DSC00014The kids and I attended the Sarah Palin rally held in Des Moines on Saturday at Hy-Vee Hall.  Before going into Hy-Vee Hall I had to explain why people were out front protesting.  I said I don’t know kids, because I certainly don’t have the time or interest to protest at Obama rallies.  But they can be thankful that in this country they have the right to protest.  First the girls got a picture with Governor Palin (above), sort of.  She looks kind of stiff.

DSC00016 Then we ran into Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and the kids were impressed with how nice he was.  I reminded him that we had met before when I gave him a tour of Polk County Youth Services.  He nodded like he remembered, but I doubt he did.  He took a picture with us so we can say we have at least one that wasn’t a cut-out.

(Third paragraph and picture removed – Katie in comment #16 & 17 made a good point.  It wasn’t my intent to “use” my son as a political tool, but looking at the picture I can see how it may be interpreted that way.  I’d rather have debate be about what Palin said or Obama policies, not about a picture of my son.)

The Hall ended up being packed.  Over 10,000 attended, and there was still a line over three blocks long when the doors were closed.  Aaron Tippin performed five songs, and then we heard from Senator Sam Brownback (R- KS), Kim Schmett who is challenging Congressman Leonard Boswell in Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District, we heard from a couple of men running for the Iowa Statehouse, and then Senator Chuck Grassley came out to speak.  One person who was noticeably absent was Christopher Reed who is challenging Senator Tom Harkin.  Then Governor Sarah Palin came out to speak to speak on behalf of  John McCain and her ticket which mainly covered the economy, taxes and energy.

Below is a “playlist” of different video I took during the rally.  It includes four of Aaron Tippin’s songs, Senator Sam Brownback, Kim Schmett, Senator Chuck Grassley and Governor Sarah Palin.

37 comments
  1. “I asked him if he knew what socialism was. “No clue,” he replied. At least he’s honest.”
    At least he’s honest? I don’t know when the word “honest” started replacing “ignorant.” C’mon, man. I won’t even begin to go into how disturbed I am by the involvement of children in ANY political campaign.
    Unbias education on the issues at stake? Most certainly. Dragging them to a rally for one of the biggest farces in American history? Not ok.

  2. “I asked him if he knew what socialism was. “No clue,” he replied. At least he’s honest.”
    At least he’s honest? I don’t know when the word “honest” started replacing “ignorant.” C’mon, man. I won’t even begin to go into how disturbed I am by the involvement of children in ANY political campaign.
    Unbias education on the issues at stake? Most certainly. Dragging them to a rally for one of the biggest farces in American history? Not ok.

  3. Ok, I’ll try not to be offended that you called my 10-year-old ignorant. He is extremely bright. I can’t say that I know many 10-year-old boys who could tell you what socialism is accurately. That was an extremely petty comment to make.

    Also what world do you live in? Do you really think that kids (as they get older) should be isolated from the political process? Here in Iowa you trip over it. I’d rather they get a chance to see it first hand than learn from all of the political ads that are being run. We home educate. This is part of social sciences – seeing how the political system works and doesn’t work. They had fun. They got to meet their senator. They learned. I didn’t let them wave their signs (for starters they were too short and would hit people in the face).

    Also, this rally is quite tame compared to some of the crap these kids are shoveled in public school now a days.

    So what is it that you are really upset about? That I took my children to a political event or that I took them to the wrong one in your mind? Please, your comment would have seemed non-partisan if it wasn’t for the last sentence.

  4. Ok, I’ll try not to be offended that you called my 10-year-old ignorant. He is extremely bright. I can’t say that I know many 10-year-old boys who could tell you what socialism is accurately. That was an extremely petty comment to make.

    Also what world do you live in? Do you really think that kids (as they get older) should be isolated from the political process? Here in Iowa you trip over it. I’d rather they get a chance to see it first hand than learn from all of the political ads that are being run. We home educate. This is part of social sciences – seeing how the political system works and doesn’t work. They had fun. They got to meet their senator. They learned. I didn’t let them wave their signs (for starters they were too short and would hit people in the face).

    Also, this rally is quite tame compared to some of the crap these kids are shoveled in public school now a days.

