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Below are the two final essays to be posted on Allegiance and Duty Betrayed. The first one is written by a friend -- screen name 'Euro-American Scum' -- who, over the past four years, has been the most faithful essayist here. He has written about everything from his pilgrimage to Normandy in 2004 to take part in the 60th–year commemoration of the invasion, to his memories of his tour in Vietnam. His dedication to America’s founding principles ... and those who have sacrificed to preserve them over the past 200+ years ... is unequaled. Thank you, E-A-S. It has been a privilege to include your writing here, and it is a privilege to call you my friend.

The second essay is my own farewell. And with it I thank all of the many regular visitors, and those who may have only dropped in occasionally, for coming here. I hope you learned something. I hope a seed or two was planted. But, even if not, I thank you for stopping by ... 25 March, 2010


When You’re Up to Your Neck in Quicksand,
You Don’t Ignore a Rope


I received two messages, from two patriot friends, over the last few days. I’d like to share their expressions of concern with you, and then offer my response, in the hopes that many of you will see things as I do. If not, I do not question your patriotism (just as I do not question my friends’). We are simply looking at perhaps the most serious election-related decision of our lives from different perspectives.

My friends’ comments:

(1) Do any of you really think that Sarah Palin will have a strong influence on McCain? Why or are you just wishing and hoping? How many old men do you know who have actually changed their life long held opinions at the wishes of a coworker? I can't think of a single one.

(2) To compare McCain to Ronald Reagan is about as far out as it gets. Reagan was a consistent conservative throughout his public life and had the track record to back it up. McCain is nothing of the sort.

I replied, in part, as follows:

Unless we’re reading incredibly different news/editorial sources, I have not heard anyone compare McCain to Reagan. And certainly no one I know has, otherwise I would have questioned their sanity.

McCain is still the turncoat he has always been. He is still a go-along-to-get-along RINO.

But his running mate is not.

I wrote on my weblog just a few weeks ago, regarding casting a vote for John McCain on November 4th:

Whether Obama or McCain occupies the White House for the next four years, America is in for a rude awakening. I would prefer that a liberal democrat/avowed Marxist be blamed for the geopolitical/economic earthquakes that are looming over the horizon. At least that way we will have the whisper of a hope that a genuine conservative may be able to eventually take the reins and pick up the pieces.

I could not, in good conscience, cast a vote for a Marxist. But neither will I continue to vote for those who are willing to consistently compromise with the evil ideology of the left. Such imposters have succeeded in re-defining my party, handcuffing their genuine republican counterparts, and corrupting my government beyond recognition. And if an avowed anti-American Marxist must damage our beloved republic for four years in order for the republican party to recognize that it had better return to its roots, then that may well be the terrible price we must pay in order to embark on that long-overdue journey.

I will no longer play an active role in the hijacking of the republican party ... or the suicide of our beloved republic. I'll leave the heartbreak of writing her epitaph to others.

I’ll not retract that statement. But that opinion was written before McCain’s announcement of Sarah Palin as his running mate.

The best of the Republicans vying for the top spot were eliminated long ago (primary among them being Duncan Hunter, but other lesser patriots who would have been a significantly better pick than McCain bit the dust early on as well). Why? Because they lacked charisma. Not that McCain has any, mind you. But he has other factors working in his favor – namely the consistent willingness of the party to compromise, and to abandon its foundations.

As a result, genuine conservatives need to appeal to the voting public – and what the voting public values is superficiality, since they lack the interest or background knowledge to deal with anything involving depth of character or belief. Thus the power of Oprah Winfrey in actually playing a role in the outcome of November’s election.

Charisma has absolutely nothing to do with leadership ability, or honesty, or a patriot’s heart. But, pathetically, it’s what gets people elected in modern America -- or what passes for America these days.

