Donald Trump

How Sarah Palin Led the GOP to Donald Trump

Why is the Republican establishment objecting to the future they helped create?

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Palin and Trump
Credit: aj.hanson1 / photo on flickr

During Mitt Romney's recent speech denouncing Donald Trump as "a fraud," a stark question arose: How did the Republican Party go, in four years, from nominating a sober grown-up with a record of achievement in the public and private sectors to embracing a loudmouthed playboy with a string of bankruptcies and no experience in government? 

Remember when George W. Bush vowed to "restore honor and dignity to the White House"? Those qualities are no longer in demand. Say what you will about Romney, you would trust him with your wallet or your daughter. Trump? Not a chance. 

It's not always possible to identify the moment when a journey to destruction began. But in the case of the Republican Party, there is no doubt: Friday, Aug. 29, 2008. That day, presidential nominee John McCain announced that his running mate would be Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. It was a test for McCain and the GOP rank and file. Both failed, and the party has never recovered. 

The problem is not that Palin was a poor candidate who helped drag the ticket to defeat. The problem is that she was celebrated for qualities that were irrelevant and excused for defects that should have been disqualifying. Instead of recognizing her inadequacy, Republicans hailed her backcountry hockey-mom persona, her scorn for the "spinelessness" of elites, her inflammatory rhetoric and her inexperience in the matters a vice president and president have to handle. 

Some conservatives weren't caught up in the adulation, but many who should have known better were. Former Dan Quayle speechwriter Lisa Schiffren gushed, "It couldn't get much better than that." Wall Street Journal columnist Daniel Henninger sneered at skeptics who thought Palin didn't "have sufficient experience," commending her as a "grounded, common-sense person." 

The late Sen. Fred Thompson, R-Tenn., extolled her at the GOP national convention as "a breath of fresh air" and bragged that she was "the only candidate who knows how to field-dress a moose." Her fiery address sent the delegates into paroxysms of ecstasy. 

The ensuing months and years exposed Palin as a glib egomaniac with a penchant for lying who knew little about national and international affairs (and cared less). But none of the discoveries did much damage. 

Even after abruptly resigning as governor, she remained a Republican star and a tea party favorite whose endorsement was coveted by GOP candidates. Fox News hired her. She became an annual draw at the Conservative Political Action Conference. Her book Going Rogue sold more than 2 million copies. 

Through the years, she made it all about Sarah, the fearless "mama grizzly" who scorned the "lamestream media," referred to the president as "Barack Hussein Obama" and defended waterboarding as "how we baptize terrorists." Her hubris, demagoguery and irresponsibility were a heady mixture that many could not get enough of—and that no one could match. 

Until this year, that is, when Trump appeared on the scene and captivated a large share of the electorate. His contrasting biography—a luxury-loving, high-rise-living, Ivy League-educated Manhattan tycoon who would rather play golf than shoot big game—obscures the ways in which he resembles Palin. 

Like her, he substitutes certitude for understanding. Like her, he revels in self-infatuation. Like her, he heaps contempt on his critics. Like her, he exploits a pervasive sense of victimhood among whites who distrust minorities. As with Palin, it's the distinctive persona and abrasive attitude that attract followers. 

They see Trump as a man of great talents who offends the establishment because he understands and speaks for the common folk. Trump supporters don't care that he has only a shaky grasp of vital issues. Knowledge, many of them obviously believe, is overrated. Ideology is secondary. Gut instincts are what really matter. 

That was the appeal of Palin, too. So it was no surprise to see her endorse him. Palin paved the way for a trash-talking narcissist to take over the party. Their partnership was destiny. 

William Kristol, editor of the conservative Weekly Standard, wrote recently in opposition to Trump, calling him the "epitome of vulgarity" and his campaign a form of "two-bit Caesarism." But in the summer of 2008, Kristol called on McCain to choose Palin, who fits the same description. 

In wrapping its arms around her, the Republican Party sold its soul. Trump is just here to collect. 

© Copyright 2016 by Creators Syndicate Inc. 

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  1. Also add, what the GOP and media did to Ron Paul helped to hurt the party. That, along with all the BS about limited gov’t spewed by the GOP, to include the debt and many other things that individuals were concerned about went largely ignored. The party did a great job to ruin itself, and is further doing so by conspiring to ignore the voters and attempting to choose a candidate for them. Paul Ryan? Romney?! They’re serious too.

    Well, if they try this nonsense, the GOP might finally be done and gone.

    1. That, along with all the BS about limited gov’t spewed by the GOP, to include the debt and many other things that individuals were concerned about went largely ignored.

