This weekend I had the amazing opportunity to see The Undefeated, watching it at home with my husband. Being a contributor to C4P has its privileges. I hope everyone has a chance to see this film when it is released nationally and becomes available on DVD.
As you’re already aware, the film sheds light on many details about Alaska, oil, gas, taxes, budgets, corruption fighting, bi-partisan teamwork, privatizing dairy farms, infrastructure projects, ethics reform, and federal sting operations.
In other words, all the things Palin detractors say she would be too stupid to know anything about.
This is not a lightweight film. It’s not a date-night flick or E! True Hollywood story. It requires full attention, a sober mind, and two-hour time commitment. Governor Palin’s story may be inspirational, but it’s also a tad wonky. And that busts quite a few false memes right off the bat.
The one part that especially grabbed my husband was the brief montage at the very beginning showcasing Hollywood’s maniacal hatred of Sarah Palin. It was an ugly, yet strangely fascinating display of vulgarity that perhaps should have been better explained. It was jarring to go from Madonna screaming out obscenities about Sarah Palin to suddenly seeing Heath family home movies, and a discussion of how Palin spearheaded Wasilla sewer and road projects. And that’s probably the point Bannon was attempting to make. There’s just no rationale for the venom.
Having very little understanding, obviously, of what I do all day every day at C4P, my non-political husband innocently asks, “Why do they hate her? What did Sarah Palin ever do to them? Is it her policies? What?”
After watching the first 60 minutes or so of wonky, ethical, bi-partisan Sarah Palin, my husband’s conclusion? “There’s nothing about her record that they could hate so much. They hate her only because she opposes the one they love … Barack Obama.”
That’s a pretty good theory. There is no way an honest person could sit through this movie and hate Sarah Palin for her record. She turned in her state party chairman, for crying out loud. She fought against the oil money that had hopelessly corrupted the Republican Party in Alaska. The government was not responding to the will of the people. Palin fought to change that. Her ethics reform legislation created criminal penalties for vote bribes. Her energy development policies put the citizens of Alaska back in the driver’s seat instead of Big Oil. All of her significant legislative measures were overwhelmingly bi-partisan. She enjoyed sustained high approval ratings from voters.
So how do we get from 88% approval to Tina Fey caricatures?
It’s pretty simple, really. Palin challenges the status quo and establishment wherever she goes. She has been underestimated and maligned wherever she goes. And this was a little surprising even to me. I thought I knew her record pretty well, but she has been called stupid and in-over-her-head for decades. Only when people see her fighting for the right things and defeating powerful interests do they gain grudging respect for her.
So, all this opposition that we’ve seen the last three years is nothing new. Sure, the mediots have taken it to a whole new level. But everyone needs to understand and appreciate the fact that Sarah Palin has been viciously opposed from the moment she stepped into the public arena 20 years ago. As a city councilor and mayor, she challenged the old guard who had hoped to maintain control of the city. Under the old guard, the city of Wasilla languished as a permanent backwater. Palin fought to move the city forward. As mayor, she halved property taxes, and did the unglamorous work of building up the infrastructure that would attract businesses and jobs, while keeping the financial burden low for hard-working Wasillans.
Palin took that same attitude to the governor’s office, where she opened up the gas line negotiations, and put an end to the backroom deals that plagued the Murkowski administration. She progressed her state and accomplished things in just two and a half years that had eluded other governors over the past 30 years.
Sarah Palin would take that same relentless, goal-focused approach to the White House. And what pains me most of all is that the folks who hate her do not know who she really is or what she stands for.
All those folks in Hollywood who think they’re so progressive have no idea what progress really means.
If they’d take the time to learn more about Sarah Palin’s impressive record, they’d find out.