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  • Why Feminists Hate Sarah Palin

    Posted by Jay Manifold on September 15th, 2008 (All posts by )

    (UPDATE [h/t Alan Henderson]: plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose)

    Via the usual source … well, if Cathy Young can diagnose it, so can I. Or rather, so can Spider Robinson:

    I think one could perhaps make an excellent case for Heinlein as a female chauvinist. He has repeatedly insisted that women average smarter, more practical and more courageous than men. He consistently underscores their biological and emotional superiority. He married a woman he proudly described to me as “smarter, better educated and more sensible than I am.” In his latest book, Expanded Universe—the immediate occasion for this article—he suggests without the slightest visible trace of irony that the franchise be taken away from men and given exclusively to women. He consistently created strong, intelligent, capable, independent, sexually aggressive women characters for a quarter of a century before it was made a requirement, right down to his supporting casts.


    Oddly, this complaint [“Heinlein can’t create believable women characters”] comes most often from radical feminists. Examination shows that Heinlein’s female characters are almost invariably highly intelligent, educated, competent, practical, resourceful, courageous, independent, sexually aggressive and sufficiently personally secure to be able to stroke their men’s egos as often as their own get stroked. I will—reluctantly—concede that this does not sound like the average woman as I have known her, but I am bemused to find myself in the position of trying to convince feminists that such women can in fact exist.

    I think I know what enrages the radicals: two universal characteristics of Heinlein heroines that I left out of the above list. They are always beautiful and proud of it (regardless of whether they happen to be pretty), and they are often strongly interested in having babies. None of them bitterly regrets and resents having been born female—which of course makes them not only traitors to their exploited sex, but unbelievable.

    I submit that Sarah Palin is the most Heinleinian candidate for Vice-President of the United States in this country’s history (indeed, possibly the only one other than Truman in 1944). The great question, answerable only by future events, is whether electing someone for being intriguing, even deeply intriguing, will in fact result in effective executive leadership.

     

    57 Responses to “Why Feminists Hate Sarah Palin”

    1. Shannon Love Says:

      The great question, answerable only by future events, is whether electing someone for being intriguing, even deeply intriguing, will in fact result in effective executive leadership.

      The Democrats seem to think so.

    2. Shannon Love Says:

      Capital-F feminist hate Sarah Palin because women like her undermine their entire argument. Feminism isn’t about helping women, rather its about exploiting the real and perceived travails of women for the benefit of leftist. They want women to feel weak and powerless (even if they act overtly aggressive) so that they will cling to the state for protection.

      Palin is a middle-class woman who worked her way up from the middle-class to vice president, who is married with five children, who shoots her own food and with whom millions of ordinary women feel a kindred spirit. She represents the polar opposite of the outwardly aggressive but inwardly passive and fearful attitude that feminist want to infect America’s women with.

      If millions of American women see Palin and just decide they don’t need the protection of the state, the Feminist are screwed.

    3. Lexington Green Says:

      I recall reading that Heinlein’s supposedly “impossible” female heroines were based on his wife, Virginia. She was an athlete, a physical chemist, spoke several languages, knew how to cook and how to fight. There are such people.

    4. James Kidder Says:

      As much as Heinlein’s, Isaac Asimov’s stories always involved very strong women who often overshadowed the men in the story. His female characters were consistently more interesting than his male characters. I think he would approve as well.

    5. Joshua Beall II Says:

      Robert Heinlein said:

      “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.”

      I can feel very confident that Sarah Palin can do at least twice as many of these things when compared to Biden or Obama. I give better than even odds that she can do all of them and that Obama can do none.

    6. Jamie Says:

      This cracked me up: This morning I was listening to NPR on my way to work, and the head of NOW was about to tell the NPR team which candidate NOW would endorse. The NPR spokesperson (can’t recall which one it was – they all just sound unctuous to me) made noises just before the interview about how NOW was going to do something highly unusual. There was a bit about how Palin had changed the debate. I was intrigued: did NOW actually consider endorsing McCain-Palin? (I knew they wouldn’t actually do it, but it seemed there was a nonzero chance of their having considered it, under the circumstances.)

