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Michael Shaw

Michael Shaw

Posted: December 12, 2010 04:50 PM



If I find the fantastically clever Sarah Palin to be one of the shallowest and blatantly self-serving politicians, err, political celebrities I've ever seen, it doesn't stop me from taking pause upon seeing these AP shots from Franklin Graham's cholera treatment center in Haiti.

Damn right it's revolting seeing Sarah getting her hair made up like this field hospital is her movie set -- same as it's irksome seeing Sara and Greta Van Susteren wearing far-less-than-compassionate expressions and acting like looky-loos while being trailed by a video guy, Greta sporting a huge piece of gear herself.

2010-12-12-PalinHaitisanitizerCholera2.jpg


And then, the multiple shots of Sarah sanitizing and washing her hands suggests the former Gov is primarily concerned, above all humanitarian else, about catching something.

There are two questions I can't quite answer, however. 1.) Compassion notwithstanding, could these exact same images have been created if it was Biden, Bill Clinton, Hillary or Nancy Pelosi moving around this camp with media in tow over the same afternoon? 2.) How much was it the Palin team's behavior, attitude or reputation that so encouraged these AP photographers (one or both local?) along with AP photo editors to suddenly drop the typical, everyday play-along (since we all get the difference between this vs. this) and deliver these scathing photo op-defying pictures of "the Sarah show?"

(Update 10:30pm PST: Credit is due to various commenters for clarifying that the "hairdresser" in the top photo is, in fact, Sarah Palin's daughter, Bristol. This clarification certainly raises questions about the clarity and meaning of the AP caption below stating that Palin was "having her hair done." Still, the fact that Palin's daughter was attending to Palin's hair, as opposed to a professional stylist, only reinforces the concern I raise in the last paragraph of the post about the AP's objectivity in focusing on these particular images.)

For a breakdown of the latest visual spin, visit BagNewsNotes (and follow our Twitter feed here).

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(photo 1: Dieu Nalio Chery/AP. caption: Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, center, has her hair done during a visit to a cholera treatment center set up by the NGO Samaritan's Purse in Cabaret, Haiti, Saturday Dec. 11, 2010. Palin arrived Saturday in Haiti as part of a brief humanitarian mission in an impoverished nation struggling to overcome post-election violence and a cholera epidemic. At right, Palin's husband, Todd Palin.  photo 2: Ramon Espinosa/AP. caption: Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, second from left, visits a cholera treatment center run by Rev. Franklin Graham's relief organization Samaritan's Purse accompanied by Fox News Channel journalist Greta Van Susteren, fourth from left, in Cabaret, Haiti, Saturday Dec. 11, 2010. Palin arrived in Haiti as part of a brief humanitarian mission in the impoverished nation struggling to overcome post-election violence and a cholera epidemic. photo 3: Ramon Espinosa/AP. caption: Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is pictured through the windshield of a car while rubbing her hands with hand sanitizer after visiting a cholera treatment center run by Rev. Franklin Graham's relief organization Samaritan's Purse in Cabaret, Haiti, Saturday Dec. 11, 2010. Palin arrived in Haiti as part of a brief humanitarian mission in the impoverished nation struggling to overcome post-election violence and a cholera epidemic. photo 4: Dieu Nalio Chery/AP. caption:Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin wipes her hands after visiting a cholera treatment center set up by the NGO Samaritan's Purse in Cabaret, Haiti, Saturday Dec. 11, 2010. Palin arrived Saturday in Haiti as part of a brief humanitarian mission in an impoverished nation struggling to overcome post-election violence and a cholera epidemic.)
 

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