Some people are questioning the value of devoting all this energy to writing about the Palin Doctrine. After all, even if John McCain and Sarah Palin win the election, she’ll only be vice president. Which, Dick Cheney aside, isn’t really much of a position.
These people are forgetting something very important: John McCain’s health.
John McCain is 72. According to Social Security, he has a 1 in 7 chance of dying in the next four years. But his odds are actually worse, because McCain isn't one of the normal 72 year old American men in the actuarial tables: he's a former POW and cancer patient.
It’s not fair, but former Vietnam POWs continue to suffer from the malnutrition and abuse they experienced, and are dying off at a greater rate than the other men in their age group.
In the past, John McCain has responded to concerns about his health by pointing to his mother’s longevity. However, the men in his family haven’t fared nearly as well. John McCain’s father died of a heart attack at age 70. And his father’s father died of a heart attack at age 61.
Add on top of that the fact that he’s already had cancer, and has a greater likelihood of developing cancer again, and the prognosis is not good.
While there is a chance that John McCain will survive the next four years with no health problems, there is a significant probability that people who vote for McCain are electing Sarah Palin to be President.