Governor Sarah Palin – Taking A Play from Governor Ronald Reagan?

Here are a few paragraphs courtesy of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Library:

1975 – Looking beyind the Governorship:

…after leaving office, a consulting and public relations firm began to book speeches for Reagan, and provide him with opportunities to write newspaper columns and give radio commentaries. This allowed Reagan to reflect on his past 8 years of public service and contemplate the next chapter of his life (link).

November 13 – Ronald Reagan runs for President of the United States

Throughout the Carter administration, Ronald Reagan became increasingly concerned about things that were happening in Washington, D.C. Cuts in defense spending, distribution of wealth, national economic planning, faltering national security, rising unemployment, increasing inflation and climbing interest rates were leading the nation into a serious recession. Worst of all, Americans were losing faith in themselves and in their country and were growing increasingly frustrated with excessive taxation and oppressive government regulation. With a public outcry for change, and confidence that Ronald Reagan would be the agent of change, Reagan agreed to fun for President of the United States and declared his intention in a speech at the New York Hilton Hotel on November 13, 1979 (link).

Fast forward to today.

I will concede that Governor Sarah Palin is no Ronald Reagan but I won’t concede that she has inspired and charged the core and base of the Republican party.

As the U.S. Senate takes up the intrusive, burdensome and mislabeled global warming legislation, we can expect it to fail. Energy will become the most important issue of the future. There is no doubt about it. For Democrats, it is about controlling people’s lives. For Republicans, its about prosperity, national defense and sustainability. Sarah Palin knows this and has seen a huge opportunity to get out in front of this issue. When the “Cap & Trade” bill goes down in defeat, expect the Governor to step up and show some leadership on this issue.

Sarah Palin is not done with public service and she knows where the debate is heading. As I mentioned in an earlier post, she is one smart lady. (and I know that drives you liberals krazy!)


  1. Obviously Jonah and other pundits knew about Gov. Sarah Palin’s plan to resign.

    Here is his open letter:

    In her recent attack on the media, she also ignored his advice to quit playing the victim role.

  2. kralmajales says

    If she does catch fire at all, and run for President, do watch Romney and Pawlenty…and the establishment of the GOP. They will not take her lightly and will roast her.

  3. Well, that rambling, incoherent speech was something you’d never see from Reagan. It was laughable and sad at the same time.

    I understand why she appeals to the people at blogs like Sonoran Alliance. As Ross Douthat wrote in his New York Times column:

    “In a recent Pew poll, 44 percent of Americans regarded Palin unfavorably. But slightly more had a favorable impression of her. That number included 46 percent of independents, and 48 percent of Americans without a college education.

    That last statistic is a crucial one. Palin’s popularity has as much to do with class as it does with ideology. In this sense, she really is the perfect foil for Barack Obama. Our president represents the meritocratic ideal — that anyone, from any background, can grow up to attend Columbia and Harvard Law School and become a great American success story. But Sarah Palin represents the democratic ideal — that anyone can grow up to be a great success story without graduating from Columbia and Harvard.”

    To those of us who are educated professionals in New York and D.C. and the Bay Area, etc., she is a nutjob and a figure of ridicule.

    To you unducated people in the backwaters of America – Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas – she is your heroine, to buck you up in your cultural resentments toward those of us in the mainstream who actually demand competence and intelligence. You like simplicity – “Drill, baby, drill!” – because you can’t really comprehend details and nuance.

    So I expect she has a bright future among the minority of Americans who are the fans of blogs like this.

    But politically, even in the Republican party, whose establishment also thinks she’s a nutjob, Sarah Palin is irrelevant.

    She is certainly no Ronald Reagan, and to compare them is to demean our former President and an important figure in American history.

  4. Not to mention that Reagan served out his two terms as California governor, no matter how difficult the state’s position or his own political standing was.

  5. And just compare the thoughtful, elegant prose in Reagan’s diaries with Palin’s gibberish in her tweets. If you can’t see the difference, you’re even more of a crackpot than I previously thought.

  6. Tucson Vice says

    That laughable, rambling speech is something you would never see from Reagan?? He was practically DROOLING on himself by his last year in office!!

