A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life

A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life
I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, –that unless I believed, I should not understand.-- St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109)

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Fairness and Truth in Politics #1: The Issues

Myth: Senator So-and-So has No Position on Such-and-Such

Anyone who thinks that either Senator Obama or Senator McCain do not have positions on the issues that concern all of us, simply needs to click on a couple of websites. I have had friends say to me, "Barack Obama is an empty suit," or "John McCain has no plan for health care." What cracks me up is that when my friends, whom I love, say such things, I think to myself, "Well, here is a person who has simply accepted her or his party's talking points without checking out the facts."

All one has to do is to visit the websites of both John McCain and Barack Obama to know that each candidate has detailed plans for health care, foreign policy, taxes, et al. It is important to read through the various positions and critique them and argue over them. But let us put to rest the myth that either campaign has no plan for this or that.

To continue to make such a claim, once one knows otherwise, is disingenuous.

By the way, if you are interesting in getting at the truth, here are the websites of both campaigns and their positions on the issues:

Barack Obama

John McCain

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Cross-Posted at RedBlueChristian


ChrisB said...

I hate to nitpick, but having positions detailed on his website is not necessarily proof that the candidate himself is not an empty suit.

E.g., Reagan and GW Bush have both been accused of being the mouthpiece for other people's ideas.

It is not a piece of paper (or website) that puts this to rest but a live performance where the candidate can demonstrate that he can and does think about these issues in a clear way.

Allan R. Bevere said...


Not to nitpick in return, but it is extremely difficult to get to the level of politics that Obama and McCain have achieved and be empty suits or fail to have positions on issues.

Of course, candidates employ and utilize other peoples' ideas; we all do. That's actually a good thing. As far as performance, nobody makes it to this level of politics without being able to articulate.

Your example of Reagan and GW Bush is the perfect example of what I am saying. Only their political opponents uttered such nonsense, as if they were so in the know. What it all boils down to is that the empty suit or no position charge is always leveled against the opponent. This is a cover way of saying, "Your politics does not agree with mine, so you are either stupid or you simply aren't smart enough to have view on the matter." One's politics becomes the standard of measuring intelligence.

ChrisB said...

Agreed, but don't you think a live performance is more informative than a position paper written by some staffer?

Allan R. Bevere said...


Of course, but what I am saying is that to suggest that the candidate in question has no position on an issue or that he or she is not too bright, are views that cannot be reasonably sustained at this level of political engagement.