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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Maligned? No, Palined.

It has been a less than stellar week for Sarah Palin. Last Friday, Peggy Noonan insinuated that she was a nincompoop, and chastised her characterization of Reagan as “just an actor.” It goes without saying that Noonan, a cherished vestige of the Reagan Administration, wields a tremendous amount of power with her WSJ editorials. One can only imagine the embarrassment Palin's camp procured.

Drudge is reporting that Rep. Spencer Bacchus (R-AL) claims “[the] Senate would be Republican today except for states (in which Palin endorsed candidates) like Christine O’Donnell in Delaware, … Sarah Palin cost us control of the Senate.” I doubt this, but it truly doesn't help the case for Palin that someone would be so outspoken in what is supposed to be a part of the country most amiable to her presence.

The most embarrassing face-off occurred yesterday. Sudeep Reddy of the WSJ condemned Sarah Palin's inaccurate remarks in response to QE2. Palin had said “everyone who ever goes out shopping for groceries knows that prices have risen significantly over the past year or so. Pump priming would push them even higher.” Subsequently, she defended her remarks on her Facebook page, citing one of Reddy's articles from November 4, 2010: “The article noted that “an inflationary tide is beginning to ripple through America’s supermarkets and restaurants…Prices of staples including milk, beef, coffee, cocoa and sugar have risen sharply in recent months.”

But, as Reddy responded, “The Nov. 4 Wall Street Journal article noted, in its first sentence, 'the tamest year of food pricing in nearly two decades.' It does indeed report that supermarkets and restaurants are facing cost pressures that could push their retail prices higher — but it hasn’t happened yet on a large scale. Critics of the Fed’s quantitative easing policy are focused primarily on concerns about potential future inflation.” Oops!

Palin brands herself as a fiscal conservative voice, though her misquote, and subsequent retort, can only lead one to question her understanding of the economy. This snafu is only conflated by her seemingly-superficial understanding of the political system. I'm not particularly anti-Palin, but this certainly doesn't warrant any respect on my end.

Update (and/or clarification):

Palin wrote "The [November 4] article noted that “an inflationary tide is beginning to ripple through America’s supermarkets and restaurants…Prices of staples including milk, beef, coffee, cocoa and sugar have risen sharply in recent months.” What that WSJ article said is that food prices may be beginning to rise She selectively quoted a line that actually reads "An inflationary tide is beginning to ripple through America’s supermarkets and restaurants,threatening to end the tamest year of food pricing in nearly two decades."

Palin criticized Reddy for pointing out that she’s wrong about grocery prices going up significantly in the past year by quoting a separate story that confirms what Reddy is saying—and cuts out that part with three dots. QE2 is a bad call, I agree. Nobody is refuting that. Palin just shouldn't have misquoted. It doesn't help her PR --- hence I mentioned it in an article about the bad PR she has experienced this past week. I just think she should have exerted more tact.


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  1. "Noonan, a cherished vestige of the Reagan Administration, wields a tremendous amount of power"

    You're kidding, right? This is meant ironically, right?

    As for the inflation argument -- you missed the story about food prices going up over 10% in Palin's market?

  2. The charge of superficiality can cut both ways. First, the article cited by Palin (http://is.gd/gUjw3 ) was written by Julie Jargon And Ilan Brat, not by Mr. Reddy. Second, the first two paragraphs read:

    "An inflationary tide is beginning to ripple through America's supermarkets and restaurants, threatening to end the tamest year of food pricing in nearly two decades.

    Prices of staples including milk, beef, coffee, cocoa and sugar have risen sharply in recent months. And food makers and retailers including McDonald's Corp., Kellogg Co. and Kroger Co. have begun to signal that they'll try to make consumers shoulder more of the higher costs for ingredients."

    Because of the word "beginning" in the opening sentence Reddy cites in his defense, he has a thin claim to being technically right. But the broad meaning of the passage supports Mrs. Palin.

    As for Bacchus' claim that Palin cost the Republicans the Senate, that's nonsense. The Republican voters of Delaware chose O'Donnell, whom Palin endorsed only after the primary. Ken Buck in Colorado lost arguably because he ran a campaign that made several missteps, as well his opposition to online poker playing, which cost him among libertarian-minded voters. Like O'Donnell, Angle was endorsed by Palin only after her nomination. Again, she ran a weak campaign during the summer that allowed her to be painted as a wacko by Reid, something she never overcame. The margin of her defeat and the size by which she lost key demographic groups cannot be accounted for by a "Palin drag." For Bacchus to say she cost them the Senate is bad analysis at best.

    More likely, in at least Buck's case and Rossi's likely loss in Washington, is the waste of $8 million by the NRSC in California, a race in which Fiorina was never close.

    Rather than being someone with a "seeming superficial understanding of the political system," her 32-17-5 record ( http://is.gd/gUlBi )of endorsements this cycle speaks of someone with a pretty good political eye.

  3. 1. Palin's endorsement did not cost us Delaware. The GOP's perverse rejection of the voter's clear choice for their party is to blame there. Plain and simple.

    2. I don't need the WSJ to tell me what I can see with my own eyes and feel with my wallet. Anyone who shops for groceries knows the score. Moreover, the complete quote from the cited WSJ article actually says more than you allude: "The article noted that “an inflationary tide is beginning to ripple through America’s supermarkets and restaurants…Prices of staples including milk, beef, coffee, cocoa and sugar have risen sharply in recent months.”"

    3. The WSJ editorial board agrees with Palin's analysis.

    4. Peggy Noonan's wordcraft is without peer. However, her ginned-up umbrage at Sarah Palin using Reagan's (much-maligned by the Left, btw) acting creds as a parallel to her own involvement in the modern medium of entertainment is laughable. Noonan extrapolates that into a broader misrepresentation of Reagan's abilities and esteem in Palin's eyes. Reagan was heralded as a master of the media and if Palin wishes to compare her involvement in modern media to the "just actor" part of Reagan, I think she has ground. It's disingenuous for Noonan to put that forth as the complete volume of thought that Palin might wish to articulate about Reagan.

  4. I agree. This is the only site to the right of the mainstream media that I have seen denying the inflation to come.

    It is also interesting that a person who has been governor of a state, earning 80% approval, would be dismissed as not knowing about government.

  5. The Friday editorial page in the WSJ? Yes, I am serious.

    What "Palin's market" are you referring to?

  6. Well, that didn't take long. The "obligatory bash Palin" post has been accomplished. Perhaps you missed the OTHER editorial at WSJ about Palin.

    "Palin's Dollar, Zoellick's Gold
    An unlikely pair elevate the monetary policy debate." 9 Nov 2010

    Why do women "feel" the need to bash other conservative women? You are providing fodder for the progressives. We do NOT eat our own. It has now become "less than a stellar week" for Legal Insurrection. Truly disappointing.

  7. Have any of these people been inside of a supermarket lately?
    I'll offer 1 example Clorox Bleach. 3 months ago $1.85 at the closest supermarket. Last week $2.50.

    This article looks like a pure hit piece on Palin as was the Spencer Bacchus attack. I don't see an reason for this. There are plenty of leftists tearing down this country 24/7, Attack them.

  8. In all honesty, I'd trade every Bacchus, Noonan, et al, establishment types we've got for a couple more Sarah Palins. I'm not a Palin diehard by any means, but I'm so utterly fed up with the "we know better" elites in our party, I'm for running them all out of town on a rail.

    These are the same guys who swore up and down that Bob Dole was the man we needed to nominate in '96. That John McCain was the only republican who could win in '08. That cautioned in '09 that Reaganism was dead, and only a move to the middle could save the party. That were (and still are) embarrassed by the TEA Parties. Some of them (looking at you Peggy) more or less went over to Team-O in '08.

    The self-appointed smart kids have told us for decades that if we let them run the show, things will be just fine. Well, the economy is in shambles, our courts and laws have become sad jokes, entitlement spending is set to enslave our great-great grandchildren in debt, and the country owes amounts of money that literally exceeds what most non-theoretical mathematicians can even conceptualize.

    I say we give the smart kids a well deserved break and see what the dumb chicks from Alaska, Minnesota, and South Dakota can do.*

    *Rhetorical, I don't think there's anything dumb about them.

  9. Ms. McCaffrey -- Perhaps you should peruse this article to procure your embarrassment. http://www.inflation.us/sarahpalin.html

    Your Palin Derangment Syndrome is showing. Too bad, I really enjoyed Legal Insurrection. Not so much with you as a contributor.

  10. Oops, this was supposed to be part of that last comment.

    As a lawyer, I guess I at least tangentially fall into the "credentialed elite" Glenn Reynolds has been talking about for a while now, though I'll confess to never really being comfortable in such company. Still, I'm inclined to think that what this country needs right now is a heaping dose of back-to-the-basics Jacksonianism. My profound hope is that Sarah Palin (with all her admitted flaws), Glenn Beck (his, too), and the TEA Party crowd will be just that.

  11. The other side of the attack Palin any time, any issue leftist BS.


    "In assailing their debunked perception of Palin’s ignorance Dickerson and Reddy showed their own."

    God Bless Sarah Palin!

  12. Ms. McCaffrey, I would strongly advise you to learn more about how the federal government has changed its reporting of inflation data in recent years, in order to mask the real inflation rate. (One excellent, highly regarded source is econometrician John Williams' site).

    Through the magic of "hedonics" (if you don't know what that is, you should) and the fact that the Fed is no longer reporting the M3 money supply data, the real inflation rate has been disguised in order to keep Social Security payments low. This isn't tin-foil conspiracy stuff- it's a fact. Despite the fact that the government continues to report supposedly low inflation rates, the rates are not reflected in many prices affecting consumers.

    You really don't want to dispute the fact that grocery prices and gas prices (and the like) have been continuing to rise as federal deficits (under both Bush and Obama) have soared, right?

  13. Quite frankly, I believe you, Ms. MCaffrey, are showing yourself as a typical pseudo-Conservative. Read the article Gov. Palin quoted and referred to in her reply, and others; see references here:
    and here:
    and here:
    and here:
    and here:

    Mr. Reddy was "pwned" - without question (see here, too: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703514904575602231815453378.html?mod=WSJ_hps_sections_opinion#printMode). His empty and weak rebuttal was a FAIL; Palin was right, and did not "Oops!" as you so eloquently opine.

    Virtually anyone who understands economics knows that this QE2 will cause even higher inflation (can you say Milton Friedman?); unless, of course, you are a Keynesian Socialist economics fan, of course.

    Do you, by chance, read Conservatives4Palin blog? Or Hot Air? Lots of bias there at C4P, without question; however, they are 100% on the money when they took down Noonan, Reddy (see this reference, please:

    Thank you for revealing yourself to us so quickly. Perhaps you are attempting to be the Allahpundit of Legal Insurrection? Hmmmmmm. No, thank you.

