Monday, September 22, 2008

Palin Vapidity in Front of the Homies, and my Debate Predictions

Sarah Palin made her first appearance at a controlled town hall full of McCain sycophants, and she still couldn't answer a simple question:

"UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Governor Palin, there has been quite a bit of discussion about your perceived lack of foreign policy experience. And I want to give you your chance. If you could please respond to that criticism and give us specific skills that you think you have to bring to the White House to rebut that or mitigate that concern.

PALIN: Well, I think because I’m a Washington outsider that opponents are going to be looking for a whole lot of things that they can criticize and they can kind of try to beat the candidates here, who chose me as his partner, to kind of tear down the ticket. But as for foreign policy, you know, I think that I am prepared and I know that on January 20th, if we are so blessed as to be sworn into office as your president and vice president, certainly we’ll be ready. I’ll be ready. I have that confidence. I have that readiness.

And if you want specifics with specific policy or countries, go ahead and you can ask me. You can even play stump the candidate if you want to. But we are ready to serve."


Pathetic. It's the only word that comes to mind. She sounds like the guy from Fargo who kept insisting that he was cooperating with the police while refusing to answer any question they asked him. Also, I wish someone would clue these people into the fact that confidence and readiness are only assets when you know what you are doing. A confident, ready ignoramus is BAD. It's dangerous. It leads to things like, well, Iraq. Would you submit to surgery by someone who knew nothing about medicine but was confident and ready? Confidence is no substitute for intelligence and skill.

She's going to get smashed in the debates, right? Of course she will, as will McCain, by any factual, substantive measure. But don't think that will matter at the ballot box. Don't you all remember Al Gore smashing Bush substantively while Dubya smirked and said nothing? No, it was Gore that lost at the polls because he rolled his eyes and sighed at Bush's vapidity. McCain and Palin will soundbite their way through the debates, all the intellectuals will laugh at them, and nothing else will change.

The only way the debates will have an effect on the election is if either Biden or Obama come off as condescending or arrogant (how dare you treat an idiot like one!), or if McCain has a senility meltdown that even AARP couldn't forgive. Otherwise, they'll just be a sideshow for each side to cheer on their champion.

3 comments:

AJ said...

Unfortunately, I think your predictions will be correct. As usual, I'm impressed with your insight. If you were a Biden or Obama advisor, what would your pre-debate advice be to them in order to change this predicted course for the better?

ScienceAvenger said...

Thanks for the kind words. If I knew what they should do, or rather how to do it, I'd have said so. Funny that the Framers never say so either. The "what" seems simple enough - they must find a way to argue against what McCain and Palin will say in a way that people not making rational decisions will respond to. Humor can do this, but it can also backfire in a big way.

I'd certainly point blank ask Palin if she thought the earth was more like thousands of years old, or billions of years old, and explain why it is relevant to our scientific age that someone who ignores solid science is running for office. It's the one question sure to cost her votes no matter how she answers.

Troublesome Frog said...

I'd certainly point blank ask Palin if she thought the earth was more like thousands of years old, or billions of years old, and explain why it is relevant to our scientific age that someone who ignores solid science is running for office.

That seems to me to be a good way of getting thrown into the "OMG anti-Christian!" pile, even by people who don't believe in the crackpot version of natural history. You'd be seen as heaping scorn on somebody's deeply held religious beliefs--which is OK as long as those beliefs are sufficiently far from the voting public's. I don't think that Palin's are.

I'd be busily tying McCain and his rhetoric to Gramm and bank failures at this point. Forget Bush. People disagree on the war and it's possible for McCain to pull off the "I was wrong for the right reasons, and it might still work out OK" defense. Just about everybody agrees (or will shortly) that the regulatory system's failures lead to this crisis, and McCain has a much longer history and much cozier relationships with the people and positions that caused that unambiguous disaster than he ever did with Bush and the Iraq war.