The main problem with Sarah Palin isn't her, per se. It's the creepy cult-like following she inspires, from the editing of Wikipedia pages to match her version of history to this insane rant by John Ziegler. John, you see, has dedicated his life to protecting the reputation of this multimillionaire celebrity from the slings and arrows of people accurately describing what she does.
For many reasons, the first week of January 2009 was clearly the longest and most difficult of my life. By late Sunday morning, exhausted and now preparing to cross the country for my grandfather’s funeral, I staggered out of the shower and my then fiancée told me someone had called.
“Hi, John Ziegler, this is Governor Sarah Palin,” said the familiar voice on my phone message. There was a pause. “From Alaska,” she added. It’s typical of Sarah’s underappreciated sense of humor to pretend this needed to be clarified. “I just sat down and watched your movie about 9/11,” she went on, “and it’s unflippin’ believable”—”flippin’” is one of her favorite expressions—”I would like to talk with you about this next documentary. Could you give me a call?”
He then promptly dumped the fiancee and got back into the shower for fifteen minutes of American Beauty-style self-pleasure, muttering "from flippin' Alaska" over and over and over again.
As you can see, John Ziegler has a very special relationship with Sarah Palin, the same relationship that an unhinged college student has with the cute girl in his intro Bio class who asked if he was coming to Open Mic night tomorrow. And now that Sarah Palin has disappointed him, she has him to answer to. And answer she will. Oh, you'll see.
However you’d describe our dealings with each other, though, one thing is undeniable: the most controversial figure in American politics ended up dominating my life in ways I could have never imagined, until I finally reached my breaking point, days before she made her way up the east coast on a bus, stopping along the way to have public pizza with Donald Trump. The whole strange spectacle made pretty much the entire planet conclude that she’s probably running for president.
However, what she appears to be currently doing is almost certainly destructive to her cause and her country. I say this as the guy who risked $300,000 of his life savings to produce the very first pro-Sarah documentary back in 2009 (and the only one with her participation), while putting everything on the line to fight countless battles on her behalf—such as demonstrating outside David Letterman’s studios in New Yorkafter the late night talk show host made a joke about 14-year-old Willow Palin getting “knocked up,” being dragged away in handcuffs from a laughable awards ceremony for the liberal ‘news’ anchor Katie Couric, getting regularly attacked as a guest by liberal hosts on MSNBC, and responding with $100,000 offers to charity to debate them on her behalf.
I’ve fought so hard for Sarah, I’m almost unemployable.
As sad as we all are that you've been wasting your fucking time for the past few years, that's really not Sarah Palin's problem. It's between you and the hair doll you keep in your dresser drawer.
Ziegler goes on to talk for four interminable pages about how after everything he's done, Sarah Palin has the gall – the gall! – to be ungrateful to him, and to do things that he doesn't approve of. It quickly goes beyond a strategy critique into something far more disturbing, a bitter rant at her rendering him impotent despite everything he's done for her.
This is the underbelly of Palinism. She's a woman fetishized as strong and independent, but secretly beholden to all the strong men who are secure enough to admit that they wouldn't mind being hunted from her helicopter. (But only in missionary.) She benefits from it at the same time she suffers from it; the same people who are willing to literally rewrite history for her will one day turn on her if she makes too significant of a misstep. I look forward to each time Palin is embarrassed, because it means that there's still some space in American politics to realize that some people are actually just idiots, and not just conservative savants who speak the language of the common man. But her best hope is to play the Ann Coulter card and keep performing the same song and dance until she shuffles into irrelevance; her breaking with the people she's kowtowed to since becoming a national player will lead to this sort of entitled, angry whining about how much she owes them, and the sham of her appeal to the conservative base as anything more than a useful prop will end.
I do hope she runs for President, because it'll hopelessly screw over the GOP. But as she becomes exposed, I don't look forward to how she'll be treated by her former allies.