Greg Roach's Berkshires Blog
Friday, October 03, 2008
  Ssshhhh! Don't Tell the Senior Citizens
It seems the real mistake of last night was made by Palin's speechwriter:
Palin's final quote was from Ronald Reagan, warning that without vigilance, "you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children, and our children's children, what it once was like in America when men were free."

In fact, Reagan was not warning about a general lack of vigilance about freedom, he was warning what would happen if Medicare was enacted.
I wouldn't expect Palin to know this. Most of the Reagan fanatics have been revising history for years and the myth of Reagan is far more appealing than the reality. However, I would like to know if the speechwriter thought he/she could pull a fast one, or if he/she is incompetent?

Look for some hay to be made of this over the next couple of days.
Since you bring up revisionist history, I thought I would mention the point that jumped out at me more than any other.

Biden: “When we kicked — along with France, we kicked Hezbollah out of Lebanon, I said and Barack said, ‘Move NATO forces in there. Fill the vacuum, because if you don’t know — if you don’t, Hezbollah will control it.’”

This is an utter fabrication. This US/French victory over Hezbollah, kicking them out of Lebanon, never happened. Biden and Obama never, therefore, urged the moving in of NATO forces to fill in said vacuum.

Draw your own conclusions from Ifill’s failure to call him on it, to fact check it, and/or the MSM to report it.

It’s right there in the transcript; see for yourself.
My conclusions are pretty simple on the gaffe. His mouth got out in front of his brain for a second. What he was referring to was the UN brokered ceasefire in the 2006 Isreali/Hezbollah conflict:

Soon after the resolution's passage, both the UN and UNIFIL contributing nations such as France disclaimed responsibility for disarming Hezbollah.[4] Annan asserted that "dismantling Hezbollah is not the direct mandate of the UN," which could only help Lebanon disarm the organization.[5] Annan then said on August 25, 2006, "The understanding was that it would be the Lebanese who would disarm [Hezbollah]" and that "Obviously, if at some stage they need advice or some help from the international community and they were to approach us, we would consider it, but the troops are not going in there to disarm."[6]

In the days following the cease fire, several nations called for peace keepers to be placed in Lebanon to help disarm Hezbollah. While I don't have the record in front of me, it would not be at all unusual for Senators to chime in.

But the peacekeepers never happened and Hezbollah never completely disarmed. Now we're back to square one.

I give candidates a pass when they make extemporaneous goofs when their intended meaning is clear.

However, the quote used by Palin was hardly extemporaneous. It was a memorized closing. And the speechwriter seemingly pulled it out of Bartlett's Quotations and didn't check the context.


Why didn't Palin call him on it? Did she "just let it go" or did she not catch the gaffe? Ifill didn't follow-up any question with either candidate. General McClellan, anyone?
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