Social Question

semblance's avatar

Do you think Sarah Palin can ever become a serious national candidate again?

Asked by semblance (1303points) March 2nd, 2010

I was inspired to ask this question by, of all things, an off subject political sideline that developed on a Fluther question about wolves. Anyway, my question is whether, objectively speaking, Sarah Palin has a legitimate chance of every becoming a serious national ticket candidate again, either for president or vice-president. I’m not asking if you like her or not, although I’m sure many of you will express your views on that, too. Personally, I rather admire her. I have the impression that the Fluther school is kind of more liberal than not, so I am probably swimming upstream when I confess that I like her. Whether liked by me or you, though, I think she has a lot of qualities that are undeniably positive in a candidate. She speaks well, dresses very well, is very pretty (to the point which makes me envious), and connects in a “down home” sort of way with a lot of people on social and moral issues (although personally I don’t agree with her on everything there). A lot of men find her appealing and so do many socially conservative women because she is attractive in an almost prissy way that doesn’t make her seem to be loose morally or threatening to other women. I know she did lousy on a straw poll at a recent Republican convention, but I can’t believe the front runner in that poll, Ron Paul, can be a national candidate. So, do you think Sarah Palin can ever get there and if so what does she need to do to make it happen?

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96 Answers

DarkScribe's avatar

No, but she could get a job as Tina Fey’s stand-in. I don’t think that she has any credibility left. Everything she did turned into a comedy or a disaster

Lightlyseared's avatar

I hope not.

@DarkScribe I doubt she has the inteligence for that

kevbo's avatar

I heard she’s planning to run with Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho.

Lve's avatar

what do you mean ‘again’?

semblance's avatar


Funny, but not accurate. If you were following anything in the 2008 campaign you know that when Sarah Palin was added to the ticket the Republican’s got a huge lift in their numbers. Everybody on the Democratic side was fretting that they were going to lose the election. Fortunately for then Senator Obama the economy chose to tank right after that and the tide turned, resoundingly, in the other direction.

Buttonstc's avatar

I’m hoping that the Repubs are stupid enough to try running her in the next election.

That will provide an easy win for the Dems.


CMaz's avatar

I sure would like to see how it goes, if she did.

mattbrowne's avatar

I think she’s extremely dangerous and hope she never reappears on the national stage. There are very few people who are more ignorant than Sarah Palin. Worst of all are her views that sex education isn’t a good idea and that schools should both teach evolution and creationism. Bashing fruit fly research in 2008 really did it. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. How can the most innovative country in the word pick a complete ignorant fool like Sarah Palin as a vice president candidate? Portraying scientists as a complete bunch of idiots because they waste valuable tax dollars on fruit fly research. Palin really declared war on science as a whole with her remarks. It really shows the danger of creationist thinking seeing evolution as a hoax.

I can’t imagine the Republican party being so foolish in 2012. I mean they got some reasonable and educated people who could be nominated.

Lve's avatar

That was before she started opening her mouth

marinelife's avatar

I don’t believe that she has enough smarts to get by through the rigors of an entire campaign.

semblance's avatar


Well, you’re entitled to your opinion, but I think you’re rewriting history. Her initial speeches were very well received. I don’t think she was “rolled out” to the media very well by her “handlers” and she had difficulty handling interviews as a result. However, she consistently wowed and energized the Republican base and I think she can do that again. I don’t know, though, if she can go beyond that to catch Independents.

Lve's avatar

According to your post she is impressive because she speaks well, dresses well, is pretty and has that ‘darn folksy quality’ real Americans love. If you think that makes her good enough to run your country, well that is your opinion. I certainly hope the majority of your fellow countrymen/women feel differently.

EmpressPixie's avatar


edited by me.

semblance's avatar


Your post reflects the kind of anger that seems to poison American politics. You are taking what I said out of context and twisting it around. I said that Sarah Palin has qualtiies that are undeniably positive in a candidate, whether you or I like her or not. And, although I do rather admire her I am not saying I would necessarily vote for her. That depeds on who her running mate would be and who is teamed up against them on the other side. My question is whether she can become a serious natioonal candidate, which calls for objective political analysis of the pros and cons, not voting on an opinion popularity poll.

Cruiser's avatar

As determined and appealing as she may be to many, I don’t think she stands a chance. America is reeling big time for electing a president on his campaign promises of hope and change…next time America will be a lot smarter and elect someone with actual experience and the ability to execute their campaign promises.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I want someone who is competent, capable, intelligent, and an inspiring leader.
I don’t want someone who is like me. I’m screwing around on Fluther when I should be working for Christ’s sake!
I want the holder of the Nuclear football to have an excellent understanding of science and the world situation- (and know how to pronounce “nuclear’ correctly.)

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I hope not. She is the current right-wing media darling, but lacks any intellect or background to fit her to the top job. Basically W without the fancy education and family connections. The Republicans basically have no one, so she may be the designated sacrificial lamb for 2012. Only Obama completely falling on his face, a la Jimmy Carter could put her in the White House.

Lve's avatar

First off, did I not restate what you posted? How am I twisting?
Secondly, yes, there was some sarcasm in my last post. I find it hard to understand why people are still talking about Palin as a serious contender for any important position. She has displayed such utter lack of capabilities over and over again. Even if I agreed with her ideology (which I don’t), it is beyond me why some people adore her so much.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

God, I hope not. Her level of ignorance of current events and world affairs is scary. I would not want her to be the one with the nuclear launch codes.

semblance's avatar


Twisting? I will spell it out for you step by step so that you can understand it.

1. To quote from my original post, I said, “Whether liked by me or you, though, I think she has a lot of qualities that are undeniably positive in a candidate.”

2. I never said I would necessarily vote for her. I did say that, “Personally, I rather admire her.” I also said that I “personally don’t agree with her on everything” regarding social and moral issues.

