******************** THIS BLOG HAS MOVED TO WWW.LEGALINSURRECTION.COM ********************

This blog is moving to www.legalinsurrection.com. If you have not been automatically redirected please click on the link.

NEW COMMENTS will NOT be put through and will NOT be transferred to the new website.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Palin Can't Win ≠ Palin Shouldn't Run

There is a lot I could say about John Ziegler's article in The Daily Caller demanding that Sarah Palin not run for President, and insisting that Palin has become beholden to an inner circle of yes-men and yes-women.

I'll make just two points.

First, Ziegler's main argument is that Palin cannot win because she has been so unfairly damaged by mainstream media attacks and distortions.  That argument conflates two different concepts. 

I agree that Palin has been unfairly but extensively damaged, but that does not mean she should not run.  Pre-selecting our candidates based upon what the mainstream media does is a huge mistake, because whoever the nominee is, that person will be savaged by the mainstream media and entertainment industry beyond comprehension.  Palin simply has been the test case.  Perceived electability now says little about actual electability once the nominee becomes the focus of the pro-Obama media.

Let anyone who wants to run run, and let the voters sort it out in the primaries.  If Palin is unelectable in a general election, that will be an argument against nominating her; just as it is an argument against certain other candidates.

The primaries will bring out the best or the worst in the candidates, and candidates either will overcome voter concerns about electability, or the candidates will not succeed.  Let the voters decide, not the editors of The Daily Caller or National Review or even tiny inconsequential Legal Insurrection. 

Second, Ziegler is a complete narcissist.  His article is all about him, his feelings, and his imagined facts.  There is little substance, in fact almost no substance, to many of the negative conclusions he reaches.  Here is a good example, in one of the sure-to-be quoted passages from the article:
There’s also the fact that Sarah’s entire operation is increasingly managed like a CIA field office; that she’s adopted a bunker mentality; that she’s trusting the wrong people, some of whom I know are simply exploiting her.
Yet what actual evidence does Ziegler cite; what quotes from people are included; what substance is there in the article other than the fact that Ziegler himself is offended that his opinions that Palin should not run may not be resonating with Palin (in fact, that's not even clear). 

The prime example Ziegler cites is that when he told Paln directly that she could not defeat Obama, the people in the room were silent:
Before I left, I felt I had to give the governor at least one piece of advice. After all, I know how politicians work. They surround themselves with yes-people. No one dares speak up. I figured I’d never get another opportunity like this again, so, with the very best of intentions, I told her: “You have to know, you can’t beat Obama in 2012. The media won’t let you. They won’t let him lose and the narrative about you is too negative to correct in three-and-a-half years.”

She said nothing. No-one else spoke, either. I looked around at my crew, and the same thing was written on everyone’s face: “What the hell are you doing, Ziegler?” It was the first of several times where it would be obvious to me that Sarah Palin does not like hearing bad news.
From that silence Ziegler weaves a Stalin-like theory of a cloistered candidate under the control of evil minders. 

Maybe there is a good reason Palin does not keep Ziegler in her inner circle; his article is all about him, trying to portray himself as some heroic figure willing to stand up both for and against Palin. 

Sorry, Ziegler, but there have been many of us standing up against the biased media attacks on Palin at risk of damage to our careers, and while you certainly do deserve credit for what you have done, it's not all about you.
*     *     *     *     *
The Ziegler article in many ways demonstrates what is wrong with the Republican Party today.  It is too reactive to the mainstream media, seeks to impose its vision on the Republican electorate, and when all else fails, resorts to smear and innuendo against someone who has endured more than any other potential candidate under consideration.

I trust the voters.  It's too bad some very vocal Republicans do not.

Follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube
Visit the Legal Insurrection Shop on CafePress!
Bookmark and Share


  1. As you noted, whoever the Republicans nominate will be subjected to the same savage treatment that Sarah has received (well, maybe not Jon Huntsman, the libs/dems/rinos/msm seem to like him).

    And, so far, I have not seen any signs that any of the other potential candidates could withstand that intense savagery for even a few weeks, let alone the duration of the campaign or a term in office.

    Contrary to what Zieglar says, Sarah may just be the ONLY one who has the backbone/strength/guts/[male anatomical reference] to win.

  2. “You have to know, you can’t beat Obama in 2012. The media won’t let you. They won’t let him lose and the narrative about you is too negative to correct in three-and-a-half years.”

    Well guess what? That same could be said to Romney, Cain, Pawlenty. For in the end, none of the MSM will want to see Obama defeated. Its the same ole trick the press always pulls. To sell papers the press want two horses in the race. Once the two horses are identified tho, they immediately turn around and tear down the Republican horse. That beat down usually occurring when about 2/3rds of the primaries are done and there is a clear leader.

