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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Transcript Of Governor Palin's Speech In Hong Kong

So far, I’ve given you the view from Main Street, USA. But now I’d like to share with you how a Common Sense Conservative sees the world at large.

Later this year, we will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall – an event that changed not just Europe but the entire world. In a matter of months, millions of people in formerly captive nations were freed to pursue their individual and national ambitions. The competition that defined the post World War II era was suddenly over. What was once called “the free world” had so much to celebrate – the peaceful end to a great power rivalry and the liberation of so many from tyranny’s grip.

Some, you could say, took the celebration too far. Many spoke of a “peace dividend,” of the need to focus on domestic issues and spend less time, attention and money on endeavors overseas. Many saw a peaceful future, where globalization would break down borders and lead to greater global prosperity. Some argued that state sovereignty would fade – like that was a good thing? – that new non-governmental actors and old international institutions would become dominant in the new world order.

As we all know, that did not happen. Unfortunately, there was no shortage of warning signs that the end of the Cold War did not mean the end of history or the end of conflict. In Europe, the breakup of Yugoslavia resulted in brutal wars in the Balkans. In the Middle East, a war was waged to reverse Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait. North Korea’s nuclear program nearly led to military conflict. In Africa, U.S. embassies were bombed by a group called al Qaeda.

Two weeks ago, America commemorated the 8th anniversary of the savagery of September 11, 2001. The vicious terrorist attacks of that day made clear that what happened in lands far distant from American shores directly affect our security. We came to learn, if we did not know before, that there were violent fanatics who sought not just to kill innocents, but to end our way of life. Their attacks have not been limited to the United States.

They attacked targets in Europe, North Africa and throughout the Middle East. Here in Asia, they killed more than 200 in a single attack in Bali. They bombed the Marriott Hotel and the Australian Embassy in Jakarta. Last year in Mumbai, more than 170 were killed in coordinated attacks in the heart of India’s financial capital. In this struggle with radical Islamic extremists, no part of the world is safe from those who bomb, maim and kill in the service of their twisted vision.

This war – and that is what it is, a war – is not, as some have said, a clash of civilizations. We are not at war with Islam. This is a war within Islam, where a small minority of violent killers seeks to impose their view on the vast majority of Muslims who want the same things all of us want: economic opportunity, education, and the chance to build a better life for themselves and their families. The reality is that al Qaeda and its affiliates have killed scores of innocent Muslim men, women and children.

The reality is that Muslims from Algeria, Indonesia, Iraq, Afghanistan and many other countries are fighting al Qaeda and their allies today. But this will be a long war, and it will require far more than just military power to prevail. Just as we did in the Cold War, we will need to use all the tools at our disposal – hard and soft power. Economic development, public diplomacy, educational exchanges, and foreign assistance will be just as important as the instruments of military power.

During the election campaign in the U.S. last year, you might have noticed we had some differences over Iraq. John McCain and I believed in the strength of the surge strategy – because of its success, Iraq is no longer the central front in the war on terrorism. Afghanistan is. Afghanistan is where the 9/11 attacks were planned and if we are not successful in Afghanistan, al Qaeda will once again find safe haven there. As a candidate and in office, President Obama called Afghanistan the “necessary war” and pledged to provide the resources needed to prevail. However, prominent voices in the Democratic Party are opposing the additional U.S. ground forces that are clearly needed. Speaker of the House Pelosi, Defense Subcommittee Chairman Murtha, the Senate Armed Services Committee Chair, and many others, recently expressed doubts about sending additional forces! President Obama will face a decision soon when the U.S. Commander in Afghanistan requests additional forces to implement his new counterinsurgency strategy.

We can win in Afghanistan by helping the Afghans build a stable representative state able to defend itself. And we must do what it takes to prevail. The stakes are very high. Last year, in the midst of the U.S. debate over what do to in Iraq, an important voice was heard – from Asia’s Wise Man, former Singaporean Prime Minister, Lee Kuan Yew, who wrote in the Washington Post about the cost of retreat in Iraq. In that article, he prophetically addressed the stakes in Afghanistan. He wrote: “The Taliban is again gathering strength, and a Taliban victory in Afghanistan or Pakistan would reverberate throughout the Muslim world. It would influence the grand debate among Muslims on the future of Islam. A severely retrograde form of Islam would be seen to have defeated modernity twice: first the Soviet Union, then the United States. There would be profound consequences, especially in the campaign against terrorism.” That statesman’s words remain every bit as true today. And Minister Lee knows, and I agree, that our success in Afghanistan will have consequences all over the world, including Asia. Our allies and our adversaries are watching to see if we have the staying power to protect our interests in Afghanistan. That is why I recently joined a group of Americans in urging President Obama to devote the resources necessary in Afghanistan and pledged to support him if he made the right decision.

That is why, even during this time of financial distress we need to maintain a strong defense. All government spending should undergo serious scrutiny. No programs or agencies should be automatically immune from cuts. We need to go back to fiscal discipline and unfortunately that has not been the view of the current Administration. They’re spending everywhere and with disregard for deficits and debts and our future economic competitiveness. Though we are engaged in two wars and face a diverse array of threats, it is the defense budget that has seen significant program cuts and has actually been reduced from current levels!