3. In your post, you said, “According to your post she is impressive because she speaks well, dresses well, is pretty and has that ‘darn folksy quality’ real Americans love. If you think that makes her good enough to run your country, well that is your opinion.” Thus, you suggested that I was endorsing her as my personal candidate of choice, when in reality all I have been doing is promoting a discussion on her chances of climbing back onto the national political stage. That is indeed twisting to anyone with the intellectual ability to analyze things objectively.

4. Further, you falsely attributed the phrase “darn folksy quality” to me, when I said no such thing. The nearest I came to that was that Sarah, “connects in a ‘down home’ sort of way with a lot of people on social and moral issues.” Again, that’s twisting dear.

Lve's avatar

no, that is called reading between the lines. And thanks for the personal jab at my intelligence, that is really mature.

thriftymaid's avatar

It’s hard to imagine.

semblance's avatar


Well, if your intelligence causes you to jump to conclusions that are not justified by the text, falsely quote someone, and be sarcastic when it is truly not called for then maybe you should consider learning how to train your mind to function in a more objective way.

FutureMemory's avatar

Sarah Palin is a joke.
There’s nothing more to say, really.

missingbite's avatar

Let me start by saying that Sarah Palin has more potential than almost any other person I can think of for many of the reasons that @semblance mentioned in the question. Almost everyone if not all of the left hate her. Almost all of the right love her. Her focus will have to be on the independents which will help her in the long run. Is she ready to run for President in the next election? Only time will tell. My opinion is no. It will take her, if she decides, at least until 2016. If I had a crystal ball, which I don’t, I would say she is already in the process of learning everything she can about the “world” stage. She has probably hired a team of people that will help her deal with the topics of today. The independents that she has to focus on, the ones who elected Scott Brown, will agree with most of the policies that she agrees with. Small government, fiscal responsibility, individual rights, etc. etc. People on the left, contrary to popular belief make up a minor of the population. About 30%. Independents are center right and Sarah Palin connects with them, especially women. People who hate her will always come up with cute video clips edited together to make her look stupid. We could do the same to Obama. Just google Obama 57 states. That is just one. Quips like that mean little.

The fact of the matter is that she connects with middle America. The left including the media will always hate her. The right will always love her. The middle just has to be proven that she has learned world events.

Flame away!

Jewel's avatar

@semblance The dems didn’t win because the economy tanked. It was already tanked! The dems won because Palin lost the election for the Republicans. You may see a shining example of reason, fairness and intelligence in her, but I see a small, under educated, unsure woman who has lived by bluff for a long time, and still believes that it works because it does work with folks like you who want to believe in her.
She frightens me with her ignorance and blatant disregard for anything that doesn’t fit her view of how things are.
Personally, I hope she runs again so we can shut her down for good. She will never be a viable candidate for national office again. She embarressed too many people.

ratboy's avatar

“be sarcastic when it is truly not called for”

If ever there was a discussion in which sarcasm was appropriate, this is it.

plethora's avatar

Anything can happen on the political scene. Obama got elected didnt he over Hillary Clinton, who was far more qualified. I never thought I would say that Hillary is quallfied to be President. I have never ever been a fan of hers. But throw Obama into the mix and suddenly she is a shining star, as far as I’m concerned. Sarah Palin? Again, anything can happen. I think she’s dumb like a fox, and very resourceful. Ya never know what will happen six years from now.

@mattbrowne Don’t start knocking Creationism as unscientific. Both creation and evolution start with a faith statement. If one believes there is a God (a faith statement), then one will see the scientific basis for creation. If one believes there is no God (a faith statement) then one will go with what he believes to be the scientific proof for evolution.

semblance's avatar

Jewel -

You know, this has been a very informative process for me because I am surprised by how so many people, like you, jump to conclusions and attribute positions to me that I have not taken. For example, your statement, “You may see a shining example of reason, fairness and intelligence in her . . . .” Not in my post, hon. Likewise, your statement that, “folks like you who want to believe in her . . . .” That’s not there either. I did say I rather admire her although I don’t agree with her on everything and I think she does indeed have some qualities that are valuable in a political candidate. Those remarks don’t justify your hyperbole, dear. I find it amusing that so many think that Sarah Palin is so stupid when they themselves make extreme statements and jump to conclusions which cannot be logically drawn from my post. People complain about how nasty the right is, often with good reason, but the left seems to be just as willing to paint someone with a broad tar brush just because they don’t like the question.

As to the economy, it is certainly true that the seeds of destruction for the US economy were well sown when Sarah was named as a vice presidential candidate. However, the public perception of the problem and many of the ramifications, such as the stock market crash, came afterwards. I am well aware of the timing because my own financial market – a sweet, Republican guy, by the way – had the sense to advise me to move my retirement funds out of the stock market before the big hit and Sarah was well up and running by then.

FutureMemory's avatar

Don’t start knocking Creationism as unscientific

Anyone else almost choke to death after reading this statement? Note to self: don’t eat food while reading Fluther, the unintentional comedy can be dangerous to your health.

gorillapaws's avatar

I think Palin would make an excellent president if she had about 10 more years of higher education in her. There are certain fundamental facts about our universe that she doesn’t seem to understand. Mistrusting Science isn’t one of those issues where it’s ok to say “you have your beliefs and I have mine.” People are welcome to doubt science, but they should be met with universal ridicule and scorn, the fact that it’s treated as a reasonable position by our media show just how CONSERVATIVELY biased our media has become. The fact that many conservative Americans now also have a serious mistrust of Science is frankly terrifying.

gorillapaws's avatar

@plethora your confusing evolution with abiogensis. It’s a common error that’s frequently perpetuated by conservatives.

missingbite's avatar

@gorillapaws 10 Years? That’s a little long don’t you think? You obviously have a passion for science and that is great. However, sometimes, even science can be distorted. Global warming comes to mind. Two years ago science had proven it was fact. Now we hear about false claims and distorted emails. And no significant warming in the last 15 years. Our current president calls himself a Christian. He has a belief as well that some may disagree with and point to science as proof.

