What I Wish McCain Would Say

Carol Platt Liebau
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Posted: Oct 16, 2008 3:16 PM
In my view, his debate performance and the emergence of Joe the Plumber have given the McCain campaign a needed shot in the arm.  In a sense, Joe has illustrated how sharp the differences between the candidates really are.

This helps McCain.  Every blurring of the lines, every bit of obfuscation protects a far-left candidate who intends to redistribute money and empower government.  Perhaps Senator McCain should capitalize on the raising of these differences.  Perhaps, even, he should find a minute to sharpen the differences even more, and put together an ad where he simply talks to the camera, and says something like this:

For some time now, we've heard our Democrat friends talk about how there are two Americas.  Perhaps you'd be surprised to learn that I actually agree with them.  I'm beginning to believe that this election is actually a referendum on which of the two Americas we really are -- the one I know, or the one that Senator Obama seems to see.

I realize America isn't perfect.  Right now, a lot of families are suffering because of the bad acts of some greedy people.  I intend to hold them to account and make sure those like them can't inflict more damage on other people or our economy.  Our history also has its chapters of injustice; like all decent Americans, I regret them, deeply.

But at its heart, when I look at America, I see a country that is good, uniquely God-blessed, and worth preserving, protecting and defending.  I see a nation filled with hardworking, fine people with a can-do spirit, who just want to be able to live the American dream -- earn an honest living, raise their families in peace and freedom, and pass on to their children even more opportunities than they had.   I remember the enormous, spontaneous outpourings of love and generosity across this land after tragedies ranging from 9/11 to Hurricane Katrina.  I think of our history of sacrifice, not just for the good of our own citizens, but for the freedom of people all across the world.  That's the America I know. 

I feel proud to live in a country that -- despite all our imperfections -- is still a model of liberty and justice for the rest of the world.  And I believe that Americans want a government that will work for them -- as our founders intended -- not one so big, so powerful, and so intrusive that they will have to work for it.

Judging from his policies, the America my opponent sees is a very different one.  His America is full of greedy people, who will cheat and neglect the less fortunate unless the government steps in to "spread the wealth around."  The country he sees is also full of victims of all kinds -- whose only common frame of reference is not being able to get a fair shake without the government's help.  He (and certainly, the people with whom he's surrounded himself for many years) look at America and find a nation wracked by systemic injustice and downright meanness -- requiring the government (again) to involve itself in all our lives to enforce their notion of "equality." 

In our dealings abroad, he apparently believes it's time  to forget our unsophisticated notions of American exceptionalism, and fall in line with other western democracies that submit to an ever-increasing among of international governance. 

Now, if you're a regular, ordinary American, and you don't agree with him about all of this, he suggests that you just don't understand your own self-interest -- or that you're bitter, "clinging" to guns and religion.

Well, I'm not bitter -- but I certainly do not agree with Senator Obama's policies, and I don't share his view of America.  The America I know is very different than the one he sees, and I believe it is the true one. 

But in the end, you are the ones who get to decide which of us is right.  All I ask is that, when you vote, you keep in mind that the leaders we elect don't just reflect who we are and what we believe right now.  They also help to shape what America becomes in the future.