Posts Tagged ‘Sarah Palin’

Betty, Elon, Tom, Sarah: No, No, No. No!

Saturday, January 15th, 2022

 By Bob Gaydos

People’s prediction.

People’s prediction.

   I was a little preoccupied getting new eyes for Christmas (cataract surgery) so a few items of interest slipped by without comment. When that happens, I like to steal an old Jimmy Cannon trick to give my two cents worth and move on quickly. So …

Maybe it’s just me, but: Putting the smiling face of Betty White on the cover of People magazine in December with the headline “Betty White Turns 100!“ deserves an “F“ in journalism 101. As the world knows, the beloved TV star died in her sleep at age 99, a couple of weeks shy of 100. You’re supposed to report news, not predict future birthdays, People. Especially for 99-year-olds! Putting White on the January cover, too, only helped point out the blunder. It may have something to do with the magazine being sold twice in three years, most recently to a company whose wealth was built by online dating sites. Hey, who needs facts? Someone’s job should be on the line, but in the new “journalism” of the day, I doubt it.

Maybe it’s just me, but: Over at People’s former sister magazine Time (sold, too), Elon Musk “graced” the cover as Person of the Year. Really? “Visionary. Showman. Iconoclast. Troll. Elon Musk is reshaping our world.” That’s how Time described him. OK. Richest man in the world to boot. I guess I’m partial to people who aren’t a pain in the ass and proud of it. I like the Capitol police officer who saved democracy. Eugene Goodman is his name. He got a gold medal for steering Jan. 6 rioters away from the Senate Chambers. There was no more important person in 2021.

Maybe its just me, but: Completing the sweep of fails by former sister magazines, Sports Illustrated chose Tom Brady as Sportsperson of the Year. I get it, he’s supposedly too old to be a pro quarterback, but he’s still winning Super Bowls and sticking it to the Patriots to boot. A living legend. But he’s no Shohei Ohtani. The Japanese superstar channeled Babe Ruth by starring as both pitcher and hitter for the California Angels. The American League MVP led the league in home runs, was an ace starting pitcher with a blazing fast ball. He was the designated hitter when not pitching. He was starting pitcher in the All Star Game and batted lead off. When he was removed from a game as pitcher, he was moved to right field to keep his bat in the game. He was, in effect, the best player on your Little League team now wearing a big league uniform. Baseball hadn’t seen anything like it since, well, the Babe. Last year was Shohei’s. SI, like its former sister mags, got it wrong.

Maybe it’s just me, but: Meryl Streep does an excellent job portraying what a Sarah Palin presidency would be like in the Netflix movie, “Don’t Look Up!” Ditsy, dumb, devoid of common sense and decency. Also deadly. (Watch the movie to find out.) Having escaped her try for the vice presidency, I didn’t think Palin was someone to be concerned about since the Alaskan beauty-queen-turned-governor-turned-reality TV star was supplanted by Trumpsters in the Republican Party. Then I recently overheard a conversation between two past-middle-age, white females, a mother and daughter: Daughter: “Sarah Palin is trying to get back into politics.” Mom: Really?” Daughter: “Yeah, we could use her.” Mom: “Yeah, we could.”  Chills ran up — and down — my spine at this quiet demonstration of generational brain-washing. Don’t look now, America …

  All caught up for now.

rjgaydos@gmail.com

Bob Gaydos is writer-in-residence at zestoforange.com.

 

Sarah Palin’s War on Atheists

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

By Michael Kaufman

It isn’t even Thanksgiving yet and already Sarah Palin is kvetching about the so-called war on Christmas. And she’s not just kvetching. She’s written a whole megillah about it! Her latest book published by HarperCollins and released just in time for the start of the holiday season, is titled Good Tidings and Great Joy: Protecting the Heart of Christmas. As described by Katy Steinmetz of Time magazine, “Many chapters center on made-up tales that illustrate Palin’s concerns, what she calls ‘stories based on reality.’ She bolsters these with related real-world examples.”

Steinmetz summarizes an “imaginative ghost-of-Christmas-future scenario,” in which Grandma Sarah visits grandson Tripp at college in 2028. There she learns that “the school has kicked out all the Christian groups, administrators liken the end of Christmas celebrations to the end of slavery and someone mistakes her for Tina Fey. Also, Mitt Romney finally gets elected on his sixth presidential run.” (Palin may not be the brightest bulb in the chandelier but she does occasionally come up with a good line or two.)

Like fellow buffoon Bill O’Reilly, Palin hates the notion of making the holiday season a bit more inclusive. “A central trope in the book,” says Steinmetz, “is Palin’s disgust and frustration at people saying ‘Happy Holidays’ instead of ‘Merry Christmas.’” She lauds stores such as Hobby Lobby that use Christian religious imagery in advertisements (and by the way also does not stock any Chanukah items even in areas with a substantial Jewish population) and lambastes businesses like Target and Wal-Mart that have opted for a more universal approach.

In many ways, notes Steinmetz, “Christmas is just the occasion for Palin’s book.” Palin complains that Christians are being “reviled and marginalized in American society.” She thinks Christian faith should be more central to culture, politics, schools and public squares. Some chapters, says Steinmetz, “lean heavy on the evangelism,” as Palin recounts Biblical stories and pushes for more “Christ in Christmas.” (Now there’s an idea for a bumper sticker.)

“God,” writes Palin, “is the only cure for what ails us.” This brings to mind one of my favorite cartoons, by Jennifer Berman, titled “God Having an Identity Crisis.” Against a backdrop of the heavens the booming voice of God declares, “Yes, but who created ME?” Besides, Sarah Palin doesn’t know what she’s talking about: I know for a fact and have raised my children to believe that a dip in the ocean will cure whatever ails you.

Palin bemoans the recent increase in the number of people in the United States who openly identify as nonbelievers. She depicts atheists as aggressive and power-hungry, and claims that the logical result of atheism is severe moral decay. And so she proclaims, “We must resist their efforts to push God out of the culture, to characterize us as silly and superstitious.” I don’t quite know how to respond to that. But as an agnostic Jew I try to be respectful of the beliefs (and non-beliefs) of others. I don’t try to push mine on other people and I resent those like Palin, O’Reilly, and others of their ilk who do. And to that list we can now add George W. Bush, former president and war criminal (in the eyes of many) who at this writing is still scheduled to speak at a fundraiser for an evangelical Christian group devoted to getting Jews to “see the light” and convert to their beliefs. To all of them I say “Happy Holidays and Gai mit dein kop in drerd.”

Michael can be reached at michael@zestoforange.com