September 18, 2008

Sean Hannity interviews Sarah Palin.

Video: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

Excerpts.

Commentary:

1. TBogg mocks Palin's speech. She does chatter through a lot of phrases that often don't hang together as sentences. And she gets words wrong, saying "lack" for "lax" (or "lacking") and "verbage" -- twice -- for "verbiage." This is a fair criticism. I get the feeling she tries to impress by speaking quickly and without the filler words like "uh" and "you know" that many people (including Barack Obama) use to steal the time to make better sentences. TBogg makes a wisecrack that has a reek of racism: "Her first language is Alaskimo."

2. Unbossed complains about the lack of content: "What? What? Government 'can play a very, very appropriate role'; 'when we see the collapse that we’re seeing today, you know that something is broken'; 'McCain has a great plan to get in there and fix it'. I know nothing more about their plans than when she started to 'explain' them." Me neither. There's a problem and they are going to fix it. Long answers boil down to that.

3. Andrew Sullivan detects a lie. Did she ask her daughters if they wanted her to run for VP or suddenly surprise them with the news? Then, in an update, he undetects a lie. That post is a good example of why you should hesitate to use the word "lie." I recommend language like "seeming contradiction" and allowing time for explanations to filter in before concluding "lie."

4. Lawyers, Guns & Money works the "pig" insult: "I would suggest here that Sarah Palin is pig-ignorant, but that would be an insult to pigs. Pigs, after all -- being pigs -- know what it is that they're supposed to do each day, what with the rooting and wallowing and squealing and such." Driving home the point that Palin is an idiot, LGM uses the nonword "spindler."

5. Personally, I found the interview tiresome. I think we are well beyond the yes-I-can-speak phase. And the fact is that she doesn't really speak very well when you start looking for structure and content. There's a superficial gloss to it that may be enough if you want to like her or think you need to give her a chance to settle into this new role. But now it's time to calm down and really communicate.

81 comments:

MadisonMan said...

I hear Tina fey doing Sarah Palin when I hear Sarah Palin speak. But that's my problem

Hoosier Daddy said...

I usually hear the grownups on the Peanuts when Obama speaks so I know what you mean.

Simon said...

"Andrew Sullivan detects a lie."

Is there some particular reason why Sullivan's views and analytical skills ought to be given any notice at this point? He's become the online equivalent of the drunk who yells at you from under the bridge on the walk home.

Cheryl said...

I saw that interview last night. I really, really want to like Gov. Palin, but I thought the interview was thin. I thought it was just me, but you put it exactly right, Ann. There wasn't much "there" there. And I'm saying that believing that Gov. Palin could knock heads in D.C. Man, they need to toughen up and tighten up. This is getting too scary.

vbspurs said...

This is a fair criticism.

Yes, it is.

I also noted the "oversight has been lack" slip and her mangled pronunciation of verbiage by eating the 'i'.

Democrats skewered her for being another "nucular" pronouncer, and I thought that was harsh then. Not so much today.

OTOH, she does have a funky accent, as we all know.

McCain's pronunciation of Washington (the dreaded Warrr-shington, argh, I hate that), which is not uncommon, gets a pass from most of us though.

However, this quote:

"Her first language is Alaskimo."

Would be unthinkable if she were Cherokee or Navajo. Since she's white, gloves are off.

(Have you noticed that Todd speaks a little more like a Native? He could be a Seminole, from down here in Florida)

Apropos to the Alaska racism, check out this HuffPo article about her "Style".

They do a before/after with a strange, Alaskan pink outfit in the before pic, contrasting her $2500 Valentino jacket which she wore for her RNC speech.

A series of comments tells you all you need to know about HuffPo commenter's lack of respect for Alaska:

- What is that pink thing anyway?

- It's horrible. I'd question her judgement right there. I wouldn't even wear that in the house.

- Alaskan fashion?


Can you imagine if someone said this on a right-wing site about Michelle? "Is that ghetto fashion"?

Unthinkable.

Simon said...

"[T]he fact is that she doesn't really speak very well when you start looking for structure and content. There's a superficial gloss to it that may be enough if you want to like her...."

Wait. Who does that remind us of? Oh yeah - that guy!

vbspurs said...

I really, really want to like Gov. Palin, but I thought the interview was thin

I thought she did just fine. Come on now, she is building up her confidence. Even Obama ran to Olbermann, before even the second part of the O'Reilly interview aired.

She gets Couric next, and despite the fact that she complained about Clinton getting sexist treatment, I have a feeling that one will be real tough. Much more than Gibson was.

vbspurs said...

Simon, don't you think there is some truth to:

Bush 43 = Obama = Sarah Palin.

Think about it.

Simon said...

Victoria said...
"[HuffPo] do a before/after with a strange, Alaskan pink outfit in the before pic, contrasting her $2500 Valentino jacket which she wore for her RNC speech."

