Saturday, September 06, 2008

More Palin piffle from the Republicans

Let's start by emphasizing that right-wing Republicans have no monopoly on shameless hypocrisy, breathtaking double standards, cynical dishonesty, unintentionally comic self-parody, and ludicrously absurd talking points delivered with a straight face.

However, one can't avoid being struck by the extent to which the selection of Sarah Palin as McCain's running-mate for Vice President has sent the Republicans and their public-relations talking heads into overdrive in this respect.

John Stewart of the Daily Show put together a great collection of examples HERE. This is something Stewart is often exceptionally good at. I recommend listening to the whole thing (which isn't that long), but here's just one example.

As we know, Palin has been Governor of Alaska for a bit less than 2 years. Before that, from 1996-2002 she was Mayor of Wasilla, a town whose population at the time seems to have been somewhere around 7,000 (most estimates that I've seen range from less than 6,000 when she took office to somewhere between 7,000 & 8,000 today). Karl Rove, in praising her selection, mentioned among her other qualifications that she was "the Mayor of [...] I think, the second-largest city in Alaska, before she ran for Governor." Actually, Alaska's second and third largest cities are Fairbanks and Juno, respectively, and Juneau is more than three times as large as Wasilla, but be that as it may ...

A month ago, as Stewart reminds us, "Tim Kaine, former Mayor of Richmond, population 200,000, former Lieutenant-Governor of Virginia, and now current Virginia Governor was on Barack Obama's Vice-Presidential short-list." Here's what Rove said about Kaine at the time:
He's been a Governor for three years ... he was Mayor of the 105th-largest city in America. And again, with all due respect to Richmond, Virginia, it's smaller than Chula Vista, California, Aurora, Colorado, Mesa or Gilbert, Arizona, North Las Vegas or Henderson, Nevada--it's not a big town.

So if you were to pick Governor Kaine, it would be an intensely political choice, where it said, You know what, I'm really not first and foremost concerned with, is this person capable of being President of the United States?
Then there's Bill O'Reilly on teenage pregnancy, Dick Morris & others on the "gender card," etc. (Though Stewart adds that, "In Dick Morris's defense, he is a lying sack of shit.")

Well, listen to the whole video clip.

=> Also, in the category of "Who do they think they're kidding?" ... remember the immediate claim that Gov. Palin does so have foreign-policy experience, because Alaska is just across the Bering Strait from Russia ... and she has military experience, too, because she is Commander-in-Chief of the Alaska National Guard? In case you think I might be making those up, see HERE and HERE ... but this is like shooting fish in a barrel.

--Jeff Weintraub