When Sarah Palin made her debut as the host of “Real American Stories” on Fox News on Thursday night, she described several triumphs of regular people over insurmountable odds, but she missed an obvious one: her own.
After her failed bid for the vice presidency, she was more or less told to head back to Alaska to serve out her term as governor — a kind of metaphorical kitchen.
Instead, she quit her day job and proceeded to become a one-woman national media empire, with the ratings and lucre to show for it.
With its tales of uplift and pluck, “Real American Stories” trades in the kind of easy sentimentality that provokes eye rolls among those of us who work in media while quickening the pulse and patriotic ardor of almost everyone else. At the beginning of the show, Ms. Palin promised that it would “reaffirm our pioneering spirit and unmatched generosity, here and around the world.”
And so it did, with two million people tuning in. It featured a young man with cerebral palsy who was inspired to walk by the love of a dog, a millionaire who financed the college educations of legions of underprivileged youngsters, and a soldier who died to save his brothers in arms. (LL Cool J’s interview was withdrawn after he complained that it was going to be used in Ms. Palin’s show, proving that not everyone was in the reaffirming mood.)