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There must be a special place in hell for a politician who can’t even steal a quote off a Starbucks cup without lying

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Strange ironies occur every time Sarah Palin repeats a famous quote. In last Thursday’s debate, it was Ronald Reagan’s exceptionalism…shining-city-upon-a-hill quote, a vision Sarah evoked in an attempt to ride on the ghost-coattails of Reagan’s legacy. No, the irony wasn’t in the conjuring of the Christian-Right’s code word for infusing Christianity into American government. The irony was hearing a candidate who — despite drawing repeated blanks just a few days earlier when asked such gotcha questions as, “What do you read?” –suddenly owned the miraculous wherewithal to let roll off her tongue this 6-syllable word drawn from some obscure 17th century school of political thought: exceptionalism. Sure, she pronounced it with perfect poise, the same way she did with all of her lines. I used to know a man whose parrot could say, “shit.” Of course, the bird had no idea what it was saying, but it said it anyway, come rain or come shine.  

Yesterday’s irony was Madeleine Albright’s famous quote that reads, in full: I think there’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women. No, the irony was not  Sarah’s, um, accidental “misquote” of Albright’squote (replacing the word “help” with “support,” which altered the meaning slightly, to give the impression that Abright was casting an indictment on women who don’t vote for other women).

No, the irony arose from the context in which Madeleine Albright originally made this statement. Specifically, Albright made this statement in the wake of her efforts to to have rape declared as a ‘weapon of war’,at which time she made her now-famous statement. See, Madeleine Albright was saying there must be a special place in hell for women who wouldn’t help these particular victims of rape. I shouldn’t have to point out why this is such a strange irony for a woman like Sarah Palin but, to be clear, I will.

The treatment of rape vicims is not a topic Sarah should be evoking at this time, as former Mayor of a unique Alaskan city that charged rape victims up to $1200 for rape kits used in emergency room exams used to prosecute their attackers. While this controversial law did not originate with Mayor Palin, she certainly endorsed it time every time she approved a city budget that relied on the revenue from these rape kits. And, for the record, John McCain’s voting record jibes with Wasilla’s policy. 

Yeah, yeah. Sarah predicted yesterday that the evil liberal elitist media filters would do something horrible today with her Starbucks quote. What she has yet to *get* is that, when the media is critical of her, it isn’t that they are being critical of women or of Republicans or even of Sarah Palin, per se. It’s the lies, you see. It’s the lies and the ineptitude that emerge every time Sarah Palin speaks. 

p.s. Earth to Sarah: Back when you were in, like, 6th grade, Madeleine Albright received her doctorate from one of those elitist East Coast universities and has since worked in Washington politics. Does that make her, like, um, too experienced?

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