classical economics
for analysis,  forecasting
and policy design

Sarah Palin Connects
Inspires Middle Class Trust, Elitist Enmity
By Wayne Jett © July 28, 2009

    Fireworks have marked former Alaska governor Sarah Palin’s time on the national political scene since Republican presidential candidate John McCain selected her as his vice-presidential running mate. A crowd of 15,000 partisans on August 29, 2008, in Dayton, Ohio, erupted with delight as Palin was announced by McCain. Enthusiasm rose as Palin spoke, reaching crescendo as her remarks concluded.
    Through election day, Palin drew the campaign’s largest and most energetic crowds. She drew the biggest television debate audience when she debated the Democratic vice-presidential candidate, Joseph Biden, the long-term senator from Delaware. This was impressive performance by a person previously unknown to those responding to her. She became a “phenom.”
Wall Street’s Reaction
    Raucous support for Palin was not universal. Palin’s nomination speech inspired watching hedge fund managers to pick up their phones and raise additional millions to assure McCain’s defeat. Wall Street had reason to believe McCain was its secondary candidate in the “other” party. McCain stayed close to Wall Street’s Treasury secretary, Henry Paulson, even during the October “surprise” meltdown of the U. S. and global economies, a fatal error for McCain’s election chances.
    McCain’s selection of Palin, however, showed he was off the reservation. When McCain selected a popular potential successor who was seen as anathema to Wall Street’s agenda, the big players there increased their spending to assist Obama’s election.
Sarah’s Secret Sauce
    Why did Sarah Palin inspire such divergent responses on Wall Street in contrast with Dayton and in “fly-over country,” also known as the red counties of America? Sarah Palin exemplifies middle class values and standards in their most attractive embodiment. Her daily approach to life is can-do. She imposes upon herself moral standards contained within the cardinal virtues:  prudence, temperance, justice and fortitude. The Christian virtues of faith, hope and charity fit naturally upon that foundation.
    Palin does not view this framework for living life as imposing stultifying burdens upon her or as chains restraining her preferred choices. She sees them as the best framework for joyfully embracing all prospects of life. In turn, middle class Americans recognize her as one of their own – an admirable and trustworthy person because she shares their beliefs about what is important.
Elitists vs. Middle Class
    This is why elitists who dominate Wall Street and Manhattan recognized Palin as a potential Joan of Arc capable of leading the middle class in a counter-offensive against them. Elitists were alert to Palin’s rise and prompt to act against her. This should not be surprising. Elitists know the middle class is their historical adversary and regard the middle class with disdain and enmity.
    During the Dark Ages (elitists call them “the good ol’ days”), no middle class existed. Elitists included a monarch or other government potentate, plus friends, supporters and functionaries. All others were serfs or peasants, who had no political rights, parliaments or prospects for improved living conditions.
    Over centuries of struggle, violence, disease and poverty, some among the common people fought for and won political rights. These provided a foothold for legal rights to compete in business against elite mercantilists so long enriched by government favoritism. Open competition in relatively free markets enabled the middle class to produce industrial and technological revolutions. Astonishing economic progress led Karl Marx to write in 1848 that private capitalism had accomplished more in a few generations than had non-capitalist societies in all human history.
The 2008 Elitist Assault
    Elitists of Wall Street are watchful for opportunities to weaken or destroy the middle class. In 2008, elitists engaged in their most aggressive and transparent attack on the middle class in the history of the United States. They did not wish any high official of U. S. government to be an able defender of middle class interests while that attack was still underway.
    Henry Paulson left his position as CEO of Goldman Sachs in 2006 and established an unassailable elitist command post at the Treasury Department. If McCain were to win the presidency, neither Paulson nor any Wall Street successor at Treasury would desire a vice president with Palin’s middle class values capable of interdicting the elitist agenda in banking and finance, in the auto industry, in energy and in health care.
    In this context, elitist media attacked Palin tenaciously throughout the 2008 presidential campaign. Afterwards, CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric was given a “coveted” Cronkite Award by the University of Southern California’s school of communications for journalistic excellence because her interview of Palin was perceived as having “national impact” on the presidential campaign.
    Elitist attacks on Palin continue despite McCain’s presidential loss because they see Palin as a future threat. They inspired a barrage of ethics charges against Palin in Alaska which ran up Palin’s personal legal bills to $500,000, in addition to expenses incurred by the state itself. Elitist media figure Bill Maher calls America a “stupid nation” precisely because Sarah Palin might actually be elected president. The elitist goal is to increase the public’s negative perception of Palin on any grounds whatever, because negative perceptions affect outcomes of future political contests.
Palin’s Road Ahead
    Sarah Palin’s resignation as governor of Alaska is not likely to bring an end to elitist-inspired attacks on her, but she may be able to defend herself and to counterattack in ways she could not so long as she remained governor. Those considerations will be left to political pundits to consider. Despite all the attacks on Palin, if middle class Americans were asked today whether they would trust Sarah Palin or Barack Obama to make decisions in the best interests of the country, neither the president nor the Inner Elite would like the answer.
    Palin’s base will remain what it has been from the outset of her entry into local, state and national politics. It is the culture she reflects in her character and judgment. She is middle class through-and-through, which means she is a formidable warrior on matters of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Elitists have reason to be wary of her. She might lead a middle class offensive. ~