Michael Cleverly: Cleverly or Not? | AspenTimes.com

Michael Cleverly: Cleverly or Not?

Michael Cleverly
Aspen Times Weekly

I’ve never let stubbing my toe on a fact slow me down when it comes to my columns, but every once in a while I find those “fact” things amusing, and right now some post-election goings-on are getting my attention.

Number one on my wish list, of course, was for Barack Obama to win, and the list went on from there. A lottery win for me was right up there, probably number two; a decent movie for Saturday night is a rare and wonderful thing; getting laid is always nice … you get the picture; it’s a lot like your list. Also up there near the top was for Sarah Palin to disappear back into the Alaskan wilderness, never to be heard from again.

Well, I can’t complain, I got the big one and I couldn’t be happier. To be honest, I really would have liked just one more wish from the top five, but I kind of know better.

Nonetheless, I would have thought that Governor Palin going away until the next election cycle would have been an easy one, kind of a gimme. But no, she’s still around ” on my TV, in the papers, in my brain. At first I didn’t think it was her fault. I blamed these anonymous voices inside the Republican campaign who were griping about her.

On Tuesday she was the lead story on the Today Show. First Palin, then Obama visiting Bush at the White House. Does that make sense to you? Why is she still news? Now it’s true that she didn’t have to do an interview with Matt Lauer ” that was her choice ” but I suspect she wanted a forum better than an airport tarmac to answer a lot of these new questions and accusations that are being flung her way.

People seem to be OK with leaving John McCain alone to lick his wounds, as they should, but for some reason folks don’t seem willing to give Palin the same courtesy. There’s this post-election wave of irrelevant sniping directed at the broad that even I think is silly. People from inside the McCain campaign are leaking the notion that Palin was “difficult.” We’re being led to believe that her handlers are the source of this information. She apparently wasn’t exactly easy to handle. That doesn’t surprise me and I don’t think it should have surprised them.

Here’s this Alaska broad with a dude husband, an outdoors kind of girl, hunting, fishing, snowmobiles, a pile of kids, the whole ball of wax. She’s apparently self-made, first the mayor of her little town and now the governor of her state; she figures all this out pretty much by herself, and it ends up that she doesn’t fancy being “handled.” Do tell. All of a sudden a bunch of D.C. slicksters are trying to tell this broad how to be Sarah Palin and they’re surprised that she doesn’t like it.

Personally, I wouldn’t much care to have a bunch of political flacks trying to handle me, and I doubt if you’d like it much either. Now they’re seemingly so bitter about the experience they have to take shots at her long after the fact. I don’t think I’ve ever heard of people beating up on a presidential candidate for this sort of trivial stuff after a losing election, let alone a vice presidential candidate. And it’s keeping her in the news.

And there’s more. The same people (I assume) are bitching about her clothes. I’d bet a buck that every human being in the country with an “R” after his or her name was 100 percent behind Sarah Palin looking as telegenic as possible while campaigning, and I kind of doubt that the L.L. Bean togs that are haute couture in the 49th state would suffice on the campaign trail. But now they’re griping about it as though she thought up a pile of unreasonable demands all by herself.

I don’t know about you, but if someone tried to get me to run for vice president I’d have a few demands of my own, and they’d make Sarah Palin’s clothes look like small potatoes.

Now lackeys and functionaries are collecting all this fancy stuff to, supposedly, give it to charity. I’d love for some reporter to follow the Palin wardrobe from her closet in Alaska to wherever it ends up. Not me. As much as The Aspen Times would like to see me go to Alaska, they don’t want to get rid of me enough to pay for the trip. Maybe if they could get a guarantee that it was one-way …

Anyway, what’s probably going to happen is that the clothes will end up in some vast Republican warehouse like the one at the end of “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” The dresses and suits will be stashed next to Jimmy Hoffa’s body and the evidence of “Weapons of Mass Destruction,” and it will all be tended by the guy who really shot Kennedy.

And that would be that. Except that Palin is still in the news.

In the end, there’s little chance America has seen the last of Sarah Palin. But it would be nice if these anonymous types would clam up. Between them and Palin’s own knack for self-promotion, we’ll never get a chance to miss her.


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