Politics

Sarah Palin: Conservative of the Year

Sarah Palin wins HUMAN EVENTS’ prestigious “Conservative of the Year” Award for 2008 for her genius at annoying all the right people. The last woman to get liberals this hot under the collar would have been … let’s see now … oh, yeah: Me!

The entire presidential election year was kind of a downer for conservatives. Once the “maverick” John McCain won the nomination, the rest of the year was like watching a slow motion car crash. Except at least a slow-motion car crash is occasionally entertaining. So it was going to be a long year.

Until Palin.

When McCain chose our beauteous Sarah as his running mate, the maverick was finally acting like a real maverick — as opposed to the media’s definition of a “maverick” which is: “agreeing with the editorial positions of the New York Times.”

Pre-Palin it had been one race — boring old “You kids get off my lawn!” John McCain versus the exciting, new politician Barack Obama, who threw caution to the wind and bravely ran as the Pro-Hope candidate. And then our heroic Sarah bounded out of the Alaska tundra and it became a completely different race. This left the press completely discombobulated and upset. They didn’t know whether to attack Sarah for not having an abortion or go after her husband for not being a sissy.

I assume Palin was chosen because McCain had heard that she was a real conservative and he had always wanted to meet one — no, actually because he needed a conservative on the ticket, but that he had no idea that picking her would send the left into a tailspin of wanton despair.

But if anyone on the McCain campaign chose Palin because she would drive liberals crazy, my hat is off to him!

True, Palin made some embarrassing gaffes.

She complained that we didn’t have enough “Arabic translators” in Afghanistan — not realizing the natives don’t speak Arabic in Afghanistan, but rather a variety of regional dialects, the most common of which is Pashtun.

Speaking to military veterans one time, Palin said, “Our nation honors its unbroken line of fallen heroes — and I see many of them in the audience here today.”

She bragged about passing a law regulating the nuclear industry that it turned out never became a law at all.

Some days Palin said Venezuela’s dictator Hugo Chavez should suffer “regional isolation” — but then on others she’d say she supported the president’s meeting with Chavez.

She told one audience about recent tornados in Kansas that had killed 10,000 people. In fact, a dozen people were killed in the tornados.

She referred to the “57 states” that make up the U.S.

Speaking of her eldest daughter’s pregnancy, she said Bristol was being “punished” with a baby.

As you probably know — or guessed by now — none of these gaffes were uttered by Palin. They are all Obama gaffes. Luckily, he made them to a star-struck press that managed not to ask him a difficult question for two years.

It seemed like the media would introduce an all-new double standard each day throughout the two glorious months of Palin’s candidacy.

I don’t remember, for example, zealous inquiries into the supposedly peculiar religious practices of any candidates in past elections. No one in the press touched on Sen. Joe Lieberman’s religious beliefs when he was Gore’s running mate. (Nor, while we’re on the subject, was the media particularly interested in the beliefs of the religion that inspired the 9/11 attacks on America.)

But the press snapped right back into their anti-religious hysteria for a candidate who was a Pentecostal! The same media that couldn’t be bothered to investigate Obama’s ties to former Weathermen or Syrian Nationalist Tony Rezko was soon hot on the trail of a rumor that Palin’s church had a speaker 30 years ago who spoke in tongues!

Let me think now: Were there ever any unusual or otherwise noteworthy speeches or sermons given in churches where Obama worshipped? Hmmm … it’s on the tip of my tongue.

Liberals also suddenly decided that a woman with children could not handle the stress of higher office. Until Palin reared her beautiful head, this is precisely the sort of thinking liberals would have denounced as the Neanderthal, backwards, good old boy network attitude that had created a “glass ceiling.”

Let’s consider the facts: Palin’s oldest son was about to be under the tender care of Gen. David Petraeus after being shipped off to Iraq. Her next oldest child was about to be married and probably would prefer that her parents butt out. That left three children under the age of 15, which was almost the same as Obama had.

So Palin had one more child — and a lot more executive experience — than the guy at the top of the Democrats’ ticket. (I suspect what liberals were really mad about was that if Palin became Vice President, she probably would have hired a nanny who was a U.S. citizen.)

Having indignantly rejected experience as a presidential qualification in the case of Obama, liberals had to raise questions about Palin’s experience gingerly. But, in short order, they threw caution to the wind and began energetically criticizing Palin for her lack of experience. I call that two … two … two standards in one!

Like most Democrats, both Obama and Biden boasted of their humble beginnings, while having fully adopted the attitudes, pomposity and style of the elites.

Meanwhile, Palin is the sort of genuine American that brings out the worst, most egregious pomposity of liberals. For weeks, Carl Bernstein was showing up on TV to announce: “We still don’t have the date of first issuance of her passport.” Members of the establishment would be astonished to learn that more Americans have guns than passports.