  14. The problem with Sarah's WSJ quote was not whether she was right or wrong about inflation. It was that she deliberately misquoted an article to show that even Sudeep Reddy's paper disagreed with him.

    There is enough data out there for her to use to prove her point. Now she gave her haters extra ammunition.

  15. If government weatherman tell me its not raining, but I see it raining outside, I'm going to take the umbrella.

    No inflation? Where you been living

  16. So long, Legal Insurrection. Now that you have a Noonan/Parker clone, I'm out. It's been fun.

  17. @Ber - I see trolls. Heh heh heh. Read my links. Read Sarah Palin's FB page. Heh heh heh. FAIL.

    And @Cowboy - this is the new blog commenter in town. She needs to know that you can't pull the wool over the eyes of Prof. Jacobson's readers. She may be selling, but we're not buying.

  18. Professor, You may not go to the market that often so I bring to you -- http://www.aldenteblog.com/2010/11/bacon-math.html.

    The fact is Palin called it correctly.

    As to whether Palin cost the Conservative cause the Senate, I would say, He who has not sin cast the first stone. It seems rather odd that little mention is made that the statewide GOP withheld their resources from O'Donnell which probably hurt worse than any pontifications from Palin.

  19. Peggy Noonan is a fossil and a total symbol of the ossified thinking of the establishment GOP. Were it not for Sarah Palin, we would not control the House. Were it not for Sarah Palin, the American public would still be asleep as that p.o.s. in the White House continued the Balkanization of our once-proud nation.

    And from my standpoint, prices have been going up.

  20. If anyone wants to do some good posting on a conservative site, I would recommend posting articles documenting the harm that will be done to the Republican Party if Spencer Bacchus is elevated to a position of responsibility in the Financial services committee.


  21. The last person I want to from about what is good for Republicans is some establishment guy.
    Tea Partiers put them back in the driver's seat and Bachus wants to complain that the gains were enough for him....?
    Let's go back to 2006 and 2008 and see what their record was.

  22. Thanks Dino. I am a long time follower of this blog because I really enjoy professor Jacobson's viewpoint and the way he presents it.

    I have no opinion yet about Kathleen, I may disagree with her conclusions here but that doesn't automatically make her a liberal sellout like some people here seem to think. Some of the comments on this post have been the kind of comments that conservatives attribute to liberals.

    I actually am a fan of Sarah Palin and I have no problem with the substance of her statements. I did read her FB rebuttal when it was published and I just think it was a mistake to go for the personal attack like that, especially because it was so easy to make it look like she was misquoting. If that makes me a troll, so be it. I think you need to calm down a little though.

  23. Two things:

    First, Sarah Palin did not cause Republicans to "loose" the Senate. The millstone of a fossilized old-guard establishment and the reputation they earned a few years ago did that. Quotes to numerous to mention show that the Republican Party did not expect to win control of the Senate, nor did they work to win the Senate. The Tea Party did the heavy lifting in 2010 and Sarah Palin was a big part of the job.

    Second, establishment Republicans need to get their hands out of the cookie jar and get to work. If they can't help out they need to find a nice golf course and retire.

    Peggy Noonan...I like her articles, but sometimes she comes across as just a little snooty. Just a little bit.

  24. Kathleen, post when you get some real world experience—like grocery shopping; until then, sit in a corner and park it up.

  25. I honestly thought the entire post was tongue in cheek until I read the comments. I'm surprised, as I actually think Sarah has had a truly "stellar week." The comments from Noonan and Bacchus are negligible and irrelevant; Neither of them wields much power at all, except in their own minds. This is certainly a change from what we are used to from Professor Jacobson. Plumwood is right - the fact is the GOP establishment lost the Senate; Sarah and others like her, i.e. tea party activists, saved the GOP this time. Juba is right - the professor's readers are extremely well informed - you won't get away with rehashing people like Noonan or obvious Palin-bashing. Unfortunately, this ill-informed post on her means we won't pay much attention to your succeeding ones.

  26. If he doesn't think grocery prices haven't gone up he hasn't been grocery shopping. Beef is up almost 50% over last year in my area and fruits and veggies aren't far behind.

  27. Lest we think it is in our heads. Even the econs are having worries of food price hikes -- http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/249211fc-ec1d-11df-9e11-00144feab49a.html

    Time to recalibrate the front sight Kathleen, you missed the target on this one.

  28. 1. Judiciously written and well referenced, Kathleen. Stick to your guns.

    2. My wavering support for Palin ended altogether when she resigned as governor. The response of Palin supporters to any reservations about her reminds me of the zealotry of Obama partisans in 2008. I worry that that's not the only resemblance between Palin and Obama.

    3. Wrt to Palin's fiscal conservatism, here is a discussion of her spending record as governor.

  29. I think it would be wise for the more enthusiastic Palin fans to keep from falling into the Ron Paul P-bot trap. I'm sure most of you have seen it, someone somewhere criticizes Ron Paul in a blog post (fairly or unfairly), and scores of his supporters come screaming out of the woodwork, all but issuing a fatwa for said critic.

    Point is, the RP guy is trying to be helpful to Ron Paul, but its just the opposite. Its ugly. And whatever the merits of his point, that point is lost in the overboard response to the original criticism. The result in '08 was, the biggest liability Ron Paul had was his supporters. I'm not a Ron Paul fan by any stretch, but he had some ideas/positions that, even if wrong, certainly deserved to be debated. Too bad his most devout followers did their best to chase people away from listening.

