Glenn Reynolds attempted to explain the lamestream media’s Palin obsession today.
NICK GILLESPIE: Palin’s Not Complicit in Loughner Shooting, but She Sure Ain’t Presidential, Either. Has any other public figure ever had to try to act “Presidential,” though, while being accused of complicity in mass murder?
On the other hand, if (as isn’t clear to me) she actually wants to be President, she’ll have to learn to be Presidential. Barack Obama has had his problems in that department, too, and unlike Palin, he’s had the benefit of a desperately supportive and eager-to-please mainstream media.
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Palin, on the other hand, has been royally screwed-over by that same media, and has managed to come back and beat them out again and again, from “death panels” to “blood libel.” And that engenders considerable sympathy. A musician friend of mine who’s not especially political emailed me the other day: “I don’t particularly care for Palin, but every time they do this to her, I find myself hoping she becomes President, out of pure spite.”
I understand the sentiment, but being screwed over by the media, while it may breed sympathy, isn’t a qualification for being President. Richard Jewell was royally screwed over by the media, too, but he didn’t belong in the White House because of it. if Palin is to be elected President, it’s not going to be on a sympathy vote.
But here’s what’s going on in the dance between Palin and what she calls the “lamestream” media: Every time they attack her, they wind up doing something that hurts them worse than it hurts her. She may not become President, and she may not even want to be President — though, regardless, it’s in her interest to keep everyone guessing as long as possible — but with little more than an Internet connection and Facebook she’s done more lasting harm to their position than anybody else. Last night Barack Obama threw them under the bus over the whole “rhetoric” question, just hours after she had managed to work them into a snarling frenzy with an Internet video. Even though it’s hurting them, they can’t — and I mean, literally, psychologically can’t — leave her alone. And she’s getting rich the whole time.
So I don’t know about “Presidential,” but who’s dumb, here?