    The press has been doing this since the 60's. Its the same script. This time tho they are being a little preemptive to shape the GOP space.

  3. "...Ziegler is a complete narcissist."

    I've the same impression for quite a while. When I read the piece this morning, I got a "creepy fan" or "spurned courtier" vibe from it. Ziegler may or may not be right in what he says, but the article says much more about him that it does Sarah Palin.

    "Let anyone who wants to run run, and let the voters sort it out in the primaries."

    Exactly. I'm getting bloody sick and tired of gatekeepers in the media and the blogosphere declaring who has "permission" to run and who doesn't.

  4. I agree! And Zeigler is all about himself, like most BIG mouths!

  5. Tell me which Republican - any Republican - the media thinks could win...

    A woman has to be three times as good to get one third the votes. And given that, it's important to note that she almost got John McCain up to even, might even have been able to carry him over the top if it hadn’t been for his lack of willingness to fight and the financial debacle that broke so conveniently for Obama.

    And that was against OVERWHELMING support for Obama by the Journ-O-list, in the tank media.

    And that was against the “transformative” and historic nature of Obama’s candidacy.

    And that was after 8 years of Republican bashing by the media and every left wing org on the planet.

    Sarah Palin is the MOST VETTED candidate in history. She has survived the nuclear blowtorch – not only survived, but stands tall and proud, and crushes Obama at every turn with a simple Facebook message – of truth, calling him on the BS.

    Obama himself could not have withstood one one millionth of the scrutiny she has been subjected to. He got a free pass.

    It’s time to stop buying into the “she can’t” narrative. She has been, and can continue to BEAT HIM.

    And the world will be a better place for it.

  6. Palin has been through the fire. With the constant attacks from the media, she will only become stronger and savvier. You betcha she's going to study up on areas she didn't really need to as a state politician. The media weakened her, but they didn't destroy her, and she's going to come back stronger and stronger because of it. The whole email fiasco shows how desperate the media are ... and how relatively unimpeachable her character is. I'd like to see other politicians survive a hyena-like attack on their email correspondence.

    LukeHandCool (who thinks the media's main problem with Sarah Palin is that she obviously is not a modern, high-functioning human being and she should remind the American people of that fact every chance she gets ... and who would love to see a bumper sticker depicting the media lifting boxes of printed Palin emails as she stands nearby and good-naturedly asks, "Whatcha lookin' for? Can I help you find something? ... Please come again !!")

  7. Back in 2008, there were lefty bloggers who were saying that the reason to support BO (over Hillary who was "too polarizing, to divisive, and whose negatives were too high") was that he was the media darling and therefore he could win (as opposed to Gore & Kerry). He sure is the media darling and he sure won, but how did that work out for the country?
    Voters will have to fight the media to get our country back.

  8. Looking briefly into Ziegler's past one finds that he doesn't consider himself a Republican nor a conservative (of course the MEDIA pins that label on him due to the topic's agenda = Dissing Sarah) he has stated he's more like a libertarian and an anti-Democrat. As they say; WTF?

    Seems he's been getting a lot of flack for his documentaries so maybe this is his way of sucking up to the liberal elites in Hollywood. (hey I did a positive documentary on how the media tried/tries/is screwing Sarah Palin but I'm not FOR her or anything so ... got any work?)

    This also is another way to get himself in the news. If I wanted my 15 minutes of fame and didn't have any honor or scruples, I'd go make some inflammatory gesture against Sarah and most likely SOME media operative would pick up on it and interview me. (See Levi Johnston, Andrew Sullivan, and other various half-wits, nit-wits and assorted liberal morons who've decided that they've got the inside scoop on how Sarah Palin is either an evil genius or weapons grade stupid. Didn't we go through this with Bush Derangement Syndrome? Maybe we should rename that to Symptoms of Liberal Angst and Feelings of Uselessness and Having Wasted One's Whole Life Believing in Fairy Tales and Now You Need Someone to Blame for Your Feelings of Inadequacy but that doesn't roll off the tongue very well nor can it be wrapped up in a 3 letter acronym.

    Back to the Make Believe Media and their obsession with finding SOMETHING, ANYTHING to drive a stake through the heart of Sarah Palin:

    Look at what they're doing with the E-MAILS. It's backfiring on them though. People are finally seeing the obsession and the imbalance:

    Obama's records are either sealed or the Media isn't interested in getting them or finding anyone that ever knew him.

    Sarah gets an electronic colonoscopy, thousands of interns and 'journalists' spend days and days searching Alaska and anywhere she's been to find something to snark about.

    See the difference? Even liberals are getting uncomfortable with the obsession. It's making them look bad when they bring up their dislike of Sarah. (birds of a feather and all that).

    When you've lost Ashton Kutcher, you've lost America. Pay attention LaTimes, WaPo, NYT, Chicago Trib. Your days as rainmakers are numbered and you're doing it to yourself.

  9. Even Zeigler's picture smacks of shameless self-promotion, as he stands next to Sarah holding up his video in front of him. That pose reminds me of someone holding up two fingers behind someone's head in a group picture. How annoying!

  10. I agree everyone that wants to run should and the primary will sort things out. I think some people fear that a plurally may blindly vote for Palin in a primary even if she underperforms. That's an unfounded fear, but I think that's why some people feel the need to emphasize her perceived un-electability.

  11. Jacobson, you've gone off the deep end. Palin is toxic. A poll of republicans suggested that they do not want her to run (this was linked on hot air as recently as last week).

    Why do you want her to run so badly? The "not equals" symbol in this post's title suggests that you can handle subtle distinctions, so here's one for you: just because Palin has been attacked unfairly--and she has--does not mean that you have to support her. See the difference? You can defend her against the baseless attacks against her, but just because someone doesn't want her to run does not mean that they are "out to get her".

    I wonder if you can stop for a second and ponder that fact. Since your support of Scott Brown, you have really seemed to veer off into a world where the distinction I point out above doesn't matter.

  12. If you want make the argument that Palin cannot win, you should be arguing on different grounds than Ziegler is. One approach is to argue that she cannot win because she is a woman and the country is not ready for and will not accept a woman president. Race helped Obama, but gender hinders Palin. The media will not even mention this theme because they know that is much truth in it. Another possible argument is that the Republican establishment will not accept her and will support the Marxist fool that we have as president rather than help her. Their reaction to Christine O'Donnell in 2010 can be seen as a warning to Palin.

    Ziegler is playing a dangerous game. He says he wants to ensure that Obama will be defeated, and to do that he needs to stop Palin. If, however, Palin runs and gets the nomination, then his efforts to weaken Palin will aid Obama. He runs the risk of making happen the one thing that he says he does not want to have happen.

  13. Hmmmm....

    Maybe we should start a meme that Obie can't win, therefore Obie shouldn't run. Who knows -- it might work, after all, it sank LBJ.

  14. Did you also notice, Professor, that Ziegler is engaging in a "poor-me, poor-me" tactic in his article? He lamented that Sarah Palin has made him "unemployable."

    If he's in that situation, he should not blame Sarah Palin, but his sorry self.


    "maybe not Jon Huntsman, the libs/dems/rinos/msm seem to like him"

    Don, we noticed the same thing with John McCain in 2007-2008. You know what happened next.

  15. I got about halfway through Ziegler's article at the DC yesterday and then couldn't read further.   Ziegler's self-promoting whining was more than I could bare.

  16. 99, Palin is toxic to whom? You? Because you have bought into the media hype about her? Because you don't think a woman should hold the office of POTUS? Because you disagree with her on the issues (what issues would that be?)?

    If Palin wants to run, she should. She meets the Constitutional requirements And she will bring interesting debate to the campaign season. No other woman in history has been so demonized by the media (well, except for Rachel Jackson). Yet she is still standing. And the press is chasing her around like Italian papparazzi.

    Instead, the "conservative" inside the beltway pundits will tell us that Romney is our guy. He ain't mine, and I would rather have McCain than Romney. It seems the press, repeating 2008, have decided who we should vote for.

    The press, which died a long time ago as they became nothing more than op-ed writers, wants the bragging rights of saying "See, I predicted that person would win." Well, I don't want Ziegler's opinion, or anyone else's opinion for that matter. That is one of the benefits of being an adult; I am allowed to form my own opinion.

  17. I think you could make a long list of people who told someone else they couldn't do something.

    Ya know, Ed, you'll never be able to climb that mountain - Sherpa before Norgay.

    Buster, Buster, Buster, you can't beat Tyson - fired trainer

    Team, just go out and have fun, you'll never beat the Russians but Bronze is good too. - Herb Brooks' predecessor.

  18. @99f3e46c-9379-11e0-a6be-000bcdcb8a73 - You do realize that the Obama zombies defeated the Clinton machine (hard) and then the inept McCain campaign (not so hard). If Palin is so toxic she won't get any traction in the open primaries.

    One thing we do know is that the MSM can not damage her further; she can only go up. Any other GOP candidate will have survive what she has endured for 2+ years. You think Romney is up to that?

