(Newser) – Score one for Sarah Palin on her bus tour—whether she’s running for president or "just testing a new reality show format." Palin’s post-gubernatorial moves don’t prove she’s seeking the White House, but they do show "an understanding that outrageous statements, calculated controversy, and the blurring of the line between candidate and celebrity are a sure route to lots of attention—and lots of money," writes Alyssa Battistoni in Salon.

We're used to rich guys using their wealth to become politicians, but Palin and Donald Trump have discovered "that high profiles can generate money rather than the reverse." They've got the fame and the "audacity" to "use their political career as an extremely lucrative piece of performance art." Should we be upset that none of this touches on the actual issues? "The self-promoting huckster" has been around for ages. On the other hand, "when the people we proclaim to be leaders don't take the democratic process seriously, why on earth should anyone else?"