Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Lightweight Champion

It is by now an article of faith among Republicans that Sarah Palin's 20 months as governor of Alaska and six years as mayor of Wasilla (pop. 8471) give her an experience edge over Barack Obama. Obama, they point out, has no executive experience, ergo Palin is more qualified to be president and plenty qualified to be vice president. It's a familiar right-wing gambit, in which they speciously confer equal stature on two competing ideas and then stack the deck in favor of their side.

But are Palin and Obama of equal stature? Eman of Daily Kos thinks not, and lays out a side-by-side comparison that proves his point. What emerges is a considerable intellect on the one hand and a probable lightweight on the other. Which is my real objection to Sarah Palin: Her presence on the Republican ticket is an endorsement of the cult of stupidity that has engulfed the Oval Office for the past eight years.

Consider her response to a question about teaching Creationism in schools:
Teach both. You know, don't be afraid of information....Healthy debate is so important and it's so valuable in our schools. I am a proponent of teaching both. And you know, I say this too as the daughter of a science teacher. Growing up with being so privileged and blessed to be given a lot of information on, on both sides of the subject -- creationism and evolution. It's been a healthy foundation for me. But don't be afraid of information and let kids debate both sides.
On surface, what could be more fair-minded? The problem is that there's no equality of ideas at work here, a distinction she can't seem to grasp. Nor does she appear to understand that a scientific theory is not an opinion: It's an explanation that attempts to unify disparate empirically observed facts, and that is stated in a way that can be empirically disproved. There is no factual information about Creationism. Neither it nor its Trojan horse -- Intelligent Design -- have ever been formulated in any way that invites scientific research: There is literally no Theory of Intelligent Design, even if its proponents blather about "design theory."

By contrast, Darwin's Theory of Natural Selection (which is what she means by "evolution") has been challenged and tested for more that 150 years, with literally billions of data points resulting. And every test has confirmed his theory, filled in gaps, and widened our understanding of biology, chemistry, statistics, and the origins of life. It is an accepted scientific fact that has resulted in tremendous scientific advances.

Consider Palin's statement again with the context changed and you will see how ridiculous it is:
Teach both. You know, don't be afraid of information....Healthy debate is so important and it's so valuable in our schools. I am a proponent of teaching both. And you know, I say this too as the daughter of a science teacher. Growing up with being so privileged and blessed to be given a lot of information on, on both sides of the subject -- flat earth and round earth. It's been a healthy foundation for me. But don't be afraid of information and let kids debate both sides.
From a scientific perspective, this statement and her actual allegation have the same value, which is to say none whatsoever. And yet, this person is about to be the Republican party's nominee for vice president.

The comparison of her and Obama is typically specious. It's also typically lazy of the MSM to consider it outside of the greater context of their respective abilities and not ask the real question: What could possibly have possessed John McCain to select a running mate so insubstantial that she makes Dan Quayle look like Jean-Paul Sartre?...

While governor, Palin vetoed a funding to help unwed teen mothers find housing...

John McCain sez "No fair! Stop picking on me! Leave me alone!"...


Conservative pundits Mike Murphy and Peggy Noonan exchange their true feelings about Palin when they thought the mike was turned off:

5 comments:

Sylvia K said...

I simply don't understand how people can listen to all of this and still say, "they'll make a great team, she's the perfect pick". Still, I'm not surprised at anything the Republicans do anymore. I've been really troubled seeing all the police, protestors, it's like the 60s all over again. We are SO going backwards!

mouse (aka kimy) said...

the cult of stupidity worked so well for the republicans in 2000 with w.... and I guess are expecting the same this time around.

with the pick of palin, I'm afraid my nickname for mccain might be switching once again to mcinsane.... mcsame, mcnasty, mcinsane....

did you happen to catch friday's bill maher (hbo)... guy knows how and where to zing.

save us....

Renegade Eye said...

She has done nothing to help McCain. His numbers didn't move.

Radish King said...

Do you really think republicans read your blog?

scripto said...

Here's some more good stuff:

""God's will has to be done in unifying people and companies to get that gas line built, so pray for that," she said."

Who knew that the Big Guy wanted to get in the construction business? And the whole Iraq thing? - that was God's idea. He's on our side.

I wouldn't underestimate her. Another Manchurian Candidate like the bots from Patrick Henry