The story of this election now is: Can John McCain pull off the upset?
If he is successful it will primarily be for two reasons: his selection of Sarah Palin and his latent, but now laser-like, focus on economic reforms.
What voters are learning about these two things is, first, that John McCain has a record of attempting many and achieving some real reforms. No small feat from the perch of the United State Senate where you often get elaborate debate and disagreement on what time of day it is. Barack Obama’s own thin record proves it is easy to find success if you simply go-along to get-along.
Voters are also coming to realize that while Sarah Palin’s status as a “commoner” won’t win her endorsements from the elite; it is precisely her common sense and her instincts that are needed to deliver reform. Sarah Palin has a record that puts people above party and entrenched political interests and proves that sound executive decisions trump rhetorical flourishes when it comes to leading and governing.
This McCain-Palin reform agenda is exactly what America needs. And it contrasts sharply with the change agenda pushed by Barack Obama and Joe Biden.
That’s because there are real differences between change and reform. Voters, while attracted to Obama’s verbal political skills, are wary of his political and social aims. Obama has captured America’s appetite for change, but that does not translate into a clamoring to change America. Thus, if our citizens seek reform not change, McCain is more attractive.
Consider the chief reform we need: To get rid of the incumbents who conceived an economic “Trojan Horse” in the form of public policy social engineering through political operatives placed at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, coming full circle in the form of hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations back to those very incumbents. We know which incumbents conceived this scam and that they must go, and those who turned a blind eye to it ought to go with them.
Their actions manipulated the lives of individual Americans who could not make their monthly payments on their sub-prime mortgages, and thereby caused the financial tsunami that now undermines the livelihood of all Americans.
On this fundamental reform, who is more likely to deliver? McCain-Palin who will cleanse the government of such a cancer while cutting the unnecessary and inviting sunlight and transparency into government operations; or Obama-Biden who are pledging a larger and more activist government that will rely on the very same failed institutions to force their brand of change on Americans?
One seeks to reform the system of government that has birthed the greatest country on earth; the other seeks to change it.
The system set up by our Founding Fathers is the right system. The only time we have ever gotten into trouble is when individuals within the system have tried to game the system for partisan political advantages or outright greed and the quest for personal power.
An often cited example of politicians trying to usurp power away from the people is when Democrats attempted to pack the Supreme Court, increasing the number of justices from nine to 15. Such a move is similar to what they were able to do with the financial “Trojan Horse” – stuffing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with their operatives and cronies in order to game the system.
It may be coarse on the ears, but a crisis – like our current economic situation – has always been seen as an opportunity by those who desire to grow the scope and size of government. Even if they begin with good intentions, their pursuit of power and control leads in the direction of socialism, collectivism, and ultimately a communist-type system of coercion.
Our history books are rife with examples of the failure of centralized, big government solutions and its false promises. Yet this very approach has been laid before us again in this election.
That we have so large a number of undecided voters, this late in a campaign, supports the belief that the last thing voters are motivated to do is empower those who created our economic problems with the opportunity to cover their tracks and install their version of a solution. Barack Obama is aware of this and has calibrated his change message as a salve to our fragile psyches. In other words, he tinges his message to prey on our fears.
Accordingly, for someone who’s greatest political asset is his rhetorical skill of reading a teleprompter, voters are now looking under the hood before buying the car. To buy into his change, we must first agree that all options within our current system have been exhausted. And that’s simply not true.
Consider health care: There is constant talk about the need to change our approach to it, but has everyone really had the chance to purchase their own health care? Has everyone had the chance to take their health care plan with them when they left one job to start a new one? Has everyone been able to pick up the phone and call their insurance company and say, this is the doctor I choose for my family and I, rather than being told they are restricted to the doctors in their network?
They haven’t. But introducing choice and competition into the health care system empowers individuals and families and takes power and control away from Washington. These are among the reforms of our current system that John McCain is talking about in his campaign. His plans contrasts sharply with Obama’s plan that would have big government setting benefit levels with no cost controls.
Those are specifics of change that don’t sell, so Obama talks only about vague generic change. McCain talks reform. Between them there are vast differences. It is within this space that McCain-Palin has found their theme. It’s a theme that resonates with the American people.