      Of course the NOW babe (being a babe myself, I can use the term) endorsed Obama. And without so much as a hint of self-examination, much less hesitation. It was, it seems, evident to NOW that Palin’s ascendancy did not and does not benefit women. In spite of Palin’s not having spoken strongly in favor of “better work-life balance,” as the NOW chick insisted she ought in order to make plain her feminist chops, it’s less evident to me…

    7. Rich Says:

      Joshua Beall II
      Close to 100% …but not quite.
      Obama CAN pitch manure.

    8. Warren Bonesteel Says:

      Dang. I thought I was the only one who saw the correlations between Heinlein and Palin…

      I think she’s also a Constitutional Originalist, which means that she’s quite a bit more classical libertarian or classical liberal than either party is ready to handle.

      (- aka “Bones.”)

    9. Gullyborg Says:

      “I give better than even odds that she can do all of them and that Obama can do none.”

      Oh, come now. Obama pitches manure all the time!

    10. matt Says:

      Heinlein’s women kicked A**. I agree Palin is as close to his ideal of libertarianism, intelligence, common sense, and decency as I’ve yet seen, male or female.

    11. Orion Says:

      They surely do.

      My friend is a Paramedic, a US Army Soldier (Combat Medic), speaks two languages (although admits her German isn’t all THAT good) and kicked even the men’s butts in Combatives and Pugil fighting. She’s also an excellent cook, wants a family in a few years, is very physically pretty as well as a beautiful person, and is very, very feminine.

      Surely makes ME wish I were twenty years younger!

      But see, she doesn’t spend all day whining about what a victim she is, so naturally she’s not going to be popular among the Feminists.

      Orion

    12. Eric Blair Says:

      Certainly those are Spider Robinson’s words, and I agree that Sarah Palin fits the mold. I was fortunate enough to have corresponded a bit with Ginny Heinlein before she passed away, and I think she would agree.

      However, Spider Robinson will just burst into Left of center flammable anger if he catches wind that you applied his words to Sarah Palin. You see…she is a…Republican.

      Good post.

    13. Bryan Price Says:

      I can feel very confident that Sarah Palin can do at least twice as many of these things when compared to Biden or Obama. I give better than even odds that she can do all of them and that Obama can do none.

      You also left out her running mate, McCain.

    14. David E. Young Says:

      Actually, Sarah Palin reminds me of a female version of Teddy Roosevelt.

    15. bc Says:

      TANSTAAFL. If only Obama knew what this means, or cared.

    16. Garland Says:

      Palin is an excellent choice. I can grok that!

    17. Alyssabeth Finacelo Says:

      Agree that Palin and Heinlein would have gotten on handsomely. Obama, on the other hand, would have been bagged and tagged as a pretender at large before the handshake.

    18. otpu Says:

      There is a real difference between pitching manure and slinging Bullsh*t.

      When you’re pitching manure you have to be able to place the manure pretty much on target or you’re wasting it.

      When you’re just slinging BS you don’t really have a target, you’re just trying to get everything around you covered as deeply as possible.

      100% vs 0%

      otpu

    19. Mama73 Says:

      O.K., a little of topic but… I have to admit, the “sexual aggressiveness” of Heinlein’s female characters (and other science fi heroines – think Varley’s Captain Cirroco) does not ring true to me. At least not the part where they go and have sex with all the hunks they meet. (Or decrepit old men–wish fulfillment for Mr. H there?)

      Seriously, women I’ve met who’ve have lots of partners often tend to not enjoy sex very much (not sayin’ they aren’t out there, just sayin’ I don’t know any). Some never even climax (although they lie faithfully about it to their men). And they are usually not very confident.

      Anyway, I “grok” Palin, and Heinlein too in a lot of ways.

    20. Kevin Says:

      Mama73–

      Well, I’ve known some very capable young women who very much enjoy men.

