More Liberal Media

A member of the mainstream media reflects on Sarah Palin‘s resignation.  In her own words:

What she is, is a seemingly very nice middle-class girl with ambition, appetite and no sense of personal limits.

She’s not Ivy League, that’s why her rise has been thwarted! She represented the democratic ideal that you don’t have to go to Harvard or Brown to prosper, and her fall represents a failure of egalitarianism.” This comes from intellectuals too. They need to be told something. Ronald Reagan went to Eureka College. Richard Nixon went to Whittier College, Joe Biden to the University of Delaware. Sarah Palin graduated in the end from the University of Idaho, a school that happily notes on its Web site that it’s included in U.S. News & World Report’s top national schools survey. They need to be told, too, that the first Republican president was named “Abe,” and he went to Princeton and got a Fulbright. Oh wait, he was an impoverished backwoods autodidact!

America doesn’t need Sarah Palin to prove it was, and is, a nation of unprecedented fluidity. Her rise and seeming fall do nothing to prove or refute this.

The elites hate her.” The elites made her. It was the elites of the party, the McCain campaign and the conservative media that picked her and pushed her. The base barely knew who she was. It was the elites, from party operatives to public intellectuals, who advanced her and attacked those who said she lacked heft. She is a complete elite confection. She might as well have been a bonbon.

She makes the Republican Party look inclusive.” She makes the party look stupid, a party of the easily manipulated.

She shows our ingenuous interest in all classes.” She shows your cynicism.

Now she can prepare herself for higher office by studying up, reading in, boning up on the issues.” Mrs. Palin’s supporters have been ordering her to spend the next two years reflecting and pondering. But she is a ponder-free zone. She can memorize the names of the presidents of Pakistan, but she is not going to be able to know how to think about Pakistan. Why do her supporters not see this? Maybe they think “not thoughtful” is a working-class trope!

The media did her in.” Her lack of any appropriate modesty did her in. Actually, it’s arguable that membership in the self-esteem generation harmed her. For 30 years the self-esteem movement told the young they’re perfect in every way. It’s yielding something new in history: an entire generation with no proper sense of inadequacy.

Turning to others means the media won!” No, it means they lose. What the mainstream media wants is not to kill her but to keep her story going forever. She hurts, as they say, the Republican brand, with her mess and her rhetorical jabberwocky and her careless causing of division. Really, she is the most careless sower of discord since George W. Bush, who fractured the party and the movement that made him. Why wouldn’t the media want to keep that going?

That was written by Peggy Noonan for the Wall Street Journal. [1]  That’s not exactly a liberal publication, nor is Peggy Noonan a liberal journalist.  She was a special assistant to Ronald Reagan and a speechwriter for the first George Bush.  I don’t agree with much of her political opinions, but she is smart and articulate… and she is dead right about Sarah Palin.  The Republicans could use more like her.

As a side reference to yesterday’s post, it’s interesting how she references “the mainstream media” as though she wasn’t a part of it.  More evidence of how that idiom is so ingrained in the conservative mind.

[1] http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124716984620819351.html

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