Camille Paglia and the new face of the Republican Party

Camille Paglia produces an amazingly incoherent essay, with "facts" she appears to have pulled straight out of her butt:

But John McCain ...was... a candidate of personal honor ...

Uh, really? I thought his campaign was the absolute pits and about as "honorable" as a road race from the 1979 movie "Mad Max."

In the closing weeks of the election, however, I became increasingly disturbed by the mainstream media's avoidance of forthright dealing with several controversies that had been dogging Obama -- even as every flimsy rumor about Sarah Palin was being trumpeted as if it were engraved in stone on Mount Sinai. For example, I had thought for many months that the flap over Obama's birth certificate was a tempest in a teapot. But simple questions about the certificate were never resolved to my satisfaction. Thanks to their own blathering, fanatical overkill, of course, the right-wing challenges to the birth certificate never gained traction.

Obama's birth certificate was produced and a scan of it was featured on Daily Kos. There simply are no serious outstanding questions to be asked about it. Every possible objection has been voiced and answered. That's why "right-wing challenges...never gained traction." Paglia then extends her charge to cover the Ayers controversy.

As Media Matters points out:

The lack of media attention to the [G. Gordon] Liddy-McCain relationship is one of the clearest double standards in recent political history. McCain and the news media have devoted an extraordinary amount of attention to Barack Obama's ties to Bill Ayers, yet until last night, McCain hadn't been asked a single question* about his ties to Liddy, a convicted felon who has instructed his listeners on how best to shoot law-enforcement agents. [emphasis added]

How Paglia can claim that the traditional media "avoided" the Ayers question is a mystery to me.

How dare [Alaska Governor Sarah] Palin not embrace abortion as the ultimate civilized ideal of modern culture?

Who in the heck does?!?!? Abortion is an unfortunate necessity because unintended events happen and because abortion/carrying the child to term and giving birth to it is a yes/no, up/down choice. As the decision has to be made promptly, one specific person has to have the clear, unequivocal authority to make the final decision. There are those who would give that decision to someone other than the mother-to-be. Pro-choicers don't agree with those people. It's not a matter of a wonderful versus a horrible decision, it's a matter of who gets to make the call.

How tacky that she speaks in a vivacious regional accent indistinguishable from that of Western Canada!

Who in the heck ever complained about that? This sounds like those complaints that "liberals didn't like (the younger) George Bush because he spoke with a Texas accent." Excuse me, but Molly Ivins came from the same region and we loved her. Jim Hightower is also from Texas and he's reasonably popular as well. In no case did I ever see any examples of any liberals uttering any sort of quote that even vaguely attacked Bush for being from Texas. I'm not saying that no liberals have ever attacked either Bush or Palin for their regional accents, but I'd need to see some attributed quotes before I'm prepared to take anyone's word for it that any such prejudice has ever existed.

Liberal Democrats are going to wake up from their sadomasochistic, anti-Palin orgy with a very big hangover.

Again, this just causes me to go "Whu-u-u-uh?!?!?" Remember that Republicans have been equally rough on Palin, partly because her failure to answer simple questions embarrasses them and because they're (quite rightly) terrified that she'll be seen as representing the Republican Party.

Paglia claims that Palin is a naturally smart person. Sure, I'll agree with that, but the problem is not that she isn't smart. What she revealed in September was not that she wasn't smart enough to understand what the "Bush Doctrine" was, but that she just never cared enough about foreign policy issues to keep current on the disputes that were then taking place. Anyone even minimally paying attention (It was pointed out that both her running mate McCain and his opposite number Obama were able to answer the "Bush Doctrine" question immediately & correctly) should have been able to name a doctrine that's a foundation of Bush's foreign policy. By claiming that John Edwards was equally unprepared to be a Vice-Presidential running mate, Paglia shows that she's completely ignoring the question of how much Palin actually knows and cares about policy details.

Is Palin a "popular phenomenon"? Well, with the hard-core right wing she is, and that's why we on the left love the idea that Palin represents and is seen as the face of the Republican Party! Believe me, our support for her is entirely malicious.

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