      But anyway, I think that Spider was referring to characters such as Friday Baldwin, Dora Smith or Hazel Stone rather than those in the fairly atypical Stranger

    21. Yort Says:

      “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.”
      While I don’t know her political leanings, another woman in this model is Jill Stevens a.k.a.
      G.I. Jill. Sgt. Stevens represented Utah in last years Miss America Pageant.
      As a combat medic, Stevens probably has the bone setting and orders part down, and I’ll bet she can fight efficiently too. has the bone setting and order part down, and I’ll bet she can fight efficiently too.
      Like Heinlein, I like strong women.

    22. Obama Rossi Says:

      There are obvious differences between Palin and Heinlein’s women (real and literary):

      Education (Palin got a degree in Journalism… What does Heinlein say about an education that avoids math?)

      IQ (Palin’s seems normal; all his women were abnormal)

      Religion (Haven’t seen her church videos and read A COMEDY OF JUSTICE have you commenters?)

      Language Fluency (English only)

      Regarding:
      “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly.”

      Plan an invasion? Doubt it. http://news.yahoo.com/s/mcclatchy/20080903/pl_mcclatchy/3035478

      Conn a ship? Was she in the Navy? Nice to see you guys think this stuff is so easy. Heinlein didn’t.

      Write a sonnet, build a wall, set a bone?

      Solve equations? No. Program a computer? Not a chance — Journalism…

      Fight efficiently? Sure, if her targets can’t shoot back at her.

    23. Joseph Hertzlinger Says:

      Podkayne of Alaska?

    24. Rick Says:

      Bryan Price,

      I do not know what his current condition is due to age and injuries but since he was a Naval Officer I do know that at one time John McCain could do most fo those things listed. Cheers! Rick

    25. Mama73 Says:

      Kevin I “enjoy men”…or rather, “a man”. The women I meet who enjoy lots of men tend to be messed in the head.

      But perhaps you’re right, and I’m thinking too much of “Stranger”…which also featured a 20 foot python that doubled as a babysitter. I know, I know, its fiction…but…

      I hate people trying to push their sexual morality on others. And that includes pushing the notion that people who aren’t interested in a casual frolic must have something deeply disturbed.

      But where does it leave us with the feministas above. I really think they hate her because after many years they’ve come to take anything other than being pro-choice and an equal pay amendment supporter/3 year maternity leave supporter as being anti-woman.

      I’m pro-choice, but I’m not a single issue voter and can respect the other side on this issue. As for equal pay amendments/extended paid maternity leave, I think legislating either is a horrible idea and will keep companies from hiring top women for the top jobs.

    26. skipkent Says:

      Heinlein (and his characters) is the first person I thought about when I first read about Gov. Palin. As this is the second reference to this I’ve heard, clearly I’m not alone!

    27. Obloodyhell Says:

      > I recall reading that Heinlein’s supposedly “impossible” female heroines were based on his wife, Virginia. She was an athlete, a physical chemist, spoke several languages, knew how to cook and how to fight. There are such people.

      *AND* she was a sweetheart. I met her once a year or so before she died.

      Not one shred of the arrogant Clintonite feminist bitch in her.

    28. Obloodyhell Says:

      > Obama CAN pitch manure.

      No, he can MAKE manure.

      Pitching manure is for the plebes.

      The only thing that can make Obama get his hands dirty?

      Here’s what it is.

    29. Jay Manifold Says:

      “Obama Rossi” is attempting to counter an argument I did not even make about Sarah Palin, while evading the argument Spider Robinson did make about the personalities of Heinlein’s female characters.

      I considered deleting that comment altogether but decided to leave it up as an example of how not to answer either of the points in the original post.

      Further irrelevancies disguised as counterarguments, however, will be deleted with extreme prejudice.

    30. Alan K. Henderson Says:

      So what would be a sci-fi parallel to the Democratic leadership? Or to McCain?

    31. Obama Rossi Says:

      Jay Manifold,

      Your words: “I submit that Sarah Palin is the most Heinleinian candidate for Vice-President of the United States in this country’s history.”