First, the Defense Department received only ½ of 1 % of the nearly trillion dollar Stimulus Package funding – even though many military projects fit the definition of “shovel-ready.” In this Administration’s first defense budget request for 2010, important programs were reduced or cancelled. As the threat of ballistic missiles from countries like North Korea and Iran grow, missile defense was slashed.

Despite the need to move men and material by air into theaters like Afghanistan, the Obama Administration sought to end production of our C-17s, the work horse of our ability to project long range power. Despite the Air Force saying it would increase future risk, the Obama Administration successfully sought to end F-22 production – at a time when both Russia and China are acquiring large numbers of next generation fighter aircraft. It strikes me as odd that Defense Secretary Gates is the only member of the Cabinet to be tasked with tightening his belt.

Now in the region I want to emphasize today: The reason I speak about defense is because our strong defense posture in Asia has helped keep the region safe and allowed it to prosper. Our Asian allies get nervous if they think we are weakening our security commitments. I worry about defense cuts not because I expect war but because I so badly want peace. And the region has enjoyed peace for so long because of our security commitment to our longstanding allies and partners.

Asia has been one of the world’s great success stories. It is a region where America needs to assist with right mix of hard and soft power. While I have so much hope for a bright future in Asia, in a region this dynamic, we must always be prepared for other contingencies. We must work at this – work with our allies to ensure the region’s continued peace and prosperity.

I know that you all -- like all of Asia and indeed the whole world – has a keen interest in the emergence of “China as a great power.” Over the past few decades China’s economic growth has been remarkable. So has the economic growth and political liberalization of all of our key allies in Asia, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan. Asia’s economic growth and political development, together with our forward military presence in the region and strong alliances, have allowed the region to prosper in peace for a long time. We hope that Asia will continue to be an engine of world economic growth, will continue to democratize and will remain at peace.

Our future is now deeply linked to Asia’s success. Our children’s future. We must continue to strengthen our key alliance with Japan, a country going through its own democratic change. Together the U.S. and Japan built the security umbrella under which so many Asians prospered. While there is so much attention to China these days, we cannot forget the importance of Japan in helping to make this the “Pacific Century.”

The recent elections in Japan demonstrated that voters wanted reform and an end to debt and stagnation. We have a substantial stake in Japan’s success -- our alliance with must continue to be the linchpin of regional security. With its open political system and vibrant democracy, South Korea wants to play a larger role on the international stage as well. Of course it wants us to work together toward a future where the peninsula is irreversibly denuclearized, and unified. But it also wants to play a global role. We need to work together with Japan, South Korea and our steadfast ally to the south, Australia, to make sure Asia remains peaceful and prosperous.

Australia rightly reminds us to keep our eye on Southeast Asia, where Indonesia has proved that Islam and democracy can co-exist. Indonesia has fought extremism inside its own border and is consolidating a multi-ethnic democracy that is home to hundreds of millions of Muslims. Those who say Islam and democracy are incompatible insult our friends in Indonesia.

Our great democratic friend India is also “looking East”, seeking a greater role in East Asia as well. Together with our allies we must help integrate India into Asia. If we do so we will have yet another strong democracy driving Asia’s economy and working on shared problems such as proliferation and extremism. And we must continue working with the region’s most dynamic economy, China. We all hope that China’s stated policy of a “Peaceful Rise” will be its future course. You know better than most the enormous change that has taken place in China over the last thirty years. Hundreds of millions of Chinese have been pulled out of poverty as China has undertaken economic reforms that have resulted in unprecedented growth. Even today, China’s economy is projected to grow by some 8%. It is helping to edge the world out of recession.

China has amassed huge financial reserves. Chinese diplomats are engaged on every continent and, through its vote on the United Nations Security Council, China has become critical in gaining UN support on multilateral issues from Darfur to Iran to North Korea. Just four years ago, then-Deputy Secretary of State Bob Zoellick urged China to become a “responsible stakeholder” in the international system. He observed the many benefits to China of a “benign international environment.”

The peaceful regional environment that China has enjoyed was created through the hard work of Americans, Japanese, South Koreans and Australians. Secretary Zoellick urged China to step up and play its role too. We are working with China to de-nuclearize North Korea. But to be a responsible member of the international community China should exert greater pressure on North Korea to denuclearize and undergo the fundamental reforms it needs. Zoellick urged China to play a greater role in stabilizing the international energy market by ceasing its support of dangerous regimes.

China could play a role in stabilizing its ally Pakistan, and working for peace in Afghanistan. There are many areas where the U.S. and China can work together. And, we would welcome a China that wanted to assume a more responsible and active role in international politics. But Secretary Zoellick also noted that many of China’s actions create risk and uncertainty. These uncertainties led nations to “hedge” their relations with China because, in Zoellick’s words: “Many countries HOPE China will pursue a ‘Peaceful Rise’ but NONE will bet their future on it.”

See: this is the heart of the issue with China: we engage with the hope Beijing becomes a responsible stakeholder, but we must takes steps in the event it does not. See? We all hope to see a China that is stable, peaceful, prosperous and free. But we must also work with our allies in the region and the world in the event China goes in a direction that causes regional instability.

