Defending the 12th century since the 14th; blogging since the 21st.

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Who was Cacciaguida? See Dante's PARADISO, Cantos XV, XVI, & XVII.

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Friday, August 29, 2008



"NASCAR meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer"


* Pro-life;
* Mother of five,
* of whom is an Army enlisted man about to go over to Iraq;
* called "Barracuda" by her college soccer team-mates;
* an anti-earmark Republican with a reform record;
* hunts moose.
* According to this local piece culled from coverage of the 2006 multi-candidate Alaska governor's race, she:
=> supported Alaska's 1998 state constitutional amendment defining marriage as 1 man & 1 woman;
=> is a member of Feminists for Life;
=> once smoked wacky-terbacky; perhaps twice, even (it was legal in Alaska at the time); and thinks people who split a gusset about that should get a life because methamphetamine is a much greater threat and much more deserving of law-enforcement resources.

In short, the closest to an ideal candidate that this vale of tears is going to produce.

Early conservative press reaction:

National Review editorial: "has wowed the public and enthused the Right."

The Weekly Standard: Fred Barnes reviews her Alaska record; Noemie Emery lists, seriatim, what the Palin choice accomplishes (my favorite: "As a pro-life super-achiever, puts feminists in a tizzy.")

Human Events (my old colleague Marty Sieff writing): "The Sarah Sensation: Sen. John McCain has gone crazy as a fox in picking Sarah Palin, bold as a lioness...."

That leaves, of course, The American Conservative, where Daniel McCarthy ("A Smart Choice on Paper") concedes that she "reassures conservatives" but is of opinion that "Her speech just now was underwhelming to say the least, however. The longer she spoke, the less interesting she seemed, and her voice is not particularly mellifluous." I disagree utterly, but who really thought TAC writers would like any candidate once he or she was actually running? TAC is anti-political: to run is to be a bad candidate.

Then Michael Dougherty -- in a riff that makes even a troglodyte like me reach for the word "sexist" -- writes that "she looked like a local Republican Committee chair who should be introducing McCain during a primary." Sometimes those people run for governor, Mike -- and even win. Guess they just don't know their place, eh? Probably should have handed off the rifle to her husband when it came time to bag the moose, huh.

Dougherty follows this with: "Like Bobby Jindal or Mark Sanford, I considered Sarah Palin a promisingly conservative, likable, and reform-minded governor. I wished desperately to spare her (and them) from association with the bellicose and ideological foreign policy of Bush-McCain." TAC's ideology appears to be that a significant world power can get by without a foreign policy. This proposition can be discussed, but Dougherty's apparent belief that all reform-minded conservative governors accept it until the wand of national prominence is aimed at them is simplistic, and reflects -- again -- scant respect for Gov. Palin's decision-making and conviction-forming powers.

In short: NR, the Standard, and Human Events like her, TAC doesn't -- so it's unanimous!


Kristen Soltis, writing at Ladyblog, which is a feature of Culture11, lists nine reasons to have a "girl-crush" on Sarah Palin -- and eight of them are different from mine! (And my crush ain't girl, dude!) Here they are:
1) She had a baby. In APRIL. (It was her fifth. So like a pro, she was back at work three days later.)
2) She eBayed the state private jet because it was government waste.
3) She cut her own salary.
4) She was in the Miss Alaska pageant.
5) She has a son going to Iraq this month to serve.
6) She is 44.
7) Her husband is an Eskimo…they eloped shortly after college and got folks from the nursing home down the street to be witnesses.
8) She has children named “Track”, “Bristol”, and “Willow”. It’s like NASCAR meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Which, in fact, is pretty appropriate for Sarah Palin.
9) She eats moose burgers. (Not that I have anything against moose.)