the palin drone

9/2/08

Okay, so my joke post was not appreciated by some of the commenters and a lot of you emailers. So let’s dispense with the horseplay, and I’ll tell you what I really think. Keep in mind that I am in no way affiliated with the Obama campaign other than voting for him – in fact, he says certain things are off-limits, but he’s a greater man than I am, and this is my blog. Admittedly, it’s a tiny lectern, but ’tis mine.

I wrote yesterday’s post because, like they say, we laugh to keep ourselves from crying. In reality, I find the Sarah Palin choice to be so dangerously simpleminded, so criminally stupid, so insulting to the intelligence of American voters that McCain and his entire party should be fucking ashamed.

How DARE they put this person so close to the leadership of this country – you’re telling me, in a world that has the possibility of loose nukes, economic collapse and the wanton subversion of the rule of law, that you’re going to put Sarah Palin one bad-fall-down-the-stairs away from leading the United States of America? I’m sorry, but please FUCK OFF.

That shows such disrespect to our Founding Fathers that I wouldn’t be surprised if the zombie skeletons of George Washington, James Monroe, and Alexander Hamilton crawled out of their graves in order to eat Karl Rove’s brain. Sarah Palin’s only executive experience before briefly governing our Least Populous State was being mayor of Wasilla, a town of 8400 people.

How many is 8400 people? Let’s use last season’s home Dook game as an example:

DukeGame08Demo(bl).jpg

Some GOP loyalists actually implied she has foreign policy experience because she lives so close to Russia – by that logic, Republicans should have no trouble getting LASIK surgery from somebody who lived very close to an opthamologist.

She – and the people around her – are so chunderheaded that they say things like “We’re proud of Bristol’s decision to have her baby and even prouder to become grandparents.” At the Republican convention, I heard a lady say “I think it shows real courage for Sarah to choose having a baby they knew had Down’s Syndrome.” Lost on all of these people are two words: “decision” and “choose”. If Sarah Palin had her way, ALL WOMEN WOULD HAVE NO CHOICE, AND NO DECISIONS.

My personal feelings are ugly and unsubstantiated. I feel like I knew families like the Palins. I grew up with them in Iowa and Utah. The press-on nails, the mall hair, the easy invocation of Jesus, the wrathful patriarchy. The eldest daughter, who has zero intention of listening to her mother, has sex with the local star hockey player, a hunk of mullet-headed meat whose MySpace page declares “I’m a fucking redneck”:

original.jpg

other quotes: “I like… fucking chilling, I guess.” “Ya fuck with me, I’ll kick your ass” and “I don’t want kids.”

Yes, these are the guys that’d routinely beat the shit out of me at school, they’re the ones that make fun of faggots, they’re the ones banging on the plexiglass windows during the Florida recount in 2000. One can’t get too mad, though – this poor bastard Levi just underage-fucked his way into No More Fun With the Boys. No more “shooting the shit”, no more hockey: as soon as the election is over, he’s got an eternity of screaming babies, screaming wife and screaming grandparents hovering over him at the Applebee’s in Juneau.

Do I have baggage? Fuck right I do. We all do. But I’ve had it with wingnuts telling me what I’m not allowed to mention in public discourse after the way they have savaged progressives and their families over the last ten years. Do not ask me to provide specifics; I am not going to line ducks up for you to shoot.

So there you have it: a middling, C-minus pro-lifer who wants to put creationism back in the schools, and believes the Iraq war is a mission sent to our soldiers by God. Her stance on family reeks of the worst kind of hypocrisy, and until very recently, she had no idea what the Vice-President even does. If I were a woman still stinging from Hillary’s loss, I would tell John McCain’s campaign to EAT SHIT.

This is proof that the ruling class of Republicans don’t give a fucking fuck about America – this is just a game to them. Listen to them chortle at the convention about how the Sarah Palin choice got liberals in a tizzy. That’s because to them, it’s about the tizzy, not about America. It’s about confusing, obfuscating, triangulating and just plain bullshitting. It’s not about the country.

Fuck the whole lot of them. I have no desire to be a team player, I have no desire to be bi-partisan. I want Obama to win, and then I want to STICK IT to the other guys, keep twisting the knife until it hurts. I want them to be so thoroughly humiliated that their brand of thinking goes back into the Chest of Failed Ideas along with Stalinism, slavery and New Coke.

And yet, I do respect and am quite attached to the conservatives who comment here. All posts like these do is just bum all of you out. Which is why, when it comes to certain things, obviously a joke is much, much better.

0 thoughts on “the palin drone

  1. LFMD

    This is one of your best posts (and one of my favorites). You have articulated my exact thoughts on this Palin choice. . . the announcement of Palin as the running mate has horrified me to no end. And it all gets worse. . . the pregnant daughter. . .the MySpace redneck. . .
    I have been trying to figure out WHAT MCCAIN WAS THINKING when he picked her, but I have been giving him the benefit of the doubt that he does not deserve. I think that everything you stated is right on.
    I hope that McCain goes down in flames.

    Reply
  2. Sean M

    When I read that the redneck babydaddy was headed to the convention, that the right-wingers are turning these kids into heroes and it’s actually working, all reason went out the door. If this were some sort of board (OK, video, stepping into 2008) game, i’d tip my hat to McCain for a job well done. Seeing as it’s reality, I’m really f***ing scared.
    I’m packing my bags for Coastopia. I hope I don’t need them, but I feel the need to prepare for a quick exit if I do.