      That’s true, but the people who support Trump must be different people or they’ve completely changed their focus. I mention that Trump has praised TARP, Obama’s stimulus, and the ideas behind Obamacare on conservative sites where Trump supporters group up, and they don’t give a shit at all about any of that, at least when Trump is involved. All they care about is immigration and free trade, and not being politically correct about it. They think immigration and free trade are the cause of most of America’s problems. Apparently TARP, the stimulus, and Obamacare aren’t so bad after all for them, or at least they pale in comparison to immigration and free trade.

      1. Because they are cast off democrats like ken has been saying. It’s just that their race and sexual preferences mean they’re not welcome there anymore. The establishment thought they would get these disaffected voters for nothing. Unfortunately they were themselves too fractured to prevent the hostile takeover and transformation into a white nationalist party.

        1. Are they voting in the Republican primaries though? Are they the ones commenting on Breitbart and the National Review (although most Trump supporters have completely boycotted National Review now)?

          1. Breitbart? What happened with the National Review? Man, I have some Googling to do…

        2. Cast off in the 80’s. I don’t think that qualifies them as Democrats anymore.

        3. I didn’t realize you had to be white and fascist to believe in the Constitution, the bible and the rule of law?
          Sounds a little bigoted to me…

      2. People that I know who are concerned about the budget, government regulation, and bailouts support Cruz.

    2. Yes, the GOP made itself irrelevant through an endless series of unforced errors.

  2. trash-talking narcissist

    This describes virtually every politician.

    The only real difference is that most of them are a bit more subtle in their trash talking.

    1. Yeah, the Democrats constant race-baiting and phoney war-on-women pandering to whip up their base over the years has nothing to do with the coarsening of political discourse. It’s all them damn Trumpublicans; we’ve never seen anything other than sober, reasoned debate before this.

  3. Republicans – they’re so uncouth!

    If only they would say all the right things, in all the right ways. You know, like on PBS or NPR.

  4. -Say what you will about Romney, you would trust him with your wallet or your daughter. Trump? Not a chance.

    Actually I’d trust either with them. And Palin as well.

    1. But sure as hell not Hillary.

    2. See, I’d trust essentially any politician with my wallet. They have connections who wipe their ass with more money than I have in there. And they don’t need a “Mitt Romney stole my wallet” circulating out there on the internet.

      Same goes for a daughter, except Bill Clinton is of course an exception.

  5. “…referred to the president as ‘Barack Hussein Obama’…”

    I thought that is his name. Since when does referring to a President’s middle name make one a “trash talking narcissist?”

    (Look everyone! I’m a trash talking narcissist: Franklin Delano Roosevelt; John Fitzgerald Kennedy; Lyndon Baines Johnson; George W. Bush; William Jefferson Clinton; Ronald Wilson Reagan; George Herbert Walker Bush; James Earl Carter, III; Richard Milhous Nixon; Dwight David Eisenhower..)

    1. Look, using Obama’s middle name is racist, just like criticizing his policies is racist. There can be no other explanation.

    2. Trump makes people who oppose him crazy.

      I’m voting for him in order to drive a very significant portion of American insane.

      Trump!

      For the LULZ

      1. Trump as President would make all the right heads explode.

      2. You’re goddamn right. Here’s your coat!

      3. I recently saw this sticker on Facebook:

        “I participated in the upcoming apocalypse.”

        The party leaders brought Trump on themselves.

    3. George NMN Washington, Abraham NMN Lincoln, ….

      1. Manny NMN Simon.

        My Dad. God rest his soul.

      2. George Hussein Washington, Bill Hussein Clinton, Margaret Hussein Thatcher, Richard Hussein Feynman…

    4. Just in case any of you want to trash talk my kids, use the following:
      Reason Sophia Spicer
      Liberty Ordeth Cranberry Spicer
      Justice Forall Sloopy Juneteenth Spicer

      1. Cranberry, I like that. No so sure about Ordeth or Juneteenth, they sound more like names made up after a few drinks, a good few drinks 🙂

        1. Juneteenth is a Texas holiday celebrating the end of slavery.

        2. No so sure about Ordeth or Juneteenth, they sound more like names made up after a few drinks, a good few drinks 🙂

          RAAAAACIST!!!!!!11!!!!!

          1. I thought you might have been joking (this is Reason after all) – but no Juneteenth really exists.
            I apologize, I learned something new today!

      2. Who got Juneteenth in there?

        And I see ‘Sophie’ and ‘Libby’–but what do you call Justice for short?

    5. Also, I thought the media always referred to mass killers by their full name. Therefore, every president should,always be referred to by his or her full name.

    6. Just after his election, I remember children singing a song of praise about Barak Hussein Obama.

      Something like:

      He says we all must lend a hand
      To make our country strong again.
      Barack Hussein Obama

      Gave me the same warm happy glow I get from watching children sing hymns to the glorious North Korean leader.

      1. You left out ‘mmm mmm mmm’

  6. What record of public achievement does Romney have? With nothing cited to back up the claim it just seems like horse shit to make it. Romneycare and what else?

