From the moment when Sarah Palin was first introduced at the Republican Convention, we learned that truthfulness was not a virtue she considered to be important. She had no compunction about reporting that she said “thanks but No Thanks to the Bridge to Nowhere”, even though she originally favored it. She said that she had sold the Governor’s private plane on eBay, when in fact she had not. Later she said that she opposed earmarks, but in fact Palin had requested, and obtained, millions of dollars of federal tax dollars for Alaska while acting as the Governor. Some might find the mating habits of crabs or the DNA of harbor seals to be less than an urgent national concern, but obviously Palin must have had a different perspective, about their importance, and/or the characterization of those dollars as “earmarks”. While the mayor of Wasilla, Palin hired a lobbyist for the very purpose of obtaining earmarks for the tiny town of Wasilla, which boasts a population of less than 7000 people. For a mere $38,000.00 Wasilla was able to hire a powerful lobbyist who obtained $27,000,000.00 for this previously unknown village in Alaska (Litman 24). Sarah told us that she was a feminist, so of course why wouldn’t we believe her? The fact that she opposed the Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, requiring fair pay for women doing the same job as a man, or that she made rape victims pay for their own rape examination kits in Wasilla, were obviously not relevant to the issue of Palin’s attitudes regarding the feminist agenda. McCain’s own campaign manager Steve Schmidt explained that Palin wanted to lie about the fact that her husband had for 6 years been a member of the Alaskan Independence Party. Schmidt also disclosed that Palin advocated telling the American people that she had been completely exonerated by the ethics commission, when in fact the bipartisan Alaskan commission determined that Palin had abused her power and acted unethically. Thus it is crystal clear that Palin has learned that it doesn’t seem to matter what you have done or said in the past, the important thing is what you say to people today. Palin has learned that most people have a very poor memory. Palin has capitalized on the failing memories of her supporters, and now she is teaching that same valuable lesson to John McCain.
In the election of 2008, the sales-pitch of John McCain, that seemed to be a part of virtually every speech and commercial, was that John was a “maverick”. As the Republican candidate, trying to overcome the frustrations of the American people caused by George W. Bush, McCain had to distance himself from that image and comparison. Calling himself a “maverick” was a logical and brilliant solution. A “maverick” is a person who takes a position or independent stand from a party or group as defined by Webster’s Dictionary. In the election of 2008, McCain and Palin became known as the “mavericks”. It wasn’t that they relied upon the media to reach that conclusion on its own, but McCain and Palin actively worked to establish themselves as the “mavericks”. People who knew nothing about the policies for which McCain stood, knew he was a “maverick”.
It’s only been a year-and-a-half since the November election of 2008. For the first Seventy-two years of life, McCain flaunted himself as a “maverick”. Yet in the space of 18 short months, he has either metamorphosed into a Senator who has “consistently” sided with conservatives, or his memory has simply failed (which may be more likely given his age). Now, as of, April 3, 2010, McCain has relinquished his image as a “maverick”. I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks! Certainly if your teacher is a much younger, attractive, “perky”, pit bull wearing lipstick, there is no end to the things that might be accomplished. Truthfulness seems to be unimportant to those who support Palin, and now those who support Senator McCain.