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Tilting at Windmills

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January 11, 2010

UNEMPLOYED HALF-TERM GOVERNOR HIRED BY FOX NEWS.... Sarah Palin inexplicably walked away from her job last year, quitting as Alaska's governor half-way through her first term. It presented a minor problem for the often-confused right-wing politician -- what, exactly, would she do with herself between her resignation and her presidential campaign?

Sure, posting stuff to Facebook can be fun, but it's generally not the stuff of national leaders. She would need some kind of job to occupy her time for the next few years. She could consider academia, and pursue a teaching gig, but I think most fair observers would agree this isn't especially realistic given her ... shall we say ... skill set. Palin could go to a conservative think tank, writing and researching areas of public policy that are of particular interest, but that would probably necessitate some kind of intellectual curiosity.

What to do, what to do. Here's a thought: how about Palin joining the Fox News Channel as an on-air contributor?

The network confirmed that Ms. Palin will appear on the network's programming on a regular basis as part of a multi-year deal. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Ms. Palin will not have her own regular program, one person familiar with the deal said, though she will host an occasional series that will run on the network from time to time. This person would not elaborate, but the network does have a precedent for such a series. Oliver L. North is the host of an occasionally running documentary series on the military called "War Stories."

Many suspected that when Ms. Palin retired as the governor of Alaska last summer she was doing so to pursue some sort of career in television. The Fox News deal, however, would not seem to be all encompassing, and would appear to give her room for other pursuits, as well.

If you pass by Fox News HQ, you can probably hear Mike Huckabee sobbing just a little, saying, "Wait, I'm the one who's supposed to use Fox News as a platform to launch a far-right presidential campaign."

Palin's deal makes considerable sense. It's awful for the public discourse, but it's great for the relevant players -- Palin wants money and a platform; the Republican network wants a politician its partisan audience loves. It's a match made in ... well, somewhere unpleasant.

In some ways, the former half-term governor's new role will be exceedingly similar to the one she's maintained since leaving office. Instead of sharing her fact-free "thoughts" on a social-networking website, Palin can share her ideas on a cable network without any pushback at all. Getting back to a very sharp post Dave Weigel wrote a few weeks ago, this new role gives Palin a chance to inject her beliefs into the public debate without actually engaging in the public debate.

In other words, both Facebook-contributor Palin and Fox News-contributor Palin will receive the same treatment and have the same opportunity. Either way, she won't be subjecting herself to questions or scrutiny that might make her uncomfortable. The big differences are a larger audience and a bigger paycheck. The only remaining question is what took so long to complete this obvious deal.

Steve Benen 1:45 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (60)

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Comments

Stupid talks while stupid listens. Plus she's live on the screen. Imagine the DNA all over the floors and walls of the Fox male fan base.

Posted by: Paranoid Floyd on January 11, 2010 at 1:52 PM | PERMALINK

The only remaining question is what took so long to complete this obvious deal.

Dickering over the price.

Posted by: MichMan on January 11, 2010 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

Palin could go to a conservative think tank, writing and researching areas of public policy that are of particular interest, but that would probably necessitate some kind of intellectual curiosity

it would also necessitate doing actual research work and writing, for which she doesnt seem to have the capability, either.

Posted by: g on January 11, 2010 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

In what other country in the World do you think stupid garbage like Sara Palin, Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh, and the rest of these types of pigs could be paid millions of dollars and turned into cult like figures ? Try to name one other .......

That is exactly why your country not only sucks, but is a DISGRACE to the rest of the planet ......

Posted by: blue on January 11, 2010 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

Rwanda pops into mind , Uganda . Stupidity and meanness despite America's exceptionalism , is not hard to find off the mammoth hubris of wurlitzer fox .

Posted by: FRP on January 11, 2010 at 2:08 PM | PERMALINK

When Palin resigned as governor, Levi Johnson told anyone who'd listen that her sole motivation was to make a pile of money. Fox News reported that charge here:

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/elections/2009/07/09/levi-johnston-palins-resignation-personal-finances/?test=latestnews

Palin's spokesperson made this response to Levi's scurrilous charge:

"It is interesting to learn Levi is working on a piece of fiction while honing his acting skills," Palin family spokeswoman Meghan Stapleton said in an e-mail to The Associated Press."

Now Fox is helping turn Levi's 'piece of fiction' into reality. Levi looks more astute by the day.