    1. Let’s also ignore the fact that Romney was a weak candidate who was either unable or unwilling to go after Obama with serious harsh criticisms, and therefore managed to lose in spite of Obama’s terrible record.

    2. Four years ago, most of the media was trying to paint Romney as a dangerous right wing extremist despite being a NE Republican. As centrist as they come. A tax cheat. An out-touch trust-fund kid who made money banking on the misery of others.

      I find it odd that Reason is writing fondly of him. Even stranger that they are writing about bullshit like the dignity of the office.

      1. They are just publishing one man’s opinion. Pretty much par for the course from Chapman.

    3. What achievement does Romney have? Losing and unloseable race against an awful failed president. Dude, it takes some serious talent to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory like that.

    4. Willard Mitt Romney, if we’re sticking to the format.

      1. Mitt is a real name! I’ll have to apologize to SloopyinTEXAS.

    5. I grew up in Michigan when George Romney was governor, and a pretty good one. His kid is a thieving big businessman; the two should not be confused.

  7. How did the Republican Party go, in four years, from nominating a sober grown-up with a record of achievement in the public and private sectors (a weak loser who was responsible for basically the precursor to Obamacare and rolled over with a tepid campaign) to embracing a loudmouthed playboy with a string of bankruptcies and no experience in government (someone who actually addresses the concerns of the party’s base, no matter how crudely)?

    Yes, it is a mystery…

  8. What a ridiculous article. Palin was a weak pick by a weak candidate and has nothing to do with where the Republican Party is today.

    You want to blame somebody, look to the top of the tickets and the Congressional leadership. Romney, McCain, Boehner, McConnell, etc… Years of promising less government, less spending, less taxes – and always delivering more – has destroyed the conservative base support. Fooled them too many times and now they are pissed. I think the logical ones are breaking for Cruz but not all.

    Add in open primaries with the opportunity for blue-collar whites abandoned by the Democrats to express their frustration – and you have Trump.

    Palin had nothing to do with it other than as a leading indicator of how politics is becoming more crass and stupid than ever.

    1. Palin was explicitly chosen to shore up the libertarian wing of the Party. It did have that effect. It wasn’t enough.

      1. She was a Steve Forbes guy originally. McCain should have just picked Forbes if that was his intention – although I doubt Forbes would have put up with his shit.

      2. Plus, she would have been the best looking VP we’ve ever had.

        1. Taint sayin’ much…

    2. Trump/Palin is evidence that the WWE crowd has become politically aware. They balance out acedemia nicely in the “head-too-far-up-your-ass-to-vote” category.

    3. I think a big chunk would rather have Cruz, but now we know the party leadership would sooner see Hillary as President than a Republican they didn’t anoint themselves. So we have to go with someone who can beat Hillary without the help of the leadership. Trump is the only guy that fits the bill.

  9. Soooo Palin’s an awful woman, and Hillary is….

    1. A saint, clearly. Someone has to save us from the Rethuglikkkans who want to “put y’all back in chains”!

      1. “put y’all back in chains”

        Ah, yes, that takes me back. To a time, just 4 years ago, when politics was a respectful endeavor and no one ever said crass, mean lies about the other party’s candidates and politicians were all serious people. Top. Men. you might say. /sarc

    2. …less viscerally cringeworthy to those not thinking with their d**ks.

  10. Trump will remove honor and dignity from the White House?

    That would be an improvement.

    1. No shit.

      Somehow I don’t think he will be bowing to some shitbird king from Dumbfuckistan.

  11. So …. I did not realize that the Dem’s 2008 Presidential nominee had more qualifying government experience, or that he was devoid of bitter clinging demagoguery.

    I am better educated now, accordingly.

    1. Yeah, where are Reason’s editors? Did someone review this and actually go “yeah, makes alot of sense, let’s run with it!”?

      1. You say that like you think that they are actually Libertarian. The recent push to expand government recognition of personal relationships gave lie to that claim. Hell, how many voted for Obama? They run Chapman articles. They have run about 10 to 1 articles on Trump compared to the Hildebeast. Obama has been the President of the phone and the pen for 7 years and they just now got around to fearing “authoritarianism”. Nick isn’t going to get hired at HuffPo going easy on the competition, is he?

        The commentariat is the only thing libertarian about reason, and about half of them are more anarchist than libertarian.

        1. That is a pretty fair analysis.

          Credit where credit is due: They are good on freedom of speech, which is kind of a big deal. Other than that, not so much.

          1. 2nd and 4th amendments too. Plus the also run Judge Napalotano’s articles and he’s been hitting the Hildebeast pretty hard over the email scandal.

        2. You nailed it. They should change their name from “Reason” to “Emotion” because they prefer these knee-jerk Trump-hating articles over principled, reasoned ones. It’s quite sad actually.

