October 5, 2008

A smiling John McCain crushed under Palin's high-heeled shoe.

Nice illustration by Barry Blitt (the artist who did the famous Michelle-and-Barack New Yorker cover).

The accompanying column, by Frank Rich, is not Palin-friendly:
But the debate’s most telling passage arrived when Biden welled up in recounting his days as a single father after his first wife and one of his children were killed in a car crash. Palin’s perky response — she immediately started selling McCain as a “consummate maverick” again — was as emotionally disconnected as Michael Dukakis’s notoriously cerebral answer to the hypothetical 1988 debate question about his wife being “raped and murdered.” If, as some feel, Obama is cool, Palin is ice cold. She didn’t even acknowledge Biden’s devastating personal history.
The bitch! Hey, wait, does that mean she's cerebral now?
... She has more testosterone than anyone else at the top of her party.
And a guy.
Palin is an antidote to the whiny Republican image that [Barney] Frank nailed.
Frank's column is full of sexual imagery, but I think that one was unintentional. (And, by the way, the Blitt illustration is arguably sexual.)
You have to wonder how long it will be before [Republicans] plead with [McCain] to think of his health, get out of the way and pull the ultimate stunt of flipping the ticket. Palin, we can be certain, wouldn’t even blink.

44 comments:

WB said...

Rich is incoherent at the best of times, but with Palin it's just new "Bush is a cretin, but an evil genius fox kind of cretin" stuff. I do believe these folks who loathe Palin and cannot stop from blathering their loathing all over the place, are addicted to their Bush hate and they are just piling on no matter that she does not deserve it at all. They can't stop themselves.

AllenS said...

Too bad that Palin has to carry the deadweight that is McCain.

Dang. I started out another post with the first word too. It's a hard habit to break.

Michael_H said...

Why does Frank Rich matter? the only people who take him seriously are the snarko-elites. He plays to the audience. Bah.

marklewin said...

The whole thing is bizarre, crazy...The same behavior is tolerated or intolerated, accepted or rejected, good or bad, based solely on one's party affiliation or ideology. When we come across this phenomenon in our personal lives we call it out, yet it is SOP in political discourse. It's why so many people think politics suck.

jdeeripper said...

Frank's column is full of sexual imagery, but I think that one was unintentional. (And, by the way, the Blitt illustration is arguably sexual.)

Feminists would argue it's not about sex it's about power.

There's something very Andrew Sullivanish about Frank Rich. He used to be a theater critic. But he's married to a woman now and has kids too.

rhhardin said...

The NYT's job is to expose bad people.

Palladian said...

"The NYT's job is to expose bad people."

Well they certainly expose themselves as bad people often enough.

Michael said...

"The NYT's job is to expose bad people."

And they do! They even let many of them publish their badness and idiocy to be seen by the world!

Darcy said...

I love it when Rich has his panties in a twist.

Robt said...

I think Rich has got it right.

When I look at Sarah Palin, I think "All The Kings Men."

Palin's skill isn't really rooted in principles, though she clearly has some that helps her decide what church to go to and who is not a "real" American and who is "real" American.

She knows politics suits her gifts, which combine a kind of savvy about what gets people going(which includes the people at her rallies and the beltway types like Brooks and Noonan and Rich Lowry (all three just plain embarassing-- they sound like limousine liberals talking about how much they like L'il Wayne, too), an instinct for maneuvering through the power politics of institutional relationships and a front of the camera persona she could ratchet up at will.

What we are watching is Palin realizing that, barring the success of the negative advertising McCain has committed to (100%) according to reports, it's time to protect her "brand." My guess is that Steve Schmidt knows it too, and he's thinking about the future. I wouldn't be surprised at all to find out later that she's begun, even now, to set up her own organization based on the McCain's bush folks. (Her Alaskan political career shows a good politicians instinct for when to jump ship). Watch her start to run what looks like an entirely separate campaign from McCain.

Pogo said...

What's the point?

The conclusions drawn by the various scribblers in Pravda (i.e., the collective MSM) are entirely predictable. The only possible novelty is the form the denigration of the Enemy will take.

Whether funny, substantive, speculative, insane, frightening, or silly, their findings are always always always along Party lines.

Does this collusion, this submission to one political party, raise concerns?
Not that I can tell, apart from a few measly bloggers, refuseniks all.

Sorry, but I cannot bear to read more bullshit today. or in fact ever again after their candidate is elected.

I'll bear the disgrace of one-Party rule extending into all programming, including comedy and sportscasting, but for now I am not required to support any of it economically, except PBS and NPR.