Asia is at its best when it is not dominated by a single power. In seeking Asia’s continued peace and prosperity, we should seek, as we did in Europe, an Asia “whole and free” – free from domination by any one power, prospering in open and free markets, and settling political differences at ballot boxes and negotiating tables.We can, must and should work with a “rising China” to address issues of mutual concern. But we also need to work with our allies in addressing the uncertainties created by China’s rise. We simply CANNOT turn a blind eye to Chinese policies and actions that can undermine international peace and security.

China has some 1000 missiles aimed at Taiwan and no serious observer believes Taiwan poses a military threat to Beijing. Those same Chinese forces make our friends in Japan and Australia nervous. China provides support for some of the world’s most questionable regimes from Sudan to Burma to Zimbabwe. China’s military buildup raises concerns from Delhi to Tokyo because it has taken place in the absence of any discernible external threat.

China, along with Russia, has repeatedly undermined efforts to impose tougher sanctions on Iran for its defiance of the international community in pursuing its nuclear program. The Chinese food and product safety record has raised alarms from East Asia and Europe to the United States. And, domestic incidents of unrest -- from the protests of Uighurs and Tibetans, to Chinese workers throughout the country rightfully make us nervous. It is very much in our interest and the interest of regional stability that China work out its own contradictions – between a dynamic and entrepreneurial private sector on the one hand and a one party state unwilling or unable to adjust to its own society’s growing needs and desires and demands, including a human being’s innate desire for freedom.

I do not cite these issues out of any hostility toward China. Quite the contrary, I and all Americans of good faith hope for the Chinese people’s success. We welcome the rise that can be so good for all mankind. We simply urge China to rise responsibly. I simply believe we cannot ignore areas of disagreement as we seek to move forward on areas of agreement. Believe me, China does not hesitate to tell us when it thinks we are in the wrong. I mentioned China’s internal contradictions. They should concern us all. We hear many Chinese voices throughout that great country calling out for more freedom, and for greater justice. Twenty years ago, many believed that as China liberalized its economy, greater political freedom would naturally follow. Unfortunately that has not come to pass.

Ummm, in fact, it seems China has taken great pains to learn what it sees as “the lesson” of the fall on the Berlin Wall and the demise of the Soviet Union: any easing of political constraints can inevitably spin out of control. But, in many ways, it is the essence of China’s political system that leads to concerns about its rise. Think about it. How many books and articles have been written about the dangers of India’s rise? Almost as large as China – and soon to be more populous – virtually no one worries about the security implications of India becoming a great power – just as a century ago the then-preeminent power, Great Britain, worried little about the rise of America to great power status. My point is that the more politically open and just China is, the more Chinese citizens of every ethnicity will settle disputes in courts rather than on the streets. The more open it is, the less we will be concerned about its military build-up and intentions. The more transparent China is, the more likely it is they we will find a true and lasting friendship based on shared values as well as interests.

I am not talking about some U.S.-led “democracy crusade.” We cannot impose our values on other counties. Nor should we seek to. But the ideas of freedom, liberty and respect for human rights are not U.S. ideas, they are much more than that. They are enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and many other international covenants and treaties. They apply to citizens in Shanghai as much as they do to citizens in Johannesburg or Jakarta. And demands for liberty in China are Chinese, not American, demands. Just last year, many brave Chinese signed Charter 08, a Chinese document modeled on the great Czech statesman Vlacav Havel’s Charter 77. Charter 08 would not be unfamiliar to our Founding Fathers and was endorsed by Havel himself. No, we need not convince the Chinese people that they have inalienable rights. They are calling for those rights themselves. But we do have to worry about a China where the government suppresses the liberties its people hold dear.

Nothing of what I am saying should be seen as meaning conflict with China is inevitable. Quite the contrary. As I said, we welcome China’s responsible rise. America and China stood together against fascism during World War II, before ravages took over in China – we were ready to stand together with China to shape international politics after World War II. Much has been accomplished since President Nixon’s fateful visit. And again, we stand ready to work with what we hope will be a more open and responsible China on the challenges facing the 21st century.

All of you here know how deeply integrated the economies of the United States’ and China’s are. We rely on each other, sometimes unfortunately in unhealthy ways. America spends too much that we don’t have, and then we go to China as a lender of first resort. Our fiscal policy, lately, seems to be “tax, spend, borrow, tax some more, repeat” and then complain about how much debt China holds. America needs to gets its own fiscal house in order. That’s a Common Sense Conservative perspective. We can hardly complain that China holds so much of our debt when it’s over spending that created the debt.

But here’s the reality. If in fact the United States does the “right” thing – if we spend less and save more – then China will also have to rebalance its economy. We need to export more to China – and we’d like China to consume more of our goods – just as we need to save and invest more. This vital process – so crucial to both countries – is impeded by problems of market access. We must talk about these issues with more candor. If China adopts policies that keep our highest value products out of their markets, by manipulating technical standards or licensing requirements, our economic relationship suffers.

Our economic interdependence drives our relationship with China. I see a future of more trade with China and more American high-tech goods in China. But in order for that to happen, we need China to improve its rule of law and protect our intellectual property. We need to avoid protectionism and China’s flirtation with state-assisted “national champions.” On our part, we should be more open to Chinese investment where our national security interests are not threatened. In the end, though, our economic relationship will truly thrive when Chinese citizens and foreign corporations can hold the Chinese government accountable when their actions are unjust.