    Reply
  3. Bean

    Ditto to you both. I feel physically ill everytime I see a photo of Palin or hear her name. Frankly, I can think of many other women in politics that I would like to see in a position of power less than her. I just hope that women voters will see past the fact that she’s a woman and realize just how horrible it would be to have her (and McCain) in power.

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  4. kent

    All I have to say was I feel bad for Sarah Palin. It was fun when Wonkette coined the term GILF for her a while back. But now McCain, after apparrently very little vetting has throwner her into the buzz saw.
    I’m every bit the radiclib that Ian is, if not moreso, but I truly am someone who tries to live and let live. I’m from Iowa and we’re accustomed to smiling and nodding when people say things we don’t agree with, as long as they don’t get all up in our business. Hell I dearly love some of my Mormon relatives who make Sarah Palin look like Susan B Anthony.
    And no, I don’t want her one tainted Ensure away from the Presidency, especially compared to a guy like Joe Biden. But when you think about it, being President is an impossible job, and who among us is really truly qualified? It’s the nature of the job that no matter who gets it, they’re going to be tested severely. And some decent Presidents have looked pretty unlikely going in — Gerald Ford being my favorite.
    But anyway, it’s probably the better part of valor to leave the personal shit out of any discussion of Palin — she has real problems as a candidate that are much more worthy of our attention.

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  5. Schultz

    Good stuff. Keep it up! You entire focus is on the Republicans and not your own party’s strengths.
    The “We Suck Less” campaign didn’t work last time. I’m betting that Democrats are so agitated and bothered by Palin that they could lose this election when it should be an easy win. Yes I said it- there is no way in hell Obama can lose this election.
    We could go on and on for weeks about this (and I suspect that will happen in the media). The longer you stay in the gutter, the better chance of something cropping up about Obama or Biden and then all hell will break looose.
    So rant away- tell us about how stupid Republicans are and how mad you have become. It certainly is not becoming of your self-annointed title of “The Intelligent Party”. :-)

    Reply
  6. Jody

    You know, I love crazy breeding VPilf cougars like Palin.
    My wife loves to ride motorcycles, ATV’s, drink bourbon and has recently familiarized herself with her latest 20 gauge Mossberg Persuader (It’s not for hunting).
    I love my Mom, who at 17 kept me during high school whilst being salutatorian (sp?) and cheerleader captain.
    My family and friends have impeccable resumes of born-again, Pentecost, NRA, farming and being right-hand assistants to Jerry Falwell type activities.
    I was just approached last night by the food critic for the local Indy type rag to review my noted wild game roasts that I host in my urban backyard. The wild game that my 12 y.o. kills.
    I was going to write in Ron Paul and I am ready for the hard currency/barter economy to kick in at any time as long as it’s safe to come out of my panic room when my stores run out.
    I love successionist tendencies, be they Texas, Northern California, the south, Alaska or Coastopia.
    Sadly, this person cannot be in national office. It’s just not going to work. I love her personally and every batshit crazy redneck thing she does. I’d love to get in a big drunken shovel fight with Levi and then compliment each other’s NoFear shirts.
    One of the closest candidates to this was Andrew Jackson, a great federal bank hater who cleared out a lot of Indians so honkeys could get along a little better. He was quite controversial even when shootin’, Libertarian, Indian killin’ ways were all the rage. We’re well past that now.
    But now I’m gonna have to vote for Obama. I’d like to speak more strongly for him but I can’t, we have little in common and his political record is pretty thin.

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  7. Anne

    Hell yeah! This is the kind of rhetoric that brought me to Coastopia and made me an IFFL. (Ian Fan For Life)
    That being said: Mmmmmmm, hockey players.
    ~~SLAP!~~ Oops, sorry… got distracted there.

    Reply
  8. Killian

    THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. Forwarding this link to every fence-sitter I know (unfortunately, more than I’d like to admit.
    Mary Ann (from Gilligan’s Island) and Palin. . .Oh my!!! ;-/

    Reply
  9. CM

    I was about to write what LFMD wrote, and then I saw that she wrote it: This was one of your best posts ever. This is so true:
    “How DARE they put this person so close to the leadership of this country – you’re telling me, in a world that has the possibility of loose nukes, economic collapse and the wanton subversion of the rule of law, that you’re going to put Sarah Palin one bad-fall-down-the-stairs away from leading the United States of America?”
    This should be forwarded like the Coastopia post, but I wonder what the end result could be if McCain backtracked now. He could ask Sarah to remove herself from the ticket, like McGovern did with Eagleton, but what if McCain picks someone WORSE to satisfy the wingnuts??
    Also, the line about the hockey player giving up his fun for a life of being a daddy at 18…I had that thought too, but you articulated it so well. Oops! Sorry, young fella.
    You know, I do have friends who would love to adopt that baby and give him/her a good home. Perhaps a deal can be made.

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  10. Bozoette Mary

    What’s interesting to me is that the real Bible-believin’ fundies don’t like her either, because she has the audacity to have a career rather than staying home to raise her five kids as the Bible commands. So McSame may have shot himself in the foot with his pandering to the social conservatives.