Sarah Palin possesses all of the above – leadership ability, honesty, a patriot’s heart, and charisma. I prefer to elect leaders without the latter, but, considering today’s political landscape and the ignorance and superficiality of the American electorate (and therefore the necessity of charisma), I can overlook its distasteful presence, if the other traits are present.

I see her as our last best hope. She is indeed in the mold of Reagan. I’m not saying she’ll be another Reagan. That entirely depends upon how moving up the political ladder dilutes her principles, and how much the powers that be will allow her to genuinely govern (assuming she attains the vice presidency, and beyond). And both of those influences can, over time, render her current Reaganesque beliefs and accomplishments null and void.

Thus my reason for being willing to support McCain/Palin. There is no one else electable on the horizon who offers us any hope of a return to representative republican, Constitution-based government. And if I have to vote to put a turncoat in the oval office, in order to get a potential Reagan in the second spot, then so be it. I see this as our last opportunity. We’re up to our necks in quicksand. And we're being bombarded from all sides with empty promises that help is on the way. If I see a real rope, attached to a real person who wants to pull me to safety, no matter who is standing in front of her, I'm going to grab on.

I don’t care the level of government in which one serves. It is all self-perpetuating, until someone with backbone steps in to apply the brakes. Someone rarely does. Sarah Palin has, and continues to do so – on the local level, and on the state level. And she intends to do so (as far as the vice presidency will allow) on the federal level.

I will not debate you about John McCain, simply because I believe we would be occupying the same side with no one to answer us. Perhaps you believe that his sitting on the top spot, with Palin second in command, renders the election meaningless to us patriots. There we may disagree. I see the future of our republic as so bleak that I am willing to hang onto a glimmer of future Reaganesque leadership, even if it means placing an imposter into the presidency for the time being.

~ joanie


robmaroni said...

I see this as our last opportunity. We’re up to our necks in quicksand. And we're being bombarded from all sides with empty promises that help is on the way. If I see a real rope, attached to a real person who wants to pull me to safety, no matter who is standing in front of her, I'm going to grab on.

I wish that would fit on a bumper sticker. ;)

Excellent as always, Joanie.

Anonymous said...

I wish that would fit on a bumper sticker. ;)

Hell, buy a bumper extension. It'd be worth it!

john galt said...

You're right, Joanie. And you always say it so well. ;)

marcus aurelius said...

Well said, Joanie. Like you, I didn't think I could vote for McCain before he announced his choice for VP. Now I will be voting for the Republican ticket. I don't ascribe to the doctrine of cutting off one's nose to spite one's face.

calbrindisi said...

Does the Angry Left really want to launch a culture war over Sarah Palin? Fine. Lock and load.

From Palin's a Fighter Worth Fighting For (good read)

3timesalady said...

Thanks for another great column. I'm going to show it to some friends who are whining about McCain and dragging their feet.

Anonymous said...

I see the future of our republic as so bleak that I am willing to hang onto a glimmer of future Reaganesque leadership, even if it means placing an imposter into the presidency for the time being.

My thoughts EXACTLY.

johnsteever said...

I see this as our last opportunity. We’re up to our necks in quicksand. And we're being bombarded from all sides with empty promises that help is on the way. If I see a real rope, attached to a real person who wants to pull me to safety, no matter who is standing in front of her, I'm going to grab on.

The absolute best analogy I've heard.

John Cooper said...

I hadn't been planning on voting for McCain, but I will now since Sarah is onboard.

A McCain administration is going to throw a wet blanket on this euphoria we're experiencing at the moment - open borders...global warming...no drilling in ANWR...etc. - but I'm looking ahead to 2012 and President Palin.

It's amazing how the older we get, the more patient we get. Seems like it should be the other way around, doesn't it.

fascismisyourworstenemy said...

I agree with it all- from the superficial voters, to the charisma, to the quicksand, to the rope. I'm grabbin' it too.

lori_gmeiner said...

