The fake, sing-songy voice has me reaching for the remote in minutes. I am not sure what it is, but she seems to put the emphasis on the wrong word in a sentence, and combined with her fake folksiness, it drives me insane.
Right now she is giving an energy speech. I doubt she will point out that the sum total of her energy policy in Alaska is shaking down the oil companies and building a fantasy pipeline to nowhere.
What the hell was McCain thinking with this pick?
I’m shocked you’ve lasted this long. I reach for the mute button the minute either McCain or Palin come on TV. It makes watching Olbermann and Rachel Maddow interesting. Mute, unmute, rewind to get what they said, mute again, repeat…
What comes first? Patting herself on the back for her fairy-dust pipeline-to-nowhere, or dishonestly claiming that Alaska produces 25% of the U.S.’s energy?
Far Left American Hater Incertus
I doubt the thought process went much farther than "Palin’s got boobs–so did Clinton. PUMAs will vote for her."
I’m glad it’s finally been said. Her voice always reminds me of the two bimbo waitresses in "Fargo", and to hear that applied to politics is like fingernails on a chalkboard.
I suppose the reason we haven’t discussed Palin’s corrupt pipeline deal yet is, why bother?
Comrade Mary, Would-Be Minion Of Bad Horse
Minutes? Must be that famous West Virginian toughness. I turn off or mute MSNBC if one of her endlessly rotated speeches comes on. I can’t stand McCain’s voice any more, either, and at one point during the primaries, I couldn’t listen to Hillary Clinton in speech mode, though she sounded fine in conversational mode. (I’m cool with her now.)
But Palin’s tone of voice, as well as her pitch, the grating accent and the faux-folksiness, combined with the crap she speaks, are simply intolerable. The weird thing is, I’ve caught video of her in pre-campaign times and she sounded quite pleasant and competent. I guess the shrieking, nasal diatribes work for the base, that’s all.
Weird. I have exactly the same experience as John when I listen to that woman. Which makes me wonder, what is wrong with the people who like her — what kind of inexplicable creatures are they?
I read that she had a voice coach for the convention speech, both to teach her how to pronounce words like "nuclear" correctly, and because her voice tends to get that "squeaky register."
She seems to get squeakier and screechier with time.
Jay Andrew Allen
Don’t you listen to Rush? Thinking is for intellectualoids. Mavericks don’t think, they do.
And also, the great Ronald Reagan.
I instantly mute Palin as well. That accent is just ridiculous. Has anyone listened to enough pre-VPILF audio of her to say if she has amped it up since her selection? Does the rest of her family sound the same?
Glad to hear it’s not just me, either. Neither my husband nor I can stand hearing her. I think the worst thing is when she puts on the "aw shucks, li’l ol me" faux-cutesiness, all while saying the most reprehensible things about her opponents.
And the winking! For fuck’s sake, Sarah, we get it. You think you’re as adorable as Shirley Temple shitting a rainbow. Give it a fucking rest, already.
same thing here. NPR played a clip of her this morning and i literally cringed when she started. i lasted about three seconds before changing the station.
she sounds completely insincere, and smarmy, and condescending. she’s a fraud.
there’s a clip on YouTube of a debate during the governor’s race. she doesn’t do any of that shrill, fake, youbetcha crap. her accent is basically neutral and she speaks like a normal person. she actually sounds intelligent.
The Other Steve
Ask John about whether or not he ever listened to GW Bush.
My guess is no, he never listened to him. He just knew in his heart that he loved him and worshipped him and wanted to hug him and kiss him and call him George.
That’s how Palin supporters make it through life.
I heard a short snippet of Palin on NPR this morning and I had much the same reaction to that high-pitched, sing-songy voice of hers. My god. I’d rather listen to Bush some more for the next four years than Palin for one more minute.
Bush in lipstick is just a little too facile, I’m sure, but for the life of me I can’t figure out any difference between the two of them that is bigger than lipstick. Her hair, maybe. But, yes, the voice has exactly the same effect on me that Bush’s voice has.
Juan del Llano
Hell, I haven’t watched any TV news for over 10 years. I would mute any of those bastards in an eyeblink.
