Last night's vice presidential debate was a mitigated disaster. Sarah Palin managed to string some coherent-sounding sentences together, which was a vast improvement over her interview performances (what a difference no follow-up makes!). She sounded like a semi-bright high school junior faking her way through a presentation on a subject she hasn't studied, and pulled together enough talking points to earn a low C.
On the truth front, however, she earns a ginormous F:
I wasn't able to watch the debate live, but I kept up on it via liveblogging at various sites, and my first (and continuing thought) was, "Wow. That's a lie. That's a lie. That's a great big fucking lie. Is she going to say anything that isn't a bald-faced lie? Ha! Yes - when she's being completely fucking incoherent:"
We've come to expect a breathtaking degree of dishonesty from Palin over the last five weeks -- anyone who repeats, dozens of times, that she opposed the Bridge to Nowhere after she publicly supported it has already forfeited quite a bit of credibility -- but looking over my notes from last night, I came up with this list of my favorite Palin lies.
* Obama voted against troop funding? That's wildly misleading.
* Obama voted to raise taxes 94 times? That's absurd.
* Obama wants "the feds" to "take over" Americans' "mandated" healthcare? That's not even close to reality.
* Obama voted to raise taxes on families making only $42,000 a year? A transparent lie.
* Palin boasted that she was among the Alaskan policymakers who "called for divestment" from state money invested in Sudan. Actually, her administration opposed divestment, at least at first, saying the Alaska Permanent Fund shouldn't take social or political agendas into consideration.
She really doesn't have any idea what she's talking about, does she? That's okay - I have no fucking clue what she's talking about, either.
But there are real changes going on in our climate. And I don't want to argue about the causes. What I want to argue about is, how are we going to get there to positively affect the impacts?
We have got to clean up this planet. We have got to encourage other nations also to come along with us with the impacts of climate change, what we can do about that.
As governor, I was the first governor to form a climate change sub-cabinet to start dealing with the impacts. We've got to reduce emissions. John McCain is right there with an "all of the above" approach to deal with climate change impacts.
We've got to become energy independent for that reason. Also as we rely more and more on other countries that don't care as much about the climate as we do, we're allowing them to produce and to emit and even pollute more than America would ever stand for.
So even in dealing with climate change, it's all the more reason that we have an "all of the above" approach, tapping into alternative sources of energy and conserving fuel, conserving our petroleum products and our hydrocarbons so that we can clean up this planet and deal with climate change.
And then we have incoherency and lies:
In tonight's debate, Sarah Palin mischaracterized statements by the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. David McKiernan, in which he said that an Iraq-like "surge" would not be appropriate for Afghanistan.
Palin asserted that one thing distinguishing John McCain's proposed policy in Afghanistan from President Bush's was that McCain thinks that "the surge principles that have worked in Iraq need to be implemented in Afghanistan, also."
In response Biden pounced, noting that McKiernan had come out against such an approach just today. Palin then hedged, saying that "McClellan" (meaning McKiernan) had not "definitively" ruled out using "surge principles" in Afghanistan:
Well, first, McClellan did not say definitively the surge principles would not work in Afghanistan. Certainly, accounting for different conditions in that different country and conditions are certainly different. We have NATO allies helping us for one and even the geographic differences are huge but the counterinsurgency principles could work in Afghanistan. McClellan didn't say anything opposite of that. The counterinsurgency strategy going into Afghanistan, clearing, holding, rebuilding, the civil society and the infrastructure can work in Afghanistan. And those leaders who are over there, who have also been advising George Bush on this have not said anything different but that.
But according to a report in Thursday's Washington Post, McKiernan was emphatic in remarks made Wednesday, that a "surge" would not succeed in Afghanistan. Here's what McKiernan actually said, according to the Post:"Afghanistan is not Iraq," said Gen. David D. McKiernan, who led ground forces during the 2003 Iraq invasion and took over four months ago as head of the NATO-led coalition in Afghanistan.
Speaking in Washington yesterday, McKiernan described Afghanistan as "a far more complex environment than I ever found in Iraq." The country's mountainous terrain, rural population, poverty, illiteracy, 400 major tribal networks and history of civil war all make for unique challenges, he said.
"The word I don't use for Afghanistan is 'surge,' " McKiernan stressed, saying that what is required is a "sustained commitment" to a counterinsurgency effort that could last many years and would ultimately require a political, not military, solution.
Note to Sarah: General McClellan's dead, and General McKiernan would like you to stop putting your own lies in his mouth, thanks so much.
This fucking freak who can't tell the difference between a live general and a dead one, and who can't comprehend the simple sentence "Afghanistan is not Iraq," plans as Vice President to lord it over the legislative and judicial branches:
During the vice presidential debate last night, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin said that she agreed with Vice President Cheney’s belief that there is “a lot of flexibility” in the Office of the Vice President and that she was “thankful the Constitution would allow a bit more authority given to the vice president.”
In an interview with Fox News’ Carl Cameron this morning, Palin attempted to explain what she meant about “the flexibility of the vice presidency.” “The vice president, of course, is not a member — or a part of the legislative branch, except to oversee the Senate,” said Palin. “That alone provides a tremendous amount of flexibility and authority if that vice president so chose to use it.”
She then claimed that she intended on “bleeding” her “authority over to the Legislative or Judicial branch” in order to push McCain’s agenda:
CAMERON: Would you change any of that, (INAUDIBLE) than the Bush/Cheney administration in terms of the power of the executive?
PALIN: Well, again, as I tried to explain last night, our executive branch will know what our job is. We have the three very distinct branches of government. You know, we might be bleeding our authority over to the Legislative or Judicial branch to do our job in the Executive branch as administers.
If that little vision of the future doesn't scare you shitless, my darlings, you are far braver people than I. Or, perhaps, you're feeling the effect of some big brown eyes and a flirtatious wink:
There's been a noticeable trajectory of Republican emotion over the last five weeks when it comes to Sarah Palin. After the introduction, the right swooned.
Then she started talking. After the Charlie Gibson interview, conservatives were concerned. After the Couric interviews, Republicans started to panic.
In the wake of Palin's odd and disjointed performance in last night's debate, I guess they're back to swooning again. Take this embarrassing item from the National Review's Rich Lowry:
I'm sure I'm not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, "Hey, I think she just winked at me." And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around the living rooms of America.
Excuse me. I think I'm going to be sick. I'll let Hilzoy speak up for me here, while I'm worshipping porcelain:
I'm sure I'm not the only female in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, rolled her eyes and thought: oh, dear God. We have all seen just that wink deployed at guys like Rich Lowry. We have all watched in amazement as it actually works, despite its transparent manipulativeness. What, we all wonder, could those guys possibly be thinking? (What the winking women are thinking is usually altogether too clear.) I'm betting that for every male vote that wink picked up, it lost at least one woman.If this election comes down to men voting with their dicks, I am going to embark on a road trip throughout America and soundly beat each and every one. It will be my Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back moment. I just don't know if it will be enough to assuage my disgust.