PS: And let's not forget how she blew off the CPAC conference, but signed on to the Tea Party conference for $100K: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/07/palin-tea-party-speech-ne_n_414965.html

Posted by: WSP on January 11, 2010 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

My other thought about this is - even if the interviewer or host is enabling his own biases, the host still has to allow the guest to be the main focus.

Frankly, I can't see Palin being very good at interviewing someone else. How could she possibly want to shift attention off herself?

Posted by: g on January 11, 2010 at 2:10 PM | PERMALINK

Ho Chi Min says: "Getting your butt shot over Hanoi can create long tail."

God, our recklessness as a country of reckless people just snowballs and snowballs. Someday, whenever these dice stop rolling we are gonna have a real mess, but guess this will do until then. No Country for Thinking People

Posted by: lou on January 11, 2010 at 2:11 PM | PERMALINK

Over at DailyKos I saw some great comments, trying to find the exact link so credit can go to proper; (If I annoy by bringing up since note mine, I apologize..but too funny.)

1) If she moves to East Coast to do the show, she will be able to see France from her porce

2) She was offered a regular, weekly one-hour show but she kept on inisting on having it end after 20 minutes!

Kudos to those commentators!

Posted by: sduffys on January 11, 2010 at 2:11 PM | PERMALINK

Sullivan's gonna need more staff.

Posted by: Snarky Bastard on January 11, 2010 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

She's not going to use it to "launch" a campaign for President. Do you really think she would do the work the other candidates are going to do over the next two year or so? Raise money? Hit the road soon after the 2010 elections? Participate in the 21 debates held between May 2011 and February 2012 (if the '08 schedule holds)? Please. No, what this does is give her a platform, and have her out there, if and when the Republicans fail to anoint a frontrunner. Face it, a year from now, when the 2012 primary starts in earnest (and given that the Dems won't be having one, it will get lots of coverage), no one will be waiting for Palin Facebook postings. But if she is on Fox, it will be like she is running without having to do any of the actual work.

Posted by: John Dillinger on January 11, 2010 at 2:13 PM | PERMALINK

...palling around with media elites?

Posted by: eddel80 on January 11, 2010 at 2:15 PM | PERMALINK

Steve Benen @ Top:

In other words, both Facebook-contributor Palin and Fox News-contributor Palin will receive the same treatment and have the same opportunity.

Much larger opportunity, really, at least to the extent that Fox's audience is larger than Palin's Facebook audience.

.

Posted by: JGabriel on January 11, 2010 at 2:17 PM | PERMALINK

Talk about moving into a ghetto...Sheesh!

Posted by: Sean Scallon on January 11, 2010 at 2:18 PM | PERMALINK

Is she going to bring the kids on air with her?

Posted by: g on January 11, 2010 at 2:25 PM | PERMALINK

Palin doesn't want to be president. She wants to be Rush Limbaugh. The president doesn't make hundreds of millions of dollars a year. And the president doesn't have the influence over the national conversation that Rush does. What are her qualifications for the job? Same as El Rushbo's: she's a greedy, narcissistic sociopath. And she'll be the face of America, boys and girls.

Posted by: dalloway on January 11, 2010 at 2:28 PM | PERMALINK

She is light skinned....

And barely speaks with a negro dialect....

Posted by: orwell on January 11, 2010 at 2:31 PM | PERMALINK

The serious good news for America is that, as John Dillinger noted above, Sarah Palin isn't interested in working hard enough to be elected president or even nominated by the GOP. She'll make nice noises in 2011 and do some speeches, but then she'll go back to Fox (if she hasn't quit).

No one in the GOP is going to hand her the nomination on the platter because there just aren't enough folks in the GOP willing to commit political suicide by being led by someone even lazier and less well-informed than W.

Posted by: freelunch on January 11, 2010 at 2:33 PM | PERMALINK

$10K here, $10K there, the right-wing always seems to have a pile of money for this sort of nonsense. Maybe that's why they are always whining about tax cuts---gotta keep funding the clowns.

Posted by: -syzygy- on January 11, 2010 at 2:35 PM | PERMALINK

There are lots of people who are unemployed right now and it's nothing to be ashamed of. Unlike most, however, chose to be unemployed by leaving a job that was rewarding, important, well paid, and one that she had sought eagerly.

Posted by: smintheus on January 11, 2010 at 2:35 PM | PERMALINK

She doesn't want to be Rush Limbaugh, either, she wants his followers and money without any more work than doing Facebook posts. She's a lazy, greedy, narcissistic sociopath. Limbaugh is odious, but he's put in a lot of work building up that audience of authoritarian dittoheads.

