To Blink or not to Blink

A lot has been made of Sarah Palin's answers during her interview with ABC's Charlie Gibson but no question stood out more for me than when Gibson asked her if she thought that she was qualified to be Vice President.  Her response was, "I never blinked." 

Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC commented that she actually would prefer someone in the office of President or Vice President who would in fact blink.  This is where the rubber meets the road for the liberal mind and the conservative mind.  Blinking is a sign of wisdom for liberals, for conservatives not blinking is a sign of resolve. 

I would submit one question to those of you out there who find wisdom in blinking or pausing in a time of great consequence.  Would you appreciate a blink from the surgeon during a life saving operation?  Would you prefer that as a soldier, the guy covering your back blinked?  If you were a cop staring down a thug would you want your partner to blink?  Would you like the fireman to blink rather than rush in? 

You see, in some things blinking will get you killed, it will get others killed.  Blinking is why 911 happened, it is why Hitler happened and it is why Pearl Harbor happened.  Taking your eye off of the ball is how your opponent wins.  So to answer the critics of Sarah Palin who doubt her resolve or her honesty when asked that question, to answer Andrea Mitchell and the other pseudo sage and wise journalistic philosophers, I don't want a leader who blinks, I want a leader who has the ability to keep their eyes focused on the ball 100% of the time. 


The soldier on the ground wants a leader who won't blink, they don't want another Mogadishu or a repeat of the failed policies of the opening stages of the Iraq war when our President blinked and didn't listen to the commanders on the ground.  Cops don't want partners that blink, the public doesn't want firefighters that blink, surgeons who blink and most certainly we don't want our leaders to blink in the face of petty dictators like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Kim Sung Il or Vladimir Putin. 

People like Andrea Mitchell and Charlie Gibson were looking for Sarah Palin to blink when asked about Georgia as it relates to Russia and whether or not as a theoretical member of NATO would we help.  Duh, that is what member states do, and if Georgia were a member of NATO it would be our obligation to not blink, to not equivocate.  There was also consternation over her answer in relation to Israel and their right to protect themselves against an eminent attack from Iran, again, asked and answered and then asked again, waiting for the blink that never happened.

I contrast this with the blinking of Barack Obama.  When asked about Iran, blink, when asked about combating evil, blink, when asked about when life actually begins, blink, blink and blink some more.  Make no mistake, Sarah Palin knows what it is like to put a moose in the crosshairs and not blink. She knows what it is like to take on members of her own party and not blink.  She knows what it is like to take on the challenges of family and not blink and I am pretty comfortable with the fact that when it comes to advancing the cause of liberty and freedom around the world as an ambassador of this country in the role of Vice President she will never blink.

A lot is going to be made of her maverick approach, about some of her shortcomings when it comes to knowing everything about everything.  The truth of this whole thing is that the only person who is qualified to be the president is someone who is the president and even then only about half the people believe that to be true.  This isn't about her ability to be president, the fact that she is one heartbeat away is just a canard thrown into the mix in an attempt to confuse you. 

The real issue is that when you look at the four people in this race, who do you feel most understands you, understands where you are coming from and what you are going through.  That is where you have to look, deep down in those places you never like to go.  The fact of the matter is that whomever wins this race will have the knowledge and the wisdom of others to draw from. So the issue becomes less about who is ready and more about who you believe won't blink in the face of our enemy and our challenges and who has the humility to listen to those they have assembled around them.

Of course that is just my take.

E.L. Burton blogs here.
A lot has been made of Sarah Palin's answers during her interview with ABC's Charlie Gibson but no question stood out more for me than when Gibson asked her if she thought that she was qualified to be Vice President.  Her response was, "I never blinked." 

Andrea Mitchell of MSNBC commented that she actually would prefer someone in the office of President or Vice President who would in fact blink.  This is where the rubber meets the road for the liberal mind and the conservative mind.  Blinking is a sign of wisdom for liberals, for conservatives not blinking is a sign of resolve. 

I would submit one question to those of you out there who find wisdom in blinking or pausing in a time of great consequence.  Would you appreciate a blink from the surgeon during a life saving operation?  Would you prefer that as a soldier, the guy covering your back blinked?  If you were a cop staring down a thug would you want your partner to blink?  Would you like the fireman to blink rather than rush in? 

You see, in some things blinking will get you killed, it will get others killed.  Blinking is why 911 happened, it is why Hitler happened and it is why Pearl Harbor happened.  Taking your eye off of the ball is how your opponent wins.  So to answer the critics of Sarah Palin who doubt her resolve or her honesty when asked that question, to answer Andrea Mitchell and the other pseudo sage and wise journalistic philosophers, I don't want a leader who blinks, I want a leader who has the ability to keep their eyes focused on the ball 100% of the time. 


The soldier on the ground wants a leader who won't blink, they don't want another Mogadishu or a repeat of the failed policies of the opening stages of the Iraq war when our President blinked and didn't listen to the commanders on the ground.  Cops don't want partners that blink, the public doesn't want firefighters that blink, surgeons who blink and most certainly we don't want our leaders to blink in the face of petty dictators like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Kim Sung Il or Vladimir Putin. 

People like Andrea Mitchell and Charlie Gibson were looking for Sarah Palin to blink when asked about Georgia as it relates to Russia and whether or not as a theoretical member of NATO would we help.  Duh, that is what member states do, and if Georgia were a member of NATO it would be our obligation to not blink, to not equivocate.  There was also consternation over her answer in relation to Israel and their right to protect themselves against an eminent attack from Iran, again, asked and answered and then asked again, waiting for the blink that never happened.

I contrast this with the blinking of Barack Obama.  When asked about Iran, blink, when asked about combating evil, blink, when asked about when life actually begins, blink, blink and blink some more.  Make no mistake, Sarah Palin knows what it is like to put a moose in the crosshairs and not blink. She knows what it is like to take on members of her own party and not blink.  She knows what it is like to take on the challenges of family and not blink and I am pretty comfortable with the fact that when it comes to advancing the cause of liberty and freedom around the world as an ambassador of this country in the role of Vice President she will never blink.

A lot is going to be made of her maverick approach, about some of her shortcomings when it comes to knowing everything about everything.  The truth of this whole thing is that the only person who is qualified to be the president is someone who is the president and even then only about half the people believe that to be true.  This isn't about her ability to be president, the fact that she is one heartbeat away is just a canard thrown into the mix in an attempt to confuse you. 

The real issue is that when you look at the four people in this race, who do you feel most understands you, understands where you are coming from and what you are going through.  That is where you have to look, deep down in those places you never like to go.  The fact of the matter is that whomever wins this race will have the knowledge and the wisdom of others to draw from. So the issue becomes less about who is ready and more about who you believe won't blink in the face of our enemy and our challenges and who has the humility to listen to those they have assembled around them.

Of course that is just my take.

E.L. Burton blogs here.