Wednesday, June 22, 2011
I applaud Stephen Bannon for doing the hard research, investing his hard-earned money, and revealing the hard facts that resulted in The Undefeated. His efforts allow us, the viewers, to take a pilgrimage with him into Governor Palin's successful career in politics. I applaud him, yes.
However, I will applaud more vehemently those who have the guts to see the documentary, especially those who admit they only know her through the media, those who have dismissed her as both undignified and unqualified to hold any meaningful office, and those who have been more comfortable lambasting her than learning about her. I will applaud them for being men and women enough to choose truth over childish narratives that have become the meat and drink of many a critic.
Tonight, I got a closer look into the career of Governor Palin as I was honored to preview this movie that has been heralded as a game-changer. Some have claimed that while The Undefeated will further endear her to her supporters, it will do nothing to change the minds of those not in her corner. I beg to differ. Having seen the documentary, I agree with the assessment of the people who have said this is a film for those who are on the fence. However, I'll take it even further and say it's also a film for those who heretofore have been dead-set against her. Disagree that a two-hour film can so drastically impact a person? Well then, I submit the same challenge Lisa Mei Norton did in her Big Hollywood article: I dare you to go see it. Anyone with a shred of decency, even just one honest bone in his body, wants truth, not propaganda. The Undefeated provides the truth about Governor Palin's record that has purposely been hidden, distorted, or ignored.
The film leaves no doubt as to Governor Palin's well-documented accomplishments. It reveals her as one of the "ordinary, hardworking people." It shows that with a servant's heart, a steel spine, and a sense of purpose, everyone can make a difference--even a hockey mom who simply loved her state more than she loved her own comfort, who was willing to take on the Corrupt Bastards Club, the establishment, and the unbelievers to battle for free enterprise, energy, and ethics. The film highlights the mayor who, through a commitment to developing infrastructure, made Wasilla into a booming business town; "the unpolitician" who, as governor, confronted and defeated the politics of big oil, took a red pen to the budget, and forward-funded public education; and the V.P. candidate whose love for America was only a reflection of her love for Alaska.
Through footage of her swearing-in ceremony in Fairbanks, we see the new governor upholding the same values she does today. It's clear that she has not morphed into another creature now that she's on the national stage. No, she promised her constituents all those years ago to fight on the side of competition, ethics in "your" government, and fiscal restraint for the benefit of our children's future. She insisted then, as she does today, that more government isn't the answer.
We see a governor hard at work with AOGCC, ACES, and AGIA. We see her doing what no one else had been able to do for 30 years in securing the TransCanada Alaska deal, taking this important resource development "from pipe dream to pipeline."
The Undefeated doesn't hold back the raw, vile attacks against Governor Palin, either. It places front and center the death wishes, the vulgar, sexually explicit language, and the Alinsky tactics used against her to derail her effectiveness as governor upon her return from the 2008 election campaign. It leaves no doubt why she resigned and why it was the only right thing that she could do, although it meant sacrificially handing over a job she loved. The unfounded, frivolous ethics complaints, although dismissed, were both paralyzing and bankrupting Alaska, so she stepped aside and allowed Sean Parnell to take over. She had always done what was best for Alaska. This was no different.
Governor Palin's stellar record, accomplishments, and expertise reveal a public figure who earned unparalleled approval ratings, worked tirelessly for the people, and made history in the process. The film shows someone who has done much already, yet has too much more to give to pack it in now. She is, without question, prepared to be President, and The Undefeated gives us the sense that she may just be heading in that direction, despite the attacks against her character and her record.
The Undefeated will further inspire the millions of Americans who were already, at the very least, acquainted with her record. However, it is a must-see for those who know that a person's record is as tied as anything else to the person herself and therefore necessitates an honest, unbiased evaluation. It is mandatory viewing for those who want to make informed, intelligent decisions about the future of our nation and those who seek to lead it. Furthermore, it beckons those who simply care about truth and aren't afraid to be confronted with it. In other words, my message to America is this: whether, when you consider Governor Palin, you identify as a supporter, an undecided, or even a self-proclaimed hater, this film is for you. Have the courage to watch it with an open mind, and be bold enough to take someone with you; the undeniable, unfiltered, and undefeated truth will take care of the rest.