I'm still stunned by the fact that the American people (by the look of the polls after the debate) have finally shucked the blindfold off their eyes and can see what is before them. Unlike the people who fell for Dubya's "Aw shucks" man of the people persona and the thinly veiled contempt of Dick Cheney for anyone who isn't a rich, white, Conservative Republican villain like himself, the American public saw the Sarah Palin I saw a month ago. The one to be afraid of. Not to mention the chauvinist who forced her upon the public.
Don't get me wrong...in many ways, Sarah Palin stopped the bleeding (her own, not McCain's). But overall, here is the best word I can use to describe her debate performance. She was "chipper". Someone incoherent, highly prone to the sound bite, marching to the beat of her well-instructed own persona, she was "chipper".
Although there are many moments... the powers of the Vice Presidency, the movement of the embassy to Jerusalem, the "shout out" to her brother's 3rd grade classroom, the response about oil and gas to Gwen Ifill's question about the bankruptcy courts, the "raise the white flag of surrender" posturing, the callous indifference to an emotional moment for Biden... oh, the list goes on, here, in her exact words, are the phrases with which she described the negative to the conventional wisdom about her lack of experience (yes, she really, really said this! Lynne's remarks in yellow).
"My experience as an executive will be put to good use as a mayor and business owner and oil and gas regulator and then as governor of a huge state, a huge energy producing state that is accounting for much progress towards getting our nation energy independence and that's extremely important. (one, incoherent sentence that goes from future to past tense).
But it wasn't just that experience tapped into, it was my connection to the heartland of America. Being a mom, one very concerned about a son in the war, about a special needs child, about kids heading off to college, how are we going to pay those tuition bills? About times and Todd and our marriage in our past where we didn't have health insurance and we know what other Americans are going through as they sit around the kitchen table and try to figure out how are they going to pay out-of-pocket for health care? We've been there also so that connection was important. (No comment other than, yes, Sarah, we're all so sure you are one of us.)
But even more important is that world view that I share with John McCain. That world view that says that America is a nation of exceptionalism. (I cannot discuss the dangers of people who espouse this particular concept of exceptionalism. Perhaps in a future post. Not far from the concept of the view of Hitler on the master race, however.) And we are to be that shining city on a hill, as President Reagan so beautifully said, that we are a beacon of hope and that we are unapologetic here. (Who is not apologetic? I apologize for the torture, for invading a country in a war we had no business getting in to, for tapping the phones of ordinary citizens, for deporting as many people as we could with Muslim surnames or Muslim countries of origin, for forsaking those poor people in New Orleans, for out-Catroing Castro on his own island with the Gulag that is Gitmo, for running roughshod over our own Constitution...)We are not perfect as a nation. But together, we represent a perfect ideal. And that is democracy and tolerance and freedom and equal rights. Those things that we stand for that can be put to good use as a force for good in this world.
John McCain and I share that. You combine all that with being a team with the only track record of making a really, a difference in where we've been and reforming, (completely incoherent)that's a good team, it's a good ticket.
She takes your breath away.
But, she holds her own with the venerable Frances McDormand: