Rhymes With Fuchsia

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Further Palinontology

Note: I wrote this yesterday but decided to hold off on posting it until today; Chris and Christi have already validated my tag line. Fine with me: the more women see through this shallow and insulting trick, the better.

The one thing the Palin pick did for sure was to drive Obama's acceptance speech — which I didn't see, but which apparently moved a lot of old political hands to tears, and even got the nod from sourpuss "move to your left, a little more to your left, please" Glenn Greenwald — off the front page.

The general take seems to be that Palin appeals to the hard-right Base with her NRA membership, creationism, climate-change denial, and extreme pro-life stance, while simultaneously attracting disaffected Clinton voters by virtue of being a woman standing up to the old-boy network. The first part I'll certainly grant, even though I think McCain's maverick image is largely illusory, being based on a very few votes and bill sponsorships, several of which, as Biden very cogently noted, he now repudiates. It's worked very well for him so far, though, to the point where a lot of people, including some conservatives, think he's pro-choice at the same time that NARAL gives him a zero lifetime rating on his actual voting record. There seems to be no doubt that the pick raises McCain's conservative cred with the Limbaugh crowd.

The second part is what makes me queasy. Does McCain really think Clinton voters are so stupid that he can attract them by picking a female James Dobson with a featherweight resume? I almost never read NYT columnist Gail Collins, as she seems to me to be 1% substance and 99% snark, but her column yesterday was that one in a hundred. After noting that symbolic candidates Shirley Chisholm and Geraldine Ferraro felt like a big deal in the '70s after 50 years of our having the vote but little else, Collins closed with this:
This year, Hillary Clinton took things to a whole new level. She didn’t run for president as a symbol but as the best-prepared candidate in the Democratic pack. Whether you liked her or not, she convinced the nation that women could be qualified to both run the country and be commander in chief. That was an enormous breakthrough, and Palin’s nomination feels, in comparison, like a step back.

The key word there is qualified. I'd have voted for Clinton in either position on the ticket; I'd as soon vote for Palin as for, well, James Dobson. Or Paris Hilton. That would be as soon as you can show me definitive evidence that hell has frozen over.

I strongly suspect I'm not alone.


  • The best fun I've had reading in a long time is today's NYT op-ed piece by Maureen Dowd: Vice In Go-Go Boots. Read it here: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/31/opinion/31dowd.html?_r=2&hp&oref=slogin&oref=slogin

    Totally fun, totally perceptive.

    Yes, the Palin pick as a way to scoop up us disaffected Hillary hopers is absolutely insulting. I hope women scream protests far and wide.

    By Anonymous Chris, at 11:33 AM  

  • You're definitely not alone as I couldn't agree more. No surprise there. But I can't decide if I'm pleased that he's picked someone that won't help him win because of so many reasons or scared of what might happen if they actually do win.

    By Blogger Carole Knits, at 1:30 PM  

  • I'd vote for Paris Hilton before I'd vote for Palin.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:58 PM  

  • I've heard it said that she's the female version of Dan Quayle, but didn't Quayle even have more experience than she does?...

    As long as Biden can demolish her in the debates (which he can and will do!) without coming across like a bully, we'll be fine. Her record is so paltry, and what's on it is so flagrantly right-wing, I can't imagine it would seriously influence the swing vote.

    By Anonymous Beth S., at 4:24 PM  

  • I'm with you all the way! And I'm ready to kill my husband, because HE SEEMS TO BE FALLING FOR IT. I am livid. His biggest thing against Obama is "no experience," and he keeps harping on that. He was a strong Hillary supporter. HowEVER, he's just about enchanted (it seems) with the McCain/Palin ticket, and doesn't see the irony. How could he be SO STUPID??? Ugh. I'm looking for an exit strategy -- I'm not kidding!!!!

    I am actually worried that too many people WILL fall for it, though.....

    By Anonymous Norma, at 8:37 AM  

  • Amen, sister! Sing it out. But you might be preaching to the choir, here. How aabout a letter to the editor of the local paper?

    By Blogger Roxie, at 9:21 AM  

  • Phooey to the transparent pandering - I can only hope picking someone with no gravitas whatsoever backfires, hugely. I find it incredibly insulting. There actually are qualified Republican women he could have chosen (hello?? Kay Bailey Hutchinson? etc.??). It's even worse than the Dan Quayle pick. Grump, grump, grump...of course I never would have voted for the guy anyhow...

    By Blogger Liz, at 12:21 PM  

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