You are correct in that she needs some education on the world stage. But 10 years? Maybe 3. If she wants it and is willing to do some leg work on the world stage, she is highly capable.

A lot of people think she can’t be President because she is ignorant. There is a huge difference between ignorant and unable. She is entirely capable of learning enough to be President.

gorillapaws's avatar

I’ve never said that Science wasn’t able to be distorted, but there’s a major problem when someone doubts an entire discipline of human understanding. What if Obama said he didn’t believe Music existed, or that the entire discipline of professional academic musicians were involved in a conspiracy to deceive the American public, he would be rightly ridiculed into oblivion (by liberals and conservatives alike).

As far as global climate change, there is a LOT of evidence that whacky things are going on, such as glaciers melting at alarming rates. I think the verdict is still out about those e-mails, but it doesn’t change the fact that the global climate has been changing (unless you think the satellite images of receding polar icecaps are faked somehow).

I’m not even all that passionate about Science to be honest, more terrified of a nation that’s actively regressing in it’s understanding of the world. It’s like there’s a conservative element that would love to see America descend into a second dark ages where the church is in charge, and you get burned at the stake for saying the world is round.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@missingbite I don’t want a President who’s capable of learning “enough.” I want a President who seeks knowledge and understanding wholeheartedly. Frankly, I was appalled when I heard that George Bush couldn’t even be bothered to read the newspapers. Maybe he knew “enough” (I’d argue that he didn’t), but the fact that he was proud of his keeping himself in the dark was very frightening.

You know the old saying, “Good enough for government work.” I want a President who is better than that.

susanc's avatar

She “speaks well”? Are you insane?

But yes, I think she has a chance, because the people who hated Obama before the election are now being joined by people who loved him but are despairing because he won’t fight. Sarah loves to fight. She’s got the brain of a snapping turtle.

semblance's avatar


Although I don’t think it is fair to question my sanity, you make some good points. If you mean that President Obama is a more polished, classically intellectual orator I won’t disagree. However, as to whether Sarah Palin “speaks well” probably depends on your frame of reference. If you share a significant amount of core conservative values and likes someone who speaks in a down home, direct kind of way, then you would probably think that Sarah Palin “speaks well”. I am judging “speaks well” in the context of politics and in particular with the speaker’s ability to connect with the audience. Although personally I find Sarah’s speaking style refreshing for its directness, whether I am insane or not and whether I like it or not does not matter for purposes of this discussion. From my view of audience reaction to her whenever she gave speeches during the campaign or even afterwards, I think she is a successful speaker.

You make some good points about the current political landscape. President Obama has been a disappointment to many of those who supported him. Since I don’t agree with Sarah on everything, there are some things President Obama wanted to do that I wished him success on, but unfortunately he seems to be stuck in a slightly modified version of his predecessor’s presidency.

missingbite's avatar

@Dr_Dredd My point is that nobody knows everything. She needs an education on some things. So did President Obama. That is the reason a lot of his followers are having trouble with him now. He learned quickly that magic talk from a tele-prompter wasn’t enough and he didn’t know everything. Trust me, he is in school now.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@missingbite He seems to have a better attitude about learning than she does.

Jewel's avatar

” I find it amusing that so many think that Sarah Palin is so stupid when they themselves make extreme statements and jump to conclusions which cannot be logically drawn from my post.”

Really? You wrote:

“Personally, I rather admire her”.

“I am probably swimming upstream when I confess that I like her.”

“I think she has a lot of qualities that are undeniably positive in a candidate.”

“She speaks well, dresses very well, is very pretty (to the point which makes me envious), and connects in a “down home” sort of way with a lot of people on social and moral issues.”

“Her initial speeches were very well received….she consistently wowed and energized the Republican base and I think she can do that again.”

YOUR words. You consistantly added qualifiers to gain some wiggle room, but you began each one with a statement of support and approval for her.
You want to like her, feel free. But do not think you have the right to tell the rest of us that we don’t have the right to our own opinion of her and our interpretation of the words you have given us to work with.

Rufus_T_Firefly's avatar

I’m going to keep my fingers crossed that she takes a long walk off a very short pier sometime before the next election. Most of the zombies that I know who voted for the McCain/Caribou Barbie Roadshow only did so because (and I quote) ‘she has a great rack and a nice ass.’ Their words, not mine. Trust me, she has much less effect on someone who prefers facts over fluff and false bravado. Palin’s credibility. Isn’t that an oxymoron?

b's avatar

I think Sarah Palin is an effing retard.

plethora's avatar

@FutureMemory Do you always post before thinking? (I personally think you do) But anyway, if you disagree with the rationale, say so. Don’t fling verbal epithets, at least not at me.

gorillapaws's avatar

@plethora, I don’t want to put words into the mouth of @FutureMemory, but I think he found your comment so funny because Creationism is unscientific BY DEFINITION. Science is defined as dealing exclusively with falsifiable claims. It is impossible to falsify Creationism (and always will be), ergo the verbal epithets.

Personally, I think they should be directed at our education system, for failing to teach basic things like “what is Science”, “what isn’t Science, and could never be.” This is similar to the just a theory misunderstanding as well. Also our media actively promotes these common misconceptions, instead of playing the role of the truth referees, they feel the need to be “fair and balanced” treating both sides as if they had equal merit.