They're idiots. The "before" photo shows her at a supermarket; the "after" photo shows her in the aftermath of perhaps the most important speech of her career. You might as well take a picture of Obama in WalMart in jeans and a t-shirt, put it side by side with a picture of him at his acceptance speech and say "LIKE OMG! Obama haz a STYLE CONSULTANT!!! lolz" (or however the Huffpo kiddies talk this week).

Arturius said...

I thought the interview was thin.

Of course it was thin, she was being interviewed by Hannity. Hannity of course is not going to play gotcha since he wants her to do well so he plays the syncophant. Gibson on the other hand wanted to see her fall on her face and deliberately tried to trip her up and only made himself look like an condescending ass.

Unfortunately that is the state of the media today as well as the voting public that tends to put a premium on a candidate who 'speaks well' over actual substance.

Mitch said...

And the fact is that she doesn't really speak very well when you start looking for structure and content.

As compared to whom, Barack "uh, uh my teleprompter uh isn't uh working" Obama?

Or Joe " Barack Obama is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy" Biden?

OK - Biden had structure and content.

vbspurs said...

Andrew Sullivan wrote:

So it's possible, I guess, that Palin had asked her girls about the general possibility of being asked to be veep earlier in the process and they had agreed in principle. But then they were surprised. In fact, on reflection, that makes sense of both stories. Stay tuned.

OMG! Stay tuned! More revelations about this EARTH-SHAKING story!

Keee-rist.

Simon wrote:

You might as well take a picture of Obama in WalMart in jeans and a t-shirt, put it side by side with a picture of him at his acceptance speech

You mean the Urkel photo of him riding his bike? ;)

I have to say this for the HuffPuff crowd -- they're not as rabid by a longshot, as the Kos Kidz. Some even chastised the author for writing that blogpost about the outfits. You won't EVER find anything positive like that on DK.

Simon said...

Victoria,
No, I don't think that's fair. To be sure, sloppy writing is often a sign of sloppy thinking. It's harder to gauge the connection between speaking and thinking. Bush has never struck me as being particularly bright or able to communicate. Obama's not a bad communicator - I don't think he's as good a speaker as his reputation suggests - but he doesn't have the intellectual heft of, say, a Maureen Dowd or Ann Coulter. Palin arguably mispronounces of a few words - "pundants," "nucular," "verbage" - and I can see how that could evoke memories of Bush. Nevertheless, the problem with 43 wasn't the mispronunciations so much as the deeper problem that they were symptoms of, a problem I don't see much evidence that 45 shares.

vbspurs said...

OMG! Stay tuned! More revelations about this EARTH-SHAKING story!

Oh, since the "Palin is a liar" meme is REALLY being pushed by all the Leftosphere, the latest one is that:

(a) She lied when she said she didn't listen to Tina Fey's impersonation. She said she had the volume down, but that the visual was spot on. They say no way would she not listen to it, so that proves she's a hyuggge liar.

(b) She is lying when she said she dressed up as Fey before. LIAR!

These people are the blogospheric equivalent of Stretch Armstrong.

MadisonMan said...

Alaskan fashion?

Can you imagine if someone said this on a right-wing site about Michelle? "Is that ghetto fashion"?


How are Alaska and the ghetto the same? What if they said Illinois Fashion (shocking!) or Chicago Fashion. That's a more appropriate comparison.

Simon said...

Hannity's first question in part 2 is pretty good. Her answer isn't bad, but it doesn't tackle the central question: with the Democrats in control of Congress, how are you actually going to enact a series of reforms that the Democrats, the party of the status quo, are desperately hostile towards? Is she going to urge McCain to impound appropriated funds, for example?

Simon said...

Actually, "status quo" might be too harsh - I don't doubt that Obama wants "change" so long as it's understood that "change" means "1967."

section9 said...

What, you haven't figured it out yet?

Palin is what Obama would have been had he gone back to Illinois to run for governor. That's why Barack is so spooked by the girl. She's his doppelganger.

Palin's just a bit behind Barack's rhetorical curve, is all. Give Palin 18 months on the trail and put her in the hands of a devious little weasel like David Axelrod and every latte-sipping, Volvo-driving, Facebook-posting, Bush-hating liberal on this board and on Kos itself will be comparing Sarah Palin to the Virgin Mother. And that's No Shit.

Trust me. Liberals just want a Leader Figure so they can join the Torchlight Parade. Obama understands that they've been flailing around for a Jesus figure since Kennedy was shot.

Faux Camelot, anyone? What Palin has to offer is authenticity, and that's what Obama falls short on.

Paddy O. said...

I have a feeling that one will be real tough. Much more than Gibson was.

Likely so. However, I can't help but think this might be Couric's great chance. Her ratings are terrible, she has lost a lot of her original fans, she has nothing that stands out.

And there are a whole, whole lot of people in this country who are very eager for Palin to be given a fair chance. Not fawning, but not dismissive. If Couric can pull off an interview that shows good questions, willingness to listen, and even a camaraderie between two ground-breaking women, she might find a renewed audience.