    So what is it that you are really upset about? That I took my children to a political event or that I took them to the wrong one in your mind? Please, your comment would have seemed non-partisan if it wasn’t for the last sentence.

  5. I’m with you Shane.. sharing this part of our lives with our children is important! I applaud you for bringing your kids and engaging them in the process.. if you don’t who will?

  6. I’m with you Shane.. sharing this part of our lives with our children is important! I applaud you for bringing your kids and engaging them in the process.. if you don’t who will?

  7. Not me, but I am learning about it this election.

    Shane, I think it appropriate that parents share their beliefs, all their beliefs, with their children. How else do you portray a consistent worldview to them? How else do you emulate how you believe they should live their lives as adults?

    By the same token, everyone is entitled to an opinion and we who blog open ourselves up to the opinions of others. Sometimes the blogosphere is not the best place to be. Consider it an opportunity to show a bit more of your Christian worldview to your children.

    Lastly, I met Senator Grassley years ago. In the picture above, he seems only slightly less stiff (not to mention flat) as Governor Palin.

  8. Not me, but I am learning about it this election.

    Shane, I think it appropriate that parents share their beliefs, all their beliefs, with their children. How else do you portray a consistent worldview to them? How else do you emulate how you believe they should live their lives as adults?

    By the same token, everyone is entitled to an opinion and we who blog open ourselves up to the opinions of others. Sometimes the blogosphere is not the best place to be. Consider it an opportunity to show a bit more of your Christian worldview to your children.

    Lastly, I met Senator Grassley years ago. In the picture above, he seems only slightly less stiff (not to mention flat) as Governor Palin.

  9. @Kansas Bob – thanks!
    @Andy – You articulated what parents should do very well. The thing that offended me wasn’t that Katie was not in agreement with me taking the kids. Rather it was saying that my son was ignorant because he didn’t know what socialism was. I guess in her defense I didn’t say how old he was or in what grade. If he were in high school (which is obvious from the picture – he’s not) then I would likely agree with her. Anyway, she can say whatever she will about me, but leave my kids out of it.

    That said, point taken, and I usually have a pretty think skin.

  10. @Kansas Bob – thanks!
    @Andy – You articulated what parents should do very well. The thing that offended me wasn’t that Katie was not in agreement with me taking the kids. Rather it was saying that my son was ignorant because he didn’t know what socialism was. I guess in her defense I didn’t say how old he was or in what grade. If he were in high school (which is obvious from the picture – he’s not) then I would likely agree with her. Anyway, she can say whatever she will about me, but leave my kids out of it.

    That said, point taken, and I usually have a pretty think skin.

  11. Most McCain supporters are ignorant of the word socialism, or simply lying. Welcome to politics, and religious radicalism!

  12. Most McCain supporters are ignorant of the word socialism, or simply lying. Welcome to politics, and religious radicalism!

  13. Oh, and isn’t it queer McCain supporters refer to the tax cuts for poor saps proposed by Obama as socialism, while they ignore McCain’s plan to buy houses and give them to people?

  14. Oh, and isn’t it queer McCain supporters refer to the tax cuts for poor saps proposed by Obama as socialism, while they ignore McCain’s plan to buy houses and give them to people?

  15. I think I would have said that there are also protesters at Obama events, and that in this country that is one way that people speak up about what they believe. Then I might add that there are better, more effective ways. You instinct to make yourself better than the protesters (you don’t have the time, etc) is something you might want to examine, because you just communicated to your son that it’s okay to look down on others who do things differently (not, in this case, “wrongly”).

    I respectfully disagree about the value of bringing him to see Sarah Palin in the first place. In hindsight, say ten years from now, it will be like, “Dad, remember when you were all fired up about Dan Quayle? What were you thinking!?”

    Heh, heh.

  16. I think I would have said that there are also protesters at Obama events, and that in this country that is one way that people speak up about what they believe. Then I might add that there are better, more effective ways. You instinct to make yourself better than the protesters (you don’t have the time, etc) is something you might want to examine, because you just communicated to your son that it’s okay to look down on others who do things differently (not, in this case, “wrongly”).

    I respectfully disagree about the value of bringing him to see Sarah Palin in the first place. In hindsight, say ten years from now, it will be like, “Dad, remember when you were all fired up about Dan Quayle? What were you thinking!?”