That's what I find amusing about the Fox deal -- the whole "occasional" aspect of it. It probably took this long for Fox to figure out a format where their promotional work wouldn't be wasted by Palin deciding it was too much work and bailing (and then trying to poison her followers against Fox in order to escape any blame.)

Posted by: Redshift on January 11, 2010 at 2:38 PM | PERMALINK

This will certainly keep Faux Snooze's ratings up -- EVERYONE will be tuning in to see what hilariously or frighteningly inappropriate spin the Talibunny comes up with.

Posted by: karen marie on January 11, 2010 at 2:40 PM | PERMALINK

I really doubt Palin wants to go through another humiliating round of 'vetting' and 'gotcha' interviews for a job that actually requires work, while getting paid a tenth of what she is making now.

I am not concerned about her running, because even if she does, she won't win. What I am concerned with is her influence in selecting the 2012 GOP candidates. Would she even back McCain if he were to run ? The GOP candidate is going to have to be a TeaBagger that Rush, Glen, and Sarah approve of. In other words, and lunatic.

Posted by: ScottW on January 11, 2010 at 2:41 PM | PERMALINK

Ms. Palin will not have her own regular program, one person familiar with the deal said, though she will host an occasional series that will run on the network from time to time.

Seems like a good fit for the Quitta from Wasilla's work ethic.

Posted by: Gregory on January 11, 2010 at 2:49 PM | PERMALINK

This is great, great news.

1. Once she gets a taste of that sweet, sweet Murdoch kool-aid, she's done as a politician. That shit is way too much work, as she's already demonstrated.

2. Comedy Gold! Seriously - Jon Stewart just plotzed.

Posted by: Cazart on January 11, 2010 at 2:59 PM | PERMALINK

I'm sure everyone will be rushing to pay for her content.

Just another reason not to watch Fox.

Posted by: consumetheconsumer on January 11, 2010 at 3:08 PM | PERMALINK

You guys are so full of hate

Teach us how to love, Big O. Go on. We're listening.

Posted by: Alex on January 11, 2010 at 3:12 PM | PERMALINK

I knew this was Palin's role - be exactly like these commentators that have so much influence that they can make politicians apologize to them. Get lots of money, get to say whatever you want, have no accountability and revered as a "leader" of conservative ideals. It's amazing it took so long for her to have this role and probably money was the factor.

What's sad is that these commentators have no intelligence, unrealistic views and go apoplectic over EVERYTHING which then becomes the subject of discourse of the MSM whether or not it's relevant. I knew this when Palin's Facebook entries or Tweets were "news". Pathetic. The news media is now just stenographers and transcribers even when said by complete political failures.

As a person that is conscientious, it's a really hard tide to constantly fight against. Even on this conscientious blog and others, I feel like all I see is the muck and the mud and none of the plants that have potential to grow - just boot prints on those seeds of actions (healthcare!). I'm not optomistic and have now become quite apathetic about American politics.

Posted by: Elsie on January 11, 2010 at 3:22 PM | PERMALINK

...palling around with media elites?

Or becoming one of them. In a limited, low-level way, of course, but maybe enough to buy her a teensy bit of insulation, given how loath the media are to criticize one of their own...

Posted by: Doozer on January 11, 2010 at 3:22 PM | PERMALINK

On the positive side, finally she gets a job for which she theoretically has the appropriate credentials. (/snark)

Posted by: N.Wells on January 11, 2010 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

Better a half-term governor on FOX news than a half-term senator in the White House.

Oh, wait.

Posted by: Olliander on January 11, 2010 at 3:25 PM | PERMALINK

Look who's come home to roost! -Kevo

Posted by: kevo on January 11, 2010 at 3:26 PM | PERMALINK

I hope John McCain is proud of himself. And I look forward to Palin's first interview of him.

Hahahahahaha.

Hahahahahahahaha.

Hahahahahahahahaahahahahahahaha.

Posted by: karen marie on January 11, 2010 at 3:38 PM | PERMALINK

This seems to be a natural course of evolution.

Now we will be Palined on a regular basis.

The Fox sponsors are probably frothing at the mouth right now, scrambling over each other to get a spot during Sarah's time on the air.

You betcha!