In other words, if Couric can be herself, as she showed herself to be on the Today show, she can really make a mark. Because, the fact is there are two women in that interview that all kinds of people are hoping will fail. Couric would do well to not feed into that.

But, I suspect she will, acting more the abusive spouse trying yet again to live up to her man's impossible expectations rather than standing on her own.

vbspurs said...

but he doesn't have the intellectual heft of, say, a Maureen Dowd or Ann Coulter.

Hehe. Actually, I wasn't really talking about their speaking abilities.

It's a deeper connotation, to do with the exact same reaction they evoke in people due to :

- Perceived extremism of ideologies
- Perceived communication failures
- Lack of experience
- Lack of heft
- Supporters turning a blind eye to their weaknesses

And many other similarities one can mention.

Peter V. Bella said...

I thought she came off as a very down to earth person. Plain speaking. What is the problem? Does every candidate have to sound like a refugee from a Toastmasters International camp? Only elite and effete snobs would care how she speaks or criticize each particular word she uses. The same effete ans elite snobs who want to tell everyone what to do and how to act; except you can enver understand a word they speak.

Look at Obama. Eh, huh, uh, em; over and over. Oh, sorry, he knows the proper pronunciation of those particular words.

They want polish. They want style. Poish and style are not signs of substance, they are only signs of polish and style.

erniecu73 said...

Simon,

A picture of Obama at WalMart would be a campaign killer. Just think about it. I doubt the guy has gone to one of those in decades if at all.

I haven't watched the interview, but I suspected from before that it would be softball. Just being honest. She will probably do better in a hostile interview, i.e. Couric. We'll see.

Accents don't bother at all. I would be a complete hypocrite if they did. I have one, a noticeable one although it is the "wrong kind" of accents. People have a very hard time trying to place it. I have gotten anything from "German" to "British" (?!) to "Italian or Middle Eastern", but very few people say "Cuban". Living in the midwest all these years may be one of the causes.

However, I do have an issue with natives who mispronounce. It's a huge pet peeve. I don't like it in any language. I have made a point (again, call me "elitist") to separate myself from most of my generation of Cubans. Most of my generation can barely pronounce three words correctly, and it irritates me to no end.

But I digress.

Simon said...

I mean, that's what this election fundamentally boils down to. The Democratic campaign is based on an unspoken model: "we were cheated of our rightful victory in 1968 - elect Barack Obama and we're going to pick up right where we left off." As I've said a couple of times recently, McCain-Palin evokes the election 140 years before that.

vbspurs said...

How are Alaska and the ghetto the same?

One is extremely white and rural, the other extremely black and urban.

And sometimes people feel able to demean something they don't know, because they do not risk correction or shame.

vbspurs said...

As I've said a couple of times recently, McCain-Palin evokes the election 140 years before that.

Hmm, not sure I follow. Are you suggesting a Thomas Jefferson-Sally Hemming ticket?

;)

Peter V. Bella said...

Biden misued the word patriotic when he meant punitive or punishment.

I guess effetes get those P words mixed up all the time.

MadisonMan said...

Peter, one of my biggest beefs about Bush is his horrid way of communicating. Imagine how much better the war in Iraq could have gone if Bush had coherently and consistently sold the idea!

That's why communication skills matter in a President.

Larry J said...

I thought she came off as a very down to earth person. Plain speaking. What is the problem? Does every candidate have to sound like a refugee from a Toastmasters International camp? Only elite and effete snobs would care how she speaks or criticize each particular word she uses. The same effete ans elite snobs who want to tell everyone what to do and how to act; except you can enver understand a word they speak.

No, I think the effete and elite snobs are mad at her because:

1. She didn't go to a Ivy League school so obviously she must be an idiot.

2. She doesn't see the East Coast in general and the Beltway in particular as the center of the universe. She not only lives in fly-over country, she celebrates it. What a rube!

3. She's a Republican so she must be a racist bigot homophobe fascist.

4. She's pro-life and lives it so she can't possibly be a real woman.

They act as if political power can only belong to them. Anyone who challenges their status-quo must be destroyed.

Simon said...

MadisonMan said...
"Peter, one of my biggest beefs about Bush is his horrid way of communicating. Imagine how much better the war in Iraq could have gone if Bush had coherently and consistently sold the idea!"

Seconded.

"That's why communication skills matter in a President."

And that's why, if I could appoint the President, Newt would be in charge!

MadisonMan said...

One is extremely white and rural

Yes, if you ignore the 30% of Alaskans who aren't white, you can say it's extremely white.

garage mahal said...

Peter, one of my biggest beefs about Bush is his horrid way of communicating. Imagine how much better the war in Iraq could have gone if Bush had coherently and consistently sold the idea!

If only we had people like Hannity and talk radio when we we're winning in Nam things could have turned out alot different.

vbspurs said...

