Sunday, March 31, 2013

Game Change

I watched the movie Game Change recently, which is about Sarah Palin.  The movie is widely considered to be a negative depiction of Palin, even by Palin herself (who, as far as I know, has not seen the movie).  And yet, I found myself actually liking Sarah Palin while I was watching it.  Not all of the time, mind you.  She could be pretty ruthless, as when she (on the movie) fired that one aide on account of a mistake.  But the Sarah Palin of the movie came across to me as someone who genuinely cared for her family, who depended on God, who was committed to certain principles, and who loved Alaska, enough to wear an Alaska pin and to care about the public opinion of those who were in her state (even though she later told Steve Schmidt, played by Woody Harrelson, that she did not want to go back to Alaska).

I loved the scene where, right before John McCain was about to introduce Palin to the American people, her family was telling each other to pray for her.  Piper Palin's remark to her mom that it was cheating for God to help Palin win the Vice-Presidential debate was cute.  I also liked the scene where Sarah Palin's husband Todd was giving her advice on how to perform in the Vice-Presidential debate.  He reminded her of a debate she was in when she was running for an Alaskan office, and one of her opponents was a policy wonk.  Todd said that nobody understood what that opponent was saying, but Sarah spoke straight to the people, and she won.  This scene really humanized Sarah Palin, I thought. 

Was Sarah Palin as uninformed as she appeared on the movie?  I'm somewhat doubtful.  There have been some insiders who have said that she wasn't that uninformed.  Carl Cameron's interview with Palin (see here and here) tells me that she has at least some public policy understanding.  Does that mean that I'm saying that Steve Schmidt and Nicole Wallace are lying?  Not necessarily.  Perhaps they got the impression that Palin was less informed than she truly was.  People sometimes assume that I know less than I do.  (And Palin haters will probably point to my post here to say that their assumptions are probably accurate!)  I do agree with Schmidt and Wallace, however, that Palin most likely wasn't informed enough to step into the Presidency.

8 comments:

  1. "genuinely cared for her family, who depended on God, who was committed to certain principles, and who loved Alaska, enough to wear an Alaska pin and to care about the public opinion of those who were in her state"

    Apart from 'depending on God' maybe, this applied to Nazis (Germany instead of Alaska).

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  2. So are these not admirable things, just because the Nazis did them, too?

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  3. I'm sure one could find similarities between anyone and the Nazis, if he or she looked hard enough.

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  4. Nazis were committed to certain principles, would you want to say it was commendable to be committed but just not to what the commitment was to? That looks rather empty to me. They loved Germany, but which Germany? Just as Palin might well love 'America', but the America she loves is an America vicious to many Americans and others. Which public does she care about? Not the downtrodden, which she wants to tread more on. She wants their votes, but not to then help them. In that her caring is so partisan, what does it show about the nature of her caring even for her family?

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  5. No, I didn't say the Nazis' commitment was commendable. I just didn't understand why you were bringing them into the picture. Even if there were Nazis who cared for their children, that doesn't mean someone else who cares for her children is not being admirable for caring for them. I think that comparisons to Hitler are so overblown these days.

    I can see your point a little more about her caring being partisan. I think that your analysis of her record is a little one-sided, for she did, after all, take on big oil when she was governor of her state, then provide Alaskans money to pay their electric bills. Maybe she cared for Alaskans, or maybe she was just playing good politics.

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  6. I was bringing them into the picture because they are a well-known paradigm case, and very useful because of that. I feel your judgement that bringing the Nazis in here is overblown is off the mark. Why do you not like Palin being compared to Nazis? What do you think her intentions are towards scores of millions of Americans, and hundreds of millions of people elsewhere? If you think her intentions are well meaning, then looking at what the outcome of what she wants to happen would be, then she can only be said to be stupid. The outcome of what she advocates would be immense suffering for a very large part of the world's population. Her politics is atrocious. Earlier examples of it, when the world might have moved in a better direction after the sixties, are Reagan and Thatcher. What they stood for and did was horrendous for human beings. And yet very many people are deluded about their status - such people as Reagan, Thatcher, national heroes and world figures, what's up with their worshippers? In saying Palin's America is vicious I have thought it best I should make it quite clear that I don't mean to condemn all America. There are good visions of what America can be. But Palin's vision of America is abominable.

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  7. I don't care for a lot of politicians being compared to the Nazis, including Obama. Hitler was extreme, so I don't think that Palin or Obama are remotely in his category.

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  8. I really don't want to continue this discussion, so I will shut off the comments for this post. Feel free to comment on other posts on my blog, Davey. But if you try to take this particular discussion to my other posts, I won't publish your comment.

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