Saturday, November 04, 2006

Allen-Webb, Pt. IV (A New Hope). [Sorry, couldn't resist.] Actually, there really isn't much hopeful or fun about this race. I had started drafting a follow-up to my earlier survey of Webb's books by focusing on his notion of honor, but before I could complete it, he was throwing honor out the window -- embracing Clinton and Kerry -- resorting to vile smears, innuendos and outright lies (he started in with that thoroughly debunked body armor story). So I just couldn't finish and post it.

In short, Webb was, by his campaigning, negating what I thought was his best quality, honor.

This doesn't mean I'm going to now back Allen. He's got his own problems. He acts like a frat boy instead of a leader. Allen's mudslinging regarding the use of inappropriate dialogue (whatever) in Webb's novels are over the edge -- see this rebuttal by Victor Davis Hanson. Yes, as I said before, he was a good governor, but as a Senator, what has he done?

So, maybe it's time for me to check out the Green Party candidate. (I'm already planning on voting Green in the House election -- that's another story).

Also, see the voting guide (here in .pdf format) prepared by Catholics in Alliance ("CiA") a liberal-leaning Catholic organization. As noted by the conservative Weekly Standard, Webb may actually be the more right-wing of the two candidates -- something many of his supporters might not be aware of. Both he and Allen are pro-death penalty, pro-gun rights, anti-affirmative action, etc. So, many of the issues are negated.

The differences, on issues identified by CiA, come down to this (and I'm color coding according to what the CiA sees as crucial issues separating the two; red are negative moral issues, green are positive moral issues, as seen by the CiA):

Webb: for abortion on demand, fuzzy on public financing thereof; for experimentation on unborn children; for gay marriage; for immediate (or phased -- he's claimed both) withdrawal of troops from Iraq.

Allen: opposed to abortion on demand; opposed to public financing of abortions; opposed to experimentation on unborn children; opposed to gay marriage; in favor of finishing up in Iraq.

Of course, as I have always acknowledged and CiA also proposes, it's not just a calculation whereby we add up the positive issues and subtract the negative ones and whoever comes out ahead gets the vote. Take the pull out issue. As I'm reading in The Looming Tower (highly recommended), Osama bin Laden and the other terrorists are emboldened by perceived US weakness. A pull out in Iraq will definitely be seen as a victory by the terrorists and will further embolden them. Therefore, Allen may be right -- it would be better (for both Iraq and the US) to see things through.

Anyway, as I said, I'm going to need to explore the Green option, but in the meantime: James Webb, you lost my vote by your abdication of honor.

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