Palin’s Populist Twist


Yes, it is worth noting this passage from her recent Tea Party speech:

“Do you want to know why nothing ever really gets done? It’s because there’s nothing in it for them. They’ve got a lot of mouths to feed — a lot of corporate lobbyists and a lot of special interests that are counting on them to keep the good times and the money rolling along …

This is not the capitalism of free men and free markets, of innovation and hard work and ethics, of sacrifice and of risk. It’s the collusion of big government and big business and big finance to the detriment of all the rest — to the little guys. It’s a slap in the face to our small business owners — the true entrepreneurs, the job creators accounting for 70 percent of the jobs in America.”

She's positioning herself against the corruption of both parties, just as she positioned herself in Alaska as the hockey mom prepared to take on her own party elites' collusion with Big Oil. Alas, her efforts in Alaska soon unraveled, even after she was able to tax the oil companies and deliver the goodies directly to Alaska voters. Her gas pipeline is as distant a prospect as ever. And when one reviews her career, it's hard to resist noting that her populism (combined with extreme Christianism) was the only way she could see making it to the top – especially after the Murkowskis dissed her. Opportunism or principle? It could be both, but with Palin, one should never under-estimate the former. She's shrewder as a politician than some understand.

I wonder if she's contemplating a populist third party campaign. Or if this anti-establishment message is what she will bring to the GOP contest. Or whether she is just trying to recast her celebrity image a little. Well, we'll soon find out.

(Photo: Former U.S. Vice presidential candidate and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin rides on a motorcycle before participating in 'Rolling Thunder' rally May 29, 2011 in Arlington, Virginia. Although not an official guest, former U.S. Vice presidential candidate and Alaska governor Sarah Palin is expected to participate in today's motorcycle parade from the Pentagon to the National Mall. By Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.)