First there are those like Mark Liebovich at The New York Times:
Ms. Palin is becoming increasingly vocal and visible, with a series of events scheduled this weekend: delivering a paid speech to the Salina, Kan., Chamber of Commerce on Friday night, headlining a national Tea Party convention in Nashville on Saturday and appearing on behalf of the re-election campaign of Gov. Rick Perry of Texas in Houston on Sunday.
This latest foray “Outside” (Alaskan slang for the rest of the country) culminates a week in which she achieved a typical run of multimedia ubiquity from Wasilla: She e-mailed a high-profile endorsement of Dr. Rand Paul in a Republican Senate primary in Kentucky. She called — via Facebook — for the resignation of the White House chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, for using the term “retarded,” and announced — via a column in USA Today — that she would attend a Tea Party gathering next month in Searchlight, Nev., the hometown of the Senate Democratic leader, Harry Reid.
Her growing cast of advisers and support system could be working in the service of any number of goals: a presidential run, a de facto role as the leader of the Tea Party movement, a lucrative career as a roving media entity — or all of the above. Ms. Palin represents a new breed of unelected public figures operating in an environment in which politics, news media and celebrity are fused as never before. Whether she ever runs for anything else, Ms. Palin has already achieved a status that has become an end in itself: access to an electronic bully pulpit, a staff to guide her, an enormous income and none of the bother or accountability of having to govern or campaign for office.
Ms. Palin has also enlisted a small team of policy counselors to guide her through the substantive areas in which many deemed her to be lacking in 2008. Randy Scheunemann, a foreign policy adviser to Mr. McCain who also clashed with the campaign leadership, got $30,000 from Ms. Palin’s PAC in the second half of 2009. He helped write a speech for Ms. Palin in Hong Kong last September and also contributes to a daily briefing prepared by Kim Daniels, a Maryland lawyer who did legal work in Alaska for the McCain campaign. (She is now advising Ms. Palin on domestic policy issues and received $21,000 from SarahPAC in the second half of 2009.)
People with knowledge of the daily briefings say they are conducted by phone or e-mail. They typically include information on the day’s news, material that could be relevant to an upcoming speech, or guidance about a candidate Ms. Palin might endorse. Mr. Scheunemann in particular is known as a conservative hawk on foreign affairs, in keeping with what many Palin-watchers have viewed as her steady shift to the right.
In other words, Liebovich is seeing the machinations of political maturity, a woman of substance who’s not just learning the ropes but fashioning them into a noose to perhaps hang those that underestimate her… like Robert at Work in Progress who reacts to Palin’s speech before the Tea party conventioneers with this:
The first question that comes to mind is how many empties of moonshine does one have to return to accumulate $1,100?
I wasn’t even aware they had recycling projects in the banjo-pickin’, cousin-marryin’, less learnin’-more earnin’ areas of the country from which Mrs. Palin supporters hail.
While I suppose we should all take comfort the $1,100 spent on the conference admission will reduce attendees’ ammo budget for the next few months, liberals are not the only ones who should be terrified by the idea of President Palin. All bipeds without feathers should be terrified of the notion of that arrogant know-nothing with access to the nuclear codes.
Nothing would ensure the reelection of President Obama than running against Mrs. Palin as the GOP candidate which is why it will never happen. But we can dream…
Let’s ignore the fact that Robert can’t seem to correctly reference the story he cites as to the convention’s admission price (it was $349 and not $1,100). Let’s instead hope that he and other liberals continue to make light not only of Palin’s abilities but of those who find her striking a chord.
It will make this November (and November in 2012) that much sweeter.
By the way, I left the following at Robert’s place but expect it to disappear within minutes… perhaps some of you can stop by and gently chide the man for his lapses:
Re-read the story you’ve cited and get your numbers straight… 1,100 paid $349 to get into the convention… twice you mention an $1,100 admission price… I’m thinking you need a teleprompter…