The Re-Education of Sarah

The launch of Sarah 2.0 is apparently underway.  Today, she conducted a phone interview with conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt.  I won’t reprint the entire exchange, but you can get it off of Hugh’s site if you’re interested.  The questions are softball in the extreme – much like Sean Hannity’s – and the answers are much better than anything she’s uttered since – not surprisingly – the Hannity interview.  They’re almost content-free, but at least they’re coherent.

I’m sure the McCainites are so pleased with this tactic that they’re busily arranging an interview a day with the galaxy of conservative talk show hosts.  Look for more hard-hitting interviews from the likes of Michael Savage, Glenn Beck, Dennis Prager, Michael Medved, G. Gordon Liddy and Laura Ingraham.

– Austin emarketing fine

The Chosen One…

What would I talk about without Sarah Palin handing me new material every day?

Today, our rooting, tooting, gun-packing, spunky mother of five, governor of 1.2 people per square mile tells Katie Couric, who is rapidly becoming the Boswell to Governor Palin’s Johnson, that she – singularly – is “the new energy, the new face, the new ideas…” of the ticket.  As always with Sarah Louise, the actual transcript of her words and the context is better than paraphrasing:

Katie Couric: You made a funny comment, you’ve said you have been listening to Joe Biden’s speeches since you were in second grade, something like that.

Sarah Palin: It’s been since like ’72, yah.

Couric: You have a 72-year-old running mate – is that kind of a risky thing to say, insinuating that Joe Biden’s been around a while?

Palin: Oh no, it’s nothing negative at all. He’s got a lot of experience and just stating the fact there, that we’ve been hearing his speeches for all these years. So he’s got a tremendous amount of experience and, you know, I’m the new energy, the new face, the new ideas and he’s got the experience based on many many years in the Senate. And voters are gonna have a choice there of what it is that they want in these next four years.

Hmmm. I wonder if they told Mister-26-Years-in-the-Congress that his services were no longer necessary and that Governor Palin would take it from here?

Now, if I were predisposed to be charitable to the Alaska Governor, I would allow that this gaffe is not – on the surface – much more than a slip of the tongue; “we” instead of “I” and the answer is actually a good one.

I’m not.

This exchange – like her only decent answers in the Gibson and earlier Couric interviews when she absolutely, positively convinced me that she believes she’s ready for this job – shines a little light into the worldview of Sarah Palin.   I’m worried – truly – that she believes she’s been chosen for this job and this belief – along with the reaction she is generating among the base – is feeding a messianic complex.

– Austin

PS – The vidoe is not up on YouTube yet, but here’s a link to the CBS site.  Who knows?  Maybe there’s even more goodies in the full interview! payroll calculator fine

Coleman’s Crimes

Call me old fashioned, but when a candidate falsely accuses his opponent of being a criminal, I think voters should get outraged. And that’s exactly what Senator Norm Coleman and the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) are doing when they falsely accuse challenger Al Franken of “physically attacking a heckler,” which criminal prosecutors like to call “assault,” a crime punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

Here’s the background on the Coleman charge: A Star Tribune gossip columnist reported in January that Franken was allegedly rude to a college student asking him questions. To the best of my knowledge, Franken never assaulted this student or other hecklers. And if merely engaging in impolite debate were a crime, I think we all know that the Same Rowdy Crowd would be awash in orange jumpsuits.

But, of course, being impolite is not a crime, something former prosecutor Coleman knows. KSTP-TV has reported that the assault accusation is false, and generously gave the pro-Coleman ad a D minus grade.

But that’s not the end of Coleman’s false criminal prosecutions. Coleman and the NRSC have also claimed that Franken “hasn’t paid taxes,” which is also a criminal act that lands loads of people in jail. However, unless I’m missing something, Franken paid his taxes, but in the wrong jurisdictions, which is substantially different than “hasn’t paid taxes.” That’s why local tax evader Robert Beale is headed to jail, and Franken is merely refiling in the correct jurisdictions.

Other pro-Coleman ads have used grotesque grammatical tricks to imply Franken criminality, such as when they say ‘Franken writes about committing rape,’ which could easily sound to voters like Franken committed rape and then wrote about it. The truth is that Franken told a crude joke in private about an outrageously hypothetical rape, which incidentally is also allegedly true of the Coleman-endorsed John McCain. While the Republicans’ grammatical gymnastics is not technically inaccurate, it has a strong stench to it.

And then, of course, there is the closing of this ad, which MinnPost has pointed out is designed to look as if Franken were in prison.

So, let’s recap. Franken has been accused by the former criminal prosecutor Coleman and the NRSC of committing assault and tax evasion, crimes that would land him in jail and disquality him from service. But Franken has not committed any crimes. Again, rudeness, crude humor and crappy book-keeping are completely different than the crimes of assault, rape and tax evasion.

Coleman hasn’t committed any crimes either. But there should be an electoral penalty for the shameless rhetorical offenses he and the NRSC are committing.

– Loveland

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