"Language, as well as the faculty of speech, was the immediate gift of God." ~ Noah Webster

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Political Junkie

The second Republican Presidential debate was held last night. Because I am somewhat of a "political junkie", I was really looking forward to watching it. But then, I realized it was on CNN and I don’t get CNN with my television package.

I knew I could watch the debate on-line, but I don’t have unlimited data, and I knew a 3 hour debate would take a pretty big chunk out of what data I have available. Before the month was over, I would end up going over my limit by quite a bit and get charged substantially more.
I was frustrated that I couldn’t watch. I busied myself about the garden and then the kitchen, thinking I would side-track my disappointment. Finally about an hour and a half later, I gave in and turned on the computer to see if I could find the debate streaming live. Of course, CNN had it available. I set the computer to full screen and sat down to watch. I had only missed an hour and 15 minutes of a 3 hour debate.

I am not sorry I watched. I love getting to know these candidates better. And I love seeing how they interact with each other and how they handle sticky situations. Certainly, I love to hear their answers regarding foreign and domestic policy. Truthfully, the whole thing invokes a great deal of pride in me. Pride for these men and women who are so adept and skilled in their answers. Pride in a nation that affords their citizens the opportunity to be so active in the politics of our nation; and pride that we have men and women who actually believe they can do something great for America, the land that we love.

I woke up this morning and the debate was still on my mind. I kept running through my thoughts different statements by the candidates and things that took place. It was early, still dark outside, and an hour earlier than I normally get up. I usually at least wait for the first light before I rise, but I couldn’t shut my mind off to go back to sleep…”Oh-oh! I feel a blog post coming on”, I told myself. I got up to write.
Obviously no one wants to read about a 3 hour debate, so I thought I would just touch on some of the highlights and hopefully make it entertaining enough that someone will want to read it.

Nothing that I write about is in any particular order, but rather just as it comes to mind as I type.

One of my favorite moments was toward the end of the debate when the moderator told us he was going to now ask a couple "light- hearted" questions. He asked the candidates, if they could replace Hamilton who is on the ten dollar bill, with a woman, who would they put on this piece of currency.

There were some good answers. I think it was Ted Cruz that said he wouldn’t change the ten dollar bill because Hamilton was a Founding Father. Rather he would change the 20.00 bill who had Jackson on it and he would put Rosa Parks on it, instead. I wasn’t real impressed with that…I think he was invoking a name he thought would get him votes. But then, I guess that is what they are supposed to do - get votes.

Carly Fiorina - the only woman on the stage - said she would not change history at all by replacing anyone on any bill with a woman. Being I am so firm on keeping history intact, I liked that. I thought that was the best answer. It was especially interesting coming from the only woman.
But I loved Ben Carson’s answer the best when he said he would put his mom on the bill. When he gave his testimony regarding the person his mother was, it brought tears to my eyes. I know his story well, having read all of his books. But the passion with which he talked about his mom was very moving. Equally moving is the miracle that his life is, especially after understanding what his mom was up against. It was incredibly inspiring. I love Ben Carson and I always have, but he is a bit too liberal for me on certain issues. However, a part of me would love to see someone like him - a black, Christian man who has no experience in the political realm - win the election just to see what would happen. But the Presidency is not a social experiment, and the wiser part of me opts for someone with experience. I do believe Carson would pick a good team and follow their advice when it came down to running his office, though.

One of the funniest moments of the debate, I thought was when the moderator gave his second light hearted question. He asked the candidates, what he thought they would like their secret service names to be if they were elected President. Each President is given a name by secret service as code. It was interesting to hear their responses, but the funniest by far was Jeb Bush when he said “Eveready”. He has been attacked mercilessly by Donald Trump, for his lack of energy. Jeb got one on the Donald with that answer. The crowd roared with laughter.
And doggone! I hate to say it, but Chris Christie, Governor of New Jersey just continues to impress me. I haven’t really cared for Christie up until these debates, feeling he is too liberal on too many issues. But holy cow, does he nail the foreign policy questions and national defense every time he has to answer. His passion and experience with 9/11 make his reasoning very compelling. I have always thought that way, anyway, I just didn’t know he did. He also schooled Trump and Fiorina on their back and forth bickering about the successes and failures of their careers. “No one cares!” Christie chastised. “You’re both rich and famous! Congratulations! But let’s talk about the 55 year old brick layer trying to make a living.” That’s a paraphrase, but you get the idea. Honestly, I thought that was very appropriate and put what I was feeling into words. Let’s get off the attacks of one another and get on with substance.