    Politics is about selling something. You can disagree firmly without being disagreeable. You can stand solidly on principle without running people off. Ronaldus Magnus was the undisputed champion of it. People get really sensitive about Sarah Palin because she has been so horribly and unfairly mistreated and slandered, and I totally sympathize with that. But we need to always keep in mind that as a supporter, you are selling her, and people like to buy things from folks who are smiling. The idea is to convert people to our side, not to punish them for heresy. If you go overboard, all you're doing is goading someone into digging their heels in all the more. (Like the democrats and the press heaping scorn on the TEA Party for over a year--how'd that work out?)

    Besides, this a woman who slayed the kings of the Alaska Republican establishment all but single-handedly. She's a big girl who doesn't need much help taking care of herself.

  30. I was irritated when I read the post by Kathleen, had tons to say, but you guys said it all.


  31. Off topic:
    Well I missed you Professor
    "As you know,..... Nice to see that things have remained calm in my absence."
    Back on topic:
    fatwa! fatwa! fatwa! fatwa! fatwa!
    Seriously however: Peggy Noonan?????

  32. Palin will be vindicated. Remember that monetary policy works with a lag. In 4Q09, GDP growth was 5%. By 3Q10, it had declined to 2%. Think about that. Growth in GDP had declined a full 3% in 3 quarters, yet on Nov. 4 the WSJ reported that “prices of staples including milk, beef, coffee, cocoa and sugar have risen sharply in recent months.” The fact that prices for staples were rising during a decelerating growth phase when unemployment is historically high is perverse. It should be sounding a warning about future inflationary expectations.

    Since the Federal Reserve first hinted about QE2 at its Jackson Hole, WY meeting in late August, the CRB commodity index has been on a tear, up over 15% in slightly more than two months. And that was simply in anticipation of more monetary accomodation from QE2.

    Now that QE2 is formal policy, the only thing we are reasonably certain about is that future inflation will be higher. The trick is knowing where the inflation will emerge. So far it's been in commodities (including the staples referred to in the WSJ), precious metals, as well as domestic and emerging market debt and equities. We have not seen inflation where we need to see it, which is in home prices and domestic wages.

    So, we're going to get inflation. We don't know where, and we don't know if it will be in a growing economy or a stagnant one.

    Palin will get the last laugh on this one, as she often does.

  33. Kathleen, I don't agree with you, but see no reason to malign your essay or your person. I hope others here can engage in the spirit of debating the points.

    I am tempted to be very age-ist and suggest that you may wish to consider that many Republicans have watched the ages-old drip-drip-drip narrative of the media types who insist that Republicans are idiots. I believe there is a media-bias case to be made that all Democratic Presidents have been brilliant and all Republican Presidents have been drooling morons. This psychological ploy has been a very successful approach among the professorial crowd and has sent many an insecure person begging to be re-accepted by their school peers.

    The horror of being seen as less smart than others is the Achille's Heel of vain politicians and their followers. The MSM has used this to stunning effect during the time I've observed it which is longer than I will admit.

    It's the only arrow in the quiver of the Left. It works for them and it's even working on you. You might want to branch out for something a bit more original if you wish to engage people who have been watching the "idiot" con-game for many a year.

  34. Face it. From now on we're gonna see a split in the Republican Party between the pro-Palin camp and the no-Palin camp and it's just going to grow. The No-Palin camp is going to feel like she will neuter the massive and long-awaited Republican (aided by the Tea Party) victorious thrust. The Pro-Palin camp will see her as our only hope to defeat Obama.

    Like the 2008 election, no amount of discussion is going to change the minds in each camp...it's just going to play out depending on Sarah's own ability to win each battle along the way. We may end up as divided as the PUMA's were against their own party when it chose Obama over Hillary.

    One thing though, no matter what you think: she would be a better president than Obama, period.

    I think the people who have decided not to read this blog anymore over this are over-reacting and a little childish. It's a great blog! They're kind of acting like Democrats for God's sake.

  35. Palin's greatest missteps are always PR ones, and may truly be damning for a Presidential race, but the fact that Noonan or the GOP establishment take any chance to criticize her for not creating miracles or being "properly prim" is in their own poor taste.

  36. re: the Update. Now you're saying the whole point of your post was over an ellipsis? That's feeble.

    "I think the people who have decided not to read this blog anymore over this are over-reacting and a little childish."

    I agree. While I disagree strongly with Kathleen's post, to go storming out is a bit melodramatic.

  37. This is by far the largest group to discuss a post in a long time. Kathleen, keep posting, and we will keep reading.If 100% agreement is not possible, good. Those that leave because they don't agree, that we be their loss.

  38. In the future maybe you can qualify your posts with an "In my opinion". At the end of the day that's all it is, which is all well and good. Understand though that most of the rest of us disagree with that opinion and the subsequent conclusions drawn therefrom, which is also, all well and good.

    It's not personal, we've just come to expect a greater degree of analytical thinking to things posted here.

  39. "I think the people who have decided not to read this blog anymore over this are over-reacting and a little childish."

    It's a legitimate reaction to drop a periodical on account of its content. The amount of content does not matter all that much. A brief remark can speak volumes about the person making it. If you have in mind those times when a brief remark was made and did not end a friendship, I'll give you that, but this often involves an apology, without which the cause would be lost. And we see no retraction or apology here. The opposite, in fact.

