Thursday, 3 September 2009

That evil, nasty, horrible Sarah Palin! (yawn)

I am a huge fan of Sarah Palin, and thought that she was the only bright light the McCain ticket had. She was eventually punished by a well-strung media campaign both pro-Obama and anti-Palin and her slight lack of experience, which wouldn't have been an issue had she not been under such an intense spotlight. Consider for a second the intensity of the coverage on Joe Biden, the Democrat Vice-Presidential candidate (and now of course the VP), and see how little intensity he was examined with compared to Palin. This of course wasn't really media bias (the hysterical cries of her being dumb and crazy came later), but simply the media covering what was interesting. McCain and Biden were not particularly interesting, while Palin and Obama were. So it quickly turned into Palin v Obama, and it was not a fight that Palin was ready for, especially considering the momentum Obama had, both with the independents and with the media.

The venom that was aimed at Palin has continued since Obama won the election, and has proved to be an interesting phenomenon. It has shown that, despite the constant criticism that she is useless, stupid, a bimbo, a failure, inexperienced etc etc etc, she is actually a grave threat to the Obama administration, and she will definitely be a factor in one way or another at the 2012 election. The criticism itself supports this. After all, why would you continue to go after, and try to silence, someone who is not a threat? If there were someone who matched this description on the Democrat side, conservatives would not attack and hate such a person, but would instead delight in the open goal he or she would give to the conservative movement. For instance, I have a soft spot for Joe Biden, who stumbles about saying things such as "Oh yeh, we guessed wrong on the economy." Brilliant!! Have a beer on me Mr Vice-President! As Palin looks more and more likely to run for 2012, surely liberals would be delighted if it was really the case that she was terrible? Liberals might be wrong, but they aren't stupid. They loved McCain and left him alone, because they knew he wasn't a real threat, and if Palin wasn't a threat, they would leave her alone as well.

But Palin is a threat, a huge one. This was shown recently in the healthcare debate. One innocuous, yet well-researched, post on facebook on what she labelled 'death panels' triggered DEFCOM 1 at the White House, hasty but unconvincing denials from Obama, and an increase in awareness amongst the public as to what was in the Bill. Out of the many, many town hall meetings on this subject, I doubt that there has been one where Palin's phrase 'death-panels' has not been mentioned, and it will remain in public consciousness for a long time. Eventually, the section was removed from the Bill, which caused even more problems as it came on the heels of almost every single Democrat screaming at the top of their lungs that such a section did not actually exist. At time of writing, the administration has not recovered from this blow, and it may have killed the healthcare bill in its current form, and if passed at all, will come with huge compromises, and a significant chip off Obama's approval ratings. All this with a facebook 'note.' As James Taranto asks in his excellent WSJ article on the subject, "If she's dim and Obama is brilliant, how did he lose the argument to her?"

The media has realised this, and like clockwork, a bizarre, barrel-scraping interview with Levi Johnston (the father of Bristol Palin's child) has appeared in Vanity Fair, slagging her off as a bad parent. Yet the 'previews' VF give us aren't exactly groundbreaking or interesting and makes one wonder why VF spent such a huge amount of time and coverage on what really is a non-news story, amounting to nothing but the irresponsible bitching of a whiny teenager about his child's grandmother. Lets take a look at some of these excellent 'exclusives' that Johnston gives to Vanity Fair shall we??

My emphasis in bold and comments in red.

"There wasn’t much parenting in that house. Sarah doesn’t cook, Todd doesn’t cook—the kids would do it all themselves: cook, clean, do the laundry, and get ready for school. [Actually, this sounds like excellent parenting. If such a thing is true (they did EVERYTHING themselves?) then it proves not that the Palin's are lazy, but that they have brought their children up to be extremely independent. Levi is saying that the children, all under 18, are able to cook, clean, do their own laundry, and follow timetables. Not bad skills for young people to learn!]

Most of the time Bristol would help her youngest sister with her homework,[Surely this is a good thing, and shows a strong relationship between the siblings.]and I’d barbecue chicken or steak on the grill...[Oh my God Levi, you actually had to cook for the mother of your child!?! Such horrors! Siblings assisting each other with homework? Adult members of the family cooking for one another? Quick, someone call child services!]

Sarah told me she had a great idea: we would keep it a secret—nobody would know that Bristol was pregnant.[Considering Palin was lambasted by the liberal media for supposedly using her daughter as a political tool (and hence that's why it was 'ok' for comedians like Letterman to make jokes about Bristol, but not about Obama's kids), this seems a little rich. Also, wanting to shield your daughter and future grandchild away from the media spotlight sounds like responsible parenting to me!].....I think Sarah wanted to make Bristol look good, and she didn’t want people to know that her 17-year-old daughter was going to have a kid.[Yeah, why would she be wary of letting the media know that her daughter was having a kid? Looking at it a year on in light of the Letterman rape jokes, as well as the countless cheap gags made at Bristol's expense in the media, Palin's instinct to shield her daughter from that sounds bang on!]

Sarah was sad for a while[after the election].[A VP candidate was a bit down after losing an way! Remember, this is the preview from Vanity Fair I'm using. I wonder if ALL the article will be this thrilling!] She walked around the house pouting. [SUCH insight! Next week in Vanity Fair "Obama smiled after he won the election"] I had assumed she was going to go back to her job as governor,[which she did...] but a week or two after she got back she started talking about how nice it would be to quit and write a book or do a show and make “triple the money.” It was, to her, “not as hard.”[I don't think I know anyone who in a time of stress at work hasn't gone 'Wow, I should just quit and do x.' Again, how is this news? Palin continued getting beaten about by false lawsuits as governor, surely one would expect her to go 'Is this worth it? Should I do something else for less stress and more money] She would blatantly say, “I want to just take this money and quit being governor.” She started to say it frequently, but she didn’t know how to do it. When she came home from work, it seemed like she was more and more stressed out. [So, the woman who has gone from a little known governor, to an international celebrity, and pretty much the only serious candidate for leadership that the Republicans have, became 'more and more stressed out?' How dare she!]

How this counts as a serious scoop is beyond me. The news here isn't what Vanity Fair have found, which shows pretty much what you would expect in a family facing intense media speculation and an unexpected pregnancy, but why they have chosen to make a big deal of it. Again, it goes back to the left's determination to throw as much crap at Palin as they can, in the hope that some of it will stick. However, while it worked to an extent in the election, I think as more and more people hear Palin speak and read what she writes, and see this increasingly desperate smear campaign by the left for what it is, then Palin's standing will only increase. It has been show than she is a threat to the Obama adminstration now, imagine what she could become by 2012!

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