There is some nonsense that got published recently in The Los Angeles Times that is remarkable only in the fact that it is difficult to discern if the op-ed is genuine or well-crafted satire. I shall not dignify the article other than to mention it and to say that it resurrects the misbegotten notion of a Sarah Palin run at the Presidency and also a line of thought that I have heard before: she is electable, in part, because she is attractive.
I remember back when the McCain campaign was foundering and Palin first hit the nation’s consciousness, various comments were circulating about how good she looks, even to the point of some remarks that Republican women looked better than Democratic women. I don’t know what had me more perplexed, that some were even going so far as to lump Ann Coulter in with the “attractive” meme or that people thought that attractiveness made any difference at all. These are, of course, the same people who would fall over themselves saying what a great leader Margaret Thatcher was. They are also the same ones who will make comments about Michelle Obama’s ugliness. The truth is that nobody is in a beauty contest here nor should they be; that is not what defines a great or even good leader. Even though nearly every Miss America contestant ever asked has wanted to see “world peace”, who wants to actually put any of them in charge of achieving it? There has to be more to a suitable leader than looks – a lot more.
If I was going to elect someone based on looks and leadership, I would gladly vote for Dennis Kucinich. Have you seen his wife? She is the kind of woman who causes one to ask, “how did a guy who looks like that land a woman who looks like that?!” He must have all the persuasive ability a head of state must possess to negotiate the best deals for his country. What a First Couple they would be! Let’s extend the silliness even further: how about George Clooney? He is consistently on the best-looking lists and is reasonably interested in politics. He might even get the country to rescind the 22nd Amendment!
But let’s get back to Palin. She is supposedly qualified because she called a corrupt administration corrupt and played hardball with the oil companies – not as an environmentalist would play hardball, but as someone trying to squeeze as much money out of them as possible – by raising taxes on their profits. In her own way, while she played politics in Alaska, she wanted to be “mavericky” like John McCain until Karl Rove got hold of him in 2000 in South Carolina and McCain has acted like a whipped pup ever since. Palin, for her part, has been less of a maverick and more a tool of the neo-cons and spews the party line even if she still can’t quite articulate just what the hell she’s talking about. But the bottom line is that she is, indeed, the “Half-Term Governor”: she quit on Alaska.
But if others want to jump on their bandwagon of bad ideas, I’ll play along and design a bumper sticker for ’em. I’m sure they’ll love it because it gets to the heart of what every red-blooded American Republican male is thinking, right? So here we go, the 2016 Sarah Palin for President campaign: