A reader writes:
Your post on Sarah Palin moved the ball. The issue is whether the media and the political class in the country can break through the persistent delusion of normalcy that has gripped our politics for too long. The delusion is that whatever happens is normal, simply because it happened. No historical perspective, no sense of proportion. Everything is just part of the normal give and take of politics.
It is too clever by half.
What is missing is the step of coming to judgement, drawing a conclusion, letting go of the self-willed inconclusiveness.
Actually, what was most infuriating about the election was watching people on TV pretend to not know what they knew. You could tell that numerous analysts and pundits knew that Sarah Palin was unqualified to be President, that McCain was not running a serious campaign, and that he was headed for a serious loss, yet none of that could be said aloud. It was like living in house where Daddy passed out every night, but everyone pretended that he liked to turn in early.
It is Bill Kristol's shtick: this world-weariness to outrage. Abu Ghraib was not normal; it is not normal to fabulize the case for war; it is not normal to pick a delusional know-nothing as a potential president. And it isn't sophisticated to pretend that none of this matters. It is craven.