Thursday, September 04, 2008

Noonan on Palin

Peggy Noonan's thoughts on Sarah Palin were published before The Speech last night but are every bit as relevant this morning. (A perfectly in-tune, stem-winder of a speech, in my occasionally humble opinion. You can find the full printed text or view the full video at CSPAN's site here.)

A few of Miss Noonan's insights that struck me particularly:


Because she jumbles up so many cultural categories, because she is a feminist not in the Yale Gender Studies sense but the How Do I Reload This Thang way, because she is a woman who in style, history, moxie and femininity is exactly like a normal American feminist and not an Abstract Theory feminist; because she wears makeup and heels and eats mooseburgers and is Alaska Tough, as Time magazine put it; because she is conservative, and pro-2nd Amendment and pro-life; and because conservatives can smell this sort of thing -- who is really one of them and who is not -- and will fight to the death for one of their beleaguered own; because of all of this she is a real and present danger to the American left, and to the Obama candidacy.

She could become a transformative political presence.

. . . . . . .

. . .in its involvement in this week's ritual humiliation of a 17-year-old girl, the mainstream press may seriously overplay its hand, and court a backlash that impacts the election.

***

I'll tell you how powerful Mrs. Palin already is: she reignited the culture wars just by showing up. She scrambled the battle lines, too. The crustiest old Republican men are shouting "Sexism!" when she's slammed. Pro-woman Democrats are saying she must be a bad mother to be all ambitious with kids in the house. Great respect goes to Barack Obama not only for saying criticism of candidates' children is out of bounds in political campaigns, but for making it personal, and therefore believable. "My mother had me when she was eighteen…" That was the lovely sound of class in American politics.


The rest of the piece is here.