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Giles Slade

Giles Slade

Posted: September 29, 2008 03:15 PM

Sarah Palin, Straw Man


Well, okay, she doesn't know much more than how to field-dress a moose, but attacking her could create a redneck cause-celebre and unify the disheartened right in its opposition to the only candidate for change.

So what to do?

First: Don't call her 'dumbshit' when she muffs standard questions in media interviews. Instead, understand the basis of her popularity with god-fearing rural folk who think a hard-nosed family woman can't go far wrong. Let her ignorance speak for itself. Given the natural course of events, most Americans will soon be scared... 'witless'... that this woman might eventually have her hand on the button.

Second: Don't laugh when all her staffers refuse to answer subpoenas during a state investigation of her interference in due process. Instead, see the kind of personal loyalty that runs like a river among members of the fundamental right. Remember the Alamo, right? This is a frontier virtue as basic to America's self-image as turkeys and pumpkin pie. Don't give the opposition a chance to solidify by mocking their most cherished beliefs.

Third: Don't insult her pregnant, teenage daughter, since this really is an unseemly attack on family. The only time Dick Cheney achieved anything close to sympathy was when he defended his daughter's sexuality. What politician can control his or her family, anyway? Obama was right, 'hands off'.

Fourth: Let America's women catch up with how badly Sarah Palin performs, but don't try to accelerate or encourage this. Of course, compared to Hillary Clinton and Nancy Pelosi, the Governor of Alaska is a prize chump. But why shouldn't female politicians be as free to be chumps as their male counterparts? God knows, even if you start at the top, there are some really dumb men in federal politics. So why should it be remarkable that a woman can also be as stupid as a bag of hammers. But let American women decide that she discredits them. Don't make her a victim of sexism.

Fifth: There are only 40 days left, but exercise a little patience. The reality of Sarah Palin is that she proves Barack Obama's thesis about John McCain:

'Even extensive experience does not guarantee good judgment.'

McCain has been making a lot of mistakes recently. Palin is just the most obvious of these.

Sixth: Before the election, think and talk about the future of America with as many people as you can. Is it right and sensible that this person might conceivably become executive-in-chief? Can we afford the possibility of another really bad presidency during these troubling times?