Yes, if you ignore the 30% of Alaskans who aren't white, you can say it's extremely white.

And ghettos often have biracial, Hispanics and other not entirely "black" people in them.

Surely you grasped the point without the need to harp.

Henry said...

P.J. O'Rourke pointed out years ago (Parliament of Whores) that for a job that demands a lot of talking, politicians are incredibly wretched speakers.

The better ones can deliver a good speech by teleprompter. Obama is good at this. W really isn't that bad at the rote speech, if he's rested and paying attention.

Most are dreadful.

Ironically, some of the best speakers -- funny, glib, colorful -- come from the wacked out fringes.

Imagine a debate between Al Sharpton and Pat Buchanan, for example.

But, in the end, talking is overrated. A person can be a poor speaker and still be persuasive. Candor and accessibility go a long way, as McCain demonstrated in 2000. That won't work in this campaign, with the increased polarization of the pundit class, but it could well work for him as President.

Bush's speaking problem isn't his poor grammar; it is his disinterest.

Arturius said...

Peter, one of my biggest beefs about Bush is his horrid way of communicating. Imagine how much better the war in Iraq could have gone if Bush had coherently and consistently sold the idea!

I think that's fallacy. Had Bush channeled FDR and conducted weekly fireside chats he may very well have generated widespread domestic support for the war but it would have done little to change the situation on the ground. I doubt the Sunnis and AQ would have gone quietly into the night because Bush was a good communicator.

Zeb Quinn said...

In a pre-season football game kind of way, it's interesting to see how she does in a general way, but the fact is she's just getting warmed up. Hannity was not a test, he's just part of the warm up. We won't have a real measure of her until after the vice-presidential debate, and October 2 is only two weeks away. She's got only one chance.

I'm sure, her having been a television sports anchor, she worked at it, practiced, and developed the skill of "speaking quickly and without the filler words like 'uh' and 'you know'", necessary skills in that line of work.

The Drill SGT said...

Likely so. However, I can't help but think this might be Couric's great chance. Her ratings are terrible, she has lost a lot of her original fans, she has nothing that stands out.

The way Palin handles Couric is to be prepared on a number of levels.

Couric has two angles.

1. one is defensive. Couric has to prove she is tough like the boys and can dish it out. on this front, couric will come after palin on experience,etc. Palin has to be prepared with good Palin/Obama/McCain examples

2. since she is female, Couric can go on the offense on the female angle. how can you take care of your kids and be VP, ec stuff. on this line, Palin has to be prepared with the Couric bio. Working mom, 2 young kids, couric's husband dies of cancer, you coped, I can as well...

PS: Couric also has a Hockey connection

Henry said...

Simon, you're projecting Palin as the Wizard of Kinderhook. Doesn't work.

Obama actually went the Jackson route there -- picking a congressional insider to help him move policy.

vbspurs said...

4. She's pro-life and lives it so she can't possibly be a real woman.

Larry, in my opinion, this is the crux of the hatred.

That, and as "Hillraiser" Lynn Forrester de Rothsshild put it on Fox & Friends today, that she is a legitimate threat to Obama getting into the White House.

By way of example, do you think if McCain had chosen arch-social conservative Mike Huckabee, that the 2-week outrage, smear-a-thon would've been as hysterical?

McCain/Huckabee would've lost to Obama/Biden, for sure. I wouldn't have voted for that ticket, not on your life.

But McCain/Palin, fuggehdabouit.

vbspurs said...

Drill Sgt, remember when she grilled GHW Bush that time? It was nasty.

In 1992, when Couric was interviewing First Lady Barbara Bush at the White House as part of a celebration of the 200th anniversary of the Executive Mansion, President George H.W. Bush unexpectedly walked in. Couric ditched Mrs. Bush to grill the president on his role in Iran-Contra and his campaign attacks on challenger Bill Clinton.

I don't want Palin to go on The View, or on Oprah.

I think Oprah resents white people, and hates men. The View is just a cesspool of hate. There's no need to legitimise them in any way.

erniecu73 said...

vbspurs said...

I think Oprah resents white people, and hates men. The View is just a cesspool of hate.

8:44 AM


She's not very overt with the resent, but I have always felt she hates men. Remember when she basically declared every man a child molester?

The best representation of The View comes from Family Guy. It is pretty accurate.

Peter V. Bella said...

Larry J,

You left out a few things:

She thinks Malibu is a car.
She does not know what Brie is.
She does not know who Sean Penn is.
She probably thinks Barbara Streisand is an old, washed up reporter.

There is enough reason to hate her right there.

f said...

I think you're being unduly harsh. She sounds like a nobel laureate when compared to Obama. Certainly she's no Newt Gingrich, who can work any interviewer in the world into a dark little hole, but to me Obama sounds like charley from flowers for algernon. If she were a democrat, all of this, ALL OF IT, would not exist. You would not be able to hear yourself think for the praise screaming out of the MSM. But then, Obama never would have made this choice, would he?

vbspurs said...

