Sarah Palin Speech

There was nothing unexpected nor new in her speech. She spoke in favor of drilling in Alaska. Criticized “big government” and claimed to be against it (she took inflated funding for several projects in Alaska, see WP for article). She presented herself as an average, every day, PTA mom who is tough and resilient, which she is. And she spent a considerable amount of time praising McCain’s consistency, experience, and pro-war stance. He is not consistent but he does have Senate experience and he is pro-war. She talked about pride in the nation and implied critique of the Obamas while actively praising McCain, erasing the fact McCain has oft been quoted saying he was “not proud of America” until he got back from Vietnam. She also described her ethics reform work, staunchly avoiding an explanation for her own ethical violations (firings, lobbyists, padding project budgets). And she took the expected shots at the media, who deserve it for taking shots at her kid.

It was a completely expected speech, a party line speech, and I don’t think I know anything more about her than I did last week. Since everybody keeps calling her a Maverick, I expected something fresh and new all though still in keeping with Republican values. It was neither fresh nor new and her gender talk stayed right at the level of:

You know what they say is the difference between a hockey mom and a pitbull? lipstick.

Those are her words, not mine.

(One pundit before she spoke said the speech had been written beforehand by McCain’s people for whoever the pick was, but that they tweaked it for her. It is easy to believe based on all the basic talking points and praise for McCain. And if it is true it speaks volumes about his ego but also about her strength, since she was able to change it up a bit.)

One thing I did not expect: she was clearly heavily coached on foreign affairs and flubbed a couple of talking points. Because she is a solid speaker her mistakes were obvious and made her seem even less qualified to handle foreign policy. I don’t think that is going to impact most people’s votes.

Another: She said she would be an advocate for the differently-abled in the White House. Given the number of abusive incidents involving the differently-abled and the willful disregard for the ADA all over the nation, that is an important promise. My only concern is the way she mobilizes the image of her own differently-abled child in every speech to craft herself as super mom and score conservative points on abortion and motherhood.

At the end of the day, as we theorists tend to say “there was no there, there.”

(see fact checker weigh in on some of her talking points)

image unattributed.



21 thoughts on “Sarah Palin Speech

  1. Up until now, I was not sure who I was going to vote for. This woman’s speech and delivery was amazing. She is who we have been looking for to ad some hope for politics and the nation. Time will tell. For now, it is McCain and Palin for me.

  2. As a feminist and progressive, I found this speech short on the visionary pursuit of the Greater Good and long on passive aggressive sarcasm. It was sickening to watch pious conservatives cheer her mean-spirited jabs–so much for good Christian values. If this is what Republicans believe in, no wonder the country is in such a mess. Tonight is just one more reason that Democrats have got to take back the leadership of America; there is simply too much at stake!

  3. We still knew more of Sarah Palin before her speech, than we no of Obama right now! By the way was Obama ever vetted for President? We only find out today that he was concieved out of wedlock. but thats differant–RIIIIGGHHTT!!!

  4. Sarah Palin is a person who believes that God has put her on the national stage to take America into the last days of the End Times. Scratch beneath the surface of this speech, and you will hear the faint drumbeat of the current administration suspending the election in November and simply staying in power. WAKE UP!USA, WE ARE SCREWED! AND HERE’S THE PROOF:

  5. Ugh. I just watched the rerun on CNN. She scares the shit out of me. That crowd scared the shit out of me. The mindless chanting of “U-S-A” and the infantile booing made me ill. I’m sorry I can’t be more articulate… I’m just so troubled by the rabid nationalism… the mean-spiritedness… It was such a departure from the DNC which seemed to be so much about hope and joy. I wept while watching the DNC… i want to cry now, too. These people cheered the prospect of drilling in a protected wildlife reserve. I’m beyond words. On a sidenote: I REALLY dislike Amy Holmes. That woman is lost and really needs some help.

