Palin vs Press Won't End Well – UPDATED

You know what? I don’t like game-players, I just don’t. I especially don’t like them in politics, which is why I like so few politicians, any more.

And it seems to me that Sarah Palin is going out of her way to play a game, here, and I can’t say I’m admiring it. I know some do. I know some feel that the press has treated Palin very badly, and so she’s entitled to treat them badly, too.

Well, the press has treated her badly, even hatefully and I’m the first one to say it. They savaged her mercilessly when she joined McCain’s campaign in 2008; they’ve subjected her to every media double-standard they could; they’ve called her names; they’ve gone after her kids; they’ve gone through her garbage, even when they couldn’t be bothered looking into, say, stories about John Edwards. They tried to blame her for the violent actions of a madman.

There is no doubt that the press — no matter how they try to spin it or deny it — has treated Sarah Palin with the utmost disdain and shabbiness. Right now, there are (supposedly) hundreds of reporters covering her, following her bus; we all know that there really isn’t much to cover right now, but they’re hoping for a flub.

Palin is ducking and dodging them, not telling them where she’s going; she’s playing cat-and-mouse. And some people like it, admire it; they’re diverted by it.

Well…Sorry…I’m not. I think what she’s doing now seems childish and spiteful, and frankly if I want to vote for childishness and spitefulness in 2012, I can vote for Barack Obama.

Palin is a Christian, and part of our Christian adventure — and it is admittedly a hard part of it, sometimes — is to respect the inherent human dignity in other people, even if (and here’s where the rubber meets the road for the Christian) those same people are incapable of respecting the inherent dignity in you. To make buffoons of the press by walking out the front door while they’re waiting out the back is one thing — that can, once in a while, even seem like a merry, Beatlesque trick — to put reporters in a position where they’re not sure where they’re heading, when they have equipment and travel considerations as well, becomes a bit more risky. Lugging equipment into unplanned territory can invite real problems and even be dangerous. Palin — Chris Matthews’ opinion to the contrary — is not stupid. She is savvy enough to know all of this. And she is Christian enough to know that playing fast-and-lose with people, especially when it’s just to get a little of your own, back, is a step too far. And it’s small.

Palin has gone through the trouble of getting her big bus going; she’s touring and meeting people (including “the Donald” gag me) — all of that is meant to attract attention, get people talking, generate a buzz, and a bit of mystery; “is she or isn’t she”? If you are doing all of that work to direct the cameras your way, only to slap at the press for trying to focus, then you’re behaving like a tease. There’s a line, and for me Sarah Palin is coming close to crossing it.

Nobody likes a tease. Including, I think, voters.

So, no, I don’t find this latest Palin escapade all that endearing. In fact, were I an editor in the mainstream press, I’d pull my reporters off the story of her latest bus tour, and say “adios.” The woman doesn’t want press coverage, don’t give her press coverage. Period.

This battle between Palin and the press is not going to end well. The media are not going to stop being who and what they are — expedient, exploitative, energetic and constantly hungry, and often biased, sometimes savagely so. So Palin — whether she likes it or not, whether her fans like it or not — is going to have to take the high road, before someone gets hurt.

She’s a natural with many strengths, but she is either getting some very bad advice, right now, or Sarah Palin simply hasn’t yet learned how to rise above, with grace.

We need grace in our leadership. It sucks not having it now. I want it back.

Sorry, but do you want a sensation and a celebrity or do you want a president? This is not presidential behavior.

UPDATE:
My dear Blogfather
Ed Morrissey disagrees with me, as does Allahpundit, and I have gotten a couple of emails and tweets from folks sayinig this is just Palin’s way of “retraining the media to treat her right.”

Well, Okay. If that’s what she’s doing, I’ve never had a problem admitting I’m wrong, but are you sure? We’ll have to watch.

If she succeeds at it, I’ll take back every word I wrote. In fact, if she does manage to “retrain the press” — REALLY does it, not some temporary measure — I’ll even vote for her. How’s that?

UPDATE II:
NEVER SAY I AM NOT FAIR:
I believe Michelle Malkin makes some excellent points in this piece, but note that Palin has essentially admitted she’s that she’s playing a game. The press is stupid enough to be played. But I still don’t know if I like it — from the point of view of a Christian, I don’t know if I like it. Manipulation is still manipulation. As I said in the update above, we’ll see. I don’t mind being wrong. This might be the most brilliant move a pol every played on the press. But I am not ready to say that. And to all of you folks who simply can’t stand that I don’t immediately support every move Palin makes, and who are calling me a “hater” please read the links. I defend her — quite vociferously — and praise her more than you seem to realize.

UPDATE III:
THIS, of course is just stupid

UPDATE IV: The Rickster disagrees with me. Not the first time! :-)

UPDATE V: Andrew Malcolm is persuasive!

