I’m not sure why colonial Americans thought they could succeed at blowing off the British to make their own country or countries, but that they needed to do something was obvious to a lot of people during the middle of the 18th century. In the end, it would turn out that the American Revolution was a little like a lot of other things that have happened in history (and prehistory): Very unlikely to have come out the way it did, because at so many junctures something quirky or unlikely happened, and shaped the course of events significantly. It might have been inevitable that the British living in the Americas would try out the whole Revolution thing, but once it got going there was no reason to expect it to work, and in fact it failed badly at many points. Many of the most important successes that would eventually be strung together in the post-hoc narrative we now tell as our country’s origin story were actually very lucky breaks.

For example, the British had under-staffed a fort in New York, the Hessians in Trenton were hungover and unprepared for a sneak attack, and a good number of the British forces directed to what would become the Battle of Saratoga never arrived for utterly stupid reasons. These unplanned circumstances led to the first substantive victory of the war in Boston, a turning point for Washington’s army that would allow the war to continue after a series of defeats, and of course, a Colonial victory in most important battle of this or almost any historically known war.

These details are important.

It would appear that Sarah Palin thinks differently. You’ve seen the YouTube video of her explaining that Paul Revere’s ride was all about warning the British that the Americans would have none of their shenanigans. You’ve probably read about how she later defended this mistake, insisting that she was not wrong about American History. Paul Revere was shouting his message to the British, who were the oppressors of the Americans, to warn them off, according to her.

When I saw the video of her butchering the facts about what happened in Boston, Cambridge, Lexington and Concord and other communities in April of 1775, and I saw her empty eyes, windows to a vacuous skull, and heard her empty pallid words and non-meaningful utterances modulated on her fake good-ol’-girl accent, I became rather enraged.

You see, most Americans know something about the Revolution, and to the extent that they don’t know stuff, most Americans are content to live with a vague outline in mind, to know that there are a few places, names, events, that signify and that others know the story well and can fill the rest of us in when necessary. Valley Forge, Boston Tea Party, “One if by land, two if by sea” (even if you don’t know which it turned out to be), The Green Mountain Boys, Yorktown … But some Americans are special. Quite a few of them. Me for instance. And my friend Leslie who is a college teacher re-orienting her American History class to “… focus on American history and historical memory, with an emphasis on the political uses of history … Particularly fertile ground in the midst of the rise of the tea party and the 150th anniversary of the Civil War.”

Leslie has a special knowledge because she’s a history professor. I could claim specialness because I’ve actually done a fair amount of archaeology of actual Revolutionary War sites. But I’d rather claim specialness simply because I lived there. I lived in more than one domicile a short walk from Paul Revere’s route. When friends and relatives came to visit, I’d be a tour guide. I’d show them where the shot was fired and heard around the world, I’d show them the graves of some of the dead from that day, the reconstructed bridge across which colonial and brit gazed moments before the start of that particular battle. I’d show them where the British burned that barn, and where the Colonists mounted (some time later) the cannon stolen from upstate New York to drive the British out of Boston. I’d show them Paul Revere’s house and this old church in the North End famous for being the site of an 18th century attempt at human flight, which did not go too well. Oh, and that’s where they hung the lanterns to signal Revere. The British intended, it seems, to travel “by sea” to Charlestown which was in those days much farther from Boston than it is now (owing to landfill and bridges) and then on to the outlying regions. Revere and about 40 others spread across the countryside whispering “The Regulars are coming out” or words to that effect.

Whispering. To their allies.

Sarah Palin thinks that Revere rode across the countryside shouting “The British are Coming” … which would have been funny because most of the people living there were British (as almost all the immigrants calling themselves Americans were at the time in Massachusetts). Revere, who was British, did not shout. He did not ring bells. For every few potential rebels in the colonial countryside there was certainly a Tory, a loyalist, who would have turned him in or tried to stop him. Paul Revere was trying desperately to NOT “warn the British” of anything. The whole operation was a secret, and the secrecy was the key to its success. When Revere was captured by the British and they wanted to know what was going on, he lied to them in order to trick them into moving their soldiers to where the colonists wanted them to be. Even in their hands, he did not warn them. Even in their hands he did not ring any bells. Sarah Palin isn’t even a little wrong. She’s totally incorrect and does not care that she has described one of the most important events in our country’s history in a way that has no bearing whatsoever on what actually happened. And she is wrong shamelessly.

So I consider myself special along with several other million people because when I was a kid, I walked on the very ground where Benjamin Franklin walked to meet with others and draft the Albany Plan of the Union, the first document linked to what would later become the Continental Congress. I’ve sat at the same bar at which Ethan Allen sat, eaten in the same restaurant where Revere and his mates ate. Once, looking over some old documents, I found myself holding a piece of paper with the signature of a local bureaucrat by the name of John Hancock. The signature looked exactly like the one on the Declaration of Independence. Actually, that happened twice.

When I was thirteen years old I got a summer job that turned into a life-long career in archaeology, and we excavated the home of the Captain Henry Quackenbush, who was in command of the Fifth Albany Militia, the Colonial unit at Saratoga that took control of the prisoner General John Burgoyne, leader of the British Army, defeated at Saragota. I sat many times in the shade provided inside the abandoned and gutted brick house, on the 16 inch wide planks flooring the very room in which the general slept the night before he was turned over to the colonial leaders. Eating a sandwich. (I was eating the sandwich, not General Burgoyne.)

I’m special, along with millions of others because I’ve sat stalled in traffic in the roundabout in west Cambridge during rush hour imagining Paul Revere galloping by on his horse, and I’ve fished off the piers in the shadow of the fort taken by cannon stolen from a different fort in another state near which I also fished off the pier, and I’ve driven dozens of times along the road that traces the route connecting them, the old Indian trail along which Benedict Arnold and Ethan Allen dragged those stolen cannons. I’m special because I’ve stood on the deck of the USS Constitution looking in the general direction of Breeds Hill, from which the Battle of Bunker hill was observed and described by what would pass for the Adventure Tourists of the 18th century. I’ve picnicked on the battle field at Saratoga. I sat at General Philip Schuyler’s desk, in his country home, the one with the fields burned by the general’s wife so the British could not use the food, and I’ve excavated with a backhoe the same general’s garden later turned into one of the first Jewish immigrant neighborhoods in the decades after the Revolution, where I found a layer of wood shavings from the construction of the brick and wood homes sitting on top of the clay from the 10,000 year old bed of Glacial Lake Albany. The Revolutionary Era bracketed between momentous events, to be sure.

And, I did all these things knowing that I was doing them. I knew that this history was there; I did not ignore it or assume it to be unimportant. My involvement in historical archaeology and historic preservation probably gave me a better sense than the average Upstate New Yorker or Bostonian may have had, but I assure you that the average high school graduate living in Charlestown, Massachusetts knows that they live on or near the site of the Battle of Bunker Hill … they can’t miss it. You should see the monument!

Sarah Palin can see Russia from her Living room. Well, the people of Boston and Albany and all those other old colonial cities of the east coast can see the figurative ghosts of the American Revolution everywhere around them. Everywhere. All the time. And those with an interest in knowing more can know more and get most of the facts right and serve as impromptu tour guides for the cousins visiting from Ohio. And, they can recognize that while they sense and know of the momentously important physical presence of the most important thing that ever happened in their town’s history, they may not know the details. So they admit that, direct an interested party to the sign hanging on the church or mounted next to the grave, or to a book, or a person who does know.

But they don’t fly down from Alaska where nothing having to do with the founding of this country ever happened, make things up about those interesting times, and then insist the goodness of their americanness must mean that the crap that came flying out of some nether orifice passes for some kind of ponderous truth. Because it doesn’t.

Why does Sarah Palin hate the truth? And why does Sarah Palin hate America?

_________________________

Added: It is my understanding that operatives working for Palin have been trying to revise the wikipedia entry on Paul Revere’s adventure to match Palin’s blathering, and have been visiting blogs like this one laying down an increasingly sophisticated set of talking-point looking paragraphs that attempt to bridge Palin’s diarrheal rhetoric with actual history. In order to put a somewhat finer point on this post, and to provide some context to those comments accumulating below, I’ve added the YouTube video here:

She is obviously stoned on something. Now, having seen that, enjoy the PalinApologist drek unfolding below.

Comments

  1. #1 Sondrah
    June 6, 2011

    I loved that your passion was felt with every word I read. I don’t think Sarah Palin hates America, but I do think she was wrong and an idiot. God forbid anyone ask her about U.S. involvement in Liberia. That would be amusing.

  2. #2 Brit
    June 6, 2011

    A tea party advert on the banner above this post is a little surreal.

  3. #3 Nemo
    June 6, 2011

    Sarah Palin and I certainly have different views of what America is, and I don’t hesitate to say that she hates my America, as I do hers. I like to think mine is more based in reality, but then, she probably tells herself the same thing.

  4. #4 JASPER COTTON
    June 6, 2011

    SORRY, I’M CONFUSED, WE ALL KNOW YOU HAD TO BE TALKING ABOUT OBAMA. NO ONE HATES AMERICA MORE THAN HE AND HIS!

    SARAH PALIN AND FAMILY ACTUALLY WORKED FOR A LIVING. OBAMA OPENLY CLAIMS WE ARE THE ENEMY.

  5. #5 JASPER COTTON
    June 6, 2011

    OBAMA VOTERS ARE JUST LIKE OPRAH FANS, YOU ALL WANT SOMETHING FOR NOTHING. YOU LIBERALS EXIST AT OTHERS EXPENSE. YOU TRULY ARE “EGG SUCKING DOGS”, AND OBAMA IS A DEGENERATE PAGAN MUSLIM LOVER HOPING AGAINST HOPE TO DESTROY THE HANDS THAT HAVE FED HE AND HIS.

  6. #6 Jack Feller
    June 6, 2011

    I can’t believe CBS News gives her new movie a thumbs up!!

    Palin: Is “The Undefeated” Running for President?
    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504564_162-20069135-504564.html

    What is wrong with these fools?

    And now Chris Wallace (son of the venerated Mike Wallace!!) at Rethuglican Faux News thinks she is “presidential” or something!!
    Chris Wallace After Palin Interview: First Time I Ever Thought ‘This Women Is A Serious Candidate’
    http://www.mediaite.com/tv/chris-wallace-after-palin-interview-first-time-i-ever-thought-this-women-is-a-serious-candidate/

    and former Democratic Chairman GOV. HOWARD DEAN, M.D. thinks she can beat our greatest bi-racial president, EVER!!
    Howard Dean warns Sarah Palin could beat Obama in 2012
    http://thehill.com/homenews/campaign/164765-howard-dean-warns-palin-could-beat-obama-in-2012

    Is there something in the water inside the beltway?!

  7. #7 Doyle
    June 6, 2011

    When I first heard about this latest demonstration of Palin’s ignorance, I reflected that her knowledge of American history falls short of what mine was in 4th grade. This was followed by two related thoughts. The first was that perhaps being in grade school during the 1976 bicentennial craze gave me a greater knowledge of history than most children have these days. This thought was immediately followed by the realization that Sarah Palin is only a year or two older than I am. So she too should know more about the American Revolution than your average 5th grader. Instead, she knows less about it after running for VPOTUS than I did before hitting puberty. It boggles my mind that there exist people who actually admire this woman.

  8. #8 kderosa
    June 6, 2011

    Paul Revere was trying desperately to NOT “warn the British” of anything. The whole operation was a secret, and the secrecy was the key to its success.

    Exactly right. Until he was captured. And then he gave the British regulars who captured him plenty of warnings that the colonists would soon be resisting their attempts to seize the munitions at Concord and to capture Sam Adams and Hancock.

    See Paul Revere’s Ride (Fischer), pp. 129-137.

    And let’s not also forget that while Revere’s, and the other rider’s, intent was to be stealthy to not get caught so that he could warn as many colonists as possible so that they could sound the general alarm, which in 18th century fashion would be the ringing of bells, the shooting of guns,a nd lighting of beacons. That also is a fair interpretation of Palin’s extemporaneous remarks by the way.

  9. #9 John Swindle
    June 6, 2011

    Well done, Greg.

    I think one of the things that goes into a person’s fitness to lead is the ability to admit an error.

    One of these days, someone in her entourage is going to tell her that admitting an error would make her look less stupid.

    I bet she’ll reject that advice.

  10. #10 Ethan Siegel
    June 6, 2011

    How can you be trusted to do anything if you cannot be trusted to admit when you are wrong?

  11. #11 Greg laden
    June 6, 2011

    Kderosa, you are closer than palindrome but you don’t quite have it right. And no, palin was not close. She was stunningly wrong.

  12. #12 willegge
    June 6, 2011

    Well well well. We do know who hates the great America that has blessed the world and it sure is not Sarah Palin. Obama is first in line for that one. How can you lie about the historical facts that Sarah Palin told. She is 100% correct. Paul Revere did warn the British. Read the historical account and watch on YouTube the short educational film called, ‘The Ride” the story of Paul Revere a short educational film. You are an arrogant and sad bunch indeed.

  13. #13 Tree
    June 6, 2011

    This is the most passionately patriotic post I have ever read.

    Nothing much beats standing in those spots (which should be sacred to our memory and not just photo ops for celebrities) and feeling the layers of history.

    Unless it’s standing on the deck of the Constitution and asking the docent if there are nuclear weapons on board.

    Because. You know.

    The Navy can neither confirm nor deny the presence of nuclear weapons on any ship.

    If it’s not sacred, you can’t be irreverent.

  14. #14 Ron Hager
    June 6, 2011

    Over 50 years ago when I was in high school in a small town in northern Wisconsin the assembly / study hall had the following quote in large letters emblazoned on the walls of that hall. Clearly Sarah Palin (and her followers Jasper Cotton, Willege, etc.) are great fools and I will most assuredly shun them and will laud others who do the same.

    “He who knows not and knows not he knows not: he is a fool – shun him. He who knows not and knows he knows not: he is simple – teach him. He who knows and knows not he knows: he is asleep – wake him. He who knows and knows he knows: he is wise – follow him.”

  15. #15 feralboy12
    June 6, 2011

    What “historical account” should I read, Willegge? The one on Wikipedia that Palin followers tried to change to bring it in line with her statement?
    I suspect at least a few around the glove would disagree with the notion that “America has blessed the world.” Of course, I’m sure you would call them arrogant for having their own viewpoint, you fuck.

  16. #16 Bill
    June 6, 2011

    To be fair, Palin was talking about a different Paul Revere – you know, the one who rode through Concord, NH, warning the British that the colonists were putting copper on the bottom of their saucepans. Whole different deal.

  17. #17 kderosa
    June 6, 2011

    Kderosa, you are closer than palindrome but you don’t quite have it right. And no, palin was not close. She was stunningly wrong.

    This would be a much more persuasive assertion if it were backed up with an argument. I think I know why it wasn’t backed up.

  18. #18 Greg laden
    June 6, 2011

    You could bother to read the post. Oh and palindrome is palin. Damn autocorrect

  19. #19 kderosa
    June 6, 2011

    I did read the post, it was silent as to a refutation of my point. Why don’t go go ahead and explain it to me. I would greatly appreciate receiving an explanantion of your greater knowledge.

  20. #20 dhogaza
    June 6, 2011

    kderosa:

    Why don’t go go ahead and explain it to me.

    Palin claimed that warning the British was the point, the intention, of the ride. That this was the task Revere was charged with fulfilling.

    Which is, of course, false.

    When he was stopped by the British, he extemporaneously told them 500 militia were on the way, a little lie as it turns out. Sort of like a kid telling a bully “10 of my friends are on their way to kick your ass if you continue to kick dirt in my face!”

    Not quite the way Palin told the story.

    For Greg: you forgot perhaps the most important reason why the revolution was successful … directly military aid by the French, army and navy both.

  21. #21 Greg laden
    June 6, 2011

    Dh … Actually, that’s a point not forgotten. Merely reserved for another post.

  22. #22 David Wilson
    June 6, 2011

    As we are coming up to the bicentennial of the War of 1812, I would love to get her perspective on that! I wonder if she even heard of that war…

  23. #23 kderosa
    June 6, 2011

    Palin claimed that warning the British was the point, the intention, of the ride. That this was the task Revere was charged with fulfilling.

    No, that’s not what Palin actually stated. She stated:

    “Part of his ride was to warn the British that were already there. That, hey, you’re not going to succeed. You’re not going to take American arms. You are not going to beat our own well-armed persons, individual, private militia that we have,” she added. “He did warn the British.”

    And, indeed, after he was captured during his ride he did inform the British regulars in advance of an impending or possible danger, problem, or other unpleasant situation (i.e., one of the dictionary definitions of “warn”) that was awaiting them. This would have been during “part of his ride.”

    She mentions nothing about “the point” or an “intention” or being “tasked with” anuything. This is merely your somewhat ungenerous interpretation of her less than clear wording. Her poor wording is her fault but you can’t fairly claim that what she said was clearly false.

    When he was stopped by the British, he extemporaneously told them 500 militia were on the way, a little lie as it turns out.

    Since when does an exaggerated statement not also constitute a warning?

    And, of course, if you take Revere’s ride as part of the larger “powder alarm” operation, the main point of that operation was to prepare the colonists to demonstarte or warn the “British” that they were prepared to fight and defend themselves if it came to that.

    And this is exactly the point Palin was attempting to convey. And it’s not at odds with the historical record as you argue.

  24. #24 Jim Winfield
    June 6, 2011

    Kderosa — Don’t defend the woman. You know very well she got the purpose of Revere’s ride wrong. You couldn’t have helped but notice, after watching the video, that she didn’t have a clue but would not admit to it, and made herself look ridiculous by trying to bs her way through it, exactly as she bs’d her way through not being able to name Supreme Court cases nor the name of even one US publication. Were she a Democrat, you’d be howling about her ignorance and you know it. But we have to defend “our side” no matter what, don’t we.

  25. #25 daedalus2u
    June 6, 2011

    The wikipedia talk pages on Paul Revere are pretty funny, how the Palin supporters are trying to rewrite history using her quote in the LA times as an “authoritative source”.

    I looked at the Conservapedia page and they made the change and have Paul Revere ringing bells and warning the soldiers from the United Kingdom about “colony’s rights”. I can’t see the page any more, I made the mistake of searching “teabagger” on conservaapedia and they blocked me. No great loss.

  26. #26 howard.peirce
    June 6, 2011

    serve as impromptu tour guides for the cousins visiting from Ohio

    If you come visit me here in Cincinnati, I’ll take you on a day trip up into Indiana along the route where Mad Anthony Wayne conducted his genocidal campaign against the Shawnee and Miami during the First Indian War under President Washington. It’s a bit short on monuments, what with the whole sweeping-genocide-under-the-rug thing, and the whole letting-dead-native-women-and-children-rot-where-they-fell thing.

  27. #27 howard.peirce
    June 6, 2011

    Adding: But we do have very fertile soil here.

  28. #28 howard.peirce
    June 6, 2011

    Okay, it’s not all bad news in Ye Olde Northwest Territories: The same ancient roadways that led Mad Anthony Wayne from Fort Washington to Fort Ouiatenon also formed a major thoroughfare on the Underground Railroad, leading escaped slaves from the Port of Cincinnati via Levi Coffin’s network to Windsor, Ontario.

    It’s now mostly US 27, with parts of I-69, Indiana 1, etc. The route, of course, is pre-Columbian, and was built by the same late mound-builder culture that was destroyed by influenza and smallpox introduced by the Spanish.

  29. #29 kderosa
    June 6, 2011

    She wasn’t asked about Paul Revere’s ride, she was asked what she had learned that day.

    And she got the point and th epurpose of the colonial operation that day almost exactly right and more than a few a details, even if her language choices weren’t clear At worst she conflated Revere’s ride with the larger operation and might have confused some details (which is impossible to know for certain based on her ambiguous wording).

    Let’s also not forget that her many critics had no idea that Revere had in fact delivered a warning to the British regulars that day and embarrassed themselves when they pounced on Palin as Greg has done in this post. We are now in the back-pedalling phase as said critics attempt to nit-pick they’re way to a face-saving position.

    I don’t mean to defend Palin. I just don’t like the overheated rhetoric.

  30. #30 Woof
    June 6, 2011

    Give it up, Palinbots. She’s a demented fuckwit, and everyone with a thinking brain knows it.

  31. #31 kderosa
    June 6, 2011

    You stay classy now, Woof.

  32. #32 howard.peirce
    June 6, 2011

    You know, kderosa, it takes some fucking nerve to lie to people like you have been, and then bitch about tone when you get called on it. If you weren’t lying about Palin, no one would have any reason to be uncivil toward you. Free speech does not mean a free pass.

    It’s just human nature that if you lie to people, they will get angry. The problem isn’t Woof’s tone, or my tone, or anybody else’s. Palin may be an idiot, but you are knowingly and willfully lying in her defense. Anyone normal human being is going to get angry about that.

    You are a bad person who lies, kderosa, and that’s why no one likes you.

  33. #33 Mark
    June 6, 2011

    It strikes me that what really happened was that she tried to transmute the story into an “Obama wants to take yer guns away (just like the British tried to)!” talking point and ended up with a dog’s breakfast.

  34. #34 Ana
    June 6, 2011

    @kderosa: You’re right that the gotcha question asked of her by the lamestream media was ‘What did you learn today?’ Made me wonder who she got her learnin’ from? Is there a Conservative Paul Revere Tour going on out there these days to reinforce the Conservapedia Paul Revere page – (thanks @daedalus2u for reminding me of that very special place!) – ?

    I was impressed by Palin when she defended herself on FOX the next day and used the phrase “individual private militia” to describe the GUNS GUNS GUNS part of her statement, er, stumble. Now THAT’S a creative rewrite!

  35. #35 Bruce
    June 6, 2011

    Odd that no one has noted that Revere’s claim to fame in this matter derives from “Revere” rhyming with “hear”.
    Dawes and Prescott were as important that night, but their names don’t rhyme well.

  36. #36 kderosa
    June 6, 2011

    howard.pierce, just because you are blinded with Palin-derangement syndrome doesn’t mean that I’ve lied about anything and your failure to specify at least one of my supposed lies is telling.

  37. #37 JASPER COTTON
    June 6, 2011

    OBAMA VOTERS ARE JUST LIKE OPRAH FANS, YOU ALL WANT SOMETHING FOR NOTHING. YOU LIBERALS EXIST AT OTHERS EXPENSE. YOU TRULY ARE “EGG SUCKING DOGS”, AND OBAMA IS A DEGENERATE PAGAN MUSLIM LOVER HOPING AGAINST HOPE TO DESTROY THE HANDS THAT HAVE FED HE AND HIS.

