Not the Moms and Dads themselves, just the actual words. So says Peggy Noonan:
More than ever on the campaign trail, the candidates are dropping their G's. Hardworkin' families are strainin' and tryin'a get ahead. It's not only Sarah Palin but Mr. McCain, too, occasionally Mr. Obama, and, of course, George W. Bush when he darts out like the bird in a cuckoo clock to tell us we are in crisis. All of the candidates say "mom and dad": "our moms and dads who are struggling." This is Mr. Bush's former communications adviser Karen Hughes's contribution to our democratic life, that you cannot speak like an adult in politics now, that's too austere and detached, snobby. No one can say mothers and fathers, it's all now the faux down-home, patronizing—and infantilizing—moms and dads. Do politicians ever remember that in a nation obsessed with politics, our children—sorry, our kids—look to political figures for a model as to how adults sound?
Oh dear. We are raising a generation of un-austere kids. Next thing you know a bunch of hicks will be running the country. Noonan has fallen in with the pretty words crowd. How one speaks is more important than what one says. She joins Christopher Buckley, who has decided to support Havard Man Barack Obama because he wrote a pretty book:
I’ve read Obama’s books, and they are first-rate. He is that rara avis, the politician who writes his own books. Imagine...
Imagine!!!! Rara avis!!!
That's not to say Noonan is voting for Obama, as far as I know she hasn't made that leap - yet - but her condescending obsession with Sarah Palin's manner of speech puts her squarely in the camp of conservative elitists who just can't stand the thought of someone outside their little circle of rare birds in the White House. No room in there for common folks.
Her catty column sounds more like a jealous hissy fit than a reasoned "intellectual" discussion. She claims she has listened to Sarah Palin for seven weeks and still can't figure out what she stands for. Maybe Noonan has a comprehension problem. I guess they didn't teach comprehension skills at Fairleigh Dickinson. Lucianne poster Lady Vet offered to help her out:
Let's help Peggy out. Palin is for: killing taxes, saving babies, saving jobs, winning in Iraq, winning in Afghanistan, energy independence, drilling in ANWAR, protecting the 2nd Amendment. This ain't hard, Peggy.
Noonan's quandary? Is Palin a Bushian or Reaganite?
But we have seen Mrs. Palin on the national stage for seven weeks now, and there is little sign that she has the tools, the equipment, the knowledge or the philosophical grounding one hopes for, and expects, in a holder of high office. She is a person of great ambition, but the question remains: What is the purpose of the ambition? She wants to rise, but what for? For seven weeks I've listened to her, trying to understand if she is Bushian or Reaganite—a spender, to speak briefly, whose political decisions seem untethered to a political philosophy, and whose foreign policy is shaped by a certain emotionalism, or a conservative whose principles are rooted in philosophy, and whose foreign policy leans more toward what might be called romantic realism, and that is speak truth, know America, be America, move diplomatically, respect public opinion, and move within an awareness and appreciation of reality.
But it's unclear whether she is Bushian or Reaganite. She doesn't think aloud. She just . . . says things.
She doesn't think aloud? She just...says things? I don't know what in the heck that means but it sounds really profound.
Maybe this is what Peggy means by thinking aloud:
In the end the Palin candidacy is a symptom and expression of a new vulgarization in American politics. It's no good, not for conservatism and not for the country. And yes, it is a mark against John McCain, against his judgment and idealism.
And there you have it. How dare Sarah Palin, who didn't go to Harvard, hasn't written a book, says infantilizing things like "Moms and Dads", run for Vice President of the United State? Get Back Sarah. Get back to where you once belonged.
Oh, and as for vulgar, How about this Peggy:
Mike Murphy: It’s not going to work…Still McCain can give a version of the Lieberman speech and do himself some good.
Peggy Noonan: It’s over.
Chuck Todd: Don’t you think this pick is insulting to Kay Bailey Hutchison?
Noonan: I saw Kay this morning.
Todd: Yeah, she has never looked comfortable.
Murphy: They are all bummed out about this.
Todd: I mean is she really the most qualified woman they could have picked?
Noonan: No, I think they went for this, excuse me, political bullshit about narratives. Every time Republicans do that… they blow it.”
You stay classy, Peggy. At least you didn't drop your "Gs".