I know that Sarah Palin (R-AK-half-term) tends to like saying things she knows will piss off people who think rationally (or at all), so that they’ll express their indignation and she can fundraise off of it. On the other hand, since this is pretty much all she seems to say it’s reasonable to accept that much of the time she actually means what escapes from her. Still, whatever it is that spills forth from her lips, for those of us who write for a living, she’s a Godsend.
Take the other day when she bizarrely criticized the Pope for seeming to often be too liberal, and then even more bizarrely came back a few days later to apologize.
"He's had some statements that to me sound kind of liberal, has taken me aback, has kind of surprised me," the former half-term governor told Jake Tapper of CNN.
No doubt she was referring to those liberal things like brotherhood and helping the needy and one’s fellow man, things that the pesky Pope probably thought he got from, well, y’know, the Bible and the teachings of Jesus. Maybe she meant his thoughts of acceptance to human beings who were gay. Or that blind ideology, based on ideology alone and not the teachings of Jesus, was a sickness.
She did hedge her bets though, adding, “Unless I really dig deep into what his messaging is, and do my own homework, I’m not going to just trust what I hear in the media.”
Okay, in fairness to Ms. Palin, when you hear stuff like that, you just know she’s lost and grasping for Regis Philbin so that she can call for a Lifeline and get help. I mean, seriously, who talks like that? God love her. Wanting to dig deep into what the Pope’s “messaging” is. (Mind you, I don’t think Sarah Palin has dug deep into anything her whole life, unless it’s that pile of waste she regularly emits.) To be clear, I’m not quite sure she didn’t do her own homework before criticizing the Pope – nor am I sure why any of us, following Ms. Palin’s own standards, should trust what we hear her say in the media. Unless we dig deep through the muck, that is.
But that brings us to her apology. Which came about, I have to presume, because someone on her staff likely said it wasn’t really a good idea to outrage her base by criticizing the infallible Pope.
"It was not my intention to be critical of Pope Francis," she wrote on the protective safety of Facebook. "I was reminding viewers that we need to do our own homework on news subjects, and I hadn't done mine yet on the Pope's recent comments as reported by the media."
Well, sure, of course, it was very specifically her intention to be critical of the Pope. That’s what “He's had some statements that to me sound kind of liberal, has taken me aback, has kind of surprised me" is.
And no, she wasn’t reminding viewers that we need to do our homework. She said that she hadn’t done her homework. (Most likely carrying on a personal tradition since the third grade.) Which she said after having criticized the Pope.
It’s worth noting, too, that nowhere does she explain what the media supposedly got “wrong,” all the more inexplicable considering that the Pope’s statements were there for all the world to see on that new invention called video. Nor does she explain what Pope Francis said that was “kind of liberal,” nor what now on second thought to herself isn’t liberal at all.
All we know is that God love Sarah Palin for apologizing and in the same breath blaming others for it. That is a masterful skill of avoiding personal responsibility.
“I apologize for not being clearer in my response,” she wrote, “thus opening the door to critical media that does what it does best in ginning up controversy.”
So, as you can see, Sarah Palin really isn’t apologizing for criticizing the Pope, but rather this poor excuse for a whiner and professional victim is merely sorry for not being clear in how she criticized the Pope.
Note to people who go on TV to be interviewed:
When you do criticize anyone, like the Pope the media will report it. Most especially when you actually courted the media and chose to go on it. In fact, you’ve made their job really, really easy because no one has to even report or “gin up controversy” at all, that’s because – if you’re on television and talking -- the moments words leave your mouth, people can actually hear them!
But honestly, all that’s secondary. Because I have a feeling that if her initial comments ever did get to Pope Francis, and he was told that some person who once lost in her run for Vice President of the United States and quit halfway through her term as governor of Alaska had said of him, “He's had some statements that to me sound kind of liberal,” the Pontiff probably would have responded – “Well, yes, my child they were indeed kind of liberal. So was Our Savior, you know. You should read the Bible. And understand it.”
And further, as I wrote here recently (and included video of the People actually speaking, because I do dig deep and do my homework), he may well have added, too, that “When I said the other week that there is a problem with people who only speak in ideological terms, that it is a sickness, and said that – and let me quote myself – ‘The faith becomes ideology and ideology frightens, ideology chases away the people, distances, distances the people and distances of the Church of the people. But it is a serious illness, this of ideological Christians. It is an illness, but it is not new, eh?’ – when I said that, I was speaking precisely about people exactly like…you.”
God love Sarah Palin. What a professional yammerer. But sometimes, all that some people just need is a hug. And a nap. And an exorcism.
But not to worry, I am sure that Sarah Palin will use this all and do some fundraising. No doubt that it will show she had a good haul and made at least 30 pieces of silver out of it all.
Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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