Dan Drezner, after watching the Palin interview, asks a question:
Question to other GOP policy wonks: is it possible to support a candidate that campaigns on the notion that expertise is simply irrelevant?
The depressing thing is that this has been the GOP platform for years now. Expertise is overrated. Gut instincts, being “tough,” and being “decisive,” and not “blinking” are all far more important than actually knowing things.
Look at the thorough disdain for science the GOP has displayed for the past few years. Amorphous morals trump reason and science, and then those morals are conveniently discarded or altered when it becomes inconvenient for the GOP (see: family values, David Vitter).
The funny thing about all this is that the new savior of the GOP, Sarah Palin, is the one who is finally waking everyone up to what the Republican party really is all about. They are not serious about foreign policy (Fallows is just brutal). They are not serious (or honest) about scientific policy. They are not serious about economic policy (other than cutting taxes). They are not serious about an energy policy (just drill, baby, drill).
They just are not serious about, well, anything.
And Sarah Palin is the distilled essence of wingnut. She has it all. She is dishonest. She is a religious nut. She is incurious. She is anti-science. She is inexperienced. She abuses her authority. She hides behind executive privilege. She is a big spender. She works from the gut and places a greater value on instinct than knowledge.
And most dangerous of all, she is supremely self-confident to the point of not recognizing how ill-equipped she is to lead the country. This from last night stood out for me:
Charles Gibson, the interviewer, asked her if she didn’t hesitate and question whether she was experienced enough.
“I didn’t hesitate, no,” she said.
He asked if that didn’t that take some hubris.
“I answered him yes,” Ms. Palin said, “because I have the confidence in that readiness and knowing that you can’t blink, you have to be wired in a way of being so committed to the mission, the mission that we’re on, reform of this country and victory in the war, you can’t blink. So I didn’t blink then even when asked to run as his running mate.”
George Bush in a dress. The Palin interview should be a gut-check for Republicans and conservatives who think the last eight years has been a perversion of conservative principles. I am betting most of them will not even put down their pom-poms, though.