I’m not saying the media shouldn’t be balanced with regards to VALUE propositions (big vs. small government, gun control, shooting wolves from helicopters etc.), but it’s the media’s responsibility to treat factual matters in an objective way.

semblance's avatar

Jewel -

Your attempt at defending yourself does not stand up if anyone objectively reads and analyzes what we have written. Your quotes of my statements prove my point. I said some qualified positive things about Sarah which you recast in hyperbolic terms. People like you are part of the problem in American politics. Everything has to be all or nothing and you attack anyone who you perceive not to be in your corner. I pity you. It must be unpleasant to live with such a prejudiced mind.

mattbrowne's avatar

@missingbite – You said that almost everyone if not all of the left hate her. I strongly disagree. I don’t hate her. I just don’t think she is qualified to run the most powerful country in the world.

mattbrowne's avatar

@plethora – I believe in God (which is indeed a faith statement) and I support the theory of evolution (what we observe is creation in progress).

“Creation science” is a misnomer, because it isn’t based on the widely accepted scientific method. It might be best compared to astrology, witchcraft or numerology. “Intelligent design” (ID) is science, but all its theories have been refuted, such as irreducible complexity. Reputable scientists who are also believers all endorse evolution and they reject creationism and ID. A good example is Kenneth Miller.

Unlike Barack Obama (who is also a believer) Sarah Palin seems to listen to the few rogue scientists who have got no reputation on the international level.

missingbite's avatar

@mattbrowne Thank you for pointing that out. I should not have used the word “hate”. I should have stated that most if not all on the left feel she is not qualified. Most on the right feel she either is or will be. Her qualifications are just as impressive as our current president in my mind.

It is true that she didn’t excel at an Ivy League school. I would argue that it shouldn’t matter. After all Theodore Kaczynski has a degree from Harvard, and a PhD from University of Michigan. He also went on the teach at University of California, Berkeley. We all know where he ended up.

On the other hand lots of people have never graduated college and went on to be great Americans. (Steve Jobs and Bill Gates)

I am in no way comparing any of these people to our President! Or anyone else for that matter. I am simply saying that many people put a lot of credit into a level of education and it doesn’t always measure up.

George Washington had little education and is regarded as one of the best presidents we have had. He had a lot of common sense.

I believe, and this is my opinion, that many on the left feel you need to be a professional politician with an Ivy League degree in order to run the country. I disagree and feel that with a little help Sarah Palin, if she wants too, would make a great leader.

Thanks again for pointing out my over use of the word “hate”.

DarkScribe's avatar

I believe in scientific creationism. We were all created by the scientifically correct way to alleviate sexual tension.

gorillapaws's avatar

@missingbite Your Ted Kaczynski argument is flawed. We’re not saying that being smart is a sufficient condition for being president, we’re saying it’s a necessary one (this should explain it). Also, Gates was a Harvard student before he dropped out to found one of the most successful companies in the history of mankind, I don’t think anyone would dare claim that Gates isn’t smart. Steve Jobs dropped out to found Apple (who does have an honorary degree from Stanford now I believe). I don’t think anyone would argue that Jobs or Gates would be incapable of doing well at the very best universities.

I don’t think you can really consider Palin in the same intellectual league as these people. I don’t think she could ever have gotten into an Ivy League school, and certainly not excelled there. After all, how can you grow up with your father being a science teacher and then not understand basic scientific facts? To me that demonstrates willful ignorance, a trait that seems to be very prevalent among a certain sub-group of conservatives.

mattbrowne's avatar

@missingbite – No problem. Well, not being able to name newspapers like the New York Times or Washington Post was odd, but telling people fruit fly research is a waste of money makes her dangerous to public safety, I’m afraid. Fruit flies allow researchers to make tremendous progress in genetics which will (among other benefits) help doctors develop better treatments for cancer. How can a women who is so concerned about abortion and unborn life hinder scientific progress letting people die who could otherwise be saved?

Actually I don’t think it’s just about left or right. It’s about intellect or no intellect. I bet an evolutionary biologists for example who is also Republican would not want Sarah Palin to be nominated. Same for Republican journalists I guess.

DarkScribe's avatar

If Sarah Palin did a Playboy spread, (courtesy of Photoshop) promised that everybody could have their guns back, (so they could have Moose stew too) to lower the price of ammunition and reduce the tax on beer, tobacco, and pickup trucks, they couldn’t keep her out of office. The sensible voters would be crushed in the stampede to the ballot boxes.

mattbrowne's avatar

@DarkScribe – Reduce the tax of beer? Sarah Palin’s pregnant teenage daughter might have been seduced to sin yet again and drink beer. No way.

missingbite's avatar

@gorillapaws We all know who Gates and Jobs are but thanks for the reminder. My point was that we don’t know what Sarah Palins capabilities are. We will find out. A lot of liberals like to say she is uneducated and that was my point about Ted. He was educated and it got him nowhere. You can call it flawed if you like. Your point about a father being a science teacher theory in my mind is flawed. How many pastors or preachers have kids that grow up to be anti religious?

missingbite's avatar

@mattbrowne Some in other fields are saying the same thing about Obama and his views on the funding of NASA. Are we really still talking about the news paper issue. Why don’t we always mention that Obama said he visited 57 states? Because it was a misspoken statement under pressure. Which he does a lot without a tele-prompter.

gorillapaws's avatar

@missingbite you were the one who brought up Gates and Jobs…

“you can call it flawed if you like.” I’m not calling it flawed, I’m pointing out that it is flawed. You didn’t read the link about necessary and sufficient did you? Let me spell it out a little clearer.

Being smart is necessary to being a good President. This means you can’t be stupid and be a good president (name a president who made stupid decisions and is regarded as a good president).

We’re NOT saying that being smart is a sufficient condition for President. This means that just being smart is not enough to make you a good president, you need to be smart and have a bunch of other traits too (such as not being a reclusive murderer who lives in the woods, being a natural born US citizen, being at least 35-years-old, etc..). I think Palin has many of those other traits (I don’t think she’s a reclusive murder, she’s over 35, she was born in the US, she’s charismatic in her own way, she’s excellent at connecting with people, a few of her political ideas are ok), but I don’t think she’s particularly smart—she certainly hasn’t demonstrated it if she is.

