Monday, January 10, 2011


I'm not going to review every silly thing David Frum says in this post, in which he urges Sarah Palin to have a more humane, empathetic response to the Tucson shootings. I'll just respond to this admonition by Frum, addressed to Palin:

Think what you would like -- not your supporters -- but your opponents to say about you. "She was tough, but never a hater." "No matter how strongly she disagreed, she was always gracious." "I might not agree with her answer, but I could see she had thought hard about it." Then, having thought about it, go be that person.

Folks, do you really think this is what Palin wants her opponents to say about her? "She was tough, but never a hater"? "No matter how strongly she disagreed, she was always gracious"? (As for the bit about thinking hard, I'm not even going to go there.)

I don't think she wants to be seen as gracious, or as a non-hater -- certainly not by her enemies. I don't think she has any respect for her enemies; the only thing she wants them to say about her is "My God, I mocked that woman, and now I see, to my undying regret, that I was the idiot, and she was brilliant!"

Not being a hater? The whole point of Mama Grizzly-ism, of her caricature of bear behavior, is that enemies deserve nothing less than murderous wrath. Graciousness? Palin believes all liberals and Democrats play dirty all the time, so why should she be gracious, ever?

To give her her due, these attitudes aren't unique to Palin -- I think they're common to the entire right these days. Right-wingers believe their own rhetoric about the liberal totalitarian juggernaut led by people who will do anything to win -- yes, it's hilarious that they think that, isn't it? -- so they have no reason to be gracious across the aisle. Palin is merely the purest product of this thinking. Frum is wasting his time waiting for her to be something she's never been and never wanted to be.

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