I hope Joe Scarborough likes getting e-mails, because his Politico column on Sarah Palin
is sure to provoke some angry ones.
Here are a few immediate thoughts on the controversial column:
- Scarborough refers to Palin as "a reality show star," but is she really
? Now that we have all seen her TLC program, "Sarah Palin's Alaska," I'm not so sure that is a fair classification for it. When people hear the term "reality show," they likely think of "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" or "The Osbournes." Calling "SPA" a reality show is not entirely inappropriate, but I would argue that it is also a documentary/travelogue
- Palin made a huge tactical mistake by comparing herself to Reagan
. By the same token, I can't help but think that Peggy Noonan (and others) have intentionally seized on, and attacked, her inartful comments about a man who has become an icon.
- Interestingly, Palin's Reagan gaffe occurred while attempting to defend herself against a criticism lodged by Karl Rove that she was a reality star.
- In attempting to prove she was like Reagan, Palin may have instead done the opposite. Reagan, I think, would have laughed off Rove's criticism -- or (as I've argued in the past
when Palin has gone on the attack) sent out a surrogate to do the attacking. He wouldn't have thought it fitting for someone of his stature to attack a staffer. Palin seems unable to ignore such criticism, and certainly is not interested in rising above the din. This was recently the case regarding comments made by Barbara Bush
, who, after all, is an old woman. Others have noted that with age, we tend to lose the ability (or desire) to filter our words. Rather than fire back at the Bushes, calling them "blue bloods"
(which, of course, they are
), couldn't Palin have instead graciously brushed it off? Wouldn't outclassing the Bushes have been the best revenge?
- While I'm not sure Scarborough's classification of Palin's TV show is fair, and while I think the criticism over Palin comparing herself to Reagan was overblown, I do think Scarborough's main thesis -- that Palin may not be ready for prime time -- deserves consideration. Anyone running for president (and she is considering it) deserves such scrutiny. Is she serious enough
? Does she have the intellectual heft or gravitas? These are all fair questions.
Let the e-mails begin!