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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sarah Palin's campaigning is infused with contagious joy

While watching Gov. Palin's televised address at a campaign rally today, I was inspired to write my mid-day guest-post at HughHewitt.com.


[Copied here for archival purposes on November 5, 2008, from the post linked above at HughHewitt.com.]

(Guest Post by Bill Dyer a/k/a Beldar)

I'm watching Sarah Palin address a campaign rally in Scranton, Pennsylvania, live on Fox News, and I can't recall ever seeing a GOP rally like this. The crowd is genuinely pumped, which is rare enough. But what's particularly amazing is watching and listening to Gov. Palin. I can't recall ever seeing a politician who so clearly relishes campaigning. She's animated and enthused. I know she's speaking from a teleprompter, and she's probably delivered large chunks of this same speech before many times, but she's tuned in on every line.

She is simply infused with joy. And it flows off the stage, and it's picked up quite powerfully by the TV cameras.

On his best occasions, Reagan had this same quality, but it was more muted, more of a twinkle from behind his carefully maintained stage presence. With Gov. Palin, it's nearly continuous and much more obvious. And I think that's a big part of why she inspires the same harsh counter-reactions from political opponents that Reagan did — the same desperate need to ridicule and belittle, to delegitimize. (You'll see it in the comments to this post within minutes after it goes up, of course.) She has to be shouted down and scorned, because if people are allowed to listen to her, that damned joy might turn out to be ... contagious!

It's a quality that was almost entirely missing from the speeches of, for example, Hillary Clinton, who turned every speech into a siege and whose grim purpose was impressive but slightly scary. Bubba, however, could work himself into joy at the drop of a hat.

Sarah Palin is just haviing a grand old time. If she's afraid of looking foolish, or of her elitist critics, or of her ticket's chances on November 4th, then she's entirely suppressed those fears. I freely admit that with me as a listener, and probably most of the folks at this rally, she's preaching to the choir. But so, too, are lots of politicians, in most of their speeches. And they just don't come across with this same zest.


UPDATE (Tue Oct 14 @ 3:40 p.m. CST): One commenter below repeats the utter lie that at a recent rally, someone from the crowd — referring to Barack Obama — shouted "Kill him!" Not even the WaPo will make that stretch, and my blogospheric friends Patterico and Mary Katherine Ham have collected the full transcript and links to original reports of the circumstances which make plain that — yes, no surprise — this is another nasty attempt by the Obama crowd to smear Gov. Palin and Sen. McCain. (The context makes absolutely clear that the shout — which no one in the McCain-Palin campaign encouraged or defends! — was directed to the would-be cop killer and unrepentant terrorist whose name had just been used, Bill Ayers.)

UPDATE (Tue Oct 14 @ 10:00 p.m. CST): I was mistaken: The commenter below was referring to a newer alleged incident, one from today which purportedly occurred before Gov. Palin took the stage. To be clear: I don't condone anyone shouting "Kill him!" about anyone. I don't blame the candidates on either ticket for the outrageous conduct of some of their supporters. I wonder whether this newest shouter was an Obama supporter. But there has been at least 10 times the venom and hate spewed from the left in the direction of Gov. Palin in particular as has ever been spewed toward Sens. Obama or Biden, and the Dems who are trying to tag the GOP candidates for responsibility on this are shamelessly off base.

UPDATE (Thu Oct 16 @ 12:15 p.m. CST): My commenter's report has been disproved by the Secret Service and other law enforcement authorities who were at the Scranton rally, as I discuss in a new post, Reports of bloodthirsty McCain-Palin supporters are mostly exaggerated or simply false.

— Beldar

Posted by Beldar at 11:14 PM in 2008 Election, Palin, Politics (2008) | Permalink


Other weblog posts, if any, whose authors have linked to Sarah Palin's campaigning is infused with contagious joy and sent a trackback ping are listed here:


(1) ketchikan made the following comment | Oct 15, 2008 3:53:08 AM | Permalink

Beldar, See HotAir Oct 13th for "Video: Tammy Bruce on the Palin T Shirts". Near the end of the video Ms Bruce mentions that when she was a Democrat they would send people into the Republican crowds to shout out things that would cause problems for the candidate.

(2) Paul_In_Houston made the following comment | Oct 15, 2008 6:58:06 AM | Permalink

My greatest hope remains with the “Silent Majority”.

It is very real, comprised of folks who abhor confrontation and arguing with loons, and are apt to respond to the left’s “get into their faces” tactic by going into the voting booth with “Vengeance is mine!” in their thoughts.

They probably don't get polled all that much as they are busy with working and LIFE (and possibly skipped for fear they might give the wrong answers).

They aren’t big on demonstrations or political stickers (I suspect the likelihood of people actually going to the polls and voting is inversely proportional to the number of stickers on their cars), but they DO go out and vote.

Obamaphiles: note how many cars are free of political stickers; and be afraid, be very afraid :-)

(3) Paul_In_Houston made the following comment | Oct 15, 2008 9:24:43 AM | Permalink

P.S. I totally believe what I said about the "Silent Majority".

I also suspect that the Bradley Effect will be in play here, because many people may have serious doubts about this guy's totally non-existent resume but choose to tell pollsters what they want to hear rather than argue about whether they are racist or not.

This could apply to exit polls as well, resulting in discouraging news when they are reported, followed by WTF? when the actual numbers come.

At least, that's my hope, and I don't think it an unreasonable one.

Don't lose heart. That's precisely what they want us to do; be so worn out and sick with despair, that we don't even go and vote election day.

I'm tempted to accommodate them this far; skip election day by early voting for McCain/Palin if I get the chance.

Think THAT will make 'em happy?:-)

Nah... Not remotely possible. Ever notice how many of his supporters go around looking as if they just swallowed something particularly nasty?

If it wasn't for who they are, I'd probably feel sorry for them; it must really suck to BE them sometimes.

(4) Gregory Koster made the following comment | Oct 15, 2008 3:57:01 PM | Permalink

Dear Mr. Dyer: I don't know that I'd call it "joy"; that's more the emotion she gets thinking about Todd or her children. "Zest" is what comes to my mind. The thwack of the club is often present around Sarah, but it isn't always the press that is landing the blows. What impresses me most is the dreadful beating she's taking, but still battling on, smiling, fulll of zest. Christopher Hichens will live to regret his judgment of her.

Sincerely yours,
Gregory Koster

(5) Dai Alanye made the following comment | Oct 15, 2008 5:00:16 PM | Permalink

With regard to the addendum, people in the heat of the moment often shout things they don't mean. Consider, "Kill him, kill the umpire," immortalized in a famous poem. Yet relatively few umpires are actually murdered, other than by their wives or homosexual lovers.

When statements such as "Off with his head!" are shouted, only someone seriously humor-deficient could take this seriously.

Note also that the vast majority of violent incidents, from attacks by seventy-year-olds to minor acts of vandalism, are Left on Right. Thus it has always been in recent decades.

(6) Loren made the following comment | Oct 16, 2008 10:48:30 AM | Permalink


You might want to update your Hugh Hewitt post and apology to VoR with this information:

(7) Beldar made the following comment | Oct 16, 2008 12:05:52 PM | Permalink

Thanks, Loren, I actually made this the subject of an entirely new post

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