Monday, October 06, 2008

My thoughts on Palin

Fig asks what I thought of the VP debate. I didn't want to bury my thoughts in the comments on a non-top-post, so I'm putting them here. Both she and David seem to have been traumatized by the debate.

Personally, it was about what I expected. I think by now it's pretty clear that Palin follows in Bush's intellectual footsteps: poorly informed, incurious, and ideological rigid. After the famous Couric interview Palin's main objective for this debate must have been not to embarrass her.

On the other hand, her comment that "I may not answer the questions that either the moderator or you want to hear, but I'm going to talk straight to the American people and let them know my track record also" pretty much shows that she had nothing but contempt for the debate process. The debate wasn't so she could let the American people know about her track record, that's what the Internet is for. And newspapers. Which she should know, since she reads them all.

Palin's job in this interview was to not do anything embarrassing and repeat the campaign's talking points, which she did ad infinitum. Notice that whenever she was talking she never gave any specifics, just aw shucks, gee whiz, gosh darn, say-it-aint-so-joe soundbites intended to appeal to the so called "low information" voters, and I think that succeeded.

Fortunately, it looks like recent polling data shows she has turned off the voters that look for a bit more in their candidates than whether or not they would be a good person to have a beer with.

UPDATE: This piece by Radley Balko basically sums up what really bothers me about Republicans:

This growing anti-intellectualism on the right is alarming. It isn’t that Palin is dumb. I don’t think she is. It’s that she has no interest in learning, no interest in reading or experiencing anything that might challenge what she already knows she believes. She thinks with her gut, as Steven Colbert might put it. She’s a female W. And they seem to love her for it. The GOP has gone populist. Knowledge, worldliness, and learning are to be shunned, swept aside as East Coast elitism. It’s all about insularity, earthy values, and simpleness. Remember the beating John Kerry took in 2004 for daring to use the word “nuance?” There’s no room for complexity on the right anymore. It’s good and evil. Black and white. Us and them.

7 comments:

LaPopessa said...

Forget contempt for the debate process, it shows me her contempt for the public she claimed to want to speak directly to.

David said...

just aw shucks, gee whiz, gosh darn, say-it-aint-so-joe soundbites intended to appeal to the so called "low information" voters, and I think that succeeded.

I don't think it did, actually. Her negative ratings have doubled in the last couple of weeks, with every indication the downward spiral will continue. This election isn't about the diehards of either party - it's about the middle-roaders. And they seem pretty disgusted by her.

Fig said...

I dunno. Where I work there are very few democrats (almost all of them are more right leaning than me...but then there are some socialists who are more right leaning than me so that's not a great yard stick) and several of them have said how great she is, how energetic, what a big step for women, how great to have a washington outsider, etc. etc. Some of these democrats are thinking seriously about voting for McCain based on Palin's presence on the ticket.

I love my insular way far left leaning ivory tower existence but when I work in the ED an hour away I'm reminded that there are a lot of people who don't think she is showing contempt by refusing to answer the questions but instead think she is being a maverick and sticking it to the man. :P

I, sadly, think this race is still wide open and that there is a deep river of racism that runs through the heart of the country that may keep Obama from being elected.

moon-grrl said...

This Josephine BoxWine agrees with David.

My parents' shit sheet has a daily feature called "Speakout" where anyone with an opinion can dial a number, spout off, and, with little editing, the K3 Urinal puts it in print. Reading through them right after the VP debate, I noted that the number of people unimpressed with Palin jumped exponentially. Like, every other blurb being how she's an idiot. I do think part of the change is the Kank having the second highest unemployment rate in IL. Still, I hold that if she'd made a hugely favorable impression, the calls would have flooded Speakout to sing her praises. They sure did when McCain originally picked her!

There's my 2 glasses of Franzia.

David said...

Well, I will venture that if these candidates and their running mates were duking it out in 2004 instead of 2008, things would be playing out much differently.

I'll never say I'm glad the economy is tanking and all my retirement money is vanishing... but if that's what it takes to keep a neo-con idiot like Palin out of the White House...

Matthew said...

"I'll never say I'm glad the economy is tanking and all my retirement money is vanishing... but if that's what it takes to keep a neo-con idiot like Palin out of the White House..."

Amen to that, Brother David.

And you're spot on with your thoughts and analysis, Narc. Great post!

Anonymous said...

So it's not just the US that has the crazies, whew!

Blame Canada!