Soeren Kern quotes some of the European commentary on Sarah Palin and concludes in the American Thinker that it ranges "from ridicule, to ridicule, to more ridicule, to reluctant acknowledgment that Barack Obama may have met his match." (HT: Marie Claude)
Donald Stadler comments on recent developments in the US presidential campaign in this guest blog post for Atlantic Review:
Every four years the people of the US descend into a period of raving lunacy rivaled only by such spectacles as Carneval in Venice, Oktoberfest in München and any presidential visit by GW Bush to Germany. Usually this commences about the beginning of October and continues until the presidential election early in November: in 2000 the period was prolonged and the lunacy deepened due to post-election events I shall not further describe. This year it would seem the season has come early. I was first alerted to this by a comment written on a blog entry on Andrew Hammel's excellent (and usually light-hearted) German Joys blog.
Hammel comments humorously about the name of Nancy Pfotenhauer, a spokesperson for GOP Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin, (pronounced "Hassenpfeffer"). Other posts replied in kind but yesterday the Lunacy Squad struck. A never before seen poster named 'Jim' posted a huge stream of conciousness attack upon 'Hassenpfeffer' (or whatever her name is) a la James Joyce, apparently somehow concerning a comment which Barack Obama made recently about putting lipstick on a pig.
I looked into the 'lipstick' issue in greater depth as there appears to be some confusion. Obama was alleged to have compared Sarah Palin to a pig, but after viewing the video I believe he may have been alluding to his opinion that nominating McCain and Palin was putting lipstick on the 'pig' named the GOP. Perhaps slightly offensive but not personally so. The Democrats are making an enormous fuss about an ad the McCain campaign ran about the comment. Unfortunately YouTube has removed the video of the McCain ad so I cannot comment about that part of it. Perhaps someone who has seen it could kindly do so?
Some comments here. What had been a reasonably couth campaign season began it's descent into gibbering madness with the shock announcement by McCain that Alaska Governor Sarah Palin would be his choice for Vice President on the GOP ticket. As this occurred over a weekend the initial reaction was therefore from the blogosphere ('Daily Kos' & company) and 4th-rate weekend 'journalists' and was predictably unfortunate. These people tend to lack - subtlety. And balance. Judgement. Sarah Palin & her family were rather outrageously lampooned about private matters, and Palin used her nominating speech to open up a little on Senator Obama - not without wit and subtlety. McCain has acquired a 'bounce' and is now in the lead in some national polls, although state polling data does not reflect a McCain jump currently.
The past 10 days have been surreal, but in an unfamiliar way. Obama has been impressive in this period. He has kept his cool and appears to be trying to steer the campaign back to calm. Unfortunately he's been drowned out by many of his most fervent partisans who have doubled and redoubled their angry attacks on McCain and Palin. Right now it's a food fight, and the 'voice of reason' tends not to be heard during food fights.
McCain has mostly kept his cool but not as well as Obama I think. Palin is deliberately egging things on to a degree, but this is a tactic not hotheadedness.
The Democrats need to calm down, and quickly. Their best asset is the candidate himself. Right now everyone is being covered with cream pies & Obama has been drowned out. Pie fights cover everyone with lemon merangue, and people dripping with merangue all look the same. Differences are the Democrat's friend this year, so it's best they stop tossing pies and clean up their mess.
Chaos is McCain's biggest friend this year, so don't expect him and Palin to use the same playbook. Nevertheless if Democrats take control of their own actions and behavior I think McCain will be compelled to follow suite to avoid appearing petty, vindictive, and childish.
One more thing; I think the tables may have been turned. In 2004 Kerry lost his head when the Swift Boats campaign began. We were hearing a lot of whimpering about unfairness from Democrats. This year it's the McCain camp playing the unfairness card. Obama is keeping his head and has not been attacking Palin unfairly. If the Kerry loss of control was a leading indicator of his loss in 2004, possibly the McCain response to the Palin attack may be a similar sign of weakness. One thing I hope EVERYONE has learned from 2004 is that it's a VERY BAD idea to make attacks based upon forged 'evidence'. The National Guard memo 'scandal' may have cost Kerry the election even though there exits no proof his campaign had nothing to do with the memos.