I see a bright future for America in Asia. One based on the alliances that have gotten us this far, one based on free and open markets, one that integrates democratic India into East Asia’s political life and one in which China decides to be a responsible member of the international community and gives its people the liberty – the freedom – they so desperately want. Sadly, however, our largest free trade agreement ever in Asia, with South Korea, sits frozen in the Congress. In contrast, China is behaving wisely in negotiating free trade agreements throughout Asia. We want an Asia open to our goods and services. But if we do not get our free trade act together, we will be shut out by agreements Asians our making among themselves.

All of you here follow global financial markets and economic policy closely, I know that it will come as no surprise to you that United States leadership on global trade and investment is being sorely tested at this moment. We are struggling with a monumental debate on whether fiscal discipline, or massive government spending, will drive a sustained recovery. We are struggling to repair the excesses that grew in our own economy and served as a trigger to a catastrophic collapse in the global financial system. And we are attempting to do so under the weight of a global imbalance of debt and trade deficits that are not only unbearable for the world’s mightiest economy, but also unacceptable in that they foster tensions between global economic partners like the United States and China.

I am proud to be an American. As someone who has had the tremendous opportunity to travel throughout the United States and listen to the concerns of Americans in towns and cities across the country, I can tell you that there is a sense of despair and even crisis afoot in America that has the potential to shape our global investment and trade policies for years, and even decades to come. Never has the leadership of our government ever been more critical to keeping my country, and the world, on a path to openness, growth and opportunity in global trade and investment. It would of course be a mistake to put the entire burden of restoring the global economy on the backs of America’s leaders. There is plenty of work for all of us to do in this matter. Governments around the world must resist the siren call of trade protection to bring short term relief during a time of crisis.

Those who use currency policy or subsidies to promote their nation’s exports should remain acutely aware that if there ever were a time in which such policies could be viewed as “tolerable,” that time has now passed. All participants who seek to find benefit in the global trading system must also take the responsibility of playing by the rules. The private sector has responsibilities as well. For instance, it should not be the responsibility of government to dictate the salaries of bankers or the ownership of companies. And yet, due of the excesses committed by some, this is exactly where we find ourselves now because government now owns substantial portions of the private economy – even, unbelievably, in the United States. These are challenging times for everyone, but we in the United States must humbly recognize that if we are to lead and to set the direction for the rest of the world, it must be by our example and not merely our words. And we must tread lightly when imposing new burdens on the imports of other countries.

Well, CLSA: My country is definitely at a crossroad. Polling in the U.S. shows a majority of Americans no longer believe that their children will have a better future than they have had...that is a 1st. When members of America’s greatest generation – the World War II generation – lose their homes and their life savings because their retirement funds were wiped after the financial collapse, people feel a great anger. There is suddenly a growing sentiment to just “throw the bums out” of Washington, D.C. – and by bums they mean the Republicans and the Democrats. Americans are suffering from pay cuts and job losses, and they want to know why their elected leaders are not tightening their belts. It’s not lost on people that Congress voted to exempt themselves from the health care plan they are thrusting on the rest of the nation. There is a growing sense of frustration on Main Street. But even in the midst of crisis and despair, we see signs of hope.

In fact, it’s a sea change in America, I believe. Recently, there have been protests by ordinary Americans who marched on Washington to demand their government stop spending away their future. Large numbers of ordinary, middle-class Democrats, Republicans, and Independents from all over the country marching on Washington?! You know something’s up! These are the same people who flocked to the town halls this summer to face their elected officials who were home on hiatus from that distant capital and were now confronted with the people they represent. Big town hall meetings – video clips circulating coverage – people watching, feeling not so alone anymore.

The town halls and the Tea Party movement are both part of a growing grassroots consciousness among ordinary Americans who’ve decided that if they want real change, they must take the lead and not wait to be led. Real change – and, you know, you don’t need a title to do it. The “Tea Party Movement” is aptly named to remind people of the American Revolution – of colonial patriots who shook off the yoke of a distant government and declared their freedom from indifferent – elitist – rulers who limited their progress and showed them no respect. Today, Main Street Americans see Washington in similar terms.

When my country again achieves financial stability and economic growth – when we roar back to life as we shall do – it will be thanks in large part to the hard work and common sense of these ordinary Americans who are demanding that government spend less and tax less and allow the private sector to grow and prosper. We’re not interested in government fixes; we’re interested in freedom! Freedom! Our vision is forward looking. People may be frustrated now, but we’re very hopeful too.

And, after all, why shouldn’t we be? We’re Americans. We’re always hopeful. Thank you for letting me share some of that hope, and a view from Main Street with you. God Bless You.

