It’s true, isn’t it? Palinmania’s always had a perverse “strange bedfellows” dynamic insofar as the base is convinced she’s the savior of conservatism while the left’s convinced she’s the ruin of it. Hence their mutual interest in raising her profile. (For a stark illustration of the point, hold your nose and watch the “Thank You” parody at HuffPo’s humor site.) It’s no mystery which camp Noonan’s in; what is a mystery is the extent to which each side’s simply reacting and overreacting to the other, goading each other into ratcheting up the praise and vilification in an endless backlash cycle. Douthat names that as a key omission from my post about the difference between Palin and Huck, in fact: While Huckabee’s always been chummy with the national media, notwithstanding the occasional Rolling Stone piece calling him a lunatic, she’s been derided since day one. Since there are few better gauges of conservative authenticity among the grassroots than press treatment — just ask Maverick — Huck will forever trail her in the great bona fides sweepstakes.

Long story short, the left’s laying a bet that she’ll be easy pickings down the line and the right’s laying a bet that she’s here to save the day. And the pot just keeps getting bigger and bigger. How lucky do you feel? Click the image to watch.