No, no, no. This is really sort of insane. What we saw tonight was a tolerably effective Palin as a function of being well-prepped—a Palin who did well, at least relative to expectations, by sticking to her prefab talking points instead of getting lured into attempting to respond to the questions. She pulled it off because she ignored all the “helpful advice” from the “let Sarah be Sarah” crowd and memorized her lines well. But please, nobody watching her shuddering, heel-tapping, moose-in-headlights act for the first hour, or her transparent reliance on notes throughout, can contend with a straight face that we got a moment of spontaneity from Palin in there. She did what she needed to do—avoided a meltdown—but it was the opposite of “authenticity.”
Update: Speaking of which: data point 7,532 in support of the theory that Andy McCarthy is completely fucking nuts. Don’t say Ifill did a decent job! We can’t play the refs if you say that! Gaaaaaaa!