She's not very overt with the resent, but I have always felt she hates men. Remember when she basically declared every man a child molester?

Right, she had that hotline for tips! It's beyond that though, for me. She never wastes an opportunity to demean men and their desires, and she also shows "houses of filth" etc. of white women with a glee which is really creepy.

Ironically, Palin was shown in a documentary saying that when she was first elected Governor, her sister shrieked that maybe she would be invited to Oprah now. Palin was gracious, and welcomed Oprah to Alaska should she wish to come, but said to her sister, "Hey, your sister just got elected Governor, shouldn't that impress you more than me possibly going on Oprah?".

The best representation of The View comes from Family Guy. It is pretty accurate.

YES. Too bad Youtube take out the Family Guy vids.

Quayle said...

Pronunciation and fluidity is everything.

In these hard times, it is absolutely crucial that people understand clearly when a candidate says that Obama’s tax program will enable the government to help you get a toaster.

Stinger Assassin said...

You are hard-core A.A....watching Sean Hannity interview Sarah Palin.

Republican or Democrat, that sounds excruciating.

The Drill SGT said...

f said...
I think you're being unduly harsh. She sounds like a nobel laureate when compared to Obama. Certainly she's no Newt Gingrich, who can work any interviewer in the world into a dark little hole, but to me Obama sounds like charley from flowers for algernon.


She sound more coherent than Pelosi, and Boxer for sure

erniecu73 said...

Victoria, I think Google Video has those episodes.

And you are probably right. I have never been an avid Oprah watcher, but I was particularly irritated by her campaign on the child molestation issue. Sadly, my hairdresser watches her religiously, and she always had the show on while I had my hair cut. I was at a boiling point.

madawaskan said...

I think Republicans might come dangerously close to what Democrats do because the media tends to give them an easier time...and that is to not give their candidates an honest assessment.

She did poorly-both times there is no getting around it.

Unless they admit that, are told that, and work on it-she isn't going to get any better.

Her comments about the AIG situation were-just bull and she doesn't do that well. She should have been honest and said that she was still evaluating the situation.

Hell I was pretty busy yesterday, she had to be busier and it took me hours to figure out how Bernanke structured the loan deal to AIG.

Instead she pretended to have the answers, and if the press said that she revealed a lack of even a fundamental knowledge of economics they'd be justified.

That's what she opened herself up to by BSing instead of being honest.

No that's not even "refreshing" in the outsider sense it was hubris which we have plenty of in Washington.

madawaskan said...

The Drill Sgt

She sound more coherent than Pelosi, and Boxer for sure

LOL!

Ya but cripes do Republicans have to use Democrats as their limiting factor?

Peter V. Bella said...

She sound more coherent than Pelosi, and Boxer for sure

I read an interview with Pelosi the other day. Her answers were very coherent. Yes. No. NO. NO. NO. Yes. NO. NO. NO.

UWS guy said...

If Sara Palin has a harvard law degree and Obama had done a stint at community college, I don't think many posters here would be arguing about intelligence.

Why pick that fight? Glen Lourey on his most recent blogging heads episode made an excellent point. Being perceived as 'smart' isn't a ticket to the white house so I don't think conservatives have to worry.

I know everyone wants Palin to be Newt Gingrich in a skirt, but I think you'll have to settle for GWB.

Richard Dolan said...

Lots of chatter today about whether Gov Palin pronounces words correctly, and whether she's too plain spoken for her own good.

The pronounciation bit is being used as a stand-in for intelligence. Her critics want to say, some do say, that she doesn't have the intellectual heft to take on a national role. That we've all heard that before about conservatives (Ronnie was supposed to be a dummy, as are Reps generally) is reason enough not to get too excited about it even if that isn't a complete answer. And in her case she has a record of taking on the good ol' boys and winning in Alaska that shows both force of personality and intelligence. Still it's not a long record, and she needs to do some more convincing. Just as Obama does with his even thinner record.

As for her plain-spokenness, there is no better way to communicate what you're thinking and what you want to do than to say it plainly, clearly, and concisely. But speaking plainly is much harder to pull off than its opposite, since it exposes any lack of clarity in one's thinking much more quickly than the complicated fog of words politicians usually spout when they have nothing to say. I admire Gov Palin's avoidance of jargon, her desire to speak plainly, to be understood. But it only works if she knows what she wants to say on a particular topic.

When she's talking about energy issues, for example, her approach works well (much better than Obama's) because she knows what she is talking about and what she wants to say. What she has to say on those issues sounds like practical common sense, which people having no ax to grind often find understandable and convincing.