  12. Thank goodness the current party in the White House doesn’t embrace empty suits.

    1. Ol’ Two Blasts Biden is the intellect of the century!

  13. You’d trust Romney with your wallet? The guy who created Romneycare?

    1. Yeah, that is hilarious. That was a real coffee through the nose line.

  14. “Your wallet, motherfucker! Who’s in it?”

  15. OK, I’m not a Palin fan, but Chapman is claiming that she is *worse* than other politicians – how so?

    1. Becuause that’s what they say at all the COCKTAIL PARTIEZ!!!111!!!!!!

    2. Because that’s the message the DNC invented for their media and pop culture sycophants.

    3. It has nothing to do with her positions I think. She, like Trump, lacks presidential gravitas. POTUS is as much a figurehead as a policy maker/enforcer. Try to imagine either one of them representing the U.S. anywhere. There is a protocol of statecraft that serious countries must project to be taken seriously. Further, they are both perfect examples of “Ugly Americans”, at a time when many Americans are trying not to be.

      Obama, Bush, McCain, Clinton, Romney, Dole, Gore, Paul and Kerry, all have some Presidential gravitas. Cruz and Biden do as well to a much lesser degree (although Cruz’s face may be too punchworthy to be).

  16. Palin?

    Would.

    1. + Bristol

      1. + Willow

  17. There’s a lot about Palin’s politics that I don’t like, but what irked me was how the “lamestream media” demonized her for personal traits that were unrelated to her office (at best) or were admirable (at last to some people). I got a strong feeling that our betters didn’t like her for her “traditional” style of femininity, religion, and/or “folksy” style. I’m accepting (“liberal”) on social issues, but I’ve known a LOT of traditional women, and it’s hard for me to watch them demonized for living their lives the way they want to. If they would have just stuck to what about her politics and administrative style they didn’t like, it wouldn’t come off as so douchey.

    And no, I don’t think she brought down the Republican party. John McCain would get the blame if that was the case.

    1. Let me repeat:

      Palin was explicitly chosen to shore up the libertarian wing of the Party. It did have that effect. It wasn’t enough.

      1. Palin was chosen for her vag, not anything particularly libertarian

      2. Are you saying Libertarian = Stupid? Cuz that’s kind of what it sounds like you are saying.

    2. Bingo. Support for Palin and Trump is visceral. They talk tough because you need toughness to defeat a tyrannical, totalitarian opposition that does not argue, lies compulsively, steals (via overregulation, Fed monetarism, fraud, and incompetence), robs (via taxation), extorts (via race baiting), impugns (accuses of hate with no evidence), spies (NSA), that assaults (mob violence and police raids), riots, loots, and murders like feral rabid dogs whenever some fake grievance is manufactured.

      You need men to take a stand and throw the lies and insults right back in their miserable, worthless faces, and then be willing to fight hand to hand when the predator takes it as an identity attack and bullrushes you. You need to be willing to shoot dead anyone who is attacking you physically or invading your property. When we listen to Trump we FEEL his willingness to confront the enemy. When Palin talks we FEEL her admiration for men who will confront the enemy instead of bend over an take it up the ass from Obama, Hillary, Wasserman-Schultz, Sanders, Rachel Maddow, and the thugs in Black Lives Matter.

      Why nitpick about ideological details when we all know that if the financial system collapses, the ferals will be out for YOUR shit, and no police will protect you because they will be striking or quitting due to pay cuts and slashed budgets, or hyperinflation. We need men of action, and Trump is the only one who has a credible tone of combat in his voice.

      1. In other words, Trump is the candidate of man-children who peaked in high school and now try to ape high-status behaviors that they learned on the internet from other man-children who peaked in high school.

    3. Whoever ultimately chose her gets that honor.

  18. So I should add Palin to the official Hitler list? I am going to have to get a bigger list, they all won’t fit.

    1. Just replace the list with one line: “Any politician with an ‘R’ after their name.” It’ll save a lot of time.

  19. Brilliant piece of post hoc reasoning (drink!). Chapman at his purest.

    1. Did you know that the declining marriage rate in Vermont has caused a decline in honeybee colonies?

      1. I absolutely love that site and use it frequently.

  20. There’s more than one way to skin a libertarian moment.

  21. Like her, he exploits a pervasive sense of victimhood among whites who distrust minorities.

    I’m not so sure that it’s a “distrust [of] minorities”. Many white people are just tired of the incessant ridicule they and their culture get from progressives and other PC hacks. When minorities speak of racial pride they are lauded. But when white people merely defend their culture, they’re ridiculed. This is the backlash that’s been brewing for some years now.

    1. Incessant ridicule as well as demonization as the cause and root of all that is wrong in the world. Yeah, a backlash was inevitable.