      As my comment showed, Palin is only shallowly Heinleinian. She’s aggressive sounding, feminine looking, and likes rifles a lot. Other than that (and with Joshua Bell II’s helpful quote) I compared her to Heinlein’s ideals and showed that she doesn’t measure up AT ALL. There’s not much there.

      If you’d rather have six MORE comments talking about Obama’s manure pitching/making and turn this comment board into a pure consensus-brigade, you should delete my comments. There is no advantage to reading stuff you disagree with.

    32. Jay Manifold Says:

      So this is supposed to be a reading-comprehension lesson … let’s see if I can argue the same way:

      Sarah Palin does not live on another planet.
      Sarah Palin does not engage in spouse-swapping.
      Sarah Palin is not a blond like Wyoming Knott.

      Therefore, she “is only shallowly Heinleinian”?

      Grow a real name or I will start deleting your comments.

    33. dash Says:

      RE: So what would be a sci-fi parallel to the Democratic leadership? Or to McCain?

      Try the Peoples Republic of Haven (Honor Harrington series – David Weber)

      Not sure about McCain, though a few Heinlein characters come to mind – not fully mind you, but close. Col Neilsen, Maj Reid, and Flt Sgt Ho in Troopers for example; physically disabled warriors still performing their duty. Not to mention Papa Mannie (Moon is a Harsh Mistress) who had lost an arm and became a leader in the Lunar Revolution.

    34. Obama Rossi Says:

      Jay Manifold,

      Sarah Palin is no Virginia Heinlein, no Jeane Kirkpatrick, no Carmen Ibanez, no Peewee Reisfeld. Reason? She’s not very smart, she actually spent her time in college learning Journalism instead of engineering, doesn’t seem to know any language but English, etc. You can focus on her shallow similarities to Heinleinian women (aggression, femininity, gun love) but I say that the primary trait of almost all of them is high IQ, which is something Palin lacks.
      I didn’t make any silly statements like:
      Sarah Palin does not live on another planet.
      Sarah Palin does not engage in spouse-swapping.
      Sarah Palin is not a blond like Wyoming Knott.
      Sarah Palin is not a Wisdom.
      Sarah Palin never never joined an alien race.

      What is this about “grow(ing) a real name” or facing deletion? Almost all of your commenters use pseudonyms. Now, if you want to delete my comments because you disagree with my idea that Palin’s normal IQ nixes her Heinlein-ness then delete away, consensus seeker. It’s pathetic when a fan of Schumpeter, Friedman, Pournelle, Niven, Brink Lindsey, Hayek, and Heinlein is too different from you to be allowed to comment on your little blog.

    35. Lexington Green Says:

      Palin is a commercial fisherman. She knows her way around boats. She had her fingers broken once doing it. She has been fishing and hunting her whole life, for food. Her Dad was a high school teacher and he had a lot of mouths to feed. So, she has some of the boxes checked. She is a lot more Heinleinian than any other woman politician I can think of.

      The problem with this Obama Rossi guy is his tone is insulting. If he said the same things in a civil way no one would care. If it were my post, I’d have deleted it. Not over the disagreement, but over the insulting tone that is the default setting for Lefties these days.

    36. Jonathan Says:

      I think she’s smart. She’s done well in a competitive if not hostile environment, in her vocation of choice. Where she went to school and what she studied give little indication of anything. Plenty of smart people lack formal education or elite credentials. Plenty of people who have such things are not smart or not successful. Being well traveled or able to speak multiple languages are nice qualities but the same comments apply as to education. She performs well. She outcompetes adversaries. Why place higher value on her credentials than on her performance?

    37. Jonathan Says:

      One more point. As someone on another blog pointed out, Palin uses language with great skill. She uses words precisely and appears to communicate effectively with people at all levels. These are characteristics of a highly intelligent person.

    38. Obama Rossi Says:

      Lexington Greene,

      Read my statements and the statements of Jay Manifold in order. Now tell me where my “tone is insulting” and realize that you sound like a whiny Democrat. Almost every statement I’ve made here has been a statement of fact that can be checked, not a threat that I’m going to revoke someone’s posting privileges (gasp). If you find my tone insulting just because I say that Palin has average intelligence, then I’m probably hitting a nerve because you see it too.

