Disgruntled Democrats, Sarah Palin, and the Hawthorne Effect
According to the Volokh Conspiracy, Sarah Palin is "a huge hit at the Hillary Clinton Forum."
If you're like me, you're wondering "what the fuck is the Hillary Clinton Forum?"
If I'm like me, I'm also asking "why the fuck am I reading the Volokh Conspiracy?"
Now, regardless of my disgust for McCain and for the many hard-right views of Palin, this is simply true....
With this pick, the GOP showed it was listening to disgruntled Democrats, whereas the Democrats have been quite resolute about not doing that, sometimes audaciously so.
Putting a little anti-Republican content in Obama’s convention speech is the only thing vaguely like a bone that’s been thrown to us this entire campaign.
Bypassing a lot of more-obvious choices to (if we may correctly guess the motivation) put a woman on McCain's ticket is surely intended to excite interest from PUMAs.
Should feminists find a McCain/Palin ticket appealing? I would hope not.
But, what we’re seeing here (if this forum is of some anecdotal relevance) is the Hawthorne Effect in action:
...people's behavior and performance change following any new or increased attention
Affording the Clintons the opportunity to rebuild their reputations -- which the Obama camp had unfairly destroyed -- by dutifully jumping (masterfully, as it turned out) through hoops of Obama support doesn't quite cut it for some of us, but YMMV.
Even if (though) Palin isn't a legitimate draw for progressives, this nomination shows that we have a degree of leverage over the GOP and, AFAIK, none over the Democratic Party, which is content to put us on an ice floe for partisan, old, secular, feminist Bubbas.