Well, John McCain’s VP pick is certainly pretty.
Alaska’s Gov. Sarah Palin is an outsider alright. Liberals, to whom beauty is a liability (unless it’s Michelle Obama’s kind of Amazon-Woman appeal), are already making light of her beauty-queen pedigree. Check this condescending Newsweek article title: “Pageants and Politics.” Isn’t this an attempt to diminish the woman?
Palin is a hunter and a strong supporter of the Second Amendment. Unlike her boss, she favors drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. But, and as Obama intends to do, she already has raised taxes on oil company profits.
She’s from Idaho, which, I am told, is where extremely conservative Real America escapes the depredations of the creeping left.
A nickname that has stuck with Palin is “Sarah Barracuda”—all good—and she worked as a commercial fisherman. Her husband, a handsome, some-time commercial fisherman (one of the most dangerous jobs), is a Yup’ik Eskimo. I say that the Moron McCain has hit a home run. This family is a nice counterweight to the Obama family exotica.
On the issue of experience, McCain has knocked the stuffing out of Obama in as much as the latter has made all the winning arguments for judgment and wisdom over experience.
From the gushing Republicans are doing over Palin, however, it is clear that it doesn’t take much to please these party loyalists. Republicans are nowhere near a eureka moment—recognizing that without Ron-Paul type fiscal leadership, the US is going down the economic toilet, with a national debt half as large as the GDP.
For that, a pretty face and a feel for fetuses are not enough. Salvaging the country is something only a Paul, perhaps a Bob Barr, could do, with a willing Congress. And here the reader is encouraged to fill in all the clichés of improbability he can conjure. For example: And Britney Spears will grow a voice. Or wear underwear.
Update I (September 1, 2008): Sarah Palin’s unmarried daughter, aged 17, is expecting a baby. I disagree with all the Republicans and “conservatives” who’ve suddenly detected in this event another sign of Palin’s conservative bona fides. Palin’s press release reveals the woman’s liberal parenting style with respect to an issue her conservative cohorts are helping to normalize:
“Our beautiful daughter Bristol came to us with news that as parents we knew would make her grow up faster than we had ever planned. We’re proud of Bristol’s decision to have her baby and even prouder to become grandparents. As Bristol faces the responsibilities of adulthood, she knows that she has our unconditional love and support.”
Spoken like a true liberal, who supports and, no doubt, will subsidize irresponsible—some conservatives would say immoral—conduct.
Update II: cultural conservatism has become an unknown quantity in fin de siècle America, in which a conservative candidate for office publishes a letter practically celebrating her unwed daughter’s pregnancy. There is not a hint of disapproval in the Palin press release. A reader has asked what I think Palin ought to have said about the affair. Apparently that’s a mystery. So here’s the conservative version of Palin’s press release:
“As conservatives can imagine, my husband and I are deeply disappointed in our beautiful daughter, Bristol. Her actions flout the upbringing and the values we thought we had instilled in her. Our daughter is well aware of our disappointment. In addition to the enormous responsibilities she will be forced to shoulder due to her reckless behavior, she has her parents’ disapproval to deal with. As this is a private and very difficult matter for our family, we ask that the media respect our privacy and keep its distance.”
Update III: From ABC News: “A meme is developing out there among liberals that Gov. Sarah Palin was a supporter of Pat Buchanan in the 1990s, a charge that the McCain-Palin campaign strongly denies.”
Why deny? So a pregnant daughter is not a liability, but supporting Pat Buchanan is?
Update IV (September 2): The responses so far to my comment about Gov. Palin’s perfectly liberal parenting style is to point out that getting knocked up and having bastards is simply the way of the world.
I see moral and cultural relativism is another twisted tenet conservatives have adopted. For that is what this mounts to: because everyone does it, certain conduct becomes part of the cultural repertoire. Judgment is suspended. Understanding extended, and the undesirable behavior then multiplies.
Furthermore, my comment pertained not to what the girl intends to do—or will be compelled to do—but to the lack of any opprobrium in Palin’s gushing press release. As I say, her daughter’s conduct is depicted rather positively, even praised.
Actually, when my girl was a little younger than Bristol, I had The Talk with her. Let me put it this way, the options I presented her with should she conceive were not as appealing as the Palin plan for unwed mothers. Nowhere did “pride and support” feature in our little conversation. It broke my heart to be so harsh, but it worked, to the benefit of my daughter’s wellbeing. Young girls are not ready physically or mentally to have babies. Babies born to young girls, moreover, are not as healthy. In fact, complications and abnormalities abound in the young cohort as they do in the older age group.
Question: Palin’s kid is five months into her pregnancy. Why on earth did she not get married earlier?
Naturally, this is an interesting conversation in itself. Note: nowhere have I intimated that this matter should–or does–have any bearing on Gov. Palin’s abilities.
Update V: Lew Rockwell on what’s in the offing for this feisty woman:
It is perhaps possible to be the governor of a small state such as Alaska and not be part of the machine. It is not possible to be vice president of the United States and not enter into the deeply immoral arena that values the burying of all principle, and saying and doing whatever is necessary to bolster power.
Part of the purpose of campaigns is to socialize the candidates in this mold. Sarah will be slapped around if and when she openly disagrees with McCain’s politics. When they win the election, she will immediately be required to take on the role of an apologist for all that the administration does.