Winning with honor

At the toughest moment of his near death experience in the primaries, John McCain said that he “would rather lose an election than lose a war.” He was right to say this.

In 2000 he said “I want the Presidency in the best way…not the worst way. I will not take the low road to the highest office in the land.”

In 2000 John McCain lost an election, but he never lost his honor. One good man simply lost to another good man. He may lose to another good man in 2008. What I know is that he is not willing to destroy his soul or rip America apart to win.

Others are less honorable.

While the temptation here is to focus on Bill and Hillary Clinton, they are on the verge of destroying themselves. I have no interest in creating a sympathy backlash for them. They played the race card in South Carolina, and dealt it from the bottom of a crooked marked deck. They have always placed winning at all costs among doing what is right.

Yet they are, barring a comeback, yesterday’s news. The problems are coming from others, throughout the spectrum.

Some on the right take glee in referring to Barack Obama as “B. Hussein Obama.” This is disgusting. There is no reason to do this unless the goal is to attempt to discredit Barack Obama based on fears of his connection to Muslim murderers.

Saddam Hussein was evil. I supported invading Iraq, capturing him and killing him. I support the same with Osama Bin laden. Barack Obama is merely an American citizen with a middle name that many Muslims have.

Is America ready for a Muslim President? I do not know. Am I ok with that? I do not know. I would have some hard thinking to do on an introspective level. Barack Obama has insisted that he is a Christian, and I accept him at his word. He seems to be a man of integrity, and until and unless he is proven to be a congenital liar like one of his opponents, taking him at his word is all I can do.

Obama has been attacked for receiving the endorsement of antisemite and all around dreadful human being Louis Farrakhan. Saying that Farrakhan agrees with him does not imply the reverse. Obama made it clear that he deplores Farrakhan’s antisemitic comments. The same issue invovles Obama’s controversial pastor, Jeremiah Wright. Pastor Wright supports Farrakhan.

There is no evidence that Barack Obama himself is an antisemite. To imply otherwise without such evidence borders on slanderous. Unless one works for the Jayson Blair Times, where such behavior is self evident, there is no reason to tarnish a man this way.

Another tactic against Obama has been to circulate a picture of him wearing what appears to be a turban. This dirty trick from the Clintons was not to highlight any kind of cultural heritage in a positive way. It was meant to show a Muslim wearing a turban to scare voters. As I have said, some people are better than that. The Clintons are not.

John McCain has honor. He has condemned such tactics.

I want John McCain to be President. I am going to do everything I can to help him defeat Barack Obama, or Hillary if she steals the nomination. I am not willing to sink into the gutter to do so.

So how does one defeat Barack Obama?

By pointing out that he is an empty suit? That could work, but too many people might disagree. That is a legitimate tactic however.

The best way for McCain to defeat Obama is to have a substantive debate on issues. Elections should be about policy. This one actually can be.

Free trade works. Isolationism and protectionism are wrong. John McCain supports free trade. Barack Obama wants to move towards protectionism. Trade deals with South Korea, some Latin American nations, and others, are a boon to America. NAFTA was a success overall. Yes, this is a tough sell in places like Ohio, but it is still right.

Where does Obama stand on the death penalty? This is worth asking. Is he as liberal as Michael Dukakis on this issue? Capital punishment is less powerful an issue than two decades ago, but only because democrats began supporting it.

John McCain supports school choice, including vouchers. Barack Obama is held hostage by teachers’ unions. On education, the democrats want lower standards. They will decry this assertion, but the public schools are a disaster, and liberalism is responsible for this. Liberals will disagree, but it still makes for a legitimate discussion.

John McCain is against gun control. Obama supports it. Sure, school shootings will be trotted out to make the NRA look like the devil’s evil twin, but what plays well on the coasts does not work well in middle America. Gun owners are a major reason George W. Bush won West Virginia twice, after democrats had owned the state for generations. Does Obama believe private citizens have a right to own guns?

McCain supports making the Bush tax cuts permanent. Obama wants to let them expire. This is the same thing as raising taxes. Obama supporters will dispute this, but that is a debate worth having. McCain should clean Obama’s clock with this argument.