    Reply
  11. jersey

    Bravo, Ian. Well said. Count me among those raised in a GOP house, and voted for W – twice (forgive me Father, for I have sinned) that will be pulling the lever for Obama in November. I had planned on doing so prior to the GILF selection for VP, but that seals the deal. Wasn’t it the GOP stalwart Reagan that said, “surround yourself with the best people you can find?” How the f*ck is Palin an example of that!?! For the love of all that’s holy, what was McCain thinking? For a guy that’s been hitting Obama on judgement and experience, didn’t he just strike out on both counts? Look, I realize that I’m setting myself up to have my wealth redistributed. So be it. Wifey won’t be able to build that pool and guest house at the beach next year. Life goes on. Miss Perino, here’s our “chance for input every four years.” Let’s not get it wrong, people. I’m a believer in voting for the best candidate, and that’s Obama all day long.

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  12. Matt

    There’s a name for people who feel no guilt about something for which they should. We’re all partisan’s here — or at least most of us are — so that’s not the point. But when it comes to politics, some folks are so certain of their own righteousness and the other side’s inherent evilness, that they lose the ability to think straight; they’ll believe the most outrageous things and repeat the most vile lies — lies which would embarrass normal people — and cross any line, because they think it’s justified. Nothing is more important than getting their way and they are incapable of feeling guilt over their misbehavior. They are political sociopaths.
    It’s ironic that folks get furious about lies told about their man Obama, yet uncritically partake in spreading lies themselves. Some right here on this blog (the fake pregnancy, Palin belonged to a seccessionist party, she supported Pat Buchanan, she wants creationism taught in schools, etc.).
    I happen to think Palin’s presently unqualified to be president, but then so is Barack Obama and he wants the starting job. (He’s qualified because… he’s been campaigning for 2 years? He’s been on Meet the Press? He’s a 1st term senator?) She has some expertise in certain policy issues, like energy, for example, which dwarfs that of the other candidates. But I’d like the VP to have more. I’ve been upfront on my opinion of McCain, too, and he’s only getting my vote because he’s the lesser of two poor choices.
    All this hate being directed to Palin, however, is patently unfair (some of it sexist, though not the criticism of her qualifications), and people are taking notice. The MSM has tried it’s best to ignore troubling questions about their favorite candidate (Ayers, Rezko, Biden’s favors for his lobbyist son, etc.) and people are noticing that, too. McCain-Palin just might win and if they do, I will not have any sympathy toward those who smeared Palin and her family.

    Reply
  13. Joanna

    And what about the passport?! My god, the passport! I’m almost more tormented by this than any of her other frightening shortcomings.

    Reply
  14. GFWD

    If you go the far left hand side of that photo and come up about a third from the bottom, I was just to the left of that point watching that game. It sucked to lose, but it was still fun to be in that crowd. Besides, we beat them the next time we faced them in Hansbrough Indoor Stadium.

    Reply
  15. CM

    Matt, I agree with a lot of what you say, and it astounds me how otherwise smart people believe untruths about Obama, so it wouldn’t be fair to spread the same rumors about Sarah Palin.
    However, your mention of creationism raised an eyebrow because even my mom told me that Palin was for teaching it in schools. So I just Googled it. According to the Associated Press, she is in favor of teaching creationism alongside evolution, although she hasn’t implemented any creationism mandates and says she wouldn’t. So I guess it’s half true. I was trying to post the link to the AP article here, but the post was rejected for “questionable content,” probably because it looks like spam…but Google and you’ll find it.

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  16. mom

    After all my ranting about Hillary during the primaries…
    I have to say that Palin makes Clinton look fabulous. In fact, I got to the point where, had it not been for the anchor/albatross of Bill, I would have liked to see Hillary on the Obama ticket.
    But there will be worthy women running for vp and president beginning very soon. There are already women of quality, equal to any man, in the congress and in governorships and other high offices around the country.
    Palin…. insulting not just to women, but to all American voters.

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  17. Small Town Southerner

    Palin is bait and we seem to be taking it.
    We (the Dems) are expected to say enough offensive things about her that conservatives feel they have no choice but to circle the wagons to support “that poor woman” and “that poor girl”.
    She also gives the ticket trailer-dweller street cred (or maybe that should be dirt road cred). Huntin’, fishin’ and four-wheelin’? Yee Haw!
    So what that husband Todd was a bona fide secessionist and that she attended AIP meetings and made video pep talks for them? Hell, that just shows that Alaska really is the northernmost Southern state.
    As for the passport issue (she got one for the first time in 2007, so she could visit the troops in Kuwait), this will be further proof of her beltway outsider status. (Note that the loudest applause during good ole Fred’s speech was for her outsider-ness.
    Perhaps this is where political discourse sinks even further, from Miss America to the WWF?
    The only way to win is to remember that “Silence is the best answer to the stupid.”
    As Schultz said, if we focus our energies on them, they benefit. That’s the Law of Attraction in action: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Law_of_Attraction).
    So, here’s to O’ and Joe, the best people for the job!

