Tag Archives: GOP

Palin’s Cunning Sleight of Hand

Sarah Palin’s Sleight of Hand

Sarah Palin’s Sleight of Hand

Liberals had a blast mocking Sarah Palin last weekend when she was caught addressing the Tea Party Convention with a cheat sheet scrawled on her hand. Even the president’s press secretary, Robert Gibbs, couldn’t resist getting into the act and treated a White House briefing to a Palin hand gag of his own.

Yet the laughter rang hollow. You had to wonder if Palin, who is nothing if not cunning, had sprung a trap. She knows all too well that the more the so-called elites lampoon her, the more she cements her cred with the third of the country that is her base. Her hand hieroglyphics may not have been speaking aids but bait.

If so, mission accomplished. Her sleight of hand gave the anti-Palin chorus another prod to deride her as an empty-headed, subliterate clown, and her fans another cue to rally. The only problem is that the serious import of Palin’s overriding political message got lost in this distracting sideshow. That message has the power to upend the Obama presidency — even if Palin, with her record-low approval ratings, never gets anywhere near the White House.

The Palin shtick has now become the Republican catechism, parroted by every party leader in Washington. Their constant refrain, delivered with cynicism but not irony, is this: Republicans are the anti-big-government, anti-stimulus, anti-Wall Street, pro-Tea Party tribunes of the common folk. “This is about the people,” as Palin repeatedly put it last weekend while pocketing $100,000 of the Tea Partiers’ money.

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Why the Washington Post Was Right to Publish Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin‘s column today in the Washington Post calling for President Obama to boycott the Copenhagen summit is pure malarkey. Which is why the Post was absolutely right to print it.

Those who are claiming that the column was factually inaccurate miss the point. Since when has anything that Palin ever said been accurate? It’s like accusing Sarah Silverman of failing to be serious or Hugh Hefner of being promiscuous.

Palin isn’t interested in accuracy, but causing a stir and, above all, positioning herself as a serious candidate for the GOP’s nomination in 2012, which keeps moving to the right, partly in response to Palin and partly because Palin is responding to it. So far, she’s done an excellent job of trying to establish herself as a major voice in the party. Now she needs to tackle policy, and she’s doing it.

Her column epitomizes conservative conspiracy thinking and ventilates her views rather deftly (does anyone think that Palin actually wrote it?). It accuses a cabal of radical scientists of pushing alarmism about global warming. To be sure, Palin, in order to give her views a veneer of sobriety, concedes that warming is actually taking place, just that it can’t be pinned on humans. How come conservatives, who are always stressing individual moral responsibility, suddenly abdicate it when it comes to global warming?

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The Pit Bull in the China Shop

Sarah Palin vs. Pit Bull

Sarah Palin vs. Pit Bull

At last the American right and left have one issue they unequivocally agree on: You don’t actually have to read Sarah Palin’s book to have an opinion about it. Last Sunday Liz Cheney praised “Going Rogue” as “well-written” on Fox News even though, by her own account, she had sampled only “parts” of it. On Tuesday, Ana Marie Cox, a correspondent for Air America, belittled the book in The Washington Post while confessing that she couldn’t claim to have “completely” read it.

Going Rogue” will hardly be the first best seller embraced by millions for talismanic rather than literary ends. And I am not recommending that others follow my example and slog through its 400-plus pages, especially since its supposed revelations have been picked through 24/7 for a week. But sometimes I wonder if anyone has read all of what Palin would call the “dang” thing. Some of the book’s most illuminating tics have been mentioned barely — if at all — by either its fans or foes. Palin is far and away the most important brand in American politics after Barack Obama, and attention must be paid. Those who wishfully think her 15 minutes are up are deluding themselves.

The book’s biggest surprise is Palin’s wide-eyed infatuation with show-business celebrities. You get nearly as much face time with Tina Fey and the cast of “Saturday Night Live” in “Going Rogue” as you do with John McCain. We learn how happy Palin was to receive calls from Bono and Warren Beatty “to share ideas and insights.” We wade through star-struck lists of campaign cameos by Robert Duvall, Jon Voight (who “blew us away”), Naomi Judd, Gary Sinise and Kelsey Grammer, among many others. Then there are the acknowledgments at the book’s end, where Palin reveals that her intimacy with media stars is such that she can air-kiss them on a first-name basis, from Greta to Laura to Rush.

