by Mark Scheinbaum
American Reporter Correspondent
Angel Fire, N.M.
July 2, 2008
OBAMA, YOU'RE LOSING ME!
BOCA RATON, Fla., July 2, 2008 -- Dear Sen.Obama: Thanks for repudiating Gen. Wesley Clark's stupid comments regarding John McCain's military service and preparedness to be Commander in Chief. I really don't care about your apologies.
Hello? Anybody home upstairs? This is Spring training for the most important try-out of your life!
Senator, ironically, just this morning I defended you in an email to my dearest friend. He had forwarded a shabbily edited and badly camouflaged hit piece against you. It was less false and racist and hateful than some, but it hammered at the "is it really true" points about your dad, stepdad, mom, grandparents, grandmother, their tribal attire in Africa, etc.
Keep in mind that I told my buddy - knowing his personality - that it is curious that having millionaire trust fund babies who never worked a grown-up job in their lives (Bush I and Bush II to a lesser extent) elected president is bad in his view.
Now, having a multiracial, multicultural, multi-ethnic kid from Chicago from a dysfunctional and oft-uprooted family overcome his obstacles, make it to the United States Senate, and offer himself to the nation - that is somehow bad also. So in the minds of some skeptics, all politics are "bad."
Here is the deal: I liked the way you handled some of the grassroots slurs, the media attacks, and your resilient good nature and when needed strength against the Clinton machine, and you showed it in a grueling primary campaign.
The fact is that even some Wall Street Republicans saw Iowa, New Hampshire and beyond as a "test" of Oval Office management style and demeanor in which you acquitted yourself well. Now the stakes have been bumped up a notch.
Every ridiculous political hack and talking head who you allow to "defend" you unchallenged - Gen. Clark, Donna Brazile, James Carville, Terry MacAuliffe etc - reflects poorly upon you.
This is Spring training. How you lead your team, how you execute the fundamentals will determine whether or not the American people call you up to the "Show" for the major league prize in November.
Let me help you through these tough times. Read and absorb. This is especially important because it does not come from some backwoods leatherneck who stormed a beach, but from an obese couch potato who has done nothing for his nation. One son is in Iraq, one served 17 months in Iraq, a daughter spent a year in AmeriCorps, my dad was at Normandy, my grandfather was in World War I, and I conquered the marital foe in the Battle of "Pass the Remote."
The most inept dogface, the most snake-bit POW captured on his first day in battle, the lowest private in a storage depot in Fayetteville, San Diego, Anchorage, Fort Dix, Ramstein, or South Korea - all of them, by taking the oath and putting on the uniform, have done more in a proactive way to preserve and protect this nation than the average American.
No American without an honorable discharge from military service is less an American than any veteran. But I'll be damned if I embrace the Wesley Clark notion that any veteran - even a homeless one on the corner with a cup - could ever be an inferior patriot to any other citizen.
The fact that an Annapolis graduate who served his nation and had five years in a Vietnamese hell-hole to reflect on life, love, death, politics, and fate - and then served in the Senate as a recognized foreign policy and military authority - sure as heck has a leg up on Oprah or Lou Dobbs when it comes to commanding over military men and women.
I disagree with Sen. McCain on many domestic and some foreign policy issues.
My political pendulum was swinging towards the Obama camp as a reaction to the Cheney neocons who not only lied to the American people, but probably lied with premeditation. "Conservatives" have spent billions on corrupt Iraqi officials and held secret oil negotiations as part of an ill-fated energy non-program. My tax dollars subsidize Iraqis buying gasoline!
Yet, one campaign miscue after another, and the fact that I don't believe John McCain would ever do anything to intentionally cut the moral or equipment "legs" out from under our men and women in uniform or our veterans, made me hesitate. Would John McCain, the honorable man, be a greater leader for the nation than Barack Obama, the orator and young and appealing phenom of change?
Possibly, but the GOP's baggage train works against McCain.
Now comes Gen. Wesley Clark, the citizen-soldier who wanted to be President himself in 2004.
Wes Clark and his demeaning crack about McCain shook me from my revelry in my lifelong Democratic registration to remind me just what jerks some politically correct and touchy-feely Democrats really are.
Slam McCain on his legislative record, his savings and loan buddies, his possible Supreme Court choices, or his policy papers. K
But keep slamming him on his "lack" of preparedness as commander-in-chief, and I just might vote for McCain and drag a few thousand pals with me.