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Truth is Utterly Optional

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Rarely does my blogging divert from energy and environmental issues, as we so desperately need to Get Energy Smart! NOW!!! on the path to Energize America toward a prosperous, climate-friendly society. Rarely ...

Amid the flood of revelations of biblical proportions about Sarah Palin, which seems destined to last for at least 40 days and 40 nights, here is an item that might not be receiving the focus that it merits.

I've been hearing about his Senate speeches since I was in, like, the second grade.

Obviously, this is the attempt by the running mate of a 72-year old ill man to try to make an issue of Joe Biden's 65 years and over 30 years of public service.

But, importantly, this is clearly a lie, an untruth, not even rating into the category of truthiness.

Truly, the core question: Is there such a thing as honor without honesty? Can anyone, anyone with even an iota of common sense, look at Sarah Palin's comment and believe it?

"I've been hearing about his Senate speeches since I was in, like, the second grade," she told an audience in Columbus, Ohio -- emphasizing her youth, as well as suggesting an unusual attentiveness to the earliest speeches of Biden, who was sworn in when she was 8. WashPost, 1 Oct 08

That article is an interesting examination of how Sarah Palin is "armed with a smile and sometimes a rifle", looking at how her exaggerated emotional style and 'smile' can reach people through the television and touch (some of) them despite any absence of substance in what she says.

But, let us return to this quote ... Sarah Palin was "hearing about" the "Senate speeches" of the junior Senator from Delaware in second grade?

Who are we kidding here?

Who is she trying to kid?

Who is insane enough to believe her?

If one reads today's Washington Post, the front page has Sarah Palin's strengths rooted in Alaska. This goes through her youth. An outdoors and very athletic-focused youth. No television in summer for that household and rare otherwise. Remember, those are the days before the "tubes" of internet. This wasn't a household with the New York Times, Chicago Sun-Times, or Washington Star on the breakfast table every morning. Newsweek or Time magazine as required bedtime reading for the second-grader?

1972 ...

What is the chance that an Alaska second-grader knew the name of more than 5 Senators, if any? (Perhaps the two from Alaska ... perhaps. Perhaps George Mcgovern, due to the presidential election ... perhaps. But, even that is likely stretching it for second graders.)

In this year, it seems quite possible that many American second-graders could name a number of Senators. Obama, McCain, Biden, Clinton ... those four might actually get some decent percentage of name recognition. But, in the days of internet, do we really think that 1 percent are watching (excuse me, "hearing about") speeches from junior Senators?

The McCain-Pain ticket is demanding that Americans suspend all disbelief.

The GoPac training program relies on unquestioning, unthoughtful audiences.

The absurdity of not being able to name/discuss any Supreme Court cases. The absurdity of not being able to name/discuss any sources of information of import. The absurdity of claims that Sarah "Pit Bull with Lipstick" Palin is perhaps the nation's top energy expert. The absurdity of their inability to get energy (and other) facts right. The absurdity of claiming that living in Alaska somehow, inherently, makes one a foreign policy expert (after all, it is closer to Russia than Delaware, no?). The absurdity of it all ...

And, well, it is clear that for McCain-Pain,

Truth is utterly optional.

And, the nation should ask a simple question: Can their be honor without honesty?