The Anti-Education Candidate.

September 23, 2008 · Leave a Comment

I’m just going to put it out there.  Sarah and Todd Palin are not the best educated people.

Looking at the evidence in one way, you might say that Sarah Palin has actually had personal experience with a lot of colleges.  Why, she’s been to so many you’d almost expect her to have completed a post-doctorate.  But no, Sarah Palin switched colleges as many as six times in six years before graduating with a Bachelors degree in Journalism in 1987.  You are not likely to have heard of most of those six schools.

I’ll list them here for you: University of Hawaii, Hilo (for a few weeks, according to a friend’s biography, although no official records seem to exist for this stint.  She and her friends left because “it rained too much.”); Hawaii Pacific University; North Idaho College (a 2-year institution in Cour d’Alene); University of Idaho; Matanuska-Sustina College in Palmer; back to the University of Idaho.  There are no records of significant campus involvement or achievement.  Despite her degree in journalism, it does not appear that she worked for any campus newspaper, radio or television station.  See the Los Angeles Times story, “Republican Vice Presidential Nominee Palin Changes Colleges 6 Times in 6 Years.”

Husband Todd Palin is reported to have accumulated some college credits, but has no college degree.

When Sarah and Todd’s lack of academic interest and distinction is combined, we are left with a portrait of a couple who does not seem to have placed much value on education for themselves.  Perhaps we can better understand the lack of foreign travel, the lack of familiarity with issues outside the very local parochial ones of hockey rinks or Alaska-specific pipelines and oil company taxes.  They simply haven’t been exposed to much of the world yet.

Perhaps it is this lack of educational achievement that appeals to many working class Americans who can see themselves in the Palins.  Perhaps McCain believed that he could make charges of “elitism” stick on Obama by choosing a running mate with a paucity of academic commitment, especially given his own lack of accomplishment while at the Naval Academy.

Is it just me, or do Sarah and Todd Palin remind you of the King and The Queen of your high school prom?  Popular and attractive, their best years end the day of high school graduation.  Only now McCain wants you to vote them into the Vice Presidency for four more years.  Appropriately enough the average span of someone’s high school experience.

Call me an elitist if you must, but I happen to believe that we need to elect people who have spent a significant amount of time committed to learning about the world.  People who have created a record of high achievement in education because of their intellect and ability to sustain commitment and hard work over a long period of time.

The Palins do not fit this bill.  But in a popularity contest, they were killer.  Will they be again?

Categories: Palin · Palintology · Todd
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