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A September 10 Election -- Why National Security Still Matters

Barack Obama's commanding lead in the polls began as a result of the financial crisis which reached critical mass a few weeks ago. Instead of telling voters what Democrats had done that led to the problems at Fannie and Freddie and sub-prime mortgages, McCain rushed to Washington to sign onto a big government bailout. Republicans had not only a strong case to make against Democrats on the issue, but had video from the likes of Barney Frank and others saying there was no problem and that more loans should be made to those who couldn't afford them. McCain had some amazing quotes from a Senate speech he made in 2005 advocating for legislation to address the problems and warning of what would happen if it was not addressed. Democrats killed that legislation. It was not a case of he said/he said. McCain had video and on the record statements to make his case (and which would have made some amazing campaign ads, to boot).

McCain blew it big time by not making that case early and often and by going along with the same big government bailout that Obama supported. He could have still made the economy work to his advantage by making some points about how national security, obviously his strong issue, influences the economy. It may be too late now, but there is still a strong argument there to be made.

The economy is tied to national security. Anyone who doubts that just needs to be reminded of what the stock market did following the 9/11 attacks. Joe Biden said he believes there will be a generated international crisis in Obama's first months in office to "test" him and he went on to say that many will question Obama's response to that crisis. Like them or not, the actions of the Bush administration have resulted in not one terrorist attack on U.S. soil since 9/11/01. No one would have dreamed that was possible on September 12, 2001.

Most people now take that for granted. When I recently attended the state fair not only was my backpack not checked, I didn't even see a security guard when I entered the gates. I thought back on October 2001 and how thoroughly everything we took into the fairgrounds was searched. At the airport we are at least still checked almost as well as we were immediately following the 9/11 attacks, but I know I don't really think much about it anymore. I just see it as routine without really giving much thought to it as I did when the new shoe checks and other new rules were first instituted. I no longer think about where the exits are as soon as I enter a public event as I did in the first years following 9/11. I suspect that most are like me in that respect and in many ways are now living in a September 10 state of mind. So far, this has been a September 10 election.

Even though many might not give it much thought anymore, we cannot risk another terrorist attack at this time. Imagine what it would do to our already fragile and volatile markets. What our leaders do to prevent future attacks falls under national security, where Republicans still have a definite advantage.

Obama did not believe the surge would work. He said we could not win in Iraq. Harry Reid said we had already lost. If Obama had been president two years ago he would have withdrawn our troops in defeat and disgrace and the country of Iraq would now be a haven for terrorists and al Qaeda and Iran would have a huge victory to wave to the world. What happens in Iraq and in the entire world influences our economy in the stock market and in oil prices, among other areas. On policy regarding Iraq, Iran, Pakistan and other hot spots, Barack Obama is very vulnerable, but John McCain appears to have barely made an effort to remind voters of that these past few weeks.

The economy has emerged as the overriding issue over the past month, but it did not have to be a winning issue for Barack Obama. John McCain had history and facts regarding the sub-prime crisis on his side. He also could have made the case that his strength on national security was important to the economic well being of our country by reminding voters what another terrorist attack on U.S. soil would do to the economy. I don't know why he has not made that case, and don't know whether or not it is too late to help him in the polls at this late date, but I hope he will make that argument this final week because the voters should make their decisions considering everything that will affect their families and their futures. So far, between Obama's huge ad buys and the narrative the media has told, the voters have not gotten everything they need on which to base an informed decision.

Update: They don't tie it to the economy by reminding voters what a terrorist attack would do to the market, but they are talking about national security and that is good news.


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Comments (13)

The best candidate for the ... (Below threshold)
yihdego:

The best candidate for the job cannot be right once. McCain's foreign policy credentials are boiling down to the surge in all of his addresses, it'll take more than one move to convince me.

Yes I believed we shouldn't have gone to war to Iraq and that is all I need to hear about Obama and I doubt any spin a republican could attempt would dissuade voters who agree with me. The surge cannot take away the impact of McCain's decision to invade Iraq on an email summary of an intelligence report.

Again this boils down to the voters deciding if they believe diplomacy or military force is where they plan to take the country. Choice is as simple as that on foreign policy.

For me, McCain did not need... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

For me, McCain did not need to point fingers on the crisis in the economy. For a disaster of this magnitude and no Democrats calling for special hearings spectacle (and the Lehman Brothers hearings are a farce) before the elections is all one needs to know where most of the blame lies. If a person hasn't picked up on this much, he/she not going to listen to McCain. Any such truths by him would only be presented in a manner to make him look angry. You know, the "distraction" thing BHO likes to fall back on.

If there's one moment that ... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

If there's one moment that cost McCain a high price in his campaign it's when he suspended his campaign to do whatever. The first thought that crossed my mind, and I expect that of many other voters, was this is the same stunt H. Ross Perot pulled. Note to any future candidate, suspending your campaign for any reason other than you are withdrawing, is a bad idea. No one was impressed and it played into the hands of Obama.

That said, I'm voting for McCain because he had the foresight and military experience to support Bush in taking out Saddam and bringing hope and freedom to a part of the world that has seen little of either in the last hundred years or more.