  38. #38 Kathy C.
    June 6, 2011

    I don’t think Sarah Palin “hates” America — she, like so many of these people, think “America” should be what it was in that crystalline idealized 1950’s television world (think “Pleasantville”), when there was that post-war high that made Americans honestly believe they were entitled to having “All Of It.” They seem to feel that there is some way of bringing that world “back” (never realizing, of course, that it never really existed), if they can put Rich White Men in charge, hide away all the nasty blacks and gays and brown-skinned people, and somehow bring about this imaginary “real America” they have created.

    What they don’t want to know about is the real historical America in all its greatness and for all its flaws, they don’t want to acknowledge its massive mistakes and its stumbles (and, yes, its falls). They don’t want to know about the “Great American Melting Pot” except when it comes to Rich White Europeans who came here to become Rich White Americans.

    Seriously, the “house” Sarah Palin has bought here in Arizona is so gigantic I think my own house would fit inside of it around fifteen times. She hasn’t got a clue what ordinary, everyday Americans think unless they’re members of the gun lobby and can give her more freakin’ money. Seriously, that’s all her Paul Revere tirade was about, kissing up to the gun lobby and getting more support. “…warned the British that they weren’t gonna be takin’ away our arms… And we we’re gonna be armed,” indeed.

    It had nothing to do with history, or her lack of knowledge thereof.

  39. #39 Surgoshan
    June 7, 2011

    Listen my children and you shall hear
    of the midnight ride of Paul Rever
    Dawes and Prescot were also there
    But they don’t rhyme so fuck them both
    The limeys wanted to take that day
    All the guns that we had squirreled away
    In violation of our god-given rights
    As put down by Jesus in holy lights
    On the fourth of July in Seventy-Four
    Which is why we had to go to war
    And you have heard this all told wrong
    By commie’bama and his godless throng
    Who say they have historical facts
    But we have something more exact
    Republicans have ineffable truth
    That need only feel right to be given proof
    Revere, Washington, Prescott and Dawes
    Were god-fearing rightist Republicans all
    They liked small government that defended their right
    to own guns and slaves and beat their children at night
    So the next time your teacher tells Democrat lies
    Stand up and shout “Jesus will shoot you in the face with a Smith and Wesson, you gay atheist bastard!”
    Because we can see Russia from here.
    Like Paul Revere.

  40. #40 Ana
    June 7, 2011

    Here’s the content in its entirety from Paul Revere’s Conservapedia page:

    quote/ Paul Revere (1734-1818) was a silversmith in colonial America who was very active in Boston-area revolutionary groups such as the Sons of Liberty. He is famous for riding from Boston to Lexington, Massachusetts with William Dawes on the night of April 18, 1775 ringing bells to warn the British that colonists would exercise their natural rights to both bear arms and use them in an effort secede from the United Kingdom in response to Big Government bullying and interfering with Colony’s Rights[1]. Coincidentally, this also served to warn the minutemen the British were coming[Citation Needed]. Revere was captured before he could reach Concord, but managed to escape. His midnight ride was immortalized by a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.[2]

    References

    ↑ Yahoo! News: Palin “Didn’t Mess Up” Paul Revere History
    ↑ Paul Revere
    /unquote

    LOLOLOL

  41. #41 Pen
    June 7, 2011

    He is famous for riding from Boston to Lexington, Massachusetts with William Dawes on the night of April 18, 1775 ringing bells to warn the British that colonists would exercise their natural rights to both bear arms and use them in an effort secede from the United Kingdom in response to Big Government bullying and interfering with Colony’s Rights[1].

    Oh, I see, so he was a traitor, eh!!

  42. #42 Penske666, Sheffield Engerland
    June 7, 2011

    LOL don’t Americans make most of their history up anyway – see U531.

    Seriously though, if Palin is the voice of America then the rest of the world should be worried. Every statement she makes seems to be misinformed and here in the UK it gets ripped to shreds everytime.

    Is Jasper Cotton Palin in disguise? and how do you get a dog to suck eggs?

  43. #43 MikeN
    June 7, 2011

    I wonder if anyone has a capture of Conservapedia’s “Paul Revere” entry before the Ministry of Truth got hold of it?

  44. #44 Soren
    June 7, 2011

    Google is your friend. This is Googles cached version of the Conservapedia’s Paul Revere entry from june 3rd:

    Paul Revere (1734-1818) was a silversmith in colonial America who was very active in Boston-area revolutionary groups such as the Sons of Liberty. He is famous for riding from Boston to Lexington, Massachusetts with William Dawes on the night of April 18, 1775 to warn the minutemen that British troops led by General Thomas Gage were invading. Revere was captured before he could reach Concord, but managed to escape. His midnight ride was immortalized by a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.[1]

  45. #45 Farin
    June 7, 2011

    I´m shocked by Mrs. Palins lack of knowledge – not that i didn´t already know that she seems to have massive gaps in her general education, but this is embarrassing even by her standards.

    @Woof and others : I understand the utter frustration many must feel given that there are people willing to actually try and rewrite history to make Palin look better, people wjho actually see her as a serious candidate for President and support her no matter what, but please, don´t lower yourself to their level by calling her names and yelling insults. First, those people have way more experience with it, second ad hominem attacks are always a sign that you are not able to back up your points with facts. If you wanna prove her wrong , than cite sources. Not online encyclopedias,but real , primary sources.

  46. #46 Russell
    June 7, 2011

    “I can’t imagine that Sarah Palin hates America.”

    Of course she hates America. That’s why she talks about “real” Americans. Those are the ones, the few, she doesn’t hate. The rest of us, she detests. For many of the same reasons that the Islamists hate America. We don’t buy her stories. We put facts in her way. We don’t pretend that gays getting married is somehow a threat, or anything other than a small bit of freedom. We support reproductive freedom. And we understand that when she uses the word “freedom,” she means the “freedom” of “real” Americans to suppress the rest of us.

  47. #47 Brian
    June 7, 2011

    energy balance, just go to the page’s “History” tab. It’s a real hoot to read. Last edit before the onslaught of edits yesterday was in 2009. Funny thing is, it was actually shaping up to be somewhat respectable until yesterday.

  48. #48 Brook
    June 7, 2011

    Is it really easier to change the history books than to make Sarah Palin supporters understand that she got it wrong?

    I guess maybe.

  49. #49 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    You don’t need to change the history books. According to Robert Allison, history chair at Suffolk University in Boston, Palin got it almost entirely right. (Bonus: There’s an audio version of the NPR interview for the mouth-breathers on this thread.)

    Is there anything more embarrassing than being shown to be dumber than the dummy you are trying to mock?

  50. #50 Inflection
    June 7, 2011

    Sorry Russell, but you’re responding to a spammer selling term papers — check the link in the name…

  51. #51 chris the furriner
    June 7, 2011

    I have a question regarding the Conservapedia article. How do you ring bells to ‘warn the British that colonists would exercise their natural rights to both bear arms and use them in an effort secede from the United Kingdom in response to Big Government bullying and interfering with Colony’s Rights’. Did he have a series of special morse code bells or something?

  52. #52 Lynxreign
    June 7, 2011

    Robert Allison is wrong and a pandering fool. He should be mocked thoroughly by his students and they should transfer out of his classes if that’s the kind of garbage he’s going to “teach”.

    You should note further down in the interview that he states that he talks about Revere and no-one listens to him. I wonder why that is.

  53. #53 K
    June 7, 2011

    And i suppose you people never make any mistakes? Come on. The girl was gettin a sandwich! She sounded exhausted. Give her a break! Is she supposed to be an authority on EVERYTHING? I suppose the pressure of admitting she was wrong in the political history arena might have been immense. So it is excusable, but not right. She does need to admit she had the intel on that a bit off. But really, is that a big deal, or are you people just so eager to smear her that you will take any mistake and turn it into a platform?

  54. #54 gingerwings
    June 7, 2011

    Ok kderosa, you say that Palin’s language was unclear and ambiguous, she conflated Revere’s ride and she confused details…and somehow all that can be interpreted as “Palin was right?”

  55. #55 Greg Laden
    June 7, 2011

    Ana, thanks for the Conservipedia quote.

    Yeah, Robert Allison is a lot like palin. He was obviously very happy to be on NPR for his moment of fame.

    But to give him credit, he’s the first person who has come to Palin’s defense that I know of who has identified himself by name.

  56. #56 dhogaza
    June 7, 2011

    K:

    And i suppose you people never make any mistakes? Come on. The girl was gettin a sandwich! She sounded exhausted.

    We expect our presidents to perform well in situations that are much more pressure-packed and much more exhausting than family vacations in an outsized bus outfitted as an RV …

  57. #57 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    She wasn’t asked about Paul Revere’s ride, she was asked what she had learned that day.

    And she got the point and the purpose of the colonial operation that day almost exactly right and more than a few a details, even if her language choices weren’t clear At worst she conflated Revere’s ride with the larger operation and might have confused some details (which is impossible to know for certain based on her ambiguous wording).

    And so the backtracking begins.

    Oh, and if Palin got it even half-right the first time, then why did ANYONE feel any need to rewrite any web pages after the fact to match her blithering?

    Seriously, folks, even conservatives like Andrew Sullivan have documented Palin’s LONG history of pointless lies and laughable BS. Faux News, the network that employs her as a high-profile commentator, couldn’t even tell her apart from a parody of her! She’s a joke, and the people who try to defend and excuse her are just looking desperate and pathetic.

  58. #58 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    Did he have a series of special morse code bells or something?

    Yes — the cavalry-grade kind that can be rung (without getting the message wrong) while riding at full gallop! Another fine game-changing product of America’s Special Genius. Bet you socialists didn’t understand just how advanced American Capitalism was even back then. America, FUCK YEAH!!!

  59. #59 rob
    June 7, 2011

    lol at the poem Surgoshan.

    @ Greg: i think it should be “palindrone” with an “n” because everything she drones on about sounds the same when head forwards or backwards.

  60. #61 Rory
    June 7, 2011

    The thing is, even if Palin DID get some of the details sorta kinda maybe right (close enough for her supporters to try to fudge them into a correct response) it’s really almost impossible for me to believe that she didn’t do it accidentally.

    And you know, to be fair, maybe the media does beat on her a little, but she pretty much loses the right to complain about it when she takes a ‘family vacation’ funded by her PAC with an army of cameramen along to document it. If she’s sick of being portrayed as a buffoon, maybe she should go back to Alaska and stop making herself an easy target.

  61. #62 Mike B
    June 7, 2011

    From Jan. 7, 2009 Conservapedia entry via http://www.waybackmachine.org

    Note: Waybackmachine is great for this kind of thing.

    quote/
    Paul Revere (1734-1818) was a silversmith in colonial America who was very active in Boston-area revolutionary groups such as the Sons of Liberty. He is famous for riding from Boston to Lexington, Massachusetts with William Dawes on the night of April 18, 1775 to warn the minutemen that British troops led by General Thomas Gage were invading. Revere was captured before he could reach Concord, but managed to escape. His midnight ride was immortalized by a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.[1]

    /qoute

  62. #63 Doug
    June 7, 2011

    Apparently, Robert Allison is to American history what Michael Behe is to evolutionary biology, or Patrick Michaels is to climate change science.

  63. #64 Howard
    June 7, 2011

    Sarah will do the United States of America the greatest favor by running for president. Firstly, Obama will kick her ignorant ass in a public debate, and secondly, even devout Christians who support her, will see what a fucking money grubbing idiotic piece of shit she really is.

    wow .. I feel much better now!

  64. #65 chickgonebad
    June 7, 2011

    JASPER COTTON, regardless of whether anyone believes your statements, what do they have to do with this article?

