In 1962, having lost to Jerry Brown in an attempt to win the California governorship on the heels of having lost the presidential election to Jack Kennedy, Dick Nixon held a press conference in which he snarled to his media torturers that he was finished with politics, growling, "You won't have Nixon to kick around anymore."
Needless to say, Nixon, a victim of what Whitaker Chambers called "the conspiracy of the gentlemen" who had rallied around their hero, the traitor and fellow gentleman Alger Hiss and who hated Nixon for his role in exposing the Soviet spy, was written off as finished in American politics. His press conference itself became one more example of his unfitness for the presidency.
Nixon was not finished despite the common wisdom. He simply lowered his shoulders and largely unseen by the hostile media, plowed ahead. For the next six years he crisscrossed the nation, tirelessly campaigning for Republican candidates for Congress and state offices and amassing a vault full of IOUs in the process.
Six years later, in 1968 he called the IOUs in and walked away with the Republican presidential nomination, and then the presidency itself.
I don't have the vaguest idea of what led Sarah Palin to hold her sudden press conference and announce she was stepping down as Alaska's governor, but I have a sneaking suspicion that she knew exactly what she was doing.
Like Nixon, Sarah Palin has been a target of a relentless and vicious attack by the conspiracy of the gentlemen, now known simply as the "elite" — all those who went to the right schools and live in the right places in Washington and New York and speak and socialize only with each other.
Like Nixon she has been personally and financially damaged by their attacks. Astonishingly, however, the incredible barrage of slanderous aspersions hurled at her and her family has failed to put a dent in her popularity. The gentlemen may despise her but the great mass of the American people recognize her as one of their own and they love her for it.
Like Nixon, her press conference itself was as loudly denounced as foolish and unintelligible with many of the "gentlemen" pronouncing it as her swan song, and with some even speculating there were some dark and hidden meanings behind it, the least offensive being that the lady is entente, a gentleman's way of saying she's pregnant.
She offered this explanation: "How sad that Washington and the media will never understand; it's about country. And though it's honorable for countless others to leave their positions for a higher calling and without finishing a term, of course we know by now, for some reason a different standard applies for the decisions I make.
"I am now looking ahead and how we can advance this country together with our values of less government intervention, greater energy independence, stronger national security, and much-needed fiscal restraint."
Look at it from Mrs. Palin's perspective. Aside from the matter of the timing of her press conference, the reason for which is known to herself and family alone, may have been the result of the urgency she feels exist at this moment in our history.
While everybody else seems focused on 2012 and the presidential election I'm convinced her eyes are set on 2010 and the crucial congressional elections, and given that focus, time's a wastin' and there isn't a moment to spare.
I think she is fully cognizant of the fact that her beloved America is in dire straits and Barack Obama's relentless drive to change this nation into a European style socialist state with the massive loss of freedom that entails must be halted now.
Driving the socialist Democrats out of control of Capitol Hill is the last and best hope available.
By freeing herself to plunge into the battle, Sarah Palin has cleared the way. If I'm right, for the next 17 months, like Nixon, she'll crisscross America not only campaigning for conservative GOP congressional candidates but sounding the alarm that individual freedom and prosperity are threatened and the threat must be addressed now.
The message is clear and must be shouted from the roof tops — America cannot survive unless the legislative power is stripped from the hands of the slavishly compliant Democratic majority which follows obediently the demands of a man determined to change the character of this nation into that of an authoritarian Marxist state where all but the elite will be equally miserable.
When America was last threatened by the incredible ineptness and bungling that was the Carter administration, divine providence gave us a new George Washington to save the nation — Ronald Reagan.
This time in Sarah Palin we may just be getting a new Joan of Arc.
Ora pro nobis
Phil Brennan writes for Newsmax.com. He is editor and publisher of Wednesday on the Web (www.pvbr.com) and was Washington columnist (Cato) for National Review magazine in the 1960s. He is a trustee of the Lincoln Heritage Institute and a member of the Association For Intelligence Officers. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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