    Reply
  18. craighill

    “How DARE they put this person so close to the leadership of this country – you’re telling me, in a world that has the possibility of loose nukes, economic collapse and the wanton subversion of the rule of law, that you’re going to put Sarah Palin one bad-fall-down-the-stairs away from leading the United States of America? I’m sorry, but please FUCK OFF.”
    i would say the same thing to you if biden was at the top of the ticket. at least we have the sense to put the more experienced candidate where they belong on the fucking ticket.
    i’m sorry, but eat shit and fuck off right back, ian.

    Reply
  19. Matt

    CM, I read the full text of her remarks on the subject of creationism in schools and she did indicate she believed it and saw no reason why it shouldn’t be “taught alongside”, but clarified her position that it shouldn’t be included in text books and meant only that it should be allowed to be discussed “if brought up in class.” So that one is a half truth. By the way, depending on what we mean by “creationsim” it isn’t that remarkable of a belief. Is the world 7,000 years old? Of course not! Is it possible that God created the universe as some great recipe (creator and cause of the Big Bang? i.e. the First Mover)? I think yes.
    “One of the closest candidates to this was Andrew Jackson…”
    actually, one of my all time favorite presidents has some similarities. He was an avid hunter, rough outdoorsman-type, first term governor (2 yrs) with a proven reputation as an anti-corruption reformer before being tapped for VP at the age of 43. Teddy Roosevelt. Of course, he was by then a war hero and former Asst. Secretary of the Navy, but… And nevermind how he ascended to the presidency…

    Reply
  20. Caroline

    Ian, I whole-heartedly agree with you. Who knew this would ever happen? Yay, us. BTW, any Daily Show watchers out there? I want a tee-shirt that says Vagina-Americans for Obama. Hey, how are you feeling after all your tummy drama? -Caroline

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  21. once a heel

    Ian, it is your pulpit and I say preach on brother! But you’re only preaching to the choir.
    I consider myself a fence-sitter. I don’t know if I’m a “typical” or “representative” fence-sitter, and certainly I don’t presume to speak for anyone myself, but I thought I might throw my 2-cents into what is frequently an otherwise partisan environment. By way of “full” disclosure, in the past I’ve voted democrat, I’ve voted republican and I’ve not voted. I’m highly-educated, of decent means (though certainly not “wealthy” by either McCain or Obama’s criteria). I attend a church and believe in God. Though I grew up in a conservative family in an upper-middleclass, predominantly white suburb, like many of my peers I consider myself “enlightened” when it comes to matters of race, gender, lifestyle, etc. I’m also self-aware enough to know that I really have no idea what it’s like to be poor, or black, or gay, or a women. On social issues I’m a mixed bag – on some issues I would be considered liberal, on others I would be considered conservative – but I also like to think that my beliefs are sufficiently nuanced as to defy clear pigeon-holing. I’m not happy about the war in Iraq, but we’ve made a mess and we can’t just pick up and leave either. However, if we’re ever going to get things remotely stable there we’re going to need some help. I believe that our institutions, be they governmental, educational, financial, (even philanthropic and religious) etc., are geared to serve/maintain the institutions themselves, rather than the people, and therefore cannot realistically be “fixed” or “relied upon”. Since we also can’t afford to do away with them we might as well keep them as small as possible though I believe neither party will do so. Though “I am not personally a racist”, I believe the game is rigged against minorities and the poor. I believe we are in the midst of abandoning an entire section of Americans because we have mistakenly replaced social policy with economic policy, and frankly we don’t “need” these people for the economy anymore.
    All this is a long-winded way of saying that for me, as a fence-sitter, most of what I’ve read here today is, ultimately, full of sound and fury signifying nothing. On a personal level, I think I might rather like a colorful gal like Palin and I have yet to read anything that would suggest she has failed to serve her constituents in AK. I don’t think the stupid things a teenager puts on his blog speak to her ability to govern nor do I think her daughter’s pregnancy reflects on the sincerity of her views on family nor the relative merits of abstinence for that matter (afterall, I can’t tell you how many of my peers, despite receiving sex-ed in the public schools as early as 4th or 5th grade, and with easy access to a variety of contraceptive alternatives, nevertheless still engage(d) in irresponsible behaviors that led to undesirable consequences – doesn’t mean they too got bad advice, just that they still made bad choices). Right now, all this petty nonsense goes into the same little dustbin in the brain along with the “Obama’s not American” or “Obama’s just a rock star/messiah” rhetoric. While I realize this sort of clap-trap fires up the bases, and is unavoidable in a country where we have the attention span of a flea and yet have to fill up a 24hr/7day/1000-channel news cycle, I’ll just withhold judgment and wait for the dust to settle and more serious dialogue on what’s she’s really about rather than what she looks like, which crazy relative she reminds me of, or purported “policy beliefs” supported with the same appropriate context/academic rigor as unsolicited chain emails.
    In the end I fully expect her to be obviously under qualified. Unfortunately it became clear to me long-ago that whether it be choosing president or supreme court justices, collectively we are so unbelievably unable to move beyond even the smallest piece of baggage that unavoidably comes with the years of experience we profess to desire. In the end we’re going to increasingly get relatively green, blank slates (Bill Clinton, GWB, Obama, Palin) and have to hope for the best.
    If nothing else, eight years of GWB should have taught us that the executive branch is bigger than one person. You want to help this fence-sitter make a choice, let me know who gets a seat at the table when decisions are made whether it’s the VP or the Deputy Chief of Staff. In the end, all I probably really need to about Palin is that she doesn’t have any history with McCain. When hard choices/decisions need to be made, she won’t/can’t have had the trust/relationship w/McCain to truly influence his decisions, can she? Unfortunately, we likely won’t know who’s really in the inner circle for either candidate until it’s all over as information defeats the whole point of the blank slate. And no, that doesn’t mean that I’m going to be fooled into thinking Rev. Wright will be seated at Obama’s table either so please save those emails as well.
    And Ian, if it’s not clear, this is not offered as a critique, simply another voice. It’s a witty, well-written, thought-provoking place you’ve got here.