  65. #66 DaveL
    June 7, 2011

    And she got the point and the purpose of the colonial operation that day almost exactly right and more than a few a details, even if her language choices weren’t clear At worst she conflated Revere’s ride with the larger operation

    No, she got the purpose of Paul Revere’s ride completely wrong and her apologists have been trying to conflate the Midnight Ride with the larger operation ever since in an effort to confuse the issue.

    @ Greg: i think it should be “palindrone” with an “n” because everything she drones on about sounds the same when head forwards or backwards.

    Also for the male honey bee that does not gather food, raise brood, or defend the hive but lives off the work of others.

  66. #67 Calli Arcale
    June 7, 2011

    K:
    I don’t expect her to always answer everything perfectly, but this revealed a fundamental misunderstanding of Revere’s ride. Oddly, not the usual misunderstanding; people think he rode through towns shouting “The British are Coming!” to raise some sort of ad hoc militia, but in fact the militia had already been raised and was waiting for word that it was time to launch their campaign. He was acting as a messenger, not a town crier.

    But Palin didn’t make that usual misunderstanding; hers was even more profound, because she claimed he was warning *the British forces*. Which would be of little value tactically, and would be roughly equivalent to William Wallace and the clans mooning the English troops in “Braveheart”. (Which didn’t end well for a lot of them, since the English had some very good archers.)

    Even then, it’s a stupid, stupid statement that makes her appear utterly ignorant of one of the most widely remembered moments in American history. I might be able to forgive that if she had just apologized and moved on. But no; she had to try and make her statement true somehow. And her followers have been busy trying to bend the Internet to that task — she is now actively responsible for creating an urban legend about Paul Revere, and what’s worse, she clearly doesn’t care. That’s the worst part about all of this. Not only does she not know our history, not only does she not care about correcting her misconceptions, she doesn’t even care that she’s obscuring history, obscuring the truth. It’s not a revision in order to conceal something nasty; it’s a revision for no more value than to not have to admit to being wrong about something. She had that little regard for history and truth.

    Pen:

    Oh, I see, so he was a traitor, eh!!

    That’s exactly what I thought. If Palin’s version is correct (even her “tweaked” version), then Revere’s a traitor for giving away the secret plan. Gosh, it’s amazing it succeeded, then, considering he tried so hard to torpedo it!

  67. #68 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    …and somehow all that can be interpreted as “Palin was right?”

    Yes. You have the choice of interpreting her statements either literally/specifically or generally/figuratively depening on which way yields the most accurate statement by use of your background knowledge.

    So, if I say “Abraham Lincoln … he who um won the civil war by er beating the confederates and uhh freeing the slaves” you can interpret this ambiguous statement many ways. If you interpret it literally you get a silly result since Lincoln didn’t personally fire any shots and he didn’t personally free any slaves. Or you can interpret the statements generally/figuratively by knowing that Lincoln as President was instrumental in accomplishing both of these objectives. This happens to be the right way.

    And, most people know enough about Lincoln to know I was speaking generally/figuratively. And no one would think of objecting to my words as being susceptible to two meanings, one of which was clearly wrong, much less try to force that interpretation upon me.

    What happened with Palin was that most critics did not know the somewhat obscure history that occurred at the tail end of Revere’s ride or the real history of the events leading up to Lexington and Concord. They assumed she was speaking literally and pounced at the opportunity to criticize. Now they look foolish.

    The problem is that now that they have been apprised of the facts they continue to justify their increasingly silly initial positions by moving the goal posts.

    Here’s another historical tidbit from the British general in charge of the operation:

    From: General Thomas Gage Reports on the Battles of Lexington and Concord in a Letter to the Earl of Dartmouth April 22, 1775

    “It appears from the Firing of Alarm Guns and Ringing of Bells that the March of Lieutenant Colonel Smith was discovered, and he was opposed by a Body of Men within Six Miles of Concord;”

  68. #69 Drivebyposter
    June 7, 2011

    OBAMA VOTERS ARE JUST LIKE OPRAH FANS, YOU ALL WANT SOMETHING FOR NOTHING. YOU LIBERALS EXIST AT OTHERS EXPENSE. YOU TRULY ARE “EGG SUCKING DOGS”, AND OBAMA IS A DEGENERATE PAGAN MUSLIM LOVER HOPING AGAINST HOPE TO DESTROY THE HANDS THAT HAVE FED HE AND HIS.

    GO BACK TO WHERE YOU CAME FROM. YOU ARE OBVIOUSLY A DIRTY FUCKING SOCIALIST MUSLIM. GO. TO. HELL. YOU ARE NOT AN AMERICAN!

    Well that was fun. Mocking crazy people should draw a salary.

  69. #70 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    kderosa: I asked earlier why anyone was now trying to rewrite web-pages, if what Palin said was even half true. You have still failed to answer my question. You can’t even acknowledge the question without admitting how cowardly and dishonest you Palinistas are. Also, as I said before, you’ve backed down from saying Palin was right on the facts, to blaming us for not giving her enough slack. The only one who looks foolish here is you. Your credibility is gone.

  70. #71 Prince
    June 7, 2011

    This is the woman who believes she is the only right person in politics. Not Romney, not Trump, Not anyone for that matter. But I’ll bet if you tell here that cherrios are donut seeds, she will ask you how deep to plant them. She would never get a vote from here. Obama Bin ladin would never get a vote from here. Neither would duh huh Joe Biden.

  71. #72 itzac
    June 7, 2011

    I’m kinda with kderosa on this one. I don’t think it’s fair to say Palin got her history wrong, if mainly because she barely said anything at all, and what she did say was clearly not meant as a historical lecture, and could be interpreted to mesh vaguely with historical fact.

    What she said, as Mark and one other commenter, who’s comment I now can’t find in this long thread, have pointed out, was crusty with her ideology and meant to rouse rabble more than provide any information.

    This discussion on the wikipedia article is hilarious. This distinction between a reliable source, such as the LA Times, and a reliable source for historical information, not the LA Times in this case, has obviously been lost. It’s perfectly relevant to cite the LA Times in the Sarah Palin article, but it’s perfectly daft to cite a Palin quote in the times in the historical article about Paul Revere.

  72. #73 Uncle Glenny
    June 7, 2011

    You have the choice of interpreting her statements either literally/specifically or generally/figuratively…

    Yes, a presidential figure should always have that latter option. Unlike the Bible.

  73. #74 Nemo
    June 7, 2011

    Is she supposed to be an authority on EVERYTHING?

    How about anything? Let’s start with that.

  74. #75 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    I don’t think it’s fair to say Palin got her history wrong, if mainly because she barely said anything at all, and what she did say was clearly not meant as a historical lecture, and could be interpreted to mesh vaguely with historical fact.

    So…she’s an idiot blathering to other lazy idiots about something she and her intended audience didn’t really care about; therefore we have to judge her by the standard of lazy idiots who don’t really care what they’re talking about? Thanks for clearing that up. Now all we have to do is wait for kderosa to confirm that that is indeed what he meant to say…

  75. #76 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    I asked earlier why anyone was now trying to rewrite web-pages, if what Palin said was even half true.

    Why does that matter? Let’s assume they were wrong to do this and what they’ve added is not historically accurate. How does this affect the historical accuracy of Palin’s words?

    What some loony Palin supportes may have done after the fact is irrelevant. The real historical record reamains the same. Wickipedia is not primary source in any event.

    you’ve backed down from saying Palin was right on the facts

    No I haven’t. I stated that her words were ambiguous and inarticulate, but if you know the underlying facts about the events in question, there is a reasonable interpretation of her words that yields a mostly historically accurate description.

    1. Revere did warn the British soldiers who had captured him. (warn in the sense that a rattlesnake warns its vitims it is about to bite by shaking its rattle). And while Revere didn’t pre-intend to personally warn the British that night, he did wind up warning them both personally and through his actions which set the Powder Alarm operation into motion. (Much like COlumbus didn’t pre-intend to discover America, yet he accidentally managed to do so, so we can commonly attribute the discover to him without the lefty blogosphere getting itself into an uproar.)

    2. Bells were rung and shots were fired as a result of Revere’s actions that night. This ringing and shots also served to warn the British that their mission had been discovered by the colonists and they would be ready for them.

    3. The British soldiers were going to seize the colonists munitions and gunpowder and the colonists response that night indicated that they were going to resist any such seizure.

    Which part of this is clearly wrong?

  76. #77 nice_marmot
    June 7, 2011

    A fantastic post, Greg. This whole episode is emblematic of the utter contempt that many on the right have for any criticism or opposition and how readily they denounce their critics and opponents as unpatriotic or “un-American” despite the manifest ignorance of people like Palin and Bachmann.
    I don’t know which is more absurdly surreal: That Palin doubled-down on her fact-free Paul Revere “Palindrone,” or that there are actually people who take her seriously enough to leap to her defense and/or concoct a replacement history de novo, adjusting the facts to fit Palin’s incoherent blather.
    Between Palin, Bachmann, Gingrich, and Santorum, by the end of this campaign the American Revolution will have been won single-handedly by an assault-rifle wielding Ronald Reagan, who, unafraid to use enhanced interrogation, defeated hordes of Muslim Brotherhood communists on the battlefields of Concord, Iowa…

  77. #78 Greg Laden
    June 7, 2011

    Revere did warn the British soldiers who had captured him. (warn in the sense that a rattlesnake warns its vitims it is about to bite by shaking its rattle).

    And here you are explicitly telling us that this is what Palin meant. But you are wrong. The video is above. Go look at it and come back here and tell me that you honestly believe that.

    You can’t because she didn’t and this is obvious. You are lying. You have no more concern with the truth than Palin has, or that any of her supporters who are busy altering wikipedia have. In fact, as far as I can telly, you are one of her supporters and you are involved in altering wikipedia. You certainly do have your talking points well worked out for commenting here. Where else are you commenting?

    Folks, I think we see the emergence of a new but not unexpected phenomenon on the Internet: Sara Palin Idiocy Denialism.

  78. #79 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    So…she’s an idiot blathering to other lazy idiots about something she and her intended audience didn’t really care about; therefore we have to judge her by the standard of lazy idiots who don’t really care what they’re talking about?

    Unlike Palin’s gibberish, there’s no way to parse this statement so that it is coherent and makes sense.

    Glass houses, stones, and all that.

  79. #80 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    What some loony Palin supportes may have done after the fact is irrelevant.

    It’s more relevant than your lame-assed waffling and doubletalk, in that it shows how eager Palin’s supporters are to lie about their own country’s history, rather than admit their darling mama grizzly didn’t know what she was talking about. (Oh, and is Palin criticizing her follwers’ actions?)

    Wickipedia is not primary source in any event.

    An obvious (and lame) excuse for doing something you know is wrong and dishonest.

    No I haven’t. I stated that her words were ambiguous and inarticulate, but if you know the underlying facts about the events in question, there is a reasonable interpretation of her words that yields a mostly historically accurate description.

    First, you didn’t admit her words were “ambiguous and inarticulate” until after we showed you they were FACTUALLY WRONG. Second, numerous comments here have already demonstrated how far from the facts of the event your “interpretation” really is. And third, if her words were “a mostly historically accurate description” to begin with, then why are her supporters trying to change any web page to support them?

    Besides, if Palin’s words were “ambiguous and inarticulate,” how do you know which “interpretation” of those words reflects what she really meant to say? You’re pretty much admitting here that her words were so incoherent and insubstantial that only our choice of “interpretation” can possibly make them valid. Your defense of Palin is ridiculous and dishonest, and blaming us for not “interpreting” them right is just one more sign of the radical right’s infantile lack of responsibility. Once again, Palin’s abysmal failures are everyone’s fault but Palin’s.

