For seven weeks, Peggy Noonan has really, really tried to find Sarah Palin worthy of the role she's running for. She's scrutinized every appearance for signs the Alaska governor could turn out to be the next Harry Truman. Unfortunately, she writes in the Wall Street Journal, "there is little sign that she has the tools, the equipment, the knowledge or the philosophical grounding one hopes for, and expects, in a holder of high office," and it's time for the right to admit it.
Conservatives who have questioned Palin's credibility as a candidate have been shunned or worse; Christopher Buckley was booted from the National Review his father founded. That intolerance is further proof, Noonan writes, that Palin reflects a deeper malaise. Her candidacy is "a symptom and expression of a new vulgarization in American politics"—and that's not good, either for conservatism or for the country.