November 3rd, 2008

Wanna-be Republican Veep Sara Palin was widely derided for her response when Katie Couric tried to pin her down on which papers she read.  She replied, “All of ’em that were put in front of me.”  Most critics seem to think that was her way of trying to weasel out of not being able to think of a single newspaper in the whole wide world.

But what if we take her at her word?  Maybe it’s true.  Is it just me, or does this seem like an oddly passive way for a would-be leader of the world to get her information?  Assuming it’s true, do you think she gave them a list? Say The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Nome Caribou, and My Weekly Reader?  Or did “they,” whoever they might be, make the choice?  And, if so, what did they choose?

How do we know they didn’t give her the National Examiner and The World Globe?  Maybe her world view was formed by publications that are more usually read in supermarket checkout lines than at the breakfast table in a governor’s mansion.  Maybe she believes in the second coming of Bat Boy, or thinks that the Hubble Space Telescope, once it’s fixed, should be trained on Heaven.  Maybe she’ll try to name Nostradamus to the National Security Council.

For the last four years, the room next to the Oval Office has been occumpied by a malignant fungus.  This time, we should at least try to put some brains there.  I’m not exactly in a tizzy over Barack Obama, but I am over Sarah Palin.  The only Washington she should be allowed to get near is Washington State.


  1. Lisa Kenney Says:

    There are a whole lot of thoughts and emotions that bubble up when I ponder Sarah Palin, but I’m going to stick to my short list. Some things are based on fact and some are judgments based on watching her:

    I am shocked at the level of denial (at the expense of the good of the country) that the conservatives have reached. It was clear to any thinking person that the woman interviewed by Charlie Gibson and Katie Couric is embarrassingly out of her depth. I have not yet heard her say one substantial thing on any subject. When I see someone making an ass of herself, my first inclination is to pity her; but, the insane response she gave to Gibson when he asked if she had any hesitation about accepting McCain’s offer to run as VP gave her away as someone who has the irrational overconfidence and arrogance of a zealot and it completely threw any shred of respect I’d ever had for McCain into the toilet.

    Not much was made of it, but when she responded to a Colorado 3rd grader’s question as to what the VP does by saying the VP is in charge of the Senate and so can implement policy, I was dumbstruck. Ditto her recent remark about how criticism from the press threatens her first amendment rights — um…huh?

    But in the end, my first impression of her at the RNC as the kind of person who had to have been a high school bully has been confirmed over and over again by her constant ignorant sneering style and irresponsible race baiting on the campaign trail. All good racists and rednecks know that every reference to socialism and redistribution is a veiled message that Obama will take your money and give it to lazy, shiftless minorities. Anybody remember when Reagan coined the term, “Welfare Queen”?

    Oddly, the shitty tactics employed by the GOP have strengthened my respect for the Dems. Despite the fact that Palin attends a church that espouses Christian Nationalism (and a whole bunch of seriously batshit ideas), the Dems didn’t put it out there and they left the Alaska Secession stuff alone. They probably (rightly) assumed that those of us who care to do our homework will find it and those who’ve made up their minds already won’t care.

    I’m really disappointed that McCain led such an embarrassingly ineffective campaign and that his desire to get elected trumped any possibility that he might make an honest run at office with a plan to move the country forward.

    Joe Biden may stick his foot in his mouth a little too often, but at least he doesn’t scare the shit out of me.

  2. suzanna Says:

    I can make no claim for ever approaching any level of respect for John McCain, and after reading about his early academic, military, and personal history McCain scares me almost as much as Palin. He’s too reminiscent of another well-known over privileged underachiever who weaseled his way into places he never belonged in the first place. Palin’s a nightmare I hope never to endure for a single moment past November 4th, although her short time on the campaign trail did give Tina Fey enough material to offer some much needed comic relief for the last two months.

    Maybe I’m too simplistic in my assessment but I would rather have someone like Barack in the office of the President because of his outstanding achievements he’s garnered through hard work and humble beginnings. Harvard graduate, nominated president of the Harvard Law Review, worked as a civil rights attorney when he could have gone for a job at a big law firm, lands on the right side of most every issue, and has run one of the most disciplined campaigns I have ever witnessed, and with few exceptions left the gutter politics to his opponent. In stark contrast McCain made his way through the doors of the Naval Academy on his father’s and grandfather’s coattails, graduated near last in his class of well over eight hundred students, should have been expelled but was saved once again by members of his family, just to name a few of the tamer details of his dodgy past. McCain has largely supported George Bush and Dick Cheney throughout one of the darkest chapters in American history for which they were primarily responsible for creating. McCain has run a despicable campaign where it is clear that there is very little for him to offer our nation as president since all he seems to be capable of doing is attacking Barack Obama with a multitude of falsehoods, He has said very little about how he would get us out of the mess he helped create. For Americans as a whole and for anyone else who lives outside of our borders who lost faith in our fundamental principles of freedom and social justice during the Bush Cheney years, I firmly believe Barack Obama is the best man to begin the healing process from the eight year bashing we’ve endured. I truly hope that he can help bring about the change that he says he thinks we can achieve. It took eight years and a lot of stupidity to get us into the mess we’re in so it’ll probably take a good deal of time more and a lot of smart thinking to get us out. And for me one of the things I look forward to the most is when Bush is finally long gone and Barack Obama is our president, as I truly wish he becomes, I will gladly listen to what he has to say instead of reflexively shrink, as I have for eight years, from the absolute horror that our country has a nincompoop for a president.

  3. suzanna Says:

    P.S. Sorry for the long rants. Posting replies on your blog for the last couple of days has been a great diversion from the election news and very therapeutic to boot.

  4. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Lisa and Suzanna —

    Well, here we are — The Day. All the shouting and rhetoric and slurs and half-truths (and inspirations) will come down to the next 8-9 hours.

