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Even Sean Hannity Can't Honestly Believe Palin's Smarter Than Obama

Reported by Julie - March 8, 2010 -

How much does Sean Hannity (and Fox, in general) want Fox' newest contributor, Sarah Palin, to be a political player? Enough, it appears, that Hannity at least is willing to risk a call for the men in the little white coats to take him away for his comment that Sarah Palin is smarter than Barack Obama (3/4/10). President Obama is considered by many to be, academically and intellectually, one of the smartest presidents to ever take office -- true or not, it's indisputable that he is well-educated. But nobody -- I mean nobody -- could accuse Sarah Palin of being a great intellect; in fact, nobody could ever accuse Sarah Palin of being the smartest anything to do anything. Canny and conniving, maybe. But smart, like, book-smart and policy-smart and knowing stuff smart? Ain't happenin'. And even minimally educated Sean Hannity cannot possibly believe what he said, that Sarah Palin is smarter than Barack Obama . . . well, on the other hand, maybe he feels an affinity for Palin; after all, water does seek its own level. With video.

On Hannity's panel, Fox News contributor Juan Williams, S.E. Cupp and Blake Shelton (but mostly just Williams and Hannity, with Cupp throwing in gratuitously indignant comments about sexism) debated the merits of Palin's intellect over President Obama's.

Hannity first glowed over Sarah Palin's appearance on Jay Leno's show . . . roll the clip, go.

Hannity proposed to the panel, ". . . I think she's gone a long way to opening the door for people to say, all right, maybe she was treated unfairly."

Williams conceded that she was "very human and funny . . . I think she is a superstar, a centerfold for conservative men," but went on to say that she's not likely to convince 75% of the American public who don't think she's qualified to be president.

Hannity gushed, "I think she's brilliant, I think she's gutsy, I think she's courageous, and I'll tell you what, I think she's smarter than Barack Obama. She wouldn't lead us into this socialist utopia . . . ."

Smarter than Barack Obama? Five colleges in six years to get a bachelors degree? Couldn't explain the office of Vice President of the United States -- the job she was applying to the American public for -- four times? And those "gotcha" interviews with Katie Couric and Charlie Gibson . . . whew, sharp intellect are not the words that instantly spring to mind.

Williams reacted the way many of us reacted to this statement, except he kept his jaw from dropping to the floor and I didn't see him spit a mouthful of coffee out, either. "You are so wild on this point," he told Hannity, ". . . Your libido is . . . getting in the way of your thinking."

Hannity insisted that he'd take "Governor" (former, maybe?) Palin as President over Barack Obama, to which Williams incredulously replied, "Come on . . . You would trust her with our national security over Barack Obama . . . you'd rather listen to her explain national policy than Barack Obama?" This earned an emphatic "yes" from Hannity -- which goes to show that thinking with a libido doesn't merely interfere with thinking, it turns men of otherwise average intelligence into blithering idiots. I mean, come on -- it was on Hannity's own show that Palin seemed to not know the difference between Iran and Iraq.

We heard a little bit more blather from Hannity about President Obama being "the worst president since Jimmy Carter," a little bit more Palin-promoting from Cupp, who said Palin is "funny, she's quick on her feet, she's a smart lady," and a little side comment from Shelton that Palin is "way cuter than Obama."

Hannity, accused by Williams of being "self-righteous," protested that Williams was trying to diminish Palin, and claimed, "What if I started commenting on Michelle Obama's looks? . . . We don't go after Barack Obama's wife and what she wears and her clothes . . . nobody does." Wow, then this must have been somebody pretending to be Sean Hannity on Sean Hannity's radio show who ridiculed Michelle Obama's clothes when she went overseas and claimed she was wearing designer clothes so people would call her "Jackie Kennedy." Of course, in his defense, most of his smears have nothing to do with clothing, like when he implied that Michelle was a racist, unpatriotic, and said she was "bitter and angry."

(And as an aside, Williams can't exactly take the high road on this one either. He's slammed Michelle Obama on more than one occasion, at one time saying she has "this Stokely Carmichael-in-a-designer-dress thing going" and that she could be a "liabilit[y]" or an "albatross" for President Obama.)

Hannity protested, "She's smart enough not to dig us into this hole of socialism, she's smart enough not to cut our nukes in half, smart enough not to negotiate with Iran without preconditions, smart enough to understand capitalism works over socialism . . . ."

Let's separate the wheat from the chaff here, beginning with, "Smart enough not to dig us into this hole of socialism." In Alaska, as reported by TPM Cafe, "Alaskans get $13,000 in oil revenues for a family of four, and an average $12,000 per person in federal benefit. But Sarah Palin as governor decided she needed another windfall tax on oil. That's more money you and I pay at the pump. Sarah Palin - easy with other people's money." Sounds suspiciously like that whole "socialism" thing Hannity's busy praising Palin for not doing. On the other hand, she did flip Wasilla's previously balanced budget into a "$3000/person debt to build a sports complex," so maybe she does understand capitalism, after all.

"She's smart enough not to cut our nukes in half," bleated Hannity. Hannity is, of course, no military expert, and never even served in the military -- but he apparently believes he and little Sarah know more about nuclear weapons than, say, "Retired U.S. generals and admirals [who] have repeatedly advocated junking all nuclear weapons, calling them ruinously expensive and of no military value." And, although Republicans are professing fear at the nuclear threat from North Korea and Iran, and "accuse Obama of near treason for having even considered junking America’s huge nuclear arsenal," the truth is that "North Korea has no long-ranged nuclear capability and wants nukes for defence against a possible U.S. nuclear attack . . . Iran has no nuclear weapons as of now and poses no threat to the distant U.S."

And about that "smart enough not to negotiate with Iran without preconditions" thing -- apparently Hannity also thinks he and Palin are smarter, militarily, than James Baker, the former US secretary of state who served under both Reagan and President George HW Bush, who "implicitly criticised Mr Obama’s Republican critics who have said that the decision to negotiate with Iranian leaders without preconditions had encouraged Iran’s nuclear programme and legitimised the results of last summer’s disputed election." As reported by The National, Baker said, “If harsh rhetoric means you don’t talk to people, then we shouldn’t have been meeting with the Soviet Union for 40 years during the Cold War . . . But you do more than talk, that’s what the current administration in my view is doing.”

Williams wrapped it up with, "Smart enough to quit on the voters of Alaska before her term was up."

Amen to that.