But the McCain choice is pretty simple to explain: he’s an idiot. Any explanation you can come up with reduces itself to the same thing. Run with the ever-lovely Republican base? Hah! Nominate an "energy expert"?? Double-hah! Even if he was just cock-teased, he’s STILL an idiot. He’s just an old, angry, rich idiot. A better question is, what was the party thinking?
I’ve already voted, but it’s not enough. I want to vote every day.
You sound like how I’ve been reacting to Dubya. His fauxsy speech and his inability to speak in complete sentences has driven me nuts for years.
Exactly what many have been wondering about the GOP with Bush in 2000.
>>What the hell was McCain thinking with this pick.
TITS OR GTFO
Obama’s new ad is absolutely delightful.
CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII
He was thinking he’d get the fundies, a bunch of Hillary supporters and hopefully a good dollop of everything in between.
It didn’t quite work out that way.
McCain said: "get me a woman"… so they did. ;)
I have the same reaction to the current Oval Office resident. Even when he’s speaking reasonably and isn’t being condescending to people smarter then him, I have this visceral reaction to his tone and his pronunciation. Click, off goes the radio.
I wasn’t too crazy about Bill Clinton’s voice either, even if in retrospect I miss it a little. Bush the elder was a caricature of himself. The last President or Vice President whose voice I really enjoyed was ol’ you-know-who.
Which is all to say, though Obama’s speaking style is not a reason I support him, it’s a happy side effect.
Comrade Mary, Would-Be Minion Of Bad Horse
Yes, especially because it’s chockful of McCain and Palin but you don’t hear a word from either one.
Listened to the energy speech/blarney and found myself mildly surprised that she can sound like an adult when she isn’t putting on the folksey, backwoods girl, maverick tripe. Still can’t stand her but she doesn’t have to be a grating, chirpy schoolgirl if she doesn’t want to be.
@Krista: Yeah, that ad is all kinds of awesome. McCain really hoist himself on his own petard by choosing Palin.
she doesn’t do any of that shrill, fake, youbetcha crap.
Thanks. Tapes of pre-1999/2000 Bush are similar – less fake drawl, longer sentences.
But since roughly half of Americans choose presidents like they choose homecoming queens, dumbing your candidacy down is not entirely irrational.
CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII
Krista apparently had her Wheaties this morning.
j/k there hon. I have to say that’s awfully imaginative language you had there.
South of I-10
I pretty much quit watching political coverage on TV. I still read it, but watching any coverage just made my blood pressure go up. It’s not like I am going to change my opinions at this point. But then again, I am only a prole in the coming socialist, totalitarian revolution.
We don’t talk politics much around our 5-year-old, and she’s never heard the name Sarah Palin from us. But yesterday morning someone on the car radio mentioned John McCain.
"We don’t like him." I heard her intone from the back seat. "McCain has a very bad replacement-president-person."
He was obviously thinking "Nice rack. I wonder if I could tap that."
I think I saw this on The Daily Show weeks ago? Can’t swear to it, but I do recall thinking it was a very good demonstration of her intermittent speech patterns, shall we call them.
Sarah Palin and the Incredible Disappearing Accent
South of I-10
@Lightsleeper: I knew it was time to turn off the TV when my 4 year old said, "Barack Obama? We love Barack Obama!"
"But the McCain choice is pretty simple to explain: he’s an idiot"
I wonder if it has something to do with being a jet pilot like Bush.
(Bush Sr was a pilot too, but not a jet pilot. He flew the relatively leisurely-paced WW2 planes.)
Comrade Mary wrote: " and at one point during the primaries, I couldn’t listen to Hillary Clinton in speech mode"
She got into that "If I talk in a really loud monotone, it’ll sound presidential and emphatic" thing, like Al Gore did some times in 2000, as in his stentorian "I ACCEPT YOUR NOMINATION FOR…" at the convention. Made me cringe, that did.
The trick is to talk loudly while modulating and inflecting.
@South of I-10: My two-year-old loves the word "Obama." It’s phonetically perfect for a little person’s linguistic capabilities. Simply by virtue of his name, the man has the toddler vote locked up.
Comrade Mary, Would-Be Minion Of Bad Horse
To be fair, speechifying is hard. You have to make your voice sound good, or even tolerable, while declaiming forcefully, getting appropriately angry, and cracking jokes that don’t collapse. Most politicians are pretty mediocre at this, some are horrific, and only a few are actually a pleasure to listen to.
Apart from the content of speeches, what seems to make a difference are vocal register, accent, cadence/flow, and something ineffable that combine to make that politician sound warm and supportive, or authoritative but reasonable, rather than incoherent, ill at ease, or shrieky.
To my ears, a somewhat deeper voice beats a higher voice, one reason why I can listen to Obama and not McCain. (Has his voice gotten higher with age?) Women in the alto range work for me, so yes to Clinton, Oprah (when she’s not faking an even deeper register), and Ann Richards, but no to the dog-whistlers Palin and Elizabeth Hassellbeck.
As a Canadian, several regional and national accents sound good to me — Maritime/Newfoundlander, haute et bas Québecois in either official language, Scottish, white and black American southern accents, New York City and working-class Boston accents — but much of the Midwest accents and Palin’s exaggerated Alaskan accent will grate unless the person speaking has other assets to make up for it. I don’t know how I’d react to someone with a thick Ontario "hoser" accent, which has its similarities to some Midwestern accents, although typically lower-pitched.
I have an easier time listening to her now that I’ve seen her mockingly imitated so many times. I just imagine she is mocking herself now.
"Bill Kristol won’t let me pick Joe Lieberman. I guess I just go with whoever he tells me to."
You may not like how she speaks, but that’s how she speaks for real. I totally dig being lectured about the what Sarah Palin’s really like by people who’d never heard of her before August.
Look, I agree with the woman about absolutely nothing, am appalled that she was nominated to be VP, and can’t imagine any circumstance under which I’d vote for her, but Jesus you people are small. This kind of nonsense is the flip side of voting for someone because he’s the kind of guy you’d like to have a beer with.
Easy, he thought all of the Hillary supporters were stupid enough to go over to the other side just because Palin’s a woman — and that women in general would do the same. Really.fucking.stupid.and.offensive.
Hardly. People here aren’t voting against McCain/Palin because of Palin’s voice. They’d vote against them even if Palin had the voice of angels and the oratory powers of a young JFK.
The voice is just one added thing to dislike about an already horrible ticket.
Comrade Nixon Hailfire Palin
The kid in this video is cute and makes re-listening to the Palin acceptance speeech barely tolerable, but it astonishes me to hear an alleged adult using a tone normally used for grammar school taunts.
b. hussein canuckistani (comrade)
I just mentally superimpose Tine Fey saying "I can see Russia from my house!" and I get a good laugh out of her every time she speaks. Fey nailed her to the wall with that one, and will make me smile for years to come.
Comrade Mary, Would-Be Minion Of Bad Horse
Melinda, how she speaks now and how she used to speak are different, and several elements of how she speaks now do sound awful to many of us.
Jon H helped me out by identifying Clinton’s speechifying monotone as one of the elements that bugged me. I remember feeling bad that I couldn’t listen to Clinton, but the things I liked and disliked about her were pretty independent from her effect on my ears. That’s not being small, that’s being honest.
(BTW, that "evolving accent" video doesn’t convince me that her current accent is fake. It’s just exaggerated now.)
Melinda, nobody is saying (well, I’m not saying) that her voice is why they won’t vote for her. We’re saying her voice is the reason we can’t stand listening to her.
Not having to hear her on the news for the next four years would be a definite perk of defeating McCain next week, but it’s not the prime motivation.
South of I-10
@Cris v.3.1: I told her I would wait until after school so she could come with me to vote next Tuesday. She is so excited about this. Is it electioneering if a 4 year old is talking about Obama in line?
Ya mean ya don’t like being lectured by a dimwit who speaks to voters as if they are in kindergarten?
Well, golly gee, John, you must be one of those America hating socialist types.
This might come as a shock, but Republican candidates have to speak to GOP voters like children because GOP voters _are_ children. We’re talking about a group of people who believe that fairy tales should be taught as science.
To the imbeciles that comprise the Republican base, Palin is "mommy" and mommy’s always right. Her lecturing, backwoods, know-nothing tone is a feature, not a bug. WTF do you expect?
