"Sarah Palin talks to a young fan while at a book tour stop in Roanoke, Va in this Nov. 22, 2009 file photo." (Don Petersen/AP Photo)
“People aren’t going to like Sarah in the same way that an earlier generation liked Ike," writes Ilya Somin of The Volokh Conspiracy in a damned-by-faint-praise critique of Sarah Palin's Going Rogue. While admittedly "initially sympathetic to Palin," Professor Somin worries that she hasn't been doing her homework. We think he's missing a big — if below the radar for some Palinologists — part of the picture, discussed below, but first his take:
Ultimately, the problem with Palin is not that she is folksy, that she is religious, that she didn’t attend a prestigious university, or that she dislikes “East Coast elites.” These are all side issues. Like [John Mark] Reynolds, I also don’t believe that she is stupid. The problem is that she is ignorant about major national political issues, and has made no apparent effort to remedy that ignorance. That might be perfectly fine if she limited her ambitions to Alaska (she does seem to be knowledgeable about Alaska issues) or decided to be just a pop culture figure or activist. It is far more problematic if she intends to run for president.
Sarah Palin "Ignorant about major national political issues"? Busy with his scholarly nose in her book, the professor may have missed Palin's ongoing series of Facebook essays, op ed columns in the Wall Street Journal and other major old-media publications, as well as twitter messages to her nearly 34,000 followers, all part of a 21st-century stealth campaign of surgical strikes strategically timed to keep off balance her arch rival for the soul of the nation. Her latest, "Mr. President: Boycott Copenhagen; Investigate Your Climate Change Experts," posted yesterday, throws down the gauntlet as President Obama prepares to attend next week's UN Climate-Change Conference:
The president’s decision to attend the international climate conference in Copenhagen needs to be reconsidered in light of the unfolding Climategate scandal. The leaked e-mails involved in Climategate expose the unscientific behavior of leading climate scientists who deliberately destroyed records to block information requests, manipulated data to “hide the decline” in global temperatures, and conspired to silence the critics of man-made global warming. I support Senator James Inhofe’s call for a full investigation into this scandal. Because it involves many of the same personalities and entities behind the Copenhagen conference, Climategate calls into question many of the proposals being pushed there, including anything that would lead to a cap and tax plan.
It was the self-professed rodeo clown himself, Glenn Beck, who put his finger on Sarah Palin's "strategery" in a tweet last July:
Sarah P. Think like a Comm organizer.They were overloading the system. She is 6 steps ahead. VERY SMART lady.
As we blogged back then in "Sarah Palin = 1, Saul Alinsky = 0,"
Expanding beyond 140 characters, Palin recognized that her adversaries — from the dirt-digging thugs on the ground to the fancy lawyers and their bosses behind the curtain — were soldiers in an Alinskyesque, Cloward-Piven-inspired army of "community organizers" out to destroy her and the small-government, free-market principles she stands and fights for by sowing discontent from within the system. Understanding their modus operandi, she outfoxed them, quoting Gen. MacArthur as she exited stage right victorious [via goparchitect]: We are not retreating; we are advancing in another direction.
Her smarts are something you can't get from books.
Update: Credit where credit is due: Palin signals suppport via Twitter for RNC's response to President Obama's job summit ("while his EPA kills jobs, as Don Serber notes"):
GOP Chair Steele great msg re yestrdy's Job Summit; asks Prez 2 buckle down&work Commonsense Conservative solutions 4 jobs: no Stimulus Redux
Wonder if Chairman Steele is listening. Probably not. Last time he twittered was January 30.
Related must-read: Jeffrey Lord's "Biggest Story of 2009: The Rise of the Virtual Newsroom" in The American Spectator.
Update: "This is why the media is going nuts," says Laura Lee in the comments. Her daughter and son-in-law got up close and personal with Sarah, staying up all night waiting in line to meet her at the Norman, Oklahoma book signing: