This came up last Sunday, and it really was too important to not acknowledge. It appears that once again, guest host Jake is thinking with his little Tapper and talking up the phenomenon of Sarah Palin's framing of the health care debate.
Anne, Governor Palin is one of the -- the subjects of your book. My father-in-law, who is a conservative from Missouri, referred to Governor Palin in an e-mail to me earlier this -- this week as genius, controlling the world from her Facebook page.
And it is remarkable that a woman who left the governor's office and everybody was like, all of the intelligentsia in Washington was like, "She's over. She's through." She, with one Facebook entry, as Ed said, really shook up the debate.
Uh no, Jake. What actually happened is you and the rest of the media decided to put her in the debate. THE MEDIA decided to lend her the gravitas to be part of the discussion, no matter how factually wrong, loony and just plain stupid her comments were.
Let me use an example: At the foot of Market Street, right next to the cable car stop, there sits a man. This man is such a fixture at this location that the bench on which he perpetually sits is curved to his shape. I saw him daily as I went to work fifteen years ago and he sits there still. He plants himself on that bench and mutters and rambles with the occasional shout about how the government is trying to control us.
Now unless you're a San Francisco native, you wouldn't know about this man. He certainly wouldn't be given a multi-level national media platform to unleash his crazy rantings; they have no basis in fact and are the byproduct of an unhinged mind.
But you know what? What he yells out to the crowds rushing past him are no more loony than what regularly comes out of Sarah Palin's mind and mouth: The government is dangerous. They lie to you. They want to control you. They want some of you dead. It's all a plot against those who REALLY understand their agenda.
But no one ever repeats what this man has to say on national or cable airwaves. No one ever interviews him. If he has a Facebook page, no one pays attention to it. And no one--but no one--would ever claim him to be a genius nor controlling the world (as jingoistic as you can get there) by his mad rantings.
And yet, you--ABCCBSNBCMSNBCCNNFOXWaPoNYT--love to highlight the lunatic ravings of Sarah Palin. You give her the spotlight, you allow her to spew her mutterings without context, correction or even the simple courtesy to your viewers of remarking on its truthfulness. You have extended her the gravitas to even be considered a leader of her party instead of a person desperately in need of therapy.
This is not a failure of Sarah Palin. I'm sure that man on the bench would take full advantage of the attention Palin glories in too. This is a failure of the media TO DO THEIR DAMN JOBS.