A Double-Shot of Palin

September 30, 2008

Two new Palin interviews are available: another segment with Couric, and the first in her series of interviews with right-wing talk radio hosts. Some fun excerpts:

HH: Governor, you mentioned the people who are struggling right now. Have you and your husband, Todd, ever faced tough economic times where you had to sit around a kitchen table and make tough choices?

SP: Oh my goodness, yes, Hugh. I know what Americans are going through. Todd and I, heck, we’re going through that right now even as we speak, which may put me again kind of on the outs of those Washington elite who don’t like the idea of just an everyday working class American running for such an office.

As it turns out, she is likely to weather this storm just fine:

Their combined income of nearly a quarter-million dollars last year was five times the median household income for Wasilla’s 7,000 residents. They own a single-engine plane, two boats, two personal watercraft and a half-million-dollar, custom-built home on a lake that is worth three times the average of other homes in town.

Not too shabby.

This one isn’t such a big deal since she doesn’t say anything specifically incorrect, but I suspect Palin isn’t clear on how long Israel has been around:

And all of those trials and tribulations throughout history that Israel has gone through, not only does that allow me to want to support that country, but Israel is our strongest and most important ally in the Middle East.

This will no doubt be decried as more of that pernicious ‘gotcha jounalism’, and, to be fair, it’s hard to miss the contempt in Couric’s eyes when she’s speaking to Palin, but this is bad news on both the experience question, and her tendency to lie reflexively and poorly:

Couric: And when it comes to establishing your worldview, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read before you were tapped for this to stay informed and to understand the world?

Palin: I’ve read most of them, again with a great appreciation for the press, for the media.

Couric: What, specifically?

Palin: Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me all these years.

Couric: Can you name a few?

Palin: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news, too. Alaska isn’t a foreign country, where it’s kind of suggested, “Wow, how could you keep in touch with what the rest of Washington, D.C., may be thinking when you live up there in Alaska?” Believe me, Alaska is like a microcosm of America.

Finally, a little of her patente rhetorical style on global warming:

Couric: What’s your position on global warming? Do you believe it’s man-made or not?

Palin: Well, we’re the only Arctic state, of course, Alaska. So we feel the impacts more than any other state, up there with the changes in climates. And certainly, it is apparent. We have erosion issues. And we have melting sea ice, of course. So, what I’ve done up there is form a sub-cabinet to focus solely on climate change. Understanding that it is real. And …

Couric: Is it man-made, though in your view?

Palin: You know there are – there are man’s activities that can be contributed to the issues that we’re dealing with now, these impacts. I’m not going to solely blame all of man’s activities on changes in climate. Because the world’s weather patterns are cyclical. And over history we have seen change there. But kind of doesn’t matter at this point, as we debate what caused it. The point is: it’s real; we need to do something about it.

As a firm believer in free will, I think it’s terrific that she won’t blame all of man’s activites solely on climate change. Though her sentences aren’t quite as crisp, there is something about her way of answering questions that always reminds me of Bart Simpson:

The exports of Libya are numerous in amount. One thing they export is corn, or as the Indians call it, ‘maize’. Another famous Indian was Crazy Horse. In conclusion, Libya is a land of contrast. Thank you.

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