Kucinich would agree with you. If you read his speeches, he sounds marvelous, I think. Seeing him speak and thinking the same requires some effort.
People do gravitate toward leaders who have outward (superficial, yes) leadership qualities, including a tolerable speaking voice. Unfair or fair, thems the breaks. Even if a particular individual can overcome how a potential leader comports themself, there is always that nagging worry that the masses may not overcome it, ergo said leader may not be a very effective one when the feces hits the fan blades.
Well if there are videos out there where she doesn’t have much of an accent and now during the campaign, she’s laying it on thick, with the combination hair-flip with a giggle, I think that makes HER small. Nobody likes the phony crap and it’s offensive to think someone thinks you’ll buy into it.
Isn’t it? It’s like she purposefully watched Fargo 100 too many times so she could get a “real” America accent she thought would be adorable. You betcha.
As for her manufactured adorableness that sets off starbursts among the "big-picture" wingwankers, for some with something above the brain stem that doesn’t take too long to wear thin. As one McCain adviser noted…
Switch the gender of the personal pronouns and you have Bush.
Melinda- Go here and listen to her in the 2006 Alaska debate:
Now listen to her any day this week and tell me it is the same thing.
limbaugh's pilonidal cyst
Maybe his V!agra was kicking in at the time.
(Let’s see if this gets through the SPAM filter……..)
@Far Left American Hater Incertus: In his defense, the "she’s got boobs" has been the criteria for MANY a decisions in my life….good and bad, interestingly.
I’ve seen her around Alaska for several years and she’s got that upper midwest accent for real. When I’m trying to speak clearly in meetings and whatnot, I sound Canadian (I’m dual US/Canadian citizenship). The rest of the time I don’t. It’s not deliberate, it just happens. Here’s some video from last winter of her in casual conversation: Urban Hike with Sarah Palin.
I can completely understand vehement disagreement with Palin. What I don’t understand is ginning up the personal hate.
Oh, I think all her lies about her record, her scary religious beliefs, her snarky anti-intellectual attitude, her trainwreck of a family which she uses as a prop and the false accusations about Obama do sorta give ME grounds for a personal hate.
The voice is just icing on the putrid cake.
John, I searched last night for probably your first non-endorsement of the Palin. I want to share it. Couldn’t find it. Could you help?
But, hey, on the way back home this a.m. after an early Dem rally of state wide candidates passing through from Atlanta southwards (Go, Jim Martin!), I noticed a sign at a major intersection slap in the middle of McCain-Palin signs (Obama signs are very hard to come by and the North side of town is heavily Repub), on a background of blue, lettering in White was:
I took it as a defense of my team.
Remember, it is unfair to compare McCain’s duration as a pilot with George W Bush’s.
Bush is a far better pilot.
What are Rush’s biggest fans called again… it’s on the tip of my tongue… oh yeah, ditto heads.
There’s a reason for that, I think (or don’t).
Seriously, all of the charges the wingnuts level against the left (hating free speech/liberty, group think, brooking no dissent, financial profligacy) are simply mirrors of their own sick, twisted world view. It’s psychological projection and comes from a deep place of self-hatred, imho (I talk about the wingnuts, not your average conservative/Republican or paid shills). It’s even funnier when they accuse us of racism, sexism, xenophobia or other general intolerances when we won’t vote for people like Jindal, Keyes or Palin.
CIRCVS MAXIMVS MMVIII
Melinda, we are discussing the fact that some of us have a hard time listening to her. Where did we say we hate her?
This is a blog, we discuss things here. If you don’t like it, there are millions of websites out there where you can play games, or read poetry or learn how to build birdhouses or…
You sound like you think we’re being "Un-American" for discussing her voice. Jesus Christ if that isn’t the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard on here.
Everything about Palin is a reason to think she’s horrible – from the abuse of power/office, revenge-mindedness, vindictiveness, extreme right-wing politics to the bald-faced lies that stream from her mouth every time she’s confronted with wrong-doing.
