My initial choice of topics for today was about some shows I am eager to see for the fall season. But then the weekend straw vote in Iowa took place.

Suddenly, my mind was on politics. My head was on Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann and Rick Pawlenty.

Sarah Palin, image from

Does anyone know what Sarah Palin is up to these days? She has not participated in the events vetting presidential candidates but she comes close enough geographically to cause a disturbance from that event. Either the woman is crazy like a fox or she is a shameless publicity hound waiting for the field to decrease considerably before she finally throws in her hat.

Considering she resigned her position as Governor of Alaska instead of building a better record, considering her post-governor life has been filled with writing books and book tours and speeches without adding anything to the political discussion of our nation that is useful, it makes me wonder if this woman wants to run for president.

I realize Palin considers herself a ‘maverick.’ I realize she feels that she is breaking the rules and the boundaries and working to change the system. But at some point you begin to act like a candidate if you actually want a particular office. And that means making compromises by showing up at party events meant to present potential candidates.

You might want to fashion yourself after Michele Bachman, who is doing just that. The woman might drive me crazy with her absurd remarks and completely wrong-headed thoughts. Like today when she makes a remark about it being Elvis Presley’s birthdate. Umm, that was in January and his death date is today. I remember it being breathtakingly hot when he passed and we were all crying.

Bachmann from February 2011, image from Wikipedia.

But you have to give her credit for appearing to be a serious candidate. She shows up at the debates and straw polls. She makes campaign stops and gathers supporters in what she is now calling her “take back our country” tour.

You cannot deny that Bachman is inflexible in her viewpoints. You cannot deny that her husband has potential to embarrass her. After all, he runs a clinic that claims to be able to reverse homosexual behavior. But she is always well put together and speaks clearly. (I almost hate the woman just because she always looks great but that is being petty on my part.) People understand and like her. I suspect her handlers will teach her to be a little softer  and smoother in her delivery to avoid sounding shrewish.  They really need to work with her on pop culture references as well.

But she looks like a serious candidate while Palin is a sideshow. Showing up and acting like you are a candidate without gravitas makes you into a sideshow, Sarah. Maybe you should do something such as declare for President already. That might make the rest of us take you, well, seriously.

Pawlenty at a book signing in Feb. 2011, image by Gage Skidmore at Wikipedia

On a sad note, former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty has decided to end his campaign for president. He is a guy who has experience getting his state’s budget in hand. He is a Christian and the kind of guy who could have fought well against Obama. Pawlenty was the first in his family to go to college, became a lawyer and went into politics. Did I mention he is second generation American as his parents are German immigrants? It would have been the ultimate American Dream fight, of two men who pulled themselves up by their bootstraps to become huge successes.

Sadly, Pawlenty does not have a deep war chest or name recognition despite at one time being on the short list for McCain’s running mate. What a race that would have been had McCain picked him instead of Palin.

So now we have Mitt Romney, Michelle Bachmann and newcomer Rick Perry.

Can we say fodder for the late night comic entertainment?