  80. #81 itzac
    June 7, 2011

    The signal of historical fact in her statement is mostly lost in the noise of second amendment bluster. What is discernible is vague enough to be interpreted as correct, which is pretty much what Allison says in the NPR interview. Even he admits this was more a second amendment argument than anything else. I guess kderosa missed that part of the interview.

    kderosa, Raging Bee’s statement is perfectly clear, though s/he did misunderstand what I was trying to say. Mostly because I didn’t say it well.

    I guess in all this, what I’m trying to say is,

    Why is this news?

    she’s an idiot blathering to other lazy idiots about something she and her intended audience didn’t really care about;

    What about this is new?

  81. #82 Lynxreign
    June 7, 2011

    kderosa @78

    Unlike Palin’s gibberish

    Thanks for admitting it is gibberish, why were you trying to claim it isn’t?

    there’s no way to parse this statement so that it is coherent and makes sense

    It is a fairly straightforward statement, unless you’re an idiot. Just because you’re too dim to get it doesn’t mean it isn’t clear.

    @76

    1) He didn’t “warn” the British, he tried to fool them with a threat. If a lion is behind you and approaching and I tell you, I have warned you. If there’s no lion and I’m just looking to distract you for any other purpose I haven’t warned you. Paul Revere did the latter.

    2) That’s not even close to what Palin said.

    3) ibid

    4) You’re as much of a fool as she is.

  82. #83 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    And here you are explicitly telling us that this is what Palin meant. But you are wrong. The video is above. Go look at it and come back here and tell me that you honestly believe that.

    No one knows what she really “meant.” Not me. Not you.

    All I know is what she actually said. And a fair interpretation of what she said comports with the historical record. Therefore, she, like any other extemporaneous speaker, is entitled to the benefit of the doubt, i.e., that she meant what she said.

    Not for anything, but the woman had just come from a tour of the Old North Church where the guide had in all liklihood just recounted the full story of the ride to her. And we’re surprised that she could recite some piece of esoterica and tie it into her campaign theme? That doesn’t take a genius to do.

    In fact, as far as I can tell, you are one of her supporters and you are involved in altering wikipedia. You certainly do have your talking points well worked out for commenting here.

    I don’t need to alter wikipedia adn I’m certainly not a supporter. The historical record is what it is and already provides ample support.

    That, some reasonable English comprehension skills, some facility with Google, and not being inflicted with Palin Derangement Syndrome is all anyone needs to devleop an informed opinion on the matter.

    In this case Palin comes out on top. Why is it so hard to admit it?

    Speakers make gaffes all the time. No doubt she’ll make her fair share during the campaign, just like our current president, and the one before him, have made their share during their campaign and while in office.

  83. #84 ggmac
    June 7, 2011

    Reading the comments of the Palin supporters is similar to people trying to prove that Nostradamus knew what the future would hold. Only by looking back and applying it to events could it be seen as prophetic, unfortunately the prophecies haven’t prepared us for anything (because the words don’t have any meaning other than what you want them to, and after the fact).

  84. #85 Greg Laden
    June 7, 2011

    And a fair interpretation of what she said comports with the historical record.

    No, it does not.

    And, I and others have told you that already several times and in several different ways.

    There are two interpretations of what Palin said that comports with the historical record. One is delusional. That might be you. The other is dishonest and, at this point in the game, rather embarrassingly desperate. That is almost certainly you.

    Are you the same kderosa who ran an education blog a while back?

  85. #86 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    All I know is what she actually said. And a fair interpretation of what she said comports with the historical record.

    You already admitted her words were “ambiguous and inarticulate.” And you’ve also admitted that only by choosing the right interpretation can we pretend her words “comport with the historical record.” Therefore, her words were, AT BEST, so empty and insubstantial that anyone could pretend they meant anything, and you’re covering for her by insisting that it’s our job to interpret her correctly, not her job to talk sensibly.

  86. #87 Lynxreign
    June 7, 2011

    Speakers make gaffes all the time. No doubt she’ll make her fair share during the campaign

    Ha! You think she’s campaigning. Isn’t that cute.

    In this case Palin comes out on top. Why is it so hard to admit it?

    Because that’s a lie. You have to do enough contortions to make it seem close to possible that she might have come near to a fact that you’d be an instant hire for Cirque du Solei.

  87. #88 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    Not for anything, but the woman had just come from a tour of the Old North Church where the guide had in all liklihood just recounted the full story of the ride to her. And we’re surprised that she could recite some piece of esoterica and tie it into her campaign theme?

    Yeah, that’s Palin all right: try to give her historical facts, and her brain purees it into “esoterica,” and tries to use it as a campaign theme. That doesn’t surprise us at all.

  88. #89 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    Even he admits this was more a second amendment argument than anything else. I guess kderosa missed that part of the interview.

    Actually, at the time it was more an English Bill of rights issue (1689), but let’s not let those pesky facts get in the way of a good rant. Moreover, the right existed in English common law and in some state/colony Constitutions.

    There is, of course, a reason why the right to bear arms comes right after the right of free speech.

    Just because you’re too dim to get it doesn’t mean it isn’t clear.

    I didn’y say it wasn’t clear. It’s a non sequitur. A very clear non sequitur. And a logical fallacy.

    He didn’t “warn” the British, he tried to fool them with a threat.

    A threat is also a warning. And remains a threat even if exaggerated and/or untrue.

  89. #90 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    The historical record is what it is and already provides ample support.

    The fact that even some of her supporters are trying to alter a well-known information site to force it to agree with her words, strongly implies that such support is far from “ample.” The Palinistas’ actions (and Palin’s refusal to criticize them) speak louder than your words.

  90. #91 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    I see the substantive argument phase of this thread is long since over. Now we’re firmly in the name-calling phase.

    There’s an old litigator’s saying. When the law is on your side, pound the law. When the facts are on your side, pound the facts. And when neither are on your side, pound the table.

    Have fun pounding the table.

    Yes, Greg, that is my blog.

  91. #92 Lynxreign
    June 7, 2011

    A threat is also a warning. And remains a threat even if exaggerated and/or untrue.

    But it doesn’t remain a warning. Why are you going to such lengths to try and defend her, as you said, gibberish?

  92. #93 Calli Arcale
    June 7, 2011

    kderosa:

    Yes. You have the choice of interpreting her statements either literally/specifically or generally/figuratively depening on which way yields the most accurate statement by use of your background knowledge.

    Yes, you can interpret it either way, but some of these interpretations (including her own after-the-fact one) are so generous as to be practically retconning. Her statement is completely false, both figuratively and literally. Not only did Revere not set out to warn the British, when he did get captured, what he did say could not reasonably be construed as a “hey, suck it, Redcoats, we’re coming for you and we’re not gonna be put down!”

    What happened with Palin was that most critics did not know the somewhat obscure history that occurred at the tail end of Revere’s ride or the real history of the events leading up to Lexington and Concord. They assumed she was speaking literally and pounced at the opportunity to criticize.

    C’mon; now you’re arguing that what she REALLY meant was that Revere’s ride led to alarm bells eventually being rung? That’s rich, considering that in your latest post you say this:

    No one knows what she really “meant.” Not me. Not you.

    You seem awfully sure of what she meant — sure enough to take great pains to stretch her words and fill them in with unspoken content to make them fit some tiny part of the history. You say it’s not surprising she could finish a tour of the Old North Church and come out with a bit of esoterica that ties to her campaign (what campaign, BTW? according to her, she’s just on a “family vacation”). Well, yeah, except that would mean she’s an insanely stupid speaker, because if she was INTENTIONALLY referring to events after his ride and simultaneously to his capture by the British and expecting listeners to get that, then she expects AVERAGE AMERICANS to not think she’s talking about the actual ride itself.

    I’m not much of a liberal. I was fully supporting McCain up until this nobody from Alaska got added to the ticket. Obama — well, it’s cool having a black man as president, but he’s too young, and too new to the political scene. (Also a problem that Palin has, and which she has done nothing to alleviate, having served in no political office since she resigned her gubernatorial post in 2008.) Dreams and hope are good, but you can’t eat dreams and hope. McCain I thought had a chance of restoring some sanity to the Republican party. The party of freakin’ Lincoln! *shakes head* It wasn’t to be. And for yet another year, I found myself casting my vote not *for* someone but *against* someone.

    Palin, Bachmann, et al are embarrassments to the Republican Party. If they are allowed to continue as its cheerleaders, I predict a victory for Obama in 2012. Given the state of the economy, and the fact that he still has not closed Guantanamo or pulled out of anywhere (two of his biggest 2008 campaign promises), and the continuing anti-black sentiment, Obama should, under normal circumstances, be likely to lose in 2012. Incumbent Presidents do not often do well under these circumstances. But the Republican opposition has been pretty lackluster and disorganized so far. We’ll see if we get anything better by November of 2012.

  93. #94 Lynxreign
    June 7, 2011

    kderosa @ 91

    Couldn’t resist being wrong one more time before you flounced, eh? Just because you refuse to admit you’re wrong doesn’t mean you’re right. Enjoy your classic conservative’s projection. Lie and claim the roles are reversed. Describe the other the way you know you’re behaving. In your post @91 you do so quite predictably.

  94. #95 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    Ok last one, I promise. We’re rocking a dead baby now.

    C’mon; now you’re arguing that what she REALLY meant was that Revere’s ride led to alarm bells eventually being rung?

    Yeah. 18th century alarm bells.

    From Fischer’s book:

    After a while when Revere was in captivity and after he had “warned them the Brits realized Revere had been telling the truth and that the alarm had been raised in the countryside. Fischer: “At last the officers began to feel the full import of what Paul Revere had been telling them. His words of warning took on stronger meaning when punctuated by gunfire. The sound of a single shot had suggested to them that surprise was lost. The crash of a volley appeared evidence that the country was rising against them. As they came closer to the Common they began to hear Lexington’s town bell clanging rapidly. The captive [Jonathan] Loring, picking up Revere’s spirit, turned to the officers and said, ‘The bell’s a’ringing! The town’s alarmed, and you’re all dead men!’”

    Let me reinterate Fischer’s words: WORDS OF WARNING.

  95. #96 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    Sure, kderosa, and if I say “John McCain flew into enemy territory for the purpose of giving them false information,” you’d be okay with that too, right? I mean, that’s exactly what McCain did after the Vietnamese shot him down, captured him, and started torturing him — so what I just said could reasonably be interpreted to comport with the historical facts, right?

  96. #97 charlie
    June 7, 2011

    sad state of affairs, can thank her for one thing, people talking about history. Since I saw the word, shudder, french, might ask your take on C. Hibbert’s(Redcoats and Rebels)claim that Revere was the son of fr.Huguenot who changed his name from Apollos Rivoire because, “the bumpkins pronounce it easier.”

  97. #98 Udo
    June 7, 2011

    Kderosa, that the colonists rang bells and fired warning shots as the enemy approached Concord is not in dispute, that this was done to warn the British is absurd. As the defenders had already been assembled these actions were principally meant to alert the general populace to find out what was afoot and stay clear. On the return to Boston the British forces looted and burned homes so warnings to the people were warranted.

    The harder you try the more foolish you look.

  98. #99 rob
    June 7, 2011

    palin orating is like thousands of monkeys randomly hitting keys on a keyboard.

    every once in a while, something recognizable comes out. but the vast majority of the time it is utter gibberish.

  99. #100 Mich
    June 7, 2011

    @Jim Winfield,

    No, that’s not what Palin actually stated. She stated:

    “Part of his ride was to warn the British that were already there. That, hey, you’re not going to succeed. You’re not going to take American arms. You are not going to beat our own well-armed persons, individual, private militia that we have,” she added. “He did warn the British.”