The preacher example is a bit harder to dissect because the logic is more complex (and it seems you’ve been struggling with these basic logical concepts). Essentially, the more someone knows about Science, the more they realize that it’s correct. This is also true of Mathematics, Logic, Engineering, and other similar disciplines. It’s excusable if someone doubts any particular mathematical principle if they don’t know anything about it. However, if someone’s been taught (to the point that they fully understand it) the mathematical proof that demonstrates that it’s true and then continues to doubt that it’s true then it’s not ok (we would say that that person is being willfully ignorant).

Not all subjects work that way. Religion is one such subject. I’m NOT saying that any particular religion is right or wrong, or that God does or doesn’t exist, that’s not the point. The point is that learning more about a religion doesn’t guarantee that it will be “proven” correct to you. For example, I’ve studied Buddhism fairly extensively, and came away liking the religion less than when I started.

FutureMemory's avatar

@plethora, I don’t want to put words into the mouth of @FutureMemory, but I think he found your comment so funny because Creationism is unscientific BY DEFINITION.

Thanks @gorillapaws, I didn’t bother to look at this thread after my last post. Assuming you continue to make as much sense as you have in this thread, you can speak for me anytime :).

Response moderated
plethora's avatar

@FutureMemory @gorillapaws Can’t figure out which of you made the comment. Nothing is unscientific by definition. The scientific method as it applies to evolution and creation means there is an attempt to verify the assertions of each by observable physical evidence. They are both subject to the scientific method whether the physical evidence supports their assertions or not.

gorillapaws's avatar

@plethora Please describe an experiment that could falsify creationism.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

This country elected George W. Bush president for a second term. It is impossible to underestimate the American electorate, in my opinion. Sarah Palin is simply GW in a skirt. Like him, she is willfully ignorant, and proud of it. Of course she has a chance at becoming a serious national candidate again.

plethora's avatar

@gorillapaws Both evolution and creation begin with a faith assertion. The evolutionist believes there is no God. The creationist believes there is a God. Neither the existence or non-existence of God can be proven or even subject to the scientific method. The evolutionist then (and no value judgement here) must construct a system that exists independently of any actions by a God.

The creationist must construct a system that assumes and takes into account the existence of a God.

The Big Bang Theory is a good example to cite. Basically, the theory says that the entire universe came into being in a nanosecond (or less). Some Force caused the Big Bang. The evolutionist does not know who or what the force is, but acknowledges that it is a force and it caused an action.

The creationist says the Force was God himself creating the universe.

But we are back to faith assumptions. The evolutionist is going to explain all that comes after in terms that deny the existence of a God.

The creationist is going to see the precision of our universe in all its variations as an indicator of intelligent design by God.

I will refer you here

This source is quite reliable, but will mean little to the person who has made the faith assertion that there is no God.

I cannot describe an experiment that would falsify creation because I believe all of the relevant scientific data points to intelligent design by a Creator, as do a host of scientists, one of which I am not. But I am an informed layman.

gorillapaws's avatar

@plethora “the evolutionist believes there is no God.” This is false. Many evolutionists believe in the existence of God (including the Catholic Church)—I’m personally on the fence (about the existence of God…not evolution). As I pointed out above, I believe you’re confusing abiogenesis with evolution.

Abiogenesis is the theory about how life sprang out of nowhere. Science doesn’t really have a conclusive answer for this (nobody can produce life from inorganic molecules in a lab for example).

Evolution is the theory about how life has changed over time into the diversity of species we see today. There is 150 years of research, observation, experimentation, DNA sequencing, all demonstrating that evolution is as much of a fact as you’re ever going to find.

To address your “faith assertion” argument: you are using the term “faith” in 2 very different ways but presenting them as if they’re equivalent. Here’s an example to better illustrate the point: Bill has faith that the bridge won’t collapse because he trusts it was engineered well, Sam has faith that it won’t collapse because there are invisible turtles stacked up underneath it that hold it up. Both are “faith based statements” and therefore both are equally legitimate. See the problem? Bill is using the word faith in the context of evidence, whereas Sam’s using the word faith in the spiritual “blind” sense. Your argument makes this same logical error.

Many people believe that studying Science brings them closer to God. Consider this: what if evolution is simply the manifestation of God’s will? What if the Big Bang was God “letting there be light?” Some believe that by learning how our universe functions we get a window into the “mind of God.” Furthermore, evolution deniers, are actually denying the will of God and are therefore blaspheming.

Assuming God exists, the only way for Evolution to be false is if God deliberately wants to deceive us into thinking it’s real, and honestly, if God really does turn out to be a deceptive asshole, than I think I’d prefer Hell to hanging out with a dickhead like that for eternity.

Oh and the reason you can’t describe an experiment that would disprove creationism, is because Creationism isn’t a testable theory and is therefore NOT SCIENCE by definition. Just like a bowling ball isn’t an elephant.

mattbrowne's avatar

@missingbite – Of course no one is perfect. Barack Obama isn’t perfect. But his level of education is way higher than that of Sarah Palin. Objectively. The Republican party got plenty of smart and well-educated people. Sarah Palin just isn’t among them. I’ve got great respect for Colin Powell for example. Very smart and honorable person.

mattbrowne's avatar

@plethora – Please don’t confuse the notion of creating existence as such (which obviously resulted in at least one orderly universe) with creating homo sapiens. Evolution is a result of our orderly universe. It’s remarkable for example that nucleosynthesis creates an abundance of carbon while this chemical element also has got enormous flexibility. Interstellar space is full of complex molecules. Why would God create the natural laws and then at some point mess with them during the development of species on planet Earth using some kind of magic wand? The natural laws are so powerful, they allow carbon-based life.

And please stop making statements like ‘evolutionists believe there is no God’. It’s not true and I find this mildly offensive. Some evolutionists don’t believe in God.