  19. OK 99, tell me why. I like Palin but I don't worship her. Polls? Polls are meaningless before a campaign starts. Moving poll numbers is what a campaign is about. Not comparing Palin to anyone, but in June '07 Hillary was a foregone conclusion for the Dem nomination, and in '79 Reagan was 30+ points down to Carter. Don't pee on my legs with polls 17 months out.

    She's a quitter? Fair enough. She's explained that to my satisfaction. Can she explain that to the majority? I dunno. If she wants to try, then I say she should have at it. If she can't she's toast. *shrug*

    She has no "gravitas"? Bunk. She's been driving the narrative for the past 2 years. She's got more "gravitas" than any other Republican.

    She's stupid? I hear that all the time, and yet when I look beyond that claim, at the details of what she's being called stupid over, I find out that she's not stupid at all.

    She's extreme? Really? Her actual policy positions mirror the majority of Americans' better than any other candidate. Not what others say she believes, what she says she believes.

    So what is it 99? Give me facts. I suspect all you have left is "but...but...but...EVERYBODY knows she's an IDIOT." I don't know that 99, convince me.

  20. Mr. Jacobson - Thank you for an excellent, succinct analysis of Ziegler's article. I concur. In fact, like others, his words and feelings felt a tad creepy....he sounds like a little boy on the outside looking in....and I'm glad he is.

    You always do an excellent job and I enjoy reading all you share.

  21. Sarah Palin has not been damaged by anybody or anything. She is not damaged. She is Sarah Palin.

  22. Reagan: Never speak ill of another Republican.

    Why is this so hard for the right to follow?

  23. I like Palin, but I don't know if I would support her in next year's primaries. I think she may need another cycle to finish rebuilding her image.

    While it's true that whoever gets the the GOP nod will be subjected to the media's evisceration, Palin has the extra hurdle of not only needing to defend herself, but to actually change people's minds about her.

  24. This lady is like no one else I've ever seen before in politics. Everything about Obama was manufactured, and staged by the media on the wishes of the left. I'm a young person, and I haven't watched tv for about 2 years now, because the liberal permeation on almost all stations has me at a breaking point. My brain feels like it is "drinking" paint thinner when I flip to some stations and listen to the content. Almost everything is leftist on the tv. I know that leftism and social engineering, and top down government is poison for this country. Ziegler has chosen media for a career, so he is exposed to much more media that the voting population. Make absolutely NO mistake. TV content is written to the tune of certain narratives. One of those narratives is "Sarah Palin can't win, crazy, such a loser, etc." I believe he has swallowed this narrative, and doesn't realize it. Perhaps he believes he came to this conclusion independently. I'm giving him the benefit of the doubt here, but he may just be a centrist who would love to vote for Chris Cristie, or Mitt Romney. Those supporters who hold Mitt or Chris up to Palin in an objective way, and come away thinking the two are better than the one maaaaaay not have the country's best interests in mind. People want Obama out. Most Non-Chicago Dems want Obama out. The man has destroyed the Democrat illusion for years to come, as I feel Jimmy did. Forget Sarah can't win. If Palin makes the ticket, she will win. What are they going to do, vote for Mitt Romney on a ticket he isn't even on? Vote 3rd party or Obama? Ziegler will vote Palin and like it if she's on the ticket, and so will the rest of you. I think this lady is going to be sweet, sweet medicine for this country. I am so happy to have the chance to vote for a lady with morals like this in my lifetime.

    @TPaP: "Regan: My daughter is a drug addicted porn star (TRUE), so I'll pass federal top-down social engineering legislation dictating minimum sentencing guidelines for non-violent drug offenders. Decades from now, they'll be throwing rapists, murderers and other violent offenders on the street to make room for a guy with a pound of pot. The prisons will be overcrowded, and there will be no real ideas to tackle the international drug problem besides throwing more people in jail, partly because they will all be dealing with huge medicare and social security crises I failed to address.
    Why is the chief engineer of the Prison State so widely followed? Regan is the Republican's baby. Tea Party needs to find another model, because this man would not pass the Tea Party muster if he tried to court them as an unknown today.

  25. This comment has been removed by the author.

  26. What Ziegler's saying is that we should acknowledge our true ruling class -- the press and the pundits -- and allow them to decide who is presentable and who is not.

  27. "Jacobson, you've gone off the deep end. Palin is toxic."

    Uh-huh. Says the anonymous cow-herd.

  28. "While it's true that whoever gets the the GOP nod will be subjected to the media's evisceration, Palin has the extra hurdle of not only needing to defend herself, but to actually change people's minds about her."

