Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Craziest Conservative of the Day: John O' Sullivan

By Michael J.W. Stickings

For writing, in response to conservative "snobs," that Sarah Palin and Margaret Thatcher "have a great deal in common."

Honestly, I can't bring myself to quote from, let alone comment on, this ridiculous piece. Well, okay, here's the kicker:

But she has plenty of time, probably eight years, to analyze America's problems, recruit her own expert advice, and develop conservative solutions to them. She has obvious intelligence, drive, serious moral character, and a Reaganesque likability. Her likely Republican rivals such as Bobby Jindal and Mitt Romney, not to mention Barack Obama, have most of these same qualities too. But she shares with Mrs. Thatcher a very rare charisma.

Now, to be fair, O'Sullivan was once an advisor to Thatcher. So I suppose he writes with some authority on the matter. Which is to say, he gets Thatcher right, albeit in a deeply partisan way.

What he doesn't get is Palin, whom he overestimates with reckless abandon. Sure, she's plucky and driven, and perhaps (to some) likeable, but she's also arrogant, ignorant, un-self-conscious, and seemingly unaware of much of the world around her. Thatcher was never a genius, but at least she had (prior to her current dementia), a keen and perceptive mind, not to mention a genuine curiosity about the world. Neither one is from the establishment, to be sure, and each is (or was) an "outsider," but that's about as far as it goes.

O'Sullivan tries desperately to make the case, but it's doomed from the start.

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