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  22. LFMD

    I am working from home today, and I have been watching CNN. This Sarah Palin thing is such fucking bullshit. She does not even have a passport. Miss Lucy has one! I have one! Sarah Palin does not. As David Gergen said (p.s.: he is my new crush. I love him!), this is not an elitist issue. . . it shows a general lack of curiosity about the world that would be a BASIC REQUIREMENT for a VP.
    I just watched McCain shake hands with the redneck baby daddy. Since when does the Conservative Right Wing embrace unwed pregnant teens??? I am sorry, but it is 2008, and if a teen daughter gets knocked up, it means that something is amiss in the family. Lack of education, failure to talk with your kids, etc.
    How is a pregnant teen daughter an admirable family value? WTF????
    David Gergen also pointed out that McCain’s big argument is that Obama lacks experience. . . and then he turns around and picks Palin who has even less experience. But, suddenly it does not matter.
    I just know that I am going to watch Palin tonight, and I will probably get myself so upset!
    Do you think that McCain has had a stroke and nobody noticed? And now it has impaired his judgment? No, seriously!

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  23. GFWD

    [I initially wrote this in response to yesterday’s commentary, but it still fits today]
    The media has been going after candidates since Washington was running for
    office. That’s not something new that the Palins were the first to be
    presented with after she was selected. She was vetted. She’s run for big
    time office out in Alaska. She’s got the experience poor ol’ Obama lacks.
    Or, to put it in the common speak of the very class you believe I’ve
    dismissed, “this ain’t her first rodeo.”
    And, if you believe the rumors about trooper-gate (whether it was the
    trooper who dated her relative or the supervisor of that trooper), she is
    savvy enough to play political hardball when it suits her. This just hammers
    home one of my underlying themes all day long. You can’t have it both ways.
    She can’t be both a shrewd and intelligent choice and also a victim because
    people with cameras and microphones want answers to things which are
    literally thrust in their face. Is that your unwed, pregnant daughter on
    stage with you? Interesting.
    If she’s truly worried about her family, she tells McCain, “thank you sir,
    but no thank you”. And then retires back to the heliopad to go moose
    hunting. Or is it meese?
    But, she didn’t. Shock! Like all of the other three candidates, Palin also
    has ego. She has ambition. Traits all good leaders have. And she clearly
    didn’t have a problem being used by McCain to garner the votes of the
    disaffected Rodham-ites still upset that Hillary lost. Because, unlike the
    breadth of experience–however plagiarized–Biden can offer Obama about how
    life inside the beltline works, I doubt McCain went up to Palin like Coach
    Belicheck might interview an offensive coordinator: “Hey, I hear you’ve
    developed a great new offensive program that can ensure me both a winning
    season and a Super Bowl.”
    Rather, I think it’s more akin to when the Knicks
    acquired Gerald Wilkins as a free agent to be the “Jordan Stopper”. I don’t know if Palin may one day become the greatest statesperson this
    nation has ever seen. I do believe, however, that her statesmanship was probably the least important factor when she was added to the ticket. If Wilkins was the Jordan Stopper, Palin is the “Rodham-ite Wooer”.
    Is she
    real? Yes, she’s as real as they come. Leader, wife, mother and proud
    American. Does that get her a pass from the colonoscopy of media scrutiny each of the other
    candidates endured? Hell no. If she’s upset that the media is talking about her
    daughter, I can’t wait til they quiz her on her pastor’s Sermon #465 from
    the 42nd Sunday back in 2001.
    Palin was tapped solely because the Republicans believe they can make an end
    run to capture what they hope is a sea of pissed off women eager to get another woman in office.
    In response to Matt’s comments, I fail to see the nuanced difference between “teaching alongside” and the infuriating quote that you feel insinuates she’s for “teaching creationism”. Sounds the same to me.
    Why is there so much effort on the part of some folks who may support Palin and the theory of creationism to teach it in the public school system? Wouldn’t you agree that even discussing the subject opens up a Pandora’s Box for the teacher, school, or school system for something that closely related to religion? Holy Slippery Slopes.
    I used to talk with my Catholic priest about this and he was strongly against any blurring of the State and Religion.
    What happens when the teacher who wants to talk about creationism teaches the alternate theory of Buddism instead of the Christian ideals which so many are fighting for? Or if scripture from the Koran is taught. Or, gasp, what if the teacher is Jewish and wants to talk about that?
    Or, if your school system has the foresight to see the potential pitfalls and you agree on “talking points” or curriculum, which religion wins out? Catholicism? It’s the oldest Christian religion. Presbyterian, Methodist, Episcopalian, Baptist? Who wins?
    Isn’t it simpler, cleaner and more fair to say, unequivocally, “NO” to any theories that aren’t purely scientific and leave the religion to the parents, the churches and the Sunday School teachers?