  6. Get over yourself. considering she was supposed to “make Mccain slink away in disgrace.” regretting his decision she proved.A. She is not a political “hack job”B. John Mccain didn’t just pick “any ol’ girl.”C. If Mccain needs a pit bull (VP Job by the way) she’s the woman for the job. D. contrast that against Joe Biden, If Barak hadn’t stepped out on that stage his night would have been sunk. Sarah needs no such saving.

  7. wow. I hadn’t really expected so much reaction to what I viewed as a ho-hum party line talk. So I’ve approved all comments without edit so you all can see the passion Palin’s talk created on all sides and I’ll keep doing it until somebody crosses into name calling. ##mike ## – welcome to the blog. Please read posts before you write comments. None of the things you list here were said in this post or on this blog. If my honest opinion inspires you to tell me to get over myself, imagine what your completely unrelated list of issues inspires me and others to think about you. Let’s try talking to each other and not at some imaginary audience shall we? ##SV ## – I’m letting you slide on language today . . . In a way, you’ve hit on the galvanizing part of Palin’s speech: galvanizing for them b/c it fervently hit all their talking points and galvanizing for us b/c we vehemently disagree with their talking points. Holmes lost my respect with the beauty parlor interviews during the primaries. ##Douglas## – welcome to the blog. I’ve never heard Palin say that is what she believes in. I think there is enough disconcerting about the Republican ticket without extrapolating outward. Palin believes in teaching creationism and abstinence in the schools, she is anti-abortion, defines wife, mother, and marriage narrowly to exclude many progressive definitions of the word and certainly the queer community. That video is probably giving the Republicans the same reaction Sin Verguenza had to the RNC. I think for the undecided or independents in this election we need to find a common language. ##Jrod## – welcome to the blog. I’m not sure which “we” you are referring to. Most watched Obama publicly vetted for almost a year. He has two books on his life. His voting record, public service record, and teaching are all public record. If you did not learn enough about him during the countless debates, interviews, and deconstructions this past year, you can do the research with google and a library card. Much of his policy stuff can be found here. VP vetting is private. McCain admits having only had two meetings with Palin. And a panel of Republicans (and one pundit) yesterday at the RNC all agreed on national television that she would not have been chosen nor been a good pick if she were a man. I have a list of things about Biden I dislike in another post, but he was vetted.As for Obama’s birth, I don’t care if his parents were married any more than I care about Palin’s daughter not being married. Again, read before you comment. I say clearly in this post that the media deserved criticism for bringing up Palin’s daughter as an issue. Obama himself told the media to stop attacking her daughter. The only one implying double standard here is you. ##Anne## – welcome to the blog. It’s weird, you are the second person to describe the speech as “mean spirited,” to me those “jabs” were little more than you hear moms say to their kids at competitions & in that way very in keeping with her character. I guess that was part of my “blah” reaction to her speech; there is a way to talk about political differences without all the same old rhetoric. ##Suzanne## – welcome to the blog. I’m not sure which “we” you are referring to either, its clear from the comments thread many of us were not inspired by Palin. That said, thanks for coming and stating your case without demeaning anyone here or making comments unrelated to what was actually said. If you want to elaborate on what you mean by “hope for politics and nation” that would be great b/c from where I sit, she just seemed like more of the same.

  8. I did not like the pitbull and lipstick comment, she basically compared herself to a dog while would be soccer fathers would be seen as “rightly” competitive and driven and not seen as some uncontrollable emotionally driven beast. @ Sin Verguenz,I too felt scared by the chanting of USA and “rabid nationalism.” I thought to myself watching the audience scanning the faces for people of color and finding very few coupled with the values of the Republican party and the Sarah Pallin’s speech . . . I begin to worry more than I usually do about justice, equality, peace, women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, my mother’s black woman like struggles, the students of color i teach . . . i just feel extremely worried on so many levels by this convention.

  9. Fal – I agree. The pitbull comment and the ebay comment both made me cringe b/c of the gender implications; I get that the ebay comment was also a play on her being constructed as a “hick” but really . . .

