In this post What Exit says that Palin is worse than Quayle. From this side of the Atlantic, I have difficulty understanding the idea. To me, whereas Quayle was at times merely bone-headed, Palin seems merely ignorant. And ignorance, as all Dopers know, can be fought. Granted she started at quite a low level, but she’s come on leaps and bounds. So how exactly is she worse than Quayle? I mean, she’s not had a potatoe (sic) incident yet, has she?
Dan Quayle wasn’t stupid. He is merely given to infelicities. Sarah Palin, by contrast, is clearly incurious, given to massively distorted syntax that make George Bush look like Cicero, and willfully ignorant. Not being able to even name newspapers she reads, for instance; the fact that it didn’t occur to her to lie and say the Times, Post, and Journal bespeaks a head as dense as osmium.
Moving thread from IMHO to Great Debates.
I challenge anyone to think of a person in the history of the United States that has been faced with this much responsibility and has been more unprepared.
Quayle was seen as a mediocre lightweight. But he wasn’t scary. He didn’t have any ethical problems. He wasn’t rabidly right-wing. If he’d wound up as President he probably would have been innocuous and ineffectual, but not actively dangerous.
Palin, on the other hand, already has major ethical problems. The Alaska legislature just released a report saying she abused the power of her office. It’s been well-documented that she’s been lying her ass off on the campaign trail. She hasn’t held a single press conference since McCain picked her, which is unheard of in modern politics. She appears to be shockingly uninformed about most of the major issues of the day. And she’s a hard-right social conservative, putting her well outside the American mainstream.
Which do you think would be worse?
Secretive, unethical fundamentalist or shallow, weak prettyboy?
Matt Cassel, goddamnit!
Plus, Quayle was sort of happy-go-lucky, if on the “wrong” side of a lot of issues. Palin seems to be a creature of monstrously self-centered ambition untroubled by any concern for consequence. Admittedly I haven’t observed her for long, but she reminds me immediately of the Medici popes and the Borgia poisoners, without the sophisticated taste in art and the subtlety.
She is far more arrogant than Quayle.
Quayle was susceptible to spells and potions, as he hadn’t had an authentic witch hunter chant incantations over him.
At least Quayle could speak English.
Also, Bush Sr. wasn’t 72.
If McCain gets elected, pray for his health!
What I find remarkably disturbing with Palin is her inability to answer even the softest of softball questions if it’s not something she’s been taught to say. You can’t intelligently answer a question about what newspapers you read? You can’t answer a question about what Supreme Court decisions you disagreed with, when you went on TV 3 months ago to complain about the Exxon decision, that affected thousands of Alaskans, and probably dozens of people you know personally?
Quayle was a lightweight, but Palin looks like a dullard. I would have expected Quayle to more or less follow the party line, then go away quietly. Palin, as dumb and incurious as she seems to be, doesn’t have the sense to know that she’s out of her league. She would fire staff, hire her buds, and make decisions she’s got no place to make on her own.
It’s telling about Sarah Palin that Quayle seems vastly better. Quayle’s status as joke was earned; he was a ridiculously lightweight choice. And he was STILL vastly superior to Palin.
I was willing to give Palin a chance. When she was first nominated the usual suspects around the SDMB were calling her a “bimbo” and throwing every sexist crack in the book at her. But I thought, no, she doesn’t deserve criticism until we see her performance on the campaign trail and examine her record in detail. Well, now she’s EARNED the scorn. She’s looked and sounded like a fool for a solid month.
I figure Quayle was at least making an attempt to run on his political record. If you asked him a question about a political topic, he might have gotten the answer wrong but at least he would have tried to answer it. Palin seems to feel that she can say nothing about politics and run on her personality. Ask her a question about a political topic (and good luck on that) and she’ll talk about hunting in Alaska or her kids’ hockey games.
I still think Quayle was right about Murphy Brown, but I can’t think of anything Palin has been right about.
I don’t remember Dan Quayle talking about issues. He was extraordinarily prone to gaffes and saying really dumb things. What I can’t remember is if he ever sounded good or if he was perpetually dim. “Lightweight” is fair, but I don’t know if “stupid” is fair.
Still you don’t live down potatoe. And I think Couric was Palin’s potatoe.
Quayle was amusingly stupid. Palin is dangerously stupid. 'Nuff said.
We should have Agnew in the mix. Quayle was a joke but Agnew was seriously bad.
Not the US, but the scale… the Jamaican Bobsled Team.