Anne Lamott Opines On The Political Artist Formerly Known As PalinWriter Anne Lamott hates Sarah Palin so much she's not using her real name anymore. Instead she's calling her "Claw Washout," which is what you get when you type "Sarah" into the Sarah Palin Baby Name Generator (if you type in "Sarah Palin," you get "Flack Gobbler," which calls up the image of our favorite lipsticked pit bull devouring publicists). As much fun as the ol' SPBNG is to play around with (try typing in the names of Frank Zappa's kids for a weird-name match made in Heaven), it may not be a great idea to lift Sarah Palin to the status of She-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.As always, Anne Lamott has some good ideas. Go out and work for Obama, she advises, and talk about his strengths rather than Palin's (or McCain's) weaknesses. Drink a lot of water. Donate your old clothes to charity. But these are things we should be doing anyway, not because we're so poleaxed by the McCain-Palin ticket that we need some kind of coping strategy. Lamott says Palin fills her with "such existential doubt, such a sense of impending doom and disbelief, that only the Germans could possibly have words for it." And that the Alaskan governor's ignorance "makes anyone of decency feel nauseated — spiritually, emotionally and physically ill." This seems like a classic case of what my mom would call "letting them get to you," which is exactly what you weren't supposed to do to playground bullies, younger siblings, or anyone you hoped to defeat. Or — and perhaps this is more important — anyone you hoped to get along with. Thing is, Alaskans seem to love Sarah Palin — one poll put her approval rating at 80%. And one poll today has McCain getting 48% of the vote, while Obama gets only 47%. This means there are plenty of people — and plenty of decent people, too — who are thinking of voting McCain-Palin. If we want to change their minds, we can't act like their candidates are Lord Voldemort and the Wicked Witch of the West. We need to combat them as people, and to do that we need to call them by their names — even if Flack Gobbler and Claw Washout are funnier. A Call To Arms[Salon]