      1. I can’t understand how people don’t see Hyperbolical’s point. There is a reason I’m a libertarian, and it has a lot to do with the fact I grew up in a Unitarian Universalist church, and therefore was always exposed to the far left, hippies, and the like. I’ve always been relatively liberal on social issues, but a lot of my political ideology came from examining the other arguments and finding them excessively wanting. And it didn’t help that while my parents did more than their fair share to help the church succeed (even while my mom voted for Clinton twice), they were demonized by the lefties at church for being moderates. It got to the point that I was telling the youth groups of the two more lefty branches in my hometown that I was a libertarian because it would indeed put their parents out of work and help them maybe grow up and be responsible, instead of just jackass SJWs.

    2. Public skool taught me that white people cannot have culture, and that to speak of such is racist!

      1. They only appropriate.

    3. Yeah Chapman, see how easy it is to hide behind baseless accusations of hate and bigotry? Go apply at MSNBC if that’s your new anal shtick. You hear Trump or Palin speak angrily about lawless border incursion and you play the hate card like a dipshit identity whore.

      Not all anger is hatred, and it’s ok to speak in generalities like “Mexicans coming over the border is a problem”. If you take it literally, have semantic conniption, wet your pants, and change the subject from illegal immigration to bigotry, your no better than a spoiled whiny 8 year old who screams “you hate me!” when he is grounded by Daddy for shoplifting.

      Be a fuckin man. Speak general truth. Quit tiptoeing on eggshells and grow a pair. We have a fight coming. Be fuckin ready.

  22. “How did the Republican Party go, in four years, from nominating a sober grown-up with a record of achievement in the public and private sectors…”

    An east coast liberal and the architect of Romneycare? I had a better chance of winning than he did. Hey Steve, who did you vote for in 2008?

    “Palin paved the way for a trash-talking narcissist to take over the party. Their partnership was destiny.”

    The degree to which the party hacks are out of touch is just astounding. I have not heard a single one of them say anything that indicates they understand the rise of Trump. Not one.

    Let me give you a hint Steve. It is real simple. The average voter is not a politician or a hack pundit. Their concern is for the good of the country. They don’t give a shit about party politics or their personal standing in the party. They want what is good for our country; for the economy, for our standing in the world, for the future. The Republican party has proven over and over that their word is no good, that they care only about internal party politics and that they don’t give a flying fuck for the good of the country. They cave to the Dems over and over and over, giving them everything wanted to a party that is wildly out of touch with the average American. They sell out their base at every opportunity.

    1. Trump stands up and says “Fuck that. Let’s make the country great again”. That is a message that sells after two terms of a guy that bows to foreign kings. I think they are mistaken putting their trust in the guy, but hey, who else is saying that? When you and the rest of the party hacks denigrate Trump, a man selling what people want, you are showing contempt for those voters.

      When crowds start throwing rotten fruit and eggs at you, instead of bemoaning how coarse and backward they are maybe you should look into why they are doing it in the first place. Maybe it isnt they aren’t the ones who are wrong.

      1. +1000 Silent Majority.

        Chapman finds it inconceivable that American voters could see the major issues differently from him, and others in the know, without some sort of confusion or idiocy on their part.

      2. 2 terms? At lest 4. Never forget that Obama is merely Bush in blackface.
        Everything you want to lay at Obama’s door, and there’s no shortage of vileness to lay there, lands equally well on Bush.
        The key take-away here is *there are no good guys*. There are no “good teams”.
        They are all, without exception, slavers. Rotten to the core.
        That you might prefer the boot on your face to be “proudly made in America” versus “worn by a suspected Muslim” is no concern of mine. It’s the boot that matters. Everything else is a distraction.
        Yeah, Palin greatly enabled the Trump phenomenon. So did Reagan, Clinton, Bush, Bush Jr, and Obama. Nixon and Carter as well. Remember the wage and price freeze? Neither does anybody else, but they blame all the economic terrorism on the Democrats. But with few exceptions, the grossest violations of economic liberty have come from the right.
        Feh.

        1. But with few exceptions, the grossest violations of economic liberty have come from the right.

          I respectfully beg to differ. The grossest violations of economic liberty have come from the bureaucracy–little by little, regulation by regulation they add up to grosser violations than those from the left/right politicians.

      3. When you and the rest of the party hacks denigrate Trump, a man selling what people want, you are showing contempt for those voters.

        Most voters are morons and deserve all the contempt that they are shown. Chapman is an ass, and I disagree with what he wrote, but I’m sick of the deference to “the people” – the same people who voted in Obama twice (and all of the rest of these idiot politicians).

    2. How the Game Is Played

      Short version: if either Party solved problems what would they run on next time? Easier to fix nothing and blame it on “gridlock”.

  23. Ok, now you’re not even trying. Skip the Palin and go straight for the Booooosh! You know you want to.

    1. I can never keep it straight which of the X…man hacks is the Booosh! guy and which is the Jooooos! guy. Richman? Chapman?