Evolution is a scientific theory, not an atheist theory. Most educated Christians support evolution, at least in Europe. Rejecting evolution makes Christians really look very foolish. If you lack the knowledge about evolution and want to understand how the belief in God and the support of evolution is possible I recommend the following book:

missingbite's avatar

My point in all of this, and most people have missed, is that education means nothing IF your intentions are wrong. You can have, and we have had, a President without an education that has great intentions and makes a great leader. We have also had the opposite. Level of education means something but not everything. My stance on Sarah Palin is that nobody really knows what she is capable of. Level of education aside. If she is willfully ignorant she won’t make it. I don’t think she is.

Obama is an elitist and the american public, who will be voting, is sick of be treated like Obama is this brilliantly educated person who knows what is best for them.

Sarah Palin only has to prove the ability to learn the world stage and she will be a force to be dealt with because she connects with, as Bill Maher puts it, the ignorant american public to stupid to know better.

Sarah Palin my be uneducated by Ivy league standards but she is far from stupid and is very capable of the national stage, which is what the OP question was about.

mattbrowne's avatar

@missingbite – Well, in case of Palin both her education is wrong and her intentions are wrong like preaching creationism in science classes or removing sex education from the curriculum.

Obama is many things, but the one thing he isn’t is ‘elitist’. He got high-paying job offers from Wall Street after graduation and he chose to become a community organizer in Chicago. People might call this elitist. I call this down to earth and close to blue-collar people. Question: Have you read his book ‘The Audacity of Hope’ ?

Response moderated
missingbite's avatar

@mattbrowne Those are her opinions. There are millions of people who think sex education should be taught at home. Sex ed is a no win situation. If you teach abstinence, some will complain. If you teach protection, some will complain. Why can’t parents teach it to their children the way they want too. Oh that’s right, the school system and government can do everything better. I hardly doubt she could change the school curriculum anyway even though it is badly broken. Let’s face it, the US is way behind in education.

I have not read all of ‘The Audacity of Hope’ only exerts so I am no real judge. I know it’s a feel good book with the title coming from a sermon of a man who likes to say GD America. Do I believe much of what he says? No. He is another politician that tells you what you want to hear. I strongly think he is an elitist. Those are my opinions. In the last health care debate he took the time to remind Senator McCain, the election is over, you lost. What an ass! Although I’m sure some will say McCain asked for it. Also ridiculous.

Obama believe that we should “redistribute wealth” and that in a lot of people mind is elitist. Who the hell is he to say how much I or anyone else should be worth.

Obviously we have fundamental differences that won’t change. Again, the question was could Sarah Palin make it to the national stage. I say yes and you “hope” no. I’m not saying Sarah Palin is right on everything, but her core beliefs are closer to most americans and polar opposite of Obama.

augustlan's avatar

[mod says] Personal attacks are not permitted and have been removed.

plethora's avatar

@gorillapaws @mattbrowne Without malice, gentlemen, consistency in one’s thought process is really important to me. You are both deeply entrenched in your views. My initial comment matt, was don’t throw stones at the other side. I’m not here to convince you, simply to ask that you not deride that about which you apparently know little.

susanc's avatar

@semblance – I apologize. It was rhetoric took me by the throat. Also, yes, it’s my icky
classism talking. I still don’t think she can manage the big job. Not suave enough for international.

gorillapaws's avatar

@missingbite “Sex ed is a no win situation.” Just because people will complain either way doesn’t mean there’s not a winner. We could come cure cancer and some people would find something to complain about. I think we can all agree that causing fewer unwanted pregnancies is a good thing (especially for people so concerned with the lives of unborn fetuses).

@plethora ” not deride that about which you apparently know little.” You’re presuming that I don’t know about the creationist position which isn’t true at all—I’m quite familiar with most of the bogus arguments they’ve made in their attempt to generate controversy where none actually exists. I’m not trying to force any belief on you or anyone else, but I am trying to make the point that not believing in evolution isn’t the same thing as disagreeing about the morality of the death penalty, or the legalization of drugs, or tax cuts, it’s in the same league as not believing the Holocaust happened.

Can you imagine if Obama said he didn’t believe the Holocaust was real and then pointed to neo-Nazi propaganda as evidence for those beliefs? And then the media decided that instead of questioning this belief and pointing out how it’s factually wrong, they decide that they need to be balanced and show both sides of the argument equally to be fair and “unbiased?” Now take it a step further and imagine if this movement started to stack local school boards with people who believed this, and they wanted to have both sides of the argument for and against the existence of the Holocaust written into history textbooks in public schools. They teach “both sides” and let the kids decide for themselves. There is more evidence supporting evolution than there is for the existence of the Holocaust, and yet we’re seeing this pattern happen—I hope you can appreciate why it’s so terrifying.

It’s a bigger problem than just evolution too, we’re seeing it happen with Vaccine denial (and they’re typically “liberals”—so it’s not a right vs. left bias at all that worries me). Larry King puts Jenny McCarthy on primetime and she blathers on about how vaccines cause Autism, and she gets equal time as a panel of real Doctors who study immunology for their entire careers who have concrete evidence proving that it doesn’t. Because of her efforts (and others like her) there are now outbreaks of diseases once virtually extinct in the US, that are now infecting and even killing some children. There’s a current of anti-intellectualism running through our culture that’s just fundamentally whacko—and scary. I get equally upset when liberals try to bend facts to support their political agendas too (second-hand smoke for example).

And I’m not some Science zealot either, I find it dry and tedious in many respects. I would be just as passionate if a group were trying to re-write history books, or math books etc. It’s not about the content, it’s about our culture treating people with radical beliefs that contradict all known evidence as a “legitimate opinion.”

missingbite's avatar

@gorillapaws I agree that people will complain no matter what. I just wish that more families would step up and take control of subjects like sex ed. We always have and always will have unwanted pregnancies. What we need is more family participation in their kids education. One of the biggest problems with sex ed in schools is that we have no idea where to stop. Do we teach homosexuality in schools? Do we teach trans gender sex ed in schools? Sex ed isn’t a subject like spelling or math. (which we have a hard enough time with) In my opinion, there are to many variables in the subject. Leave it at home.

gorillapaws's avatar

@missingbite I agree that more families should step up. That statement though indicates you believe that there are some families who aren’t doing a good job. If we don’t teach sex ed in schools, and some parents aren’t doing it at home (as your statement infers), how will those kids learn how to be safe? With the prevalence of STD’s out there this is actually potentially life-saving knowledge, why would we want to withhold that from them?