    The problem is, Jim, that’s not the original statement Palin made. That is what she said later, after she was rightly ridiculed. That is what she said later in an effort to pretend that she hadn’t butchered the facts.

  100. #101 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    and if I say “John McCain flew into enemy territory for the purpose of giving them false information,” you’d be okay with that too, right? I mean, that’s exactly what McCain did after the Vietnamese shot him down, captured him, and started torturing him

    Your statement contradicts the historical record so there is a difference.

    In contrast, had you said “John McCain flew into enemy giving the enemy false information” is ambiguous but comports with the historic record. It would be unfair of me to insist that (much less ridicule you for) you meant that McCain’s purpose in flying to Vietnam was to give false information.

    Hopefully, you see the difference.

    that this was done to warn the British is absurd

    So why do you think they call them (and why did you call them) warning shots? Who’s being warned? The Brits certainly took them as a warning as per Gage’s letter above.

    As the defenders had already been assembled these actions were principally meant to alert the general populace to find out what was afoot and stay clear.

    Google powder alarms and you’ll see that this statement isn’t accurate. The shots and bell ringing and beacon lighting were intended to muster the militia.

  101. #102 feralboy12
    June 7, 2011

    What troubles me as much as her lack of knowledge is the fact that she babbles a big mixed bag of fact, fiction, talking points, and sheer nonsense–and the way her supporters jump on various nuggets of possible accuracy, twist the wrong stuff around, and interpret the nonsense in ways that sort of make sense. This happens a lot with her, and is not a trait I like to see in political figures and elected officials. When an elected official relies on vague statements and semi-coherent babble to communicate, those to whom he or she has delegated authority to are able to interpret things their own way and cherry-pick to find backing for their own desires. That is no way to run a government.
    Eventually you are faced with a “who will rid me of this troublesome bishop” moment.

  102. #103 Raging Bee
    June 7, 2011

    Your statement contradicts the historical record so there is a difference.

    No it does not. McCain did indeed give the enemy false information. That was my point: I was doing what you are doing, cherrypicking facts to try to make a totally nonsensical and false statement sound slightly credible.

    So why do you think they call them (and why did you call them) warning shots? Who’s being warned? The Brits certainly took them as a warning as per Gage’s letter above.

    Now you’re deliberatly confusing Paul Revere’s actions with those of other people, and the whole thing is now starting to look like another Gish Gallop. And since your whole argument now depends on this deliberate confusion, your argument fails. You’re an idiot desperately flailing about for anything that can make the Blessed Palin look smarter than a fifth-grader.

  103. #104 DaveL
    June 7, 2011

    So why do you think they call them (and why did you call them) warning shots? Who’s being warned?

    One. Paragraph. Later:

    Google powder alarms and you’ll see that this statement isn’t accurate. The shots and bell ringing and beacon lighting were intended to muster the militia.

    I see you’re going for the Full Orwell.

  104. #105 len
    June 7, 2011

    It’s quite PATHETHIC how OBSESSED you liberal progressives are with Sarah Palin. I’m new to this blog, but I doubt you’d dare take on Obama and his crony capitalism, but you go after easy(trivial) targets like Palin who currently hold no elected office. Liberalism is definitely a mental disorder.

    Thanks for the laughs.

  105. #106 MacTurk
    June 7, 2011

    From the rash of Palin-bottery which spread across this blog, it seems there are still American voters who think that La Palin deserves serious consideration. This is sad.

    What in the name of Dog is she smoking? Or is she doing prescription drugs?

    Her retention skills are in need of work also.

  106. #107 len
    June 7, 2011

    spelling correction:

    *PATHETIC*

  107. #108 Jordan
    June 7, 2011

    I quite liked this post, although I was linked by a misleading url which described the author as “Laden”. I did not assume it was Greg Laden. Greg Laden sounds like a character from Family Guy.

  108. #109 feralboy12
    June 7, 2011

    len @104:

    If you think real hard and rack your memory, you may recall that less than three years ago this woman was the vice-presidential candidate of a major political party, was governor of an American state, and is still touted by pundits and a not insubstantial portion of the voting public as a viable presidential candidate. This is not something that can be ignored. So excuse us if we’re “obsessed” with not wanting our country run by idiots.
    Also, you’ve not only shown conclusively but basically stated that you don’t let your own ignorance, even when you’re clearly aware of it, stop you from having an opinion. Since you are “new to this blog,” you should probably read some of it before you make statements about its content.
    So don’t thank us for your laughter; that bubbled up somewhere from the deep recesses of your putrid brain, through the cracks in your thinking.

  109. #110 Railboy
    June 7, 2011

    If someone else had spoken Palin’s words – someone with a better track record – I could be persuaded to interpret them charitably, as kderosa is bending over backwards to do.

    But Palin now has a long history of making inaccurate and incomprehensible statements. At some point you have to accept that this pattern reflects a deeper lack of understanding & knowledge.

    There are people who interpret everything their pet does as a deliberate, rational choice borne of human-level intelligence. No matter how many times their dog eats the drapes they remain convinced that he’s as smart as any human being. It’s lunacy. But it’s a great example of how easy it is to come up with ad-hoc justifications for stupid behavior.

    How many times does Palin have to say something that makes no sense before her fans will accept that they’re projecting, not perceiving, intelligence?

  110. #111 Bruce Wright
    June 7, 2011

    I love how Paul Revere walked on the moon.

    (He didn’t really, but don’t tell kderosa.)

    Because, as any schoolboy knows, because of Revere’s ride, some other people shot warning shots and rang bells later, at a different place and time. Which TOTALLY counts as part of Revere’s ride. (You know, his ride *THROUGH TOWN*, Shooting and Ringing, to warn the British that we were going to be secure and we were going to be free.)

    Anywhooo…. Because of that, the US of A was founded. And then just a little while later, the US of A LANDS on the MOOOOOON, Baby!

    So, thanks to good old Paul Revere for that moonwalk! I’m sure he was shooting and ringing all through the moon!

  111. #112 Little foot
    June 7, 2011

    No matter how many times Sarah Palin eats the drapes ….

    Excellent

  112. #113 kderos
    June 7, 2011

    More than a few commenters here don’t seem to understand that circular arguments are logical fallacies. To wit: Palin is dumb because she says dumb things. Palin said something that may be interpreted as a correct comment or as a dumb comment. The comment must be dumb because Palin is dumb. See the problem? Probably not.

    I don’t particularly like Palin’s policies, but boy can she bring out the crazy in her detractors. And the irony is precious. That’s blogosphere gold as far as I’m concerned.

  113. #114 dean
    June 7, 2011

    “I don’t particularly like Palin’s policies, but boy can she bring out the crazy in her detractors.”

    She has detractors because she is fundamentally dishonest and not the least bit intelligent, both well demonstrated by her foolishness about Paul Revere, yet for some reason she has apologists aplenty ready to twist reality to make her appear normal, as you demonstrate.

  114. #115 G. cuvier
    June 7, 2011

    kderosa

    And she got the point and th epurpose of the colonial operation that day almost exactly right and more than a few a details, even if her language choices weren’t clear At worst she conflated Revere’s ride with the larger operation and might have confused some details

    Excuse me, son? What “colonial operation” are you referring to?

  115. #116 Kate
    June 7, 2011

    Kderos, the only irony here is that your twisting of the truth is as much a sidestep from reality as her bungling of the truth

  116. #117 M.meyers
    June 7, 2011

    I think for her next trick palin should visit Fukushima

    I would love to hear her version of a nuclear meltdown

  117. #118 Ed Barbar
    June 7, 2011

    “Sarah Palin can see Russia from her Living room. ”

    Well, so much for any veracity YOU might have. The actual quotation is from Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live, widely repeated by leftists such as you, in which Tina acting as SP said “I can see Russia from my backyard.” What Sarah was actually saying is that Russia is close and that “You can see Russia from some Alaska Islands,” highlighting the fact that Alaska is proximate to another powerful nation.

    If you repeat lies like this, why should I believe you will write anything accurately? You hate SP. Just say “I hate SP, and I feel good about my hatred because of this latest supposed gaffe she said.”

  118. #119 Greg Laden
    June 7, 2011

    I hate SP, and I feel good about my hatred because of this latest moronic gaffe she said.

  119. #120 Greg Laden
    June 7, 2011

    Palin said something that may be interpreted as a correct comment or as a dumb comment.

    No one other than you is saying that. Everyone is saying, rather, that Palin said something that could only be interpreted as a correct comment by an apologist or an idiot, and is in fact a dumb comment.

  120. #121 Mike Haubrich
    June 7, 2011

    I would like to hear from a Palin supporter, such as Ed Barbour that he actually realizes that Obama’s “57 states” was a slip and not a reflection that he doesn’t know how many states there are. There is a difference between his error and Palin’s ignorant mangling of history.

    Sarah Palin is all about “truthiness.” If it works in her gut, then it should override everyone else’s brainy knowledge.

  121. #122 kderosa
    June 7, 2011

    @Greg Laden – No one other than you is saying that.

    Except at least two history professors from Boston. Not to mention the numerous journalists that concede that Palin was “technically correct” before launching into their talking points.

    Only the true believers and those unfanmiliar with Google haven’t hedged their bets at this point.

  122. #123 Ana
    June 7, 2011

    FFS she has the man riding through town ringing bells and firing shots to warn the British. I think it’s time for some of us to revisit the video…

  123. #124 dhogaza
    June 7, 2011

    but you go after easy(trivial) targets like Palin

    Well, we know that Palin’s a trivial target, which is why her being named the VP candidate of the Republican party was such a hoot for us Dems.

    Hopefully this trivial target will become the Presidential candidate this time.

    kderosa:

    Only the true believers and those unfanmiliar with Google haven’t hedged their bets at this point.

    Pot, kettle, black dude … your mindless defense of her makes you a true believer and your inability to spell “unfamiliar” just makes you silly.

  124. #125 Greg laden
    June 8, 2011

    Maybe unfanmiliar means something

  125. #126 Tacroy
    June 8, 2011

    The other day I drove to the grocery store and bought some milk and cookies and oranges. On my way back home I went a little bit too fast and was pulled over by a cop and got a speeding ticket.

    Later, my friend asked me “What did you do today?”, I said “I went out to get a speeding ticket”.

    Makes sense.

  126. #127 kderosa
    June 8, 2011

    Makes sense.

    Not really, but this does:

    “I went out and got a speeding ticket.”

    or, more realistically,you would have skipped the mundane parts and jumped right to the important bit.

    “I got a speeding ticket.”

    You know, kinda like Palin did, though with fractured yet perfectly understandable syntax — unless, of course, you have Palin Derangement Syndrome spittle on your lips. In which case you would insist that everyone knows you really only went out to get groceries and couldn’t have possibly have gotten a ticket since you didn’t intend to do so before your trip.

  127. #128 Wow
    June 8, 2011

    “like Palin did, though with fractured yet perfectly understandable syntax”

    You say that, but the fact you have to twist so hard to make it understandable shows it cannot be “perfectly understandable”.

    Palin is self-centered and anyone against her is automatically wrong. Ergo, everything she says is right, it’s just being “gotcha’d”.

    And you, worshipping the very ground she breathes on, follow the same path.

    It’s called “hero worship”. Very little good ever comes of it.

  128. #129 Wow
    June 8, 2011

    “No matter how many times their dog eats the drapes they remain convinced that he’s as smart as any human being.”

