“How we loved you then,” Jean-Paul Sartre wrote of Albert Camus during their acrimonious split in 1952. This simple but deeply sad phrase sprang to mind the other day when I was informed of Andrew Sullivan’s latest descent into unreason. The occasion was, of course, Sarah Palin’s new book; and Sullivan’s missive went, in part, like this:
This is only the second time in its nearly ten-year history that the Dish has gone silent. The reason now is the same as the reason then. When dealing with a delusional fantasist like Sarah Palin, it takes time to absorb and make sense of the various competing narratives that she tells about her life…. She is a deeply disturbed person which makes this work of fiction and fact all the more challenging to read. And the fact that she is now the leader of the Republican party and a potential presidential candidate, makes this process of deconstruction an important civil responsibility.
As many, including myself, expected, this “deconstruction” was in fact driven by what Sullivan called Palin’s “fantastic story of her fifth pregnancy”; that is, Sullivan’s conspiracy theory that Sarah Palin faked her pregnancy and the child known as Trig is actually someone else’s, most likely one of her daughters.