Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Tuesday Political Links

So I said to my brother, "I'm thinking of doing a Tuesday entry with a lot of information about Sarah Palin. But I feel that she's taken over the debate already, and I don't want to feed into that phenomenon." And my brother said, "Uh, you have about five readers. I don't think you need to worry about having a large impact on the direction of the media." To which I said, "Fair enough."

So, let's take a look at Sarah Palin, shall we? There is a rapidly expanding pool of information out there about her, so this is just some links I find particularly interesting. There are a lot of issues not addressed by what's below (Troopergate, for example.)

First off, let's let her speak for herself. Here is her speech at the RNC. And here is her interview with Charlie Gibson on ABC. And then we have a comment on the speech, and a comment on the interview.

There is a letter by a fellow Wasillan going around that provides a good overview.

Other Alaskans speak out, too - the Alaskan Women Reject Palin rally is bigger than the rally to welcome her home. In fact, it is the biggest political rally in Alaska ever. Check out the pictures, they're great!

For me, one of the most important issues surrounding Palin right now is the rape kit issue. The town of Wasilla charged victims of rape for their rape kits while she was mayor. This went on for four years, until the state legislature outlawed it. Despite the McCain campaign saying that Palin had no idea that this was going on, there is now clear evidence that she did know, and endorsed it. (A rape kit is forensic evidence that a rape happened, and it's very hard to get a rape conviction without one. This is like if your house was broken into and the police charged you for them to collect fingerprints.) Since Alaska leads the national in forcible rapes per capita, and Palin has done nothing to address this since taking office, this all adds up to a pretty depressing picture.

Salon.com explains the whole killing-wolves-from-airplanes issue...and the fact that there is no scientific defense for it. Quote: "Palin didn't think Alaskans should be allowed to chase wolves from aircraft and shoot them -- they should be encouraged to do so. Palin's administration put a bounty on wolves' heads, or to be more precise, on their mitts."

It should be noted that there is a list going around the internet of specific books Palin tried to ban - that list is false. Palin never tried to ban specific books - she just asked the librarian what her response would be if she wanted to ban any books, and when the librarian showed a backbone, Palin fired her.

The site Politifact is a great resource for finding out if a candidate's statements hold up to scrutiny. Here is their Palin page.

Another great page is FactCheck.org - here are comments on the Palin speech at the RNC. The lie that made me angriest in the Palin speech was the one about "Obama has authored no major legislation." That's flat-out false, both in the Illinois legislature and the U.S. Senate.

Here's what fellow Bostonian Matt Damon thinks of her. (Or, well, Cantabrigian, at least!) Here's what Eve Ensler says. Here's what Gloria Steinem says.

On the lighter side, if you don't like Sarah Palin, there is another Palin you can vote for!

But I think the last word belongs to...well, I don't want to spoil it! Just watch - you won't regret.


  1. Also Andrew Sullivan at The Atlantic is attempting to catalogue (in Roman numerals) all the lies Sarah Palin has been pushing in her speeches. So far he is up to X. I wonder what the Latin numeral for infinity is.

  2. I think you have more than 5 readers. =)

  3. @ Renée:

    Well, actually you're right! According to my Google Analytics account, yesterday I had 25. If you add in people's blog aggregators, it might even be more than that. So maybe I am affecting the media discourse!