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Palin’s “Vindictiveness” in Her New Book

Newsweek Editor Says She Seems Out to Repudiate Critics But Thinks “Going Rogue” Shows Her Lacking “Mastery of the Issues”

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin attempts to settle imagined slights in her new book "Going Rogue," which is set to be released Nov. 17th.

There’s lots of high drama surrounding Sarah Palin’s memoir, “Going Rogue.”

The former Republican vice presidential candidate and Alaska governor’s book hits store shelves Tuesday, but it’s already a best-seller.

Portions have leaked, and they’re stirring controversy.

What type of chapter will the book write for her political career?

She’s the latest in a long line of potential presidential hopefuls to pen a book, and Newsweek Senior Editor Michael Hirsh says it could show she, too, is gearing up for a run at the White House.

“I think very much so,” Hirsh told “Early Show Saturday Edition” substitute co-anchor Debye Turner Bell. “There’s a long and storied history there. And Palin has put her own particular stamp on this tradition. Whether it’s going to get her what she wants, which is apparently a national stage leading into (the next presidential race in) 2012, is another question.

“There are a couple things that were somewhat disturbing about Palin that appear in this book,” Hirsh observed, “(including) this streak of vindictiveness toward her political enemies, which we see now include many in the (Arizona Senator and former GOP standard bearer John) McCain camp.

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Sarah Palin’s First Ten Lies from “Going Rogue: An American Life”

"Going Rogue: An American Life" presents Sarah Palin's distorted view of reality.

"Going Rogue: An American Life" presents Sarah Palin's distorted view of politics and reality.

Excerpts from Sarah Palin‘s Going Rogue have been released by several news agencies and other sources who have received advanced copies. Here are the first ten lies from Palin’s memoirs:

  1. The Cover Byline: Palin didn’t write the book by herself. Most books with known ghostwriters list their co-author’s name on the cover. In this case it was Lynn Vincent (a well-known homophobe). Going Rogue does not.
  2. The Subtitle: An American Life. Aside from her infancy, Palin has really spent very little time outside of Alaska, and according to John McCain‘s campaign advisors, was shockingly unfamiliar with American geography and American history. “Alaska,” as John McPhee noted in his resplendent Coming Into the Country, “is a foreign country…Its nature is its own.”
  3. Going Rogue features Palin’s obsession with Katie Couric and characterizes the CBS anchor as “badgering.” Palin refused to prep for the Couric interview because she was more concerned about her popularity in Alaska than about what was best for the campaign. Was it really badgering to ask what books or periodicals Palin read? Palin further claims that Couric suffered from low self-esteem. In fact, according to those close to Palin, it’s the former governor who suffers from low self-esteem and frequently projects that onto other women.
  4. Palin asserts that there was a “jaded aura” around McCain’s political advisors once she entered the campaign. In fact, McCain’s aides bent over backwards to protect Palin and to try to get her up to speed on international affairs. In addition to not knowing whether or not Africa was a continent, according to sources in the McCain campaign, Palin also didn’t understand the difference between England and Great Britain. And much, much more.
  5. Palin contends to have been saddled with legal bills of more than $500,000 resulting from what she calls “frivolous” ethics complaints filed against her. The lion’s share of those bills resulted from the ethics complaint she filed against herself in a legal maneuver to sidestep the Troopergate charges being brought against her by the bipartisan Alaska Legislative Council.
  6. Palin rather astonishingly claims that she was saddled with $50,000 in bills for the legal fees associated with her vice-presidential vetting. A) She was not vetted; B) A McCain campaign advisor says this is “categorically untrue.”
  7. Palin states that she found out only “minutes” before John McCain’s concession speech that she would not be allowed to make remarks of her own introducing McCain. In fact, she had been told at least three times that she would not be allowed to give the speech and kept lying about it in the hopes of creating some last-minute chaos that would allow her to assume the dais.
  8. Palin asserts that her effort to award a license for a natural gas transmission line was turning a “pipe dream” into a pipeline. Although she claimed otherwise in her speech at the GOP convention, there is no pipeline. It remains a pipe dream.
  9. Palin implies that the McCain campaign intentionally bungled the release of information regarding her daughter Bristol’s pregnancy and refused to let her rewrite it. In fact, the McCain campaign allowed her to rework the draft, but the original version went out accidentally. Palin reportedly accepted the recalcitrant staff member’s apology for the mistake, then when she left, ordered her immediately dismissed of her duties.
  10. Palin complains that McCain’s senior advisors, most notably Steve Schmidt, forced her to “stick with the script” they provided her. In fact, Schmidt & Co. were encumbered with the task of keeping Palin from lying and misleading people throughout the campaign, from her well-documented lies about the “Bridge to Nowhere” to her duplicities about her husband Todd’s assocation with the Alaska Independence Party. Palin’s lying to those in the McCain campaign was so troubling to them that they cringed every time she went “off script.”