      Like all libertarians, I have no real party, which is why I’ll be voting for Dino Rossi and Barack Obama. My strong endorsement of Rossi and unhappy endorsement of Not McCain/Palin pulls me clearly out of the Lefty column and into the Cato column.

    39. Obloodyhell Says:

      > But perhaps you’re right, and I’m thinking too much of “Stranger”…which also featured a 20 foot python that doubled as a babysitter.

      That’s taken out of context, madame. Michael had “talked” to it prior to its assumption of those duties…

      > Fight efficiently? Sure, if her targets can’t shoot back at her.

      I will bet you $100, even money, that she would kick your ass at paint ball.

    40. Obloodyhell Says:

      I did a search on Sarah Palin’s IQ. Bumped into this, take it for the intelligently considered speculation it is, barring a factual answer:

      a) The average SAT score of freshmen at the University of Idaho is about a 1110.

      b) The site below claims to have an SAT to IQ conversion table. An SAT score of 1110 gives an IQ of 117. Let’s assume Sarah Palin was moderately above average in IQ at the University of Idaho. Then she could easily have an IQ in the mid-120s. This would be slightly higher than JFK’s 119.

      http://www.iqcomparisonsite.com/SATIQ.aspx

    41. Obama Rossi Says:

      Obloodyhell,

      In the woods? Yes. In the city? Doubtful. And I never go to the woods. Also, paint-balling has so many differences from real shooting that I don’t think Heinlein would have been impressed with your bet.

      Also, we’re talking about Heinlein’s Heroines, who mostly used handguns indoors, in-city, or on the moon. I’ve never seen Palin with a handgun. Not that I’m arguing she doesn’t love guns.

      Plus, her IQ is only average, even if someone on another blog pointed out that she uses language with great skill. (How about an example of this that wasn’t written for her, Jonathan?)

    42. Obama Rossi Says:

      Here’s a good example of Palin showing her normal IQ, illogicality, and extreme religiosity (all contra Jay Manifold’s statements of her Heinleinishness.) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QG1vPYbRB7k

      “Let’s assume Sarah Palin was moderately above average in IQ at the University of Idaho.” Why? She was a student of JOURNALISM, not engineering, science, economics, or law.

      What a silly line of logic: Palin went to U of I decades ago… average SAT’s there now are 1110 (remember how they were “recentered” in the mid-90′s so that 1110 today would have been closer to 1000 then)… Palin, J-schooler, probably had a higher-than-average score (instead of squeaking in because of sports, A/V club, etc. and disregarding her major)… therefore, Palin has an IQ in the mid 120′s…

      Good work, Obloodyhell! At least you’re talking about the substance of the issue.

    43. Obloodyhell Says:

      > My strong endorsement of Rossi and unhappy endorsement of Not McCain/Palin pulls me clearly out of the Lefty column and into the Cato column.

      The fact that you would even CONSIDER Barack Obama pulls you utterly out of libertarian and into left field.

      Ignore Palin — as the wit once said, her job, every day, is to get up and ask “How’s the President’s health?”

      McCain, the PotUS being considered, is clearly middle-of-the road — to the left of middle by most conservative viewpoints.

      Obama, by his voting record, is not only far, far left but he’s gonee off the road, past the ditch, and is out scouting new, uncharted territory.

      Any true libertarian would consider Obama a complete loss.

      You can call yourself a libertarian. Your support of Obama makes the prevarication blatant.

    44. Obloodyhell Says:

      P.S., I don’t find his tone insulting. It’s fairly self-assured, and contrary to what I believe, and I find faults with his reasoning, but his comments are not something I’d take issue with, were it my blog, for whatever little value that may be worth.

      Of course, I tend to be quite insulting to fools wasting my time, gauging it by the site.

      OR hasn’t impressed me as a complete waste of time, I’d say his points are not egregiously bad.

      My US$.02 < —- and worth each and every pfennig.