In contrast, I think it was pretty clear that Palin doesn't have any clear idea about what has caused the turbulence in the financial markets, what its impact on the larger economy may be, or what should be done about it. Of course, the same can be said of McCain, Obama and Biden, none of whom has had anything sensible to say on the subject. And so, like McCain, Obama and Biden, Palin falls back on anodyne phrases -- the economy is in "crisis" (no it's not, more like a mild slowing; it's the financial markets that are in turmoil, and the two are quite different, but none of the politicians wants to say that, and Obama in particular is addicted to absurd word games on the subject); "stricter regulation" to root out greed and corruption is what's needed (oh, please, but they all feel compelled to say that); etc. It would be nice to hear a politician say that they know there's a problem, state the general principles they think should guide a solution, and admit that they aren't sure of the solution so instead they will leave the details to those who understand what's going on. Of course, none will. McCain came closest with his call for a "national commission."

The notion that it's time "to calm down and really communicate" is nice, but assumes that the politicians have something concrete to say. On lots of issues they don't. On energy issues and the need for "reform" in the way gov't does business and how to bring that about, Palin does and she is likely to "communicate" her ideas quite well. But a politician's speechifying is always "thin" when it comes to proposing solutions to complex and difficult issues. On that score, Palin is no different from the others.

What it all comes down to, I think, is whether her style alone undermines confidence instead of creating it. Does windy, polysyllabic bloviating, all properly pronounced, generate more confidence in the speaker and his proposed "solutions", than does plain spokenness coupled with the occasionally mispronounced word? Are women preceived differently and so have to take that into account in considering what style works best in communicating strength and confidence? Bear in mind that all we are talking about here is style.

Simon said...

UWS guy said...
"I know everyone wants Palin to be Newt Gingrich in a skirt, but I think you'll have to settle for GWB."

How can you possibly justify comparing her to W? They're both officeholders with an R after their name. That strikes me as about it. Bush is a Wilsonian internationalist, a national security hawk, a moderate on most issues but social conservative, and in all events a believer in big government - somewhat closely akin to a neoconservative, actually - but basically a centrist. Palin is a western conservative with populist and a sort of Gingrich-style reformist. I see no basis for the comparison.

vbspurs said...

Richard, I think you may enjoy a blogpost I wrote about Palin being interviewed on the radio.

Part 1

Part 2

I wrote:

The vibe she gives off when she's amongst her own in Alaska is simply wonderful. Unlike Barack Obama, her near contemporary, she can sound exceptionally youthful but it's not forced like his recent Baptist preacherman cadence.

She can also surprise in her slang terms.

Ruth Anne already mentioned her usage of words like awesome, cool, but here you will hear her say, "they rocked!", "BS", "you guys", "you looked sharp", "give a shout out" in the space of 9 minutes.


But it's not to everyone's taste, especially people who already tear her down for not being quite the thing, intellectually.

UWS guy said...

My Gingrich/Bush analogy is thus:

Gingrich is a policy wonk (and we all know he was a college prof.) who thinks with his head (both heads...) Palin mimics Bush by being a "gut" thinker. Hell, McCain is a gut thinker...

At least Bush has Cheney who is a head thinker to balance out his "gutology".

OT: Dowds column yesterday. McCain+Palin=McPain. haha.

William said...

I think Biden is the master of saying nothing in a knowledgeable and authoritive way. It's one of those skills--like being able to whistle Mozart--that are admirable without in any way being enviable. There are a lot of things that Palin does not know about. She has not yet mastered the art of saying nothing in a well thought out way....In the dark, hovering presence of Gibson, one wished to reach out and protect her. She did not look particularly good in that interview but she excited one's sympathies.... Hannity, on the other hand, was feeding her pablum. When she smeared it all over her face, the messiness looked totally hers and hers alone. The interview was not a disaster, but she did not look Presidential....Just recently I have been feeling more like Willie Loman than Gordon Geiko. Her answers about the financial crisis seemed vague, like she was looking for some all purpose cliche that we could all rally behind. Well, let it go. All the smart guys on CNBC are just as confused. And unlike Sarah Palin I do not trust their good will or sincerity.

jdeeripper said...

Althouse - I think we are well beyond the yes-I-can-speak phase. And the fact is that she doesn't really speak very well when you start looking for structure and content.

Ruth Anne already mentioned her usage of words like awesome, cool, but here you will hear her say, "they rocked!", "BS", "you guys", "you looked sharp", "give a shout out" in the space of 9 minutes.

Right. But this is hardly going to alienate the working mom vote in Pa, Ohio, Michigan and Minnesota.

They know McCain is running for the top job and they are enthusiatic to see and hear from a young woman they identify with.

And remember, Palin has been told to keep her interviews thin to avoid Bidenitis.

UWS guy said... OT: Dowds column yesterday. McCain+Palin=McPain. haha.

OMG. That's like sooooo cute and stuff. That's like I mean sooooo true.

And you know Osama bin Laden = Obama bin Biden..........OMG I can't believe I wote that.

Rich B said...

I just watched Parts 1 and 2 and after reading the post and comments, I was pleasantly surprised. She was well spoken, she spoke with passion and animation. She understands that taxation means taking resources away from those who have produced them - they don't just magically appear. The government's gain is a taxpayer's loss.