Ted Cruz, one of my leading candidates had an awesome closing statement, touching on everything that is my heart. I get tired of the drama in Ted’s voice, but if I had to choose today, he is probably who I would vote for.
I am still undecided, though. I have long loved Huckabee and would not hesitate a bit to cast my vote for him. He didn’t seem to have any break out moments last night, unless it was in the first part of the debate that I missed. But he stands on principle and has always been true to his convictions. He definitely has the experience.

There are two candidates should they receive the nomination that I would have trouble voting for. Trump and Rand Paul. Of course, I would vote for whomever the Republican candidate is, because I believe so firmly that we MUST get the Democrats out of control. But  truthfully those are the two I would prefer go no further.
Trump is not Presidential material, in my opinion, with his rude comments and attacks of others always being at the forefront of his lips. And too, he has changed too many of his positions so that he can now run on the Republican ticket. He has always been too liberal in the past. I don’t know how that is possible coming from a man that has the success he has had using the Capitalism most Democrats disdain, but liberal he was.

And Rand Paul…oh my goodness where do I begin. I can write pages about him!! Suffice it to say, he had the low point in the debate, when trying to defend the legalization of marijuana. He called out someone on the stage for being a hypocrite, because that person now opposed the legalization of marijuana, but had smoked it in high school! What a foolish thing to say! Paul isn’t even smart enough to see that just because someone smoked dope as a youth, doesn’t make them a hypocrite because they grew up, learned their lessons, and changed their position. That isn't hypocrisy! That's wisdom!! Paul wasted so much time on foolish arguments regarding the legalization of this dangerous drug, that I could have slapped him into next week. Of course, he used the phony premise that this is all about medical marijuana. Several of the candidates called him on that. And Jeb, handling the awkward moment very well, fessed up that it was he that Paul was referring to, and then he perfectly explained his current position. Paul simply isn't smart enough to figure out, he isn't going to win a Republican debate, by advocating for the legalization of marijuana! For me that's a huge problem.
And of course Paul is always proud of his isolationist/pacifist position regarding foreign policy. He simply isn’t smart enough to see that is not what American needs, nor is that who we are. Continually blasting conservative Republicans as RINO’s (Republicans in Name Only) he is the real RINO. He is nothing more than a libertarian aligned more closely to the Democrat’s ideals than he ever will be Republican. I can’t stand the man.

Also, Paul has a new thing he loves to do now that really fires me up. He loves to say, “If you want a war-mongering President, you have 10 of them on this stage, I am not your candidate if that is what you want.” And then he aligns these "war-mongering candidates" with Hilary and the Democrats, saying they are alike in that regard. This could not be further from the truth. There is a reason he is doing it, however. He has been exposed for who he really is over the years; and that is someone who is left of Obama and the Democrats on foreign policy. It has been the main criticism he has received and it is the truth. Had he been elected President in 2008 and 2012, we would be experiencing the exact same result we have experienced with Obama. And that is a downgrading of our military and losing all that was accomplished in Iraq because of Obama’s foolish and early withdrawal of troops. Paul would have done the exact same thing Obama did, with the exact same results.
But Paul has to counter that problem critique of his positions…that “he is left of Obama.” Anyone can figure out that statement is a problem for someone running on the Republican ticket. So Paul simply lies, by equating Democrats and Republicans as people that would get us into every war, every chance they get. It is a falsehood and he is the one that is more aligned with the Democrats in his positions regarding war and the downgrading of the military. Finally, this is getting long, so I won’t even go into Paul’s position on Israel. But that is most important of all. Suffice it to say, he is no different than Obama on his support of Israel.

There is one thing Trump had correct, though I didn’t like it when Trump said it, “Paul [didn’t] belong on that stage.”
Well anyway, I got that out of my system now. There were a lot of other things that I could write about regarding the debate, but no sense in boring my readers. I’m sure I already pushed the envelope in that regard.
Instead, I’m going to go see if I can find the first hour and 15 minutes of the debate on line, so I can watch what I missed…YES! I AM a political Junkie.

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