On Sep 12, 8:52 am, "Heinrich" wrote:
> By Soeren Kern
> Europeans have greeted the news of Sarah Palin's nomination for Vice
> President of the United States with a predictable mixture of anger,
> frustration, resentment and resignation. After more than a year of
> uncritically praising Barack Obama as a supernatural figure destined by fate
> to solve all of the world's problems, European elites are suddenly coming to
> terms with the unwelcome possibility that the junior senator from Illinois
> might just be another human being after all.
> European commentary on Sarah Palin has ranged from ridicule, to ridicule, to
> more ridicule, to reluctant acknowledgment that Barack Obama may have met
> his match. In any case, many European elites are sensing that the Democratic
> presidential candidate, by failing to pick US Senator Hillary Clinton as his
> running mate, may have snatched defeat from the jaws of victory.
> A common theme running through much of European commentary is that Palin
> lacks qualifications; it is a critique European elites could, but will not,
> apply to Obama, presumably because he is a Democrat, and thus ideologically
> acceptable to Europe's enlightened class. Many Europeans lament that Palin
> is (according to Europeans) pushing the US presidential election into a
> battle of values rather than of policies, as if there is any real substance
> to Obama.
> But if there is one single aspect to Sarah Palin that threatens the smug
> certitude of Europe's secular gatekeepers, it is her Christian faith. It
> therefore comes as no big surprise that Europe's media elites have directed
> the bulk of their fury at American evangelical Christian voters. As if
> European secularism is not also a religion.
> What follows is a brief survey of what some of Europe's leading newspapers
> are saying about Sarah Palin.
> Ireland's most prestigious newspaper, the Irish Times, runs a headline that
> says: "Just a heartbeat away from the biggest half-baked Alaskan nightmare."
> Another article titled "Palin the latest torch bearer for anti-science"
> "Who literally believes that Jonah made his home in a whale's abdomen?
> Nobody really, apart from the US president-and the woman who was recently
> added to the 2008 Republican ticket.... Sarah Palin is the latest politician
> to carry the torch of science misinformation tainted by religious dogma lit
> during the Reagan administration and nurtured by George Bush.... Yet
> centuries after the Enlightenment, Sarah Palin, the putative US
> vice-president, can endorse the passing off of Bible stories as scientific
> facts, dressed up as the oxymoronic term 'creationist science'."
> And just in case the paper's editors were not being absolutely clear about
> their choice for US president, yet another article proclaims: "Obama
> embodies the future King dreamt about."
> Britain's leftwing Guardian newspaper tries to figure out "How to solve the
> Sarah Palin problem." Another story titled "Sarah Palin's war against
> information" asserts that "The McCain team knows that if the media do their
> job and give Palin the same scrutiny that any candidate for high office must
> endure, she will collapse." Still another story warns that "Obama faces
> lurking forces of darkness."
> The London-based Financial Times admits that "Palin erodes Obama's monopoly
> on change." Elsewhere, the paper warns that "Democrats dismiss Palin at
> their peril."
> According to France's center-right Le Figaro, Palin will "trigger the
> eruption of moral intolerance in the campaign." This is actually rather
> funny, because French elites are notoriously tolerant with everyone, except
> for those who do not agree with them.
> In keeping with the policies versus values theme, the Paris-based leftwing
> Le Monde says "The choice of Ms Palin has turned the centrist John McCain
> into the 'heir to Bush'." And the weekly newsmagazine Le Point calls Palin
> "the fanatic of the American heartland." It describes her speech to the
> Republican Convention as a "declaration of war [on the] Democrats as well as
> on the media and elites who dare to raise doubts about her ability to serve
> as vice-president of the United States."
> Germany's leftwing Der Spiegel takes special delight in mocking Palin's
> religious beliefs:
> "Sarah Palin's Pentacostalist [sic] past explains a lot about what she says
> in public, but the McCain campaign wants to play it down. Can a gas pipeline
> really be a manifestation of God's will?.... Sarah Palin has shown a habit
> of investing secular matters with religious meaning.... Palin acts as though
> all political decisions emanated directly from a divine resolution-and as if
> the Republican understanding of this resolution were the only one that could
> be correct."
> The Berlin-based left-leaning Die Tageszeitung says:
> "With the nomination of Sarah Palin as vice-presidential candidate, John
> McCain took on exactly what Obama avoided at all costs with Biden: A
> much-talked-about risk. McCain/Palin-this is where real life romps." Anothercolumnist writes: Sarah Palin "has a closed, conservative-in part
> reactionary-worldview. The coordinates of her value system are well known:
> Family, military strength, small government, a confident America. But there
> is a new face to these traditional values. This is a great attraction....
> This competition is an unexpected threat for Barack Obama."
> The center-right Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung runs an article about
> "Superwoman Palin" titled "Supermama" which argues that:
> "There is absolutely nothing wrong with ultra-conservative Republicans, amid
> their otherwise steadfast evangelical certainly, to make a U-turn. In the
> past for instance, when dealing with a mother of five and soon-to-be
> grandmother, they would not have been so quick and would even have
> considered it reckless to advise her to take on a job as well, let alone one
> of such importance."
