Four years can bring a lot of change, either positive or negative, for us all, KF...as you and I both know!
I am reminded of the fact that a lot of white men voted for Palin because they thought she was "hot." She's already demonstrated that being "hot" in a physical way doesn't necessarily make you a good politician and/or a good anything. (Henry the VIII thought Anne Boleyn was "hot" until he got her into bed and the reality just didn't live up to the fantasy. There are millions of similar histories to be researched, but you get my point, I'm sure!)
Palin is 44 years old now, and she'll be 48 years old by 2012...and who knows how many times a grandmother, but at least once. She's still mom to five kids...one of them a Downs Syndrome. While she will most likely do all she can to keep her looks intact, still as we females approach our 50th birthdays, we tend to go through certain biological changes which impact our appearance. It takes lots of effort to keep looking slim and unwrinkled. It's simply a biological fact. By 2012, Palin's book will have been ghost-written, and hopefully not become a best seller. She will have had many more opportunities to display her intellectual shortcomings.
The 2008 election, to me at least, seemed to say that most Americans (except for those who liked all the shallow things about Palin, including her looks, her ability to reproduce, and her hunting "skills," ) who voted want change and at least a modicum of thinking skills in our leaders. Obama has four years to cement that idea in the minds of Americans. I believe he will and in the process he will eliminate any chance that Sarah Palin will be running for president in 2012. She may try, but I don't think she'll get very far. Palin symbolizes a return to the Bush era, with Bush being replaced with a clone in skirts. Do Americans really want that? I know I do not.