Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sarah Palin: Give A Straight Answer Already!

Chance for VP

In one of my favorite movies – “Being There” the main character, Chance the Gardener (played by Peter Sellers) is a sheltered, simple minded man, whose life revolved around watching television and gardening. He finds himself thrust into the world of politics when he’s mistaken for a genius by people who mistake his name as “Chauncy Gardener”. Everyone sees what they want to hear and hears what they want to hear when it comes to Chance. While Chance looks distinguished and his brief comments about tending his garden are taken to be deep philosophical musings, he’s thrust into a the powerful world of money and politics. When, at a high-class social gathering, Chance is asked by someone about whether he’d write a book, we get this dialog:

Ron Steigler: Mr. Gardner, uh, my editors and I have been wondering if you would consider writing a book for us, something about your um, political philosophy, what do you say?

Chance the Gardener: I can't write.

Ron Steigler: Heh, heh, of course not, who can nowadays? Listen, I have trouble writing a postcard to my children. Look uhh, we can give you a six-figure advance, I'll provide you with the very best ghostwriter, proofreaders...

Chance the Gardener: I can't read.

Ron Steigler: Of course you can't! No one has the time! We, we glance at things, we watch television...

Chance the Gardener: I like to watch TV.

Ron Steigler: Oh, oh, oh sure you do. No one reads!

I’ve come to the conclusion that Chance really would do well in politics these days. The problem is, his answers are truthful, direct, and right on target. That would never work!

Direct answers seems foreign to Sarah Palin, who seems to have difficulty answering the simplest of questions. Case in point, the continuing saga of the Katie Couric interview, where Palin is asked about what newspapers she reads: (video and transcript below)

COURIC: And when it comes to establishing your world view, 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, I mean...

COURIC: Like what ones specifically? I'm curious that you...

PALIN: Um, all of 'em, any of 'em that um have been in front of me over all these years, um...

COURIC: Can you name any of them?

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 it seems like, wow how could you keep in touch with what the rest of Washington, DC may be thinking and doing, when you live up there in Alaska. Believe me, Alaska is like a microcosm of America.

What is so hard about this question? Even, if like Chance the Gardner, she doesn’t read a newspaper, she can say something like: I don’t have time to read the paper, but I watch CNN, or Fox, or check the internet, or get updates from my advisors….. She must be getting her news from somewhere, no? Just for a point of reference, I’m not running for public office, but I read, daily, two local papers (The Cleveland Plain Dealer, The News Herald), and the Wall Street Journal. I read Barrons on Saturday and Investors Business Daily on Monday. I check the Internet often, I watch the news – local and national – several times a day. I would have NO problem answering Katie's question. But Sarah Palin seems to be stumped by it. It’s almost as if she is afraid that Katie will use her answer against her. I don’t know how that could be, at least it couldn’t have been worse as how her non-answer is being used against her. (Or could it?)

I’ll be watching the Vice Presidential debate tonight, but not for reasons one might think. I’m watching it because I want to see how this “great debater” Sarah Palin will fare with Joe Biden when she actually has to provide a definitive answer to a question. So far, she avoids specifics so she can’t be pinned down to anything, turning avoidance of a question into an art form. Maybe she should watch the movie “Being There” before the debate and take a lesson from Chance – answer the question completely and honestly, and talk about television and gardening. There really is no way to fail if one can do that.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This woman amazes me. What a great comparison to Chance the Gardner. I recall watching a You Tube video of Gov. Palin where she stated that she really didn't know what was going on in Iraq because she was too busy running Alaska. Even if she just read or perused Us magazine or People Magazine she'd know about Iraq. She is a farce. She's like the female George W. Oy what a mess.

Thanks once again for your thoughts.