What comment could I possibly make?
"Gosh, more lies and near-lies."
My ability to say that in some new way clearly suffers in comparison to their capacity to churn it out.

peter hoh said...

A delicious caricature. I love it.

Oxbay said...

To hate is to breathe.

I am Frank Rich and I approve this message.

Oxbay said...

I'm not really Frank Rich.

PatCA said...

That's rich, Rich--it's a conspiracy!

They always end up there, don't they?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Palin is ice cold. She didn’t even acknowledge Biden’s devastating personal history

What did he want her to do...Go over and give Joe a hug? Start a pity party? How many in the "tee vee" audience, especially those younger than 30 (Obama's crowd) actually know about Joe's tragic family event? Few, I'll wager.

They are in the middle of a debate to show that they can handle the issues before us and possibly be the person who can step up into the Presidency.

She didn't make a big deal of Joe's, very understandable emotional moment....what a bitch. Had she done so, they would brand her as an overly emotional woman ruled by her feelings and unable to handle the pressure. Damned if you do and damned if you don't.

chickenlittle said...

jdeeripper wrote: There's something very Andrew Sullivanish about Frank Rich.


They both practice satyrical bigotry.

PatCA said...

"Palin is ice cold. She didn’t even acknowledge Biden’s devastating personal history."

And he brought it up to "defend" her charge of...she knows what it's like to sit around and wonder about finances? What does that have to do with the death of his family decades ago?

I think he did it for sympathy. Totally creepy.

Robt said...

Two things:

What I thought made the moment poignant-- and not creepy-- was that Biden was responding to Palin's single minded insistence that she represents family, struggle, and work in everyday life and that only the people of Wasilla, Alaska know what it's like to raise kids and struggle everyday to go to work, make bills, and navigate raising your kids right. Or that the people of Wasilla, Alaska stand in for "regular folk" the nation over. It's tiresome.

The fact that she couldn't stop to hear that may point to a weakness in the debate format-- she could just relentlessly plug in her talking points and sound bites. But she seems to try and make a virtue of not having to listen or learn anything.

EDH said...

Palin’s perky response — she immediately started selling McCain as a “consummate maverick” again — was as emotionally disconnected as Michael Dukakis’s notoriously cerebral answer to the hypothetical 1988 debate question about his wife being “raped and murdered.”

Huh? Dukakis was "emotionally disconnected" from the hypothetical situation of his wife being raped, not a blubbering debate opponent.

Host with the Most said...

I liked the message in church this morning. It was about hell, the resting place for those who reject the true God and His ways.

The person in hell will be in a black hole, imploding pressure, no vision, complete blindness. Always on fire, always burning, but never consumed. Always alive, but in never-ending pain. The mind will always be alive, but never able to change the burning, the pressure. And a million miles away from the next lost soul - no communication with any other being, ever. But, and this is the great part, the person in hell will know about the ones in Paradise.

Obama and Michele, Joe and Jill and their families are definitely going there.
So will most of their supporters. Not because they support Obama. They actually support Obama because they are already on their way to hell.

Sad.

Oh well, where else can we screw the country?

Trooper York said...

The Gospel today was the famous one about"The stone that was rejected will become the corner stone"

You could read it as a parable about Sarah Palin who if she loses this race could come back to cornerstone of a New Republic party that will be true to it's conservative prinicpals and represent the common man, you know Joe Sixpack.

Just sayn'

Ry said...

This may be an oversimplification, however: Is it true that the "actual polling" has McCain ahead by double digits? And, if so - is it because there is no way to surmount his management of the "big three" issues: energy (Palin); military; and, that a Republican President is the only choice to derail the democratic "tax surge"?

blake said...

Actual polling?

Dudley Do-right said...

I wouldn't be surprised to find that Sarah's started to chart her own course in this election. What does she have to lose. If she just stands by, McCain's punch-pulling, gutless, hands-across-the-aisle bipartisan muddle headedness will lose them the election. That girl's not used to losing and certainly won't accept losing without a fight.

My bet is that she's already put him on notice; either get out there and fight or get out of the way so she can. He needs a good kick in the butt and she's just the one to administer it. She's might be the only Republican who doesn't sit around worrying about appearances, job security, and legacies. Nor does she worry about being called a racist.

If John and Sarah do pull it off, the dynamics of their relationship will be interesting to watch the next 4 years because the success will be 90% hers.

hdhouse said...

wb and all the go-p-er's who now face a clobbering in a month...

Frank Rich and the Times, writing and thought, seem to be your raw meat when faced with the empty plate that is your ticket. You can't go back to President WooWoo or Darth as they have deserted you and the country. You can't stand where you are (pun intended) because you are going to get crushed and you know it. You can't bitch 'n moan about the future because you made it.