    45. Ginny Says:

      And we see the same old tired meme that a Republican from flyover territory must have a low I.Q. Stated with the certainty that all those people who are less well-read and less thoughtful (and less intelligent) have used when describing – I don’t know – about any Republican elected official who wasn’t impeached in the last fifty or sixty years.

    46. Nortius Maximus Says:

      I think the antinomies (that’s a Spider word) present in the Spider Robinson – Sarah Palin situation would cause Spider’s head to explode were he to fully countenance them. I don’t want his head to explode, I’m sort of fond of the guy. I can’t bring myself to find out if he’s written on Ms Palin. I’m a wuss.

    47. Alan K. Henderson Says:

      Jay called Palin “the most Heinleinian candidate for Vice-President of the United States in this country’s history.” A proper refutation requires not establishing that Palin is more non-Heinleinian than Heinleinian, but that there has been a Veep candidiate more Heinleinian than she.

      McCain’s science fiction parallel lies elsewhere…

      http://cmpalmer.blogspot.com/2008/03/john-mccain-is-he-cylon.html

      At least nobody says Palin is lipstick on a bandersnatch :-)

    48. Alan K. Henderson Says:

      As to why feminists hate Palin, there’s more to it than simply the fact that she opposes many of their policies. Palin defies the Stepford Wife conservative stereotype that the feminists have long preached as gospel. She does far more than desecrate the feminist image of womanhood – by discrediting false prophecies about conservatives she undermines the credibility of the prophets. The false prophets are fighting back.

    49. Peter G. Says:

      Palin’s speech at the convention reminded me of the character of “Madam President” from the “Over the Rainbow–” section of Heinlein’s “The Happy Days Ahead” in _Expanded Universe_.

      But now that I’ve read more about her actual record, and I’ve heard what she’s said about her record, and I’ve watched that Gibson interview, I realize she has very little in common with a Heinlein heroine.

      Yes, she’s a leader. She has a strong personality that is not defined in terms of her relationships with men. She’s able to define and seek her own goals. She’s comfortable out of doors. She’s attractive.

      But she isn’t particularly smart. When she doesn’t have a script, she doesn’t speak well. To me, she appears to be the least intelligent of the four people on the major tickets.

      She isn’t particularly honorable. She’s been misrepresenting her record, and the record itself bears no clear relationship to her professed ideals.

      And she isn’t even a good politician. She’s done a poor job of covering up her flaws (though I must say, they are not particularly bad in the context of national politics). She doesn’t respond well when aggressive questioners like Gibson attempt to take her off message, which is a crucial skill. She’s shown little talent for consensus-building, relying instead on “my way or the highway” bullying.

      I have the same problem with Palin that I have with Bush, Obama, Biden, and McCain. They’re all pushing big-government political agendas without any apparent awareness of the problems inherent in these agendas. (On the other hand, they’re all experts on the problems with their opponents’ plans.)

      Ultimately, they’re really just bickering over details. Should the Federal budget be $2.9 billion or only $2.8 billion? What’s the most effective way to buy votes– more social spending, or tax breaks for business?

      Sometimes I wonder if the purpose of this bickering is to distract attention from the first-order effect, which is whether the government ought to be taking such a large role in the economy and in our social lives in the first place.

      We can’t solve the problems of big government by instituting a different kind of big government. None of the major candidates appreciate this simple fact, so none of them deserve our support.

      . png

    50. Shannon Love Says:

      Peter G,

      If you’re basing your assessment of Palin on the Gibson interview you should be aware that the interview you saw was heavily edited to leave out much of what she said. You should read the entire transcript before making your judgment.

      We can’t solve the problems of big government by instituting a different kind of big government. None of the major candidates appreciate this simple fact, so none of them deserve our support.

      In real world we have to choose the least of evils. Voting is only the first step in the political system. You can vote for the least obnoxious candidate and then do what you can to hold their feet to the fire on big government issues.

    51. Peter G. Says:

      Shannon Love:

      It seems to me that choosing between two candidates who are 0.1% apart on any given issue is not very useful.

      If you want to get some mileage out of your vote, vote for the non major-party candidate who is least objectionable to you.