      Don’t answer, I don’t really care. Fuck’em both.

  24. The McCain candidacy was a ship taking on water before Palin’s selection for VP. Being the MSM’s favorite Republican may be an advantage when running against other Republican’s but it is no good when running against a Democrat, and one that the MSM was slavering over for racist reasons (Obama’s similar lack of experience to Palin’s matters not).

    Chapman’s attitude is part of what caused the rise of Trump. Republican’s are expected to fight under Marquis of Queensbury rules while the Democrat’s can play by MMA rules and not get raked over the coals. A pol who can break the double standard looks highly attractive to a lot of people.

    You are part of the problem, Chapman.

    1. Spot on.

    2. Right on. The punditry is the enabler.

    3. I think I am developing a man-crush on you, Mickey.

  25. Chapman sounds like another progressive suffering from Palin Derangement Syndrome.

    ‘The problem is not that Palin was a poor candidate who helped drag the ticket to defeat.’
    I don’t think that’s true. McCain’s campaign got a nice boost from the announcement of her as VP. Of course the progressives went crazy. McCain stayed in the lead until he suspended his campaign and went back to Washington on account of the financial crisis. It was a bad call and he went down hill from there.

    1. McCain stayed in the lead until he suspended his campaign and went back to Washington on account of the financial crisis.McCain stayed in the lead until he suspended his campaign and went back to Washington on account of the financial crisis.

      And he might have still been able to save it if he had voted no on TARP. Shit, he didn’t even have to do it out of principle. He could have waited until it had enough votes to pass and then made a symbolic no vote (one of the oldest tricks in the book). No one would have noticed or cared that he voted after it was already going to pass, and he might have been able to win over a lot of the angry people who were blowing up their rep’s phones over it.

      1. No one would have noticed or cared that he voted after it was already going to pass, and he might have been able to win over a lot of the angry people…

        But your scenario seems to assume that McCain would not ordinarily have supported TARP. I think he did. Like too many others in Washington, McCain is a Keynesian. And like many a Keynesian, he believes that economic activity and economic growth are the same.

        1. Most pols in Washington know nothing of economics, even less than internet commenters. They just parrot what they are told.

        2. WOW!
          Lord Rollingpin: BINGO!
          Loki: Yeah!
          Hyperbolical: Fuck Yeah!
          The three best posts of the entire discussion.

  26. So Trump is now Sarah Pain’s fault? I thought it was all BOOOOOSH’S fault.

    1. We’re moving on.

  27. This is why we roll with the pnches of life.

    http://www.Anon-Net.tk

  28. This is why I love Sarah Palin

  29. …the Republican Party sold its soul. Trump is just here to collect.

    The implication here being that Trump is, what, the devil? OK…

    I think Trump would be a horrible president and won’t vote for him (or Her Cankleness or Comrade Bern) for many reasons that have been covered ad nauseum, but the Trump Derangement Syndrome is getting a little absurd.

    1. The fact that the Palin derangement syndrome is still going on is equally if not more absurd. I wouldn’t pick her for my jeopardy team put she’s at least as smart as half of congress. Extremely low bar yes but makes her being “the dumb one” rather absurd.

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  31. I think Trump’s backers have the right idea in wanting to demonstrate that the voters have no need for politicians to be politicians. Last night I was talking to a Conservative Party enrollee who’s for Trump because, “We don’t need another politician. Trump is a regular guy?very rich, but still a regular guy.” I agree that it would be terribly refreshing for the voters to show that governing does not require expertise acquired by governing, but is something people from any walk of life can do equally well.

    1. Trump is a regular guy who uses government to screw over the little guy. He’s a regular guy like Bernie Madoff.

      The rank stupidity and illogic of Trump supporters is unbelievable.

      1. So, Trump know how the game is played. That’s useful if he’s reasonably sincere. If not, it doesn’t much matter. It’s a gamble as always.

  32. until I looked at the draft of $7079 , I didnt believe that…my… mother in law had been actualie bringing home money in there spare time at there labtop. . there sisters neighbour haz done this for under 4 months and resantly cleard the dept on their place and purchased a new Lotus Carlton .try here ..

    ?? W?W?W. A?l?p?h?a-C?a?r?e?e?r?s.C?O?M

  33. until I looked at the draft of $7079 , I didnt believe that…my… mother in law had been actualie bringing home money in there spare time at there labtop. . there sisters neighbour haz done this for under 4 months and resantly cleard the dept on their place and purchased a new Lotus Carlton .try here ..

    ?? W?W?W. A?l?p?h?a-C?a?r?e?e?r?s.C?O?M

  34. until I looked at the draft of $7079 , I didnt believe that…my… mother in law had been actualie bringing home money in there spare time at there labtop. . there sisters neighbour haz done this for under 4 months and resantly cleard the dept on their place and purchased a new Lotus Carlton .try here ..