So the only thing you can do is snarl and smear something and someone to whom you cannot compete and you, by your own words, don't pay any attention to anyway.

Ya' Betcha!

hdhouse said...

yo POGO Pogo said...
"The conclusions drawn by the various scribblers in Pravda (aka the MSM)....

yo Pogo, Pravda, last I knew meant "the truth"....

Ya' betcha!

Beau said...

I wouldn't be surprised at all to find out later that she's begun, even now, to set up her own organization based on the McCain's bush folks. (Her Alaskan political career shows a good politicians instinct for when to jump ship). Watch her start to run what looks like an entirely separate campaign from McCain.

Clinton V. Palin 2012!

I agree that that this campaign will have whetted Palin's appetite for her own presidential race. McCain's camp clearly considered this prior to bringing her own board.
"Schmidt and others assembled a team of well-known Republican hands for the veep squad. The campaign pointedly did not hire anyone from Palinworld."
http://www.newsweek.com/id/162396

At this point it's probably a relatively safe bet that there will be a return of Palin for the 2012 election.

blake said...

yo Pogo, Pravda, last I knew meant "the truth"....

Only to rubes.

There were two big Russian news sources, I believe. Prvada ("truth") and Isvestia ("news").

The saying was, "There is no pravda in Isvestia and no isvestia in Pravda".

Electric Citizen said...

She's Harriet Truman.

Pogo said...

Shit-all, hdhouse, any reference to "Pravda" acknowledges that the word means its opposite. How could you not know that?

Synova said...

And he brought it up to "defend" her charge of...she knows what it's like to sit around and wonder about finances? What does that have to do with the death of his family decades ago?

I mentioned this before.

The whole exchange was just weird. Because what he was defending against wasn't what she said. She was making a claim (clearly justifiable) that she and Todd are middle class and, if comfortable now, spent a whole lot of years not anywhere close to that.

And Biden starts talking about how he knows what it's like to be a single mother? I suspected at the time that he'd *prepared* a counter to the moral authority claim of motherhood... which Palin never made.

I didn't find it poignant, though I believed he wasn't faking getting choked up, I wondered why he brought it up at all and why he seemed to go on... until he couldn't go on any more.

As for her coldness... some people don't go for public emotionality and would view making a deal of it as rubbing it in. I would. The only thing *worse* than getting teary in public is when people don't have the decency to pretend it never happened.

AlphaLiberal said...

Sarah Palin: Bush in a Skirt

a psychiatrist who learned from veterans said...

My 17 yo tells me that the politicians are 'being real like they were on Oprah.' Biden was prepared to be 'real' so went with this as 'real family.' There's a lot at stake. Rather like the Hollywood studio boss said, 'Sincerity is the most important thing and if you can fake that you've really got it made.'

B. said...

"She knows politics suits her gifts,"

Unlike Bill Clinton, LBJ, Ronald Reagan, and oh, just about everyone else who ever ran for office.

Her skill isn't rooted in principles? Who talks like this? Who thinks like this?

AlphaLiberal said...

Love it!

We are not a nation of whiners, as Phil Gramm would have it, but the G.O.P. is now the party of whiners. That rebranding became official when Republican House leaders moaned that a routine partisan speech by Nancy Pelosi had turned their members against the bailout bill. As the stock market fell nearly 778 points, Barney Frank taunted his G.O.P. peers with pitch-perfect mockery: “Somebody hurt my feelings, so I will punish the country!”

Frank Rich agrees with me.

Synova said...

I don't think that the Republicans failed to vote with Pelosi because she was an *ss. I think that most of them thought the bill was bad, or had constituents who thought the bill was *very* bad. Which is why all those Democrats *also* didn't vote for it.

Now the thinking... that it is stupid to think that people are going to make political choices because their feelings were hurt... I just wish the Dems would bother to apply that to international politics. Where is the scorn and ridicule directed at all those nations who "don't like us" when they fail to do what's right because Bush didn't do the pretty quite well enough? And once Obama is elected then everyone will *like* us, and then they'll work together to solve problems in the world?

Yeah, right.

It's not Bush and never has been. Nations behave according to their own interests and putting a different fellow at the head of this nation will not get those nations to do what they don't want to do. They'll just find a different excuse.

Synova said...

On the other hand... if those votes were borderline and the congress persons felt they were making a concession and helping out Pelosi and instead of thanks they get a slap in the face?

Yeah, that could change a person's mind... not from voting what they knew what right, but from voting what they felt wasn't very good but important to show solidarity and confidence.

No reason to show solidarity when Pelosi took the opportunity to shove their faces in it.