    It is reasonable at this point to judge this particular contributor a lost cause. Sure, there may yet be wisdom to be had here, but time is short and quality conservative commentary is plentiful.

  40. Wow. This has been my favorite post in quite a while. I knew I'd like you, Kathleen. Good for you for sticking your neck out and showing Palin still has some flaws. I see her as better suited on the sidelines than another run for national office, but I'm in the extreme minority of comment posters. You're going to have a tough time here, but I'm on your side.

  41. I had the opportunity to see Sarah Palin speak last night so perhaps my perspective on her PR this week is skewed. I have not seen that much media in my area since 2004 when President Bush came to visit. She attracted a larger audience than Obama's health care speech in March which I also attended. If this is a bad week I am sure she will take it.

    That said, it was clear to me after seeing her that she does use her unique position to stir things up and generate discussion on topics that might not always make it through to the average news consumer. A few people last night asked me about QE2 and no matter how you slice it, making the general public aware of the impending Fed action is a good thing. Kathleen accomplished something similar here as well, also a good thing.

    I happen to think, as a professional supermarket shopper (26 years experience qualifies right?) prices have risen and the evidence suggests they will continue on that path. Palin's larger point was that as the Fed undertakes a risky maneuver the already-strapped consumer is likely to be hit the hardest, as usual.

    She also took the opportunity, IMO, to get in a subtle dig at Tina Fey for the former Dairy Queen comment by referring to herself as former Governor and current Alaska housewife. I think sometimes that Sarah Palin using tact would be the equivalent of bringing a knife to a gun fight.

  42. This was cross-posted at The Onion, correct?

    "Noonan, a cherished vestige of the Reagan Administration, wields a tremendous amount of power"

    There is no way this wasn't classic sarcasm/tongue in cheek.


  43. Not impressed, Mr. Jacobson.

    To suggest that Palin should be embarrassed by anything the Obama-swooning elitist sorority sister Peggy Noonan says is silly. Indeed, Noonan's comments only confirm chippy elitist talking points and fortify Palin's base.

    Palin's endorsement of O'Donnell was one of her 92 endorsements. Her overall record was around 60%, surpassing any of the other candidates. In addition, she took risks; she showed her guts and the "bold colors" of Reagan's axiom. She and the tea party have been a boon to the Republican party; in fact, it is the oafish GOP establishment who's responsible for screwing up these losing senate contests.

    As for the inflation dispute, how trifling. We just learned today the DOI and White House colluded in a massive misrepresentation in forming a public policy that affects millions and this is a story? She claims inflation from food prices is on the march. It is in my neck of the woods, it is in hers.

  44. Kathleen, you are such a card! LOL. Love the sense of humor.

  45. the opinion piece in my view is full of error. Whilst Kathleen is doing the job of quoting the anti-Palin crowd (when has Peggy Noonan been positive towards Palin?) she does a great disservice by not rebutting the comment from Senator Bacchus regarding the Senate race.

    In the future it would help if Kathleen did a lot more in the way of homework, especially regarding those Senate races.

    For example, why did Kathleen not mention the role of voter machine fraud in Nevada? This was something that was highlighted in the early polling stage of the election. The machines in the county that takes in Las Vegas is maintained by members of the SEIU. When people were coming to vote they discovered that Reid's name was already marked.... ooops!!! The Dino Rossi/Patty Murray race was close, but when was the last time that there had been a Republican Senator in Washington State? When it comes to Christine O'Donnell, the finger should be pointed at Karl Rove, as well as the RNC not backing the person chosen in the primaries.

    Another point that might be relevant to Delaware is that the Rep candidates had the same vote pattern. It was totally doubtful that Delaware would send a Republican to the Senate, let alone to the House.

    Also, the Republicans have a major problem with people who like to sit on their butts, stay home and not vote, just to "teach them a lesson". Mike Castle at 80 years of age is an old fossil. He would not have won Delaware either. All of it was bad blood.

    Then there is the matter of Sarah speaking out against the actions of the Fed. As a matter of fact Sarah was right in what she stated. There has been an increase in the price of goods in the supermarkets. On top of that one has to consider that the basket of goods has been changed in order to hide the real rate of inflation. Some items have been taken out because of the odor-sniffing feel good factor which comes from paying a higher price for utilities due to watermelon policies.

    For those who bash Palin because she chose to resign from being governor, I remind them that the Democrats were abusing the system with the filing of ethics charges that had no merit. Palin had to pay the legal costs of defending these ethics charges. The whole thing meant that Alaska was suffering because of the time being wasted upon the frivolous charges. She did the right thing when it came to ensuring that Alaska was not harmed economically as a result of this frivolous action. On top of that, there remains the obvious question: "Why do you act so severe on Governor Palin when Senator Obama spent two years in the Senate before running for President?" An honest answer to this question is required.

  46. Anybody else think Kathleen might have a bff named Meghan?

  47. *snicker*

    Kathleen sure has everyone riled up!

    Professor, you must be smiling.

    You'll search far and wide to find a more devoted Palin fan than I but I think I'll just sit back and enjoy the fireworks, thank you.


  48. So how did those RINOs in California work out for the Senator from Alabama? Oops, never mind. Anyway, that idiot from the WSJ was pwned by Palin. I am shocked that your professorship didn't read the article quoted by Palin where it noted substantial price increases over the past few months.Seems like you owe us and Palin an apology. Seems also that the perfessor would make a great democrat congresscritter since neither the democrats nor the perfessor in this instance reads the articles or legislation that are the subject of debate.