And that’s just for starters.

Award-winning writer and filmmaker Geoffrey Dunn’s book The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power will be released by St. Martin’s Press in spring 2010.

Geoffrey Dunn
The Huffington Post

Sarah Palin is to Republicans What Joe Lieberman is to Democrats

Senators John McCain and Joe Lieberman appear with former Governor Sarah Palin on Septmber 22, 2008 in Media, Penn.

Senators John McCain and Joe Lieberman appeared with former Governor Sarah Palin on Septmber 22, 2008 in Media, Pennsylvania.

Senator Joe Lieberman was on Fox News Sunday this week speaking on the Ft. Hood tragedy proclaiming his committee was going to “investigate” what he believes is “the most destructive terrorist act to be committed on American soil since 9/11.” So, instead of what would usually and regretfully be called a “fragging” or “friendly fire” or some other euphemism, Lieberman used the Republican Party line to define our two wars as Holy Wars. Any act by a Muslim is a terrorist act. We are in a crusade against evil. Therefore Muslims are evil. We’re good, they’re bad.

Then the Senator from the great state of Connecticut is asked about the Health Care Reform bill. Lieberman brushes up against yet another GOP talking point and says, “The public option plan is unnecessary. It has been put forward, I’m convinced, by people who really want the government to take over all of health insurance.” Government takeover of health care. Raise taxes. More debt. You lie.

As I was watching the interview, I thought to myself, ”Wow this schmuck came dangerously close to being one heartbeat away from the presidency.”

Then it occurred to me: Joe Lieberman is the Left’s Sarah Palin.

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Scozzafava: Does Palin Even Know Who She’s Endorsing?

It’s a Grand Old Purging as moderate’s ouster spotlights Republican dysfunction

Since the GOP nominee dropped out of the race in New York's 23rd Congressional District amid pressure from conservative leaders, Dede Scozzafava has been swept into the national political conversation.

Since the GOP nominee dropped out of the race in New York's 23rd Congressional District amid pressure from conservative leaders, Dede Scozzafava has been swept into the national political conversation.

Gouverneur, N.Y. — Over Halloween weekend, Dede Scozzafava morphed from a rosy-cheeked Republican mom to a political figure of speech.

“My name’s a verb now,” she said.

A little-known state assemblywoman with moderate Republican views and a mouthful of a surname, Scozzafava’s bid for an open seat in New York’s 23rd Congressional District drew trash talk from conservative leaders hoping to purge her from the party, mash notes from White House-dispatched Democratic suitors that included Bill Clinton, and the unblinking gaze of political professionals fascinated by her role as the problem child for a dysfunctional Republican Party.

Even as she now hopes to return to her normal life of local politics, laundry and choir practice for next month’s big performance of Bach’s Christmas Cantatas, the political forces that swept her up have not entirely let her go. Last week, while watching a news show about the next sharply contested Senate Republican primary in Florida, her parents reported that one of the commentators asked whether the moderate was in peril of getting “Scozzafaved.”

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