About Elizabeth Scalia
  • Lisa

    I think it’s hysterical.

    Nothing Sarah Palin could do short of becoming a Democrat would “end well” with the press. They despise her.

    Who *needs* them?

  • http://defend-us-in-battle.blogspot.com Joe

    I whole-heartedly disagree with your assessment. I also think that you are a “step too far” with your paragraph regarding the “Christianity” of this whole situation.

    I don’t think it is wrong that you disagree with her doing this, but I really don’t think it is un-Christian, and your post comes off heavily insinuating that.

    Also to put the onus on Palin for creating “danger” is completely absurd. Sure Palin planned this trip, and yes she knows the media will cover it… but the media has free will. The fact we “know” it is dangerous means that the media is doing SOMETHING wrong, and they themselves are to blame.

    What would be the high road here?

  • Terrye

    I agree. It is ridiculous for Sarah Palin to complain about the press while she is doing everything she can to get their attention. Right now it looks as if they deserve each other. This is more Entertainment Tonight than politics and I am growing weary of the never ending soap opera.

    I think her most devoted followers will love what ever she does. But then again, more and more they treat other candidates and potential candidates much the same way they accuse the media of treating Palin. The hostility is not only for the press, it is for the socalled elite, it is for anyone is not one of them. I know this is an over generalization, but since I had a Palinista tell me to go to Hell because I said I thought Mitch Daniels had a better record than Sarah Palin I am just getting a tad fed up with all of it.

    And I am not some liberal either.

  • Terrye

    Joe:

    The high road would be to either just do her tour like a regular human being who does not want to be pestered by the press…or give them access. Right now she is using them and she is letting them use her. She gets exposure and they get ratings. Until of course she pushes it too far. Personally, I think it is silly.

    We have so many real problems to deal with and what do we get? Spectacle.

    The other day at the Rolling Thunder gathering Palin managed to upset a lot of the people there who did not want to be political..they did not want to endorse any candidate..and then there was the usual drama until she got permission to go along with someone on the bike of the bike for a photo op…but before that there was the drama, the soap opera, the Rolling Thunder guys who liked her vs the Rolling Thunder guys saying snotty things about her to a Washington Post reporter…and on and on.

    It is self promotion plain and simple and she is using the media to do it.

  • http://defend-us-in-battle.blogspot.com Joe

    Terrye:

    First – Why is that the “high” road? Again, she isn’t an official candidate for anything. If she WAS, I would agree whole-heartedly. This is a way for her to “earn” media for herself. I think this is an important distinction.

    Second – If a “public” persona is always self-promoting, and in your eyes wrong, then a President should never do anything “Non-Political” in nature. That means no commencement speeches or the like. I don’t think she has to steer clear of such things. In fact, I would argue that her critics are those that don’t like her. I think it would serve all of us a little historical perspective to look into what some of our more “Favorite” politicians have done.

  • Mark

    I don’t think Sara Palin is playing a game in the grand sense as you imply (although she did employ a bit of fakery by leaving the Gettysburg Hotel before the press got wind). She’s simply testing the waters to determine her reception on the road and her ability to reinvent her image …

    FAce it, the left-wing media will never accept her because she committed the unforgivable sin – she did not abort her disabled child and she is still happy about that decision ..

  • http://a-star-of-hope.blogspot.com/2009/06/my-conversion-story.html JoAnna

    I agree with you 100%. I admire Sarah Palin in many ways, but I don’t think she has qualities essential to a President.

    I have a fond dream that someday I’ll be able to vote for a Presidential candidate who doesn’t strike me as the lesser of two evils. It hasn’t happened since I’ve been of age to vote. (I’m 30.) *sigh*

  • Terrye

    Joe:

    If she hates the media so much…why bother to earn it? We have had book tours, Reality TV shows, facebook, twitter and soon a documentary and right now a cross country tour in a big fat brightly colored bus..by someone who complains that the media will not leave her alone?

    I loved Palin when she first came on the scene..I was thrilled when McCain picked her. But after she quit her job as Governor because of the lawsuits she sat about making herself into a money making machine…that is not a sin. I am not saying it is..but if that is the kind of life she wants to lead she does not need to be complaining about how people will not leave her alone.

    And now we have to do the coy will she won’t she run business. I don’t think she can possibly win for the simple reason that a majority of Americans have a bad opinion of her.

    And as far as her critics simply being those that don’t like her…it should be remembered that Palin is putting herself out there..no one is making her do it and if she wants that kind of attention, it is inevitable that there will be critics..people will challenge her and her followers need to understand that it goes with the territory.

  • Mary T

    You are attributing motives to Sarah Palin that you have no way of verifying. Your speculation is not that different from the media.