The foregoing is an excerpt from Governor Palin's CLSA speech as posted in her Facebook entry:

Sarah Speaks Out: A Post by Conservative Girl with a Voice

Last night Sarah wowed Hong Kong as she spoke from the heart. Like many of you, I anticipated this speech at the conference sponsored by the investment firm CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, and I prayed that God would guide her as she addressed the crowd. While the speech was closed to reporters (which is not uncommon), the AP was lucky enough to get a copy of the speech from an attendee who videotaped it. Although the speech was closed to the press, a few attendees were nice enough to tweet as Sarah spoke (without a teleprompter I might add). What an amazing technological world we live in. It was so fun to be able to read the tweets of those lucky enough to get a seat to the event. A couple of individuals who tweeted from the event were Cameron Sinclair (@casinclair) and @cellomonkey. Since the speech aired at 9:30 p.m. Pacific time, it was nice that I got to share this great experience with so many of my twitter friends and followers. While so many look down upon social network sites like Twitter and Facebook, the power and influence these websites hold are undeniable. Sarah even mentioned how much she loves Twitter and Facebook at the close of her appearance.

As I read each tweet, the two individuals tweeted, I saw the Sarah so many of us have come to know and love. According to an article from The Wall Street Journal, Sarah cited two former leaders, Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, as guides for how to get out of the current economic situation we find ourselves in. As she spoke, she held firm to the common sense ideals that are so desperately needed during these turbulent political times. In doing so, Sarah discussed important issues like health care and the current budget deficit; she also spoke of China. While speaking, Sarah remained vigilant in her belief that the Obama Administration is spending too much and growing the size of government:

"We got into this mess because of government interference in the first place.... We're not interested in government fixes, we're interested in freedom (The Wall Street Journal)."

In discussing health care, Sarah defended her previous statements about the "death panels" and blasted the government for thinking it can be successful when it has shown that it hasn't been in the past:

"It's just common sense that government attempts to solve problems like [the] health care problem will just create new problems (The Wall Street Journal)."

She also discussed the way in which real health care reform can be achieved by calling for "market friendly" reform in the form of tax breaks to individuals so that they can go out and purchase their own plans. In the past, she has also argued that individuals should be able to buy health insurance outside state lines, which in turn would drive down health care costs.

In terms of foreign policy, Sarah reiterated her message that we must continue the global fight against the war on terror, and according to The Wall Street Journal:

"Her speech marks an effort to reach out to an international audience and define her political identity since resigning from office earlier this year. Ms. Palin is among a handful of high-profile Republicans seeking a path back to power for a party that lost control of both houses of Congress and White House in last year's U.S. elections"

While this is true, it is also important to note that Sarah didn't place sole blame on the Democratic Party. She blamed both parties for the budget deficit and excessive spending. Sarah also blasted the Federal Reserve as The Wall Street Journal reports:

"Ms. Palin blamed the U.S. Federal Reserve's low interest-rate policy of previous years for setting the stage for last year's global financial crisis. She opposed appointing the Fed as the chief overseer of systemic risk in the U.S. financial system. 'The words fox and henhouse come to mind. The Fed's decisions have created the bubble.'"

Well said, Sarah. In bailing out banks and auto makers, the United State's government is walking down a slippery slope of full-on government control, which suggests Progressivism and opens the door to socialism.

Perhaps my favorite part of the speech was when she spoke of two greats: Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. These two individuals are big heroes in my book because they illustrate the phenomenal traits of what it is to be successful leaders. According to The Wall Street Journal:

"She described her political philosophy as a 'common-sense conservatism,' and said the free-market policies of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher should be guides for how to get out of the current economic situation. 'Liberalism holds that there is no human problem that government can't fix if only the right people are put in charge,' she said"

When the government begins to have greater control over our lives, where is the stopping point? One does not have to look far to see that the government seems to mess up every industry it comes into contact with. Examples include the Post Office, car industry and banks. Sarah is not afraid to say it like it is, which is so refreshing during a time in which it is hard to believe any politician. It seems that as soon as politicians arrive in Washington, they forget about those whom they were elected to serve, as Sarah would put it, us folks on "Mainstreet U.S.A."

Overall, the reports by the msm have been favorable toward the job Sarah did in giving the speech. Sarah not only proved that she is not going anywhere, but that she is in it for the long haul. Furthermore, she is going to continue to dominate the 24-hour news cycle whenever she she speaks out on issues that concern us "Mainstreet U.S.A." folks. As I read and let my Twitter friends and followers know about @casinclair and @cellomonkey"s tweets, I was lucky enough to receive the following tweet from Cameron Sinclair (@casinclair), who is also scheduled to speak at the conference:

@rachellefriberg OK speech with occasional hits. Interesting Palin attacked GOP more than Dems.

Like many, I view her speech as more than "OK," but I do agree with the point Sinclair made regarding Sarah attacking Republicans more than she did Democrats. I tweeted Mr. Sinclair back the following tweet:

@casinclair Thanks so much 4 tweeting us updates-I know that took a lot of fast-thinking :) I really admire Palin's independent streak.

Sarah is not afraid to speak out. She could care less about party because she cares more about speaking the truth and keeping our elected officials honest. Just because politicians have a "D" or "R" after their names, does not mean that they are right or wrong 100% of the time. It is important that we care less about what party someone belongs to and more about what they are actually say and believe. While Sinclair personally tweeted me last night, The New York Times published a story about Sarah's speech in which they said:

"Cameron Sinclair, another speaker at the event, said Mrs. Palin emphasized the need for a grassroots rebirth of the Republican Party driven by party leaders outside Washington."