    Heh, heh.

  17. @AndyG – I didn’t outline my entire conversation, and I certainly did not mean to imply that there were not protesters at Obama events. The kids know the context of my comments – I work 2 jobs. I don’t have time. I don’t see what they are doing as productive either – people who protest either side. I probably could have explained more, but we were focused on getting inside. I will say that they were very respectful so I personally had no problem with them being there.

    Regarding taking them to see Palin. My kids have gotten to see President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Governor Mike Huckabee and Senator Sam Brownback (they actually got to meet him) back when he was running for president. I think overall it has been a positive experience.

    @Erich – A 10-year-old boy no, but I do. Wealth redistribution is a socialist principle, as is nationalized healthcare (which Obama doesn’t go quite that far).

    Both Obama and McCain voted yes on the Bailout plan, and I think both of them are wrong on that. Just because I support a candidate doesn’t mean I agree with that candidate 100%. With Obama I agree very little with either his idea or how he would go about achieving his idea.

    So Erich – religious radicalism is people of faith getting involved with the political process? I guess I guess I “cling to my religion” too much (don’t have guns).

  18. @AndyG – I didn’t outline my entire conversation, and I certainly did not mean to imply that there were not protesters at Obama events. The kids know the context of my comments – I work 2 jobs. I don’t have time. I don’t see what they are doing as productive either – people who protest either side. I probably could have explained more, but we were focused on getting inside. I will say that they were very respectful so I personally had no problem with them being there.

    Regarding taking them to see Palin. My kids have gotten to see President Bush, Vice President Cheney, Governor Mike Huckabee and Senator Sam Brownback (they actually got to meet him) back when he was running for president. I think overall it has been a positive experience.

    @Erich – A 10-year-old boy no, but I do. Wealth redistribution is a socialist principle, as is nationalized healthcare (which Obama doesn’t go quite that far).

    Both Obama and McCain voted yes on the Bailout plan, and I think both of them are wrong on that. Just because I support a candidate doesn’t mean I agree with that candidate 100%. With Obama I agree very little with either his idea or how he would go about achieving his idea.

    So Erich – religious radicalism is people of faith getting involved with the political process? I guess I guess I “cling to my religion” too much (don’t have guns).

  19. A 10-year-old who doesn’t know what socialism is? What is the world coming to? Ha, ha. Just kidding.

    Katie, keep drinking the Obama koolaid. The artificial flavoring is good for you. Don’t let anybody tell you any different.

  20. A 10-year-old who doesn’t know what socialism is? What is the world coming to? Ha, ha. Just kidding.

    Katie, keep drinking the Obama koolaid. The artificial flavoring is good for you. Don’t let anybody tell you any different.

  21. I just re-read my first comment and I do apologize for how I framed it. Honestly.

    First: I do have a real problem when people mis-use the word honesty, or rather when “just being honest” excuses one from basing their argument in the facts.
    I did NOT mean mean your kid was stupid. At all. I did however mean that calling Obama’s economic plan a socialist one is SIMPLY not true… an ignorant statement. And if for the sake of argument we did call it socialism, then every single president in US history has been a socialist. Eisenhower being at the top of the list. And Palin’s oil rev checks? How is that not “redistribution of wealth”?

    Secondly: I truly am disturbed when children become a part of any political movement. Now, I realize that this is probably a matter of theological/philosophical difference. I would be happy to get into that discussion if I thought I could do it in a ‘comment’ form.
    In conclusion (finally, I know): I honestly meant no harm. Your post yesterday pissed me off and I suppose that spilled over to today.
    I’m thrilled that you’re educating your children in politics. I’m sure they’re not stupid.
    I stand by my first arguments, but agree that I should have spent more time explaining myself, and should have done so in a more sensitive manner. Thanks for calling me out on it.

  22. I just re-read my first comment and I do apologize for how I framed it. Honestly.

    First: I do have a real problem when people mis-use the word honesty, or rather when “just being honest” excuses one from basing their argument in the facts.
    I did NOT mean mean your kid was stupid. At all. I did however mean that calling Obama’s economic plan a socialist one is SIMPLY not true… an ignorant statement. And if for the sake of argument we did call it socialism, then every single president in US history has been a socialist. Eisenhower being at the top of the list. And Palin’s oil rev checks? How is that not “redistribution of wealth”?