  • Mary T

    Never mind. I’m not a mind reader either.

  • tempus fugit

    Please tell me why Palin – or anyone else – owes the jackals in the media a living?

    As a blogger you should know better than most that there are alternative ways to get your message out nowadays. The mainstream media are increasingly irrelevant and Sarah is smart enough to know this.

    And why would you engage with people you know very well are going to misrepresent and smear you, unless you’re a masochist.

  • Rob Crawford

    Not end well? What, is the press going to firebomb her church again?

    If anything, I think she’s simply treating the press as it deserves — as impediments to communication, not as a channel.

  • Rob Crawford

    “It is ridiculous for Sarah Palin to complain about the press while she is doing everything she can to get their attention.”

    Amazing how refusing to deal with the jackals is “doing everything she can to get their attention”.

  • nohype

    Palin is applying the lessons in Robert Axelrod’s The Evolution of Cooperation–be nice, but do not let others exploit you. It is precisely because the “media are not going to stop being who and what they are — expedient, exploitative, energetic and constantly hungry, and often biased” that what she is doing may work.

    Barack Obama does the same thing but in a different way. Bush did not do it, and the results were a disaster for him.

  • Zelsdorf Ragshaft III

    Palin is doing what she wants to do. I am sure she has her reasons. For someone to state she does not have Presidential qualities need only look at the current President to see what ever standard there was, was lowered significantly. I do not know the word Bush used, but I would not underestimate Palin. She has not lost many elections. I am not sure she would have lost against Obama last time. It was, after all, McCain’s campaign.

  • nohype

    I have noticed a lot of comments here and other places that look a lot like concern trolling–I used to love the woman, but then she did something that changed my mind and now there is no way the Republicans should nominate her. And because I used to love her, you should take my opinion seriously.

    She will eventually enter the race, and if she has the right stuff, she will be the nominee. If someone can beat her, she will not be the nominee. Though media pundits keep saying that she cannot win the nomination, the fact that the press is so eager to follow her on her road trip says that they actually do think she can win it. As with the Obama administration, pay no attention to what they say–watch what they do.

  • bellagrazi

    You are dead wrong. Sarah Palin is not responsible for the media, or their behavior. She is doing what she always does. She’s playing by her own rules. If that offends you, tune her out. I dare you.

    [I tune her out very easily, because I am not obsessive about her like the ones who hate her, on the left, and adore her on the right. I've always been agnostic on Palin. And no she's not responsible for the media's behavior. She's responsible for hers. And her behavior is deliberate. -admin]

  • Annie

    I just don’t get the whole Sarah Palin obsession. I don’t understand why some seem to despise her to an irrational degree…and why some are willing to forgive her sometimes quirky, bordering on bizarre behavior.

    Initially I liked her too…but I just can’t take her seriously anymore.
    I hope that she doesn’t run for president. She doesn’t have a snowball’s chance of winning.

  • Mandy P.

    I’ve got one foot in a different candidate’s camp right now, so I don’t exactly have a vested interest in defending Palin right now. That being said, from what I’ve read she’d been pretty clear leading up to this bus tour that she was giving the exclusive coverage to her PAC website and only giving a few interviews. She’s under contract with Fox so she can’t exactly give sit downs with anyone outside of that network.

    I guess they’re shocked that she did what she said she was going to do or something. If it makes the media-types so mad, then by all means, stop following her. If she’s going out of her way to bypass them, then maybe she really doesn’t want them trailing behind. Assume that’s the case and leave her alone. If she was fishing for attention I’d be willing to bet she’d be more cooperative with them if she thought they weren’t going to cover it.

    I guess I’m just baffled at how she’s basically given these people the finger and told them to take a hike and then proceeded to go about her business and it’s her fault that they continue to hound her.

  • JennyZ

    I totally agree.

  • kenneth

    As a public figure (not a person), Palin deserves no respect. She displays utter contempt for the ideal of elected office as a position of service and accountability. To her, it’s just a reality show game, an ego trip and marketing buzz about me, me me! She wants the adoration of her fans and feels entitled to be taken seriously as a candidate without having to lower herself to you know, actually articulate a policy or knowledge of any of the issues.

    She has nothing to bring to the table, no resume which even remotely qualifies her for the job. She is a buffoon, as all populists are buffoons. All she has to trade on is a self-made persecution myth: because the press reveals her to be a fool (from her own words), it MUST be a conspiracy to crush the people’s great hero…

  • http://Joshuapundit.blogpot.com Rob Miller

    Sorry, but this is beyond a doubt one of the silliest and most vindictive things I’ve seen written re: Governor Palin.