Posted by: Tom Nicholson on January 11, 2010 at 3:39 PM | PERMALINK

I was laughing so hard I almost forgot -- Talibunny's second interview should be with her BFF Lieberman who had this to say about Caribou Barbie back in October 2008:

"She’s had executive experience. She’s smart. And she will have had on-the-job training.”
Posted by: karen marie on January 11, 2010 at 3:41 PM | PERMALINK

OMG! Apparently Talibunny is more than just on-air "talent" -- she's management!

Hahahahahaha.

Hahahahahahahahahahahaha.

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha.

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2010/01/11/2010-01-11_sarah_palin_joins_fox_news_as_a_contributor_in_multiyear_deal.html#ixzz0cL1aVXMp

Posted by: karen marie on January 11, 2010 at 3:53 PM | PERMALINK

Nothing about this suggests that Palin will be on Fox talking extemporaneously. She just might be narrating a series, like Oliver North, with scripted narration.

Too bad.

Posted by: K Ashford on January 11, 2010 at 4:05 PM | PERMALINK

I know this is good news for Republicans, but it can hardly be good news for Beck, Hannity and O'Reilly.

To paraphrase karen marie . . .

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha.

Posted by: Squeaky McCrinkle on January 11, 2010 at 4:07 PM | PERMALINK

This will be fun for a while, but no matter how tightly scripted they try to make the show, her native genius for stupidity will eventually show through often enough for even the most deluded followers to realize, "Hey, she really is a moron, isn't she?"

Well, maybe not the *most* deluded followers. There's still all that free-floating DNA to consider, as Paranoid Floyd mentioned at the top.

Still, the title of "Boner Shrinker" is not far from her grasp even as we speak. I'll be in my bunk.

Posted by: Curmudgeon on January 11, 2010 at 4:07 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe she could get a job on 30 Rock as a Liz Lemon impersonator. That'd fit her skill set.

Posted by: josef on January 11, 2010 at 4:08 PM | PERMALINK

Damn! One of the predictions I made on 1/1/2009 for the last year. Missed it by that much.

Actually, she's still not found her special niche. She should be in a sitcom...

... about a goofy downhome governor. The writers could bring some coherence to her story and make her a much more sympathetic figure. She'd shine the only way she knows how. Her homeys could love her for her actual accomplishments and not the ones of feverish imagination. The rest of us would continue to watch 30-Rock, or paint dry. Everybody wins.

Posted by: dennisS on January 11, 2010 at 4:17 PM | PERMALINK

Better a half-term governor on FOX news than a half-term senator in the White House.

Wow - looks like you're straining to make some kind of point or other, but can't elaborate without looking like a complete moron.

Posted by: DH Walker on January 11, 2010 at 4:32 PM | PERMALINK

It wouldn't be Monday if Benen's pie-hole wasn't flappin' with the same old tired cliche-ridden crap.

Posted by: RH Potfry on January 11, 2010 at 4:46 PM | PERMALINK

The most interesting comment is that she probably won't be doing any extemporaneous programming but instead will just narrate shows. This will keep her from looking like the incurious knucklehead that she is. But this Fox gig does go a long way in confirming to some uncertain independent voters that she is in fact in the Fox News category of angry white people. While many Americans are taken by her smile and assertive "pro American" rhetoric and think she has legit credentials for being a governor, connecting herself to Hannity and O'Reilly pidgeon holes her to a lot of people who are moderate and don't buy the angry white guy routine.

Posted by: Wally Sandaber on January 11, 2010 at 4:59 PM | PERMALINK

"Much larger opportunity, really, at least to the extent that Fox's audience is larger than Palin's Facebook audience."

Is it? Facebook is global after all.

Posted by: Whispers on January 11, 2010 at 5:21 PM | PERMALINK

"even if the interviewer or host is enabling his own biases, the host still has to allow the guest to be the main focus"

Not if she doesn't have any guests. I see her more in a Beck-type solo performance of rantin' and ravein' also.

I'm already popping popcorn, but only enough for about 15 minutes of watchin'

Posted by: Sarah Barracuda on January 11, 2010 at 5:28 PM | PERMALINK

Wait, that's FOX NEWS? I thought she was going to be on just regular FOX as a frequent guest on the Simpsons.

