Friday, September 12, 2008

Gibson's Interview Of Palin

I'm looking forward to watching ABC's Charlie Gibson's interview with Sarah Palin tonight. Much of the interview has already been uploaded to the Internet and pundits on the left and right are already weighing in with their critiques. The focus of the debate seems centered on these issues: (a) does Palin come off as a war monger because of her hard line position on Russia; (b) does Palin know what the Bush Doctrine is; (c) is Palin unprepared because she hasn't traveled abroad much and met with any other heads of state; and (d) is Palin a religious zealot who will act impulsively based upon Biblical prophecy.

The debate over Russia centers around Russia's recent intrusions into Georgia. For the record, Obama is on record as saying he supports admitting Georgia into NATO as proposed by the Bush Administration. Many on the left quickly pounced on Palin's comments about defending Georgia against Russia. Palin quickly points out the defense obligations NATO member countries have to one another in the event one of them is invaded by an enemy force. You can't have it both ways. You can't say you want Georgia as a NATO member if you are unwilling to help it defend its sovereign status. Palin astutely answered Gibson's question on this subject.

On the issue of the Bush Doctrine, does anyone really know what the Bush Doctrine is? Clearly, Obama did not understand the Bush Doctrine to mean what Gibson interprets it to mean. Gibson sees it as a willingness to pre-emptively go to war to combat a perceived threat. Last year, when Obama criticized Sen. Hillary Clinton's support of the Bush Doctrine, he interpreted it to mean "only speaking to leaders of rogue nations if they first meet conditions laid out by the United States." By Gibson's definition, Obama got it completely wrong. He made matters worse by saying he was willing to meet with "leader of rogue nations" without any pre-conditions. He got even goofier when forced to defend that position by suggesting that we shouldn't be so concerned about "tiny countries" like Iran. Palin saw it is as "Bush's worldview" of the necessity of confronting Islamic extremist terrorists where they exist. Perhaps not a precise answer, but a damn sight closer than the completely off-base answer Obama spouted off last year with much fanfare.

Charlies Gibson traveled this summer with Sen. Barack Obama on his world tour and was given several interview opportunities with Obama throughout that tour. His interviews consisted of very softball questions and played up the "historic nature" of Obama's trip, bolstering his perceived weak foreign policy credentials. Gibson's zeroing in on the fact that Palin had never met with a foreign head of state and had only visited Kuwait and Germany as part of her duties as Alaska's Commander in Chief of the Alaskan National Guard. The truth is that Obama, despite chairing a subcommittee with jurisdiction over European Affairs which has yet to hold a meeting, had little experience in this regard until his widely publicized trip this summer. Arguably, the trip was more show for his presidential campaign than substance. Obama met with leaders of Afghanistan, France, Germany, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Palestine and the U.K. Some argue that he completely stepped over the line and appeared to be conducting foreign policy with foreign heads of state in usurpation of President Bush's authority and in violation of the Logan Act. I thought Palin's emphasis of her strength on energy policy and its vital importance to national security was an astute response to Gibson's obvious put-down of her experience.

Like most liberal journalists, Gibson is easy to find extremism whenever the word "God" is mentioned by a conservative Republican. He was singing to the Daily Kos crowd when he took her to task for a prayer she offered to our troops fighting in Iraq. Palin's prayer "that there is a plan" and to pray "that that plan is God's plan." Palin correctly pointed out that Gibson incorrectly quoted what she said to make it appear she said something she hadn't. Palin made it clear that she wasn't trying to suggest that the U.S. was on God's side. Reminding Gibson of what Lincoln said in a time of war--to pray that the country was on God's side. I thought her response was spot on. The lefties are already dissecting her words and trying to make something out of this that is simply not there. In so doing, they simply further offend people of faith. It is hypocritical for these people to twist her words while giving Obama a complete pass on his use of overt religious symbols in his campaign and messianic aura his campaign has craftily attempted to create for his candidacy.

As much hype as the Left is trying to make out of Palin's interview, the fact is they are still left scrambling to rescue Obama from his free fall in the polls. I would urge you to go watch Gibson's interview with Obama and compare it to Palin's. He came off as openly hostile to Palin, which was quite obvious in the tone of her answers to him. I think that was his plan. He wanted to make her look like a shouting housewife who didn't have a clue what she was talking about. Contrast that to his frat boy like approach to his interview with Obama. If the people on the Left think they are going to defeat Sen. McCain by trashing Gov. Palin, I think they're barking up the wrong tree. But I'm more than happy to extend all the rope they need in that direction if that's the route they wish to continue to follow.


Covenant60 said...

Palin knew more about it than Gibson does. In fact, Gibson knows very little insofar as he thinks there is only one.

Palin recognized that there are several (four) incarnations of a "Bush Doctrine". She thought he meant the one that seeks to expand democracy in the Middle East as a way to combat Islamic radicalism.

Gibson thinks that the Bush doctrine only consists of the stated US policy to not wait till a terrorist danger manifests itself on American soil.... and that such a gathering threat will be attacked pre-emptively before it can harm Americans.