    No one is FORCING the media jackals to over her,particularly CBS. They’re ACTING like paparazzi, and they always have where Sarah Palin and her family is concerned…and malignant ones with an agenda at that, in the pocket of Obama. All she’s doing is traveling and meeting people.

    She’s somehow obligated to give them her schedule and talk to them just because they’re essentially stalking her? Why?

    Not only that, but no one her mentions that as a Fox employee, she’s not allowed to give interviews to th elikes of CNN or CBS. It’s a standard contract item.

    Amazing that the media jackals would be whining about this rather than why Barack Obama is religiously keeping them out of the Dem fundraisers. On second thought, not so amazing at all.

    But the sort of petty criticism in the Anchoress’s article certainly is.

    Regards,
    Rob Miller

    [Really? Now the press is "stalking" her? Okay. -admin]

  • Mike

    I recall a good deal of John’s Gospel and the Acts recounting Our Lord and the Apostles beating hasty retreats from angry, rock-throwing Jewish mobs…

    …not to imply anything messianic or holy about Sarah, but historically nobody gives their enemies unlimited free shots…and those MSMers are unabashedly out to destroy her.

  • http://sailorette.blogspot.com Foxfier

    Oh, good grief.

    She’s “playing a game” by…um… not doing what the press wants to make her do?

    What’s she supposed to do, design her every move around “will there be media there?” Refuse to speak to them, even though they’ve shown themselves to be willing to simply make things up?

    Oh, I know the proper Christian response! Lock herself in her house and do what those attacking her family have demanded– become invisible. Yeah, that’s a great idea.

    Love how it would suddenly be just fine and A-OK on the “being Christian” meter if she’s successful at not being bullied around by a bunch of entitled brats who want her to make it easy to attack her and her family.

  • http://sailorette.blogspot.com Foxfier

    I’d heard that one of the talking heads was accusing her of being a road hazard by “forcing” the networks to send reporters following her bus; I never thought to see the same sort of ridiculous accusation dressed up and put on display with a cross around its neck.

    The folks in the press are responsible for their own actions. Trying to shift the blame over to their target is childish.

  • kenneth

    Part of the deal of being a credible candidate is being able to handle oneself under pressure and to field quesitons that can be both tough and fair and just sometimes ludicrous. If she can’t hack it with reporters, how long do you think she’d last, in seconds, dealing with the Russians, Congressional leaders who have vastly more power and experience than her, the Israelis, the Taliban or our “allies” like Pakistan? She’d be chum in the water.

  • The Duke

    Kenneth,

    By your standard, our current pResident is not a credible candidate. The toughest question he’s fielded is “How can you possibly be so awesome?, and he bristled at the fact that the reporter forgot the ‘totally’ before ‘awesome’.

    I doubt she’d curtsy to tinpot dictators and the Israelis liked her very much on her last visit.

    Admit it. She scares you.

  • Bender

    And some people like it, admire it; they’re diverted by it. Well…Sorry…I’m not. I think what she’s doing now seems childish and spiteful

    Yeah, well, the thing is, and what so many people do admire her for, is that she could give a rat’s ass what people think.

    She’s not here to please you. Sorry.

  • Bender

    So Palin — whether she likes it or not, whether her fans like it or not — is going to have to . . .

    You just don’t get it do you? No, she’s isn’t “going to have to . . .” She doesn’t have to do a damn thing.

    I know that all sorts of people want to tell her what she has to do and what she can’t do, but she’s not going to play that game. She’s not the one playing the games.

    You don’t like it? Then don’t vote for her — IF she decides to run. And frankly, I think she should run only when a LOT of people bend down and kiss her ass.

  • SCSoxFan

    Ms. Scalia, I think that you are too harsh on Palin over this. I think her attitude towards the press during this tour is simple — “You don’t like me, I don’t like you, and I have no obligation to follow the rules that you set and believe that everyone has to follow. If you want to cover this, fine. But I have no obligation to make it easy to do your job.” I find it remarkable that many of the political reporters covering this event have used tons of ink (or e-ink) to denigrate or distort her, her family, and her positions, yet feel she owes it to them to fully cooperate with their attempts to make her look bad in at all possible. That is not, in my view, childish or spiteful. She is treating them with the same level of respect that they treat her. And, Ms. Scalia, please, spare me the concern that these poor, mistreated reporters are being placed in danger by Palin not telling them her destinations in advance. It’s not like her bus is travelling 100 MPH down an interstate, weaving in and out of traffic like a police chase. And “unplanned territory?” C’mon — almost all of the destinations (at least so far) have been national historical sites. Hardly dangerous territory unable to handle national press. I am a fan and read your blog every day, but sometimes, your moderation just goes too far. Politics is conflict — over ideas, priorities, and policy. Being nice, accomodating, and compromising too often can get you run over. The national press has, for the most part, waged a propaganda war against Palin, one they initiated. For her not to use all weapons at her disposal, humor when possible, scorn where appropriate, would be foolish.

