I recently sat down and read his autobiography and could not put it down. Sarah Palin's political appeal is rooted in one thing: she is not a politician. Throughout the book Palin revealed her disgust of what politics had become whether at the local, state, or federal level. Millions of Americans are just as tired of politics as she is and I believe that is why she is so appealing.
Palin's book traces her life from childhood to life just after the election. She looks at her marriage, her family, her children, her politics, her policies, her influences, her controversies, her experiences, and her opinions. Much has been written on Palin and on her book and I will certainly not add anything new to the conversation. But there are a few things that need to be pointed out about her book.
First, the false and malicious attacks are more ridiculous now than they were during the campaign. Palin provides the background and context of each controversy she was a part of revealing just how far reaching and ridiculous all of them were. Perhaps the most outlandish of them all is the accusation that Trig Palin (her youngest child born with Down Syndrome) wasn't really her baby. People actually developed websites and theories into such nonsense. Palin put it to rest when she quoted her dad who said something like, "I was there when he was born. He came right out of her!"
Other controversies like Trooper Gate and the numerous ethical violations are just ridiculous. It is amazing how far people will go to destroy someone in order to not have to face debating real issues. This is just one of the many problems with the political climate today. We spend more time looking for ghost in people's closest that aren't there than we do debating real issues. People cared more about the accusation that Todd and Sarah were getting a divorce (which they weren't of course) than about Palin and Biden's view on substantive issues. Palin rightly makes this point over and over again.
Secondly, it is refreshing to see a "politician" put the people before themselves. I have a problem with career politicians. Not because there aren't any decent ones, but that to be a career politician seems to put oneself before the people they are suppose to be representing. Palin, I am convinced, is no such politician. This is what is so amazing about her decision to step down as governor. She could have played politics, but to do so would have cost the state millions of dollars more and kept Alaska from moving forward. So, instead of improving her political resume for future ambitions, she stepped down. The political pundits considered this political suicide and Palin agrees. But her career and future in politics wasn't her priority; the people were.
Thirdly, Palin is not an ignoramus. She really knows the issues. However, due to her mischaracterization made in the media and her opponents, many consider her unknowledgable. That is far from the truth. Reading the book really impressed me with how informed she is on the various issues and what the solutions are. Her expertise is on energy and oil. I for one would seriously consider voting for her primarily on that issue (not to mention her stances on social issues). Gas will only increase and our national security will hang in the balance so long as we refuse to drill for our own oil. Palin has a lot of expertise in dealing with this issue.
Furthermore, her political philosophy seems to be what this country needs right now. Rather than waste money taken from the American people and increasing our national debt, Palin offers better solutions to our economic ills. More government isn't the solution. Freedom is the solution. That is what makes America great.
Finally, the McCain campaign made the mistake of playing politics. This was one thing that was apparent to me while she was discussing the campaign. She had to look a certain way. Dress a certain way. Say certain things in certain ways. Make certain appearances, etc. Palin got caught up in politics and it left me disgusted. Not after Palin, but after the politics. Politics has become more of a show than of actually doing anything. Politicians want to look tough, appear compassionate, and be decisive. Rather than actually be those things, too many politicians hire publicists and make-up artists to make them appear to be such things. This really killed the McCain campaign.
Palin is not going away. I do not think that she will announce her candidacy for the Presidency until she is essentially forced to by the people of America. Her distaste for "politics as usual," (as she puts it) is what makes her so appealing. Americans are tired of the nonsense that goes on at the local, state, and federal level. Her knowledge of the issues will only become more apparent as the weeks and months and years wear on. Look for something to happen in the Palin camp.
One thing is clear, Palin is not going away. Her popularity will only increase and with her popularity will come more endless and false attacks. Sadly, this is what American politics and political discourse has become. We haven't heard the end of Sarah Baracouda yet.