Palin Derangement And Reality
by Larry Perrault on February 12, 2010 at 9:52 AM
With all that she has accomplished, why do people on the left and some on the right, say that Sarah Palin is dumb or more kindly, unequipped for the presidency? The first thing that strikes me when I see the question of Palin and the presidency raised is one that is always fascinating when watching journalists and pundits. For so many of these, the question drives them like it is their personal version of porn. And, they are unable to accept that anyone who has served in or seeks public office might tell them the truth: it’s possible that someone might say they are non-committal…BECAUSE THEY ARE NON-COMMITTAL! But, no…whatever they say, the question for consideration is, “What did they mean by that?” or “What is their strategy?” How should they translate the plain English? They are the “experts.” Thank you, no.
But the reason the left calls Palin dumb is simple: ideology, ideology, and ideology. They hate what she believes and she’s dumb because she doesn’t believe what they do. As we have seen here, not only is she dumb, but so is anyone who likes her. Oh, the unbearable humiliation! Barrack Obama does things that they would sneer at her for. No matter. He’s right. He’s an intellectual. By the way, I’m less impressed with Obama than most Harvard nuts. Oh, and Palin’s a conservative woman to boot. If liberals believed in spirits, they might think she must be demon possessed.
For those harmonizers on the right, it’s a little more complicated. First, they reach for their behinds at the charges of the left. And secondly, there’s a bit of Washington establishment academic chauvinism going on. The Ivy League is preferred. An East Coast University, University of Chicago or Stanford at least. “No offense intended, but we do have standards.” David Brooks of The New York Times, who went to The University of Chicago has been the worst: “She's a joke.” I used to think Brooks was a little bit provincial. Now, I think he's a joke. Princeton’s George Will, Harvard’s Charles Krauthammer, and Yale’s Michael Medved, all of whom I like, have been more gracious in their dismissal. New Yorker Jon Stewart said he didn’t like that “real America” stuff from people between the coasts. That’s fine. I understand that from his perspective. I also understand the Ivy League parochialism. But, I also understand that neither of these pigeon holes represents a majority of American voters, who are out here actually doing and making things besides articles. I don’t need writers and talkers to advise me on a heart surgeon or a chief executive.
To those provincials, my response is that they read and write in the same language and read the same books in universities all over the place. I’ve read and heard a lot of these Ivy League products and icons. Generally, I’m not particularly impressed. And the fact is that some of the nuttiest and most socially destructive ideas were birthed in the world’s most prestigious academic hotbeds, never mind that these ideas are all over the map. It has always been fascinating to me that scholars span the ideological spectrum including directly contradicting each other, but they are all learned and respected if they have the right institutional imprimatur. It’s kind of like how journalists (and Obama too, obviously) thought Joe Biden had great foreign policy experience and wisdom because he served long on and chaired The Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Forget that over the years, he was on the wrong side on most of the positions and votes he took on foreign policy in The Senate.
But, more important than these questions are Palin’s record of accomplishments in government and as an executive; the sort of which Barrack Obama had none of until he racked up the largest debt in the history of the world in one year as US president. Well, she would never match that. But, what she did in a short amount of time in ordering The Republican Party, the state government, and the disposition and conditions of energy contracts and projects in Alaska, not only could Obama not have done but I submit that neither could have any of the 2008 presidential candidates on either side. An executive position requires a keen and tenacious executive achiever, not a penny-loafered, back-packed Ivy League pinhead.
Fine, call us dumb. Now, please step aside and take a seat. But the most important thing about Sarah Palin is not just her common-sense purpose and assertiveness. It’s the fact that she can jazz and inspire confidence from a population just by showing up. And, I’ve seen her gain the trust of people across the ideological and social spectrum. I’ve always thought I had great ideas about how I’d like to see the country function. But, I could put a class of ADD boys to sleep inside 15 minutes. Those attributes of assertiveness and allure are a rare package in the history of American politics. If Republicans don’t plan and devise to bottle and sell that, they will once again demonstrate their capacity as “The Stupid Party.”