Ramesh Ponnuru on “Palin’s Alleged Anti-Intellectualism” in the conservative National Review Online:
Last week I asked what evidence we have that Palin is, as is often said, “anti-intellectual.” …
A friend pointed me to Noam Scheiber’s article on Palin [NB Scheiber's New Republic article well worth reading]. The Palin of Scheiber’s portrayal certainly fits the label: She seethes with class and intellectual resentments. (The article does not attempt to disentangle the two.) But all of the evidence the article presents for this view comes from political enemies of Palin. They don’t really even provide first-hand accounts of her flaws in action so much as they offer characterizations of what was going on inside her head. Scheiber concludes, “Could Sarah Palin despise Anne Kilkenny because Kilkenny once suggested she refrain from chewing gum? I’d like to believe it’s not true. But I’m honestly not so sure.” Okay. But Kilkenny got wide attention for circulating an email trashing Palin after her selection as McCain’s running mate. How much do we want to bank on her impressions?
Yet another reason a Palin press conference is necessary.
And just for fun, some reminders of Palin in her own words:
I’m not one of those who maybe came from a background of, you know, kids who perhaps graduate college and their parents give them a passport and give them a backpack and say go off and travel the world.No, I’ve worked all my life. In fact, I usually had two jobs all my life until I had kids. I was not a part of, I guess, that culture. The way that I have understood the world is through education, through books, through mediums that have provided me a lot of perspective on the world.
Speaking of those books and mediums/media, from the CBS interview with Katie Couric:
Couric: And when it comes to establishing your worldview, I was curious, what newspapers and magazines did you regularly read before you were tapped for this to stay informed and to understand the world?
Palin: I’ve read most of them, again with a great appreciation for the press, for the media.
Couric: What, specifically?
Palin: Um, all of them, any of them that have been in front of me all these years.
Couric: Can you name a few?
Palin: I have a vast variety of sources where we get our news, too. Alaska isn’t a foreign country, where it’s kind of suggested, “Wow, how could you keep in touch with what the rest of Washington, D.C., may be thinking when you live up there in Alaska?” Believe me, Alaska is like a microcosm of America.
And don’t forget parsing Palin‘s own words.
Best yet, of course, would be an unscripted press conference.
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