I don’t think it’s necessary to teach gender theory in high school, but giving them the knowledge about how certain diseases are spread (some can be spread even with condoms), and the various methods of birth control (including abstinence), how they’re used and their efficacy will help people make better decisions and save lives. Bringing this back to Palin, since you believe that this subject is ultimately the responsibility of the parent, how much blame should we place on her and her husband for Bristol’s underaged, premarital pregnancy?

mattbrowne's avatar

@missingbite – I’m aware that there are millions of people who think sex education should be taught at home. In my opinion it’s a risky approach. Bad parenting is widespread and in those cases no or bad sex education will lead to more unwanted pregnancies. Your and my opinion about Obama is different and that’s fine. This is what democracy is all about.

mattbrowne's avatar

@plethora -

Baruch Spinoza was a Dutch philosopher of Portuguese Jewish origin. He is considered one of the great rationalists of 17th-century philosophy, laying the groundwork for the 18th century Enlightenment. One of his greatest quotes is this:

“I have made a ceaseless effort not to ridicule, not to bewail, not to scorn human actions, but to understand them.”

So when it comes to evolution deniers I really try hard to avoid ridicule. Although I have not yet succeeded in changing the mind of even one evolution denier, I have still learned a lot during some of the debates. It has helped me to get a better understanding.

A few things I learned. Many creationists think

1) Unexplained means inexplicable
2) Evolution is an atheist theory
3) Accepting evolution will force them to give up their religion and their belief in God
4) Humans lose their special place in the living world
5) We can’t observe evolution today, for example in a lab

All 5 statements are wrong.

I’m sure other Flutherites have asked themselves what are the reasons for evolution denial. I think this part is key. Ritual bashings won’t get us anywhere.

99.99% of all people in the world who know something about science do accept evolution as the best currently available theory to explain the history of life and how life works today. Some are believers.

Accepting evolution helps us fight diseases like influenza and cancer. If nobody today supported evolution millions and millions of sick people would die. Fruit fly research saves lives. Understanding evolution saves lives. Every day. Every year.

So, @plethora unless you can show me some credentials that makes you knowledgeable in science (your profile doesn’t show any) stop telling other Flutherites that they apparently know little about the subject or are entrenched in their views. I find those comments offensive.

mattbrowne's avatar

@gorillapaws – Kudos for your elaborate answers above !

DarkScribe's avatar

God – is this still going?

She has boobs, a reasonably attractive face, an intellect and financial backing. Of course she has a chance.

missingbite's avatar

@mattbrowne @gorillapaws It looks like we agree on something! We all three agree that sex ed is needed. I can also agree that there is a lot of bad parenting. Now where we differ, and this is huge, is that we have to turn the tide on the government taking care of us. We can’t keep going toward a nanny state with social programs. It seems that most liberals think, well if the parents aren’t doing it let’s give it to the schools and dump more money into education. That is where Sarah Palin and most conservative differ. WE CAN“T PAY FOR IT ALL! Sorry for raising my voice but where do we stop. This county is riddled with social programs and our current government from both sides is to crate more. We can’t sustain it financially. I’m not saying it’s easy and I don’t have all the answers but I don’t believe more social programs will work.

Now, liberals will say it’s more expensive in the long run to do nothing. And they may be right. But they may be wrong. I do know we can’t keep paying for the social programs we have now. There has to be some sort of personal responsibility involved.

It’s like a kid getting their first car. If they had to work for it, they usually take care of it better than if they were just given it. I’m sure someone will tell me my logic is flawed, but it is what it is.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@missingbite Well, if the parents aren’t going to do sex education, and you don’t want the schools doing it, then who will? I get it that you want people to take more responsibility, but there needs to be a back-up system in place, too. Otherwise my insurance premiums are going to go up to help pay for STDs in young kids, where they may have been preventable.

missingbite's avatar

@Dr_Dredd I wish I had an answer. I don’t. Like I said before, I don’t have the answer but I know we can’t keep paying for social programs. The family has to have an interest possibly including financial. If we keep going in the direction we are headed, all americans will be paying massive tax rates and the government does everything. I think that is wrong. Many don’t. I freely admit that it’s a tough topic and I am not prepared to answer it. I wish I could.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

@missingbite True. It doesn’t have any easy answers. I respect you for seeing that.

Rufus_T_Firefly's avatar

@Dr_Dredd – Well… we COULD easily afford the social programs that we actually need, such as universal healthcare and sex education, IF we were to cut out ALL Congressional pork-barrel projects, cut the Pentagon’s budget back to more realistic levels and spend a lot less (to be read as zero funding) on unnecessary wars and police actions. However, I agree with you completely on the need for sex education. We’ve got to have some kind of system in place to prepare kids for the inevitable sexual encounter and for life down the road.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

@Rufus_T_Firefly; I agree wholeheartedly. And knowing Dr_Dredd, I’m sure she doesn’t disagree.

gorillapaws's avatar

@missingbite “Now, liberals will say it’s more expensive in the long run to do nothing.” You make a good point here. The difference in cost between teaching abstinence only Sex Ed and a more thorough education is essentially zero. The school will still have to be open whether they’re teaching either type of Sex Ed, the PE/Health teachers will still be paid whether they’re teaching either type of Sex Ed, the textbooks will still be bought whether they cover abstinence only or not. There’s no savings there.