    And I have to admit that the scorn and condescension of people like Kenneth makes me rise to her defense far more aggressively than I might otherwise do so. “She displays utter contempt for the ideal of elected office as a position of service and accountability.” Really? You either have no idea, or choose to ignore, her entire record in Alaska. And refusing to deal with “serious” or substantive” issues? I’ve watched parts of the coverage of this trip and I’ve seen her answer questions on energy subsidies, foreign policy, how to handle the national debt, and Paul Ryan’s budget proposals. You don’t see those because your dislike of her is so strong you won’t bother to notice when she does answer these questions. Finally, you equate government experience with “qualifications” to be President. The two are hardly synonymous. Palin has as much experience in office as two of the better Presidents of the 20th Century — Theodore Roosevelt and Harry Truman. The office is more about vision and determination and the ability to get the public to go where you want to lead it than mastery of policy minutiae. Get over your intellectual snobbery.

  • lethargic

    Ditto Foxfier, Bender, and SCSoxFam.

    Gov. Palin owes nothing good to the LSM. She has the God-given freedom of all Americans to travel when and where she pleases within our fair land. She is using the New Media and direct contact to communicate with people, not a teleprompter before carefully screened audiences and kool-aid-drinking talking heads … good for her. This change in approach has been needed for a very long time.

    Will she run for President? Personally, I don’t really care. Even if she chooses not to run, her tour will allow her to speak upon and promote a wide variety of important topics, not least of which is the proper role of government, and to encourage people of the Heartland (no matter their geographic location) who have been suppressed and scorned for far too long. That in itself is an important task

    So she seems to be enjoying all the attention? For pity’s sake, she is an extreme extrovert and adventurer personality type. Let’s not have a bunch of INT’s judging her for that. It has nothing to do with anyone’s notion of “what would a Christian do?” Sheesh.

  • Jim S

    I wouldn’t mention the possibility of voting for Obama in 2012 even in jest (if that’s what iit is).

  • KT

    Ms Scalia,

    I feel you are being unnecessarily harsh. She is not responsible for or to the press, only her own conscience. You have no idea if she has prayed on this and is acting according to whatever message she may have received. We can not know what God’s plan is for someone else, only that person can determine and interpret what they feel is God’s direction.

    Perhaps you need to remember these words:
    Judge not lest you be judged.

    [And there's also, "by their fruits you shall know them." we can lay down scripture verses all day -- the point is, still if you look for attention, you can't then play games when you get it - admin]

  • J

    You are consistent in your negative reaction to Gov. Palin…..and that is all right. You just don’t like her and don’t trust her…..and that is all right.
    What I doubt about your reaction to her is that it is a thought out emotion. I believe that in your gut, you just don’t like her.
    Trying to make a rational argument, you fail.

    She is taking command of an enemies’ territory and, so far, is beating them at that game. As far as what is fitting for a potus candidate…..really, can we make that argument now? After electing the incompetent who now resides in the whitehouse? The bar has been set so low that it is hard to take seriously anyone who supported obama or the democrats.
    And that SHE is taking control from a sworn enemy…..I say that makes her someone to consider as potus. Let me hear her positions, from her mouth, and make my decisions. It is evident that she loves my country, and that sets her apart.

    [Did you actually READ the piece? Did you SEE all the links to articles I've written PRAISING her and DEFENDING her? How does that make me "consistent in a negative reaction"? If you'd READ my article then you'd know that I've said that IF this is in fact what she's doing, "retraining" the press, I'm willing to be wrong. And IF she manages to succeed, I'll vote for her. But yeah...I must just hate her, because there can't possibly EVER be anything to really criticize about her! I've said it before, and will say it again: Palinbots are as bad as Obamabots. Theh woman is not perfect, does not do everything just right. She's human; she's capable of error, just like the rest of us. -admin]

  • LisaB

    “I’ve always been agnostic on Palin.”

    Your post doesn’t give that impression.

    [Then READ THE LINKS. Everyone tells me not to "judge" Palin, but some are so quick to "judge" me on one post. I understood her value before most folks had even heard of her and I predicted McCain would choose her and I applauded that choice. I've defended her a lot, and I've praised her a lot. But I don't just fall in line, and I never think anyone is perfect or above criticism, including myself. As I said in my updates, if anyone cares to read them, I'm willing to be proved wrong; and if she succeeds in retraining the hyenas in the press, I'll vote for her. I've ALWAYS said this, though: I am agnostic on Palin, but it's always, always, always her passionate defenders who can't stand to hear the slightest criticism of her, that turn me off. I am watching one presidency forged on bots who will brook no criticism of their godling. I don't want a second. - admin]

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    I have to agree with an earlier poster; this is basically concern trolling.

