Free Markets, Free People
In which a blue blood princess gets offended by the term “blue blood” even though she apparently still doesn’t understand the term
For the most part I watch the Sarah Palin sideshow with bemusement and mostly ignore it. Frankly I don’t want her as president but I think she’s good for politics in general because she stirs things up. And lord knows it needs that. I also get a kick out of watching the left obsess over her and in particular watching Andrew Sullivan make a fool of himself.
So I had to laugh as I watched the blue blood beer princess Meghan McCain rip into Palin this week for calling Barbara Bush a “blue blood”. The humor factor? It seems our Columbia educated McCain had no idea of what a “blue blood” was and had to Google the term. Even then she still didn’t seem to understand the term.
McCain’s a rather Obamaeque figure in my view. She’s in a position of national prominence – a “pundit” with a national publication – although she’s really done nothing to earn such a position. That doesn’t stop her from having a rather inflated opinion of herself and her talents and abilities. And as you might expect her work reflects that problem.
Let’s get real here - she’s in the position she enjoys because of her Dad’s political prominence. Otherwise she’d be a wannabe pundit slogging away on some obscure blog and wishing someday to have a national platform – sort of like me. Because of her name, and as someone who nominally claims to be a Republican but spends most of her time ripping Republicans, she makes the perfect token for the publication where she contributes.
That’s not to say there’s anything particularly wrong or unique about her situation. I think we know it happens all the time. All sorts of organizations hire the children of famous “blue bloods” hoping to trade off the name they bring. And obviously, the Daily Beast isn’t above such motivation.
The irony, of course, is she seems completely oblivious to the fact that her “blue blood” is why she’s where she is at the moment.
I remember, when Sarah Palin broke upon the scene, the almost sneering condescension she received from, well, members of the media aristocracy (blue bloods aren’t found just in politics, Ms McCain) when it was discovered her degree was from …. the University of Idaho? God forbid. Idaho? Is that even a state (yeah, one of the 57 we have out here in flyover land)?
And she had actually worked on a fishing boat and liked to hunt. She was treated like an 6-eyed alien just come to earth, something unseen and unheard of before.
True, Sarah Palin has managed to shoot herself in the foot many times, but I see that more as a function of instant celebrity, the attempt to adjust to that celebrity and the media culture’s negative obsession with those who don’t fit their template of an “acceptable” female politician. As we’ve remarked many times, she was 1,000 times more thoroughly vetted by the media than was our current President (he fit the template perfectly).
I’d also point out that as long as she offers political commentary, she is fair game for the so-called “pundit class”. That’s true about anyone in the political arena.
But I’m not sure I’d extend the title “pundit” to someone like Meghan McCain. Other than snark and bad sentence structure she doesn’t offer much.
Call it tangential blue blood celebrity, but it seems to me that if you want to be taken seriously and actually earn and keep that celebrity (after daddy retires from public life and prominence) you have to have something of value to offer. Badly worded and vapid diatribes about commonly understood terms you still don’t get aren’t likely to accomplish that. As James Joyner says, if the Daily Beast intends upon keeping McCain, they could do us all a favor and at least get her an editor.
And yes, this will likely be the first and last Meghan McCain post – I know, thank goodness for that.