Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Parker Patronizes Palin's Endorsements and Kitchen Table Politics

Kathleen Parker has decided to join in her fellow GOP Elitists, Peggy Noonan and Michael Gerson, in placing all responsibility for any Republican losses in last week's Mid-term elections on Governor Palin. Of course, the Elite probably retroactively blame Governor Palin for Reagan losing Minnesota in 1984 as well. Rumor has it as well that the Elite are in contact with Alaskan geologists to re-name the location of the massive 1964 Alaskan earthquake--Sarah Palin's fault-- as her family's move to Alaska when she was an infant was obviously the reason for the devastation.

Rather than a hit piece filled with anonymous sources, Parker's editorial uses patronizing, insulting phrases to characterize Governor Palin and her endorsements. Parker calls Governor Palin "She to Whom Respect Must Be Paid", "princess party girl", and "an attractive nuisance", then goes on to refer to her endorsements as "gambles" and her endorsed candidates as "anointed ones".

Parker then parrots the fallacy from Congressman Bachus regarding the timing of Governor Palin's endorsement of Sharron Angle:
Other notable lost seats in states where the establishment candidate might have won include Nevada, where Harry Reid defeated Tea Party pick Sharron Angle. Conventional wisdom among political veterans is that Angle's primary opponent, Sue Lowden, would have bested Reid by 15 points.
Governor Palin, as Ian pointed out earlier this week, did not endorse Sharron Angle until after the primary, so Governor Palin's endorsement had no effect on the GOP candidate selection in Nevada. Par for the course, Parker also trashes Governor Palin's endorsements of Christine O'Donnell and Joe Miller because of course in the eyes of the Establishment, it's better to have Senators who cling to power rather than those who cling to principle.

Beyond the discussion of the recent midterm elections, Parker drags out the well worn "stupid" meme when it comes to Governor Palin:
Cutting government spending may be the central mantra of the Tea Party and, increasingly, of Palin. She recently wrote against the QE2 - "quantitative easing" - whereby the Federal Reserve will dump $600 billion in freshly minted dollars into circulation in hopes of revving the economy. Doubtless, this inspired critique evolved from Palin's long years poring over the Economist.
Parker does not dispute Governor Palin's discussion of this poor plan tosupposedly help the economy. She only uses it to take a gratuitous slap at Governor Palin. Ironically, Parker's insult of Governor Palin's supposed illiteracy comes just a day after Governor Palin called out Parker's fellow "journalists" for not even reading their own newspaper. What Parker cannot seem to grasp is that Governor Palin has an uncanny ability to distill complex public policy into practical kitchen table politics. Policy is crafted by politicians and staffers in Washington, but the heavy handed effects of such policies are felt by families across the country sitting at their kitchen table trying to balance their monthly budgets. As Governor Palin pointed out in her recent speech, the potential effects of QE2 could be an increase in food prices:
All this pump priming will come at a serious price. And I mean that literally: everyone who ever goes out shopping for groceries knows that prices have risen significantly over the past year or so.
These Americans who have a grasp of what has happened to grocery prices do not include President Obama. In September, President Obama tried to purchase four apples for a dollar during a trip to Philadelphia thinking that was sufficient to cover the cost.Obviously the repercussions of quantitative easing did not factor into the Obama administration decision to purchase these bonds.

The greater issue is that politician need to be able to both understand and articulate complex policy issues to the American people in a way that is meaningful to them. Americans may understand the process of trading carbon credits, but what they are really concerned with is how cap and tax will impact their energy bills. They may understand all the levels of production a value added tax has an additional "charge", but what they're really concerned with is how this tax may increase the price of goods. The same can be said of QE2. Parker and her friends patronize this commonsense approach to policy discussion, but the American deal with policy with their checkbooks, not with pie charts and bar graphs.

Parker closes her piece by trotting out the Palin is "dangerous" meme:
Watching Palin drop foreign policy and economic nuggets into the twitterverse confirms that the real agenda for Palin is President Palin, and therein lies fresh terror for Republicans. She's too powerful to ignore, and too (fill-in-the-blank) to take seriously.

She is - in a word yet again whispered rather than uttered - "Dangerous."

Not only would Palin the presidential candidate drive away other Republican candidates, but she would most certainly lose a national election. Thus, the GOP finds itself in a pickle: How to shed itself of this attractive nuisance?
In response to a Politico hit piece a couple of weeks ago where an anonymous source called a potential Palin presidential nomination a "disaster", I wrote:
Rather than being fearful for the effects of the Obama agenda, the GOP Establishment appears to have a greater fear of Palin nomination and the "wrath" of "enthralled" Palin supporters. The GOP Establishment deems that nominating Governor Palin in 2012 would spell disaster. However, for whom would a Palin nomination be a disaster? The GOP Establishment? One of the GOP boys: Romney, Huckabee, Pawlenty, Gingrich, Thune, Barbour, Daniels? President Obama?
The same message applies. Be it Kathleen Parker or an anonymous source, the Elites see Governor Palin as a disaster and a danger, but Governor Palin is only disastrous and dangerous to the GOP Establishment and to President Obama. Some may say that addressing the likes of Parker and friends isn't worth the blog space, but it has become increasingly clear,especially now that the 2010 Midterms are over, that there continues to be a battle for the Republican Party in general and the 2012 Presidential nomination specifically. The likes of Parker, Noonan, and Gerson may claim that the Establishment must be embraced and the Tea Party shunned and that commonsense language eschewed for hundred dollar words. However, the ultimate battle is against the Left. For conservatives and Republicans, that battle needs to be waged not by those who choose to endorse candidates only when it's politically safe or those who choose to comment on an issue only when loss of political capital is likely to be minimal. Governor Palin has repeatedly led on endorsing candidates, not for the sake of political expediency but for the sake of political principle. She has risked, but not lost, political capital when she has taken the lead on the issues of Obamacare, quantitative easing, and a whole slew of other issues. Parker claims the GOP can't be led by Governor Palin, but by all accounts, she is one of the few who has been willing to lead.

UPDATE: Ironically, in Parker's drivel, she pulls a page from the Couric playbook and tries to take a smack at Governor Palin's reading choices by mentioning the Economist. Governor Palin is front and center on the latest edition of the Economist leading the Republican charge on Washington:

Crossposted here.

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