      There are many reasons to vote for a Republican or Democratic candidate. Maybe you like him or her, maybe you’re stupid, maybe you just don’t care. Nobody can tell; all those reasons get mixed into one big sticky wad of votes.

      But when you vote for someone who isn’t going to win, you’re sending a clear message. You’re saying that whether or not anyone else agrees with your opinions, you’re still not going to vote for bad candidates. You’re saying that principles matter to you.

      More importantly, you’re making a strong argument that there are probably ten or twenty people who share your opinions but still voted for the major candidates (or just didn’t vote at all). The major parties, seeking to gain or solidify the support of these voters, will adjust their policies in a favorable direction. The more support given to the minor parties, the more adjustments result.

      No, it probably won’t matter much, but neither does choosing McCain or Obama, and at least you won’t be cooperating with your own destruction.

      . png

    52. Alan K. Henderson Says:

      Re: bandersnatchi – I’m getting my Niven and Heinlein critters mixed up.

      Perhaps the Democratic leadership can relate to Niven’s ultimate Precautionary Principle adherents, the Pierson’s Puppeteers.

    53. Steven Hansmann Says:

      Palin is disliked not because she is a woman, but because she’s incompetent, as a politician and a mother, in addition to not being the sharpest tool in the shed. Her career has been greased with ruthless ambition, not an appealing character element in males or females. She lives in the ultimate welfare state, Alaska, with the highest number of employees on the government titty, one of the highest welfare rates, highest alcoholism and drug dependency rates, highest rape rate, with two to ten times the earmark pork of any other state etc., in essence, the poster-child state for “conservative” boot-strap advocates, the vast majority of whom would vomit if they watched my daughter and I eviscerate a rabbit, let alone the deer we shoot most years. The most pathetic aspect of her ascendancy to the vice-presidential ticket is that she was chosen soley for her looks, (that and the delusional and truly crazy branch christianity she espouses), a fertile MILF. Imagine for a minute her chances of even being considered for the job if she had exactly the same qualifications and looked like RoseAnne Barr. She’s the exact opposite of a resourceful and independent Heinleinesque character.

    54. Jonathan Says:

      How has she come so far, so fast if she is merely incompetent and ambitious? Many politicians, including attractive women, are incompetent and ambitious yet never advance beyond local office. You also ignore her popularity with constituents. And how do you know that McCain chose her for her looks alone?

    55. Ginny Says:

      Steven Hansmen,

      You probably have no idea how much such a comment reveals about you. As a woman, I have known men like you. And they have not been men whose judgment I respect.

      For instance, that you are sure she was chosen for her looks is one of those completely unsupported statements that indicate more about how you look at a woman than how McCain does. The rather bizarre & discursive point that conservatives are not true bootstrappers and true hunters again tells us how you want to project yourself – little about her but that she gets under some people’s skins.

      Her history demonstrates someone who is indeed McCain’s soul partner; they share some of the same strengths and some of the same weaknesses. The flaws may be reinforced by their proximity and that is a problem. (But the strong sense of honor & stubborness they share, I find that less worrisome than that Biden’s quite silly perspective will influence Obama’s complete lack of experience.)

      McCain and Palin share abilities to cut through to what they see (and often is) the core of a problem. Some mistake intelligence for solipsism – that is a problem of our times. Some people mistake voting present and not taking a stand as wise. If you have earned that position – say, you are George Washington and Benjamin Franklin after they have successfully freed us from England and demonstrated their own characters in countless ways through long lives – that may be a sensible position, choosing not to weigh in often or heavily. You want the young Turks who have to live with it to develop a system that works, so you provide lightly so as not to dominate. That Obama is in that position is laughable.

    56. Vince P Says:

      I’m ashamed to be an American when folks like Steven Hansmen say what they do.

      What is wrong with our society that more and more people with that attitude seem to be produced.

    57. Anonymous Says:

      Palin would hate being compared to a Heilein woman. with her religious conviction vs. his views on religion – WOO baby, those Joe six packs might have to come over and beat you up!