Scoffers, scoff all you like. She's just getting warmed up.

Simon said...

UWS guy said...
"OT: Dowds column yesterday. McCain+Palin=McPain. haha"

Well, that's certainly the level of analysis I had in mind when I said above that I didn't regard Obama as rising to the intellectual heft of a Maureen Dowd.

chickenlittle said...

Madisonman said: Peter, one of my biggest beefs about Bush is his horrid way of communicating. Imagine how much better the war in Iraq could have gone if Bush had coherently and consistently sold the idea!

I disagree with you MadisonMan. If Bush had clearly articulated the game plan, the allied forces would have attracted less al Qaeda to Iraq for subsequent slaughter. The conflict, as bad as it was for us, would have been much bloodier if Bush had revealed the plan, and the bulk of Jihadi fighters had stayed in their home countries, or stayed holed up with the leadership in Pakistan. As it happened an entire first wave of young enemy were destroyed. Sure they'll be back, they've promised after all. And that may be Obama's nightmare if you so will it.

I certainly hope you're not the type who believes that wars should be openly prosecuted on the pages of the NYT and WaPo.

HumbleEerFan said...

Infantile post for infants.

MadisonMan said...

chickenlittle, I'm not saying Bush should have been articulating the war strategy. I'm saying he should have been articulating the background info -- the why are we here type stuff. That was very poorly done. Were we there for WMD? To prevent the mushroom cloud? To take democracy to the Mideast? It seemed like the reason changed. How can a person understand and support such an enterprise? You can do it blindly if you have absolute faith in your governemnt. I'm too cynical to have that kind of absolute faith.

Now, it's possible that as you suggest this poor articulation was just part of a master plan to embolden AQ into attacking because AQ knew that sustained bloodshed might sap American resolve. And AQ did not foresee that Iraqis would turn on AQ and vastly snip the integrity of AQ as a terror group. Yes, a consistent message causing a unified America behind troops in Iraq might've driven AQ underground and made it harder to ferret them out. And maybe then AQ would still be more at large. Maybe that was Bush's plan from the start.

It's hard to determine how alternate histories pan out.

Steve said...

One of your tags on this story about Gov. Palin is "pig?"

Nice.

Vern said...

Plain speaking exposes your position. The difference between GWB's and Palin's "plain speaking" is that GWB's thinking was one of loyalty and stubbornness - too long to adapt to being wrong with the emergence of insurgency in Iraq or Katrina for example.

Palin's plain speaking works because her track record is one of readily changing her position to be the right position or at least the accepted position of the public.

While GWB would have patted some bridge supporter on the back right up until the day it crashed, Palin came around quickly once in office and killed the project before it could embarrass her. Similarly, she crossed over to Dems to purge some the Republican largess in AK.

Far from the ideologue she is made out to be, she takes popular positions and works only on those.

Methadras said...

I like Sarah Palin and she is going to make holding my nose to vote McCain/Palin a lot less painful. However, I'm starting to see the veneer crack a little bit in terms of her interview with Hannity (whom I detest), in that she is sounding rote, repetitive, and a lot less sure about herself. She needs to switch gears into the substantive phase, dig into the meat of the issues of the hows and whys of what she and McCain are going to do. Now is the time to do it. We know she took on the big boys, but how is this team going to shake up Congress and purge special interests?

Kirk Parker said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kevin said...

If you watch her facial expressions and listen to the tone and cadence of her speech rather that read the transcript (reading excerpts is especially bad), she comes across well. She's a 'wholistic' communicator, much like Obama; you have to 'hear' and 'see' what she says. This makes it difficult for people who are left-brained, and explains why some people say there's no substance to what she (and Obama) say.

Kirk Parker said...

This furor over "verbiage" is nothing. This is just a West Coast pronunciation. The American Heritage dictionary gives it as a second choice (vûr'bē-ĭj, -bĭj, let's see if that shows up OK in your browsers...)

Same thing with foliage--do you put 3 syllables into it? We don't.

Kirk Parker said...

Simon,

Maureen Down has intellectual heft? Really?????
.
.
.
.
Oh, wait--I see what the confusion is. I wonder if that NY Times columnist knows that somebody else is using her name...

Kirk Parker said...

"Couric can go on the offense on the female angle. how can you take care of your kids and be VP?"

Totally easy for Palin to answer. Just glare and say, "And you, a woman!!!"

(Well, the old "and you, a law professor" works so well against our hostess, doesn't it?)

LoafingOaf said...

"Peter, one of my biggest beefs about Bush is his horrid way of communicating. Imagine how much better the war in Iraq could have gone if Bush had coherently and consistently sold the idea!"

Tony Blair is a good communicator and he couldn't sell it in the UK. Bush actually DID sell it to the majority of the American people, but he lost us mid-mission. Once the WMDs didn't turn up, everyone started realizing we were in bad hands.

LoafingOaf said...

