Palin: pining for a signing

Palin: pining for a signing
Photo courtesy of sxc.hu

Photo courtesy of sxc.hu

I have never drunk a curdled glass of half-and-half. Neither have I read Sarah Palin’s new book, Going Rogue. I’m definitely sure that I wouldn’t feel good after doing either one.

It is neither secret, nor negative, that Utah is a staunchly conservative state.  There are drawbacks to living in a subculture where a dominant ideology is omnipresent in both government and society; if you agree with the ideology, your views remain unchallenged, but if you disagree with the ideology, you’re instantly fighting an uphill battle.

Palin, who became the face (and body) of the contemporary conservative movement through her nomination as Republican vice presidential candidate, should find an easy homerun with a conservative Utah audience.  But will she?

In a word:  No.  Palin’s public image and identity is defined not by what she is, but by what she is not.  She is not a man; she is not a feminist; she did not terminate her pregnancy when she learned the child had Down’s Syndrome; she did not build the so-called “bridge to nowhere;” she was not elected to the office of vice president; she did not finish her only term as governor.

So why is this woman, who is about as qualified for political office as the moose that she so proudly hunts, being validated by our cultural attention?  Why are we encouraging her to go on by acknowledging her presence in our state, let alone in our national consciousness?  By writing this I am clearly as guilty of this as anyone, but still, there is this fascination that so many have with this odd representation of a political party that is quickly regressing into irrelevance.

Fear of a strong woman is a large part of why we hear more about Palin than we do, say, Hilary Clinton.  Clinton has a law degree, a long history of civil service, a great deal of executive experience, and is currently operating under the radar as our Secretary of State.  Clinton, however, is demonized for not being feminine enough and for cuckolding herself to considerable libido of her husband.  Yet we turn our heads toward Palin, who has become a minstrel show of feminism, a woman who embraces and aggrandizes subjugation by a political system dominated by parties of white men afraid of a threat to the status quo.

What’s clearly more important, though, is that we should all ignore Palin’s signing. I’m still not sure why it’s at a place better known for selling toilet paper and frozen pizza in bulk than, you know, a book store, but when you remember that a great deal of people paid hard-earned cash during a recession for a book “by” this beacon of nothingness, a lot of things stop making sense.

If you do go, though, pick me up a gargantuan jug of salsa for this chip on my shoulder.

9 Responses to "Palin: pining for a signing"

  1. WRE   December 8, 2009 at 6:05 pm

    “There are drawbacks to living in a subculture where a dominant ideology is omnipresent in both government and society; if you agree with the ideology, your views remain unchallenged, but if you disagree with the ideology, you’re instantly fighting an uphill battle.”

    I suppose that you’ve never lived anywhere else in the entire world because this scenario you described is in no way peculiar to Utah.

    And if you’re worried about qualification for political office try and remember that we just elected one of the most unqualified candidates ever as President because of a nifty catch phrase. Unless Americans were “hoping” that the economy would tank even further or they were eager to “change” their facebook status to unemployed. You see, that’s the reason that we don’t normally elect Senators as President, BECAUSE THEY DON’T HAVE ANY EXPERIENCE MANAGING ANYTHING.

    Reply
  2. Kaye   December 8, 2009 at 6:29 pm

    WRE: number of presidents who have been senators (which, for the record requires tremendous management ability) first: 16. Number of presidents who have been a governor (which I hope you think requires management ability) first: 17.
    You can say any outlandish thing you like, but we’re all more likely to listen to it if you present an argument and check your facts, instead of just stating things as though they were true.

    Reply
  3. Nathan   December 8, 2009 at 9:33 pm

    The sweet irony of this piece is that you draw more attention to her by asking everyone to ignore her.

    I have never taken Palin seriously as a political candidate, but it amuses me to no end when I see the negative feedback cycle of Palin-haters hating -> drawing more attention to her -> getting angry about how much attention she gets -> hating her…

    You have no one to blame but yourself, because you took her seriously enough to write this. I’ll wager that if the Palin-haters could stop hating–not only would the Universe be destroyed by the paradox–but she would disappear over night.

    Reply
  4. Anonymous   December 8, 2009 at 11:13 pm

    Nathan: “By writing this I am clearly as guilty of this as anyone, but still, there is this fascination that so many have with this odd representation of a political party that is quickly regressing into irrelevance.”

    It’s sort of, you know…right there.

    Reply
  5. WRE   December 9, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    Kaye,
    Okay, sure, but until Obama we hadn’t elected a Senator President since Nixon. Gee, I wonder why.

    Reply
  6. Nathan   December 9, 2009 at 6:06 pm

    @Anonymous “political party that is quickly regressing into irrelevance.”

    This sounds like wishful thinking on your part. Care to make a wager about the 2010 elections and which party will gain seats?

    Reply
  7. WRE   December 10, 2009 at 2:32 am

    “Palin’s public image and identity is defined not by what she is, but by what she is not. She is not a man; she is not a feminist; she did not terminate her pregnancy when she learned the child had Down’s Syndrome; she did not build the so-called “bridge to nowhere;” she was not elected to the office of vice president; she did not finish her only term as governor.”

    This can also be applied to Obama, because he certainly was not and is not judged on anything he’s accomplished. He is not (completely) white; he is not a Republican; he is not old; he was not a “Washington insider”; he did not support the war in Iraq.

    Unfortunately, this election was more about what the candidates were not than what they were. And in all honesty, we deserve whatever consequences the next three years bring.

    Reply
  8. whatever   December 15, 2009 at 7:04 pm

    Person A. “Palin wokka wokka!”. Person B. “wokka wokka, Palin!”. Person A. “Palin wokka wokka!”. Person B. “wokka wokka, Palin!”.
    Me “wokka”. Persons A-B “Palin?”.

    Reply
  9. Andy   December 16, 2009 at 9:42 pm

    I think that whatever’s comment may be the most insight anyone could possibly have about Palin. And I’ve got absolutely no idea what it means (outside of a really awesome Fozzie Bear reference).

    Reply

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