Unless there’s a clear answer, ‘change’ becomes a pointless soundbite which risks creating an impression of yet more political sleight of hand.
This is the trap into which Barack Obama has fallen. Yes, he has amazing gifts of charisma and oratory; along with his youth and black ancestry, this all helps create the impression that he is an outsider and embodies a fresh start.

But, on closer inspection, he looks suspiciously like yet more of the same old same old. The way he changes his political message to fit the audience he is addressing sits ill with his pitch to represent a new politics of integrity.

And his voting record and positions on social issues place him firmly among the Left-wing elite which has waged such devastating war upon the West’s moral values.

By contrast, Palin has a very strong sense of right and wrong rooted in her evangelical Christian faith. Perversely, this damns her in the eyes of the Left as the ‘hard Right’.

This is clearly absurd: she is a working mother of five who has shown herself as capable of felling Big Oil and other political cartels against the public interest as shooting moose.
Moreover, her real achievement is to do what the Left assumed was utterly impossible: she makes social conservatism seem attractive.

From Palin By Comparison

Anonymous said...

From “McCain Plans New Palin Rollout”:

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will speak at her son’s Army deployment ceremony on 9/11 and spend two days with ABC News crews later this week as part of a McCain campaign plan to increase Americans’ comfort with her as a strong leader.


cw-patriot said...

Rob, John, Marcus, 3times, fascism,

Thanks, all, for the kind words. Glad to hear that the announcement of Palin has caused you, too, to support the ticket.

~ joanie

cw-patriot said...

Cal Brindisi,

Thank you (thank you thank you) for the link to that excellent article -- one of the best Palin-focused articles I've read.

Those of you who haven't read it, I urge you to ( Palin's a Fighter Worth Fighting For).

Excellent excerpt:

If the GOP was the party only of Mitt Romney, of Rudy Giuliani, of George W. Bush and, indeed, of John McCain, who could blame disillusioned conservatives for sitting out this race? The Republicans deserve to lose this year.

But now we know that it's also the party of Sarah Palin, the kind of conservative that Barack Obama pitied earlier this year as "clinging" to her God, her guns and her traditions because she doesn't know any better. In her convention speech, Ms. Palin threw his condescension back in his face.

She's a fighter, this one. And worth fighting for. Come what may in November, we now know what the future of the GOP and the conservative movement looks like.

It looks like a straight-shooting, churchgoing populist married to a union man. It looks like a mom standing on stage before a national audience, with her handicapped infant resting on her shoulder, unbowed and triumphant. It looks like a family faithful to its members in their weakness and failure – one that does the right thing by its own, even if it's the hard thing.

Let's be clear about this last point. For Barack Obama, Bristol Palin's baby is a punishment, something he's said he wouldn't wish on his own daughter. Sarah Palin plainly and admirably doesn't see it that way. That's the difference between life and death. The cultural and class politics of that choice matters beyond abortion, as enraged liberals reminded us last week.

Message received. Game on.

~ joanie

cw-patriot said...

A related aside:

I have been corresponding, both regularly and occasionally, with perhaps two dozen conservative bloggers for a long time. All of them are staunch supporters of conservative values and foundations, and I have rarely, if ever, disagreed on any major issues with any of them.

The Sarah Palin thing is turning out to be quite different. A small handful (two or three) of these people (no one on this thread) appear to be grasping at straws in an attempt to discredit her candidacy. If I attempt to alleviate their concerns on one issue, yet another one rears its head.

As a result, I am beginning to wonder whether this handful of people whom I had considered fair-minded, deeply patriotic men (and they are all men), harbor a hidden (or perhaps not-so-hidden) desire to deprive a conservative woman from holding high office.

It's a disquieting possibility, to say the least.

I pray that I am wrong. But their tenacity in attempting to uncover chinks in her armor can't help but cause me to wonder. Time will tell ...

~ joanie

Anonymous said...

I agree with everything you wrote. I also agree with Jim Rogers' quote in your "Quote of the Month."