Tuesday, July 07, 2009


Ezra Klein seems puzzled by Bill Kristol's new Washington Post column:

... Kristol begins with a very simple claim: Sarah Palin should not be physically or legally stopped from running for president. "I am convinced, though, that [Palin] should have a chance to compete and make her case." Kristol writes. "In this, I seem to differ from many of my friends in the mainstream media and the Republican establishment."

Kristol obviously knows his friends better than I know his friends. But it sounds a bit like he's hanging out with fascists. I've been keeping a pretty close eye on Palin-related commentary and haven't heard anyone say that she "should not have a chance to compete and make her case." ...

..."Palin may not even run," he writes. "But the panic among mainstream media commentators and the GOP establishment suggests real worry that if she does, she might pull off an upset." ...

I'd say Kristol is doing two obvious things here.

First, as Ezra suggests, he's trying to make Palin more appealing to the rubes by selling them the line that (help help!) Palin's being repressed by insiders. (This message, from a consummate insider, reminds me of the famous 1968 ad for Columbia Records, aimed at the counterculture and headlined "But The Man can't bust our music." Columbia Records was, of course, owned by media giant CBS, so it essentially was The Man.)

Beyond that, Kristol's trying to sell the rubes the notion that there's a "good" GOP and an "evil" GOP. See, the GOP isn't toxic per se -- it just needs to get back to its "real" principles. For now, alas, it's under the temporary control of bad guys (who are so evil they would actually like to thwart the candidacy of this potentially incredibly popular candidate, even though -- or perhaps because -- she might be able to win the 2012 election).

I'm assuming that Kristol is just peddling this nonsense to help his dream candidate. I certainly hope he doesn't actually believe it. You should never get high on your own supply.

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