  10. I agree with your assessment. Nothing particularly noteworthy was said last night. She is a polished public speaker but not terribly charismatic and her words did not have much substance.Even though I am a firm Obama supporter, I will be looking forward to McCain’s speech tonight…maybe he will touch on some issued Palin avoided- healthcare, education, etc.Great post!

  11. I thought the speech showed she still needs some polishing. There were more stumbles than you’d expect from a VP nominee in one of the most important speeches in her career. She still seems uncomfortable in this spotlight. And, frankly, I did not think she came off as sounding all that smart.On the other hand, Huckabee’s speech seemed to have everything her speech lacked. As an ultra liberal, I was thankful McCain did not choose him for VP.

  12. I actually liked the pitbull comment.While I didn’t read/watch the substance of her speech, the reactions to it all over the place concern me. The Republicans are making this more and more about her personality. If voters are focusing on that, and not on her (incredibly frightening) positions on the issues… troubling.

  13. ProfBW, sorry I didn’t get on the ball and get this earlier. *sigh*The sexual assault peer advocate line, set up through Arise Bookstore, is 651-434-2265. It is open 24 hours a day, but it is only open through Sept. 5 (tomorrow).Ugh.So, ummm, if anyone’s waiting in frustration because they haven’t heard the # yet…there it is…good for another 24 hours or so.Sorry!

  14. ##Katie## – the important thing is to have posted the number at all. no worries. ##ico## – I used to call myself stubborn when I was an undergrad, and one of my mentors used to always tell me to stop b/c “stubborn is a word to demean strong women” and tho it is not always, it often is. The same can be said for the pitbull analogy; it relies on gender differences and gender expectations – men are supposed to be aggressive sports fans, women not, men are allowed aggressive behavior, women (especially white middle class ones) not, etc. So while she did mean it as a compliment and a statement about her tenacity, in the same way that I am actually stubborn, it doesn’t, mean there isn’t actually a gender component. And yes, I too find the devotion troubling. ##Elin## – welcome to the blog Elin. I agree on the spotlight issue, both she and her family looked a little star struck and I too was concerned about Huckabee who is also extremely conservative, charismatic, and has been in public eye far more often. Can you pinpoint what you found “unintelligent” about her speech? ##birdie## – welcome to the blog. thanks for saying that I was starting to think I watched a different speech than everybody else given all the hype this am. I will be watching McCain tonight as well.

  15. It’s kind of cute how excited the right wing is over the Palin speech. Aww, lookit the widdle lady read a speech someone else wrote off a teleprompter in front of a canned audience of supporters. She’s adorable!

  16. pinstripebindi – welcome to the blog. I hope they weren’t being that sexist but it seems like sexism is one of the buzzwords of the election on all sides. grrr . . .

  17. She’s a good woman, and a feisty competitor.Actually I like all four presidential contenders.McCain is a maverick.Palin is inexperienced, but a quick study, and nobody’s fool.Obama is dedicated to helping Americans on the home front.Biden has a long history of experience with foreign affairs.What it comes down to for me is:WHICH CANDIDATES PROMISE TO END THE HUNDREDSOF BILLIONS OF OF DOLLARS BEING POURED DOWNTHE DRAIN in Iraq, and which want to continue the war effort,no end, no horizon in sight.For that crucial issue, the Obama team wins hands down.My humble opinion.Sorry, Sarah!

  18. ##CL## – welcome to the blog. I’m still not sure what is meant by maverick, but I agree with your overall assessment of the candidates and the difference in views of the war. I too am concerned about our troops, the civilians esp. women in the war zone, and the ultimate impact this is having on global security.##MJ## – welcome to the blog. I’m too much of a cynic to even note the lack of diversity in the audience (altho I did note the desperate attempt at diversity at the podium yesterday) thanks for bringing it up.

  19. Hey People…I found Sarah Palins real Nude Video atthis link has been deleted. comment approved to show what poor taste some people have in the sexist campaign. (just so you know, indication is that this person is voting Republican.)

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