Vetting Sarah Palin: Contemplating the Cameras, Experience

There’s two interesting looks at the Sarah Palin and the Republican National Convention in today’s Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. 

First, there’s the invaluable Kyle Brazzel, who delivers a wonderful distillation of the Week in Palin as seen through former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s convention speech (another classic Huckabee oration) and the unblinking eye of the TV cameras:

Armchair veep vetters would say it’s all material, girl. But Huckabee had a point about the media, or at least the Fourth Estate’s supply of the demands of Web trollers who found all those Photoshop jobs of Palin in kittenish high heels and microminiskirts so easy to believe. (Fashionistas, meanwhile, are looking at real pictures and dismissing her as a “Lenscrafter model.”) 
    Even the camera operators on the convention floor seemed to have a sharper agenda than their peers a week earlier in Denver. They found the protester being scooted up the stairs by guys in riot gear. 
    The angle over Palin’s shoulder that encompassed the teleprompter crawl seemed to be 
a sly jab at Republican calculation and prepackaging; Barack Obama was teleprompted, too, after all.

(I’d link to Brazzel’s column if I could find it on a linkable page. Check “Top of the Rock” on the front of Sunday’s High Profile.)

Meanwhile, Phillip Martin ponders whether experience is necessary in the veep slot. This is politics, after all, where Martin says “truly creative thinkers-like erstwhile Arkansas gubernatorial candidate Rod Bryan-are dismissed as colorful, unelectable characters.”

… as I’m writing this (a bit earlier in the week than usual because I’m traveling) it looks like Palin could be another Eagleton. I wouldn’t be surprised if her candidacy doesn’t last the week. Maybe by the time you read this she’ll be gone.

On the other hand, I wouldn’t be surprised if she not only survives as the vice presidential candidate but actually makes a difference in the campaign. I wouldn’t be surprised if Americans embrace a relative newbie, if her lack of experience and cavalier (or cynical) attitude toward first principles isn’t rewarded by a voting public that prefers photogenic “straight” talkers to less interesting, less certain, more considerate minds.

You can read Martin’s blog here.

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