Sparring

Over at Ace Of Spades, the morons have been following the occasional public squabbles between Sarah Palin and Chris Christie with some interest. And I have to confess, I find it interesting, too.

But only slightly.

In some ways, Palin and Christie are very different types of Republicans. But in other ways, they are quite similar. They are both very popular and very polarizing figures. They are both people of exceptionally strong wills. They both don’t shy away from confrontations. And they both have a history of speaking their minds.

I happen to like them both, in different ways. But the fact that they are both very prominent Republicans means that the Democrats and the media (but I repeat myself) will try to engineer some kind of fight between the two, trying to get them and their followers to do the left’s dirty work by tearing each other down. Which is why Christie can pretty much count on being asked about Palin at every opportunity, and Palin — should she open herself to questions about Christie from the typical hostile questioners — could expect the same.

What I see whenever these little dust-ups between Palin and Christie flaring up is two very different people simply asserting their differences — “I’m not her” and “I’m not him” — in relatively benign fashion, with just enough edge to guarantee that the statements will be breathlessly reported. In brief, they are calculated to guarantee coverage from the hostile media.

In Palin and Christie, we have two very prominent, very successful, very charismatic Republicans with very different styles and visions. The nighmare of the left is for these two individuals — and the factions they represent — to find enough common ground to forge an alliance.

Stranger things have happened. Odder couples have formed political marriages, quite successfully. Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush come to mind.

Which is why the left has to do all it can to keep figures like Palin and Christie apart.

One of their favorite tactics of late has been to impose a de facto religious test on public figures. “Oh, you’re a Christian? So, you believe that the Bible is the word of God? Which means you believe in the creation story, and reject evolution and Darwinism?” At that point the God-fearing politician has been exposed as an anti-science, ignorant bigot who wants to resurrect the Scopes trial and put every single biology teacher who dares speak the heresy of Darwinism behind bars. Obviously, that kind of zealot needs to be kept far, far away from any kind of position of power.

Two thoughts immediately come to mind. The first is, I don’t recall the last time “evolution vs. creationism” was a national issue. I’m an avowed agnostic, so obviously I side more with Darwin than Biblical literalism, but I really don’t give a rat’s ass about any public figure’s stance on the issue.

The second thought is that the creation story is from the part of the Bible that is common to all three of the world’s major religions. But, for some reason, it’s only the conservative Christians who get asked about their beliefs — I’d be vaguely interested in hearing, say, Senator Feinstein (Jewish) or Representative Ellison (Muslim) address their opinions of the Genesis story.

But only vaguely. As I said, I simply don’t see it as a public policy issue, and my interest would only be in the novelty of seeing those worthies face such an unexpected question.

But back to Palin and Christie. Yes, there’s a hefty amount of interest from the left in seeing these two take swipes at each other. But, as I see it, they know it — and are playing along just enough to keep the attention, without actually giving the left what they want.

Well played, Governors. Very well played, indeed.

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Posted by on March 6, 2011.
Filed under Chris Christie, Politicians, Politics, Sarah Palin.


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  • Stan

    That funny part is that Dems have fallen for this act hook, line and sinker. We all know that Palin and Christie are playing them like a fish in the line. They (Dems and Media) will eventually grow tired of this and find something new to jab them with. The real losers in this charade are the Dems and the media that props them up.

  • john

    Uh huh, so Christie publicly telling the country why Palin will never be president is really a shrewd plan to promote them both.

    Shorter Jay: “Bullsh*t, bullsh*t, Palin really is popular, honest! look over there… evolution!, blame the media, uh, yeah, they meant to do it, that’s the ticket!… it’s secret governor mojo, so, uh, pay no attention!”

    Now please excuse me while I get back to my “nightmare” of two people the electorate couldn’t care less about having a double-date.

  • RefudiateObama2012

    I think it’s an overstatement to call it occasionally sparring. After multiple statements on Palin by Christie, Palin made her first comment about Christie.

    Dewey Whetsell, an Alaskan fisherman, offered Palin’s detractors some advice when he said this:

    “And no one ever told them what happens when you continually jab and pester a barracuda. Without warning, it will spin around and tear your face off. Shoulda known better.”

    Christie poked her one too many times, and she ripped his n uts off. I guess her aim was a little low. ;-)

  • irongrampa

    Christie should have checked with Santorum, Obama, and a host of others before attempting to zing the lady. They could have warned him of the consequences.