AlphaLiberal said...

Synova misstates the record:

And Biden starts talking about how he knows what it's like to be a single mother?

No, he said "single parent." Perhaps you understand the difference between "mother" and "parent?"

He was responding to a statement by Palin insinuating she is the only one who knows about parenting in America.

hdhouse said...

alpha-lib....

angst not about the depth of non-understanding found in the right wing that inhabits this blog. they are as removed from reality as their party will be soon removed from the power they dreamed about and squandered.

mccain would normally use GWB to stump for him. now he has "Ms. Ya'Betcha". How good can she be if she only exceeds our dear President.

Synova said...

Parenting?

I didn't hear it that way. Maybe in general terms but certainly not some claim to exclusivity. And I thought it was almost certainly in terms of economics... worry about money.

Without the transcript I'm going by memory and my reaction *while watching it* was "What is he talking about? Who has accused him of not knowing what it's like to be a parent?" And I do think that he did say "single mother" at some point.

Sure, it's only my own reaction while watching the debate but I really *really* can't stand it when someone tries the "I'm a MOTHER" routine. Can't stand it at church. Despise it in politics. I mean... oh my freaking dog, remember Sally Fields and some idiocy about mothers running the world? Nails. On. Chalkboard.

I really think I'd have noticed if Palin was brushing up against that sort of thing. I really *really* hate it.

Synova said...

But the notion that somehow, because I'm a man, I don't know what it's like to raise two kids alone,

This part. Who expressed the "notion" that because Biden is a MAN that he doesn't know what it's like to raise two kids alone?

Who said such a thing?

NO ONE.

Because they'd be terminally stupid to do so, for one thing, and because the gender wars are a left-thing, not a right-thing.

It looks like he didn't say single "mother"... it's just that his very deliberate counter point that some one has presented the notion that a MAN can't know what it's like to raise children alone... as if this is something only a woman can do... it seemed obvious he was talking about single mothers.

But no one ever said such a thing. Certainly not Palin. And I doubt anyone else did either.

And while I thought it strange at the time, I didn't think it entirely calculated. I figured that he had prepared for the "mother as ultimate moral authority" gambit... but Palin failed to try it... and went with what he'd prepared... and then got caught up with it.

But I'm starting to wonder. Did he plan, not to counter an expected argument, but did he actually *plan* to get emotional?

Robt said...

B--

True, she shares gifts with other politicians as communicators. It remains to be seen if she shares Reagan and Clinton's impressive gifts for persuading people who aren't their natural constituency, or for converting those people. Right now, she's like the Troggs-- one good song based on chords everyone has already played and will probably be covered by people after she's gone from the scene.

But she does not share the gifts of the politicians you name as thinkers about policy and government process. At least they hasn't shown themselves yet and she makes no real effort to demonstrate that she has those gifts. Those were the qualities McCain seemed to have the tempted me to vote for him. This lack makes her dangerously limited and unfit for the presidency or the vice presidency and made me question his principles and judgment.

veni vidi vici said...

"Palin is ice cold. She didn’t even acknowledge Biden’s devastating personal history."

I'm with Synova in that Biden's response and bringing up (for the umpteenth time - replete with the crocodile tears) this strangely defensive take on his horrible family tragedy of 30-odd years ago was odd, mildly jarring, somewhat inappropriate to the moment at hand, and revelatory of a certain type of "pussy-assery" that I personally find a little off-putting when it's coming from a guy sporting enough botox to fuel half of Beverly Hills' ladies auxiliary.

Pardon my suspicion, and I don't claim to live inside Biden's head or anything -- I'm just going by the way he flashes that completely obviously fake smile and otherwise conveys his automaton-like phony "emotiveness". This is a fellow who's been debating and deciding all "the big issues" for over 30 years, most of which time in office was following his family's tragedy. In that time, he found a lovely new wife and has ostensibly had many years of intervening happiness and ups and downs and a chance to get some emotional distance from that event.

I find a politician that can put on the tears like that in connection with events so distant in the past highly suspicious. If not suspect of charlatanry, he's unbalanced in a way that doesn't suit him well for the stresses of the high executive office he's currently seeking. It's funny that they project that imbalance on the top of the other ticket, but here it's applauded on full display.

We are a pathetic polity in this country. If it weren't for the astoundingly lame offerings on both tickets, I'd say this was a crossroads of some sort. As it is, though, we're lucky this is just going to be one of those "placeholder" elections at best.

Then again, that's what I thought about Bush during the first few months of his presidency (although I had expected more (and eventually got it from fall 2001 onwards for a few years) during the 2000 election campaign).