Sunday, November 22, 2009


I want to say right off the bat that I'm extremely averse to revisiting the insanity that is the Sarah Palin Crazy Train. Not just the woman herself but the flock that idolizes her.

Still, with her memoir's release this week and the subsequent book tour drawing the moths to the flame, we're once again subjected to stories like this, with a seventeen year old Palinista (Palinaut?) called out by a reporter on the issues she's espousing, and in true maverick fashion, the teen blames the so-called liberal media for playing "gotcha." It'd be comical if it wasn't so commonplace.

Call it the Palin Effect, if you like: Be proud to be ignorant. When the facts don't line up with your ideology, chuck the facts. Here's the always-illustrative Matt Taibbi, with whom I agree entrely in this regard (apologies in advance for the blue language):

Complaining about the assholes we interact with on a daily basis is the #1 eternal pastime of the human race. We all do it, and we get to do it every day, because the world is full of assholes. Me personally, I waste an enormous amount of time seething over people who get onto crowded subway cars with big backpacks on and/or talk in the Amtrak quiet car and/or drive 57 mph in the fast lane or, my personal favorite, walking with glacial slowness in a horizontal row four overweight tourists across on a New York City sidewalk. We all get into furious arguments at work that make us want to explode in self-righteous fury (in my office dramas I always realize I was actually the asshole a day or so later) and when we get home from work, this is usually what our loved ones hear about for at least the first hour or so.

Not health care, not financial regulatory reform, not Iraq or Afghanistan, but — assholes.

Sarah Palin is on an endless crusade against assholes. It’s all she thinks about. She doesn’t really have any political ideas, in the classic sense of the word — in fact the only thing resembling real political convictions in Going Rogue revolve around the Trans-Alaska pipeline and how awesome she thinks it is.

This is why I have such a problem with labeling Palin's appeal as being aimed towards conservatives. Conservatism may be a movement with which my disagreements are legion, but there's enough policy grounding there to at least begin a serious issue-based conversation. What Palin represents is something else entirely: Mediocrity writ large. That can't be something true conservatives are thrilled to have associated with them.

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