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  24. Catherine T.

    Even though I am usually in favor of clear-headed, fair-minded, moderately tempered discussion when it comes to politics, I really loved this post. xxo

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  25. Matt

    “…people with cameras and microphones want answers to things which are literally thrust in their face. Is that your unwed, pregnant daughter on stage with you? Interesting.”
    This is great spin. The ludicrous smear wasn’t that her daughter was pregnant now, it’s that she had already given birth and they were all lying about it. Now you want to claim vindication on the smear? That’s laughable, as is the insistence that Obama is qualified to be president (or that he’s more qualified than VP-nominated Palin). And all this “redneck babydaddy” and accusations that there’s something wrong with families if their teenage daughter gets pregnant reflect poorly on those critics. And Christians are the self-righteous ones?
    I disagree with this blog on most things political, but I always respected Ian as a decent person. Stooping so low as to attack minor children in order to make cheap political points is despicable.

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  26. Matt

    P.S. I heard Biden say yesterday that he thought Palin was qualified. That’s more than he would say about Obama during the primary debates. Tonight’s speech will be interesting and the public will learn of what she’s made.

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  27. Rebecca

    Matt: How exactly is a speech written by an army of other people going to show us what she’s made of? Should we be impressed that she’s a good reader?

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  28. wottop

    Matt, I still think that the point is lost here.
    The right wing is exceptional at being morally indignant. When the questionable moral choice arises in an opponent, they shout from the mountain tops and make the debate center around it.
    When the same is seen on their side, they go for spin, and somehow, get morally indignant about the attack on them. And this is after the Dem candidates have already said “Families are off-limits”
    Amazing that there is a monopoloy on morals. As a moderate, I can’t tell you how astounding this is: How each side can be so blinded by the belief that they are completely correct.

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  29. Matt

    “How exactly is a speech written by an army of other people going to show us what she’s made of? Should we be impressed that she’s a good reader?”
    Rebecca, you might as just as easily asked this question about Obama, since reading other people’s words in his speeches is practically his only accomplishment. I suspect we’ll find that Palin is not a wallflower, that’s what I mean. The shameful way you and other leftist are treating her and her family is not going unnoticed by voters who don’t care if she would fit in at a Manhatten cocktail party.

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  30. Terri

    Other than in the Constitution, where are the qualifications to hold the office of President and Vice-President posted? If they’re not, what are they, and why? Just putting the question to the true experts on both sides, all of whom, apparently, are regular visitors/commentators to this blog …

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  31. GFWD

    God Bless “wottop” for succinctly making the point I tried to make.
    The party of traditional family values circles the wagons when one of their own strays from that sacred model, but blast gays and lesbians and anyone else whose lifestyle doesn’t fit their utopian ideal. And, again I reiterate that they’d probably blast “LaBristol” from Cabrini Green for the very same choice as Palin’s daughter.
    At least Schultz had the coins to admit (in an earlier post) that he wouldn’t have been thrilled to learn about Bristol 2 weeks ago. Why can’t you, Matt, express the same balanced opinion? Instead you jut your jaw out and dare anyone to cross the line of morality you arbitrarily mark down in the dirt from time to time.
    Hell Matt, you’re no better than the shameful, SHAMEFUL Rebecca!
    Rebecca, you know I love you. Just made me giggle since I know you and Matt clearly does not.
    For the record, I applaud the way Palin’s family has embraced the daughter and encouraged her and given her support. That’s what families are supposed to do. Hell, Obama’s dad was practically a ghost during all of his life, save one meeting the two had.
    But, if that’s the reality, then come out and blast the folks in her own party who would otherwise regard Palin with disdain if not for her selection as VP, her means and her good looks.
    I’d stand up and applaud her speech from my couch and risk waking my kids up if she had the coins like Schultzy (I don’t know, you just seem like a good beer-drinking Schultzy to me) to say:
    “This isn’t what I planned. It may not be traditional values, but by God, she’s my daughter . . . that’s gonna be my grandchild and I’m with her until the end. And while I’m up here, maybe we should also re-think our views of who can marry and who can adopt. If nothing else over the past 5 monhts watching my daughter carry life’s greatest gift, I’ve learned that “traditional values” seems a little exclusive. Seems a little outdated and I think we need to make a change.”
    If she got her speech writer to say something like that–more eloquently for sure–those fence straddlers would perk up and start giving her a closer look.

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  32. Ian

    Awesome debating in here today. I even agree with a few nanoparticles of what the right-leaners have to say, except to point out that I already know my failings as an unbiased political observer, and I’ve already accepted my inability to change anyone’s mind on anything. I’ve also come to grips with my inherent mean-spiritedness and unfair brushstrokes, so you might want to save your breath.
    Matt, Obama writes his own speeches. Famously so.
    Craighill, the next time I see you, I’m going to open up a 1976 Ardbeg single cask malt and toast to our differences.

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  33. CM

    “I’ve already accepted my inability to change anyone’s mind on anything.”
    Not true. There are a lot of people here, and a lot of points made on your blog and in the comments. You never will know when someone’s mind is changed, on something small or large.

