Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Far right out for McCain, part 2

Another foaming-at-the-mouth attack (1) on John McCain, by Dr. James Dobson, the founder and chairman of Focus on Family (2).

The good doctor was apparently expressing his own views, according to a spokesman for Focus on Family, who then added:
He made it as a private citizen, and it reflects his personal opinion of Sen.
McCain's candidacy and record. People can read into it what they like; all I see
is his own personal 'straight talk' regarding why he can't vote for one
candidate. (3)
Which is about as clear an invitation to interpret it as the Focus on Family position as you could wish for.

Dobson says he is "convinced Sen. McCain is not a conservative" (3). This is a give away. It isn't about whether or not he is a conservative. It is whether or not he's the sort of conservative that Dobson, his organisation, and the religious right, want to see leading the party. In other words, McCain doesn't fit with the forces that control the Republican party - the weird alliance of religious fundamentalists and neo-con libertarians who have worked together to exclude the likes of McCain.

McCain's been the victim of this sort of smearing before, when he was facing off against Bush in the 2000 primaries, and the rumour was spread that he had a 'black baby' (4). The same sort of dirty tricks were then used agains John Kerry in 2004, with attacks on his integrity and courage. You may recall Kerry was running against a coward who spent Vietnam shirking his home front duties.

Smears were effective then, but it seems less so this time around, perhaps because McCain is more alert to dirty tricks, and perhaps because the Republican voters - the people that the religious oligarchs and free market fundamentalists are trying to pretend don't exist - are finally sick of seeing their party being used as a vehicle for extremists and special interests to hold on to power. And perhaps they are disgusted at the false attacks on men like McCain and Kerry, who did what American tradition dictates brave, honest men are do - joining up to defend their country. Nothing is more in tune with the Republican values cherished by the fustrated majority of Republicans out there, who have been silenced and betrayed by the forces controlling their party. Hopefully, their voice will be heard today.
1 - 'Dr. Dobson: ' I Cannot, and Will Not, Vote for McCain',' unattributed article on Citizenlnk, 5th of February, 2008.
(
http://www.citizenlink.org/CLtopstories/A000006444.cfm)
2 - As per the Focus on Family website, as viewed 6th of February, 2008. (http://www.focusonthefamily.com/press/focusvoices/A000000025.cfm)
3 - As per #1, above.
4 - Breif details of the smear from Wikipedia (as of 6th of February, 2008): 'Whisper campaign: use in politics' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whisper_campaign#Use_in_politics). Or just google 'McCain black baby.'

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