It's not that Saddam had WMD, it's that Saddam was capable of ordering their use. You have to be a special kind of SOB to use chemical weapons on your own civilian population. We didn't know it at the time, but it's not surprising that Saddam was able to bribed corrupt UN, Russian and French officials in order to put an end to UN sanctions. He was close to doing just that and by now Saddam would have rebuilt much of his military with billions of oil dollars. Now some people think it was a mistake to invade Iraq, but if we had followed their advise the mass murderer Saddam and his sadistic sons would be free to pursue their vendetta against the U.S. for their humiliating defeated in the first gulf war. Only fools think men like Saddam can be reasoned with or trusted. His own son in-law paid for that mistake with his head.

The military response to Al... (Below threshold)

The military response to Al Qaeda's 9/11 attack is the reason WHY we have not had another attack upon US soil since. The diplomatic 'response' yihdego and many others advocate will in time, result in a duplication in the US of Israel's ongoing and eternal bomb attacks.

Despite Israel's best efforts to accommodate the Palestinian's aspirations (without fatally undermining Israel's security) it has all been for naught. That is because the POINT of Palestinian 'aspirations' is the elimination of the State of Israel.

Radically violent, fundamentalist nutjobs WILL perceive a 'diplomatic' response as an INVITATION to eventual victory. They will INCREASE their violence within the US.

Islamic terrorists don't want to talk, or negotiate. They want a world where democracy and equal rights don't exist. NOTHING LESS will suffice.

Trying to 'talk' to a bully invariably results in escalating violence because psychologically, the 'bully' only perceives others as fellow predators or victims.

Liberal advocacy of diplomacy and negotiation with the latest crop of the Hitler and Stalins' of the world, in a time when WMD exist, is to advocate a 'policy' divorced from the reality of the threat that we face.

The innocent deaths that will surely result, potentially in the millions, will be directly attributable to the willful blindness of the yihdego's of the world.

But in typical pacifistic denial they will refuse to accept the responsibility for the 'policies' they advocate because personal responsibility is an 'inconvenient truth' best avoided.

Again this boils d... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:
Again this boils down to the voters deciding if they believe diplomacy or military force is where they plan to take the country. Choice is as simple as that on foreign policy.

If even Libyan Leader Muammar Gaddafi says Obama is naive about mid-east conflict, that should tell you something. His speech here also confirms Scandinavian and European infiltration which should be a concern, and not a "scare tactic" to be ignored.

"Europe and the U.S. Should Agree to Become Islamic or Declare War on the Muslims."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LNUqLztI4mQ

It tells us that you pay at... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

It tells us that you pay attention to Muammar Gaddafi and not much else.

it'll take more than one... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:

it'll take more than one move to convince me.

Apparently, one move is sufficient for you as long as it's Obama...

Yes I believed we shouldn't have gone to war to Iraq and that is all I need to hear about Obama

It tells us that y... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:
It tells us that you pay attention to Muammar Gaddafi and not much else.

Yes, you really are that stupid and just want "to pick a fight". It's now time for your juice box, then your nappy.

hyper, before you go sleepy... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:

hyper, before you go sleepy, here is more for you to ignore:

Barack Obama Lies To America
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H64yKJhB528
Obama-Odinga-Rezko-Ayers-Auchi-Saddam Hussein
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LIe4d9Nmg9k
Inconvenience of Truth prt 4 Obama, Odinga, Africa GENOCIDE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6vBRJIBp2I

I know you won't pay attention, hyper, but for what it's worth...why do you keep commenting here? Is your ego that imbalanced?

Oh, and here is another rem... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:

Oh, and here is another reminder for the idiots that say Obama is not associated with ACORN

OBAMA CAUGHT SAYING ACORN AND FRIENDS WILL SHAPE HIS PRESIDENTIAL AGENDA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8vJcVgJhNaU

No, because I do enjoy hear... (Below threshold)
hyperbolist:

No, because I do enjoy hearing what conservatives have to say about certain things; I've enjoyed firsthand the descent of the Republican party into temporary oblivion; and I like to tell idiots like you that you're wrong on the issues, outside the mainstream, and hurtling towards irrelevance at breakneck speed.

Good night! Off to see a friend's newborn baby. I got her a Johnny Cash one-piece jumper.

The surge is a specific str... (Below threshold)
yihdego:

The surge is a specific strategy, Obama's demeanor, decision making and foreign policy is a quality he carries everyday.

The strategy deployed by Bush and Cheney has failed. It has failed to destroy al Qaeda, except in a country, Iraq, where their presence was minimal before the US invasion. It has empowered Iran, allowed al Qaeda to regroup in Pakistan, made the next vast generation of Muslims loathe America, and imperiled our alliances. We need smarter leadership of the war: balancing force with diplomacy, hard power with better p.r., deploying strategy rather than mere tactics, and self-confidence rather than a bunker mentality.

Again clarifying what I meant about supporting Obama's Iraq stance.

"and I like to tell idiots ... (Below threshold)
LaMedusa:

"and I like to tell idiots like you that you're wrong on the issues, outside the mainstream, and hurtling towards irrelevance at breakneck speed."

hyper, a simple "yes, I have an imbalanced ego" would have sufficed.




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