While it is true Sinclair said this, he didn't say it to The New York Times, as he tweeted earlier today; instead, Sinclair posted the above comment over on his Facebook page. Isn't The New York Times sneaky? While I can say that I did directly hear from Sinclair himself, The New York Times did not. How awesome is that? I guess this paper did not or could not get into contact with Sinclair, so they took took it upon themselves to get the information directly from his Facebook page. I find it pretty cool that a normal everyday blogger like myself personally communicated with Sinclair, while a major newspaper could not. Man, oh man, how I love the power of Twitter.

In closing, I have to say how proud I am of Sarah and how honored I am to be one of her many supporters. Once again, Sarah spoke from the heart her valuable common sense message. She reiterated what we already know: Sarah is a woman who does not walk with the Washington herd. She is a true maverick who is saying and doing great things. Even though many do not always agree with her, it is clear they take notice whenever she speaks. In speaking on the same day as President Obama, she gave me hope, while the president did not. Sarah actually gave some remedies as to how we can heal our nation, while President Obama seemed to imply a one-world order in which we will all be on the same playing field, which is a scary thought given the power America holds. We are a country that is based of capitalism, the engine that drives our economy. We should be proud of our country. Why should we sacrifice any of this?

Many countries are oppressed and do not have the freedoms we, in America, have. What is so wrong with saying we are a great, strong country? What is so wrong with being proud? What is so wrong with supporting other countries such as Israel? While Obama apologizes for the actions of America, Sarah has always been proud to be an American and proud of what America stands for. This is so apparent in the way in which she speaks time and time again about America and those of us who live here. This is the kind of leader I want. This is the kind of leader I want speaking out for me. Sarah is a woman who is not afraid to speak of the love she has for her country. She is also not afraid to speak out on how American policy can be improved. Sarah's straight- shooting style is a refreshing change of pace from the ever-growing politics-as-usual mindset.

(I'm a Conservative Girl with a Voice!!! Visit my blog and become a follower: http://www.conservativegirlwithavoice.com. I'm on Twitter too @rachellefriberg)

Palin in Hong Kong

By Shane Vander Hart


In a speech that I thought Governor Sarah Palin was giving today, but then I remembered that today was yesterday in Hong Kong… and tomorrow is today, sigh – darned International Date Line.  Some excerpts of her speech at the CLSA Asia Pacific Markets Conference posted on WSJ’s Washington Wire:

A few snippets… you can read the rest there.

On Conservatism:

You can call me a common-sense conservative. My approach to the issues facing my country and the world, issues that we’ll discuss today, are rooted in this common-sense conservatism… Common sense conservatism deals with the reality of the world as it is. Complicated and beautiful, tragic and hopeful, we believe in the rights and the responsibilities and the inherent dignity of the individual.

We don’t believe that human nature is perfectible; we’re suspicious of government efforts to fix problems because often what it’s trying to fix is human nature, and that is impossible. It is what it is. But that doesn’t mean that we’re resigned to, well, any negative destiny. Not at all. I believe in striving for the ideal, but in realistic confines of human nature…

Regarding our financial crisis:

Lack of government wasn’t the problem. Government policies were the problem. The marketplace didn’t fail. It became exactly as common sense would expect it to. The government ordered the loosening of lending standards. The Federal Reserve kept interest rates low. The government forced lending institutions to give loans to people who, as I say, couldn’t afford them. Speculators spotted new investment vehicles, jumped on board and rating agencies underestimated risks.

On Cap-and-Tax:

American jobs in every industry will be threatened by the rising cost of doing business under this cap-and-tax plan. The cost of farming will certainly increase. That’s going to drive up the cost of groceries and drive down farm incomes. The cost of manufacturing, warehousing and transportation will also rise. We are all going to feel the effects. The Americans hardest hit will be those who are already struggling to make ends meet today, much less with this new tax every month…

On China:

The more politically open and just China is, the more Chinese citizens of every ethnic group will be able to settle disputes in court rather than on the streets. The more open it is, the less we’ll be concerned about its military buildup and its intentions. The more transparent China is, the more likely it is that they will find a true and lasting friendship based on shared values as well as interests. And I’m not talking about a U.S.-led democracy crusade. [We’re] not going to impose our values on other countries. We don’t seek to do that. But the ideas of freedom and liberty and respect for human rights, it’s not just a U.S. idea. They’re very much more than that. They’re enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and many other international covenants and treaties.

Be sure to read the whole post over at Washington Wire.

Josh Painter posted on early reaction to her speech from people who expressed their thoughts using social media.  The New York Times wrote a rare positive article on her speech:

A number of people who heard the speech in a packed hotel ballroom, which was closed to the media, said Mrs. Palin spoke from notes for 90 minutes and that she was articulate, well-prepared and even compelling.

“The speech was wide-ranging, very balanced, and she beat all expectations,” said Doug A. Coulter, head of private equity in the Asia-Pacific region for LGT Capital Partners…

…A number of attendees thought Mrs. Palin, the former vice presidential candidate, was using the speech to begin to broaden her foreign policy credentials before making a run for the presidency in 2012.

“She’s definitely a serious future presidential candidate, and I understand why she plays so well in middle America,” said Mr. Coulter, a Canadian….

…Melvin Goodé, a regional marketing consultant, thought Mrs. Palin chose Hong Kong because, he said, it was “a place where things happen and where freedom can be expanded upon.”