  49. Kathleen McCaffrey try it yourself:


    U.S. city average: Ground beef, 100% beef, per lb

    U.S. city average: Bacon, sliced, per lb.



  50. The more you disrespect Sarah, the harder we will work to make her the next President. Your elitism is sickening, and you all of us an apology.

  51. Alabama Republican says his comments about Palin costing GOP the Senate were misinterpreted

    "In a statement Tuesday, Bachus spokesman Tim Johnson said the congressman was expressing a widely held belief that stronger Republican candidates could have won in states such as Delaware and Nevada, where Republicans Christine O'Donnell and Sharron Angle lost.

    "That's a lesson going forward," Johnson said. "As the article noted, (Bachus) was extremely complimentary of the tea party movement and Governor Palin in crediting them with the great turnout of conservatives that led to many of the successes on Tuesday."

    A little Spencer Bacchus walk back.


  52. "With Rep. Spencer Bachus of Alabama locked in a fight for chairmanship of the financial services committee with Rep. Ed Royce of California, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is pushing back at comments Bachus made to a local newspaper that “Palin cost us control of the Senate.”

    Palin’s comments are important because they could provide a major boost to Royce, who is campaigning against Bachus in part by arguing his record is more conservative.

    Referring to Bachus’s votes for government bailouts for Wall Street and the “Cash for Clunkers” program, which Palin called “the Bachus bigger government agenda,” Palin told The Daily Caller via e-mail, “No wonder he’s not thrilled with people like me, Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee and all the others who also endorsed commonsense conservative candidates.”


  53. This is nothing new from Noonan: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CrG8w4bb3kg&feature=player_embedded

  54. Peggy Noonan of the open mike fame. Seeptember 3, 2008

    "Peggy Noonan and Mike Murphy, two Republican insiders who have shaped the images and messages of presidents and presidential wannabes, really don't like Sen. John McCain's selection of Gov. Sarah Palin to be his running mate.

    And Noonan evidently believes the choice of Palin means the presidential race is "over" and presumably not in a way that would favor McCain.

    We know this because Noonan and Murphy were on MSNBC today and pulled a "Jesse Jackson," which means expressing one's true feelings when you believe the microphone is off.

    Murphy, who's consulted McCain in the past, referred to the Palin pick as "cynical" and that it clashed with McCain's reputation as a non-cynical politician. He also said he didn't think the McCain campaign's strategy was going to work.

    Noonan, who wrote important and memorable speeches for Presidents Reagan and Bush the first, used an earthy word to describe the Republican strategy.

    Here's a transcript I've produced of what the participants thought was an off-air exchange.

    Murphy: You know, I come out of a blue, swing-state governor world. Engler, Whitman, Tommy Thompson, Mitt Romney, Jeb Bush, I mean, and these guys, this is all like how you win a Texas race, you run it up. it's not going to work.

    Noonan: It's over.

    Murphy: Still McCain can give a version of the Lieberman speech to do himself some good.

    Todd: Don't you think the Palin pick was insulting to to Kay Bailey Hutchison?

    Noonan: I saw Kay this morning.

    Murphy or Todd: She's never been comfortable about that.. I mean

    (Someone says something unintelligible.)

    Todd: Is she really the most qualified woman?

    Noonan: The most qualified no. I think they went for this excuse me political bullshit about narratives..

    Todd: Yeah, they went to narratives.

    Noonan: Every time Republicans do that, because that's not where they live and it's not what they're good at, they blow it.

    Murphy: You know what's really the worst thing about it? The greatness of McCain is no cynicism

    Todd: and this is cynical. And as you called it gimmicky.

    Murphy: Yeah.

    Tood: Thanks guys.

    Murphy: See you later.

    What makes Noonan's comments over the open microphone so fascinating is that in her column which appeared in the today's Wall Street Journal she certainly seemed a lot more supportive to Palin than she did on the NBC set when she thought the mic was turned off.

    Because she jumbles up so many cultural categories, because she is a feminist not in the Yale Gender Studies sense but the How Do I Reload This Thang way, because she is a woman who in style, history, moxie and femininity is exactly like a normal American feminist and not an Abstract Theory feminist; because she wears makeup and heels and eats mooseburgers and is Alaska Tough, as Time magazine put it; because she is conservative, and pro-2nd Amendment and pro-life; and because conservatives can smell this sort of thing -- who is really one of them and who is not -- and will fight to the death for one of their beleaguered own; because of all of this she is a real and present danger to the American left, and to the Obama candidacy.

    True, Noonan seems ambivalent about Palin in much of the rest of what she wrote about the Alaska senator. She describe's McCain's choice as a "Hail Mary" pass that will either succeed or fail spectacularly. But she doesn't come close in the piece to saying what she said on the unexpectedly open mic."


  55. After reading this article several times to be sure that I was seeing what I was seeing, I went back and reread the two in front of it on medical care and realized that the authors on this blog are not pointing the way to recovery, you are part of the problem.

    Governor Palin did not cost us senate seats! She did not overcome the opposition from the GOP national organization. Among the lessons learned--don't send money any place except to candidates and organizations COMMITTED to the victory of those candidates.

    On the earlier subject, most of the people who do not have "insurance" (pre-paid care, actually) don't want it and say so by not buying it or by selecting life-styles that don't offer it.

