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Archive for February 8th, 2010

Sarah Palin Aims to Bust Up the Republican Party — And the Tea Party Movement

Palin’s speech was her boilerplate of non sequiturs and cognitive disconnections, but in the interview that followed, she revealed her hand in a game for the presidency.
February 8, 2010

Sarah Palin appears to be running for president of the United States of America. You betcha.

In an interview with Chris Wallace, recorded on the eve of her Saturday night special of a speech to the Tea Party Nation convention in Nashville (and aired yesterday on Fox News Sunday), Palin didn’t quite confirm that speculation, but left the door wide open.

“Why wouldn’t you run for president?” Wallace asked.

“I would,” Palin replied. “I would if I believe that that is the right thing to do for our country and for the Palin family. Certainly, I would do so.”

Palin’s address to the Tea Partiers was standard for her: boilerplate in its arrangement of non sequiturs and cognitive disconnects. She railed against the Obama administration for ostensibly violating the 10th Amendment to the Constitution — the one that guarantees states’ rights — and then offered a health-care “fix” that violates that very amendment (allowing consumers to purchase policies across state lines, which basically intrudes upon the state’s right to regulate the insurance industry within the state). She charged the administration with trampling on the Constitution, while asserting that “foreign terrorists” arrested here aren’t entitled to constitutional rights. (Uh, actually, the Constitution confers those rights on anyone in the U.S. justice system — citizen or not.)

She stoked up the right’s anti-intellectual animus by taking shots at President Obama’s alleged elitism, and went after him for purportedly being soft on terrorism and dictators. All predictable, and a good move if you’re planning to be the opposition candidate to the president’s 2012 bid for re-election.

But during the question-and-answer session that followed with Tea Party Nation founder Judson Phillips, Palin departed from the chant of her familiar refrain to tacitly reveal her hand — and not just the talking points scribbled on it — for the strategy she may use to clear her path to the presidency. That path-clearing seems to involve the sowing of discord, not just within the Republican Party, but within the Tea Party movment as well, along with a sprinkle of discord dust on the Democratic Party for good measure.

Palin took pre-selected questions from conference attendees that were submitted through the Tea Party Nation Web site, and read by Phillips.

In answer to one question, Palin noted with enthusiasm that many Tea Party activists are not registered Republicans — just like the former first dude of Alaska.

“My husband — he’s not a registered Republican. He’s probably more conservative than I am, ” she told the convention.

Indeed, Todd Palin, for seven years was a member of the secessionist Alaska Independence Party, which is the Alaska chapter of the theocratic Constitution Party founded by Howard Phillips (no relation to Judson Phillips), one of the architects of the religious right.

MORE HERE

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Laura Flanders, The Nation, Feb 3, 2010

Who says the president is failing to show leadership? In one area at least, there’s no sign of flag or falter. If anything, the administration’s only becoming more forthright. Sad to say, that area is military build-up.

Last year, the White House made a big deal of cutting a weapons program — the F-22 fighter jet — and the cuts conveniently obscured the growth in spending on unmanned aircraft or drones (the weapons that Pakistanis say killed a record 123 civilians in twelve attacks last month; 41 for every alleged Al Qaeda operative.)

Continues >>

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