tacitly calling Sarah Palin a pig
, he not only displayed the insight of an eighth-grade bully, he also demonstrated the nimble skill of a master of the political art. Ever wily, Obama has mastered the art of insulting his opponent, without seeming to. Like a Judo master or a man farting next to a dog, he is adept at shifting the blame, feigning innocence, and undercutting the hate of his words without removing the stinger.
A simple example will illustrate the point. Imagine, if you will, Senator Obama making the following statements:
“Sarah Palin is a fat, greasy pig.”
“If you put lipstick on a pig, it’s still a pig.”
Of the two ways he could have presented his argument, he chose the one that, while still conveying the necessary information (ie, Sarah Palin’s love of rolling in mud and feces to compensate for her lack of sweat glands), doesn’t directly accuse his opponent.
He also gets bonus points for “riffing” off of her oft-repeated statement that she, in fact, is a trained pit bull that was slathered with lipstick. Why this is an improvement over a pig is debatable, but the point stands.
In fact, the only suggestion I would have made to Senator Obama is that he could have gone a little less subtle, and still gotten away with it. To my mind, the ideal statement would have been:
“If you put lipstick on a pig that happens to be named Sarah, it’s still a Palin…I mean pig.” Followed by a broad wink and some minor snorting noises.
You’ve got to remember Senator: you’re addressing the American public. If they can’t pick up the subtext in