Friday, September 12, 2008

A Gauntlet: Can Anyone Argue Fallows' Point?

I've loved reading the Atlantic Monthly for nearly 30 years, largely because of James Fallows. He writes succinctly and with facility as an American with an international point of view. In his most recent column he uses Republican Vice Presidential Candidate Sarah Palin's response to a question about the Bush Doctrine as further proof of her utter unsuitability for the job McCain has assigned her. He also speaks pointedly to the judgment of anyone who would put her in such a position.
Fallows' overarching point is that Palin simply hasn't been interested in foreign policy:
What Sarah Palin revealed is that she has not been interested enough in world affairs to become minimally conversant with the issues. Many people in our great land might have difficulty defining the "Bush Doctrine" exactly. But not to recognize the name, as obviously was the case for Palin, indicates not a failure of last-minute cramming but a lack of attention to any foreign-policy discussion whatsoever in the last seven years.



The most compelling thing here is that Fallows isn't attacking her intelligence, competence, patriotism or enthusiasm for the job. He's stating the obvious. Anyone who has paid any attention to foreign affairs for the last seven years would have been able to identify, if not aptly define, the Bush Doctrine. Palin's blank look and defensiveness, particularly her apparent wish to make Gibson into the bad guy, tell everything necessary.

And the rush of words, oy, she's like one of my high school juniors (not the AP group) answering an essay question on a story she never even heard of let alone read.

1 comment:

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