Posted by: kurt on January 11, 2010 at 6:01 PM | PERMALINK

Let's see what dumb, ignorant, hick, wasilla hillbilly (and all the other demeaning adjectives used to describe Gov. Palin) has accomplished in only ONE-HALF YEAR:

Wrote No. 1 best seller (6 wks on NYT #1 slot)
(7 wks on WSJ #l slot)
(oh yes, took her 4 long weeks to write it)
Publisher printed 2.8 million copies of Going Rogue
Was No. 1 at Barnes & Nobles and Amazon prior to release.
Made several speeches for high $$$$$, nationally and internationally.

Gov. Palin is GOING to the bank and LAUGHING all the way. How much would you assume she made in 6 months---could be between $3 to $10 mil.,(my guess)

NOW, all of you intelligent/non-intelligent, articulate and not so articulate, educated/non-educated morons, how much have you made in SIX MONTHS? Oh yes, thought so. Keep up your tirades and keep those dollars coming. GOV. PALIN is certainly getting the last laugh, isn't she.

Posted by: fb on January 11, 2010 at 6:10 PM | PERMALINK

This is going to be awesome. It's going to end badly no matter what happens. Fox is so cool. It's like Hard Copy only bigger.

Posted by: Paul in County on January 11, 2010 at 6:12 PM | PERMALINK

fb, you know what a ghostwriter is, don't you?

Sarah's trading off of her looks and that convention speech, plus the fact that she pisses off liberals (the most important qualification for wingnut love). My guess is she won't last long at Fox; she's never stuck with a steady gig in her life, and she's lazy as well as stupid. If half of Schmitt's stories are true, Roger Ailes may be regretting this before summer.

Posted by: jimBOB on January 11, 2010 at 6:22 PM | PERMALINK

fb,

Hilarious. What a hard working American role model. She done made it all by herself, huh? No respect, sniff.

No one is debating whether she's getting rich. Or whether she's been successful milking her 15 minutes. We're just saying she's dumb like a stapler.

Posted by: Paul in County on January 11, 2010 at 6:30 PM | PERMALINK

I predict she'll act like a diva, piss off a bunch of people at Fox, and in due time, leave to spend more time with her family.

Posted by: kc on January 11, 2010 at 6:54 PM | PERMALINK

High-ranking drug dealers and the Outfit, just for a couple of examples, also make a large amount of money in a short period. One assumes that fb holds them in the same high esteem he holds Palin. After all, money's the only measure of competence and virtue, isn't it?

Posted by: Alex on January 11, 2010 at 6:55 PM | PERMALINK

Has Fox been satire all this time and We, the People just haven't gotten the joke?

And here I thought to be a Republican you had to love God, Country, Family, and have patriotic stickers on your gas-hog. Now it appears that every one of these takes a back seat to Liberal-Hating, including the stickers!

Dang ma hide!

Posted by: Joe Durt on January 11, 2010 at 7:03 PM | PERMALINK

Why do wingnuts laugh at liberals regarding Palin getting rich? She's not getting the money from libs.

Posted by: John Dillinger on January 11, 2010 at 7:47 PM | PERMALINK

sduffys touched on it earlier, and others are hitting all around it - if Ms. Palin confines her occasional forays into over-publicized nonsense via Twitter and her Facebook site, they probably won't get too much notice outside progressive blogs and her rabid followers. If, however, she makes a move to televised self-promoting, she will again be the butt of jokes by Jon Stewart and Tina Fey as well as others. She doesn't stand up well to widespread prime-time ridicule, which is kind of a shame since she is such a prolific provider of material.

Posted by: Mark on January 11, 2010 at 8:36 PM | PERMALINK

I just have to believe that this has been the penultimate goal for Palin all along. Even she has to understand that being president is WAY too much work for her (even when W was president).

The real question is how whether she can parlay her perceived folksy sex appeal to the drooling Fox minions into the fortune of her dreams.

Posted by: bdop4 on January 11, 2010 at 8:40 PM | PERMALINK

I purely love it when a left-liberal reveals his lack of comprehension in print and / or pixels. It's especially tasty when he does it in his lede line.

Congratulations on your no doubt unintended self-disclosure, Mr. Benen.

Posted by: Francis W. Porretto on January 12, 2010 at 4:59 AM | PERMALINK

blue,
What Utopian country do you live in? I can think of plenty of examples of less then exemplary leaders of other countries. Berlusconi of Italy comes to mind.


Posted by: DR on January 12, 2010 at 10:55 AM | PERMALINK

At Last a Male Strippers List Directory that on the actual exotic dancers change from the usual spam one normally finds in the adult entertainment business.

Posted by: DuantAcunda on December 23, 2010 at 9:15 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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