Sarah Palin strikes me as a fresh wind from the frontier, bringing the principles of small government and individual freedom back to the Republican party.  Whether or not McCain’s choice was a cynical effort to peel off some of the Hillary voters, a “hail Mary” to win back the conservative base, or a principled decision to set a place at the table for the values she represents, it’s now out of his control.  If McCain wins, Palin will remain a power in the Republican party and the presumptive nominee in 2012 or 2016.  This is a good thing.

The Left argues she has no foreign policy experience, which seems odd coming from a ticket that, on that basis, is surely upside down.  Experience is something that you can gain, and the hope and expectation has to be that McCain will not simply finish reciting the oath of office and then keel over.  Surely he’ll be around for some amount of time (and looking at his mother, probably quite awhile).  And during that time Palin can gain the experience she needs.  Unfortunately, the Democrats don’t have that buffer for Obama.  In short, experience would be nice, but the Democrats don’t offer more.  (We can argue about who has “executive experience” versus “campaign running experience,” and all of that, but it sheds little light.  Point is, Obama will have to gain experience at the same time he’s doing it.)

And experience alone is not that all that great.  Think about some State Department hack running for VP.  They may have lots of experience, but would you want that person in that office?  The principles behind the experience are just as or more important.  The State Department’s principles seems to be to get along, don’t rock the boat, cave to the European political “elite,” and compromise, compromise, compromise.  Come to think of it, isn’t that Obama’s principles?  But those are not American principles, and certainly not in a time of war, which we are going to be in for the next 30 years.

Anyway, pregnant daughters and Downs syndrome babies aside, Palin is a great thing for the GOP if McCain wins.