by Dave Weigel

The heart-achingly moronic "spat" between Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney tells us how. The rundown, if you can stand it:

THURSDAY: Anonymous aides to Mitt Romney tell Mark Halperin that Palin is "not a serious human being" and will be in trouble in a debate where the "answers are more than 15 seconds long."

FRIDAY, 6:47 a.m.: Politico's Andy Barr publishes comments from "a longtime Palin aide," who gets eight paragraphs to unload on Romney and pump up his/her boss: "She’s not a finger-in-the-wind kind of leader."

FRIDAY, 10-something a.m.: Romney's Twitter account (written by him? written by someone else?) friendly-fires on the first aides as "anonymous numbskulls."

How many people were directly quoted in this spat? None, unless you count the Romney Twitter account. Andy Bar hustled in getting those quotes from Mysterious Palin Aide of the Deep, but his talent is wasted when he plays kid who whispers the gossip about the popular kids to the less popular kids. It's stuff like this that informs my dark, dark suspicion that 2012 will be more about nonsense than policy, and that people who think Palin needs to bone up on policy don't get this.