Underdogs are called underdogs because the opposition holds all the advantages. Gladwell provides an example of a girl's basketball team composed of shorter girls. The coach found a way to win by adapting unconventional strategies that he adapted from his experience with cricket and soccer. That's how underdogs win. If the other side holds all the advantages, then you will lose if you play the game the other guy's way.
Underdogs win when they can find a way to play the game their way that negates the other guys' advantage. The other guys do not appreciate this and they tend to cry foul.
Let's take a look at the scoreboard and the playing field. The President is a Democrat, as his wacky side-kick. The Democrats have a veto-proof majority in the Senate and a wide majority in the House of Representations. They have all but the networks except one echoing their every talking point. And the Democrats managed to Alinski Mrs. Palin out of the governorship of Alaska.
Meanwhile Half the Republican party is falling over itself to say, "me too."
So, I'd say that Mrs. Palin would qualify as an underdog. And instead of going on the Sunday Morning chat shows or giving interviews with pundits who'll carry her words to the masses, she posts her opinions on Facebook.
Maureen Dowd cried foul last week.
She took a forum, Facebook, more commonly used by kids hooking up and cyberstalking, and with one catchy phrase, several footnotes and a zesty disregard for facts, managed to hijack the health care debate from Mr. Obama.
This is what we call a clue. Mrs. Palin has shown that she can surprise everyone, do things that seem to destroy her future, and then manage to win. When Ms. Dowd whines, "she's cheatin' I'm tellun," you know she's not playing the game her adversaries have laid out for her.
Here's the thing. Mrs. Palin started talking about death panels. And the entire news-government complex started by putting the term in scare quotes. And then they called her a liar. The Messiah In Chief proceeded to say she was Bearing False Witness.
Yeah, but people believe that unemployed hick on the cyberstalking channel instead of their betters like Ms. Dowd, et al. David 1, Goliath 0.
How can this be? ObamaCare is proposed to reduce health care costs. Sick people incur health care costs. Dead people have zero health care costs. And if sick people die sooner that reduces health care costs. Does this mean ObamaCare won't reduce health care costs?
Is there anything in the hundreds of pages the ObamaCare bill that specifically excludes Death Panels? Has any politician suggested adding language to the bill that will specifically exclude Death Panels? I guess a sneering denial will have to do.
When Malcolm Gladwell says:
Arreguín-Toft found the same puzzling pattern. When an underdog fought like David, he usually won. But most of the time underdogs didn’t fight like David.
Later he says:
This is the second half of the insurgent’s creed. Insurgents work harder than Goliath. But their other advantage is that they will do what is “socially horrifying”—they will challenge the conventions about how battles are supposed to be fought. All the things that distinguish the ideal basketball player are acts of skill and coördination. When the game becomes about effort over ability, it becomes unrecognizable—a shocking mixture of broken plays and flailing limbs and usually competent players panicking and throwing the ball out of bounds. You have to be outside the establishment—a foreigner new to the game or a skinny kid from New York at the end of the bench—to have the audacity to play it that way.
Either by accident or design, Sarah Palin has fought ObamaCare like David fought Goliath. I have no idea whether she can keep it up. I hope so, because we've got years of Democrats playing the role of Goliath ahead of us.