But it’s the faux accent and "can I call you Joe" shenanigans that really puts it over the top for me. At least Dick Cheney and Ted Stevens have the gumption to own their evil. Sarah Palin (like George Bush) are the worst kind of evil – dressed up in pretty packages with folksy charm so you don’t notice they’re raping your country and filling their own coffers at the same time.
Look, I hate David Brooks as much as the next guy, but he’s spot on in the existential threat to America that Palin represents when he says the following:
Any party/leaders that "scorn ideas entirely" are 100000000% wrong for America.
I am now imagining the Presiding Judge taping your child’s mouth shut.
Comrade Mary, Would-Be Minion Of Bad Horse
Melinda, I don’t think anyone here is hating on Alaskans or specific Alaskan accents. What is bothering many people here is Palin’s self-caricature of her own speech patterns on the stump over the past few weeks. Her accent is still present, but human sized, in the debate video and in casual conversation.
On the stump, she is louder, shriller, twangier, whinier, and she plays up the regionalisms and folksiness to the hilt. The hiking video shows her as intermediate between the debate video and her stump speeches, probably partially due to how she has to talk outside and in her office while being recorded with a boom mic.
Circus, it’s not simply that you say you don’t like her voice, it’s the assertions that it’s not actually how she talks. That’s factually incorrect.
[wonk alert: when I said “presiding judge” I was referring to an election official, the person in charge of maintaining order at a polling place. It just occurred to me that such terminology might not be familiar to people who haven’t worked an election.]
Concern Troll is concerned doggone it!
If only Johnny McSame’s party handlers would have let him pick Joltin’ Joe Lieberman as his VP (I truly feel Palin was forced upon him as they required a Wingnut "true believer").
Now there’s a "stentorian" voice I could listen to over and over and over and over (repeat ad infinitum), but then I’ve always been a fan of Droopy Dog cartoons.
it really isn’t.
her accent and her faux-folksie mannerisms (just like W’s), are stronger in some situations than in others.
she amps it up to 11 for her stump speeches but backs it down to a tolerable level during sit-down interviews.
I don’t understand why they cut to the stump speeches of any candidates. They are rarely newsworthy. I shut them all off, even Obama’s and Biden’s.
Also, I can’t stand the way Palin constantly uses the passive voice in her speeches. But I guess it is consistent with her worldview. Using the passive voice is a nice way to play to your audience’s fear of the unknowable other.
I’m am absolutely dreading Halloween here in San Francisco. Since Palin is pretty much a mindless look to throw together (a pair of reading glasses from Walgreen’s and your brother’s old hockey stick) there will probably be a few hundred of her on every street corner and in every bar.
Imagine how many times this conversation is going to take place:
"Hey, great Sarah Palin costume. Can I buy you a drink?"
Kill me now….
And that Melinda, is factually bullshit. Did you not bother to listen to Cole’s video. Or are you attempting to inflict us with some misplaced misogyny accusation? And since when does stating your displeasure with the sound of a persons voice "ginning up the personal hate". Something we have witnessed Sarah pursue with vigor in her stump speeches. Give is a rest already.
I understand Mary Hart is interviewing Sarah Palin tonight. That should set off an epidemic of seizures across the nation.
Her voice has always been like nails on a chalkboard to me. I don’t understand how the pundits could prattle on and on about Hillary’s "shrill" voice but none of them seem to be bothered by Palin’s grating, nasal screech. They all seem to think it’s charming.
@South of I-10: I knew it was time to turn off the TV when my 4 year old said, "Barack Obama? We love Barack Obama!"
That’s nothing. My twenty-month old pointed at the screen yesterday and announced "OBABA!" and my six-year-old has been teasing me for weeks that I’m obsessed. It should be noted that she thinks he’s already President…
Hey, Comrade! I’m actually implying-without-saying that you hate well, I dunno. Something.
Actually, to the extent that there’s any kind of subtext to what I’m saying it has more to do with urban Democrats and their response to regionalism, which I think is a minor problem and personally alienating to those of us of a bumpkin persuasion. But more generally I really dislike this irrelevant personal stuff and am quite disturbed by the hanging-in-effigy of Palin in West Hollywood.
That should make for some great telefission.