> The Financial Times Deutschland greets the news of Palin's ascent with
> unabashed hostility:
> "McCain's hubris and irresponsibility are by now blatant. Hubris, because
> only a belief in his own immortality for the next four years could justify
> the choice of a vice president whose only experience, aside from two years
> as governor of Alaska, was as mayor of a suburb of Anchorage.
> Irresponsibility, because US presidents run a high risk of being attacked,
> as exemplified by John F Kennedy's assassination, as well as by the attack
> on Ronald Reagan. Imagine what would happen if a President McCain were
> shot...The world would wake up the next morning to a President Palin....
> More has been publicized in the last few days about Palin's person and
> family than about her views on domestic and foreign politics, which shows
> neither the American intellectual condition nor their public media in the
> best light. A preacher moderated the first debate between presidential
> nominees Obama and McCain during which they had to answer questions on faith
> and how they would handle the evil bad guys of the world. A politician whose
> attitude toward war and peace are largely a mystery could become president
> in five months, and people discuss the implications of her daughter's
> pregnancy. The country where all this is happening is the most powerful in
> the world. But for how much longer?"
> The Munich-based, left-leaning Süddeutsche Zeitung assures its readers that:
> "McCain used to look like an ideal candidate for the party. The conservative
> free-spirit repeatedly defied the current president and thereby emanated
> seriousness and self-assurance.... Sarah Palin threatens to demolish
> [McCain's] halo.... The lingering impression [is] that McCain called this
> fresh face to his side purely out of strategic campaign calculations....
> Palin's selection comes across as imprudent, unserious and, yes,
> dangerous.... McCain has miscalculated: those Democrats who were
> disappointed by Hillary's failure and might possibly have voted for the
> Republican veteran will hardly be lured by the ultraconservative
> pro-lifer.... McCain only hopes that the evangelical base will gather behind
> him with new fury. That is important, but not enough to win the election in
> November. The payoff for this deputy from the right is less than the price
> of the risk that McCain runs with the center. Sarah Palin will cost the
> Republican Party dearly."
> Meanwhile, Germany's center-right Die Welt, considered by many to be one of
> the country's better daily newspapers, offers a trite 15-question online
> Sarah Palin Quiz. Question 1: "Do you know Sarah Palin's current job?"
> Question 2: "Do you know the name of Palin's underage daughter, the one who
> is pregnant?" Question 3: "What revelations have become public about Sarah
> Palin?" Answer A: "She likes to wear latex and leather"; Answer B: "As a
> child, she once stole a lollypop"; Answer C: "Her husband was arrested for
> drunk driving"; Answer D: "She first wanted to be a Democrat."
> Spain's leftwing El País newspaper reports that Sarah Palin is
> "a figure who comes from the America that is farthest removed from, and
> incomprehensible to, the European spectator...[who] represents values and
> policy proposals...the outlawing of abortion, the preponderance of religious
> faith, the supremacy of the traditional family, the subjection of the State
> to individual initiative..."
> Spain's conservative ABC newspaper runs an opinion essay titled "Obama Who
> Art in Heaven" which says that Sarah Palin
> "seems to be treacherously undermining the huge dose of goodwill that
> European public opinion has devoted to Obama. Now the governor of Alaska, a
> member of the National Rifle Association, who promotes her state as the land
> of hunters, is the exact opposite of Barack Obama."
> Palin represents and America that is "wild, fundamentalist and a
> practitioner of lynching" while Obama represents an America that is
> "archangelic and cosmopolitan" because, for millions of Europeans, Obama
> "represents the antipode of the death penalty and the free access to guns."
> There is a "vast divide between the intellectual sophistication of 'The New
> York Review of Books' and the mass consumption in the commercial emporium of
> Wal-Mart. Those divides are nothing less than the reality of the United
> States: the Harvard of Obama the angry and prosperous Alaska of Sarah
> ABC then pauses for an odd moment of reflection:
> "Our old error is prejudging rather than trying to understand. That is why
> we never forgive the United States while we absolve every other country in
> the world.... Even if Europeans believe otherwise; Obama is not in heaven,
> but in the middle of a presidential campaign."
> Thanks, ABC, for the reminder.
> The Barcelona-based La Vanguardia writes that
> "Palin can sell what no candidate other can offer: a boring and hardscrabble
> American life. Not only is Palin 'one of ours,' according to enthusiastic
> Republican voters, who have awakened from their slumber with unusual force,
> but she could be anyone's niece. A real peanut butter girl." The newspaper
> concludes: "Undoubtedly, of all of the surprises of this campaign, [Palin]
> is the most brilliant. With her nomination, McCain has shown two things:
> that he is very smart and that he is not yet defeated."
Watching this EU socialist meltdown is a gratifying spectacle.