Palin Speaks to Investors in Hong Kong [UPDATED]
Surprise, surprise. The New York Times actually runs a positive story on Sarah Palin:
HONG KONG — Sarah Palin, in what was billed as her first speech overseas, spoke on Wednesday to Asian bankers, investors and fund managers.
A number of people who heard the speech in a packed hotel ballroom, which was closed to the media, said Mrs. Palin spoke from notes for 90 minutes and that she was articulate, well-prepared and even compelling.
“The speech was wide-ranging, very balanced, and she beat all expectations,” said Doug A. Coulter, head of private equity in the Asia-Pacific region for LGT Capital Partners.
“She didn’t sound at all like a far-right-wing conservative. She seemed to be positioning herself as a libertarian or a small-c conservative,” he said, adding that she mentioned both Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. “She brought up both those names.”
Mrs. Palin said she was speaking as “someone from Main Street U.S.A.,” and she touched on her concerns about oversized federal bailouts and the unsustainable American government deficit. She did not repeat her attack from last month that the Obama administration’s health care proposals would create a “death panel” that would allow federal bureaucrats to decide who is “worthy of health care.”
Cameron Sinclair, another speaker at the event, said Mrs. Palin emphasized the need for a grassroots rebirth of the Republican Party driven by party leaders outside Washington.
A number of attendees thought Mrs. Palin, the former vice presidential candidate, was using the speech to begin to broaden her foreign policy credentials before making a run for the presidency in 2012.
“She’s definitely a serious future presidential candidate, and I understand why she plays so well in middle America,” said Mr. Coulter, a Canadian.
[Regional marketing consultant Melvin] Goodé, an African-American who said he did some campaign polling for President Obama, said Mrs. Palin mentioned President Obama three times on Wednesday.
“And there was nothing derogatory in it, no sleight of hand, and believe me, I was listening for that,” he said, adding that Mrs. Palin referred to Mr. Obama as “our president,” with the emphasis on “our.”
Mr. Goodé, a New Yorker who said he would never vote for Mrs. Palin, said she acquitted herself well.
“They really prepared her well,” he said. “She was articulate and she held her own. I give her credit. They’ve tried to categorize her as not being bright. She’s bright.”
Wall Street Journal: Palin understands China better than Obama does.
Also from WSJ:
"Palin Addresses Asian Investors"
"Excerpts of Sarah Palin’s Speech to Investors in Hong Kong"
UPDATE #2 (24 September)
"THE OTHER SPEECH - Sarah Plays Hong Kong"
... Sarah Palin appears to be pursuing a strategy, for now, of staying out of the media, letting her ideas speak for themselves, while reducing the implicitly demeaning emphasis on her persona, including her personal appearance. At the same time, she builds suspense about an eventual, inevitable “return” in dramatic living color. She stokes hunger among her political following just for the sound of her voice and the sight of her smile, but without ever quite going away. More than a few observers, even enemies and adversaries, have been forced to acknowledge her demonstrations of power at a distance - the fact, for instance, that a couple of Facebook entries and an op-ed have repeatedly forced the President to respond directly to her claims, arguably losing rhetorical control while indulging in his personal attacks on her. That he resists the mention of her name even while “everyone” knows, whispers, and passes it on, inflates her further: She has become the “one who must not be named,” looming like some psychic or supernatural force in the Obamian political drama...