For some reason, I didn’t finish the sentence right. I think she needs to sit down with some journalism school-trained PR professionals so that they can give her the going over she needs to feel confident about this.
Miss Teen South Carolina wasn’t a jab at all. Watch the speech patterns, and listen closely to poor Sarah Palin’s sentence structure. This is what happens in public speaking when someone is overwhelmed, and it’s a classic symptom of stage fright. It’s likely an isolated case, but to prevent it from happening again, she needs to get more training. She showed grace under pressure during her convention speech, particularly given that her teleprompter didn’t work and she was touching on her script so lightly no one noticed. But this is a different format, one she should be really good at.
Regarding her talent for picking things up: Sure. She has an aptitude for growth, for acquiring knowledge and owning it — such is evidenced by her fast rise as governor. I doubt when she was running for governor anyone felt she’d be able to command a state budget and slash it effectively. Yet she did. That takes a certain amount of deftness. So it would be wrong to suggest she can’t effectively learn to apply her judgement to national security issues.
That said, it’s important to make this distinction. Conservatives would be in error to suggest Sarah Palin is a strong national security wonk. She’s very clearly not. Instead, they ought to focus on how people think of the politicians in the executive.
Do we elect experts on issues, or do we elect people with experience using their judgment on a broad range of issues? Can we trust Sarah Palin to surround herself with advisers who would provide her with the clearest picture, where she can then apply her judgment? In this light, it’s much less worrisome.