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  34. Matt

    Ian: Oh, really? http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/19/us/politics/19campaign.html?fta=y
    And we all know what Sarah Palin writes or doesn’t because… (By the way, in the article linked Obama says he “wrote most”, not all in his speeches. Even the stuff he didn’t lift from others. But I’m glad he does it well, since it is his primary accomplishment.)
    GFWD, there isn’t time in the day to respond to everyone or everything. But since you are so interested, I don’t think it’s a good thing for teenagers to have kids. It limits their options in life and puts them at greater risk for poverty and having their education shortened. I don’t think less of them, it doesn’t make them bad people and it doesn’t mean they have bad parents. This is true whether they live in the Governor’s Mansion in Juneau or Cabrini Green in Chicago. Sorry to disappoint you.

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  35. ChrisM

    Palin was selected to bait the left into treating her in precisely this manner. The inevitable gusher of mean-spirited condescension directed at this small-town, blue-collar woman angers the Republican base like little else. To them, she is a martyr. If Palin gets McCain elected, those who took the bait will have no one to blame but themselves.

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  36. Bill

    This post got nearly everything right…except the most important thing: “ophthalmologist”
    (from a guy who has to write that word like 50 times a day)
    Bill
    (employed by the American Academy of Ophthalmology, aao.org or geteyesmart.org)

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  37. Schultz

    I don’t really drink a lot of beer….I just LOOK like I drink a lot of beer. :-)
    Here’s my last thought not that anyone cares….
    If Palin is so bad- why all the fuss?
    Shouldn’t Democrats be rejoicing at this obvious and disastrous pick?
    I sense some serious insecurity here and all I can do is laugh. It is hilarious to me that many of you seemed so concerned about all those poor, unintelligent people that have been shammed! Please save us! We’re so stupid!!!!
    But I digress…….I am going fishing. Have fun, have a great week and weekend and PLEASE…lose some more sleep over Palin.

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  38. Rebecca

    Greg, I love you too! Matt, I was only being half serious. Clearly, based on our current leader, the American people DO NOT elect a President based on the eloquence of their speeches, regardless of who wrote them!

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  39. Lee

    And why isn’t anyone talking about the HUGE Bridge to Nowhere LIE??? Her very first speech contained that gigantic lie and we’re all distracted about some Jerry Springer baby stories. And the AIP party is huge, too. WTF?
    GO IAN!

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  40. Neva

    Or, Lee, how about the “reformer” hiring lobbyists to get some earmarked millions for her little town of 9,000. Glad she’s fighting the good fight against corruption.
    I am actually sorry that McCain didn’t have the guts to pick his first choice, Leiberman. The story I hear is that he knew if he did that there would be several right wing groups who would launch their own candidates, ensuring him no hope to win and possibly splintering the party. I personally think the party could use some splintering. Didn’t it seem palpably uncomfortable for people to praise McCain’s maverick history of going against his own party right there in front of that party last night? What I heard was, “Look at our little bad boy, isn’t he cute how he acts up, but he’s come home to us after all because he know where his bread is buttered. And, we’ll support him because he’s all we’ve got and he has a good patriotic story to tell”.
    I do think his record in the Senate is commendable and his “maverick” spirit impressive but I would have more respect for him if he stuck to his guns and didn’t cave to the right of the party in order to get the big money backing. And, I think this choice of Palin was caving to the right wing of the party but in a “maverick” way he could stomach. Still seems poor judgment to me and if there’s anything I’ve learned from the last 8 years, I want my president to have good, well thought out and considered, judgment. I don’t want that person to be a “regular guy (or girl)” who makes spur of the moment decisions without thinking very hard about it. I have yet to understand why we need to convince people that Obama is “just like you and me”. I don’t want him to be just like you or me because you or I wouldn’t make a good president (or at least I wouldn’t). There should be nothing regular about him or her. They should be smarter, calmer, better in many ways than the average guy. Average Joe makes a good neighbor, friend, maybe even school board member, but not president.
    Sorry for the rambling. Just thinking out loud.

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  41. Ian

    ChrisM wrote: “Palin was selected to bait the left into treating her in precisely this manner.”
    Exactly my point. Republicans are willing to gamble with the future of our country in order to turn the election into a fucking game. It’s reprehensible. God forbid they should just choose someone who is actually qualified, you know, just in case we get stuck with them running the country.

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  42. Zel M.

