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Monday, July 6, 2009

Magical Thinking

Sarah Palin's attorney, Thomas Van Flein just spoke with Andrea Mitchell on MSNBC. Mitchell asked him if Palin was upset that critics called her speech "rambling." " Well, I don't think she's upset. What I think is, she sees it as the standard criticism that she receives....She's actually very articulate."

Why do these people think that they can make something be true just by saying it? Saying that Sarah Palin is articulate is like saying that she's male, or black, or not a vapid, publicity-hungry baby factory.

Why do you think that that's the "standard criticism?" Do you think that people listen to her prattle and think "wow, she's really articulate. I guess I'll say the exact opposite when asked for comment?" Take a look at this:

Our destiny to be reached by responsibly developing our natural resources. This land, blessed with clean air, water, wildlife, minerals, and oil and gas. It's energy!
God gave us energy.

Does that sound like something an articulate woman would say? It's incoherent. There's barely a complete sentence in there. And this is from the transcript on the Alaska State Government website. So is this:

We took government out of the dairy business and put it back into private-sector hands – where it should be.

See, anyone with a basic grasp of English syntax can see that here she is claiming to have put government into private hands.

Um, by the way, sure wish folks could ever, ever understand that we all could learn so much from someone like Trig - I know he needs me, but I need him even more... what a child can offer to set priorities right – that time is precious... the world needs more "Trigs", not fewer.

That's pretty much gibberish. And by the way, Ms Palin may be the only one who can "learn so much" from an infant.

. . . we can ALL learn from our selfless Troops… they’re bold, they don’t give up,

That's an ironic reference, since the theme of the speech was "I quit!"

So, articulate? Not so much. Simply saying that she is doesn't change anything. This is a sort of magical thinking, believing that saying something as if it were true somehow makes it more true. It's how you get people saying things like "we'll be greeted as liberators" and believing it. Or "Sarah Palin is qualified to be president."

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