September 10, 2008

1 Puppet Master; 1 Cut Out; 1 Repeat-After-Me; 4 Teleprompters (And More Than A Dash Of Schwarzenegger)


Palin Schmidt

I feel I’m just waking up from a 10-day-long hallucination … and, I suddenly have no idea why I went to the trouble of scanning that Newsweek "Palentology" cover.   (Right, no link.)

Let David Gergen compare the Alaska Gov to Harry Truman as she finishes her homecoming speech in Fairbanks.  For my money, the key element in the picture were the 2 teleprompters — and the script, the script, the script.  (I’ll probably get some emails for this, but I didn’t even think they had teleprompters up there.) 

So, where to (re-)start? 

I say we go to the source, to Steve Schmidt — or, Karl Rove with a (more) sadistic streak.  Although it was mostly on the q.t., Schmidt himself accompanied Palin to Alaska for high-level hand-holding — which makes sense, considering she’s "The Franchise."  (By the way, you did see what happened to Mac this afternoon once he was left to his lonesome?  No, it wasn’t pretty.)

Anyway, the photo above wasn’t taken last night or yesterday.  It was taken back on the 31st just before this.  What’s salient about it, however, is how it reveals the puppet master, the great and powerful Oz behind the GOP smoke-and-mirror show.  Shades of Professor Higgins (or, the roll-out of Schwarzenegger, including the crash time frame, the celebrity angle and the press choke-hold).   And, variations on a theme, how clever was it to capture Steve on the campaign plane with this cut-out of his older creation.  In my mind, at least, the curtain only adds to the Oz effect.  And then, I leave the snapshots to your speculation.

Am I a little wired tonight?  It’s probably from straying beyond the newswire stills and actually catching two nights of cable news. Or maybe, hopefully, it’s a Palin rebound.  Meanwhile, check out the captions on both of these pics:

(image 1: Mary Altaffer/AP.  caption:  With a cutout of Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz. at left, McCain adviser Steve Schmidt comes to the back of the airplane to speak to reporters on board the Straight Talk Air campaign charter airplane, Monday, Aug. 25, 2008.  image 2: Charles Rex Arbogast/A.P. caption: Republican vice presidential candidate Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, sits in her vehicle with an unidentified man after arriving on a chartered plane with Cindy McCain, wife of Republican presidential candidate Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., for the Republican National Convention at the Minneapolis International Airport in Bloomington, Minn., Sunday, Aug. 31, 2008)

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Michael Shaw
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