When Change Means More of the Same
So the Republican convention wrapped up last night after 4 days (3, really, thanks to Gustav), and it was comprised mainly of attacks on Democrats; lies about Democrats' accomplishments, ability, plans, and devotion to country; and tons of vague stump speech rhetoric. The non-keynote speeches at conventions are generally designed to fire up the crowd (rally the troops might be more appropriate for the RNC), but the keynotes and big name speakers are supposed to shape and define the platform. I saw none of that this week.
It's okay to criticize what you feel are inadequacies of your opponents, but the speeches by Giuliani and Romney in particular were over the top. And after you criticize you should point out how you'll do better, but I saw none of that. I can see why Gov Palin lashed out in her speech to fight back at the horrible treatment she had been getting from some of the press and far left bloggers, but I was disappointed, to put it mildly, that her attacks were baseless and, in many cases, completely false. And still utterly devoid of any policy substance.
I had hoped the crowning of McCain last night would provide some direction, but the best it offered was a toning down of the anti-Obama rhetoric of the previous nights. Its main theme floored me: change. Change? Really? Which Party has held the White House for the past 7+ years? Which Party has had control of both houses of Congress from 1994 to 2007? (Even today Democrats only have a slim lead in the House and the Senate is split 49/49.) So for McCain to run as an agent of change simply astounds me. If those guys are so unhappy with how the country has been run, how can they possibly pin it on the Democrats? Seems to me they should be switching sides if they want to see what real change is!
McCain's voting record has matched Bush's policies 90% of the time, so in this case change simply means a different suit behind the desk in the Oval Office. And I suppose they really didn't need to spell out their policy positions since we already know they'll pretty much be the same policies we've seen over the past 8 years.
Now that the conventions are over, I'll soon start posting things I like and dislike about the candidates and their VP picks. I bet I'll have some more Republican lies to clear up along the way, too. (I've already saved up a list from the RNC that I'll address when I have a bit more time.) At least football is here so I can be distracted from this nonsense for a little while each week.