I suppose it should go without saying that if Sarah Palin has been reduced to speaking to hard-right audiences, but can't do any nonpartisan interviews because they're confident she'll blow it, and can't appear without John McCain because he may have to bail her out if things get dicey, and generally can't do anything but stay in her little anti-media box, coming out twice a day like the little bird in a cuckoo clock to yell a few phrases into a crowd and leave again, she's all but useless to her own campaign.
Her favorable ratings have been diving.
She's still got Troopergate in the works. There's still gawd knows how much embarrassing tape from her Katie Couric interview, which is probably going to keep being dribbled out from now until the election.
So far, she's been making her most indelible American impressions on the pages of the National Enquirer.
Yeah, she's firing up the wingnut base. Who cares. The wingnut base is the easiest group of people on the planet to fire up.
They get fired up when they think gays might steal their marriages.
They get fired up when they have to press "one" for English.
They get fired up when some black guy gets all uppity and runs for president.
They get fired up when their sub-sub-sub-version of Christianity isn't the dominant religious ideal of the nation.
Holding Sarah Palin in front of them is like teasing a dog through a fence, but that's about it.
So ya know, McCain -- by all means, if you're going to throw this Hail Mary pass, then throw it in earnest. Let her pop on out there for interviews with real reporters -- you know, as opposed to the biting "journalism" of people like Kristol and Hannity.
Have her answer questions on the stump that haven't been pre-approved in triplicate.
Right now, "maverick" seems synonymous with "coward" -- if the strength of your convictions extends only to inciting crowds against Obama, and you've got nothing else to run with, then I don't think you can get too snippy when the public just starts laughing at you.
I don't want Obama to win because McCain's campaign sucks as badly as most Democratic campaigns have in previous years. I want him to win on the issues.
But since McCain and Palin are avoiding even mentioning the issues -- or even appearing in locations where they might be, shudder, asked about them -- I guess we'll have to settle for the first.
Thursday, October 09, 2008