“It’s not Beijing or Shanghai,” said Mr. Goodé . “She also mentioned Tibet, Burma and North Korea in the same breath as places where China should be more sensitive and careful about how people are treated. She said it on a human-rights level.”

Mr. Goodé, an African-American who said he did some campaign polling for President Obama, said Mrs. Palin mentioned President Obama three times on Wednesday.

“And there was nothing derogatory in it, no sleight of hand, and believe me, I was listening for that,” he said, adding that Mrs. Palin referred to Mr. Obama as “our president,” with the emphasis on “our.”

Mr. Goodé, a New Yorker who said he would never vote for Mrs. Palin, said she acquitted herself well.

“They really prepared her well,” he said. “She was articulate and she held her own. I give her credit. They’ve tried to categorize her as not being bright. She’s bright.”

Then the Wall Street Journal in an Op/Ed posted this afternoon says that Governor Palin understand Beijing better than the Obama Administration does.

Mrs. Palin sees China's authoritarian nature as a security concern for the U.S. and its allies in Asia-Pacific, and she has a point. North Korea, Burma and other rogue regimes couldn't sustain themselves without Chinese support. Not to mention the hundreds of missiles Beijing has pointed at Taiwan and its navy's increasingly muscular attitude in the South China Sea…

…Mrs. Palin also espoused the value of alliances with like-minded democratic countries in the region such as Japan, Australia and India. The U.S. "can, must and should" work with China to address issues of "mutual concern," she said. "But we also need to work with our allies in addressing the uncertainties created by China's rise."

The Obama Administration could take a page from this book. So far, the White House has gone out of its way to downplay human rights in China and tiptoe around recent crackdowns in Tibet and Xinjiang, preferring to focus on hipper issues like climate change. This "don't ask, don't tell" approach to Beijing does no favors to the Chinese people, much less to the West's core interests in Asia. At the same time, America's other alliances in the region have been largely ignored. (read the whole article)

Well done Governor Palin in your debut on the paid speaker’s circuit.  A good step in building up foreign policy cred.

Shane Vander Hart is the editor of Caffeinated Thoughts.  You can follow him on Twitter and also friend him on Facebook.

Gov. Palin's Hong Kong Speech: Reagan Resurrected


Video Courtesy of New England Cable News (NECN)

Photo Spread

Photo Courtesy of CLSA. Governor Palin delivers 90-minute Reagan Conservative speech in Hong Kong.

Photo Courtesy of CLSA. CLSA Chairman and CEO, Jonathan Slone introduces Governor Palin and "quoted President Eisenhower on the responsibilities of citizens in a democratic society to debate issues that matter (Wheeler, 2009, ¶3).

Photo Courtesy of CLSA. Governor Palin delivers 90-minute Reagan Conservative speech in Hong Kong.

Synopsis and Distillation

The Wall Street Journal's reportage focused on Governor Palin's Reagan Conservatism; Bloomberg focused on her statements pertaining to the Federal Reserve, and perhaps the most surprising coverage of all came from the New York Times.

New York Times

"A number of people who heard the speech in a packed hotel ballroom...said...she was articulate, well-prepared and even compelling" (McDonald, 2009, ¶2). "Doug A. Coulter, head of private equity in the Asia-Pacific region for LGT Capital Partners" said Governor Palin "beat all expectations (McDonald, 2009, ¶3). "Cameron Sinclair, another speaker at the event, said Mrs. Palin emphasized the need for a grassroots rebirth of the Republican Party driven by party leaders outside Washington" (McDonald, 2009, ¶6). " 'She’s definitely a serious future presidential candidate, and I understand why she plays so well in middle America,' said Mr. Coulter, a Canadian" (McDonald, 2009, ¶8).

The most salient quotes came from Melvin Goodé, a regional marketing consultant, who is African-American and an Obama supporter. "[Governor] Palin chose Hong Kong because, he said, it was “a place where things happen and where freedom can be expanded upon” (McDonald, 2009, ¶16). “It’s not Beijing or Shanghai,” he said (McDonald, 2009, ¶17). Mr. Goodé's closing remarks: "She was articulate and she held her own. I give her credit. They’ve tried to categorize her as not being bright. She’s bright” (McDonald, 2009, ¶21). This is from an Obama supporter!


The Fed and the government sent a message to companies that “the bigger that you are, the more problems that you get yourself into, the more likely the government is to bail you out,” Palin said in the closed door speech, according to a tape of the event given to Bloomberg News. “Of course the little guys are left out then. We’re left holding the bag, all the moms and pops all over America” (Kate & Chan, 2009, ¶3).

“How can we think that setting up the Fed as monitor of systemic risk in the financial sector will result in meaningful reform,” she said. “The words ‘fox’ and ‘henhouse’ come to mind” (Kate & Chan, 2009, ¶9).

Wall Street Journal

"We got into this mess because of government interference in the first place....We're not interested in government fixes, we're interested in freedom," Governor Palin said (Cheng & Frangos, 2009, ¶2).

"She described her political philosophy as a 'common-sense conservatism,' and said the free-market policies of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher should be guides for how to get out of the current economic situation. 'Liberalism holds that there is no human problem that government can't fix if only the right people are put in charge,' she said" (Cheng & Frangos, 2009, ¶7).