McCain supports staying in Iraq to get the job done. Obama wants to immediately withdraw. To paraphrase President Bush, with regards to this disagreement, “Bring it on.” The American people were frustrated, but they will be patient if they see positive results. The surge has worked. McCain backed the war when it was popular, unpopular, and inbetween. Obama has been against it the entire time. This is a substantive disagreement.

There are probably many more examples that reflect what should be the theme of the 2008 election, that John McCain is a conservative and Barack Obama is a liberal.

This does not imply that liberals are bad people. It just means that they are wrong. From Hubert Humphrey to George McGovern to Jimmy Carter to Walter Mondale to Michael Dukakis to Al Gore to John Kerry, liberals lose elections when running against true conservatives. Conservatives win elections over liberals when they avoid betraying conservative principles, especially on taxes.

As for the left, they will be tempted to play the race card again. They will imply that anybody who votes against Barack Obama is automatically a racist. When Hillary implied that voting against her was due to sexism, it was noxious. That line of thinking is still noxious months later. Thankfully enough people looked at Hillary and said, “It is not about women. We just don’t like you specifically.”

The same standard must be applied to Obama, although he is significantly more likable than Hillary. It is not black vs white. It is right vs wrong.

Barack Obama is a good, decent, affable man who could develop into a great Senator in Illinois if he allows deeds to match his soaring and eloquent words. He can fill in that blank slate. He is also not the man to be President on issues, and issues alone.

America is not a racist nation, and the republican party is not a racist party. Republicans must hit back hard against any such charges, since silence is acquiescence. Richard Nixon’s “southern strategy” was 40 years ago. The average republican today wants America to win the War on Terror and lower taxes, while promoting liberty and individual freedom. This is good for all people, black and white.

John McCain is the only person still running for President that is actually ready to do the job. He is tough, smart, and experienced. Oh yeah, and he is a real hero.

Barack Obama is a good person. He is a good speaker. He is not a good choice for President because he is wrong on the issues.

John McCain is right. That should be the debate. John McCain will win the election with honor. I trust him to do so. America will be better off not only for the end result of his victory, but for the means he uses to get to the White House.


9 Responses to “Winning with honor”

  1. POW Warrior says:

    I’m sorry to disagree with you but John McCain lost his honor the moment he betrayed those men that were left behind and unaccounted for from Vietnam. Ask a POW/MIA Family member what John McCain has systematically done to these brave heroes and their families.

    In fact, go here:

    Read what familiy members themselves have to say about John Sidney McCain.

    Anyone who would turn their back on those less fortunate than themselves and use their fate for political posture, well, honor is the last word to describe someone who would do something like this.

    This is the real John McCain – if POW/MIA Families don’t support him, I think that speaks volumes.

    The POW Warrior

  2. greg says:

    John McCain can afford to take the high road when there are others willingly or unwittingly already in the gutter.

    “Is America ready for a Muslim president?” There can really be no other reason to even ask the question in the middle of a presidential campaign if not to point out the very things McCain and the GOP leadership has condemned.

    For the record, Barack Obama is a long-time member of the United Church of Christ, a mainline Protestant denomination that traces its direct lineage back to the Congregationalists and even earlier to the Pilgrims and Puritans. Virtually every town in New England has a First Congregational Church as do many throughout the United States, including my own. While I was ordained by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), of which both Lyndon Johnson and Ronald Reagan were members, I also hold joint ministerial partnership standing in the United Church of Christ.

    With regard to endorsements from unsavory individuals, all candidates face that problem from time to time. However, there is a big difference in how Obama repduiated Farrakhan and how McCain sought out Hagee’s endorsement, being introduced by Hagee in South Carolina, an event displayed on McCain’s campaign website, and with McCain expressing how “honored” and “pleased” he was over Hagee’s endorsement.

    About Hagee, McCain states that he is “very proud of the Pastor John Hagee’s spiritual leadership to thousands of people and I am proud of his commitment to the independence and the freedom of the state of Israel.”

    Of course, what Hagee is calling for with his commitment to Israel is the unification of Israel so that the Rapture can happen and all Jews — including you, eric — will be slaughtered and sent to hell. Hagee calls the Catholic Church the “Mother Whore” and a “cult” and argues that Hurricane Katrina was God’s punishment for New Orleans scheduling a gay pride parade that week.

