: “And children with special needs inspire a special love.”

Listening to comments such as “She energizes…” and “She electrifies…” I felt an abyss away because I felt none of that. How different people can be? And yet, no matter how different we are, we must make our choices by sense not just sensibility.

Then it was the grand finale of McCain’s acceptance on Thu night. McCain, was not exciting, nonetheless, he is an admirable and respectable man with impressive records, noble ideas and spirits. Still the fundamentals have not changed. We don’t share the same positions on the Iraq war, foreign policy, tax and energy, etc.

The breaking point for me is the Iraq war. I hate war. War kills and destroys. War is the scourge of all calamities. My heart sinks and I clench my teeth unconsciously whenever I think of what Auntie Chen witnessed as a little girl on the streets of Nanking, China during the Japanese invasion. Has not thousands of years of history taught us anything? One has to strengthen one’s defensive system but war is not justified unless it is absolutely the last resort for self defense. Iraq war is unjustified. Let alone it was started by manipulating intelligence and lying to the people of the country and the world about the real motives of those who want the war, it attenuated the force going after the real enemies and created new enemies and Bin Laden is still at large.

Did the bible not say this: “But I tell you not to resist an evildoer. On the contrary, whoever slaps you on the right cheek, turn the other to him as well”? And then how could these people who claim to be the faithful sons and daughters of God, wage a war like the war in Iraq? I know some might argue that one can also find this from the bible: “An eye for an eye. A tooth for a tooth.” I am still not convinced. Where and when were your eye and tooth taken in Iraq?

At the end of day, do you want another term of Bush or alike in the white house? Do you want to continue the short sighted, irresponsible, cowardly, egotistic policies? Wage a war and let the people of the country to bear the death and debt? Continue the old school of combative spirits towards the world and wage more wars, Iran and North Korea? Continue the same tax policy that has failed the past eight years? Take the easy way out, drill up all the oil, and let your posterity to worry about the global warming?

Not me!

McCain lacks the twenty first century visions and ideas to lead this country to success in the new world. McCain will serve the country better by letting Obama, the one with “the best ideas for the country”, lead. Now, that is truly “Country First”.

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2 Responses

  1. Hi Yvonne,
    Lots of interesting things here! I feel exactly the same as what you’ve said about Sarah Palin. I imagine if I were a conservative Republican I would be crazy about her, since she does have personality, spunk and style. But for me that’s where it seems to begin and end.
    “Country first” is a very interesting slogan for the Republicans. It echoes the proto-fascist and anti-interventionist “America First” movement of the early 20th century leading up to America’s involvement in WWII. You notice McCain used “Country” instead of “America” – “America First” was already taken. One issue there is, why “Country” or “America” first, and not Family First or God First? Why Country? That’s what makes Country/America First a fascist notion, the idea that country comes before your family or your God.

    • That is an insightful view, triggering me to research a little on that part of American history, quite interesting.
      Apart from the campaign and putting things in general perspective, I say Democracy first.
      Looking at the history of human civilization and coming from China (a country devastated by the rule of man instead of rule of law during Proletarian Cultural Revolution, when Ma Zhedong was elevated to a semi-god, Mao Zhedong Thought became the bible of caliber for all actions, no one dared to not do whatever he had said and no one dared to do what he had not said), I deeply resent any system that dominates by the threatening of punishment and violence. Long live democracy and humanity.

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