One fun side-effect of digging around for stuff about just how bad the oncoming global collapse is, is that you get to read a lot of amusing stuff about Sarah Palin.
Here's a Telegraph report that John McCain has argued people are underestimating Sarah Palin like Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan - both of whom went on to serve two terms.
I guess you could compare her with Clinton in that both have been governors of fairly small (population-wise), perhaps even inconsequential, states beginning with 'A' (Alaska and Arkansas respectively.) But Clinton was certainly no fool either in interview or debate.
I mean, can anyone imagine Bill Clinton (or Hillary Clinton for that matter) delivering a performance like this in a TV interview. The link is to Palin's performance in an interview on the CBS network and it's unbelievably, laughably, shit. If this had cropped up on Brass Eye it would have fitted in very nicely. (It would explain a lot if Chris Morris turns out to be the Republican campaign manager...)
The Reagan comparison has a bit more merit to it. The guy was a cheap punk who was refused membership of the US Communist party in the 1940s for being too stupid, and who enjoyed high-quality policy advice from his astrologer (call David Icke NOW!!!). But undeniably he was (sometimes) good on TV and had a certain knack for nailing a catchphrase which resonated with the US electorate; one can perhaps imagine Palin being able to do that if circumstances were right (i.e. probably not in the middle of the biggest economic crisis for 70 years).
The fantastic parody cartoon from The Onion of the Carter-Reagan contest in 1980 sums up Ronnie's appeal; Carter saying "let's talk better mileage", and Reagan saying "kill the bastards". That sums it up; a cold-blooded, simple, fascistic message that many of the voters could identify with. In the right circumstances I believe Palin could do that. But these ain't the right circumstances. At best she will manage one or two killer one-liners. Now if Joe Biden is completely shit that could be enough; but I don't believe he is that shit. At the very least, he showed considerable good taste by stealing Neil Kinnock's speech on being the first of his family in a thousand generations to go to university... etc.
I think a more appropriate comparator for Palin is Dan Quayle, widely acknowledged to be the most crap Vice-Presidential choice of the last half-century or so. But don't forget that Quayle was seen as a real turkey well before the '88 election and it didn't stop George Bush snr. winning by a landslide. I think the V-P debate is kind of irrelevant, except for the fact that McCain is not a man with a good record of health, and he is 72 years old. So the question of the fitness for duty of the V-P may weigh more heavily in this case. But in any case, it's fun to blog about.