  3. Jersey McJones says:

    To the Tygrrrr’s arguments:

    “Free trade works.”

    Not for everyone. Nothing works for everyone. The question is this: How many voters are better off for it or not this cycle?

    There is no exclusionary, individually bilfurcated, universal free trade system. It is tilted in every conceivable direction. Free trade does NOT work all the time, and it rarely works for every party in any transaction anytime. There are serious arguments to be made regarding the selectivity of what neocons call “Free Trade.” It’s like the “Flat Tax” – there is no such a thing in application to date.

    “McCain supports staying in Iraq to get the job done.”

    This, McCain will make an issue of. This he will exploit. If Obillary stays with the status quo. there’ll be no issue. I expect little rhetorical difference about the war in the general elections.

    “As for the left, they will be tempted to play the race card again.”

    I wouldn’t toy with that tempest if I were you. Lord knows McCain ain’t. The right is just as up for that as the left, if not more. It all goes around. And if you think Hillary got in trouble for her racial foibles, try it on for McCain! He’ll avoid that like the plague. Hillary never actually did play the race card – she simply brought it up. It’s like debating Middle Eastern lands – ya’ just can’t touch it.

    “America is not a racist nation,…”

    I hope not, Eric. I sincerely and deeply hope not.


  4. Tim Budd says:

    J.McJones makes a good point – it is what my firnd used to call the iron fist aof Adam Smith. The argiment becomes what level of funding we want to support the modifying factors to the invisible hand – i.e. the social welfare system. Take a look at governemt spending as a percentage of GPD since WW2.

  5. Tim Budd says:

    firnd, friend, who’s spellchecking? ;-}

  6. Tom Autry says:

    Good article Eric.

    An old quote that has turned into an axiom, “you can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time. But you can’t fool all the people all of the time”.

    One can support a potential leader for any number of reasons. One can refuse to support a potential leader for any number of reasons.

    Barak is trying to convince people he is presidential. He doesn’t have enough motor. He is trying to fool all the people all of the time.

    John is not trying to fool any one.

    I don’t want my grandchildren forced to convert to Islam, and
    I don’t want to send any more of my money to Washington.

    Soldier on.

    Tom Autry,

  7. jweaver says:

    Is Barack Obama Someone We Can Trust?

    As I read the coverage that Obama gets, some even by those that are opposed to him it seems that there are few that are truly ready to tackle the issues. We are told that he is a Christian. Well what does that mean? Is he a conservative Christian or is he a leftist Christian that subscribes to the National Council of Churches. Does he believe the bible, or does emotion and fairness rule his heart. Does he support Justice or does he endorse compassion? These are the real questions one needs to ask.
    Another question, does Obama recognize evil? Or does he believe in moral relativism? Does feel an obligation to help free people or does he believe that tyrants of the world are the same as freely elected leaders. Some of these we know the answers to. Obama is morally unfit for office as are many leftists. His rhetoric shows that he does not have a grasp on these issues. His willingness to not set pre-conditions to meet with tyrants shows that he does not see them as tainted which speaks to his accepting evil or refusing to see evil in our midst. These failures in others goes a long way in explaining our failures leading up to 9/11.
    Next, let us look at Obama’s past. He has a complicated and most likely illegal relationship wit Tony Rezko and the Chicago machine. Our press is not covering the story, but foreign media is and Obama himself has uttered that “mistakes have been made”, yet he will not elaborate on the issue. Obama has funny ties to crime and it needs a full explanation. Obama is close friends with Domestic Terrorists like the Weather Underground. I want to know if he supports domestic terror and political murder. His offices have had Che photos, he belongs to a racist church, he was on the board of a anti-Israeli foundation. Now all of these issues may have explanations, but taken as a whole, Obama is a deeply flawed leftist and the country needs to know these answers.

  8. Eagle6 says:

    JWeaver addresses some key points and makes valid arguments. I don’t mean to be inflammatory, but let’s put this “negotiation with tyrants and evil people” into perspective… would he be so willing to negotiate and find common ground with KKK members? They claim to be Christians, too….

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