    As opposed to Romney, who has to convince Republicans why they should vote for Obama-lite?

    Or Pawlenty, who has to get over the "who?" factor?

    Or Huntsman, who has to convince Republicans he's not just continuing his service in the Obama administration?

    "What are they going to do, vote for Mitt Romney on a ticket he isn't even on?"

    I'm not sure I'd vote for Romney even if he is the nominee. What would be the point?

  29. Romeny doesn't thrill me, but from an economic standpoint he is much stronger than Palin.

    You can't keep saying polls are meaningless. Do they mean everything? No. But they mean something. Saying polls are meaningless on this blog, the blog that used poll numbers like crazy in the Scott Brown election, is hypocritical.

    Again, and again, and again, Palin polls badly. People hate her. She will mobilize liberals and many independents against her. She cannot win because she has so many enemies.

    You have to separate your love from her from reality. I feel neutral about her. I think she has been attacked constantly by the media. But when people stop watching their favorite show "Dancing with the Stars" because they hate the Palins, especially in the very moderate area as I am now, you have to give it up.

    People HATE Palin. They will destroy her on election day. Admit it.

    Ask yourself: if nominating Palin meant a victory for Obama, would you do it? I think not. So come up with a real strategy, with a candidate who can win, OK? Otherwise, we're screwed, and I will not take that chance. You can buy all the Palin books you want, but when it comes to the election, choose someone who can win.

  30. Until Ronald Reagan was elected president, the same argument could have been made about him.

    Run, Sarah, run!

  31. Then there are the bizarre statements in Zeigler's piece like this:

    "People rarely change their minds about anything anymore . . . ."

    So much for Gallup.

    It's a little like Ziegler has become unhinged since Stephen Bannon is getting such good press for his movie and pointing out the unfair treatment of Palin (remember the first part of the movie is X-rated statements by Palin's foes) that was also the theme of Ziegler's dvd which got no press and no praise.

    I feel sorry for Ziegler. He's doing an imitation of Wile E. Coyote at the dynamite plunger.

  32. Screw the Mainstream media. Screw the Left. We'll decide who we want to run for us, not them !!!

    Ziegler is a fool. Whoever wins the Republican nomination is going to beat Obama. The man is a failure whose policies are HURTING people.

    Food, gas, electricity, taxes, regulations, ObamaCare, Israel, and on and on. The man is hemorrhaging support.

    He'll be left with welfare entitlement voters, union members and hard core Leftists. 40% of the vote, max.

    The man is more wounded than Palin, he just has the media saying it isn't so. Well, it IS so.

    If you think 2010 was a blowout, wait till 2012, even more people are awake now, and more so by the 2012 election.

  33. 99 reminds me of a hypnotist....repeating the same garbled line over and over and over......

    the line "admit it" is the giveaway.

  34. Ziegler laments that Sarah Palin has made him "unemployable".

    Meghan McCain laments that Sarah Palin has made her "undateable".

    (Are those bad things?)

  35. Ziegler must of thought he was on the "Palin gravy train" for life. He was one of the first to come to her defense, and did a good DVD, but things must have changed with their business relationship (this occured about a year ago). Palin probably didnt' get a good vibe over time. She simploy moved on.

    Ziegler, now scorned and pissed, realizes that the documentary by Bannon means no future $$$ for him....he out of the loop.

  36. Concern troll is concerned!

    So all you have going for your position,99, is what Gallup says a year and a half before the election. Begone! I have no need to listen to you decry the doom the belle polls. We'll have a campaign, and then we'll have an election, and then we shall see what we shall see.

  37. "The press has been doing this since the 60's. Its the same script. This time tho they are being a little preemptive to shape the GOP space.

    Yep, remember that "missile gap" in 1960 that pushed JFK past RMN by a hair's breadth? And that gang of 1000 psychiatrists in '64 that declared Goldwater mentally unstable without a moment of couchtalk having taken place? I do.

    But now, the arrogance of the lamestream MSM is such that they presume that they can set up a GOP strawman nominee that even a weak loser like Obama---who is raising money ILLEGALLY AGAIN---might be able to surmount, even with the economy in the tank, zero job growth, & the US on its way to being a second-class power, intentionally.

  38. If she intends to run, Palin needs to sit down with a sympathetic interviewer (like maybe Dr. Helen?) and say:

    I couldn't go on. I couldn't afford my lawyers' fees that my spreadsheet said would be needed to fight the new ethics charges that were being filed day-by-day, and as bad, it was costing my State a lot of money. If I had stayed Governor, I would have bankrupted my family. It broke my heart to resign, but there was no alternative available to me.