Chabon Discusses Palin, Alaska

Michael Chabon, asked if John McCain was smart or stupid picking Sarah Palin for vice president, said “the answer is probably both more pathetic and more chutzpadich than either [choice] would imply.”

In a humorous interview with Jeffrey Goldberg at The Atlantic, Chabon, who backs Barack Obama and whose Yiddish Policemen’s Union took place in Alaska, discussed his views of the state and the election. Alaska, he said, is “crazy beautiful” but also a “dark place, and not just because it was literally dark much of time.”

“Also, I found it (the place, not the people) hostile, and not just in the sense that wilderness is generally said to be hostile,” Chabon said. “I kept thinking of that bit from Twin Peaks, where the sheriff says, ‘There is something very, very strange in these old woods. Call it what you want, a darkness, a presence.’ Almost everything humans have built there is unbelievably ugly. That might have something to do with the air of resentment given off by the underlying terrain.”

Asked if Obama had placated elderly Jewish fears about his potential election, Chabon said he wasn’t sure.

“The Israeli government, as you know, has squandered billions of shekels to date on one ill-starred placation program after another, with results that have been uniformly disappointing, leading it to issue the famous finding: You just can’t alter a kocker,” Chabon said. “But if anyone can do it, Obama can.”

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