... seems to have been .... well, Palin was in the Big Lychee on her first visit to Asia, delivering her first major speech abroad at a high-profile conference of bankers and regional finance executives. A reported 1,100 delegates crammed into the ballroom to hear her champion "commonsense conservatism" and Reaganomics and offer commentary on Asian geopolitics.
[...]Described by some as safe and by others as uncomfortable, the speech called for closer ties between the United States and China, and attacked the recent decision of the Barack Administration to impose heavy import tariffs on Chinese tyres.
However, it also warned of China’s own “internal contradictions” and America’s need to stand up to oppression.
The speech by the former Governor of Alaska was delivered in Hong Kong to the CLSA Asia Pacific Markets Forum " a lavish annual beano where more than a thousand of the world’s most astute investors come to hear the views of the foremost political and business minds on Earth.
Several audience members reportedly walked out of Ms Palin’s speech 30 minutes before the end, citing “more important things to do” or describing the talk as “too partisan and too much like a speech at the Republican convention”.
One senior fund manager told The Times that the 80-minute lecture, and the lack of an opportunity to fire any questions at Ms Palin, was a disappointment. “You would think that with her team of speechwriters and a supposedly media-free environment Palin could have afforded to be either funny or thought-provoking, but she was neither,” she said.
The speech attacked America’s worsening fiscal position and condemned President Obama’s healthcare plan. Many Americans, she said, were not happy with proposed reforms that impinge on private enterprise. She has recently used her popular Fecebook page to express her opposition to the Obama plan, claiming that it would create “death panels” for old people.
Although the CLSA event was strictly off-limits to the media, one attendee remarked that the speech felt like it was carefully crafted for a global television audience, and amounted to Ms Palin’s setting out her policy stall for the longer term.
“This was about an obviously ambitious wannabe presidential candidate laying down a marker on her weak spot of foreign policy,” he said. “I think we are going to hear something very similar to this speech trotted out again in different places over the next months and years.”
Playing more obviously to a room full of investors, Ms Palin quoted Margaret Thatcher’s comment that there is no alternative to capitalism because it is the system that ensures the most prosperity for the most people. Market-based solutions, she said, must be allowed to improve US healthcare and she concluded that the US economy would “roar back to life” if the private sector were allowed its freedom.
Despite it being her first visit to China, Ms Palin had come armed with a range of forthright views on the Middle Kingdom and how it should conduct itself. China, she argued, must support the de-nuclearisation of Iran and North Korea; the United States should maintain a strong military presence in the region “until China’s internal contradictions are resolved”.
Asia is at its best, she added, when it is not dominated by a single power.
Besides its political impact, the speaking engagement is understood to have brought substantial financial relief to Ms Palin, whose recent legal battles have left her with bills of about $500,000 (£304,000).
CLSA’s refusal to reveal the fee paid to Ms Palin added to the general mood of secrecy surrounding the event, but it is thought to be in the range of between $170,000 to $220,000.
Source: Times online