[NB: Quick follow-up, peeps. As far as we at C4P are concerned, anything Governor Palin, her husband or anyone else denies in Joe McGinniss' disgusting book did not happen. Do not even entertain the possibility that what that smear merchant wrote is true. The point of the article is the uncertainty that lies and gossip cause in those ignorant of who The Guv really is. We know better, and many on the far-Left should know better. It is those who are not malicious but have been brainwashed by those who wish to defame Governor Palin whom we must educate, even when it requires brutal honesty. I am sorry if there was any confusion.]
It takes a single blog post to give birth to a smear. No matter how implausible or unlikely the statement, the smear became a part of anti-Palin canon. The idea that Governor Sarah Palin would so casually and brazenly make a racially charged statement about then-Senator Barack Obama upon learning of his defeating Hillary Clinton for the Democratic Presidential nomination is absurd to those know her (undoubtedly the most absurd to her part-Yup’ik Eskimo husband, Todd), but to those who do not know her, whose views of her are blank slates fit to be moulded by her detractors, it could very well be true — or not.
Unsubstantiated gossip is the worst sort of character assassination because it can’t be proven — but neither can it be disproven. Thus, even though one can cast reasonable doubt upon it, the fact that there is merely doubt and not empirical evidence allows one’s detractors to continue to spread the lie because of the possibility of its veracity, regardless of its improbability.
Additionally, Andrew Breitbart rightly noted that “there’s nothing in this country that’s a worse accusation” than racism. “In America, if you accuse somebody of racism, that person has to disprove that.” Which, of course, Palin can’t. Because she never said that quote. No-one ever said that quote. Except for the liberal who made it up.
This is what we have in the form of Joe McGinniss’ pornographic tabloid masquerading as a book, The Rogue: Searching for the Real Sarah Palin. Rogue is basically the “Burn Book” from Mean Girls, except more poorly sourced. So trashy and so unfair is McGinniss’ opus that even The New York Times (the same Times that reported rumours about John McCain’s infidelity on the cover) and… Keith “Bathtub Boy” Olbermann sided with The Guv.
The reason I bring in the racial aspect is because of the most salient charge in the tawdry tome: the assertion that, in 1987, then-sports journalist Sarah Heath had a tryst with then-college basketball player Glen Rice, who would go on to play in the NBA. But it wasn’t just that Palin happened to have an interracial affair. The book asserts she “had a ‘fetish’ for black men at the time”, despite being involved with Todd Palin, her future husband.
The charge is incendiary, offensive and completely out of character for Governor Palin. The “evidence” is nothing more than a high-profile “he said, she said”, in this case designed to make the “she” out to be some sort of lust-crazed coke-head. (Oh, I forgot to mention, the book claims she was really into drugs, too. Again, all hearsay.)
A cursory examination of Twitter showed the immaturity of the Left’s bottom feeders, with a particular focus on the interracial aspect of the alleged incident. The tolerant progressives, always the first to cry “racism” at any perceived slight towards their supposedly colourblind, Utopian agenda, delighted in McGinniss’ interracial sexploitation of only the second woman on a major-party Presidential ticket.
Incidents such as these are why the knee-jerk labelling of racism as a “conservative” trait is fallacious. There are certainly individuals whose sympathies lie with smaller government and traditional social values who bear antipathy towards minorities. But so too are there Statists who proudly smear black conservatives using racist imagery. No matter how many examples one can cite, the Left’s narrative reigns supreme: We have a black President. He is a liberal. Racism is a conservative trait. Thus, conservatives who oppose our black President do so out of racism.
I am no Objectivist, and few of our readers are either. But Ayn Rand brilliantly eviscerated the progressive fairy tale of racist conservatism in her article, “Racism”, published in the September, 1963 issue of The Objectivist Newsletter:
Racism is the lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism. It is the notion of ascribing moral, social or political significance to a man’s genetic lineage — the notion that a man’s intellectual and characterological traits are produced and transmitted by his internal body chemistry. Which means, in practice, that a man is to be judged, not by his own character and actions, but by the characters and actions of a collective of ancestors.
Racism claims that the content of a man’s mind (not his cognitive apparatus, but its content) is inherited; that a man’s convictions, values and character are determined before he is born, by physical forces beyond his control. This is the caveman’s version of the doctrine of innate ideas — or of inherited knowledge — which has been thoroughly refuted by philosophy and science. Racism is a doctrine of, by and for brutes. It is a barnyard or stock-farm version of collectivism, appropriate to a mentality that differentiates between various breeds of anmials, but not between animals and men.
Like every form of determinism, racism invalidates the specific attribute which distinguishes man from all other living species: his rational faculty. Racism negates two aspects of man’s life: reason and choice, or mind and morality, replacing them with chemical predestination.
Just as there is no such thing as a collective or racial mind, so there is no such thing as a collective or racial achievement. There are only individual minds and individual achievements — and a culture is not the anonymous product of undifferentiated masses, but the sum of the intellectual achievements of individual men.