    I can’t believe it. The farther you guys tank, the tighter your grip on the same failed platform that got you where you are today. Unbelievable. And awesome.

  7. Reagan, a personal and political hero of mine, served out his two terms as Governor of California. He was elected in 1966 and left office in 1975, one year before he sought the presidency. Sure, he thought about running in 1968 and 1972, but backed off. The post from Tucson Vice is a cheap shot that also does not stand up to scrutiny.

    Palin has 18 months left in her first term as governor of a much smaller state than Alaska. If she is doing this to spend more time with her family, as part of her speech implies, than she has my respect as a fellow parent. If she is doing this to build up a nest egg of speaking fees and to lay the groundwork for 2012, then she is behaving like the person Todd Purdum describes in his recent Vanity Fair article. That person is both calculating, self-indulgent and has no true commitment to service, which are traits no one who is both fair and knowledgable would ever ascribe to Reagan.

    By the way, I have a lot of respect for Mitt Romney as a husband, father and for what he accomplished in the private sector and in Massachusetts. If he runs like the person he truly is, than he could be a very formidable GOP opponent for Obama. However, in his last run, he sought to reinvent himself as a right-winger and was also a feckless debater against McCain. That guy, if he resurfaces, will lose again…and deserve it.

  8. Auntiefed says

    Well said, Rex. Thank you for injecting some common sense and civility into this thread.

  9. The one thing that has not been addressed by either post on SA has been if she is so smart and this is going to be used to launch her 2012 presidential run in some form, wouldn’t you not do it on the Friday before a national holiday, on not on a day when lots of people are traveling and not able to watch the news… This is why people have been saying there is a scandal involved in this. I am not saying there is, but it seems like she was trying to bury this story…

    Also, she talked about how it would not be fair to Alaskans for her milk it as a lame duck… well what has she been doing the last 6 months with SarahPac and going to NYC and DC all the time? She has been ignoring her state already, why does she suddenly care about doing it for the last 18 months in office?

  10. Nevermind the fact that her Lt. Gov is now the defacto lame duck.

  11. James Davidson says


    She has been a victim. The press has attacked her with venom and spite. Exhibit 1: The Caribou Barbie moniker. She has called them out on it. What’s wrong with that? She has the benefit of the truth on her side.


    You’re right. As they say, politics ain’t bean bag.

    Professor Grayson:

    All politicians have rambled at one time or another. Biden doesn’t know any other way to talk, maybe because he’s the first Biden in a thousand years to go to University (haha). If you want a ramble, listen to Obama explain why his family should get the very best health care but the rest of us should get government issue only. Obama reads a speech beautifully. He stumbles extemporaneously.

    “To those of us who are educated professionals in New York and D.C. and the Bay Area, etc., she is a nutjob and a figure of ridicule.”

    Reagan was called crazy and routinely ridiculed by the cognoscenti, and he ate ytheir lunches every day. Clark Clifford, the epitome of that class, referred to Reagan as the “amiable dunce.” Of course Clifford ended in disgrace, and Reagan goes into the American Pantheon. I thought Andrew Jackson settled this debate 180 years ago when he crushed John Quincy Adams. Or try reading the Best and the Brightest and you’ll see what a bunch of pompous fools the folks you cherish have been.

    You’re right about Reagan’s diaries, but your type never gave him that kind of credit when he was a candidate or president.

    Incidentally, which colleges did the three greatest presidents of the last 60 years go to? In Reagan’s case, was it Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Stanford? or Eureka?
    Where did Truman go to college? Or Eisenhower? Answer these questions and you’ll see how much value your point has.


    I agree with most of what you wrote, but you made one error. Reagan did run for president at the 1968 convention, but backed off when he had no chance to beat Nixon.


    Didn’t you read today’s announcement that the FBI has no investigation going of her? As to her timing, would she have gotten more attention if she made the announcement today? I doubt it.


    Parnell is hardly a lame duck. He now will command the scene and will have the edge over any rivals in the 2010 election. Governor Palin has insured that the Murkowski forces have no chance back into the Governor’s chair.

    I just find it amazing how Governor Palin draws out the rank biases and prejudices of the “educated professionals in New York and D.C. and the Bay Area, etc.” It is so crass.

  12. BSExpress says

    Libs hate her? Hell, I’ll miss the kooky broad. She’s a comedian’s dream come true. Why don’t you run her and Joe the Plumber as a ticket in 2012? Now that’s a sure winner! You betcha!

  13. James Davidson says


    “Broad”? Go crawl under Imus’s rock and learn to leave the sexism out of it.

  14. James:

    Of course I saw the FBI statement which is why I said I am not saying there is a scandal… but you have to admit its a bizarre day to do it. Everyone knows that people do press conferences with bad news or have leaks and press releases on Fridays because they get the least amount of coverage and that effect is multiplied when its the day before a national holiday.

    Don’t try and say Palin doesn’t know that, and if she had done it Monday yes she would have gotten more media attention, I dont think there is any question about it. She could have been the top story for probably over a week if she waited till after the Michael Jackson funeral today.

    There is something bizarre about the announcement. I am not saying bad about Palin will come out, (there might even be a good thing) but I think we will learn of a reason why she had to make the announcment so quickly.

  15. “rank biases and prejudices of the “educated professionals in New York and D.C. and the Bay Area, etc.” It is so crass.”

    Um, the biases are for competence, dignity, stability, hard work, and perseverance.

    I know, we kooky liberal professionals. . .

    Here’s actually the most interesting commentary on Palin. As someone who teaches and writes postmodern lit and who’s just spent the last three days at the annual Afro-Punk Festival, I like the idea that Palin could be our first “punk PoMo President.”

    –From the Huffington Post by R. J. Eskow:

    But another way to view her speech is as the latest example of a style that could, in the end, prove revolutionary. Call it “post-modern” politics.

    Look up postmodernism (or “PoMo,” as some call it) and you’ll get a broad range of definitions. It’s almost like the Supreme Court definition of obscenity: You can’t define it, but you know it when you see it. It was born of the sense that there are no underlying principles or conventions we can trust. It involves identifying, naming, and ultimately shattering the rules under which we’ve all been operating. It’s related to the theater concept of “breaking the proscenium” or “knocking down the fourth wall,” acknowledging that some of us are actors and some are spectators in what is, after all, only a performance.

    Coherence? That’s so yesterday.

    It was very postmodern of Palin to characterize her resignation – an outrageous act by any reasonable standard – as a principled refusal to “go with the flow.” Her vision of politics is so profoundly radical that even performing the duties of office becomes unimportant. The job you sought is no longer the point. It’s all about the performance. It’s politics as Conceptual Art.

    Of all the Postmodernist movements, Palin most closely resembles the punk-rockers of the 1970’s, especially the ones who insisted that having musical skill reflected an outmoded attachment to obsolete forms. Emotion was enough, and the dominant emotion was fury. A quick glance through Media Matters will illustrate the many forms of fury that are now bubbling on the Right.

    Some say that there are more Palin scandals coming, although there’s no evidence for that. In any case, scandals don’t matter that much to a Postmodernist Politician. “Oh, sure,” the PoMo Pol can say, “they care about those things, because that’s how they’ve always operated. It’s what they do.” When they attack her she can kick through the Fourth Wall and claim it’s all part of the show.

    Politicians have always done that, to a certain extent. They’ve always claimed that they’re not part of the system, and handled bad publicity by implicating their critics and the press. But Palin takes it to a new level, to the level of art form. It could be argued that the bipartisan outrage now being expressed toward her in Washington is directly proportional to the revolutionary nature of her words.

    Sure, she’s a long shot for President, but there are scenarios where she could win. Picture this: It’s 2011 and unemployment is still high. The Democrats have been too cautious with their economic remedies, so lenders have pocketed bailout money without loosening credit for the average consumer. People are confused and frightened. Along comes Sarah with her Postmodernist neo-punk message: “The system is broken! Democrats, Republicans, all those guys in Washington have let you down. Let’s really change things!” One or two moderate gestures to placate swing voters, and she could be the 45th President.

    Odds are she’ll fade away the way most pundits are predicting. But there’s a chance – call it one in five – that she could seize the moment. She seems ridiculous to most Washington insiders right now, but truly transformative figures often seem ridiculous … until they change the world. Democrats who dismiss Palin do so at their own peril, particularly considering the risks involved.

    It probably won’t work – but it could. Think about it: She’d be the most revolutionary force to hit her profession since Huey Long. Or Johnny Rotten. And the country would never, ever be the same.

    You betcha.

  16. James Davidson says

    Professor Grayson:

    “Um, the biases are for competence, dignity, stability, hard work, and perseverance.

    “I know, we kooky liberal professionals. . .”

    Not hardly. It’s the biases that someone has to be a symphony-going, opera-loving, artsy-fartsy graduate of the Ivy league to be competent.

    We all know that smug, superior attitude is a lot of baloney. The pomposity of the ilk you cherish hides a deep insecurity.

    Come off it Professor. Talent blooms all over this country, and in many callings and walks of life.

    Lincoln, the most eloquent and the greatest president in American history, was born on the frontier, hunted and fished and wrestled, and never went to college, or even more than a half year of school.

    If you ever read Beveridge’s Life of John Marshall, you would know that the greatest justice of the Supreme Court also was born on the frontier and never went to college or law school.

    Truman never got a college degree, Eisenhower went to the Military Academy, and Reagan went to Eureka College. Not an Ivy-Leaguer among them. Yet they were the best three presidents of the last 60 years.

    Obviously times have changed, and I am not running down the value of an Ivy League education. I have one myself from the most ivy-clad of the Ivy League schools. The point is that the Ivy League is not everything, and an Ivy-League degree doesn’t entitle you to look down your nose at Sarah Palin or anyone else.

  17. Kenny Jacobs says

    James Davidson, bringing back this whole “college” thing to Gov. Palin; I don’t think the issue with her is whether she went to college. She obviously went to school, several of them as a matter of fact. Gov. Palin just found it difficult to FINISH her program in a timely fashion. She seems to be rather consistent at quitting.

    But the idea of pegging Sarah Palin’s credentials to Marshall and Lincoln was truly inspired.

  18. James Davidson says


    You missed the point. I didn’t compare Governor Palin to Lincoln or Marshall. No one on the current scene comes anywhere close. My point was to show that talent abounds all over this great country in many callings and walks of life and to demonstrate how ridiculous Professor Grayson’s fixation on the Ivy League has been. The Ivy League universities are great, but they are not the be all and end all. After all, President Obama, a Columbia graduate, muffed the first and biggest task of his presidency. As his Vice President admitted, President Obama misread the economy and crafted an ineffective stimulus plan.

    Big Sis, whom all you liberals adore, merely went to a Catholic college on the peninsula — a fine school, but not an Ivy League college. Vice President Joseph Biden Jr. finished in the bottom third of his class at the University of Delaware. Look where it got him — he lost the debate to Governor Palin. Speaker Pelosi also went to only a Catholic college, but she did just fine – personally. Her husband made a fortune in real estate in California, and that allowed her to climb the greasy poll of San Francisco politics. She wants to spend our money like it was hers, but that’s another story.

    By the way, I have to correct a mistake. I should have posted earlier that John Marshall never graduated from college. He did go to William and Mary, but dropped out after less than a year. He was a quitter, just like you-know-who, but things turned out all right for him, and for the United States of America, despite his lack of a college degree.

  19. J.D.,

    “Look where it got him — he lost the debate to Governor Palin.”

    Only because the bar had been set so low for Ex-Gov. Palin that she could have staggered up to the podium reeking of gin and still probably made it a draw – which is what of course all polling agencies called it.

    And even she had beaten Biden, so what? To use her favorite sports analogy (basketball), Biden is the Washington Generals of political debate. We’ll see how she folds when she has to go into a debate where the moderator isn’t giving her a reach-around.

  20. Kenny Jacobs says

    James, thank you for the clarification and I take you at your word.

    I am truly dismayed at the prodigious efforts to bolster Gov. Palin’s political future while ignoring her obvious character flaws. How long until we discover her talents resemble Evita Peron more so than Pres. Reagan?

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