Bear season

How is it possible that the two states in which I’ve lived the longest — Nevada and Alaska — also boast some of the nuttiest female politicians? Now they’re teaming up! That’s right, senatorial candidate Sharron Angle and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin are buddies! Or, at least, Palin is ready to stump for Angle, according to the Daily Caller. *Sigh*

This is just the latest in a theme for Palin, who’s really playing up her “Mama Grizzlies” routine. I’m a woman. I’m now a mom. I’m even from Wasilla, Alaska. And I’m here to tell you, Palin does not speak for me. Actually, there’s a whole lot of folks who are saying just that…on a new Emily’s List campaign to show the power of the opposing voices. So add your name to the list! (Incidentally, I thought Chuck Todd’s Today Show characterization of the campaign as that of a “pro-abortion” women’s group to be a bit reductionist and awkward.)

But let’s get back to Angle for a moment — because despite my lack of posting, I’m very much paying attention. (Although, let me apologize up front that I didn’t have time to put links on everything. Maybe some nice readers will put them in comments for me.)

First of all, I get where her campaign strategists are going with these new “folksy” faux-town-hall type ads. She’s trying to directly negate the very effective Reid campaign ads that show Angle saying to a crowd that it would not be her job as a senator to create new jobs (note to Angle: that’s bad messaging to a state hit hardest by this crappy economy).  Love her or hate her: There’s no denying that was a bad idea to say those words in public, to a crowd, on tape. In fact, she doesn’t seem to have any idea what is good to say during a heated campaign — other than “no comment.” And, in my opinion, the ads just highlight this. To me, they make her look even more like a puppet of the Tea Party and desperate to change the script Reid’s team has set. While Reid’s ad depicts an actual town hall meeting, where she stated what seems to be her real opinion about creating jobs. The scripted, well-lit Angle ads are so obviously false — the nods of agreement from the Everyman (and are they all white?) crowd. And even in an ad where she knows the script (and, perhaps, is reading off cue cards), she seems like she has no idea where she is or what she is talking about. Even GW knew how to look into the camera and wink with conviction.

Now, let’s talk about the substance of all this ad-chatter. Angle has publicly stated (while talking into a microphone and knowingly recorded for public use) that she thinks social security is essentially welfare. She’s said that unemployment benefits “spoil” the out-of-work. She’s said it’s not a senator’s job to create jobs and she would not have used a “slush fund” (a weird way to put asking banks to unfreeze assets so construction could continue, which is what Reid did) to save City Center — a multi-billion-dollar project that was the biggest of its kind in the world and created thousands of jobs (directly and indirectly) in Las Vegas. These are all things that have come directly from her, not the Reid spin machine (although they are using them expertly, in my opinion). Now, now she’s back-tracking and saying that she wants to save social security from being raided (by big-bad government types like Reid, I presume). Well, why worry about it being raided if you think it’s just welfare (which also begs the question why welfare is such a derogatory term). Huh, I think in the GW days Republicans called that flip-flopping.

Where I will give Angle’s team points is that they are hitting back pretty hard with this new ad about downward property values. Well played. The bad housing market is directly related to the Great Recession we’re in. (And can we just pause for a moment and note how stupid it is that we’re still calling it a recession. By definition, it is a depression. Look it up.) People in Nevada, particularly Las Vegas and Reno have been hit very hard by this economy. Las Vegas has routinely been noted as one of the top five cities in America hit hardest by this recession in housing market, foreclosures, unemployment — by all indicators. So, it doesn’t take much to remind us that things are sucking pretty hard right now. And I’m sure there are plenty of people mad at anyone who’s been in power during the downturn, regardless of party. What I think is disingenuous is to say that Reid was directly responsible for what happened. If you want to point fingers at who is to blame, you need to go back to Bush No. 1 and President Clinton for deregulations to the credit and banking systems. These were only worsened by eight years of failed economic policies by Bush No. 2. This is their legacy, even though nearly half of all Americans incorrectly think it came from the Obama administration. So, points for trying Angle camp, but your message is a complete delusion of the facts.

Not that any of that is going to stop Angle, Palin and the rest of their lot from blowing smoke up so many asses. At this point, I’m just waiting for the air to clear in November.

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