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McCain's Pick Palin: Don't Disqualify Her for the Wrong Reasons


A friend—an educated, extremely successful executive who has spent her entire career in a male-dominated industry—I was talking to about McCain’s pick of Sarah Palin—had a different take on the pick than mine: “I’m tired of old white men appointing women who aren’t qualified just because they think that will appease women. It happens all the time in my business.”

So, McCain may not be thinking like a CEO , but it looks like he’s thinking like a lot of bosses who tap people who don’t have the goods. Potential is one thing; proven ability is another.

Within minutes, another friend (also a successful female in a very male-dominated field) called me indignant about what she calls “Palin’s utter lack of qualifications.”

It's frustrating, disappointing, and demoralizing when people get selected for promotions, jobs, or any kind of position that they didn't earn on the merits of their accomplishments. And it happens for lots of different reasons. And it seems to have happened here with Sarah Palin. It's not that I think her former stints as a Miss Alaska contestant and a sports journalist disqualify her. It's that I don't think being mayor of a tiny town and a governor with less than two years of experience qualifies her.

How many times have you seen someone get a job they don't have the qualifications for? Has it ever happened to you? And do you think she's qualified?


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