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Gov. Palin Comments On The First Amendment

 
 
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 12:47 pm
http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/2008/10/31/palin/index.html

Quote:
Somehow, in Sarah Palin's brain, it's a threat to the First Amendment when newspapers criticize her negative attacks on Barack Obama. This is actually so dumb that it hurts:

In a conservative radio interview that aired in Washington, D.C. Friday morning, Republican vice presidential nominee Gov. Sarah Palin said she fears her First Amendment rights may be threatened by "attacks" from reporters who suggest she is engaging in a negative campaign against Barack Obama.

Palin told WMAL-AM that her criticism of Obama's associations, like those with 1960s radical Bill Ayers and the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, should not be considered negative attacks. Rather, for reporters or columnists to suggest that it is going negative may constitute an attack that threatens a candidate's free speech rights under the Constitution, Palin said.

"If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations," Palin told host Chris Plante, "then I don't know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media."

Maureen Dowd recently made an equally stupid comment when she complained that her First Amendment rights were being violated by the McCain campaign's refusal to allow her on their campaign plane.

The First Amendment is actually not that complicated. It can be read from start to finish in about 10 seconds. It bars the Government from abridging free speech rights. It doesn't have anything to do with whether you're free to say things without being criticized, or whether you can comment on blogs without being edited, or whether people can bar you from their private planes because they don't like what you've said.

If anything, Palin has this exactly backwards, since one thing that the First Amendment does actually guarantee is a free press. Thus, when the press criticizes a political candidate and a Governor such as Palin, that is a classic example of First Amendment rights being exercised, not abridged.

This isn't only about profound ignorance regarding our basic liberties, though it is obviously that. Palin here is also giving voice to the standard right-wing grievance instinct: that it's inherently unfair when they're criticized. And now, apparently, it's even unconstitutional.

According to Palin, what the Founders intended with the First Amendment was that political candidates for the most powerful offices in the country and Governors of states would be free to say whatever they want without being criticized in the newspapers. In the Palin worldview, the First Amendment was meant to ensure that powerful political officials such as herself would not be "attacked" in the papers. Is it even possible to imagine more breathaking ignorance from someone holding high office and running for even higher office?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 4 • Views: 1,595 • Replies: 8
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squinney
 
  2  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 12:53 pm
(shakes head)

No she didn't.

She didn't say that.

Please tell me she didn't really say that.
0 Replies
 
blatham
 
  2  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 12:55 pm
Either she is that stupid and uneducated or she merely desires to produce that result in her audience. In either case, yuck.
0 Replies
 
Woiyo9
 
  0  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 12:58 pm
"If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations," Palin told host Chris Plante, "then I don't know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media."

She is 100% correct about this.

TilleyWink
 
  1  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 01:03 pm
@engineer,
To question a person's knowledge of government and law (the constitution) during a politcal campaign is not an attack. It is simply a question.

However, to try to assign blame for something that happened 40 years ago to a person who happens to know another person that was involved but never convicted of a violant act could be a tad bit dishonest. In additon the 1st amendment does not protect all speech.
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 02:23 pm
@Woiyo9,
Quote:
"If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations," Palin told host Chris Plante, "then I don't know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media."

She is 100% correct about this.

Her complaints about media reporting have nothing to do with the first amendment. She's entitled to whine and complain all she wants, but it's the media that is protected by the Constitution, not her.

She seems to be blindly parroting right-wing propaganda. I would expect that from average citizens, but not from government officials, especially a VP candidate.

blatham
 
  1  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 02:37 pm
@rosborne979,
This is typical push-back/attack on media as a means of attempting to 'work the ref' and, importantly, to forward the notion that the media is liberal or biased against conservatives.

She may well be so unversed in constitutional questions that she actually believes that what she is saying makes sense (and is parroting this standard modern rightwing propaganda) or she may be doing it consciously. Hard to know. She consistently demonstrates a boggling lack of understanding regarding fundamentals.
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 02:56 pm
@Woiyo9,
Woiyo9 wrote:

"If [the media] convince enough voters that that is negative campaigning, for me to call Barack Obama out on his associations," Palin told host Chris Plante, "then I don't know what the future of our country would be in terms of First Amendment rights and our ability to ask questions without fear of attacks by the mainstream media."

She is 100% correct about this.

The first amendment says she can say what she wants within wide boundaries and the government can't stop her. The first amendment also says that the press can say what they want about what she said and the government likewise cannot stop them. As VP, Palin would be have to swear to uphold that. Seems like she's not buying into the job description.
0 Replies
 
Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Fri 31 Oct, 2008 03:14 pm
@engineer,
Palin really will get along great with Vladimir Putin. She must have seen him muzzle the Russian media from her Alaskan home. She certainly seems to agree it can help a leader make themselves heard.
0 Replies
 
 

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