Dear Ms. Palin:
Well. By now, your little mash note on Facebook has been thoroughly and righteously debunked and Mr. Olbermann has manged to, in his own whimsical style, give you the rhetorical equivalent of a public flogging.
EDIT: 8-6-10 Embed lost in Import. Original Keith Olbermann video not found. Look it up yourself, please.
Now, there has been much written about your statement over the last few days. Some of it analytical like the PolitiFact article linked above. But a lot of it has been shall we say, a bit more visceral in tone.
Now while I understand and sympathize with this tone. I’m going to try to avoid it for right now. I will be blunt. I will choose analogies with questionable subject matter. But I will do my best to avoid direct anger.
So, here’s the thing.
You will never be elected President of the United States.
Not going to happen.
Not in a blue moon.
The probability of you being elected President is somewhere between the Sun going nova in the next 72 hours and the release of a Carrie Prejean/Eddie Deezen sex tape.
(Don’t give me that look. I warned you about the analogies.)
The simple fact is that your favorability ratings have been dropping since the convention last year as seen by this recent Washington Post poll.
Palin favorability in Washington Post-ABC News polls %favorable (% strongly favorable) Post-Conv.* Now Change in pts.All 58% (35%) 40% (20%) -18 (-15) Democrats 34 (12) 20 (11) -14 ( -1)Republicans 88 (66) 70 (41) -18 (-24)Independents 60 (35) 40 (17) -20 (-18) Liberals 27 ( 9) 18 ( 8) -9 ( -1)Moderates 58 (28) 30 (12) -28 (-16)Conservatives 77 (58) 61 (35) -16 (-23) Wh. evang. Prots. 77 (53) 62 (33) -15 (-20) *Post-convention poll was registered voters; July poll among all adults.Last September about eight in 10 Americans said they were registered to vote.Yes, your numbers are still high with conservative Republicans but eventhey've taken a hit in the last few months. And the numbers for Dems andIndies is sinking fast.And the fact that fewer and fewer people are identifying themselves asRepublicans. Look at this from FiveThirtyEight.com.
It’s probably also the case that whether Republican party identification is in fact continuing to decline or merely flatlining at a low number is somewhat immaterial from the standpoint of the party’s strategy. If only a quarter or so of the country identifies itself as Republican by the time we get to November 2010, the Democrats will probably gain another couple of seats in the Senate (principally because of the numerous retirements from Republicanincumbents), while maintaining a large enough majority in the House toessentially give them carte blanche – they will also have the White House through at least January, 2013, of course. Partisan identification ebbs and flows — it does so more than many Democrats, who have recently had the better of things, would like to acknowledge. But the ebbs and flows can sometimes be years or even decades long and the GOP probably needs a better strategy than doing the same old thing and merely hoping for a reversal of momentum.
Bottom line, your base is shrinking. At this point, the politically smart thing to do would be to find common cause with the moderates and liberals and expand your base. But instead, by yelling that Obama is creating death panels when he clearly is not is appealing to a small segment of your potential audience.
That’s a fine strategy if you’re a indie rock band. If you’re trying to win public office and create workable public policy…not so much.
And to make matters worse, the lies you are telling (Yes, I said lies! As in, Liar, Liar, Pants on fire! Which, by the way, must be a wonderful example for your children.) are the sort of lies that can scare people and make them consider acts of rashness.
Look, your followers, for whatever reasons, clearly trust you. And if someone I trusted came to me and said that someone was planning to kill my mother, I’d yell “Hell to the No” and start doing anything in my power to stop that from happening. As would most people.
When you tell people that Obama plans to kill their parents, what kind of reaction would you expect?
And the only reason that you even consider this choice of action is to remain in the public spotlight in prep for a 2012 run which you have no chance of winning!
But in the meantime, you are agitating your followers to such an extent that one of them might do something profoundly stupid and violent. And that is the last thing we need right now.
So to sum up, Ms. Palin.
You will not win the presidency in 2012. More importantly, you do not deserve to win the presidency.
You are a liar.
You are a hypocrite.
You are a lousy administrator.
And frankly, you don’t even seem to have the stomach for the job. Hell, you resigned halfway though your term as Governor because you were tired of the media “making stuff up”.
On the plus side, you probably gave Hillary Clinton the best laugh she had in years, just before she headed out to her back yard to make sure no one dumped Vince Foster’s body out there during the night.
So, you may ask, if all this is true, why even bother writing you an open letter. Why not just let nature take it’s course and let karma do the heavy lifting?
Because, it’s not just about you anymore.
We are on the edge of entering a very dangerous period in history. Best case scenario, we get by with just one Timothy McVeigh like incident. Worst case, civil war that kills thousands of innocent people.
And why you did not set these events in motion, you have had a hand in moving them along. You will be one of many who set the wheels in motion.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. These are still just shadows of what may be, not what will be. They can be stopped.
And you could be the one who stops it.
And all you have to say is two words. I LIED!
Not “I was mistaken”. Not “I was just expressing my Opinion”. You have to come out and say the words, “I Lied”.
Because it may be the only way to defuse the free floating anger that you have helped to gin up.
Because if someone on your side takes that extra step and crosses the line into violence, you will have been one of many who encouraged it.
Or you can be the one who tried to stop it.
Yes, many of your hard core supporters will call you traitor and desert you. Any deal you have in the works with Fox News will be thrown out. Book deals may dry up.
But as I said before, this is not about you, is it?
It’s about this country and it’s people. All of it’s people, not just the ones who agree with you.
There’s a quote by writer May Sarton that I’ve always kept close to me.
“One must think like a hero to behave like a merely decent human being”.
I am not asking you to support Health Care reform, Ms. Palin. I am simply asking to to try to put the breaks on the rage out there.
You can be a hero, Ms. Palin.
All you have to do is behave like a merely decent human being.
EDIT: 6:57. Cross posted at “DailyKos”.