Daniel Larison of The American Conservative takes issue with my taking issue with the conservative Palin critics. He feels pretty strongly she’s an empty suit (empty skirt?).
He thought her convention speech was substance-free and her debate performance was mediocre. I view things a bit differently. That convention speech was one of the finest political performances I’ve ever seen. The line about not seeking the good opinion of the media/political elite alone was worth the price of admission. And not just in entertainment value. That was substance. It was about embracing a different scale of values than those some think are so dominant as to brook no dissent.
But leave that aside. Sarah Palin has a political record. Let’s forget the ups and downs of her public speaking career and consider that. Are there conservatives who are going to argue her record is less than admirable? I don’t think it can be done. (No, this is not a challenge to see whether conservative contrarians can provide great e-alert material to the Obama camp.)
Palin is still imperfectly seasoned, but I think she’s going to be a transformative political figure in American politics. We’ll have to revisit that question in due time.