On Friday, a two-year-old request to release the emails of former VP candidate Sarah Palin while she was Governor of Alaska was finally granted. Many members of the mainstream media descended upon Juneau to collect the emails, which were distributed in hard-copy in 50 pound boxes.
The idea was that the emails, sent from Palin’s Yahoo account during her tenure, might contain some interesting information. The thought makes sense, as the release of the emails was delayed for years following the initial request. State officials have also redacted many of the publicly released emails and held on to a couple thousand, prompting some to wonder what might be in the unseen portions of the trove.
But as it turns out, the emails aren’t proving to be a source of any new, earth-shattering information about the former Governor. Even as many major news outlets crowdsourced the investigation of the emails, nobody has been able to find anything damning or really even remotely newsworthy.
The only thing that has really made any sort of news, at least in the Twitter world was the headline that Palin writes emails at an 8th grade level. While quite easy to make a joke about that considering Palin’s history of sometimes perplexing answers to questions and her recent Paul Revere gaffe, it’s important to note that writing on an 8th grade reading level is actually pretty normal. Conciseness and brevity, both of which the analysts say Palin appears to have, can “lower” the reading level. In comparison, ‘The Gettysburg Address” was a 9.1 on the Flesch-Kincaid test and Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech scored only .6 higher than the Palin samples, at an 8.8.
Two prominent Twitter users have come out against the media for their obsession with the Palin emails. Ashton Kutcher and wife Demi Moore have expressed their disdain for what Kutcher calls an “over reaching” media –
@aplusk: As much as I’m not a fan of Sarah Palin I find sifting through her emails repulsive & over reaching media #palinemailSo agree! RT
The two celebrities aren’t the only ones to weigh in on the coverage of the emails, as Twitter has interesting comments from both sides of the aisle –
#Palin emails. Renewal of her Economist subscription? Love notes to McCain? #palinemailNot sure what everyone was expecting from
@mrskutcher @aplusk The merging of paparazzi tabloid mentality and politics #palinemail
@andilinks: Intense interest in #PalinEmail reveals the vapidity and shallowness of the leftBut Weinergate is vital? RT
In my opinion, while it’s true that transparency in government is vital, this Palin thing does feel like an obsession with a celebrity rather than a real need to find important information.
Let’s leave it with The Daily Show to do what it does best – sum everything up perfectly with comedy.