He has nothing on Sarah Palin, who is clearly his superior on this subject.

Downtown Indy said...

If AIP embodies Palin's views on government because she attended their convention, then Kanye West must embody Obama's views on the Constitution because he attended the Democratic Convention.

Shofar said...

From Charles Krauthammer,

"Ms. Palin most visibly stumbled when she was asked by Mr. Gibson if she agreed with the Bush doctrine. Ms. Palin did not seem to know what he was talking about. Mr. Gibson, sounding like an impatient teacher, informed her that it meant the right of `anticipatory self-defense.'" -- New York Times, Sept. 12

WASHINGTON -- Informed her? Rubbish.

The Times got it wrong. And Charlie Gibson got it wrong.

There is no single meaning of the Bush doctrine. In fact, there have been four distinct meanings, each one succeeding another over the eight years of this administration -- and the one Charlie Gibson cited is not the one in common usage today.

He asked Palin, "Do you agree with the Bush doctrine?"

She responded, quite sensibly to a question that is ambiguous, "In what respect, Charlie?"

Sensing his "gotcha" moment, Gibson refused to tell her. After making her fish for the answer, he grudgingly explained to the moose-hunting rube that the Bush doctrine "is that we have the right of anticipatory self-defense.


I know something about the subject because, as the Wikipedia entry on the Bush doctrine notes, I was the first to use the term."

The Palin attacks are getting so obvious as to be laughable. The disingenuous of the Bo campaign in how they are dealing with Palin slaps every thinking person in America right in the face.

Obama was interviewed on the Russ Parr show the other day, and was asked about the attacks on Palin. His reply was that he was not running against her. Yet his surrogates in the media attack and attack. BO and his team are not only taking pages from the Alinsky play book, but also from the "Boss" Richard J. Daley, late mayor of Chicago.

bobisimo said...

I agree with you that he went way harder on Palin than Obama. Unfortunately for Palin, he succeeded. She didn't do very well. :\ She struggled with questions. She flopped on the global warming issue. It seemed like he was tricking her into making comments contrary to McCain policy, but she was falling for it. Still, this is way early. It's just an interview (with an occasionally-attacking journalist). Her first interview, at that. It's funny, but I don't think it knocks her capabilities at all.

LA Sunset said...

//I agree with you that he went way harder on Palin than Obama.//

You must have missed the part where Gibson grilled Obama on his Jerusalem flip-flop and I thought Obama responded quite awkwardly to the challenge.

If we are going to challenge Gibson, it cannot be on partiality, but the substance of his questions, as the Krauthammer essay points out.

artfuggins said...

the nerve of Gibson asking questions about foreign policy to Palin just because she is running for vice president...

M Theory said...

She came off as Libertarian in the ABC interview. She also came off as confident and I think Sarah Barracuda smoked him!

And regarding the abortion issue, even the libertarians don't agree on that one.

Shofar said...


Gibson has a right and a responsibility to ask her about foreign policy. He also has a responsibility as a journalist (snicker, snicker) to make sure he is reporting facts not conjecture.

From the Society of Professional Journalists web site, Code of Ethics

Journalists should:

— Test the accuracy of information from all sources and exercise care to avoid inadvertent error. Deliberate distortion is never permissible.
— Diligently seek out subjects of news stories to give them the opportunity to respond to allegations of wrongdoing.
— Identify sources whenever feasible. The public is entitled to as much information as possible on sources' reliability.
— Always question sources’ motives before promising anonymity. Clarify conditions attached to any promise made in exchange for information. Keep promises.
— Make certain that headlines, news teases and promotional material, photos, video, audio, graphics, sound bites and quotations do not misrepresent. They should not oversimplify or highlight incidents out of context.
— Never distort the content of news photos or video. Image enhancement for technical clarity is always permissible. Label montages and photo illustrations.
— Avoid misleading re-enactments or staged news events. If re-enactment is necessary to tell a story, label it.
— Avoid undercover or other surreptitious methods of gathering information except when traditional open methods will not yield information vital to the public. Use of such methods should be explained as part of the story
- Never plagiarize.
— Tell the story of the diversity and magnitude of the human experience boldly, even when it is unpopular to do so.
Examine their own cultural values and avoid imposing those values on others.
— Avoid stereotyping by race, gender, age, religion, ethnicity, geography, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance or social status.
— Support the open exchange of views, even views they find repugnant.
— Give voice to the voiceless; official and unofficial sources of information can be equally valid.
Distinguish between advocacy and news reporting. Analysis and commentary should be labeled and not misrepresent fact or context.
— Distinguish news from advertising and shun hybrids that blur the lines between the two.
— Recognize a special obligation to ensure that the public's business is conducted in the open and that government records are open to inspection.
(emphasis added)

Gibson and the majority of the MSM have shown a clear bias towards BO, and are therefore in violation of their own Code of Ethics. That is why so much of the MSM is dying out and alternative media is thriving. According to ( there have been approx. 30,000 layoffs in the MSM since 2000. And don't say this is the fault of Bush economics, it is the fault of too many extremist getting a hold of pen and paper, and the majority of Americans cannot stomach the bias.