Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Just Not That Into You

This posting by Meghan McCain is...well...illuminating.
As my book tour for Dirty Sexy Politics comes to an end, there are a few things that have surprised me about its publication. I expected some backlash from former campaign staffers (check) and a complicated conversation with my father (double check, he didn’t read it until two weeks before it hit stores). What I didn’t expect, however, was that instead of the media concentrating on my admission of almost overdosing on Xanax the day before the election, or my goal for a new “big tent” direction for the Republican Party, or any of the other racier confessions in my book, they only focused on Sarah Palin. In every interview and review it was all Sarah all the time.

Palin started haunting my book tour from day one when on Good Morning America I interrupted my interview with George Stephanopoulos to tell him, “My book isn’t just about Sarah Palin.” It was a domino effect from there. Backstage at most shows, I would beg producers to keep the Sarah Palin questions to only a portion of the interview, instead of dominating the whole conversation. I found myself fighting to convince people interviewing me that my book was about things other than Palin and interesting for many reasons. All authors have to convince the viewer of an interview that their book is worth reading—but I found myself more than anything just trying to separate myself and my story as far away from her as possible.

Everyone knows there is a media obsession with Sarah Palin, but I don’t know if everyone has quite realized that the obsession has become a fetishization. The further I got into my book tour last month, the more paranoia set in as I started questioning the idea that the only thing that made me interesting to some people was my association with Sarah Palin. Sarah Palin, not my father John McCain. And for that fact, it seems that the only thing that gets any kind of major media attention when it comes to women in politics is either Sarah Palin or her numerous impersonators. These are the people that are creating and dominating the political narrative for women in this country. In the Nashville airport in the midst of my book tour, I picked up the recent “Mama Grizzlies” cover of Newsweek which asks this very question. Why are only women like Sarah Palin getting nominated for elected office and receiving all of the media attention? This is the question that has been plaguing me since the release of my book
Then just as I reached the point where I woke up and elected to stop focusing on the media’s obsession with Sarah and to continue my own one woman revolution (if you will), Sarah Palin made it known to me via an email to a third party that she was not pleased with me or what I wrote in my book. I found it surprising but I had to see the humor and, of course, appreciate the obvious irony. It seems the Sarah Palin media obsession goes both ways. They are both mutually obsessed with one another and the relationship is cyclical. It is the chicken or the egg conundrum. Every tweet of Sarah’s makes headlines and every network puts what she says on its newsfeed. This is the era that we live in, and I’m just hoping both Sarah and the media will at some point make room for other opinions. In the meantime, I won’t hold my breath, but I also won’t quit speaking out for the women who aren’t just imitating her.
Sounds like the green-eyed monster is rearing its ugly head.

Could it be, Ms. McCain, that reviews like this one are accurate? Perhaps the book is so poorly written that interviewers are at a loss? Is it possible that no one is interested in your narcissistic self-indulgent rantings?

Could it be, Ms. McCain, that people just aren't that into you?


  1. Being on the flip side recently of mean & unnecessary comments about my own writing, I think it's unfair to judge McCain without reading her work first.

    Sure, it probably isn't the most profound book ever written, but it's her words, as she (I'm sure) thoughtfully arranged them. She did have a team of editors, so I'm sure it's not complete shit.

    Or maybe it is & I'm just uber sensitive after the comment tornado on my column.

    I guess if they're talking about you in one way or another, it can't be all that awful. Squinty, shifty eyes are better than none.

    Carry on. :)

  2. While I appreciate what you're saying, my focus was more on her POST than her book. Her post, in my opinion, sounds like a jealousy based rant.

    I read a few excerpts from the book, and they sound pretty much the same. As I said in my post on the review itself, I'm thinking of reading the book just to see if it's as bad as the press I'm reading.

  3. And by the way, don't listen to the beanheads! ;)

  4.'s all her. Whether you cut on her post or her book, it still cutting on her. It's her heart & soul. Her feelings.

    I guess putting ourselves out there opens up such criticism. I mean, in the grand scheme of things, by simpley posting comments on these comments, we're all being pretty narcissistic. ;)

    Love you, bunny! :)

  5. True, and this is all me, and your blog is all you. Once anyone puts themselves out there, it's open season. I'm certain not everyone likes my opinions, my style of writing, or my content. They're free to form their opinions about my opinions. That's what the first amendment is all about!

  6. I feel it's not about what's right in a legal sense. It's more about what's right in a moral sense. ;)