We have 1 year, 11 months, and 15 days until the 2012 election and already this crap is getting to me, especially where La Palin is concerned. You can't get away from her, no matter how hard you try. There's Palin's teevee show (which I haven't watched, thank you). Her daughter Bristol dancing with stars or something like it. Barbara Bush making headlines with an innocuous one-liner about Palin "staying there." Conservative columnist Jedediah Bila doin' that "Jane, You Ignorant Slut!" thing to the equally conservative Mona Charen's piece about why Palin shouldn't run. And the moonbats! ... the latest of which is the supremely insufferable Frank Rich's column in yesterday's NYT. I hate to deal in clichés but it's true: All Palin, All the Time. I don't see how I'm gonna be able to take another 1,029,600 minutes of this.
I did read a good piece on the subject of Palin In 2012!, though. David Boaz, writing at the libertarian Cato@Liberty blog, did a brief but excellent piece on the subject. His main premise is this:
Liberals, on the other hand, are jumping up and down at the prospect of a Palin candidacy. She could win! they urgently insist to skeptical Republicans; you should get behind her. Don’t throw us Democrats in that Palin briar patch! The latest example is the star columnist of the New York Times, Frank Rich. His Sunday column is titled “Could She Reach the Top in 2012? You Betcha.” Palin’s got a huge television presence, Rich says — 5 million viewers for her new TLC series. Which is slightly less than the 65 million it would take to win a presidential election.
Boaz has a good point but I'm thinkin' he's missing the forest for the trees. Yeah, the Lefties would love to see Palin run. Like Mr. Boaz, I think the Lefties are praying for a Palin In 2012! candidacy. But it ain't just Lefties. Palin has a large number of followers and that camp is gettin' larger by the day. Palin is anything BUT dumb and she's milking the populist anger at "professional pols" for all it's worth. As Ms. Charen said: "She'd so much rather be out dog sledding than in some 'dull political office,' she tells the audience. File that." Yup... there's a quote that will come back to haunt should Palin In 2012! become reality.
It seems like the only folks that don't like La Palin are the establishment Republicans, for better or worse. But there's one thing about the establishment... they know how to win elections. One could counter that Palin knows a lil sumthin' about the subject, too... just look how well the candidates she endorsed in the mid-terms did. Well, sorta. Except for that Delaware witch, the nutcase in Nevada, and the Alaskan Tea Partier. They didn't do so well. And there are more. The endorsement thing was a mixed bag, at best. But Palin does energize the base... that's what she's best at doing.
So. This is gettin' long and I should stop. Don't get the wrong idea: I'm not a Palin-hater. I've written my share of paeans to the woman, the first of which is here. If you peruse my September 2008 archives you'll see a LOT of that sort of stuff. Do I like her? Yes. Do I want her to run for president? Not only no but Hell, No! Just continue doing what you're doing, Mrs. Palin... give your speeches, do the Fox News thing, write your books, smile for the camera, and stump for conservatives... coz you're good at that.
One more thing from Mr. Boaz and then we'll really go. It has to do with the Reagan/Palin comparisons some folks are making, including La Palin herownself.
Peggy Noonan spoke for a lot of Reaganites when she responded to Palin’s suggestion that being a Fox-TLC celebrity was a reasonable platform for seeking the presidency, since after all “Ronald Reagan was an actor”:Yeah, what they said. Read Mr. Boaz's piece.
Excuse me, but this was ignorant even for Mrs. Palin. Reagan people quietly flipped their lids, but I’ll voice their consternation to make a larger point. Ronald Reagan was an artist who willed himself into leadership as president of a major American labor union (Screen Actors Guild, seven terms, 1947-59.) He led that union successfully through major upheavals (the Hollywood communist wars, labor-management struggles); discovered and honed his ability to speak persuasively by talking to workers on the line at General Electric for eight years; was elected to and completed two full terms as governor of California; challenged and almost unseated an incumbent president of his own party; and went on to popularize modern conservative political philosophy without the help of a conservative infrastructure. Then he was elected president.I made a similar point back in February when David Broder was pushing Palin’s prospects. And two months before that I noted that the Washington Post had run two op-eds “by” Sarah Palin in the space of five months, so that one ”might almost think the Post wanted Palin to be seen as a leader of Republicans.” In the coming months, watch for it: Democrats, liberal journalists, and red-state bloggers will talk up Palin’s chances. Republicans and conservatives who want to defeat President Obama in 2012 will try to change the subject.
The point is not “He was a great man and you are a nincompoop,” though that is true. The point is that Reagan’s career is a guide, not only for the tea party but for all in politics. He brought his fully mature, fully seasoned self into politics with him.