    ?? W?W?W. A?l?p?h?a-C?a?r?e?e?r?s.C?O?M

  35. “T”he problem is that Obama was celebrated for qualities that were irrelevant and excused for defects that should have been disqualifying. Instead of recognizing her inadequacy”

    FIFY

  36. a glib egomaniac with a penchant for lying who knew little about national and international affairs

    I had to re-read this to make sure you weren’t talking about Obama.

  37. I’ll vote for Palin before I’ll vote for Romney. Palin was the only good part of McCains campaign.
    the self righteous narcissism of this websites authors is getting way to thick.

  38. Well, the Democrats trotted out a vacuous empty suit with little experience or real skill set, and he got elected twice. BOTH parties have been trotting out crap since 2000. And that’s if you can stomach the Clintons prior to that, so might go back to 1992. The last person that seemed to have anything resembling statesmanship, IMO, was Bush I, and he annoyed the hell out of me.

    I’m not one for conspiracy theories, but it seems plain to be that (whether by semi-consequence or full blown design) D.C. largely runs independently of the President, who in turn runs fairly independently from Congress. We elect a legislature that is pretty much useless, a President that is a figurehead, and a bureaucracy that pretty much does what it wants.

  39. This is truly a shallow analysis, based on the same sort of surface-perceptions-equal-reality shtick that populists themselves thrive on. The Republican Party neither created nor embraced Palin or Trump, except in the sense that the leaders of each party, thinking the way the writer of this article does, dismissed voter priorities for decades that were neither politically profitable nor easy for government to accomplish, and thereby allowed the populist pressure and resentment to build up to the point of explosion. To them, these issues– political correctness, for example– were a bargaining chip to be tossed into a pot in trade for those that were politically profitable and easy for government to accomplish– lower taxes and more military spending. Lather, rinse, repeat.

    When you don’t keep an eye on the boiler pressure and let some off now and then, don’t blame the steamboat for blowing up. Blame yourself.

  40. “The ensuing months and years exposed Palin as a glib egomaniac with a penchant for lying who knew little about national and international affairs (and cared less).”

    So, a politician then?

  41. Trump is the Republican front runner for three reasons: Mitch McConnell, John Boehner and John Boehner’s mini-me, Paul Ryan!

  42. The rot goes back further to 2000, when Dubya Bush was called the winner of a debate *because* he sounded less informed than Gore.

    1. Go even further back, like Andrew Jackson’s Log Cabin and Cider. American populism has gone in and out of style, but it’s always been around. Matter of fact, it’s very likely that Jackson was the victim of a brokered election, similar to what’s being considered against Trump.

      Politics. Politics never changes.

  43. It’s not Palin. It’s Obama. Dude. “Bring a gun to a knife fight.” Who says that? “You lost, I won, shut up” Whoever said that in the history of the union? Obama! I won’t continue, we know the quotes. Trump, the man who lies comes directly from the things the Democratic Party has been feeding us all for years. Palin for all her little dumbness, is nothing compared with the other Party. It makes me sad to have Reason blame a semi libertarian for Trump. Hate comes from the left or the nasty right. Same place as we should know. Trump is not a libertarian or a conservative. He comes directly from the Progressive/Liberal side of hate and hurt. Not all of his supporters… but a lot of them. Hate is not libertarian. Hate isn’t conservative. Because believe it or not both require thought. Hate != thought

  44. Yet another neo-con whining about their failures by blaming a private citizen? Palin’s popularity and stage are because she speaks for the bulk of the Republican core voters. The neo-con ‘elite’ fail to remember the crowds Palin spontaneously generated during her sabotaged campaigning. If McCain had been half as on the ball, we’d be looking at Palin’s second term coming up.

    And where does this neo-con get this ‘lie’ nonsense? All that BS is direct from the RNC/DNC combined cesspool.

  45. Steve, you’ve only got half the story.

    Yes, the Republican party should have thought twice before taking Sarah Palin for the Veep nomination. But her kind of rhetoric is only effective on an electorate that feels betrayed by their own party leadership.For almost 8 years, the Republicans have done little to nothing to stop the internationalist and Marxist agendas of the President.

    Every election, the Republicans beg and plead to have the conservatives turn out. And then every time the election cycle’s over, they tell conservatives to go sit in the corner and shut up, and they play more big-business Democrat-lite games instead of stonewalling Obama like we hired them to do.

    You know what we learned from Mitt Romney? Every time Republicans start talking about “acting Presidential,” we lose.

    You know what we learned from John Boehner and Mitch McConnell? Party leadership are spineless wimps that kowtow to Democrats because they’re afraid of being called racists.

    I’d rather have had Mitt Romney in 2012, but apparently nice guys finish last.
    I’d rather have Cruz or Rubio over Trump any day, but we now know that party leadership would rather lose the election than see anyone elected that they didn’t anoint.

