Sarah Palin gave a speech during the Iowa Freedom Summit in late January.
There’s speculation that Sarah Palin’s teleprompter broke, forcing the former vice presidential nominee to freestyle her speech. People keep sharing clips like this one to show just how ridiculous Sarah Palin sounded:
Well, I hate to be that guy, but I’m here to tell ya: Sarah Palin is an oratory genius.
Behind that seemingly nonsensical word-soup, there lies a depth of meaning so nuanced and profound that future linguistics students will marvel at it for generations to come. I have previously defended some allegedly stupid celebrity quotes that really weren’t that stupid at all.
Allow me to do the same for Sarah Palin. Let’s break that part of her speech down and see what Sarah Palin is really telling us.
“It must change. Things must change for this cover…t-e-e-e-e…our government”
This may seem like a run-of-the-mill slip of the tongue to the uninitiated, but make no mistake: It was no mistake! Sarah Palin almost—but not quite—says the word “covert.” You know, covert operations, listening to our telephone conversations, spying on US allies. All those illegal activities the government is engaged in? Sarah Palin’s saying, “I know what y’all are up to. I’m watching ya!” And she says so without actually completing a sentence. Incredible.
“Look at it! It isn’t too big to fail. It’s too big to succeed!”
You see how she flipped that? Some of the greatest minds of human history have done this, too:
“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” – JFK
“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” – FDR
“You think that you are strong, but you are weak. You’ll see.” – Madonna
“It’s too big to succeed, so we can afford no retreads!”
In this metaphor, the government is a monster truck. Have you ever tried to retread the tires on a monster truck? Nobody can afford that!
“With the same people, the same policies that got us since the, the status quo. Another Latin word: ‘status quo'”
“Status quo” sure is Latin. What, did you think it was Greek? Don’t be silly.
“And it stands for: ‘Man, the middle class, everyday Americans are really gettin’ taken for a ride.’ That’s status quo!”
One word: Imagery. That’s how it’s done.
“And GOP leaders, by the way. You know? The man…can only ride ya when your back is bent.”
True story. Have you ever tried riding someone whose back is straight? You’ll slip right off. Unless you use some grappling hooks to attach yourself to the one you’re riding, but that usually requires too much effort.
“So strengthen it. Then the man can’t ride ya! America won’t be taken for a ride.”
Can’t argue with that. In fact, the myriad benefits of strengthening your core are very well documented.
“Because so much is at stake! And we can’t afford politicians playing games, like nothing more is at stake than…oh, maybe just the next standing of theirs in the next election.”
Yeah, fuck it. I give up. That was too much for my brain.