    I also agree with another earlier poster, that the reason son many people dislike Sarah Palin isn’t because of anything she’s actually done, or said, but because she gave birth to a “defective” child, and because she threatens the presidency of the wonderful O in a way that Pawlenty, Romney, Giulani, etc., do not.

    Give that the press will hate Palin, no matter what she does or says, I think it’s actually wise of her to avoid them, for the moment.

    [But she clearly doesn't want to avoid them, Rob. You don't drive around in that bus and say "but I don't want attention." This is a game of chicken, and I am allergic to stunts. But I'm willing to watch and see; it might be the most brilliant "stunt" ever, and if it is productive, I'll admit it. -admin]

  • Elaine

    Honestly I think this is the challenge of the day. We know that conservatives for the most part do not get treated fairly by the press. I struggle with how to defend what I believe in when I am extremely upset about some of the hateful comments. I am just a grandma who very rarely puts my political views on facebook but every once in a while I will get dopey things like Bush was dumb in college and took basket weaving classes that is why his transcript looks okay and it just gets old. When I defended Bush I was in a round about way called a racist. I could not believe it. They started on Palin and one jerk called her a vicious name and I just didn’t respond because it seems like some folks are not willing to see any other way.
    How do I as a Christian fight back without being disrespectful to another is something I think about often. Whether Palin is being spiteful and un Christian I really don’t know. She is not responsible for the press safety and their equipment and all that. They were not invited along so for their safety the press should just leave her alone on her bus trip and then we can see if she is just enjoying her time with her family going to the historic sights or does she really wants the drama of the press which would not be a good thing. How do we fight back to an unfair press – I don’t know but I believe they have got to be challenged because it is hurting the country and real people.

    [It is, as you say, a difficult question. I have a hard time with the argument that "she is just on a bus trip to see America and doesn't want the drama..." when she's in a bus that is designed to attract as much attention as possible. It's really hard to reconcile "I'm just taking in the sights with my family" with "but I'm doing it in a bus calculated to make people wonder if I'm running for president" and then "and I'm not responsible for the press following the teaser I've thrown out." It's too much. I understand that she owes "nothing" to the press. But she owes something to God, and frankly to the American people who are being mercilessly played by one politician after another. I am willing to wait and see if she's got a miracle up her sleeve, and I hope she does. I'd love nothing better than to see the press learn manners and start to treat the GOP with LESS disdain (or the Dems with MORE disdain) and if she manages to pull that off...hey...I've already said it! -admin]

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    All politicians attempt to manipulate the press, in one way or another.

    The Wonderful O himself has certainly done so.

    Sarah’s way actually seems a bit more up front, and open, than most politico manipulations. As Elaine points out, the press’s equipment, safety, etc. is not her responsibility. If they insist on going after her—well, it’s their choice.

    Also, when the press is unfair, it does need to be taught a lesson.

    [You may be right. I would certainly dearly love to see them brought down a notch. -admin]

  • J

    My, my, my oh my. Guess I struck a sensitive area. Sorry you were offended. Off and on I have felt a, shall we say, negative tone coming from your writing. I did treat your opinion with respect. Unfortunately, you have diminished my regard for you greatly by resorting to calling names. You do not wish to engage in a discussion, all right. But really, you do need to stop calling people “bots” in order to be regarded as a possible person with an alternative argument.

    [I'm not offended; you struck no nerve. I just expect people who who say they've "respectfully" read the piece to access the provided links. And it doesn't bother me if you don't regard me "as a possible person" with an alternative argument, as it's clear you're not actually interested in alternate arguments, you just want to assume that anyone who doesn't immediately agree w/ Palin must be a hater. I'm quite fine with alternative arguments...in fact, I've been pretty clear that I'm willing to watch and have my mind changed. I just am allergic to stunts, and weary of people who don't actually read a thing jumping in and deciding that I am a hater. -admin]

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    By the way—does anybody besides me find the spectacle of the press, which hates, abhors and has slandered Palin in the past, following her desperately for news, like a flock of seagulls, in search of tasty trash? “Oh, she’s being so mean to us, not telling us where she’s going! She ought to tell us, so we can report on how terrible she is, and how her son Trig is: 1. A mindless vegetable; 2. Probably abused; 3. Was actually fathered by Gwaxxil II, Dark Lord of the Galaxy.”

    They hate her, yet they crave her attention.

    [As I've said before, she certainly IS in their heads. That's impossible not to see. -admin]

  • J

    Once again, so sorry you are obviously offended.

