Her beliefs are polarizing, to say the least. She has a way of creating enemies, and governs in a very personal manner. I think part of her charm is that she is cute and pretty, and leads what many consider to be an incredible life. I think many women wish they could pull off something like that; they ignore the warning signs, they ignore the pregnancy, her spurious background. She’s approachable, and that feeling wins out.
Luckily, her utter unpreparedness for a national campaign is finally becoming clear, and it’s become increasingly apparent that John McCain has made a terrible mistake by selecting her as his running mate, exacerbating the decision by following it up with the genius idea of shielding her from the press.
The media likes access; the media likes answers. They do not like rebuffs, refusals, or rejections. The media’s job is to get stories out to the public, and when people make their jobs difficult, they are not happy. The media can be your friend, and they are big on relationships—they can make or break you, so treat them well. Sarah Palin was a public figure before she became a vice-presidential candidate; she’s had experience interacting with the media, just on a smaller scale. For god’s sake, her degree is in journalism!
There’s a difference between demurring for privacy’s sake and outright refusing to answer questions because you have no answers. The only reason not to let the press talk to her was because they were hiding something—which is so completely obvious that it’s totally backfiring on the campaign.
Obama, on the other hand, was snubbing Murdoch. Every time he reached out (Murdoch executives tried to get the Kennedys to help smooth the way to an introduction), nothing. The Fox stain was on Murdoch.
It wasn’t until early in the summer that Obama relented and a secret courtesy meeting was arranged. The meeting began with Murdoch sitting down, knee to knee with Obama, at the Waldorf-Astoria. The younger man was deferential—and interested in his story. Obama pursued: What was Murdoch’s relationship with his father? How had he gotten from
to the top of the world? Adelaide
Murdoch, for his part, had a simple thought to share with Obama. He had known possibly as many heads of state as anyone living today—had met every American president from Harry Truman on—and this is what he understood: nobody got much time to make an impression. Leadership was about what you did in the first six months.
Then, after he said his piece, Murdoch switched places and let his special guest, Roger Ailes, sit knee to knee with Obama.
Obama lit into Ailes. He said that he didn’t want to waste his time talking to Ailes if Fox was just going to continue to abuse him and his wife, that Fox had relentlessly portrayed him as suspicious, foreign, fearsome—just short of a terrorist.
Ailes, unruffled, said it might not have been this way if Obama had more willingly come on the air instead of so often giving Fox the back of his hand.
A tentative truce, which may or may not have vast historical significance, was at that moment agreed upon.