    Secondly: I truly am disturbed when children become a part of any political movement. Now, I realize that this is probably a matter of theological/philosophical difference. I would be happy to get into that discussion if I thought I could do it in a ‘comment’ form.
    In conclusion (finally, I know): I honestly meant no harm. Your post yesterday pissed me off and I suppose that spilled over to today.
    I’m thrilled that you’re educating your children in politics. I’m sure they’re not stupid.
    I stand by my first arguments, but agree that I should have spent more time explaining myself, and should have done so in a more sensitive manner. Thanks for calling me out on it.

  23. @Katie – thanks for coming back and commenting again.

    I accept your apology. I’m glad to know that wasn’t what you meant.

    Regarding what I meant by “honest” is that he was honest in saying he didn’t know, he didn’t try to make something up. I should have phrased that differently That doesn’t mean I don’t know.

    Regarding Obama’s economic plan – I wouldn’t call it flat out a socialist one, but it does borrow from socialist principles. So no it wouldn’t usher in a full blown socialist agenda. It is bringing in some of that philosophy and economically it is a non-starter.

    I guess I’m not as familiar with Eisenhower as you, so how is he at the top of the list? Regarding the oil revenue – I don’t know all the details other than every household got a check. It wasn’t from a tax raise – it was revenue they were already having come in.

    I can understand some of your sensitivity with children being involved in politics. They can be used. They can be exposed to things that aren’t healthy. Reflecting back I should have told my son to go put that sign back as I wasn’t thrilled with what he got.

    But I think if done correctly it can be a positive thing.

  24. @Katie – thanks for coming back and commenting again.

    I accept your apology. I’m glad to know that wasn’t what you meant.

    Regarding what I meant by “honest” is that he was honest in saying he didn’t know, he didn’t try to make something up. I should have phrased that differently That doesn’t mean I don’t know.

    Regarding Obama’s economic plan – I wouldn’t call it flat out a socialist one, but it does borrow from socialist principles. So no it wouldn’t usher in a full blown socialist agenda. It is bringing in some of that philosophy and economically it is a non-starter.

    I guess I’m not as familiar with Eisenhower as you, so how is he at the top of the list? Regarding the oil revenue – I don’t know all the details other than every household got a check. It wasn’t from a tax raise – it was revenue they were already having come in.

    I can understand some of your sensitivity with children being involved in politics. They can be used. They can be exposed to things that aren’t healthy. Reflecting back I should have told my son to go put that sign back as I wasn’t thrilled with what he got.

    But I think if done correctly it can be a positive thing.

  25. Ok. As I understand it, Obama’s “socialist” criticism are coming from those who are outraged by his proposal to up the marginal tax rate on the richest Americans from 35% to 39.6%. But in 1953 Eisenhower the marginal tax rate was 92% percent, and after two terms he’s only lowered it to 91%. I could give you long list of other similar Republican (and Democratic) presidencies.
    If you want to argue the pros and cons on both McCain’s and Obama’s policies, then you need to do so with an understanding of historical context, as well as a working knowledge of the definitions of the words that you (and most members of both sides of the aisles) have been throwing around.
    And Palin’s oil revenue checks? Wealth redistribution as clearly as it can be defined.
    And I’m not sure how “wealth redistribution” became such an evil word. When a nation is in crisis, as we very clearly are, it CANNOT survive without some sort of wealth redistribution. See WWII, Korean War, or the Cold War. Now, I really really do understand that this is a scary thought for some, but in Obama’s case, the fear is horribly overblown.
    I hope that you don’t honestly believe that wealth redistribution is inherently evil because then that would mean you want my friends and family in New Orleans to give back their FEMA checks. And you must also agree that since I do not have children, that I should be exempted from having to pay taxes that go toward public schooling. Or that anyone should pay taxes ever.
    I really just want people to think about the arguments they’re making. We can’t, as well meaning citizen, afford not to.
    One more note: I’ve been thinking about why I was so bothered by hearing that you took your children to the Palin rally. I am positive that it had everything to do with the picture of your son hold the sign. You, being his father, may not be able tot see what I mean, but there is something haunting about the picture. I couldn’t figure out why you would post it on your public blog if you didn’t wholeheartedly endorse using children as political props. Hopefully you can understand how an outsider might possibly misinterpret that picture as such. For the record, I do not believe (now) that it was your intention to use your son in any way as a political tool. Be take another look at the picture.