Even if it were proved — which it is not — that the incidence of men of potentially superior brain power is greater among the members of certain races than among the members of others, it would still tell us nothing about any given individual and it would be irrelevant to one’s judgment of him. A genius is a genius, regardless of the number of morons who belong to the same race — and a moron is a moron, regardless of the number of geniuses who share his racial origin. It is hard to say which is the more outrageous injustice: the claim of Southern racists that a Negro genius should be treated as inferior because his race has “produced” some brutes — or the claim of a German brute to the status of a superior because his race has “produced” Goethe, Schiller and Brahms.
These are not two different claims, of course, but two applications of the same basic premise. The question of whether one alleges the superiority or the inferiority of any given race is irrelevant; racism has only one psychological root: the racist’s sense of his own inferiority.
Like every other form of collectivism, racism is a quest for the unearned. It is a quest for automatic knowledge — for an automatic evaluation of men’s characters that bypasses the responsibility of exercising rational or moral judgment — and, above all, a quest for an automatic self-esteem (or pseudo-self-esteem).
This is precisely what the Left has done to Sarah Palin. In hive-mind fashion, they have applied labels to her as a matter of course. That is, they dismiss her as an idiot, as a fascist, as a religious fundamentalist, and yes, as a racist, as if her negative traits are such known quantities as to be universally accepted truths beyond dispute. This mindset allows liberals to self-inoculate themselves from the possibility that they themselves might be racist or, at least, are capable of doing racist things.
This is why l’affaire d’Rice is so revealing of progressive thinking. Because only conservatives are bigots, it is acceptable to use dog-whistle racist tactics to defame their character, and doing so in no way implicates the accuser or the spreader of gossip as a racist. It is an extension of the Left’s appeal to emotion via the ultimate hyperbole: the notion that an entire group of people are all alike, which is precisely the way racism works, as well.
I would need another post entirely to address the sexist connotations of the Rice smear. In a nutshell, the idea that what Rice is asserted to have done is something to be celebrated, at the expense of Governor Palin, using violent, anti-woman language or that Rice would have been party to some sort of sexual conquest further serve to undermine not Sarah Palin the politician but Sarah Palin the woman.
Turning a woman into a sex object dehumanises her because she becomes just that: an object. Palin goes from an accomplished leader to just another notch in some man’s bedpost, all because of a story that makes the 9/11 conspiracy theorists look credible, by comparison. This, my friends, is slut-shaming, at best, and rape culture, at worst. Joe McGinniss should be proud to have released a book that may very well set back women in politics as much as smut baron Larry Flynt’s Who’s Nailin’ Paylin? did. Bravo.
I want to close on a more up note. I had originally planned to put up a post about my trip to see Governor Palin speak in Iowa earlier this month, but an article about the event caught my eye. I found it to be somewhat relevant to the rest of this post, as it encapsulates the problem we face with a media establishment that refuses to let the facts get in the way of a perfectly good narrative.
The article appeared in National Journal. The piece discussed the coming demographic change in the United States as older, whiter generations are gradually replaced by younger, more diverse ones. It used the rally at which Palin spoke to illustrate the generational divide: “The crowd that assembled beneath a driving rain was ardent, mostly older, and virtually all-white; you could count the number of minorities on one hand.”
I call shenanigans. I was at that rally, and it was astounding just how diverse the crowd was. Despite the fact that we were in 91 percent white Iowa, I met literally dozens of people who did not fit the old, white, Christian, male or even heterosexual paradigms one incorrectly associates with conservatism.
An exchange that stuck with me was occurred when I was collecting names and information for Organize4Palin’s e-mail list from rally attendees. I spoke to a man from Mississippi named Clifton. I asked him if his family were Palinistas, too, and he said they were all Obama supporters. “I’m a lone wolf,” he joked.
I should also mention that Clifton is black, because I responded, “Oh, I was about to say, I was going to call you the black sheep, but I didn’t want to get in trouble.” And we both laughed. Because those are our priorities: We embraced our shared beliefs and ignored our different skin, except to laugh, in stark contrast those who enforce groupthink based solely upon one’s skin, where laughter is reserved for scorning one’s enemies.
Governor Palin does not have an army of paid cronies to defend her when she is smeared. She has us. We know who our true friends are when they defend us — when they fight for us. And we know when our enemies are desperate when they smear us — and we know that we are beginning to win the war.
Palinistas rock Chili’s. From left, Yours Truly, L.J., Shonté, Irish, AJ, Brian and Carlo.
Fun Fact: Forty percent of the minorities who attended the Tea Party rally are in this picture alone, according to National Journal.
C4P superstar Nicole Coulter, with her three children, Ashley (4); Devin (7); and Autumn (9), and Christian Punches, a Texan Palinista, with three of his four children, all under age 5.
Bonus Fun Fact: National Journal reported this picture as a nursing home letting its patients out on day passes.