Palin- Better known than Britney Spears
By TOM BRENNAN
Some of the pundits are predicting that Sarah Palin will be removed from the Republican ticket before the election, but they're wrong. Unless she commits some unimaginable gaffe, Palin is as inevitable as tomorrow morning.
Millions of people know and love her right now and kicking Sarah off the ticket would be like kicking them off. You couldn't do it without losing those people.
Men are attracted to her initially by her good looks and women by the fact that she is an accomplished woman.
Granted those are superficial impressions, but that's what many political decisions are based on. When we have a nation of Palinbots, as we seem to be getting, nobody will listen to the dissenters.
Palin's overnight success is almost impossible to believe, but she is now . . .
better known than Britney Spears.
Some are saying that Joe Biden will clean her clock when they debate on Oct. 2, especially in the area of foreign relations. But she will be thoroughly briefed by the McCain people and, if some of her answers seem simplistic, millions of Americans will think: "that's the way I would have answered him."
What I find surprising is how much her resume is being overhyped by both pundits and the national media.
For one, she gets credit for fighting corruption in Alaska, but the only "corruption" battle I'm aware of is that she got Randy Ruedrich fired from his state job for sending a relative handful of Republican Party e-mails from his office to his home. From home he distributed them to party members.
Ruedrich is chairman of the Alaska Republican Party and was a member, with Palin, of the Alaska Oil & Gas Conservation Commission. I've known Randy since we worked together at ARCO years ago and he ain't no Boss Tweed.
And then there are her supposedly impeccable credentials as a conservative. Even conservative icon and columnist Ann Coulter talks in support of her. But conservatism as Palin practices it is what we call redneck socialism.
She jacked up taxes on the oil industry to a level certain to discourage investment, raising so much money the state didn't need it all. About $5 billion went into the bank and $1.2 billion went into a free money "energy rebate" to offset the high cost of gasoline and heating oil.
She is also trying to micromanage the private sector by giving $500 million to a Canadian company to do field research and engineering on a natural gas pipeline from Alaska to the U.S. Midwest. She is doing so — with the Legislature's concurrence — even though two major companies are already working on their own pipeline without a state subsidy.
Palin's designated choice, TransCanada, doesn't have the essential ingredient for a gas pipeline — gas. But BP and ConocoPhillips, the two owners of the private sector's Denali pipeline venture, own the leases that give them control over a substantial portion of the gas on the North Slope.
To be successful, TransCanada would actually have to convince BP and ConocoPhillips to commit their gas to TransCanada's line instead of their own.
Some of the Anchorage talk show hosts have been getting grief from listeners because they said Palin threw her daughter Bristol "under the bus" when she put out a press release about Bristol's pregnancy. But the radio guys are right.
The daughter's imminent childbirth would have gotten out — and was fairly well known already in Alaska — but the press release made the information public property and a hot topic of discussion everywhere. Even television's Dr. Phil weighed in on the subject yesterday.
Had the governor let nature and the media take their course, the information would have become widespread, but there would be strong motivation to treat it as a private family matter, an open secret, without the press release.
The only conceivable reason for the big announcement is that she (and the McCain people) wanted to squelch the rumor that Trig, the governor's son and a Down syndrome child, was actually Bristol's baby.
As it is, both Sarah and Bristol are getting credit, which they deserve, for not aborting either child. That is as strong a statement as could possibly be made in support of the party's pro-life, anti-abortion, base.
Palin's exposing her daughter's pregnancy in a high-profile way is a form of child abuse. But even there the positives of the situation will be lauded and the negatives mostly ignored.
Sarah recently asked an interviewer what the vice president does all day. Actually one of the veep's primary duties is, in case of national emergency, to fly to an undisclosed location.
I'm sure our girl could handle that just fine.