  • http://yinyangtree.blogspot.com Joe Yangtree

    The second thought is that the creation story is from the part of the Bible that is common to all three of the world’s major religions.
    I think you mean both of the world’s major religions, unless someone secretly inserted Adam and Eve into Hinduism. Judaism has about 20 million adherents. There are over 800 million Hindus. There are also far more Buddhists, and probably more Sikhs in the world than there are Jews.

  • SCSIwuzzy

    or all 3 major monotheistic religions

  • James H

    I would note that Palin and Christia are different kinds of Republicans in a couple other respects:

    First, Palin strikes me as more of a creature of the social conservative wing of the party, while Christie seems more a fiscal conservative than a social conservative. Their values and actions appeal to different constituencies within the GOP.

    Second, at least for now, Palin is not a politician. She’s a combinatin entertainer, media personality, and pundit. Christie, on the other hand, is a politician. While he has a take no prisoners style, he faces more constraints on his actions and behavior than Palin does.

  • http://yinyangtree.blogspot.com Joe Yangtree

    or all 3 major monotheistic religions
    That works, except for the Sikhs. They are also monotheists

  • http://sabbahillel.blogspot.com Sabba Hillel

    I’d be vaguely interested in hearing, say, Senator Feinstein (Jewish) or Representative Ellison (Muslim) address their opinions of the Genesis story.

    I would say that you shouldask a religious Jew who knows what Judaism really is about the subject.Asking Senator Feinstein about the Jewish viewpoint is as accurate as asking President Obama about the Christian viewpoint or Richard Nixon about the Quaker viewpopint on the Viet Nam war.

  • BluesHarper

    Christie VS Palin – That’s about nothin’ .

    &

    I think God created evolution. What are you going to do, take every word of the Bible as gospel? For instance – Cain killed Abel and was banished to another town. Where did this “town” come from so soon? See? Or, if Adam and Eve were the first man and woman then like Archie Bunker once said, I don’t want them spreading incense all over the place – or something like that.

  • Tina S

    The second thought is that the creation story is from the part of the Bible that is common to all three of the world’s major religions. But, for some reason, it’s only the conservative Christians who get asked about their beliefs — I’d be vaguely interested in hearing, say, Senator Feinstein (Jewish) or Representative Ellison (Muslim) address their opinions of the Genesis story.

    If a political candidate holds fund raisers with groups that have made it a political cause to remove evolution from public schools, than it is reasonable to ask the candidate to clarify there position on evolution in schools. I don’t think Senator Feinstein (Jewish) or Representative Ellison (Muslim) have attended such fundraisers.

  • WildWillie

    James H., I think running/winning a Mayoral race and serving and then running for governor of your state and winning does not make her a “celebrity”. Palin may be now appearing on talk news show and such but she is first and foremost a politician. I have no idea how you came to that conclusion. In fact it surprises me. ww

  • James H

    WW: My assessment is based on her current status, not her past status. I don’t think she’s a celebrity in the vein of Tom Cruise, Paris Hilton, or Charlie Sheen, but more in the vein of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, or even Mike Huckabee (though they seem more commentator than celebrity, honestly). Not merely her political chops, but also her uncanny ability to command attention across media platforms gives her, IMO, the status of celebrity.

    Because she’s not a politician, she’s also not entirely accountable to voters for her remarks. If Palin says that Americans should paint themselves blue and eat smurfberries, there’s no consequence. If Christie says the same thing, he has to justify it in the budget and face the voters at the ballot box.

  • James H

    WW: Also note I didn’t call Palin a celebrity in the firs tplace; I called her “a combinatin entertainer, media personality, and pundit.”

  • Tina S

    I think running/winning a Mayoral race and serving and then running for governor of your state and winning does not make her a “celebrity”

    Having your own reality TV show does.

  • http://wizbangblog.com Jay Tea

    Crap, James knows about the Smurfberry plot.

    He must be eliminated.

    J.

  • Tina S

    One of their favorite tactics of late has been to impose a de facto religious test on public figures. “Oh, you’re a Christian? So, you believe that the Bible is the word of God? Which means you believe in the creation story, and reject evolution and Darwinism?”

    Although I consider it acceptable to ask a candidates political position on teaching creationism in schools, if a reporter questioned a politician using “Oh, you’re a Christian? So, you believe that…” it would be offensive.

  • SCSIwuzzy

    If the only people questioned are Christians, that is a distinction without difference.
    As for reality show… I saw the Palin show more as a travelogue (like another Palin’s Around the World in 80 Days) than a reality show.