Sunday, July 26, 2009

Rather than add a new Palin post...

I'll simply provide a link to a CBS poll, taken this month, that reports an astonishing share -- 51% -- of the GOP views Ms. Palin as unqualified to be an effective President.  I guess I posted too early.  Here's the link, if you care to review the poll description.

I'm seeing more evidence to support my suspicions and I'll probably post no more about Ms. Palin as a VP choice because -- as the data increasingly shows -- I don't need to.

Nearly forty percent of GOP doubts Palin's abilities

Glad I'm not alone. A recently-released ABC News/Washington Post poll with a sampling error of plus or minus 3% shows that not only is Ms. Palin's support waning across the political spectrum, it is also slipping among Republicans as a whole.

Like the 83% of Republicans surveyed, I believe that Ms. Palin shares our values. However, almost four out of ten Republicans (and 57% of Americans overall) also say we doubt her ability to "understand complex issues." Which is another way to say what I first wrote last November - that, as much as we like what she stands for, she lacks credentials for national office.
Sarah Palin, Wikipedia

The Washington Post quoted one gentleman, thus: "Rick Buila, 38, of Sharonville, Ohio, who works in finance and voted for the McCain-Palin ticket in November, said his opinion of the governor has changed. `I don't think that she is cut out to be on the national stage,' he said. `I look at her education and her background and the way she carries herself and her [resignation] speech, and when you have someone who's out there saying 'You betcha' about 50 times, I don't think that's the person we want to have negotiating with other countries.'

Sadly, a few blowhards will seize on a remark like Mr. Buila's "You betcha" comment and dismiss any GOP criticism of Ms. Palin as elitist, or worse. That's unfortunate and wrong. We don't begrudge her for her style, we simply believe that she is not ready - and frankly might never be ready - for The White House.

We can do better. We must do better.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Peggy Noonan in today's WSJ & the Palin factor

Forward-thinking Republicans might thank Peggy Noonan for explaining what too few of us have the courage to say -- Sarah Palin -- was unhelpful for the party.

I can't match Ms. Noonan's eloquence, but I can identify with what she says in this piece entitled, "A Farewell to Harms" in which she pours some truth serum with her signature wit.
Peggy Noonan, Wikipedia

If you are one of my five six readers, you may recall when I just couldn't take Ms. Palin's performance any longer and consoled myself in this November 8, 2008 post. Yesterday morning, I called in to a local radio program to express similar Palin-related thoughts (Joy Cardin takes my call @ approximately 9 minutes and 42 seconds into the 8 AM program on this tape if you care to listen).

Look, I recognize and deplore the torrent of abuse leveled at Ms. Palin and her family by the vicious Left, but we can't trot out unqualified national candidates and expect the jerks that take cheap shots to remain mute. We have to plan for the jerks using more knowledgeable, more bullet-proof candidates that can do more on the trail than just say the`right' things on cue. We need depth and agility.

I admire Ms. Palin, but she was hopelessly in over her head last year. The aforementioned Noonan piece is not a tired rant to criticize Ms. Palin's work. It's more of a description as to what is needed to rebuild the GOP.

So let's end on a hopeful note - shall we? Yes we can!

Think of the Gopher State with it's schizophrenic voting populous that can elect Comic Al Franken but also install what may be our best chance for a 2012 run at the White House - Tim Pawlenty. There is hope.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Wisconsin ghost writer no more!

I wrote a piece for a colleague (minus a byline) to express views concerning Wisconsin's recently-enacted budget bill.  Several of my passages on our state tax system and our well-funded education system, had to be deleted for my colleague's political purposes. I understand.

However, I'll publish below some thoughts that didn't make it into the published version:

"The largest recipient of state appropriations from the general fund continues to be publicly-funded elementary and secondary schools. According to a fall 2008 analysis by the nonpartisan Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance, enrollment in public schools declined for five consecutive years and declined precipitously (greater than 20%) in 51 districts.

Yet, the Legislative Fiscal Bureau projects a statewide $200 per student increase in the current biennium. Due to the manner in which public schools are funded, that increase in spending, coupled with a decrease in state aid, will be back filled by higher school property tax levies of hundreds of millions of dollars."

And part of my (also deleted) prescription for fiscal healing...

"Consolidate school districts, local government units, and municipal services.  Privatize state-owned assets where it makes economic sense to do so. Shift more tax burden from property and income taxes to consumption taxes, to attract investment."