Thursday, October 2, 2008

"So what, neither can I!"

I've tried to exercise restraint. I can't do it anymore.

I'm not going to unleash on Sarah Palin. There's no need to do that. When not shielded from the media in a hermetically sealed undisclosed location with all the other politicians who are allergic to public accountability, she gives herself plenty of leash... and then hangs herself with it expertly.

What I can't take anymore are the people who support her because "she's just like me." The Apologist Chorus. Here's how it goes:

The person gunning for Leader of the Free World can't say that she ever set foot on non-North American soil prior to 2007, and the Apologist Chorus sings: "So what, neither can I!"

When asked to name an information source she relies on, the person who wants to lead 300 million American citizens through arguably their country's greatest economic challenge can't name anything. And the Apologist Chorus sings: "So what, neither can I!"

When asked to name a Supreme Court case other than Roe v. Wade that she disagrees with, the Republican vice presidential nominee in the year 2008 can't. And the Apologist Chorus sings: "So what, neither can I!"

Don't get me wrong. It's not the "neither can I" that bothers me. It's the "so what." Ignorance is the only universal. Socrates famously said the only thing he knew was the fact of his own ignorance. That shows humility, self-awareness and a constant desire for greater knowledge. The "so what" of the Apologist Chorus shows pride, defensiveness and intellectual hostility.

If you're so indifferent to or hostile toward knowledge, then stop telling your children to value education, pull them out of school and cash in that college savings account.

If you think that your vice presidential candidate should be as content with or proud of his or her ignorance as you are, then run for president yourself.

If you think that a potential President of the United States should be unexceptional, then stop saying you believe in American Exceptionalism.

And if you think this country was founded by "regular folks," go back and read your history books, if you believe in history books.

And finally, let's just get real for a minute. Ladies and gentlemen of the Apologist Chorus, kindly turn your gaze to the white elephant standing in the middle of the room. If overturning Roe v. Wade is so important to you that it causes you to overlook every other social, political and economic issue (and every trait and qualification in a political candidate other than his or her desire to criminalize abortion), then please, for the love of God, just admit it. And stop apologizing.

8 comments:

Mike said...

These are the death throes of "the United States of Stupid." Did you think the beast was going to go down easy?

Hell no, it's going down like fucking King Kong, with Sarah Palin as Fay Wray and John McCain as huckster Carl Denham:

Carl Denham: Why, the whole world will pay to see this.

Captain Englehorn: No chains will ever hold that.

Carl Denham: We'll give him more than chains. He's always been king of his world, but we'll teach him fear. We're millionaires, boys. I'll share it with all of you. Why, in a few months, it'll be up in lights on Broadway: Kong, the Eighth Wonder of the World.

Holy mackerel! What a show!

m.f. said...

Is this where I should mention I kinda agree with the Nobel Prize secretary who recently suggested Americans are too isolated (I'd add ignorant) to create a world class literature.

Kevin Sawyer said...

And you would have been THRILLED if she cited Stone v. Graham.

I can name other court cases. Kelo v. New London, Grizwold v. Connecticut, Casey v. Planned Parenthood, Boumedine (sp?) v. Bush, Gonzalez v. Raich, Lawrence v. Texas, Everson v. Board of Education. So I guess I'm bonafide

But I doubt that any governor could tell me what all those court cases were about. I am certain that Joe Biden and John McCain couldn't, and I am pretty sure Obama couldn't (Con Law Prof. or no).

You might, but only because you just Googled them.

For lay conservatives who decry judicial activism, Kelo is a good case to have in your back pocket. That said, I would much rather have someone in office who will appoint judges to reverse that decision, than have one who knows all about it and LOVES it.

Besides, Palin beat your guy on Thursday night, and she didn't even need to invoke apocryphal dining experiences to do so.

Anonymous said...

Makes me wonder if everybody is getting their law degree from a box of Trix cereal.

Anonymous said...

Won the debate? Uh, no. That's just partisan spin.
She survived the debate, but she didn't win.
This independent poll gives Biden the clear nod in the debate.
This respected national poll shows the Obama team pulling ahead in overall polls in the days after the debate, as does this one.

Kevin Sawyer said...

She won the debate by making more accurate statements in favor of her candidacy. Biden came off as cool and collected, largely because he was comfortable spouting myriad BS about Pakistani missiles, restaurants, McCain's voting record et al...

As far as national polls, Gallup had Obama at +7 before and +7 today, with one more day of polling left to determine the overall impact of the debate, which is likely minimal.

I've noticed more random Obama supporters hopping onto blogs to post anonymously and drop talking points. That's a lame tactic all the way around.

Anonymous said...

And those were some sharp observations (way to "game" the debate results). Too bad the polls today disagree with your assessment (Gallup = Obama +8). Even the dyed-in-the-woolest can't argue with numbers. Or can you? (This oughta be good.) In the meantime, let the campaign meltdown begin.

Vegas Gopher said...

Socrates? You elitist.

Sad to say, I seem to recall having this exact conversation in the GG living room five years ago. We were probably sipping lattes from the bohemian nest of pseudo-intellectuals on the corner (Hi Garrison!), and no doubt the feisty lady from Texas was interjecting bon mots like, "Build my roads, dammit!" But it was pretty much the same conversation.

I'm beginning to fear that in 100 years, "Idiocracy" will be seen as a documentary.