    Sarah Palin didn’t do this, Steve. Party leadership did this. Donald Trump is the GOP elite’s chickens coming home to roost.

  46. I am so sick of this tired, uneducated, unresearched meme. Multiple universities, including Bradley (below) have done academic studies of the idea Palin pulled down the McCain ticket. It’s demonstrably false. http://bit.ly/2008PalinPolls

    McCain was actually languishing badly against Barack until Palin was announced. She ignited a groundswell not dissimilar to Trump, attracting frustrated Reagan conservatives who were tired of being promised the moon by the GOP, only to be relegated to the back of the bus when they began selling their souls for English title’s and lands. (yes, Braveheart ref). McCain’s respectability soared until the Lehman Brothers fiasco and when McCain suspended his campaigning to go back to the Senate – looking completely lost while Obama continued his smug aura of confidence – his polls never recovered.

    Of course with an enormous “undecided” favorable rating – and negative media coverage 24/7 by the Democratic part, freaking out that the GOP might nominate a successful, accomplished female that didn’t fit their neofeminst liberal voter block lock, her negatives did rise substantially. (She NEVER said she could see Russia from her house – she said you could see a tip of Russia from the farthest northerly point in AK – but to this day people accept the SNL version by 5:1. Advertising – even nonfactual – works)

  47. The reason the media spends so much time on Trump is to divert attention away from the fact that Democrats have gone so far to the extreme left that they are running open Marxists for US president! In my lifetime, commie thugs with Sanders ideology vowed to bury us and the US Govt trained us to kill them and sent us overseas to do just that. While Reagan was waging a brilliant war to defeat the evil Soviet Union, Sanders took his bride there on their honeymoon! If you thought Howard Dean was crazy – and he is – then Bernie Sanders belongs in a padded cell….along with much of the rest of the Democrat Party! Instead of promising a chicken in every pot….Sanders promise is a fruitcake in every closet! And Hillary Clinton is so corrupt she makes John Edwards look ethical! One can only wonder if it isn’t a giant diversionary tactic. All these pundits waxing hysterical over the proposition that a free enterprise capitalist like Donald Trump or a conservative Constitutionalist like Cruz may become President. Yes, a frantic diversionary effort to draw attention away from the fact that the Democrats have gone so far to the extreme left that they are running open Marxists for US President. Apparently Howard Dean wasn’t crazy enough. Sanders took his wife to the Soviet Union for their honeymoon! Hillary Clinton, whose lies, corruption and crimes makes John Edwards look totally ethical. Yes, if I were a member of the “protect Democrats at all cost” journo-caucus, I’d be frantic too.

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  49. Correction: It is everything the GOPe DIDN’T do that created Trump.
    That and their out-right persecution of the TEA Party. In many ways, they are worst than the Left.
    And it’s way too late in the day to attempt putting the toothpaste back in the tube.
    It is as if the GOP wants Clinton.
    What the GOP doesn’t understand, they are mortally wounded, Self-inflicted.
    No matter what happens in November, I will never again vote with the Establishment candidate. Ever.

  50. …just a sec.

    ?obscures the ways in which he resembles 0bama.

    Like him, he substitutes certitude for understanding. Like him, he revels in self-infatuation. Like him, he heaps contempt on his critics. Like him, he exploits a pervasive sense of victimhood among whites who distrust minorities. As with 0bama, it’s the distinctive persona and abrasive attitude that attract followers.

    …there, fixed.

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  52. As a Vietnam Veteran who has been hammered by the elite policies of both the Democrat and The Republican Party. Now you are saying the average folk cannot chose a candidate of their choice. As a Cruze supporter, the average Joe who wants to support Trump good luck to him. Maybe it is time to bring an outsider into the People’s House and have some Moose stew.

  53. before I saw the bank draft which had said $9426 , I didnt believe that…my… brother woz like actualy earning money part-time at there labtop. . there uncles cousin has done this 4 less than fifteen months and by now repaid the dept on there place and got a great new Mini Cooper . read the full info here …

    Clik This Link inYour Browser??

    ? ? ? ? http://www.SelfCash10.com

  54. last election was a lesser of 2 evils situation. Which candidate is going to be less effective at fixing our problems while slowly adding to them. I actually miss thinking about that.

    With Hillary/Trump I am thinking about which will cause less open violence in the streets….I’ll take Romney or 4 more Obama years over Hillary/Trump, an ineffective business as usual candidate is better than an effective imperialist or an effective mercantile dictator

  55. Palin was a plus to McCain’s ticket at the time, luring in some who would not go out to vote for a RINO. “Like her, he exploits a pervasive sense of victimhood among whites who distrust minorities.” How exactly is Palin guilty of exploiting whites who distrust minorities? It must be nice to be the kind of journalist who needs no examples, only feelings and gut instincts.

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