Ending the chokehold that both political parties have had on a system that regular people once felt helpless about changing or affecting requires a discussion of how the insider game hurts the regular guy regardless of which side of the aisle he or she sits. Sarah Palin effectively started that discussion and gave it a voice when she articulated clearly how lobbyists and good ole boys from both parties affect legislation in their favor by defining the difference between crony capitalism and true free market principles during her speech in Iowa over Labor Day weekend. Her ability to get the GOP candidates to start talking the talk may work from outside the arena, but expecting them to walk the walk is a bit more precarious.
Regardless of how effective Governor Palin is as a spokesperson for a brand of conservatism shared by the common man and the Tea Party, one has to wonder if any of the other candidates are actually able to implement that brand through executive action and use of the presidential bully pulpit.
The GOP candidates are fine people who are willing to serve their country in this time of dire economic straights. They share the goal of unseating a president who presides over the ever growing soft tyranny of an out of control government that expands continuously at a cost way beyond its ability to do so. With the exception of Herman Cain, all have cut their teeth and built on their experience playing by a set of political rules that were once thought of as written in stone. With the exception of Sarah Palin, none have actually succeeded in government by not playing by those rules.
One can't totally fault any of the candidates for having to "play the game." Prior to Palin, it was rare to see a candidate obtain political office by unseating the establishment (the lobbyists, the special interests and the people to whom favors were owed). Traditional political victory is defined as one party defeating another. The lobbyists, consultants and the establishment win either way (at worst, they take turns holding influence as the parties trade places through electoral wins and losses). Herein lies the heart of Palinism: that it no longer has to be this way and a new model for political victory can be crafted by candidates who decide to run against the establishment and the media with the same vigor that traditional politicians run against the opposing political party.
This raises the question about whether Governor Palin is running or not. If she doesn't run, is she going to be able to continue affecting the debate without a title by radioing it in from the sideline? Can we really expect that President Romney, Perry or Bachmann will be clicking on Sarah Palin's Facebook page to get their daily briefings? Not to diminish the effect her Facebook notes have had on such key issues as Obamacare and the economy, it should be noted that as good as they are, they held more weight because of the perception that she was a potential candidate and that her ideas would garner her the support necessary to enact them.
If she doesn't run, she can continue to affect the debate as she suggested Monday night on Greta Van Susteren's show. However, conservatives are quietly discussing whether or not she will have the same level of clout as she has had over the past three years. One conservative blogger told me off the record that she is beginning to look at Rick Perry as a candidate since she is unsure of Palin's intentions.
This raises the question of how much influence Palin would have on the political process if a nominee other than herself moves forward. Would this nominee be as dedicated to Palin's ideas and their implementation as Palin herself would be? The best way to analogize this would be to ask Yankee fans if they would rather have Alex Rodriguez playing 3rd base or would they be okay with someone else who would try to hit as many homeruns as he does while he coached them from the dugout. And, would A-Rod's replacement draw as many fans and generate as much excitement as he does?
With all due respect to the Governor (and this writer will continue to emphasize the high degree of admiration and respect he has for her), she risks losing her captive audience by withdrawing her name from consideration. She also opens herself up to the criticism of those who have been crafting the meme that she has been doing all she's done in the last three years for the money.
Based upon informal discussions with fellow Palinistas, some would feel as if they would have spent their money and time in vain if she pulls the plug on them. Others would still continue to support her in a diehard fashion. This split would not bode well for her brand. Listening to Palin supporters turning on her and each other in the media will not be pleasant.
According to Yahoo:
"I'm getting kind of a kick out of this," Palin said on Fox News Monday night when host Greta Van Susteren asked a speech, making some statements about things that must be discussed, and then the very next day watching some of the candidates get out there and discuss what it was that we just talked about, like the corruption, the crony capitalism, the waste, the fraud, some of the things that are going on right now."This blogger can appreciate that she gets a kick out of seeing the other candidates running with her ideas. Yet, there are many who aren't getting a kick out of being unemployed or losing money because of the Obama economy. Nor are they getting much of a kick out of the other candidates. There are a lot of people also not getting a kick out of the fact that she's not in the race, on that debate stage, speaking for them and fighting for them in the arena.
For Palinism to work, she has to make it work. We can't expect someone else to implement her plan or motivate people the way only she can. I'm not trying to be rough on the Governor. If anything, it's this writer's perception of her greatness that drives the frustration which motivates me to to write this. Sarah Palin is a rare breed of leader. There has only been one other political leader in my lifetime that had what she has.
An army sits in their camps keeping their powder dry, cleaning their rhetorical weapons and preparing for a massive boots on the ground grass roots operation with air support from the more technologically savvy among us who can post youtube videos and blog posts that will get the message out to the American people. That army awaits their marching orders. To make this happen, they need Governor Palin to give them the go.
It's a big commitment. She has a family to consider. But, her country needs her. We are calling out to her.
Listening to those people yelling out her name, chasing her down for an autograph or a word with her after the Iowa speech is spine tingling. These are not people just looking for a keepsake. The tone in the cries of "Sarah!" has the intonation of that of people crying out for help. It's not a lazy cry for help. These are people who are willing to lift the car off the American body politic. But they need her to help. If she jumps in and helps, these people will pull muscles and rip tendons to help her move that car.
Contrary to what the media says, the Palin army is not a fan club. This is our lives. There are people who are suffering because of what the Obama administration is doing. This ain't no party. This ain't no disco. This ain't no foolin' around. The American dream is at stake. People's livelihoods are at stake. People's children's futures hang on the outcome of the 2012 elections.
For the diehard Palinista, removing Obama is not enough. Changing the way business is done in Washington is also a key component to that. We've spent decades frustrated by the inability to beat city hall. Now we have a shot to do it, and it can't be done without her.
There are many who believe that without Palin, ending crony capitalism and putting America back on a permanent track toward restoration and renewal can't happen. Anyone can beat Obama. Only one can implement the true vision needed to insure that something like Obama never happens again.
Governor Palin, there are still millions of us out here that want it to be that way; that want it to be a shining city on a hill. Candidate Palin, please step forward.
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