    The "insurance" that pr4ovides my wife and I excellent care was purchased as a result of me selecting employers who offered the stuff we bought as a portion of my compensation. I have it because I earned it.

    The system provides me and my family outstanding care that fortunately has not deteriorated much since we got to the age that Medicare was forced on us driving total costs up significantly. (I will spare you my views on what lawyers have done to th4e cost structure. Say "Thankyou".)

    Back on the subject of the "uncovered" people--did you know that we used to have a Salvation Army Hospital, a Methodist Hospital, a Roman Catholic Hospital, A Lutheran Hospital, an Episcopalian Hospital....?

    The have been pretty much bee driven out of the charity business by lawyers and governments, but I notice that one of them (that is now owned by the State University) still has signs all over waiting rooms, halls, so on that say "If you have been here 15 (or 20) minutes without attention, please check in at th4e desk" and something about "Ability to pay will not determine the care you get."

    It was interesting to note that in two recent visits to hospitals for emergency care, one processed the paper work first only because the bleeding and pain were under control and it made things simpler for everybody, the other incident say me in the OR and I'm not sure they knew my name (they must have, because they had some history information.

    The point is, by every indication, everybody gets the care they need here.

    And there is no part of the socialized medicine and non-medical features of Obamacare that we need.

    I am sorry to have to remove this blog from my "must read" lists, but I am known by the company I keep.

  56. I think Sarah Palin needs to be defended vigorously by anyone who thinks her voice is important in the current debate and possibly for our future. She and her family have been attacked mercilessly by the establishment, with Noonan being a very good example, but also by 400 members of the Journolist who conspired, with malice, to destroy her. These attacks are ongoing. If we do not defend her, who will? They will succeed in her destruction if people do not use all their resources rebut any and all attacks on her.

  57. See comments from Paul Gigot, WSJ editor, about Palin's grasp of monetary policy.


  58. I'm all for alternative viewpoints. God knows I'm incessantly bombarded with them via the AP, the NYTs, and every other vestige of journalism on my Yahoo homepage. Where I'd prefer NOT to see them is the few webpages I bookmark under the heading "conservative." Mind you, this comes from a person who defines himself as both libertarian (a la Ms. McCaffrey) and conservative. The last place I need a "nuanced" and poorly informed critique of Palin is legalinsurrection.com. Hint: stick to drug legalization and free trade.

  59. "This snafu is only conflated by her seemingly-superficial understanding of the political system."

    Pot, meet Kettle.

    Prof Jacobson, I am disappointed that your blog has been intellectually tainted in your absence.

    Perhaps in the future, you could make it more obvious who the poster is, so I can skip this person's drivel.

    Much appreciated.

  60. I really did think this was a satire piece when I first read it. I now realize this person is serious. Or at least is pretending to be. Maybe our Prof has decided to follow Hot Air's lead and went out and hired Allahpundit's twin. But thanks to AllahP, I deleted my bookmark to Hot Air long ago and have never gone back. Looks like I'll be doing the same here if this is the new normal.


  61. Thank you dave v, you said it perfectly. It's not as if we don't have an array of sites that devote themselves to Palin-bashing on an almost daily basis. I came here for a little discussion, some laughs & a lot of camaraderie. I really thought the post was tongue in cheek until I read it a second time.

    I guess this explains The Economist & Vanity Fair.

  62. PS: (since this is my second response to this post)...If the Professor looks at his website stats, he will be able to tell whether or not Kathleen is really affecting his readership or not.

    Stats are real (over time)...unlike several people having temper tantrums :-)

    We'll see.

    But, as a very minor blogger myself, I do really sympathize with the difficulty of trying to keep up with all that's going on (especially moving towards the 2012 election cycle) and the implied obligation to provide a good service to loyal readers. Keep in mind that Prof. Jacobson's stated goal was to make this a better and more productive experience for us due to the fact that, unlike Prof. Obama, he is actually human and has some limitations!

    In any case, 2012 is the true test of whether conservatives will keep our constitutional republic intact. Godspeed.

  63. Hmmmm.

    @ Kathleen McCaffrey

    I hope subsequent efforts will be better then this trash. Frankly if future posts are of this quality then this site will go on my block list because I don't have either the time nor the inclination to bother with trash.

    As for you insinuation that Palin has it all wrong about rising food prices perhaps you haven't been food shopping lately. Choose an internationally traded commodity that isn't produced domestically; coffee. You'll see the price has stayed approximately the same but the net portions are much smaller. Only a couple years ago coffee was sold in 16oz bags. Now they're being sold in 12oz and even 10.5oz bags for the same price.

    On top of which do you really think that many conservatives care about the WSJ or some of the idiotic nonsense that is written therein? The vast majority of WSJ sales are to people in the stock, bond, commodities and other brokerage businesses. As for Noonan perhaps you haven't kept up with the rest of us but she lost her credibility a long time ago. Any reflected glory from working in the Reagan White House has long since worn off.


    Frankly you haven't impressed me and IMO I've got better things to do than read your particular brand of nonsense.

  64. Oh Kathleen. This is no way to begin. Let's review:

    "It has been a less than stellar week for Sarah Palin."

    She actually had a great night last week, as many of her endorsees won. Some didn't but 0.666 is a pretty good average.

    "Last Friday, Peggy Noonan insinuated that she was a nincompoop, and chastised her characterization of Reagan as “just an actor.”"