    [Not offended. You seem to want to believe I am. I'm not. You're quite welcome here. -admin]

  • reg

    the impression i got from this latest media thing is not that she’s playing a game but running her own obedience school.this bus tour thing is a test run for a campaign- formulation of a plan of how to handle the media, probably more on media control than how much support she has.
    If so then you’ll see her gradually start to reward reporters who are favourable or at least impartial, and deny access to those who are hostile. time will tell.

    also if she gave out an itinerary, SEIU et al would definitely be on hand to greet her.

    [That's certainly true. -admin]

  • jkm

    Interesting reactions. I tend to agree with what you’ve said about Mrs Palin and the press, but even if I disagreed I don’t think I could work up as much umbrage as I see here. This seems to be a repeat of the Fr Corapi combox, with only the subject’s name changed. What is it with these figures who must be worshiped unconditionally, or you’re Satan’s minion? (I agree that the President is on that list, too, in different quarters.) Respectfully questioning the actions of public figures is a noble, and very Christian, tradition–I hope we’re not losing it in our increasing polarization.

  • Elaine

    To the Anchoress: Wow, nice to hear from you. You are one of my top websites to visit.

    I do get a little squirmy with you saying that Palin “owes something to God” because only in our own hearts do we try and do what God is calling us to do. Maybe Palin is discerning God’s calling to her. I don’t know but it makes me uneasy because our relationship with God is so personal and only she can determine if she is being honest in her intentions with God.

    Yes, I agree with you that Palin definitely wants to be noticed and if her intentions are like she says to bring us back to the foundation of the country and she feels her mission is to do this with a big bus going to our historic sights with her family then that is good. I think we have gotten so jaded with our politicians that we don’t trust their intentions anymore.

    Maybe she really doesn’t know if she wants to run for President. I am going to believe her on that and let her enjoy the ride to the sights with her family. Maybe someday she will write a book on traveling to our national sights and getting back to our roots – who knows. Too bad the press is not focused on the beautiful historic sights and not Palin.

  • Old Fan

    I appreciate your honesty and agree with your assessment. It was looking positive in the beginning, attending the Rolling Thunder. Then slowly we see again, the revealing games, and the letdown.

    Mrs. Palin is playing a very obvious image game, all stuck on attention. The censorship aspect only adds to the concept of being weak and unable to handle the spotlight.

    The meeting with “the Donald” is a prime example of playing for attention and poor political judgment. This being some cheap Celebrity, a player on par with Mr. Bloomberg, who actually called GW Bush “evil”.

    Mrs. Palin’s comments offered mostly via her own PAC (raising funds for it) are the predictable cliches as well. The hostile obsessive ‘blame the partisan press’ comes across as juvenile, a sign of a lack of security. We all know they are biased, unfair, etc., but if you want to lead you have to show you are above it. The effort instead looks divisive – and the entire thing looks completely staged. Like the Alaskan Reality TV show which was not to be called a “reality tv show”, this is a political bus tour, not to be called a political bus tour.

    But the fashion is pushing her overtly now, as they just pushed fad after fad – even hyping Donald Trump recently. It is a sign the sound side – the conservative arena has grown to be a small fashionable click of emotion these days. It is sad to see. They have convinced many they need a Celebrity who fits the fashionable ideal. Ironically Sarah Palin’s record in Alaska is the opposite. Her early political career was an effort similar to the Maverick, with populist tax increases on Oil Companies and building Climate Panels.

    Mrs. Palin’s repeated references to herself via implications of being a “rebel” are concerning as well. They are obsessive and overtly repeated, often mired in generic cliches. They only increase the image of a lack of substance – hiding behind a “non conformist” approach, showing some bitterness towards honest criticism. It is all to say, “people don’t understand me, especially those rich elites in power circles”. This is a subtle version of the Democratic Party’s own ugly class warfare – far from a vision of “A Country for All”.

    Besides, this is a former VP Candidate for the Presidency with the GOP – chosen by the Beltway Celebrity John McCain, who fully embraced the most moderate Maverick Platforms. It is truly a stretch to see her play the outsider, and bash “political machines” now, when she enjoyed the big ride with a machine prior. It isn’t honest, but another gimmick, and would be dreadful to see her push the emotive 3rd party denial.

    After having an initial positive view, with some honest hopeful wishes, I grow concerned. Perhaps the biggest concern is how many of the passionate Palin supporters tend to offer such demeaning commentary for others, using Mrs. Palin as an excuse to bash perceived Candidates who aren’t quite accepted by the fashionable click. It is far from sound conservatism, and always tends to result in the most juvenile – vicious form of name calling. Just like that last Alaskan Primary, where we watched many vilify a GOP Senator in overt terms, which ended up just pushing away all. It all ends up being destructive and counter productive.

