Sarah Palin came clean on Facebook on Tuesday: she is the victim of a scam.
The former governor of Alaska admitted that she submitted to an interview with a “disabled US Veteran” and only recently learned that the wheelchair-bound “veteran” was none other than comedian Sacha Baron Cohen in disguise.
Ah yes, we’ve all been there.
Palin wrote on her Facebook page that she was “duped” by Baron Cohen when she and her daughter travelled across the country for an interview they were told would be part of a “legit Showtime historical documentary.”
Not knowing, apparently, the network that houses “Billions” and “The Affair” would be unlikely to pursue this project (however “legit,”) Palin writes that she sat through the interview with Cohen until Cohen’s “disrespect of our US military and middle-class Americans” was too much.
Palin apparently cottoned on after Matt Drudge of the Drudge report tweeted of Baron Cohen’s new project, “Both Republicans and Democrats are getting caught up in the madness. Sacha has finked Cheney, Palin, Howard Dean, Alberto Gonzales, Bernie, Trent Lott, Patraeus, Ted Koppel, and more…BEWARE!”
The warning, however, comes too late. Palin will likely be a part of Baron Cohen’s mysterious new project. In her post she makes much out of Baron Cohen’s foreign-ness, his “wealthy corporate enablers,” and his willingness to exploit the identity of injured veterans to propel his project. In 2010 this would have been standard Tea Party blather. In 2018 Palin may find many more Americans sympathetic to her anti-elite rhetoric.
In a fit of righteous patriotism, Palin calls in her post for Baron Cohen and Showtime to donate the proceeds from the project to a charity for veterans. Baron Cohen and his wife, actress Isla Fisher, are actually major philanthropists, most recently giving one million dollars to causes supporting Syrian refugees. But she ends her post more like the Palin we remember well: “By the way, my daughter thinks you’re a piece of s**t, Sacha,” she writes. “Every honorable American Vet should feel the same.”
Sarah Palin calling Sacha Baron Cohen “a piece of s**t,” surely, is playing into the comedian’s hands. But by disguising himself as an injured veteran to trick a politician whose heyday has passed, isn’t Baron Cohen playing right into hers?
Jenny Singer is the deputy lifestyle editor for the Forward. You can reach her at Singer@forward.com or on Twitter @jeanvaljenny