"She called for tax cuts as well as the elimination of the capital-gains and estate tax. Then, she said, the world will 'watch the U.S. economy roar back to life'" (Cheng & Frangos, 2009, ¶11).

"'We all hope to see a China that is stable and peaceful and prosperous,' she said. But she added that the U.S. must work with Asian allies in case 'China goes in a different direction'" (Cheng & Frangos, 2009, ¶14). "On U.S.-China trade relations, Ms. Palin called for more openness and warned against protectionism. 'We need China to improve its rule of law, and protect our intellectual property,' she said. 'On our part, we should be more open to Chinese investment where our national security interests are not threatened'" (Cheng & Frangos, 2009, ¶16).


The foregoing compilation clearly documents 90 minutes of pure Reagan Conservatism. In her speech, Governor Palin called for small limited government, states rights, and peace through strength. Supporting the thesis that Governor Palin's appeal stretches from full right to center-left, she wowed even a die-hard Obama supporter with her speech.

Facebook user Catherine Yu Yeun Chen wrote on Governor Palin's Facebook Wall that a friend who was present at the speech reported "Sarah Palin was received with the biggest round of applause. It took three minutes at least before she was able to start her speech..."

This was absolutely a defining moment and a major accomplishment for Governor Palin. Today, an Obama supporter regarded her as brilliant. Today, the New York Times, that bastion of liberalism declared that Governor Palin is a credible candidate for 2012.

For this speech, Governor Palin earned a sum at least equal to an entire year of gubernatorial pay and one fifth of Obama's pay. Women all over the world should hold their heads high today. The world is trembling beneath her sonic boom, glass is exploding and the shards are falling to earth....


Cheng J. and Frangos, A. (2009, September 23). "Palin Addresses Asian Investors." Wall Street Journal. Retrieved September 23, 2009 from: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125368057547633229.html

In Hong Kong, Palin touts 'Main Sreet, U.S.A'. (2009, September 23). NECN. Retrieved September 23, 2009 from: http://www.necn.com/Boston/World/2009/09/23/In-Hong-Kong-Palin-touts/1253706988.html

Kate, D. T. and Chan, C. (2009, September 23). "Palin attacks Fed on Hong Kong visit, Wants ‘Responsible China.’ " Bloomberg News. Retrieved September 23, 2009 from: http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601074&sid=aDptsOIuwheU

McDonald, M. (2009, September 23). "Palin Speaks to Investors in Hong Kong." The New York Times. Retrieved September 23, 2009 from: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/24/us/politics/24palin.html

Wheeler, S. (2009, September 23). Governor Sarah Palin address 16th CLSA Investors’ Forum". Credit Lyonnais Securities Asia. Retrieved September 23, 2009 from: https://www.clsa.com/about-clsa/media-centre/2009-Media-releases/governor-sarah-palin-address-16th-clsa-investors-forum.php

Gov. Palin Lambastes Obama's Spending in Hong Kong Speech

According to Agence France Presse, Governor Palin said on September 23, 2009 the US government was wasting taxpayer's money and would exacerbate poverty in a 75-minute speech delivered to investors at the CLSA Investors Forum in Hong Kong (CLSA, 2009, ¶1).

The speech "covered Alaska, international terrorism, US economic policy and trade with China"(CLSA, 2009, ¶2). An anonymous European delegate regarded her as "brilliant." (CLSA, 2009, ¶5). The delegate elaborated, "She said America was spending a lot of money and it was a temporary solution. Normal people are having to pay more and more but things don't get better. The rich will leave the country and the poor will get poorer" (CLSA, 2009, ¶6).

She said the Obama's imposition of duties on Chinese imports was harmful to our relationship with China (CLSA, 2009, ¶11). Governor Palin praised President Reagan's economic policies and lambasted the Obama administration's interventions in economic affairs (CLSA, 2009, ¶12). She addressed terrorism threats to the United States and traditional allies such as Japan, Australia, and South Korea (CLSA, 2009, ¶13).

Governor Palin "blasted Obama's proposals on healthcare, reiterating a previous statement made to the press that the plan would include a bureaucratic 'death panel' that would decide who gets assistance, he said (CLSA, 2009, ¶20).


Though no transcript of the speech is available, the Agence France Press (AFP) report as re-broadcast by Breitbart provides a solid summary of what she spoke about and audience reaction. Those with left-leaning ideologies naturally did not like what Governor Palin had to say, and while there were a few of those (CLSA, 2009, ¶4 , 7), most investors liked her speech as indicated by the delegate who regarded it as brilliant.

One investor complained the speech over-focused on Alaska as an investment opportunity (CLSA, 2009, ¶15-16). But, Governor Palin is from Alaska, and that state is a significant trading port, and the place to invest in energy markets. If there was over-focus on Alaska, it will likely diminish over time, as Governor Palin transitions into a national role.

For her first foreign speaking engagement, Governor Palin's performance was by this account, nothing short of spectacular.


Palin slams Obama's spending in debut speech in Asia. (2009, September 23). Agence France Press. Retrieved September 23, 2009 from: http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=CNG.5c890613297fae5a68cbf119a882edf8.191&show_article=1