Admit it folks. We, are fascinated by her; we are enthralled with this woman. And this is true across the entire American political spectrum, from those of us on the left, to the far right wingnuts, and covering the so called mainstream middle. There's a thirst for information driving us all to wikipedia, to the website for the chamber of commerce for Wasilla, google maps, and the church of God. Would we have done this for Mittens, Holy Joe, or even Pawlenty? I think not. Why not? Because she's an unknown, a tabula rasa, and we need to fill the data vacuum? That's what I thought at first. Then I thought that it's because she's pretty. But it wasn't until I watched that video of her, the Governor, addressing her church in Wasilla, and it hit me: She's WEIRD... as in, Life with the Hogans or Kardashians or Osbornes reality show weird. Please, go to huffpost and watch the whole video, including the intro of the pastor, and tell me that this woman doesn't creep you out. Analysis below....
First of all, let's deal with the substance of her candidacy:
- She is running on the America First ticket, but she has a demonstrable history of putting Wasilla first, and then Alaska first, and is even affiliated with a party who's platform is virtually treasonous. If I were a wingnut, I'd point out that Alaska owes everthing it has to the lower 48, and that if they had their way (undoing Alaska's statehood vote), then they'd be speaking Russian.
- She is not the face of reform, but the queen of pork. Her lobbying success on behalf of Wasilla, with the help of Abramoff associates, was nothing short of breathtaking. As we all know now, she lusted after the bridge to nowhere project, and then shamelessly denied that fact in her introduction as the VP candidate. Her list of accomplishments include little more than convincing Washington to fund oil and transportation projects in the name of "energy independence" (which is a myth created to serve the oil industry; but that's for a later diary). In fact, the history of Alaska consists, in large part, of US tax dollars flowing northward so that Alaska simply doesn't have the kind of budgetary and tax issues that the other states face. In fact, one might argue that, under Palin and her predecessors, Alaska is a socialist state without the crushing taxes.
- She is not a muckraker, but is waist deep in muck and corruption. She has a history going way back of abusing the power of her offices (both mayor and governor) to pursue political, personal and crazy ideological vendettas. She's even under investigation for one of these now.
- She supports teaching CREATIONISM (not just intelligent design) in public schools and, I submit, she supports teaching it in science class. See my my earlier diary on this. It still kills me.
So much for substance; now let's look at the weirdness. Watch the video, and remember that the woman speaking is a sitting GOVERNOR. Her talk is fraught with the language of modern fundamentalist christian doctrine, and it scares the crap out of me:
She says that it was "so cool" growing up in this church, getting saved here....2:45
She talks of the governership as "where god has sent me..." 3:08
She asks that she and the congregants strike a deal. To wit, I'll sell alaska's resources and nail down some huge government projects like the $30 billion pipline, if you all make sure that Alaska is "right in its heart".
She asks the congregants to pray that the iraq plan is god's plan. 6:18
Her son has a Jesus fish tattoo. 6:40
She prays for the spirit of prophecy to bring good things to come to Alaska. 9:15
This woman, the partner and soulmate of mavericky, middle of the road McCain, is further right, more fundamentalist, more orthodox, closer to Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson than any major political figure in the last 30 years.
There are other weirdnesses that fascinate us -- the names of her children, for example. Track and Trig and Willow and Piper and Bristol. Also, Bristol seems to be following in Mom's footsteps: Sarah and Todd eloped and Track was born eight months later. The whole scenario about her water breaking before she delivered a speech in Dallas and then flew back to Alaska, stopping in Seattle, only to drive from Anchorage to Wasilla is just strange; it reminds me of that love-crazed astronaut who drove from Florida to Houston in a diaper to confront her lover's lover.
In short, McCain and the right can call her focussed, hard-working, and successful all they want. I just think she's a nut.