I suppose this is aimed at moi’. If so, then it’s just more factual bullshit, since I grew up in the dark hollows of east KY
Appalachia, the charge falls even flatter. Palin is mugging for the camera with accentuated folksy speech to try and seem something she’s not. To get votes. She’s not the first to do that on either side. But after 8 years of Bush’s similar phony attempts at multiple accents to portray himself as just another "Joe Sixpack" we’ve all had it up to here with wingnut faux populist jargon. And that applies to either sex.
I’m relieved to learn that Palin’s accent is unique to her and her Hate Tour 2008.
I was planning to visit Alaska next year, but the the thought of having to listen to 3 weeks of people talking like that was giving me second thoughts.
I am from WV. I know folksy people. I am surrounded by them. They sound nothing like the caricature that Palin is turning herself into. And women don’t wink all the time, at least not in my presence (that may say something about me, I guess).
On the other hand, I have long been frustrated by slow-speaking southern accents. I just want to slap them so they spit it out faster. Also, the lady at Kroger the other day called me “Honey Bunny,” which, if you knew me, is funnier than it sounds written here.
There is a difference between "faux" and "exaggerated." "Faux" means "fake." If Palin’s normal speech had none of the "Fargo of the Yukon" to it, then it’d be a fake accent. It’s there whenever she opens her mouth. I saw footage of her from her days as a sports desk anchor, and the nasal Os and dropped Gs were fighting with her broadcasting class-taught Midwestern flat tones for dominance and occasionally winning. I also caught that in the SNL sketch. They put her behind the Weekend Update desk, and *bam*, she was schooling her accent like it was conditioned into her.
She’s exaggerating that accent, you betcha. But it’s not faux. And I speak as someone who comes across as Californian 90% of the time. Then I let slip with certain pronunciations of "quarter" or "orange," and I’m right back in Massachusetts. (Edited to complete the thought) Many people have accents that veer around the map a bit. That’s just how it is.
It’s very simple. John McCain was thinking with the little starbursts in his pants. I don’t often agree with Kathleen Parker, but this time she nails it. Um, so to speak.
You do realize that people here will now call you that, right Honey Bunny?
And I understand the frustration with the accents. I’m sure Paula Deen is a very nice lady and a wonderful chef, but I just can’t watch her show. One too many "y’all"s, and I start scrambling for the remote.
here is what I said.
In other words, the folksy accent is "accentuated" and the "wingnut populism jargon" is what is faux, or phony.
Short version – He listened to the wingnut opinion-formers like Kristol and Barnes who had met Palin and told him that she would nail down the unsettled fundie Base, appeal to pearl-clutching PUMAs, make middle-aged white men feel starbursts in their pants, and hand the MSM a right-wing ‘celebrity candidate’ to give their coverage of Obama ‘balance’. Plus it would look ‘mavericky’, and that’s good, right?
His problem was that what they were really saying was "John, you’re going to lose, but we’d like you to put this ambitious, know-nothing theocrat on your ticket because we plan to turn her into the new "candidate you’d like to have a beer with, and then, y’know, whatever" and ride her all the way to another election. If you don’t mind, thanks."
So he’s suffering for being stupid. But, y’know, he was a POW.
Planning to rob a Denny’s with Amanda Plummer?
But neither is the stellar failure Bush senior was. How many missions was he the sole survivor of again?
@Krista: Would you believe she tones it down when she’s on TV?
Of course if I were trying to communicate to a nation that contains hundreds of different regional dialects and I had an accent heavy enough to stun a hog I would do that too. If I didn’t have such an accent I certainly wouldn’t adopt one because I’d want people to understand me.
Of course, I’m not a RealAmerican(R), so what do I know?
I still maintain. If by some mischance or ill will, McCain win, his life or freedom will be in danger from the Moose Queen. She will immediately be scheming to have him declared senile and removed from office, or failing that, he’d better start hiring food tasters, like the Medicis, Borgias, and Roman emperors used to do. She’s not looking at him with sparkly thoughts anymore.
From the get-go, her voice has produced in me the sensation that one feels when the dentist’s drill hits the squishy center of the tooth. And it rather resembles the whir of the drill itself.
@Delia: Yep. And don’t forget her rabid fan base.
No matter who wins this one, the Secret Service is going to be a busy bunch of bees for the next four.