June 15, 2009

Quick blog post

As I am shopping online for a pedestal sink and getting ready for Wilco tonight!

Sarah Palin just refuses to go away. Her right, of course, but she seems to be lessening her appeal rather than the opposite. I didn't hear the Letterman joke about her daughter, but it did sound tasteless and out of bounds. I like him, but like all good comedians, he will push the boundaries. This one went over the line, and Palin is correct to respond. But when you see her willingness to use her own children and family for her own political future, her outrage seems just more of the same political grandstanding. Saw this quote about her from Ta-Nehisi Coates that sums her up for me:
"Sarah Palin is in tenacious possession of a small mind."
Not just this, but just about everything she speaks to. Raging against socialism as she brags about redistributing oil revenues to Alaskan residents. Or saying that the cause of climate change doesn't matter, or that we should have the "Under God" phrase in the Pledge because it was "good enough for the Founders." She has generally reflected a lack of curiosity about the world around her, and yet John McCain thought she was good enough to put that close to the Presidency.


Now, back to work on the house.


ANewAnglican@gmail.com said...

Wait . . . so you're putting Wilco on a pedestal?

steves said...

Why would Palin go away? I am not really a fan, but she has a decent level of support among many conservatives. She also continues to be a major target for the Left. While some of the critiques have been intelligent and issue oriented, others have been just as nasty and venomous as they were during the election. The latter just seems to energize her supporters who will just see her as some kind of victim.

Streak said...

Anglican--I don't have to put Wilco on a pedestal. They came out on their own stage. :)

Steve, I am well aware that Palin still has support among some conservatives, but that is really my point. Has she demonstrated any grasp of policy? Has she really shown us that the campaign was some kind of aberration?

No. She has publicly feuded with her once-to-be son-in-law, and has lamented the American slide to socialism (because that is what right wingers do now) all the while bragging about the actual socialism she has brought to Alaska. All, of course, with the same self-awareness that had her suggesting that Alaska was where Putin posed his threat to our country.

The only substantive thing she has said, I would argue, is to chastize Letterman's joke about her daughter. But instead of addressing the broader implications of sexuality and our youth, she has turned it into her own vicious attack on Dave, and some kind of family feud.

I am reminded of West Wing when Bartlett met his challenger during the reelection and urged him to really study and demonstrate some understanding of policy. Palin has that opportunity, but has been busier jetting around to fund raisers rather than buckling down. She has alienated a lot of those Alaskans who elected her, and has really annoyed a lot of Republicans nationally. I am not the only one who thinks she needs to demonstrate some gravitas.

As it is, she has become the Paris Hilton of politics. Famous for being famous. And the fact that she still energizes her base only speaks to the lack of depth or substance in that Republican base.

steves said...

I am really torn when it comes to Palin. On one hand, I don't think she gets a fair shake to this day from the media. On the other hand, she does demonstrate many of the negative traits you mention. I also can't stand her pseudo-folksy speeches. They reek of insincerity.

As far as I can tell, she still enjoys a great deal of popularity among Alaskans, but I am basing this on the opinions of a few people. I honestly don't know much about the day to day happenings of Alaska.

I think she can continue to enjoy the support of many conservatives because of her 'populist' message. Plus, face it, most voters (on both sides) don't look for much depth in a candidate.

Streak said...

I agree on her pseudo-folksiness. Enough with the "you betcha."

She may not get a fair shake, I don't know. I do know that I have yet to see her put forward anything substantive. My comment about Alaska, btw, was that I read that several of her Republican colleagues were really annoyed with her jetting around, and she was even getting push back from them in the state legislature. Plus, while she enjoyed some Democratic support in her last election, she has frittered most of that away.

As for substance, I would suggest that the Democrats have at least put up more substantive candidates over the last 8 years. People may not have liked Al Gore or John Kerry, but they are not superficial people. The knock on them, and people like Hilary Clinton, was that they were often too detailed and wonkish on policy issues and incapable of communicating to the "people." In fact, I think Republicans have confused "populist" with "uninformed" or that is how it seems to play out. I really hate that anti-intellectual trend in conservative circles right now, and think that it is really not good for our Republic.

Palin, more than anyone since W himself, represents that trend. Perhaps that is unfair, but I have yet to see any proof that she has any depth.

steves said...

I'll agree that Kerry and Clinton have substance and are very intelligent. Gore, not so much, but that is just my opinion. The ideal candidate needs to be able to understand the details and appeal to people on a more simple, though not stupid, level. It isn't enough to be really smart if people don't like or understand your ideas. Obama was able to do this. McCain was not.