On the other side of the equation is the COST of treating people with diseases that may have been prevented had the participants been better educated. I did a quick Google, and came up with 12.3 billion dollars spent by the federal government in 2006 to treat HIV/AIDS medicaid patients pdf link. The numbers are a little dated, but I’m sure the 2010 costs are probably similar. I realize that this number won’t drop to 0 just by improving Sex Ed, but it cost an average of $600,000 over the lifetime of an AIDS paitent for medical care, so even if you save a small percentage, that’s HUGE savings in the long haul. It just makes fiscal sense to spend 0 dollars in order to save millions (possibly billions)—which is exactly what your intuition told you.

I actually consider myself a fiscal conservative in the sense that I believe the Government needs to make cost-effective choices. I was furious when the Republicans drove up the deficits during the Bush administration. And when Dick Chenney said that “deficits don’t matter.” Take a look at this graph and you tell me which party is more fiscally responsible. What conservatives really mean when they jingle their tea-bags and say “we need to cut spending” is we need to cut liberal programs; they have demonstrated over the past 30 years that they have no reservation at all about spending on conservative programs.

Taking it back to Palin you claim ”[cutting spending] is where Sarah Palin and most conservative differ.” When you look at the facts, it just isn’t true. Palin hired lobbyists while mayor of Wasilla that managed to secure 14 earmarks worth $27million dollars for her town. She spent millions to build a massive sports park for the town that left it in huge debt. I hate to burst your bubble, but Republicans love to spend money too, they just like to talk about cuts when other people are in charge.

mattbrowne's avatar

@missingbite – There is a lot of common ground between conservatives and liberals, especially among moderate ones and I consider myself to be a moderate liberal who also believes in family values, in discipline, in hard work, in delayed gratification, in the need to protect our freedom against religious fundamentalists (sometimes using force to deal with threats like Al-Qaeda). I also think there are many great Republicans and when I really admire people then it doesn’t matter whether he or she is liberal or conservative. My view on Sarah Palin has to do with Sarah Palin and what she knows and what she has to say.

Yes, we can pay for universal health care. It’s a challenge but it can be done. The US has got a slightly higher income per capita than Germany (my country) and Germany does have health insurance for everyone. The system works if we eliminate greed like people trying to avoid taxes at all cost when they could actually afford it to pay taxes and would still enjoy a good life.

One thing that would make the US health system more affordable is to greatly reduce the culture of absurd malpractice lawsuits. Doctors will never be perfect. It’s human. Most doctors do their best and they do the right thing in 99% of all cases. There will always be a few black sheep but the number of those lawsuits suggests that far too many doctors are black sheep. Which I just cannot believe.

Dr_Dredd's avatar

Thank you, @mattbrowne. Yes, according to lawyers and politicians, doctors are bad and evil and need to be reined in. Honestly, if I was really only in it for the money, I wouldn’t have chosen medicine as a career. There are easier ways to do it.

missingbite's avatar

@mattbrowne I agree 100% with your last post. Tort reform is one of the biggest things we need in the health care bill. Unfortunately it is not there. Obama mentioned last week that he liked the idea and we could look into it. It must be there.

I am all for health care reform. What I don’t want is a federal government forcing me or anyone to buy health care. That is a slippery slope when the government tells us we have to buy something and I believe that is what Obama wants.

He and others have said all along it won’t work unless everyone is involved by buying health care. I think that is unconstitutional. Yes we are required to buy car insurance but we are not forced to buy a car. We don’t have to drive but we have to live.

What will be next?

mattbrowne's avatar

@missingbite – If you’re interested check out this article:

Of course our system isn’t without problems either. Above all, there are demographic challenges and the tremendous progress in medicine. But all low income earners and unemployed do have health insurance. Unless you are self employed with a certain minimum yearly income you must be insured in Germany. This means if you get employment and earn less than a certain maximum you must have this insurance and pay half of it (the other half is paid by the employer).

More than 30 million uninsured Americans is so wrong. So wrong. In the early 60ies JFK talked about sending Americans to the moon. Many people had doubts because the effort would be very expensive. It was accomplished. I think ambitious space travel programs are far more challenging than giving people the health insurance they need. Go for it. America can do this.

Taciturnu's avatar

As a registered Independent, I have voted both liberally and conservatively.

Sarah Palin… sigh People liked her for only one of two reasons- a) she’s militantly conservative in every way shape and form, or b) she’s hot.

I hope she never gets on a ticket. She really ruined my contentedness of either Obama or McCain leading us. Her stances on social issues seemed to all come out of the dark ages, and she misspoke on major topics one too many times for my liking.

For the Republicans? I’d love to see Giuliani run again, and this time put some effort in. I think he could win it, and do a good job in office!

Rufus_T_Firefly's avatar

Rudy Giuliani has never been a fountain of consistency either. If the Repugs were to pair Rudy and Caribou Barbie on the same ticket, the only things it would guarantee would be political anti-matter, a disinformation campaign the likes of which we’ve never seen before and voter anathema. None of those could be considered progress.

Taciturnu's avatar

@Rufus_T_Firefly I certainly understand where you’re coming from. However, it is my thought that RG changed some of his views over time as he gained experience. I have changed some of my political views over time as well. (After all, it wouldn’t be considered progress to never re-think your stances, and keep up with the times, right? ) ;)

Rufus_T_Firefly's avatar

@Taciturnu – It might be nice if Rudy bothered to sort out all the facts before speaking them aloud in public, though. And, of course, I would rather that ANY politician speak along the lines of truth, rather than just echoing party lines or sentiment.

Taciturnu's avatar

@Rufus_T_Firefly I agree! It’s important to take any politician’s words with a grain of salt (followed by a personal fact finding mission) because when they speak, it’s almost always slanted in their favor. Unfortunately, most of these politicians’ constituents want party lines, or they would be more likely to vote for someone outside of the two party system we have.

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