    Although you’ll note a changeover when you accuse their dog of DELIBERATELY shitting in your flowerbed: “He’s just doing what dogs do!” (I.e. they’re as dumb as any other mutt).

    You’ll note palin supporters doing that when she takes some of the donation money and uses it to, say, fluff up her book sales: Well, all politicians do that!

  129. #130 kderosa
    June 8, 2011

    You say that, but the fact you have to twist so hard to make it understandable

    I don’t have to twist anything.

    All I’m doing is carefully explaining it as I would to a child — a child in the middle of a tantrum, and suffering from a reading comprehension problem.

    If I were writing for normal, sane readers, with some sense of shame, I could have just pointed to the pertinent parts of the various extant historical documents (primary and secondary in this case) and left it at that.

    Would it help if I used smaller words? How about a nice drawing? I’ll use crayons to put you at ease.

  130. #131 Raging Bee
    June 8, 2011

    More than a few commenters here don’t seem to understand that circular arguments are logical fallacies. To wit: Palin is dumb because she says dumb things. Palin said something that may be interpreted as a correct comment or as a dumb comment. The comment must be dumb because Palin is dumb. See the problem? Probably not.

    Yeah, I see the problem: you don’t know what a “circular argument” is.

    We consider Palin to be stupid and dishonest (not merely dumb) because we’ve observed her consistently acting stupid and dishonest for many years. Therefore, when she says something that sounds stupid, we go with stupid because it fits the already established pattern; and we reject other interpretations because they’re clearly nothing more than lame rationalizations by desperate apoologists. That’s not a circular argument.

    Notice how the Palin apologist always turns up the condescension every time his arguments are debunked and he makes a fool of himself? That, and the old “look how angry she’s made you” dodge, are a de-facto admission that he’s lost the argument.

    Oh, and then there’s this gem of win:

    I don’t particularly like Palin’s policies…

    Then why are you so desperately defending her? Probably because her petty tribalism is more important to you than anything else.

  131. #132 Raging Bee
    June 8, 2011

    Oh, and if you want to complain about “derangement,” just remember that we’re not the ones trying to alter Wikipedia to make ourselves feel intelligent. The only truly deranged people here — as in, desperately hiding from reality — are the Palinistas.

  132. #133 Lynxreign
    June 8, 2011

    kderosa,

    You’ve already admitted that what Palin said was gibberish, why are you still trying to spin it otherwise? She’s an imbecile, you’re a sycophant, just admit that you’re only continuing your own gibberish here either because you’re a troll or because you’re hoping she’ll wink at you.

  133. #134 kderosa
    June 8, 2011

    We consider Palin to be stupid and dishonest (not merely dumb) because we’ve observed her consistently acting stupid and dishonest for many years. … This is another example of her acting stupid and dishonest; therefore, this proves she is stupid and dishonest.

    Apparently, you don’t see the problem nor do you appear to understand what a circular argument is.

    As for Palin’s consistent stupd and dishonest extemporaneous spoken comments, any list you could produce 1. would be no longer than the list conservatives could produce for Obama’s “gaffes,” 2. would be full of dubious gaffes as the current gaffe demonstrates, and 3. characterizing the gaffes as dishonest merely undermines your integrity (as in does for conservatives making the same arguments). More importantly, none of these gaffes by any politician relates to policy.

    The only reason why this current “gaffe” is interesting is the initial unhinged response by liberals and then the unhinged response by conservatives trying to modify wikipedia.

  134. #135 Greg Laden
    June 8, 2011

    1. would be no longer than the list conservatives could produce for Obama’s “gaffes,”

    That is called manufactured equivalence.

    would be full of dubious gaffes as the current gaffe demonstrates

    We’ve already established that the current gaff is not dubious.

    haracterizing the gaffes as dishonest merely undermines your integrity

    Nobody is saying that being stupid is dishonest. People are saying that her later claims and your covering up and revision are dishonest.

  135. #136 kderosa
    June 8, 2011

    You’ve already admitted that what Palin said was gibberish, why are you still trying to spin it otherwise?

    To counteract the OP’s spin.

    If you are going to engage in a parsing exercise of spoken words, do it fairly. Reasonable people and history experts differ as to whether Palin’s words were ahistorical or not.

    This “gaffe” is very similar to the “party like it’s 1773″ “gaffe”: a gaffe that’s not really a gaffe but which ironically served to catch the initial unhinged responders in gaffes.

  136. #137 kderosa
    June 8, 2011

    That is called manufactured equivalence.

    They appear to be using the same dubious standards that you are, so the manufactured equivalence is as valid as the original manufactured goods. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.

    We’ve already established that the current gaff is not dubious.

    Your argument rests on your self-serving characterization of what Revere said to his captors as not being a warning. Yet, Fischer characterizes the same words as being a warning. So on one side we have an avowed Palin hater trying to score points and on the other we have a neutral historian writing before the controversy. I’m going with the neutral author.

    Can you say manufactured controversy?

    People are saying that her later claims and your covering up and revision are dishonest.

    Actually, that is what the original commenter claimed.

    And, of course, claiming that her subsequent remarks are dishonest is based entirely on the assumption that her original remarks had to be inaccurate because she is dumb. And therefore, her subsequent remarks had to be dishonest because her original remarks had to have been inaccurate.

    Another classic circular argument.

    There’e an old saying: when in a hole, stop digging.

    Greg, stop digging for your own sake.

  137. #138 itzac
    June 8, 2011

    So Sarah Palin goes on TV and basically says, “The Libruls are coming! The Libruls are coming! And they want to take our guns!” And we’re still trying to parse some 80 stuttered words for historical accuracy? Is that really what’s going on here?

  138. #139 Ken
    June 8, 2011

    I sometimes wonder what it must be like. I suppose there’s a possibility that this is a genuine case of Newspeak doublethink, and Palin’s followers are actually the type of people who could duckspeak the famous rally speech from 1984, “Oceania is allied with Eastasia and at war with Eurasia, and has always been at war with Eastasia and allied with Eurasia.”

    I think it’s more likely, though, that they do understand that Palin made a stupid and wrong statement, but they feel they have to defend it and her anyway. So they strain to convince people that it wasn’t really a mistake, all the while knowing – because as others have pointed out, this is the sort of stuff you’ve known since you were in grade school – that it was wrong. And that would, I think, hurt.

  139. #140 Raging Bee
    June 8, 2011

    kderosa, do you really think you can lie about what we’ve said, when what we said is still up there in plain sight? That’s as stupid as trying to lie about the color of the sky. Are you really dumb enough to think you’re fooling anyone?

    Also, once you’ve deliberately misrepresented our arguments and pretended you can’t see their coherence, you really can’t pretend you’re the smartest guy in the room.

  140. #141 Lynxreign
    June 8, 2011

    kderosa,

    You’ve already admitted that what Palin said was gibberish, why are you still trying to spin it otherwise?

    To counteract the OP’s spin.

    That’s inane. You’ve admitted what Palin said is gibberish, the OP said it was gibberish, all you’re doing at this point is an exercise in doublespeak.

    If you are going to engage in a parsing exercise of spoken words, do it fairly.

    Advice you would do well to heed. It is clear from watching the statement that she had no idea what she was talking about and was babbling to fill the silence. Sure some of the words she said were correct, most accidentally, but the larger picture was completely wrong. If you were to “parse” her words “fairly” you’d admit that instead of doing the PR trick of explaining what she’d “meant” to say.

    Reasonable people and history experts differ as to whether Palin’s words were ahistorical or not.

    No, they really don’t. A few history professors have shown their ignorance and her fanboys have desperately tried to find a way to claim she knew what she was talking about, but when you watch her statement the ignorance is clear as a bell.

  141. #142 https://me.yahoo.com/a/oyL5GDZppfCQf6Qv50sD0MryfMIx#e0d5c
    June 8, 2011

    The way Palin and her handlers decided to spin this is part of the reason for the ridicule.

    She’s on a tour and asked what she thought of it. Maybe the tour guides did give her the story about Revere being captured and warning/threatening the British. So, a reporter asks her and was attempting to say something along the lines of “I learned something new about Paul Revere’s famous ride. He was captured by the British and he warned them that the colonists were alerted and the Redcoats’ plans would not succeed.”

    Instead, it comes out as a word salad. Instead of admitting that what she wanted to say came out wrong, everyone bends over backward to show how what she said was right and how dare you question her.

    We think Palin is dumb because she has done nothing to convince us otherwise. If she says something dumb, it is just more proof.

    Other politicians say dumb things: Obama saying there are 57 states, Bob Dole referring to the ‘Brooklyn’ Dodgers in 1996, HW Bush talking about September 7 as the day Pearl Harbor was bombed. Like them or not, they all appear to be intelligent people and are more likely to be given a bigger pass when the (inevitable) verbal blunder is made. Palin has not earned that pass.

    Everybody makes verbal gaffes. How they are handled after the fact can be almost as important as the gaffe itself.

  142. #143 Raging Bee
    June 8, 2011

    Now that we’ve given Bible Spice all the ridicule she clearly deserves in absolute terms, I think it’s time we look at her lame grasp of history in relative terms — specifically, relative to her fellow Republicans’ grasp of history. We should start by acknowledging that Palin’s blithering does indeed have some grounding in historical fact: there really was a guy named Paul Revere, he really did make a conscious attempt to warn someone of something, and his actions really were part of the American Revolution. As pathetic as that sounds (and is), that’s more straws than many other Republicans can grasp.

    How much historical grounding do the supply-siders have for their claim that tax cuts stimulate economic growth and increase government revenue?

    How much historical grounding do Jack Kemp and Ron Paul have for their claim that the gold standard is a good idea in the present day?

    How much historical grounding do those same reactionaries have for their claim that the Fed is responsible for our current plight?

    How much historical grounding does Haley Barbour have for his revisionist claims about White Citizens’ Councils?

    Where’s the factual grounding for creationism or AGW denialism?

    How much historical grounding do the Christian right have for their wildly inflated claims regarding the beneficial and civilizing influence of their religion through history?

    How much historical grounding do the neocons have for their claim that Ronald Reagan singlehandedly caused the breakup of the USSR?

    How much historical grounding do Barton and his ilk have for their “Christian nation” fantasies?

    Where’s the historical grounding for the radical right’s current attempt to convince people that the New Deal CAUSED the Great Depression?

    How much historical grounding did the neocons have for their promise that Iraqis would greet US invaders as liberators and throw flowers at their feet?

    How much historical grounding do those same neocons have for their hysterical insistence that we have to attack Iran yesterday or we’re all doomed?

    How much historical grounding do the teatards (and their poor put-upon panderers) have for their claims that Obama caused all of our current economic troubles?

    How much historical grounding do reich-wing pundits have for their unending attempts to compare anything Obama does to Hitler?

    I’m sure there are more such examples than I have time to dig up, but you get my point. And mind you, I’m not even counting the birthers or Southern nationalists here. Sarah Palin is not an outlier here, by any stretch — she’s no more unmoored from reality than most other Republicans, and less unmoored than some. The only thing that sets her apart in this field is her total lack of self-discipline, which only makes her stupidity more obvious. But it’s the same (willful) stupidity. She’s part of a much larger and longstanding pattern.

  143. #144 heironymous
    June 8, 2011

    Look –

    She got it wrong. Paul Revere was out for a ride that night to try and warn the Minutemen – a term she should be familiar with – not in order to warn “the British that they weren’t going to be taking away our arms.” When she says “by ringing those bells” who knows what bells she’s talking about? I can only assume she meant the bells in the Old North Church that she just visited. “And to make sure as he’s riding through town to send those shots and bells that we were going to be secure and we were going to be free”

    To say, “well she was right because Americans did use bells” is revisionist history of what she said. She’s clearly describing her version of Revere’s ride.

