Earlier this morning, Sarah Palin tweeted:
"Pennsylvania:makes sense 2 send GOP 2 DC 2 avoid PA economic disaster that will occur under Obama/Pelosi Cap & Tax scheme;workers need Raese"
And ... within an hour, this had become a news story. Palin confused Republican Senate candidate Pat Toomey with John Raese (or Pennsylvania with West Virginia). And ... within a slightly longer period of time, it had become a story about it becoming a news story. (Some liberal activists obsess over someone they consider irrelevant -- and obsess over people who cover someone they consider irrelevant.)
I think Sarah Palin made a careless error here. Our vice president, who is quite smart, has made a number of similar errors, often on the campaign trail, often in front of actual audiences. Having myself made tweet typos like that -- and worse --- it's hard to see how confusing the names of two Senate candidates qualifies as evidence for stupidity. When Palin contradicts herself or makes policy mistakes, feel free to go to town with that evidence and build her into whatever you think she is. But a typo is a typo.
Carelessness, however, is not trivial. To her supporters, Sarah Palin's to-heck-with-all-y'all style, her lack of preparation and attention to detail, her refusal to take outside advice, is refreshing. But Palin does not exist in a vacuum. She will need to better hone her skills as a retail politician if she wants to run for president. She will need to pay more attention to detail. She will need to make fewer typos. She will need to spend more time thinking about politics and policy and everything else. She will not survive a week's worth of campaigning in Iowa if she does not take politics seriously.