As I said in my previous post, I have limited sympathy for Sarah Palin.
However, this, from Andrew Sullivan (on top of the never-ending flogging of Trig Palin conspiracy theories), is outrageous. I saw the reference to the “white trash concupiscence” Palin-slam in Douthat’s column and wondered who could have written that. Despite my knowledge of Andrew’s raging PDS, I was shocked. And saddened, because I used to quite like Andrew’s blog (and have not forgotten that he was the first to link to mine when I started it). I fully intend for this to be my last visit to The Daily Dish, and I have to say that at this point, if someone started a campaign to get The Atlantic website to drop Andrew, I’d back it. Imagine the reaction if a journalist/blogger writing about a black politician referred to “ghetto concupiscence”, without even using the word “black.”
She’s not the savior of conservatives.
And she’s not nearly as much a victim of the “liberal media” as her defenders make her out to be (at least if we’re talking about the mainstream media; there has been some incredible nastiness on left-wing blogs, though at least no one that I know of tried to claim that she left a trail of bodies in her wake). About the mockery of her religion: yes, it was suggested with no real evidence that she believes the dinosaurs lived 5,000 years ago (it’s actually unknown whether she’s a creationist or not; she does support the teaching of both “intelligent design” and evolution in public schools). However, I do think she got off rather easy on her connection to a witch-hunting African pastor (I suspect for two reasons: one, bringing up a wacko pastor connection would have inevitably called up the ghost of Jeremiah Wright; two, it might have seemed somewhat un-PC to make too much fun of a crazy pastor from Africa and his looney medieval beliefs).
Is it possible that in a few years Palin will reinvent herself as a brilliant candidate? Perhaps; F. Scott Fitzgerald notwithstanding, there are second acts in American life. But it would have to be one hell of a second act. And if it is, I’ll gladly eat my words. As I said in the article, and in other venues, I think there is definitely a place and a need for a conservative/libertarian/individualist feminsm that embraces female strength, femininity, family, and small government — and for the kind of female leadership Palin could have provided if she had lived up to her billing.