Palin blows a kiss to fans during a rally in Kissimmee, Fla., on October 26. (Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/MCT)

Liberals were angry at Palin because they thought she should look and act like Kay Bailey Hutchinson: Upper crust, prissy and stiff.

Palin had a husband in the Steelworkers Union, a sister and brother-in-law who owned a gas station, and five attractive children — one headed for Iraq, one a Down’s syndrome baby and one the cutest little girl anyone had ever seen.

In a nutshell, Palin was everything Democrats are always pretending to be, but never are.

She didn’t have to conjure up implausible images of herself duck hunting as Hillary Clinton did. Nor was Palin the typical Democratic elected female official who went straight from college into politics, like Nita Lowey.

Despite their phony championing of “women’s issues” (i.e. abortion) there was not one Democrat woman who could win a head-to-head contest with Palin. Especially not if we got to see their faces. Democrats may have a fleet of women politicians, but they don’t have a deep bench of attractive ones. You don’t even think of most Democratic woman as women: Rosa Delauro, Nita Lowey, Patty Murray, Janet Napolitano — and the list goes on. Oh, sure, there are the odd female Democrat sex kittens — your Janet Renos, your Donna Shalalas — but they’re the exception to the rule.

After Palin gave her barnburner of a speech at the Republican National Convention, a friend of mine in a liberal industry told me his friends were aggressively confronting him demanding to know if Palin was raised by a secret cult of Christians that taught children nothing but Creationism and public speaking.

Oh, how I wish he had said “yes.” Imagine the aneurisms! I think what liberals were trying to say was: Gosh, she’s an exceptionally attractive mother of five!

The Obama campaign was so alarmed by Palin’s speech, it loudly dismissed the speech saying she didn’t write it. At least that’s what a press release written by an Obama campaign staffer said.

Indeed, the first words out of every Palin critic’s mouth were: “Good speech, but she didn’t write it.” So I guess all liberals were reading the same talking points written for them by the Obama campaign. At least Palin pays her speechwriters. Neil Kinnock is still waiting for his check.

Speaking of Joe Biden, he said that Palin’s speech had a lot of style but little substance. Inasmuch as Biden was Obama’s running mate, I think that meant he liked it!

A newspaper in Boston responded to Palin’s speech by interviewing hairdressers who criticized Sarah’s hairstyle. (Where were these people after Joe Biden’s speech?)

Trendy dinner party opinion soon demanded that all liberals take up the cry that Palin must let the press have a whack at her. Almost immediately after she was introduced to the nation, the cry went up: “When are we going to be allowed to ask Palin questions?”

Palin’s refusal to meet with the press for one week after being chosen as McCain’s running mate was evidently more maddening than Obama’s refusal to appear on Fox News for almost the entirety of his campaign.

Everyone acted as if Obama’s feat of running for President for two years constituted a complete and thorough vetting.

It might have been, except that the entire media had apparently agreed: “OK, none of us will ask Obama about Tony Rezko, William Ayers, and Jeremiah Wright.”

Hillary was hissed by the audience for mentioning Rezko at a Democratic debate and George Stephanopoulos nearly lost his career for asking Obama one William Ayers question at another.

Osama bin Laden was more upset about the Rev. Jeremiah Wright than liberals were — especially after “Jeremiah Wright videos” passed “al Qaeda videos” for most total viewings on Youtube. (He was kicking himself for not coming up with that “God Damn America” line first!)

Who cares if Palin was qualified to be President? She was running with John McCain! There was no chance that ticket was going to place her anywhere near the presidency. In fact, I can’t think of a better place to put someone you wanted to keep away from the White House than on a ticket with McCain.

Palin was a kick in the pants, she energized conservatives, and she made liberal heads explode. Other than his brave military service, introducing Sarah Palin to Americans is the greatest thing John McCain ever did for his country.

But unless Palin is going to be the perpetual running mate of “moderate” Republicans who need conservative bona fides, she will need to become wiser and better read. Even Reagan didn’t run for President in his 40s. (True Obama is in his 40s, but we are not Democrats.)

Perhaps Palin’s year is 2012, but I would recommend that she take a little more time to become older and wiser. She ought to spend the next decade being a good governor, tending to her children so none of them turn out like Ron Reagan Jr., and reading everything Phyllis Schlafly, Thomas Sowell, Ronald Reagan and “Publius” have ever written. (She also might keep in mind that HUMAN EVENTS was Ronald Reagan’s favorite newspaper!)

In time, HUMAN EVENTS’ 2008 Conservative of the Year will be ready to be our President and someday can sweep into office and dismantle all the heinous government programs Obama and the Democrats are about to foist on the nation. Who knows? She might even be able to run as the candidate of “hope” and “change.”

Read HUMAN EVENTS’ exclusive interview with Gov. Sarah Palin.

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