Mark Steyn has an interesting take on Sarah Palin’s resignation as Alaska’s governor. His last two paragraphs has some very good points:
Most of those who sneer at Sarah Palin have no desire to live her life. But why not try to – what’s the word? – “empathize”? If you like Wasilla and hunting and snowmachining and moose stew and politics, is the last worth giving up everything else in the hopes that one day David Letterman and Maureen Dowd might decide Trig and Bristol and the rest are sufficiently non-risible to enable you to prosper in their world? And, putting aside the odds, would you really like to be the person you’d have to turn into under that scenario?
National office will dwindle down to the unhealthily singleminded (Clinton, Obama), the timeserving emirs of Incumbistan (Biden, McCain) and dynastic heirs (Bush). Our loss.
I have never been very critical of Sarah Palin. In fact, I haven’t said much about her on The Moderate Voice or anywhere else. One reason is that I like her. I like her “regular-ness”. Whereas President Obama acts like, talks like, and carries himself like university professor (some would say the “cool” professor and I don’t have a problem with that), Palin is the mom on the PTA. Especially here in Conservative Country (suburban/rural Georgia). She reminds me so much of the women I volunteered with (and respect) on the PTA (Parent-Teacher Association). The conversations I had with those women were funny, frank, lovingly ignorant sometimes, and above all… REAL. I felt that “real” connection with Sarah Palin during her presidential campaign season. Yes, I criticized various things she said on the campaign trail (I really hated the “pal around with terrorists” line) but I never hated her. And probably never will.
So when Mark Steyn makes the point that Sarah Palin left the spotlight to basically be true to herself, I can believe it and I have no problem with it. I ask myself at times could I run for a major political office and if I won, could I deal with the scrutiny. Well I don’t think I would get that far since my family and extended family has linkages to the Black Panthers, Nation Of Islam, and other black nationalists groups (I shudder at what blogs and pundits would say and write about me since I don’t do “distancing” and “disowning” regarding this). But if this was an alternate universe and those things were overlooked (what a fantasy), and I actually became a governor, could I be me? I don’t think I could and that’s enough for me to not want the job.
The regular folk need not apply for major political/government office in our current political environment. Our “regular-ness” is a liability in current major American politics. I know some of you will tell me that you had no problem with Palin’s “regular-ness”; you have a problem with her ignorance and experience. Yes, Sarah Palin was ignorant on certain issues and lacked political savvy during the presidential campaign. But so was then presidential candidate Barack Obama. But Barack Obama was a former constitutional law professor (“lawyer”). He was able to maneuver his way through his ignorance on certain “things” with his professorial ways and overall smooth savvy. But Palin is a regular gal. And many of us regular folks “put it out there and see where it sticks and roll with it”. Maybe we should have said it better. Maybe we should have clarified. Maybe we shouldn’t have said it at all. But that’s the way it goes.
Am I saying that we should only elect regular “Joes and Janes” to political office? No I’m not. But the treatment of Sarah Palin in the media (MSM and Internet) has been deplorable at times. She’s had her “regular-ness” attacked. Not her policies on average. But her “regular-ness”. And that’s quite depressing and infuriating. So I truly believe she wants out of public spotlight and retreat into the private sector. Maybe become a “talking head”/pundit? She will be popular with a certain segments of America (and probably make a nice amount of loot in the process). So I don’t feel sorry for Sarah Palin. She has a lucrative and exciting future ahead. At least in the private sector, you can be you most of the time and still accomplish many, many things.
And when I say “regular folk”, it describes the average American and the way they live their lives. The majority of us are “regular folk” in that we engage in very similar behaviors of the not very wealthy “working class”.
UPDATE: A friend of mine just sent me an e-mail after reading this post of mine:
C’mon T. She’s leaving office because of a brewing scandal. Yeah, she may be a regular gal but she’s a scandalous regular gal!
If there is a scandal a-brewing, so be it. Doesn’t change the fact that she’s a regular gal. In fact, if there is a scandal tied to this resignation, I’ll bet the farm she’s going to get eviscerated and wholly obliterated in the press (MSM and Internet) with flair because of her “regular-ness”. Mark Sanford will be thanking the stars he’s not Sarah Palin.
I’m not complex. Don’t have time for all that. And all that complex stuff bad for the stomach. Just color me simple and plain with a twist.