Monday, March 9, 2009

The 2008 Kaelin Award

The year was 2008. People actually seemed to care about what was going on in the world, taking its problems to heart and doing their part to speak out. Perhaps because the Bush administration was finally nearing its end and because we had an election that was as entertaining as it was important, the public gave a damn. Our usual contenders for this award, given to the most worthless publicity hound in the country, were barely heard from. Heck, Paris Hilton even did something remotely worthwhile, volleying back a mildly amusing video after John McCain tried to use her sullied name for his own political exploits. That left us facing the prospect of no valid Kaelin Award this year. Honestly, we would have been more than happy to take a year off. But just as the election seemed to protect us from vapid, self-serving media whores appearing on all of our favorite programs and being discussed at water coolers across the country, they provided us with our top two candidates anyway. Politicians had been universally absolved from winning the Kaelin, but we have no choice but to make an exception this year. Just for review, here is the award criteria:
The Kaelin is bestowed upon the individual who, having no discernible talent or ability, accomplishing nothing to society’s benefit, and lacking any connection to any true art form or even remotely positive endeavor has been nonetheless repeatedly shoved down our ever-loving throats. We didn’t ask for these people. They have been forced upon us. And no matter who we are, we have been unable to avoid their media blitzing.
I cannot think of anything that better embodies those ideals than the vice presidential candidacy of Sarah Louise Palin.Do I believe that Sarah Palin is truly worthless, along the lines of a Paris Hilton or Ashley Simpson? I don't know. She can apparently play the flute. Let's be honest - of course she is! Holed up in my Buenos Aires hotel, my only method for watching the Republican convention this year was on Fox News. After her "speech", an oratory which consisted entirely of reading invective and untruths written by other people, the right-wing cheerleaders eagerly declared, "A star is born." I realized it was Fox, but was still appalled by the fact that they found this person to be remotely presidential (or even vice-presidential). What followed was a media assault reminiscent of, well, the last eight years or so. Every day, someone new came around to defend her as "tough" or "a pit bull." Armed with ludicrous claims like "nobody knows more about special needs children than she does" and "her state is the closest to Russia, therefore she has a lot of experience with foreign policy," we were continually bombarded with the postulated image of a "hockey mom" who could soon run the entire country.This is a controversial choice to be sure. Normally, we have to endure birdbrained fools discussing their meaningless existence with Conan O'Brien and Harry Smith. Instead, we had agents of worthlessness discussing someone else's imbecilic existence for her. This is equally bad. Meanwhile, this hootenanny of a human being went around the country raising the collective level of hatred and animosity. Somehow she largely got away with it, believing even at the end that if she could have just been let off the leash a bit more, the Republicans would carry the day.

Thankfully, 55% of the American people weren't buying what Palin and her media cohorts were selling. But for six months, it was all Sarah, all the time. Like many of our candidates, this award isn't really her doing. None of our Kaelin winners get there on their own. Maybe she's not worthless. In the end, she did help keep John McCain from getting elected president. But in a weak year, you sometimes have to accept a flawed champion.
I leave you with the below salient commentary. This video that will surely make no sense in a few years, but for now, it does a fair job summing up the ridiculousness that was Sarah Palin, VP Candidate. NOTE - definitely not safe for work, or late at night with the lights off. This little lady may haunt your dreams.

Related posts:
The history of the Kaelin
Last year's Kaelin winner
A personal rant against the Palin nomination

No comments: