In his Breitbart.com article released early this morning, conservative writer Tony Lee highlights the tactics of the McCain campaign consultants who were caught in the act of trying to rewrite what happened in the 2008 election cycle. Enter the Schmidt memo:
POLITICO reported on a memo, “Shield Steve Schmidt From McCain Blame,” put together in the waning days of the 2008 presidential campaign by associates of Schmidt to absolve him of campaign mismanagement. The memo lays out a strategy to shape conventional wisdom by targeting mainstream journalists and Republican talking heads and to blitz the media landscape with friendly talking points that would make it seem like even Ronald Reagan could not have won in 2008.
The obvious purpose was to absolve the professional operatives of all blame, allowing them to get hired again and sell their “snake oil” magic to the next politician. The quid pro quo was simple: we give you exclusive “gossip” and minutiae and you get exclusive reporting and access.
Of course Palin was vetted, and she was vetted by none other than thorough Washington, D.C. power-lawyer A.B. Culvahouse. In an interview Culvahouse gave to The Washingtonian magazine, he described his impressions of Palin when he was vetting her: ”She gave a very thoughtful answer to all those questions. People who are more experienced, more savvy–maybe some of them gave less savvy answers…”.
But nobody mentions this inconvenient fact, and that is why it is important to look more closely at the “Schmidt Memo,” as it is important for two reasons.
First, it reveals how conventional wisdom is often invented for personal gain in the political world, and the same tactics are usually employed to try to destroy conservatives. Second, the tactics described in the memo are the exact same ones used by the Democrat-Media complex to tear down conservatives. Palin and her supporters have had to relentlessly and ruthlessly combat this false narrative, which has become conventional wisdom among the political and chattering class. If Team Schmidt employed these tactics to try to preserve Schmidt’s reputation, one can only expect they employed similar tactics to smear Palin.
Tony brilliantly takes us step-by-step through the events of 2008 leading up to the election with a mountain of evidence and documented connections that make the case of incompetence against the so-called expert political consultants effortlessly.
As we press forward inexorably toward the national election this fall, it’s important for us as conservatives to have a solid grasp on what has happened in the past and why it happened. Why? Because those with a self-serving agenda will skew our recollection of events to their favor and to our detriment; and we need to be on guard and ready to call out those who do so because they and their enablers will most certainly employ these same tactics in the future. They’ve gotten away with it before and they assumed they’d get away with it this time too:
Too often, those who have conventional wisdom manufactured about them cannot fight back. And that is why McCain’s paid professionals and the mainstream media thought they could target Palin and absolve Schmidt of any blame. Palin would go back to the hinterland and would not be heard from again, they thought. And conservatives, the conventional thinking went, would lose even more power and influence after the 2008 elections, even in a country in which a plurality has repeatedly identified themselves as conservative. But the mainstream media and those Republicans who have never understood conservatives underestimated Palin’s appeal, the power of the forthcoming Tea Party movement, and the fierceness with which her supporters would defend her when they figured out this charade.
Thankfully, we have astute, bold and dedicated watchdogs standing guard to help keep the record straight.