She’s got charisma, “a special quality of leadership that inspires allegiance and devotion.” Sarah Palin was on my wish list (along with Mark Sanford, Bobby Jindal and, for sentimental reasons, Condi Rice) back when Anne Coulter was running around pitching the Greatest Hair in the GOP as the salvation of conservatism. But I had no idea that she was likely to be the Republican answer to The One. The Democrats are running scared and I don’t think it’s even dawned on them yet just how scared they should be. If she just works a tiny bit on the hypnotic cult leader voice roll thing, she could have her own styrofoam temple in a few months.
The line from Sarah Palin’s speech tonight, “I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a ‘community organizer,’ except that you have actual responsibilities,” was excellent. It was funny, it wasn’t really mean spirited and it pointed out the important point that no one is ever up to the task of the Presidency based solely on experience. Integrity, judgment, decisiveness and political principles are more important. All that said, I would rather not hear the phrase “community organizer” again. As far as I can tell the best thing Barack Obama has done in his life is take a $12,000 a year job working to help the poor. All jokes about Barack being The One aside, it’s odd to hear self-styled Christians belittle him for that. (I would argue with the way his group wanted to help the poor – by organizing church and neighborhood groups to lobby for government help – but that’s a different issue.)
Another phrase I could do without – the Clintonian “soccer mom” or its Republican incarnation “hockey mom.” (Was Mrs. Soetero a basketball mom?) I’m ready to hear people worry about the “math league moms,” the “History Day moms,” the “FFA moms” and “FCCLA moms.” Soccer, hockey and all those other incubators for bullying and violence get all the support they need from Nike, they don’t need a representative in the White House or the Capitol Building. PTA mom is a good place to start.