Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Holy Mackerel Barracuda! Palin's Incoherent Resignation Speech
And How To See Into The Unreality-Based Community

Wow. I hadn't actually seen the speech until just now. Palin is, of course, naturally incoherent, and I'd heard that this speech was particularly incoherent, but I was still a bit surprised. She goes out of hre way to assert that she's given reasons for her resignation, but none of them make any real sense, and most are patent BS.

As painful as it is to watch--or, for that matter, even think about--Sarah Palin, I actually think she provides us with an interesting opportunity to learn something about a particularly feverish bit of the fever swamps, a sector that doesn't just vote for her but apparently loves and admires her.

It's hard to believe that anyone could really think that she is qualified to be president. Or that she is close to being qualified. Or that she is close to being close to being qualified. For that matter, it's hard to believe that anyone could think that Sarah Palin will ever be qualified to be president. Or vice-president. Or governor... She just doesn't have it in her, and that's not a particularly obscure or well-concealed fact. (On the other hand, I'm not sure she's clearly any less intelligent than Bush...so there's that sobering fact to deal with...)

But I think it's important to ask how it is that so many people do think she's qualified, or at least that she's somewhere vaguely in the vicinity of being qualified. What is it about this person--this not very bright, not very knowledgeable, not very nice, not very honest person--that resonates with a surprisingly large chunk of the population? How is it that this revolting political figure seems attractive--and, apparently extremely so--to so many?

(This is the flip side of the Obama puzzle--how it is that someone who is so clearly admirable can evoke not merely indifference but frothing, sputtering, seething hatred from so many?)

One of my more astute friends has suggested that Palin is successful because she represents and is supported by "the stupid faction." She's clueless and proud of it, and that resonates with the large population of proudly clueless people that our country--like every country--is saddled with. All I can really say about that is that I can't rule out the hypothesis...

The standard explanation seems to be that Palinites like Palin because she's a regular Joe. But if that really mean sthat she seems like a regular Joe to her supporters, and that just means that she reminds them of them, then we're still left with the puzzle--what, exactly, is it of themselves that her supporters think they see in her? That is, we still don't know which of her characteristics are attracting her followers.

One might say it's her lack of airs...but that doesn't seem right either--there's a lot of space between putting on airs and being a dunderhead. So an aversion to snobs--something I share, incidentally--can't explain the phenomenon. Aversion to snobbery doesn't entail affinity for idiocy.

So I dunno the answer. Not that I've thought about it very hard, admittedly...

But I remain convinced that there's something to be learned in this vicinity.


Blogger Joshua said...

"... what, exactly, is it of themselves that her supporters think they see in her?"

My guess?

"... not very bright, not very knowledgeable, not very nice, not very honest ..."

That's partly me being snarky, but there's at least a grain of truth in it as well. Just look at your average Palin supporter. They're drooling morons fueled by nothing but hate. They can't coherently explain what they had for breakfast, never mind why ACORN is the root of all evil, but their inability to rub two neurons together is matched only by their seething hatred of everything different from them.

Just like Sarah Palin!

12:39 PM  
Anonymous Lewis Carroll said...


To me the most interesting premise in the support for Palin is not the first step in the reasoning: that she's not of the *elite* and therefore just a regular guy or gal, more like us etc.

The more interesting thing to me is the next step: that somehow based on this ordinariness, she is qualified to be president!

Maybe I just think differently, but even given that based on tests, second-party feedback etc., I'm above average in intellect and abilities, I still feel NOWHERE NEAR REMOTELY QUALIFIED TO BE PRESIDENT. In other words, the last person I want for president is merely someone who's 'just like me'.

I just don't understand how being a person with a good intellect who's shown a predisposition for thinking deeply and in nuanced ways about big things is seen as a DIS-qualification for elected office.

Maybe someone can help me out with this?

3:20 PM  
Blogger Winston Smith said...

No dude I'm right there with you. If I imagine myself somehow magically plunged into the presidency, my blood runs cold. There is little doubt that I'm not up to the task, and not close to being up to it. And I'm not the dullest tool in the shed by a damn sight.

Palin has basically no chance of performing even up to my level in the job. Needless to say, a Palin presidency is a genuinely terrifying prospect.

Though, as I keep pointing out, she basically couldn't do any worse than Bush has done. In fact she'd be likely to do far *better* than Bush did...but then one could hardly do worse. I mean, what are the odds of her responding to an attack against the nation by attacking an enemy of the attackers?

3:45 PM  
Blogger The Mystic said...

It's truly unbelievable how incoherent that speech was. She literally made no sense for 90% of it. You could kinda sorta guess at what she was trying to say, but that was the only way you could make sense of it.

A transcript of that speech would be a hilarious disaster. This is literally what she said at one point:

"Let me go back quickly to a comfortable analogy for me, and that's sports. Basketball. And I use it because you are naive if you don't see a full court press from the national level picking away right now a good point guard. Here's what she does. She drives through a full court press protecting the ball, keeping her head up 'cause she needs to keep her eye on the basket and she knows exactly when to pass the ball so that the team can win, and that is what I'm doing, keeping our eye on the ball. That represents sound priorities remember they include energy independence and smaller government and national security and freedom and I know when to pass the ball for victory."



That was literally the worst speech I've ever seen. Ever. Seriously. The worst ever. Not only in politics, either. That includes half-assed, hungover freshman projects. It includes 6th grade projects that were never done and yet presented. Worst speech I've ever seen, bar none.

It was like she was doing a parody of herself.

10:28 AM  
Blogger tehr0x0r said...

I had not read this until Mystic sent me a message at work telling me just how bad the speech was. I then proceed to read it and, had I not known it was real I would have laughed at how stupid it was. I agree with WS that I just don't get how people think she is even remotely qualified to be president. At least I always understood what Bush was saying. It might have been in very sloppy English and the arguments he made were flawed 99% of the time, but at least it was semi coherent. With Palian I am not even sure what she is trying to say.

7:25 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

They're drooling morons fueled by nothing but hate.

Mirror time. God, she went back to being the governor of a small state and the left followed her all the way home.

But she's gone now. The left will have to find a new outlet for their venom, since defending the president's policies is far too difficult. But I'm sure they'll find a new object of abuse, and hey, there's always Karl Rove.

That said, she was unqualified for the presidency. Picking her also showed McCain's bad judgment, and helped him lose.

2:25 AM  

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