With the selection of Sarah 'Baracuda' Palin as his wingman the savvy old fighter pilot shows he is ready to fight the war against graft and corruption in government. Yes Baracuda was her nickname for her aggresive style of play as star point guard for her State Champion basketball team. I have seen several commenters from Alaska say the political landscape up there is littered with the bodies of people, metaphorically speaking, that got in her way to eliminating corruption in the Alaska machine. This is a woman that expects results and if you don't deliver she finds someone who will, she is a doer not a talker. The more I find out about her the more impressed I have become in her short time in politics she has accomplished more to clean up Alaska politics than Obama did in Illinois. He talks a good game, she actually fights to get the reform done as does McCain.
She has more practical experience dealing with foreign governments than Obama or Biden after her work with Canada on a natural gas pipeline and she got all the details hammered out and passed. Alaska is also only some fifty miles from our cold war adversary Russia and hosts our largest Aegis missile defense system. I have no doubt that Gov. Palin has the steel to carry that nuclear football should the need arise and she will be a quick study on other aspects of foreign policy. Behind that pretty face lies the fighting spirit of the American frontier woman, tough as nails with a heart of gold and unafraid to work hard, commercial fishing in Alaska is hard and dangerous, for the right reasons.
Yep the old Maverick has gotten inside Obama's OODA loop with this choice and managed to shoot off Obama's stabalizers in the process. OODA stands for observe, orient, decide, act and was developed by Maj. John Boyd, a topgun fighter pilot during the Korean war, as a way to get inside the thought envelope of the opponent in a dog fight and has been taught ever since to our war pilots. For more on this don't miss this great essay by Charlie Martin and do read the very informative comments that follow.
There are two military concepts here that explain the (absolutely spectacular) choice of Governor Sarah Palin. Both of them are important to the training of a fighter pilot, and while one of them wasn't formulated until after McCain's flying career was over, it was an observation based on what fighter pilots had to know.
One of them is the "envelope" -- which is to say the parameters within which a fighter airplane must operate. The envelope can be seen as a sort of egg-shape, based on how quickly a plane can turn and maneuver. If your plane as a "tighter envelope" than another plane, the pilot has the advantage in a dogfight: you can turn inside the other plane, which means you can get into the perfect firing position, behind the opponent.
More important is the "OODA loop" -- which is the envelope for the pilot's thought process. How quickly can the pilot observe the situation, orient within the situation, decide, and act. If the pilot's OODA loop time is shorter, the pilot can overcome the slower.
At this point, we're seeing that McCain is completely within the Obama campaign's OODA loop -- they are out-thinking them and out-acting them -- and very problably the McCain campaign has a tighter envelope than the Obama campaign, as well.
I have zero doubt that Gov. Palin is the perfect wingman for the Maverick and am sure she is already inside Biden's loop on many issues especially the energy issue. Sarah Palin along with Jeb Hensarling, John Campbell, Bobby Jindal, Jim Demint, Tom Colburn, Michelle Bachman and quite a few others are the new face of the GOP and a very refreshing one at that. I like that direction and the announcement of Sarah Palin excites me as much or more than Mitt's campaign did and long time readers know I worked hard for Mitt.
This is a campaign now of talkers with no record of reform and a background of corruption, Obama/Biden vs doers with a real record of reform fighting corruption, McCain/Palin.