It's done! The wall is coming down! Freedom! Victory! After six long, long years, we can now all agree and shout out in public: "Yes, Sarah Palin is an idiot!"
A few days ago, Sarah Palin was still a fairly respected member of the Republican establishment, although to some of us the cracks in the wall were already obvious. But now, FREEDOM! Today, a former huge Palin-supporter, Matt Lewis, is finally able to breathe the air of liberty, and can openly admit, without the fear of being viciously slaughtered by his peers: "You Betcha I Was Wrong About Sarah Palin"...!
YES! What joy! What relief! The world will never be the same again.
Yesterday, the eternal concrete-head Sarah Palin tried to stem herself against the tide, when she appeared on Hannity, and furiously defended herself. But even Hannity knew that the show is over. Watch for yourself, it is well worth it:
Sean, don't hold back! Tell us what you really think. You can do it, even without a degree! :-)
So much has been said about all this already, not only in the comments of our last post, but everywhere on the internet. "Secretly", virtually everybody knew that she is an idiot, but in public, it was still hard to mention this as a conservative, as Matt Lewis admits:
Palin has contributed to this phenomenon by playing the victim card, engaging in identity politics, co-opting some of the cruder pop-culture references, and conflating redneck lowbrow culture with philosophical conservatism.
And this makes me wonder if I might have contributed to this by boosting her—and by publicly chastising her conservative critics.
My harshest criticism was directed at conservative writers whom (I felt) prematurely attacked her during the months of September and October in the 2008 presidential campaign—and possibly even contributed to her radicalization. (In my mind, Palin changed after the 2008 loss, a shift that correlates closely with the election of Obama and the rise of the Tea Party.)
But you could argue that the conservatives who went after Palin back in ’08 have now been vindicated—regardless of their motivation. And my counterfactual argument (that Palin might have turned out better had everyone had cut her some slack in 2008) feels increasingly tenuous.
Is it possible that Kathleen Parker saw something I didn’t when she attacked Palin? I saw it as strangling the conservative baby in the crib; Parker probably saw it as snuffing out a monster.
Such is the plight of a writer; I got some stuff right, and my position was justifiable at the time, but in hindsight I regret contributing to the premature deification of Sarah Palin.
Well, Matt Lewis, writing such an article is a big step, however, there are still some things to clarify, once and for all.
You also write:
But something happened on the way to Des Moines. I suspect the most vicious attacks (especially the “Trig Truther” stuff) radicalized her and embittered her, but I also suspect she also took the easy way out.
OK, wait a second, Matt. Yes, we, amongst some others, are the "Trig Truthers", a label that we did not choose. We have been writing posts about the topic of Sarah Palin's pregnancy for years. However, we did not do this in order to be "vicious." We did this because we knew with 100% certainty already since 2009 that it is a true fact that Sarah Palin faked her pregnancy with Trig.
Matt, this is also not a big secret in Alaska. You would be surprised how many people know about this, especially within political circles. You would be surprised how many Republicans in Alaska know about this. Trust me, I have spoken to some of them. You, Matt, obviously have not. Maybe it should be your responsibility as a serious journalist to do this at some point.
Also, your assumption is totally wrong. The accusations about her faked pregnancy with Trig, the "Trig Truther stuff", as you call it, did not happen "on the way." These allegations long existed in Alaska, they started when Sarah Palin was still "pregnant"...! Also, Sarah Palin knew about "the rumours" right from the beginning.
In my post from February 19, 2011, I quoted from an email by Sarah Palin which was included in the leaked transcript of the book by Frank Bailey, a book which was appropriately called "Blind Allegiance to Sarah Palin". The email dated from April 2, 2008 - which was 16 days before Trig was officially born:
Yeah- Brsitol (sic) just called and heard the rumors too, but this time is was from Wasilla High kids who heard that I'm not really pg, but she is, and I'll be taking/raising the baby she's supposedly having next month. She's ticked, but made light of it with, "They think I'm pregnant just because I have huge boobs?" Told her to just tell those rumormongers that they're invited to peer at my stretch marks, that'll prove who's really pg.
Yeah, right, the "stretch marks" will prove who is really pregnant! Apparently, no birth certificate is needed! No surprise, because Sarah Palin is unable to provide a birth certificate for Trig, although she simply lied about having provided one in a radio interview from December 2009, and in the same interview Palin had the audacity to say that Obama's birth certificate in contrast would be "a fair question."
In addition, I would like to refer you to the interview with veteran Alaska journalist Michael Carey from September 2, 2008, in which he explains that the "story" about Sarah Palin's faked pregnancy "has been around for quite a while":
Sarah Palin is not a victim of the "Trig Truthers." Sarah Palin is a victim of her continuous inability to accept reality. The exact reason for Sarah Palin's failure to acknowledge reality is unknown.
But in the end, the reason is also not important. What is more important, and more shocking, is the fact that over the course of more than six years, seemingly intelligent people supported her, and enabled her, and defended her against others who were simply "pointing out the obvious."
There would be much more to say about Sarah Palin, and the lasting damage she has done to the political culture in the USA. The first steps are made to undo some of the mistakes which were made in the past. But there is still a long way to go, until things are "back to normal." Also, Sarah Palin has inspired other politicians, like Joni Ernst, who campaigned together with Sarah Palin in 2014, and who is basically "Sarah Palin 2.0." It remains to be seen whether this "model" has a future.
So for today, let's rejoice and breathe the air of freedom. As a reminder of the past, here are some old photos I took myself a long time ago, together with some genuine radical left-wing Berlin artwork (LOL!).
I still remember this feeling when the wall came down. It was wonderful! The fake reality suddenly vanished, it was beautiful. Suddenly people in East-Germany could say what they always knew: It was all wrong, it was just a big mistake, we knew it for years, but were afraid to say it loud.
Say it loud, and say it proud: Yes, Sarah Palin is an idiot!
Click to enlarge: