Palin Is the Right’s Obama

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


Via Andrew, here’s an astute point from a writer at the conservative Power Line blog:

We conservatives have had a good time ridiculing the Obama phenomenon, especially its messianic feel — the willingness of its adherents to pour so much hope and belief into such an empty, or at least incomplete, vessel — and its elevation of “narrative” over substance.

It turns out that we were dying to have basically the same experience.

The Right has repeatedly accused Obama of being a blank slate upon which his supporters draw what they want to see. Whatever “hope” and “change” are to them, that’s what Obama supposedly stands for. But my experience at the Republican convention was that Palin plays the exact same role for the GOP. I mentioned this in my video dispatch. If John McCain was too old and stiff, she was the new blood and the energy the ticket needed. If McCain was too moderate, she had the conservative credentials the ticket needed. If McCain was too wishy-washy on abortion, she was the committed pro-lifer the ticket needed. And so on.

The difference is, Obama has spent significant amounts of time defining the change he seeks — just look at the middle 20 minutes of his convention speech from Denver. Palin has never made that effort — she’s only been around a week and has never spoken to the press!

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate