Thursday, July 24, 2008

Nat Hentoff on Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as McCain's VP

Pro-life liberal Nat Hentoff writes:
Amid the speculation regarding John McCain's choice to complete his presidential ticket, I offer my unsolicited suggestion for his vice president: the first woman — and youngest — governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, who is an unstereotypical and effective Republican.

During her first year in office, as reported by the Associated Press on May 10, she "distanced herself from the old guard, powerful members of the state GOP (and) stood up to the oil interests that hold great power in Alaska, and with bipartisan support in the statehouse, she won a tax increase on the oil companies' profits." Last December, this mother of four children, Mrs. Palin, four months' pregnant, found she was going to have a child with Down syndrome — a condition characterized by moderate-to-severe mental retardation. A school friend of one of my sons had Down syndrome; I have also known functioning adults with the extra chromosomes of that syndrome.

Mrs. Palin's first reaction to the diagnosis was to research the facts about the condition, since, as she said, "I've never had problems with my other pregnancies." As a result, she and her husband, Todd, never had any doubt they would have the child.

"We've both been very vocal about being pro-life," she told the Associated Press. "We understand that every innocent life has wonderful potential." In an age when DNA and other genetic-selection tests increasingly determine who is "fit" to join us human beings, we are witnessing the debate between sanctity of life vs. quality of life being more often decided in favor of death. This is a result welcomed by internationally-influential bioethicist Peter Singer. He is now a celebrated Princeton University professor, who, in July 1983, wrote in Pediatrics, the official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics: "If we compare a severely defective human infant with a nonhuman animal, a dog or pig, for example, we will often find the nonhuman to have superior capacities, both actual and potential, for rationality, self-consciousness, communication, and anything else that can plausibly be considered morally significant." And there are bioethicists who point to the continuing costs of rearing a "defective infant."

By inspirational contrast, Mrs. Palin, says of her new son, Trig: "I'm looking at him right now, and I see perfection. Yeah, he has an extra chromosome. I keep thinking, in our world, what is normal and what is perfect?" Three days after she gave birth, Mrs. Palin was back in her Anchorage office with her husband and Trig. "I can think of so many male candidates," she tells the AP, "who watched families grow while they were in office. There is no reason to believe a woman can't do it with a growing family. My baby will not be at all or in any sense neglected." Says the governor of Alaska: "I will not shirk my duties." Taking her stand for life as a holder of high political office is all the more valuable in the face of the termination of fetal lives as not worth continuing before they can speak for themselves. Mrs. Palin's stand also puts a searching light on the growing "futility" doctrine in hospitals which is affecting people of all ages.

She would be a decided asset: an independent Republican governor, a woman, a defender of life against the creeping culture of death and a fresh face in national politics. She was described in "the Almanac of National Politics" as "an avid hunter and fisher with a killer smile who wears designer glasses and heels, and hair like modern sculpture." Moreover, I doubt that she would engage in such campaigning, as Sen. McCain's strongly implying that a Hamas terrorist saying he would like Barack Obama to be president thereby damages Mr. McCain's opponent (though Mr. Obama has totally condemned Hamas). Still unknown is whether Mrs. Palin would be as flip-flopping as Mr. McCain on the Bush torture policy that has so blighted our reputation in the world. But we would find out: If chosen as his running mate, she would create more interest in this already largely scripted presidential campaign.

And her presence could highlight Mr. Obama's extremist abortion views on whether certain lives are worth living — even a child born after a botched abortion.

My Comments:
Sen. McCain could do worse. In fact, I believe all the other names mentioned as potential McCain running mates, apart from Bobby Jindal (and he really needs to serve out his term as Governor of Louisiana in my opinion), would be worse picks.

I've thought for a while that Gov. Palin would be a good choice and would seriously change the dynamics in this presidential race.

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At 7/24/2008 3:49 PM, Blogger Jeff Miller said...

Totally agree.

At 7/24/2008 5:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I totally agree as she is H A W T! (sorry, I told my wife I would stop saying that)

At 7/25/2008 2:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's obvious you follow her press releases, Mr. Hentoff, and not the news. SP is about to be investigated for abuse of power as Governor of AK. It's getting ugly...and her reputation is already tarnished. But, we conservatives in Alaska have never been a fan, anyway.

