The narrow question is this: Is Sarah Palin qualified to be vice president?
This argument also is over what qualities the country needs in a leader and what are the ultimate sources of wisdom.
In the current Weekly Standard, Steven Hayward argues that the nation’s founders wanted uncertified citizens to hold the highest offices in the land. They did not believe in a separate class of professional executives. I would have more sympathy for this view if I hadn’t just lived through the last eight years.
It turns out that governance, the creation and execution of policy, is hard. It requires acquired skills. Most of all, it requires prudence.
What is prudence? It is the ability to grasp the unique pattern of a specific situation. It is the ability to absorb the vast flow of information and still discern the essential current of events — the things that go together and the things that will never go together. It is the ability to engage in complex deliberations and feel which arguments have the most weight.
Democracy is not average people selecting average leaders. It is average people with the wisdom to select the best prepared.