During the last eleven days, speculation about the emergence and path of Hurricane Sarah has grabbed everyone`s attention, not because of her policies, the ones she admits to having, they seem fairly conventional, right-of-center GOP boilerplate, but because of her personality.
Sarah Palin isn't 'a shrinking violet', never has been. There seems precious little introspection. She is a woman of action, not of thought or forbearance. Bush was like that, remember. This will likely be her undoing. Unfortunately, she is thin-skinned and appears to hold grudges. Nietzche's point that the singular quality of a superman (or superwoman), that they must overcome vengeance is not applicable to her. It is not part of her make-up.
Her legacy in Wasilla, inspite of her popularity, included a high municipal debt and long list of personal enemies.
Yes, she is riding a crest in Alaska now, for the same reason that Putin or Chavez are popular -petrodollars are pouring into her jurisdiction, but nationally, with America in a shaky economy, with a balloning national debt ..welL, you know the list. I think her fifteen minutes of fame will not last the bitter reality, that the Republican administration has only deepened and engulfed us.
In the meantime, the most insightful blog/ commentary I have read about Sarah Palin comes from someone who knows her well, Anne Kilkenny.
I am a resident of Wasilla, Alaska. I have known Sarah since 1992. Everyone here knows Sarah, so it is nothing special to say we are on a first-name basis. Our children have attended the same schools. Her father was my child's favorite substitute teacher. I also am on a first name basis with her parents and mother-in-law. I attended more City Council meetings during her administration than about 99% of the residents of the city.
She is savvy. She doesn't take positions; she just "puts things out there" and if they prove to be popular, then she takes credit.
Sarah campaigned in Wasilla as a "fiscal conservative".(don't they all). She reduced progressive property taxes and increased a regressive sales tax which taxed even food. The tax cuts that she promoted benefited large corporate property owners way more than they benefited residents.
She inherited a city with zero debt, but left it with indebtedness of over $22 million...
She's not very tolerant of divergent opinions or open to outside ideas or compromise. As Mayor, she fought ideas that weren't generated by her or her staff. Ideas weren't evaluated on their merits, but on the basis of who proposed them...
Sarah complained about the "old boy's club" when she first ran for Mayor, so what did she bring Wasilla? A new set of "old boys". Palin fired most of the experienced staff she inherited. At the city and as Governor she hired or elevated new, inexperienced, obscure people, creating a staff totally dependent on her for their jobs and eternally grateful and fiercely loyal-loyal to the point of abusing their power to further her personal agenda...
Around Wasilla there are people who went to high school with Sarah. They call her "Sarah Barracuda" because of her unbridled ambition and predatory ruthlessness.
Note: Wizbang Blue is now closed and our authors have moved on. Paul Hooson can now be found at Wizbang Pop!. Please come see him there!