Thursday, August 26, 2010

Palin's Political Genius and 2012

Of 30 endorsements in elections held to date, Sarah Palin has picked winners in 20 of the political contests. That's a 66% win rate for candidates many of whom were very unlikely winners.

What's interesting is that the Washington Post, which is tracking Palin's endorsements with high profile graphics, is not similarly tracking President Obama's endorsements. Could it be because the President has such a dismal record*? Not even close to blind chance of 50/50. And there are no long shot endorsements as most of Palin's picks are.

Then there's Palin's game changing framing of issues. Jennifer Rubin:
"And it’s not simply candidates that she gets right. Her death-panel zinger not only revealed an underlying truth about ObamaCare’s plans to ration care; she also managed, with a hot button phrase, to electrify critics and infuriate defenders of the bill. Her populist appeal, and sometimes overdone criticism of elite media, was in 2008 a precursor of the Tea Party movement — conservatism that is anti-establishment, small-government-minded, and celebrates individual responsibility."
What could this mean to 2012? That Palin's special understanding of the American people is the key to guiding the U.S. out of its current problems? Both Rubin and John Dickerson think it possible.
"Now, being a political soothsayer and a superb judge of talent (she plucked Nikki Haley out of obscurity by watching a single video) doesn’t ensure a successful candidacy or an effective presidency. But it’s not nothing. And having experienced an over-credentialed pseudo-intellectual president who lacks a basic understanding of the American people, the public may find something refreshing about someone who 'gets' what the country is about. Palin knows what to look for in candidates because she is in sync with the center-right zeitgeist. If she knows what the country is about and what makes it successful, the argument would go, she might possess, as [John] Dickerson explains, 'a special light to guide the country out of the muck.' (This was the secret to Ronald Reagan, by the way. It didn’t matter what the issue was — he would get it 'right' because he instinctively understood the superiority of free markets, the destiny of America, and the character of his fellow citizens. Yes, all caveats apply, and Palin is not Reagan.)"
*There are the high profile losses in Massachusetts (Coakley), Pennsylvania (Specter), New Jersey (Corzine), Virginia (Deeds). There were a couple of wins in Colorado (Bennet) and Arkansas (Lincoln), but Lincoln is 28 points behind her Republican challenger, and Bennet is iffy at nearly 3 points behind in his race.


OregonGuy said...

I suspect the greatest difficulty people have with the Governor is that she is a beautiful woman with an irritating accent.

Not irritating if you live in North Dakota, Minnesota or the UP.

But there is that dissonance. And it's subject to easy parody. And making fun of those who hold views outside the Leftist mainstream is the tactical choice most often made. It's easier to ridicule than reply.

It will be harder to ridicule the Governor if she continues to succeed in getting common sense folks elected to political offices. People who are willing to wrest the levers of powers away from the legions who are invested in preserving the status quo.

"A special light."

Yeah. I like that.

T. D. said...

I think they hate Palin because she is so charismatic and actually lives out her beliefs. With the implosion of Obama (who now has a hard time filling even free venues), there is no one on the political scene who stirs such excitement.

They ridiculed Reagan before, during and after his term of office. Ridicule comes easy, but real accomplishment makes it sound more and more hollow.

I still am amazed that history teachers rate President Obama, who has no clear enduring legacy, higher than Reagan, who ended the four decades long Cold War and threat of world nuclear destruction without firing a shot.

You can't reason with people like that. As the years pass events that discredit them gradually take on more and more weight. I like what Jennifer Rubin wrote yesterday:

". . . the clique that scoffed at the notion that Ronald Reagan (or Margaret Thatcher or John Paul II) could win the Cold War and that has bowed before the false idol of Keynesianism should not be expected to reflect on its misjudgments. Unlike the Bourbons (who managed to remember everything), the left learns nothing and remembers nothing. It is why it is so drearily predictable and so often surprised."