  • SCSoxFan

    Ms. Scalia, if I may, I’d like to counter a couple of points you’ve made several times in this post.

    On whether Palin is “gaming” the press or teasing the public, maybe I’m overly blinded to her charms ;), but I don’t think that’s what she’s doing. There are two things at play here. First, I truly do not believe she has made up her mind about whether it’s feasible, politically and logistically, for her to run (although I am more convinced that ever that she’d LIKE to run). A few reporters who have actually bother to, you know, dig into the story, have reported that this bus tour is TESTING both the logistics of a presidential run and how she would be received on the trail. Remember, she has no formal campaign organization. She has made it very clear on several occasions that she would not run a conventional campaign, but more of a “guerrilla” or “insurgent” campaign, low on the personnel and high on the tech. This is to see whether she could pull it off and whether her family could take the strain of a full year of this. She also has to see whether she has the opportunity, and ability, to reframe the narrative about her if she did decide to run. Again, this trip and the documentary coming out later this month will help her determine that. Now, having said all that, does she get a strong sense of satisfaction from watching the press fall all over themselves? Probably. But that is not the INTENT of this exercise. Just a pleasant side benefit.

    You’ve also written that you think she is not showing reporters the “inherent respect” that all people must be shown by a Christian, even if you don’t like each other. But, I think you are equating PERSONAL respect with PROFESSIONAL respect. If you watch Palin on this trip she has always been unfailingly polite to both reporters and spectators. She has never treated anyone rudely or been short or disrespectful. On the other hand, she has made it abundantly clear that she does NOT respect how political reporters do their jobs, especially in relation to her. And, can you blame her? Political reporters in this country have gotten used to candidates falling all over themselves to ingratiate themselves to them, and with campaigns prepackaging the daily “message” and “narrative.” She flat out isn’t going to do that. But, that is not disrespecting the PERSON.

  • Rhinestone Suderman

    Yes, Elaine, I get a bit squirmy about Palin “Owing something to God” too!

    She’s a politician, not the Mother Superior of a convent, nor someone who’se devoted solely to the religious life, or an ascetic lifestyle.

    As David Horowitz once said, politics is about “The art of the possible”, not about spirituality, nor perfection in this world. All politicians manipulate the press, to some extent or another. If you don’t like games or manipulation, then you avoid following politics altogether—nto a bad idea, really!–because that’s what they are.

    Also, considering the way the press has treated her, I think God will forgive her any slight infractions in her treatment of them, at this point.

    Oh, and Anchoress? It’s “Rhinestone”, not “Rob”!

    [Sorry, Rhinestone, pardner! -admin]

  • SCSoxFan

    I’ve also seen many comments from Palin fans both here and on other sites that I wish I had the power to apologize for. Many people personally identify with Palin, and that is one of her biggest political strengths. But, a good chunk internalize that identification to the point that they see any perceived attack or disrespect as a direct attack on THEM, personally. At the macro level, I agree that attacks on Palin for her education, her speech, family, etc. are basically disparagements of the middle class and their abilities. And I include myself in the middle class. But, I try not to take disrespect towards people like me as a direct attack on ME. Others cannot seem to make that distinction.

  • Ann

    “Be wise as a serpent, innocent as a dove”
    Outsmarting a bloated, lazy, biased, often vicious press is very Christian. We could use some of Palin’s gracious cunning in our foreign policy too. Hats off to her I say!

  • craig

    “part of our Christian adventure — and it is admittedly a hard part of it, sometimes — is to respect the inherent human dignity in other people”

    Granted: person to person, human dignity must be respected. But what dignity inheres in corporations (separate from the individuals who work for them), and what respect do Christians owe corporations?

    In this case, the MSM as corporate entities have chosen to implement a policy of hostility toward the right in general, and Palin in particular. It’s funny: we have spoken openly of “culture wars” in this country for thirty years, and yet most people never realize that the artillery salvos of the culture war are wire stories and broadcasts. Palin, with her broadcast experience, does; through stunts like this one (as well as Facebook, the reality show, etc.), she is experimenting with ways to render the MSM’s artillery ineffective.

    Primarily that means finding ways to frustrate the media’s attempts to mediate between Palin and the public. The Tea Party phenomenon has shown that the right’s base is spontaneous and self-organized, and that its principal attackers are astroturfed, paid, and “top-down” directed (SEIU, Soros, etc.). Spontaneity favors the right. Therefore it makes sense to employ OPSEC (operational security): don’t let the enemy anticipate or discover your plans.

    None of this means that we have to wish harm on the reporters following the Palin bus, or be unsympathetic to their professional and personal woes. All it means is that we should not be cowed by their “see what you made me do” excuses for the attacks they would have launched anyway.


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