  26. Ok. As I understand it, Obama’s “socialist” criticism are coming from those who are outraged by his proposal to up the marginal tax rate on the richest Americans from 35% to 39.6%. But in 1953 Eisenhower the marginal tax rate was 92% percent, and after two terms he’s only lowered it to 91%. I could give you long list of other similar Republican (and Democratic) presidencies.
    If you want to argue the pros and cons on both McCain’s and Obama’s policies, then you need to do so with an understanding of historical context, as well as a working knowledge of the definitions of the words that you (and most members of both sides of the aisles) have been throwing around.
    And Palin’s oil revenue checks? Wealth redistribution as clearly as it can be defined.
    And I’m not sure how “wealth redistribution” became such an evil word. When a nation is in crisis, as we very clearly are, it CANNOT survive without some sort of wealth redistribution. See WWII, Korean War, or the Cold War. Now, I really really do understand that this is a scary thought for some, but in Obama’s case, the fear is horribly overblown.
    I hope that you don’t honestly believe that wealth redistribution is inherently evil because then that would mean you want my friends and family in New Orleans to give back their FEMA checks. And you must also agree that since I do not have children, that I should be exempted from having to pay taxes that go toward public schooling. Or that anyone should pay taxes ever.
    I really just want people to think about the arguments they’re making. We can’t, as well meaning citizen, afford not to.
    One more note: I’ve been thinking about why I was so bothered by hearing that you took your children to the Palin rally. I am positive that it had everything to do with the picture of your son hold the sign. You, being his father, may not be able tot see what I mean, but there is something haunting about the picture. I couldn’t figure out why you would post it on your public blog if you didn’t wholeheartedly endorse using children as political props. Hopefully you can understand how an outsider might possibly misinterpret that picture as such. For the record, I do not believe (now) that it was your intention to use your son in any way as a political tool. Be take another look at the picture.

  27. @Katie

    You said: “I hope that you don’t honestly believe that wealth redistribution is inherently evil because then that would mean you want my friends and family in New Orleans to give back their FEMA checks. And you must also agree that since I do not have children, that I should be exempted from having to pay taxes that go toward public schooling. Or that anyone should pay taxes ever.”

    Not saying that at all, and that isn’t wealth redistribution. That is providing federal aid to those in a tough spot due to a disaster, and we all pay taxes for schools whether we have kids or not. His plan is to raise taxes on the “rich” (right now that is designated as $250,000) and then “spread the wealth” (his words, not mine). So is wealth redistribution evil? Well one could say it is government sanctioned stealing. I’m also concerned about small businesses that fall in this category that could be effected as well.

    You make a good point about the picture. I thought about it too. That wasn’t my intent, and I certainly don’t want to have a debate centered around a picture of my son. So I took it and the third paragraph down (and made sure to note in the post above that I did that).

  28. @Katie

    You said: “I hope that you don’t honestly believe that wealth redistribution is inherently evil because then that would mean you want my friends and family in New Orleans to give back their FEMA checks. And you must also agree that since I do not have children, that I should be exempted from having to pay taxes that go toward public schooling. Or that anyone should pay taxes ever.”

    Not saying that at all, and that isn’t wealth redistribution. That is providing federal aid to those in a tough spot due to a disaster, and we all pay taxes for schools whether we have kids or not. His plan is to raise taxes on the “rich” (right now that is designated as $250,000) and then “spread the wealth” (his words, not mine). So is wealth redistribution evil? Well one could say it is government sanctioned stealing. I’m also concerned about small businesses that fall in this category that could be effected as well.

    You make a good point about the picture. I thought about it too. That wasn’t my intent, and I certainly don’t want to have a debate centered around a picture of my son. So I took it and the third paragraph down (and made sure to note in the post above that I did that).

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