At 7/25/2008 7:59 AM, Blogger Kathy O'Leary said...

"a defender of life against the creeping culture of death"

Did Nat Hentoff overlook her position on the death penalty? (She is in favor of re-instating the death penalty in Alaska.)

At 7/25/2008 5:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

a defender of life against the creeping culture of death"

Yep by not only voting pro-life, but by welcoming her Downs Syndrome Child publicly into the world.

“I’ve never had problems with my other pregnancies, so I was shocked. It took a while to open up the book that the doctor gave me about children with Down syndrome, and a while to log on to the website and start reading facts about the situation,” she told Associated Press.

“[My husband Todd said,] we shouldn’t be asking ‘Why us?’ We should be saying ‘Well, why not us?’ We’ve both been very vocal about being pro life. We understand that every innocent life has wonderful potential. I’m looking at him right now, and I see perfection. Yeah, he has an extra chromosome. I keep thinking, in our world, what is normal and what is perfect?”

Politicians are always able to talk the talk. Far fewer are able to walk the walk. Governor Palin is a precious rarity: a politician who actually lives by her political positions.

The fact that she also believes that criminals who slay and are convicted should potentially face the death penalty doesn't make her any less a defender of innocent human life.

At 7/26/2008 12:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The fact that Palin is for the death penalty doesn't make her any less pro-life. On the contrary, the death penalty is a harch form of punishment to emphasize how important life is, especially innocent life.

Anybody remember the killer of Polly Klass? I do.

At 7/26/2008 10:14 AM, Anonymous Ted said...


1. Which McCain Veep pick is SIMULTANEOUSLY the safest AND boldest?

ANSWER: Sarah Palin

2. How can McCain SIMULTANEOUSLY attract both Hillary AND Bob Barr voters?

ANSWER: Sarah Palin

* * *

This just in from the Conservative Voice:

“Desperately seeking Sarah
July 26, 2008 10:00 AM EST

By Stephan Andrew Brodhead

Desperately seeking Sarah
Americans need a little Palin Power

Sarah Palin the current Governor of Alaska is John McCain’s ultimate choice for VP. I do believe a woman is next in line for the presidency. All Conservatives like her. She is popular in Alaska. Hillary supporters would relish her. She would solidify a 12 or possibly 16 year Republican executive.

John McCain’s boring campaign is wearing thin. I need a little Palin Power to get me interested again. They would say ‘but she is only a half term Governor!’ And your point is?

That’s all I have to say about that!”

At 7/27/2008 7:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Palin is scandalous beyond most Alaskans imagination. She is not or has not done anything conservative as far as policies. I was quite surprised to find the following email the other day, and I wonder to myself how many others received this email begging for her support and her administration on AGIA. Last I checked it was simply unethical to solicit thousands of Alaskan and State employees using gov't equiptment and rersources to fit anyone's political agenda. For cryin out loud, we are not even suppose to email/converse with our union reps on the State's dime, yet I get to read this crap when I show up to work? HMMMMM Go back to vogue Sarah where you belong and remove yourself before you screw more crap up. I'm flippin done with Palin making a mockery of my state gov't. You all should be ashamed for perpetuating this fraud.

At 7/27/2008 7:37 PM, Blogger Syrin said...

PS who the hell is Nat Hentoff? Plain is a fraud! Investigator retained 7/28/08 Sarah Palin charged with "Abuse of Power"

At 9/19/2008 9:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Mr. Obama's extremist abortion views on whether certain lives are worth living — even a child born after a botched abortion."

Educate yourself, for God's sake. Barack Obama has no such views. What an ignorant and irresponsible charge.

At 9/19/2008 11:58 PM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

It's NOT ignorant and it's NOT irresponsible. And it also happens to be 100% TRUE.

Why don't you educate YOURSELF on the issue rather than mindlessly spreading Born-Alive Barry's despicable lies?. The folks posting here have been up on this issu for quite some time, and are in no further need of reeducation on the subject.

So go get in someone else's face with your sycophantic bullsh*t. You're wasting your time here.


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