    I obviously share your hope that Obama wins, and I’m also impressed with the way he kept the level of his campaign high, shying away from character attacks or even reciprocal sniping when the McCain campaign started it. But I think he went too easy on Palin. Last night on CNN, Paul Begala, who’s a Democratic strategist, said that it wasn’t necessary for the Obama campaign to attack Palin because, for their purposes, McCain’s running mate was George W. Bush. Great line, and a very perceptive one.

    While I’m worried about the closeness of the lead in many states and also about the large number of “undecided” voters, I think we should remember that the polls we see only list numbers for the Democrats and the Republicans, and not for the third- and fourth-party nominees. So when we see a 5% undecided margin that could swing the election in, say, Ohio, it’s worth remembering that 2-3% of those people will be voting for Ron Paul or Nader (or Dr. Seuss, for all I know) and the real pool of undecided voters to be split between McCain and Obama is probably closer to 4%.

    This is the kind of thing I’m taking comfort in now. God, I’ll be glad when this is over.

  5. suzanna Says:

    Yup yup it’s almost over!

    Going soft on Palin, and for that matter going soft on McCain during the debates was frustrating for a lot of people who wanted Obama to bust their chops but I have to say that is one thing I was so grateful for. To me it was a shrewd choice for Obama to stay focused on what people want to know, How the heck are we gonna fix the mound of problems we face? He avoided the slime tactics so typical of political races and practiced what McCain said he wanted to do during this election and didn’t, and unfortunately I think McCain lost faith that good ideas were enough to stop the Obama phenomena. He was probably right but he didn’t make enough of an effort to distinguish himself from who he said he wasn’t — George Bush and I really think that hurt him. It’s a strategy that I think he will live to regret if he doesn’t win and maybe even if he does.

    Tim, a big HUGE thank you for opening up your blog to this political discussion. After all even if my guy doesn’t pull it off it’s been a great comfort to know that there is a place that is safe and well supported where I can voice my opinions and feelings about what’s about to happen, and hopefully share in the good news that the nincompoop was replaced not with two more nincompoops, or one more nincompoop, if you like, but by a leader I can feel good about. I would love to know what that feels like again.

  6. Sharai Says:

    At 6:45 pm California time, can I get an AMEN! I haven’t been able to allow myself any real hope, it’s been quashed so many times before, but I can’t hold back any longer. I AM HOPEFUL!!!!

    The age of ‘White Man Rule’ is coming to an end, and we have Sarah Palin to thank.
    Such sweet irony.

  7. Lisa Kenney Says:

    It happened!!! And I confess, Scott and I are well into the second bottle of champagne and don’t tell him I told you, but we both cried when we realized what just happened. All I know of JFK and RFK comes from newsreel footage, but this man, our now President-elect, makes me feel proud that I’m American for the very first time. Already, I feel like the way the world thinks of us is changing. I’ve NEVER been so happy at the result of an election. Today, right now, I am. Wow.

  8. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Lisa, Sharai (and Suzanna, whose response I accidentally deleted along with more than 90 spam messages) — we were also in tears last night. An absolutely incredible evening, one I’ll remember my entire life.

    I’ll write something about it when I have some perspective. Right now, I feel like I’ve been sniffing glue.

  9. Sarah Palin On Best Political Blogs » Blog Archive » ALL OF ‘EM THAT WERE PUT IN FRONT OF ME Says:

    […] ALL OF ‘EM THAT WERE PUT IN FRONT OF ME Wanna-be Republican Veep Sara Palin was widely derided for her response when Katie Couric tried to pin her down on which papers she read. She replied, “All of ‘em that were put in front of me.” Most critics seem to think that was her … […]

  10. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    How about this? Unless the response above is a really slick piece of spam, this Palin blog just got chosen to be featured on a UK “Best Political Blogs” site. (It actually is up on the site.)

    But for all I know, it’s a sophisticated way to harvest e-mail addresses and everyone who looks at it will be offered rock-bottom prices on Viagra or a free trial membership to the nude Patrick Buchanan site.

  11. suzanna Says:

    Pretty funny. Maybe we’ll all get a free Caribou Barbie out of the deal if we click on the site.

  12. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    Suzie — I thought we’d sent Caribou Barbie back to the store.

    By the way, anyone who thinks that Palin isn’t going to spend the next four years being politically home-schooled and come back to haunt us in four years isn’t being realistic. Who have the Republicans got? Palin, despite the personal loathing I felt for her, is an attractive candidate, and she’ll be truly formidable when and if she actually knows something, anything, about how the world works.

    She’ll be baaaaaaaaaaaack.

  13. suzanna Says:

    True, the real life Caribou Barbie should definitely go back where she belongs and I for one hope she stays there! But I think you’re right and so is Tina Fey she’s angling for 2012..

    If the Dems pull off the recovery effort of the millennium they may have a pretty good chance of staying in office but that “if” should be about an 18 point font for emphasis. There’s a lot of work to do.

    She’s gettin’ schooled all right but I’m not sure that eight years is long enough to prime that pretty little beehived head of hers. Anyone who can spend that much time shopping, getting made up and havin her hair done on top of fishing and riding a snowmobile and hunting, and last but not least being the Governor of Alaska, just seems way too busy to get ready for 2012. She could always try Reality TV as a fallback plan.

    Oh well, we’ve got the next eight years or so to ponder the possibilities. Let’s just be happy our man got the job.

  14. Timothy Hallinan Says:

    JOHN LINDQUIST wrote the following, which I accidentally deleted in a frenzy of trashing spam:

    Hey Tim,

    I was thinking that Sara Palin might be considered the Yoko Ono of the Republican Party – but that would be such an insult to Yoko.

    Anyway, the country won in this election.

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