by Brad Nelson 1/20/16
Sarah Palin has endorsed Donald Trump for the Republican presidential nomination. A fairly thoughtful opinion on this event was written by Emily Zanotti at The American Spectator. Emily writes:
With her endorsement of Donald Trump, Sarah Palin has done a complete 180 from her down-home conservative roots, embracing Trump’s populist, hardly conservative campaign with fervor, proving that she — despite what she’s said over and over for the last decade — is more about defeating an “Establishment” boogeyman than she is following through on the limited government, pro-life, free market world she envisioned in her first speech to a raucous Republican National Convention.
She also opines:
And now, Republicans are paying the ultimate price for turning their leaders into their entertainers.
I don’t disagree with any of that. It must be said. This is a shattering disappointment to Palin fans. If ever there was a Tea Party-like Constitutionalist on the menu it is Ted Cruz, not Donald Trump. If ever there was a place to make a stand on ideals, not celebrity, it is with Ted Cruz, not Donald Trump.
So don’t suppose my disappointment is not deep although my surprise is small. I like Sarah Palin. And I don’t dislike Donald Trump. But politics has more and more become not “the art of the possible” but “the stage of the celebrity.” I don’t blame Palin for likely making a cabinet-level deal with Trump in return for her endorsement. She is probably going with a winner and regains some relevancy for herself. The book sales and lecture circuit can go on, now reinvigorated. The commodity for sale, as always, is celebrity, and Trump has that in spades.
I’ve run out of tears for the fiddling our culture is doing while Rome burns. But do understand I always have that as a backdrop. And although immigration is a key issue, in a reasonably sane world, Ted Cruz would be endorsed by the likes of Palin who claims to be a straight-talking, reformist type of person.
Say what you will about Trump, but he has no track record in regards to being a limited government conservative. But because politics has so clearly been enmeshed in pop culture, the endorsement by Palin comes as no surprise. It’s a good move for her even if the verdict is out on what good or ill a Trump presidency would be over a Cruz presidency.
So I haven’t come to bury Palin but to praise her. She has made a smart move. The price she will pay for this is being regarded as a principled person by those for whom political and moral principles still hold sway. She at least has not sold out to the establishment. In fact, there is some glee to be garnered from this endorsement for she will have dealt a fatal blow to Rich Lowry’s emasculation fantasies regarding Trump.
But it is arguable that she has sold out to something. There will be a great deal of nostril-holding this election cycle. We will squint and believe as best we can that Palin knows what she’s doing, that Trump will at least remain good on his promises regarding immigration, and that the cheap property being offered for sale in Florida is indeed not located on swamp land.
Brad is editor and chief disorganizer of StubbornThings.
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