Monday, November 03, 2008

Routines Revisited

With many pundits, and wannabes in the blogosphere, citing Governor Sarah Palin's lack of experience for high office, a story recently published in the Los Angeles Times (09/06/2008) should put those concerns to rest. Here at mwbh, we recently linked to a piece by our Pertinacious Papist on the same subject. But it bears repeating.

As governor, Palin oversees military units whose duties include serving overseas, search-and-rescue missions across the state's vast landscape and manning key elements of the U.S. missile defense system at Ft Greely... The Alaska National Guard is unusual in that its jobs include manning part of the US missile defense system. The 49th Missile Defense Battalion works on interceptor missiles designed to shoot down intercontinental missiles.

The 49th is unique in that it is the only National Guard unit on permanent active duty. (Even those units assigned to Iraq are on temporary duty.) As commander-in-chief of the Alaska National Guard, and therefore this unit, the Governor of Alaska is briefed regularly on highly classified matters of national security, including counter-terrorism. This would require a higher security rating than any currently held by either candidate of the Democratic Party.

While the Governor has made references to occasional border incidents with Russia and her state -- accidental flyovers, that sort of thing -- she has chosen not to make much of her security rating. There's a reason for that. People with highly-classified security ratings do not, as a matter of routine, brag about them. Living here in DC as long as I have, I've known people who have worked for the CIA, even the NSA, who will never mention even the most mundane detail of their work. Not even that they work for the CIA or the NSA. (Now that I mention it, I don't remember how they usually respond when asked what they do.)

Critics have cited one-on-one interviews where Governor Palin supposedly gave a less-than-stellar performance. They ignore her holding her own against her Democratic opponent in the vice-presidential debate. And yet, as our pertinacious professor has pointed out: "She can be entrusted with our national security, because she already is."

There are many of you who see Palin's supposed "inexperience" as an impediment to her being "a heartbeat away" from the Presidency. You might still cling to this notion in light of the above. Yet you have no qualms about voting for a man, who began running for President only a few months in the United States Senate, who previously had what he himself has admitted was an unremarkable tenure in the Illinois legislature, and who cannot begin to cite such experience on his resume, again as described above.

And so, the impertinent question is asked again: what does this say about you?

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