"Peter, one of my biggest beefs about Bush is his horrid way of communicating. Imagine how much better the war in Iraq could have gone if Bush had coherently and consistently sold the idea!"

Tony Blair is a good communicator and he couldn't sell it in the UK. Bush actually DID sell it to the majority of the American people, but he lost us mid-mission. Once the WMDs didn't turn up, everyone started realizing we were in bad hands.

Larry J said...

Larry J,

You left out a few things:

She thinks Malibu is a car.
She does not know what Brie is.
She does not know who Sean Penn is.
She probably thinks Barbara Streisand is an old, washed up reporter.

There is enough reason to hate her right there.


Well, a Malibu is a car. It's also a left-wing city. Which do you think is more important?

She may or may not know what Brie is but she knows how to hunt and fish. I wager that she knows far more about the environment and wilderness than any of the metrosexual Earth First or Green Peace crowd. In Alaska, humans are part of the food chain (and not the top). Put Sarah Palin and some of her critics in the Alaskan wilderness for a week. End the end, she'd walk out on her own with a new moose coat. They'd end up as bear excrement.

She may know who Sean Penn is, and can quite likely kick his butt.

As for Barbara Streisand isn't an old, washed up reporter. She's an old, washed up singer and left wing loon.

roa said...

Here's Palin's statement on AIG:
“Disappointed that taxpayers are called upon to bailout another one,” she said. “Certainly AIG though with the construction bonds that they’re holding and with the insurance that they are holding very, very impactful to Americans so you know the shot that has been called by the Feds its understandable but very, very disappointing that taxpayers are called upon for another one.”

Biden on AIG. He blamed the problems on tax cuts, which makes no sense at all:
We should try to correct the problems that caused this. And what’s caused this? The profligate tax cuts to the very, very wealthy that John wants to continue. What’s caused this is the failure to have regulation so that, in fact — John talks about these CEOs getting these big bailout packages.

Tell me which is worse?

Simon said...

Kirk Parker said...
"Simon, Maureen Down has intellectual heft? Really?????"

Not so much. That's kind of the point.

Bruce Hayden said...

Having been through ToastMasters, I did notice that Gov. Palin seemed to speed up whenever she was about to insert an "uh", etc. filler.

Various ToastMasters clubs have different ways of addressing this common speaking problem. We had a bell, and my father's club had a clicker. Someone would have a duty to ring the bell or click whenever the speaker was using filler.

I would suggest that Obama has probably not had this training, since he seems unaware of this flaw at the time he is speaking, esp. contemporaneously. Palin may have had it, since she seems aware of her "uhs" and seems to be trying to compensate for them.

The problem with Obama is that, at least with my couple of years in ToastMasters, most of the time he speaks poorly, at the level of someone who has just joined a ToastMasters club and hasn't really started their training.

Let me admit though for the record that while I still hear "uhs" and other filler in my own and others' speech, I have lost most of the skills that I had gained through ToastMasters, in the maybe eight years since I last participated.

Jon said...

Althouse said: Andrew Sullivan detects a lie. Did she ask her daughters if they wanted her to run for VP or suddenly surprise them with the news? Then, in an update, he undetects a lie. That post is a good example of why you should hesitate to use the word "lie." I recommend language like "seeming contradiction" and allowing time for explanations to filter in before concluding "lie."

Sullivan is now re-detecting the undetected lie, declaring it "settled".

However, unless I'm missing something, and I don't think I am, he is simply demonstrating failed reading comprehension. He seems to be basing his claim that Palin could not have asked her daughters if they wanted her to run, on the following quote from the McCain campaign (he italicizes "for the first time"):

"While there, Governor Palin's children, who had been told they were going to Ohio to celebrate their parents' wedding anniversary, were told for the first time that their mother would be a nominee for Vice President of the United States of America."

In fact, of course, "WOULD be a nominee" does not in any way preclude the daughters from having been told earlier that she MIGHT be a nominee.

Simon said...

Bruce Hayden said...
"I would suggest that Obama has probably not had this training, since he seems unaware of this flaw at the time he is speaking, esp. contemporaneously."

Ding! Extemporaneously.

Sorry, couldn't resist.

blake said...

If only we had people like Hannity and talk radio when we we're winning in Nam things could have turned out alot different.

Yes, and what a tragedy that would have been. Sure, our allies were slaughtered and our credibility shot, but the Left would have lost an opportunity to teach a valuable lesson about American imperialism!

Just imagine, if the anti-war types hadn't created the impression that we had lost militarily, Osama might have had to drop Vietnam from his talking points.

Jake said...

Can we really have a vice-president who hasn't mastered basic English grammar?

Richard said...

"[...] now it's time to calm down and really communicate."

Ann, Ann, Ann. It's a presidential race. You know darned well that real communication is off limits, and that goes for all the candidates. Real communication is far too risky for any of them to try and pull off. So please, don't hold Palin to a different standard. Let her spin like we allow the others to spin.