Thursday, September 04, 2008

The avenging ghost 

I think the most astonishing episode of the entire Sarah Palin drama happened just a few hours before her speech, when McCain's people actually went out of their way to publicize a National Enquirer story about an affair Palin supposedly had with her husband's business partner.

Why would sane people do this? It only makes you want to read the whole story and it gives you the strange sense that the Enquirer story might somehow be accurate. And yet, there they are, actually piling more garbage onto the woman whom they are supposedly defending from an unfair barrage of media elitism and sexism.

I suppose McCain's new idea is to batter and disgrace Palin so thoroughly, to make her such a complete victim, that she is transformed into something pure and innocent and holy. Kind of like Lacy Peterson, but still alive, or like Terri Schiavo, but conscious, or like Elizabeth Smart, but older and not so Mormon-y.

Then she delivered her convention speech. I watched it online. The delegates in the XCel Energy Center clearly love them some pretty white victim. And I'm sure very casual viewers felt that she was a good speaker (I agree) and a super-terrific nice mom who is just folks. I don't know if this impression will actually win over allegedly undecided voters, though.

I also have no idea whether this will stop, slow or stall all the questions of her record and background. My feeling is that prominent news items about her book-banning, pork-grubbing, secessionist, Trooper-gating ways will continue in direct proportion to the amount of money the media have invested in sending people to Alaksa to investigate.

What I do feel certain about is that the Republicans have happily turned Sarah Palin into another white female victim who will now rise from the grave to denounce her supposed murderers -- "Obama," "liberals," "Washington elite," "San Francisco," etc. It's her status as white female victim that, in our culture today, allows her the pleasure of endless gleeful outrage.

Way to fight sexism, GOP!


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