    Good gosh, where to start.
    OK, let’s cut to the chase. There is bullshit galore on both sides. I agree totally with GFWD in that this would all be viewed differently from the GOP side if the roles were reversed. Let’s say Obama was the VP nominee and his 17 year-old daughter was knocked up by Quandarius from the Washington Heights projects, who had on his MySpace page that his favorite activities were “chillin’ and shiznit” and “hot-boxin’ in my Impala with the 24s – and they spinnin!” (A little DFB&Ts shout-out there). I dare say the Repubs would not be so welcoming.
    That having been said, all of this discussion of Palin’s family and her maybe-maybe-not pregnancy and teenage romance and her husband’s 20 year-old DUI and all that crap is simply an attempt to smear any credibility she might have. To say that the Palin pick as VP was designed to get the left in a snit is giving the GOP far too much credit, but it does the following:
    1. makes a play for disaffected women
    2. removes the historical advantage (i.e. BO becoming first black prez is historic; fist woman VP is historic also)
    3. shores up the wingnut base (DO NOT underestimate this point)
    4. blunts any attack by Obama on experience.
    Notice how quickly comparing Obama to Palin in the experience area has come to light – and notice how quickly Dems have rushed to discount her experience. So what if Podunk, Alaska only had 9000 residents – she was holding elected office while Obama was a “neighborhood organizer” in Chicago, sitting in Jeremiah Wright’s church not listening to hate-filled sermons and making cozy real estate deals with people he didn’t know were sleazy slumlords. Are we telling people in 44 states that, sorry, you can’t hope to be on a national ticket unless the state you represent is of a sufficient size?
    So, since experience is out, the attacks become personal. She can’t be a good VP because her teenage daughter got knocked up – so much for GOP values. Anybody out there ever sneak out after curfew? Steal liquor from mom and dad’s cabinet? Hide a dime bag between the mattresses even though dad told you time and time again about the dangers of drugs? Not wanted to take the time to put on a condom even though the machine was downstairs in the basement? (at least that’s where it was in Winston dorm). Let ye among you who has a free hand cast the first stone. Are all of you who did something your parents warned you not to do, or did something your parents didn’t believe in, ready to sell out your folks as awful parents?
    And if I were a woman, I would be insulted at the suggestion that serving as VP would somehow take away from her ability to raise her children. This is the kind of glass ceiling bullshit that the left would never stand for if there were a “D” after Palin’s name. Hey, Katie Couric – you’re a single mom of two kids. Shouldn’t you give up your gig to be home with your kids? I mean, all the travel, all the crazy hours…isn’t is just too much?
    So call it like it is: repubs can try to spin this train wreck into a bastion of family values if they like. But the dems are full of crap and would go batshit if the tables were turned and the GOP attacked one of theirs like this.

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  43. Zel M.

    OK, since I’m obviously having trouble following the Palin saga, maybe some of you enlightened ones out there can help me out:
    Snowmobiling and moose-hunting = redneck
    Green indoor/outdoor carpet in the back of Clinton’s El Camino = perfectly acceptable
    Palin’s state, 47th in population, is too small for her gubernatorial experience to matter
    Howard Dean’s state, Vermont, 49th in population, is no problem
    Clinton gets a hummer in the Oval Office from an intern = it’s just sex, none of our business
    Palin’s DAUGHTER gets knocked up = Palin is a rotten parent and will be a rotten VP
    Clinton proudly works the system to avoid the draft = oh, come on, it’s Vietnam – everyone did it!
    Dubya joins the Air National Guard and Dan Rather destroys his career trying to rat GWB out
    HRC fires the entire White House travel office = power comes with the privilege
    Palin fires a bureaucrat = scandalous!
    Dems sell nights in the Lincoln bedroom like it’s Marriott = no problem!
    Palin steers some pork to Alaska = dirty rotten scoundrel!
    McCain employs lobbyists = corruption!
    Biden’s son IS a lobbyist who got a sweetheart deal = huh? Who? Where?
    Dan Quayle, with only 12 years in Washington, is too inexperienced to be VP in 1988
    Barack Obama, with only 1/3 the time in Washington as Quayle, is fully ready to be prez! (Tell me that doesn’t send a shiver down your spine – Obama has less than 1/3 of Quayle’s experience at the same point in time)

    Reply
  44. Matt

    What Zel said.
    Last point: Ever see the movie “The Contender,” where a woman running for VP is viciously smeared by misogynist Republicans? It is ridiculously over-the-top as far as liberal propoganda goes, but boy, it sure is a close approximation on how Sarah Palin is being treated. The only added twist is trashing a teenage girl for no other reason than her parents have politics you all disagree with. Even the movie writers couldn’t think that one up. Way to go xtcian.

    Reply
  45. GFWD

    Matt, you didn’t disappoint. You made my point exactly. That’s all I was getting at earlier.
    Neva, I drafted something earlier that sounded like your post about how the Prez shouldn’t be an Average Joe.
    For all of you still awake, like me, after watching Sarah Palin’s speech, I thought she knocked it out of the park pretty well. Her intentional refusal to name Obama, except for one time made me think of The West Wing, where Jed Bartlett refused to fail to acknowledge Senator Hoynes from Texas because he thought it would make him sound stupid.
    If Ian or anyone else wondered how you appeal to the Republican base, I hope you TiVo’d that speech. I thought she came across very well and is the best speaker I’ve seen from the Republican Party.

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  46. Neva

    Yep, she didn’t bother me, and I really thought she would.
    If she’s elected VP though I’m showing up at her door asking her to advocate for those special needs parents just like she said she would. Does advocate = better funding for educational needs? health care? what? Will you come babysit? what? Somehow I think advocate means something different in her mind than it does in mine. I want to see you walk the walk a little farther lady..

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  47. caroline

    Zel: the media went to TOWN on Bill for his blow job. Months of effing coverage of it. Didn’t the Republican’s try to impeach him for it? It’s all fair game these days, I’m afraid.

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  48. Sean M

    I agree w/GFWD…Palin gave an essentially flawless speech tonight, in terms of speaking to her base and rallying her troops. Won’t win her my vote, but it’s afforded her more respect than I may have previously given. She’s on her game.
    Alas, I’m still scared shitless.

    Reply

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