    Actually she outright called her a nincompoop. You'd think a grande dame like Noonan could do better than childish namecalling, wouldn't you.

    "Drudge is reporting that Rep. Spencer Bacchus (R-AL) claims “[the] Senate would be Republican today except for states (in which Palin endorsed candidates) like Christine O’Donnell in Delaware, … Sarah Palin cost us control of the Senate.” I doubt this, but it truly doesn't help the case for Palin that someone would be so outspoken in what is supposed to be a part of the country most amiable to her presence."

    If you doubt it, why are you using it as evidence to bolster your initial assertion? Plus, it's patently false, because Palin endorsed both conservative and non-conservative candidates depending on the location. Bachus had to walk it back and you ought to as well.

    The WSJ kerfuffle was entirely over an ellipsis. An ellipses! Her overall point, that QE would lead to inflation, was right on and her posting drew necessary attention to it. Going off on her quotation style just makes you look petty.

    "Palin brands herself as a fiscal conservative voice, though her misquote, and subsequent retort, can only lead one to question her understanding of the economy."

    Really? Do you disagree that QE will lead to inflation? Please, enlighten us with your superior knowledge and insight.

    "This snafu is only conflated by her seemingly-superficial understanding of the political system."

    Do you have any basis whatsoever for this assertion?

    "I'm not particularly anti-Palin, but this certainly doesn't warrant any respect on my end."

    Well I'm sure Mrs. Palin stays up nights wondering how to earn back your respect. You sound like a petulant college student. Perhaps you could examine your own irrational emotional response to Palin in future posts.

  65. To those who feel the need to malign (ironically, given the title of her post) Kathleen, remember that she is still a college student. I can tell you with certainty that my political leanings have changed since I was in school, greatly influenced by Ronald Reagan. Criticism is fine, but damnation of a callow adult is cruel.

    Sarah Palin evokes vociferous defense by average Americans because they see so much of themselves in her. She is not part of the ruling elite, yet she champions their cause and doesn't suffer fools gladly. So when you attack Palin with half-truths, complete falsehoods, conflated arguments, etc., you can expect a full throated rebuttal from one of her followers.

    And follower is exactly the right word, too. She is truly a leader. Think about it for a moment. When was the last time someone in the public sphere got people to notice what was going on over at the Federal Reserve? How about starting a national conversation about Monetary Policy?

    It isn't our current "President".

    It isn't any of the men expected to announce their intentions for the GOP nomination.

    It's the housewife from Wasilla, AK.

    If someone were to suggest this unlikely scenario to you even a year ago you would dismiss it as pure poppycock. But here we are.

  66. Noonan wields incredible power in the GOP? Not hardly since she went all Obama-girl on us!

    The rest of this post is petty and poorly reasoned. Not impressive.

  67. Group calls into question the validity of the Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI methods.


  68. Legal Insurrection has its very own insurrection on its hands and for very good reason. This post is really dreadful on so many levels. To quote Nobel physicist Wolfgang Pauli's comment on one student's paper, "Not only is it not right, it's not even wrong". It is in fine irredeemably bad.

    See also http://hotair.com/archives/2010/11/10/ap-poll-palins-favorable-rating-highest-in-almost-a-year/

  69. Wow! 80+ comments! Like I said, Ms. McCaffrey is the Allahpundit of LegalInsurrection! ;)

    Overall, this discussion has been one of the best I've ever read on any blog comment thread. Kudos, Professor! I may not agree with the posting, but I love that there are THINKING PEOPLE out there in the blogosphere having open debate and candidly discussing the topic! :D

  70. Kathleen -

    You are free to cut and paste this as you see fit to reply to the whiners:

    "Cancel your own goddamn subscription"

    W.F. Buckley

  71. http://www.cnbc.com/id/40135092

    "The “inaugural price survey shows a small, but meaningful increase on an 86-item grocery basket,” said Patrick McKeever, MKM Partners analyst, in a note. Most of the items McKeever chose to track were every day items like food and detergent and made by national brands."

    Seems as thought Walmart's data confirms Palin was correct.

  72. I don't get what the beef is? If you want to argue about the word significant- fine. But for most people, given the awkward state of the economy- any increase is not good. Particularly for those at the bottom of the economic ladder.

    My issue with Reddy's article is that he took Palin's comments on QE2 and its impact on inflation and zeroed in to nitpick about food inflation. And for many people, the only thing that matters is their balance at the end of the month and no one can argue that the cost of food has increased.

    Even in his response he has to admit that she's right. QE2 could impact future inflation (her main point) and the cost of food has gone up.

    As for Bauchus and Noonan- it's to be expected. They choose to ignore her 18/20 win for the "Take Back the 20" initiative. Also her wins when it came to congressional candidates.

  73. Who cares about Bauchus and Noonan. How is the opinion of two old out of touch relics a bad week for Palin? They are threatened by Palins clout. Palin having a good or bad week has nothing to do with what others think and say about her.

    Whether you like Palin or not should not be based on the opinion of others, not matter how supposedly "respected." Make up your own mind.

  74. I especially like this tripe: "I doubt this, but it truly doesn't help the case for Palin that someone would be so outspoken in what is supposed to be a part of the country most amiable to her presence."

    So it's somehow bad for Palin when someone makes a false accusation against her and not the accuser?

    And since when does Bacchus represent the entirety of a "part of the country?"

    It's elitist Noonan and career politician Bacchus who had the bad week. "Nincompoop?" What is Peggy, six years old?