  144. #145 dude
    June 8, 2011

    It doesn’t matter if she’s right or wrong. What matters is that she is MENTALLY DISABLED and it is extremely obvious from watching her fish for lies like a retarded child who lost his left shoe for the 15th time.

  145. #146 Morelis
    June 8, 2011

    I enjoy coming here and watch Mr. Derosa’s face get pounded into sand repeatedly.

  146. #147 kderosa
    June 8, 2011

    Just in case there is any remaining doubt as to whether the gun shots and bell ringing that Revere and the other riders had caused to happen as they alarmed the countryside were taken as a warning by the British regulars that they would meet colonial resitance if they tried to take away the munitions and gunpowder supplies at Concord, here is Fischer again describing what transpired after Revere had issued his verbal threats/warnings while being held captive:

    “They were now about a half mile from Lexington Green. Suddenly they heard a gunshot. Major Mitchell turned in a fury to [Revere] and demanded an explanantion. Revere told him that it was a signal ‘to alarm the country’. A few minutes later the riders were startled to hear the heavy crash of an entire volley of musketry, from the direction of Lexington’s meeting house. Probably it came from a party of militiamen who were clearing their weapons before they entered Buckman Tavern for a bit of cheer. The Regulars were appalled to hear it. Revere remembered that the volley ‘appeared to alarm them very much’.

    “At last the officers began to feel the full import of what Paul Revere had been telling them. His words of warning took on a stronger meaning when punctuated by gunfire. The sound of a single shot had suggested to them that surprise was lost. The crash of a volley appeared evidence that the country was rising against them. As they came closer to the Common they began to hear Lexington’s town bell clanging rapidly. The [other] captive Loring, picking up Revere’s spirit, turned to the officers and said, ‘The bell’s ringing! The town’s alarmed, and you’re all dead men!’

    Paul Revere’s Ride, David Hackett Fischer, (1994), chapter 8, citing Sanderson, Deposition; Jonas Clarke, “Narrative of the Events of April 19.” ms., LHS, 32.

  147. #148 Greg Laden
    June 8, 2011

    That’s all very interesting. What does it have to do with the blathering we see in the video above?

  148. #149 Keeper of The Creed
    June 8, 2011

    I did not know that Sarah Palin hated America but it does pose some further questions.

    Why does almost everyone inside the Obama administration hate America and why does almost everyone connected with Obama have either ties to domestice terrorism, Islamic terrorism, or communism?

    These issues we should be focusing on, not on what sarah palin says. Then again far left hatemonger commies are terrified of palin for unknown reasons. They just do not like to see strong independent CONSERVATIVE women. They are use to seeing militant aggresive mean nasty man hater women within the leftist ranks.

    Dear God, please elect Herman Cain for president and Ron paul for Vice president in 2012. Let’s see how many black hating leftists there are in America. I bet there are alot of racist liberals who hate Herman Cain becuase he is black. You racists!

  149. #150 kderosa
    June 8, 2011

    What does it have to do with the blathering we see in the video above?

    Are you really that dumb or are you purposely trying to look dumb (i.e., dishonest)?

  150. #151 Mike
    June 9, 2011

    Who is this Sarah Palin? Is she the one that is running this country into the ground? Must be nice to be a college professor and not have to concern yourself with the real issues of TODAY! Wow, Sarah Palin was wrong. Now that is a crisis, GROW UP is there nothing more important to you than pointing out when others are wrong.

  151. #152 Greg Laden
    June 9, 2011

    dumb (i.e., dishonest)

    kderosa, I’m starting to think you are a poe. i.e. does not mean what you think it means, and dumb != dishonest.

    Mike: I think we’re all wondering who Sarah Palin is, but why exactly is it that you want others to shut up about her?

  152. #153 dhogaza
    June 9, 2011

    far left hatemonger commies

    Harumph. I’m a long-haired commie hippy pinko freak, thank you very much. Do try to get your labels straight.

    (really, i was called that once when I was young, by a USAF Lt. Col. (Ret) nonetheless!)

  153. #154 Raging Bee
    June 9, 2011

    WE voted for Barack Obama, but we hate Herman Cain because he’s black? Wow, you right-wing trolls get dumber every day. I guess you can’t handle reality now that EVERYTHING your party did turned out to be a total failure…

  154. #155 kderosa
    June 9, 2011

    Parse the whole phrase:

    “purposely trying to [act] dumb” = dishonest

    Clearer?

    All I know at this point is that your opinion re Revere’s warning to the British is directly and specifically by Fischer (i.e., the guy who wrote the book on Revere’s Ride). And you’ve failed to either 1. retract/apologize for your error or 2. explained your position.

    Failing to do so is dumb. Purposely avoiding the issue (which also makes you look dumb) is dishonest.

    (I’m using these terms in the same you you’re using them against Palin.)

  155. #156 dean
    June 10, 2011

    Palin and derosa both seem to get their “facts” from the book mentioned here.

    http://thestrangestadventures.blogspot.com/2011/06/paul-reveres-ride-revised.html#comments

  156. #157 Jefff
    June 11, 2011

    Realizing that it’s probably too far down in this thread to make any difference, but I suspect that Palin is fuzzily remembering something that she saw on TV when she was a tot. And I think that Walt Disney is to blame. I have a fairly distinct mental image of a cartoon image of Paul Revere on a horse galloping through a village waving a handbell in the air over his head, drawn in blue and gray in the ugly quasi-cubist style that the Disney studios adopted during the early 1960s.

    We were all taught that this was history, and as valid as anything that Longfellow wrote; far superior to that dry stuff that we had to learn out of textbooks. Primary sources and testimonials of witnesses, what are those?

  157. #158 MikeT
    June 11, 2011

    Here it the real problem with Sarah Palin and why she is offensive. She is a non-sophisticated country bumpkin talkin nobody that is uncomfortably close to the presidency of the USA. I cannot see her sitting with the heads of state or intellectual leaders of the world representing us.

    She offends me because her views are simple on everything. Her knowledge goes 1 inch deep and this is why she does poorly when debated or someone trying to have an substantive discussion with her. She speaks in sound bytes and appeals to the ignorant.

    Lastly, what I am angry at and what I suspect most that dislike Palin is not Palin herself, rather we are angry that America is stupid enough to be falling for Ma Kettle for President. Who is putting dumb juice in our water?

    There, I said it!

  158. #159 Mike
    June 12, 2011

    Greg, I don’t think I said “others should shut up about her”. I think I said you should shut up about her. She is a nobody, I don’t know what you are trying to do by slamming her. If its to ruin any chance YOU think she might have of becoming President aren’t you wasting your time, do you really believe the American people would ever elect her? What I was trying to say was that a person in your position, who has the ability to actually reach more than just their small circle of friends could spend their time more productively than tearing someone down. If you want to turn your blog into a Political Science blog instead of a Real Science blog, this country has bigger problems than Sarah Palin, you might want to reevaluate your priorities.

  159. #160 dean
    June 12, 2011

    Mike, I’m sure Greg will give your opinion on how he should operate his blog all the consideration it deserves.

  160. #161 Greg Laden
    June 12, 2011

    OK, Mike, I’ll stop talking about Sarah Palin. No prob.

  161. #162 Jeff Sherry
    June 12, 2011

    Mike @159, the U.S. does have big problems, but aren’t the Palins, Pawlentys and Bachmans feeding those problems in the political sphere?

  162. #163 Cassie
    June 14, 2011

    Thanks for a wonderful and patriotically inspiring post. I, too, have lived in Boston and Albany and did the Saratoga and Ticonderoga trips with my family when we were little. When we lived in Medford along High Street, we’d watch Paul Revere go by each Patriot’s Day. You start to take the history the surrounds us for granted. Thank you for reminding me of its presence. This post is perfectly juxtaposed against today’s New York Times article about how kids in the U.S. are abysmally ignorant of U.S. history.

    And not for nothing, Sarah Palin is one dumb fuck.

  163. #164 Andy
    June 20, 2011

    The important message in this blog post is this: “But some Americans are special. Quite a few of them. Me for instance.” So Sarah Palin botched the Paul Revere story. If she were seeking tenure as a professor of colonial American history, she would fail. Instead, however, she’s a potential candidate for the Presidency where knowledge of Paul Revere’s exact words is not relevant to success. The current occupant was president of the Harvard Law Review. He must be very smart, right? Well, it may qualify him to teach in an elite law school, but it clearly has not helped him avoid a failed presidency. So, in this respect, you are correct – you are very “special” because you know the Paul Revere story better than Palin does. But her vast appeal comes in part from her rejection of precisely that sort of elitism. This is why liberals do not just dislike her; they hate her. Her popularity symbolizes a rejection of a world view that SAT scores are what make people valuable and loved. Your post, however, is lower and more mean spirited.

    The extended bragging about your youthful tours of Revolutionary War sites is cringe-inducing. What’s next: you’re going to show us your photo album and copies of your middle school history exams? The bubble of your superiority is burst by your snide comment that Palin “can see Russia from her Living [sic] room”. Of course, she never said that, but I guess you wouldn’t known because you haven’t had a picnic in Alaska or some such silly connection to authenticity.

  164. #165 Greg Laden
    June 20, 2011

    Andy, you are a moron.

    You’ll notice (well, you won’t but others have) that I used a literary trick (that’s a thing you do with writing) to spur people to notice the “I’m special” thing (as you did) and then to take it one tiny step further (you little brain didn’t handle this part well) to note that I’m talking about everybody who lives anywhere …. being special in their own relationship to their land, their history, their grizzly bears, whatever.

    (Imagine for a moment the next step that perhaps only a few of my readers noticed and that I did not point out …. the four-eyed clumsy easterner visiting the dude ranch or the alaskan bear country or whatever. And how that person has to have a little fucking humility about their knowledge and experience with the possible consequence of lacking such humility being the consumption of said dweeb by a griz, falling off a horse, etc. etc. But I digress. A digression is where the writer goes off on a topic that seems unrelated though most writers/speakers are not really digressing when they say they are. Just letting you know.)

    Anyway, Sarah Palin being ignorant of our nation’s history is not acceptable for two reasons. 1) She wants to run the thing (the nation) and no, she can’t do that well if she has no clue and 2) she and her followers, after her total botching of this, went to the next level of embarrassment of denying it all and making up versions of history to match her mistake rather than just saying “oh, well, yeah, that too” (at least). She wants to run this thing (the nation) and that approach will get us all embarrassed (well, not you, you’re probably not capable of that) on a near daily basis. She might be worse than George Bush Jr. in this regard.

    Her popularity symbolizes a rejection of a world view that SAT scores are what make people valuable and loved.

    Yes, sadly, there has always been an element in American politics that prefers the ignorant. And it is growing as of late. But these things come and go.

    Go being the operative word here, Andy. Or am I being too subtle?

  165. #166 Tommy S.
    August 25, 2011

    I find especially delightful that the Wikipedia, etc. revisionist histories of Paul Revere’s ride claim (along with numerous other misstatements of fact and historical inaccuracy) that the American colonists wished to secede from “the U.K.” when in fact the U.K. didn’t exist until January of 1801. I think what is most appalling is how time and again so many conservative politicians evoke pseudo-patriotism and religious fervor (well, Christianity) in the name of our founding father’s intent and beliefs wrongly to suit their own idea of how they think things ought to function in the U.S. No doubt Mr. Jefferson is rolling in his grave!

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