I honestly believe that Bill Kristol and her other ghost handlers are cynical enough to believe that Sarah Palin could ride a celebreality rocket ship into the White House. In other words, I think they (and Palin herself) believe that there's no real need for her to be a substantive, dignified, informed, insightful public official.
They look at the climate of celebrity gossip and reality show mania and they see an opening in America's love affair with superficiality -- ready to exploit. In their view, where Ronald Reagan was a celebrity in the old-Hollywood framework, Palin is a celebrity in the vapid, celebudoof, Balloon Boy, reality show, new-Hollywood framework. Perfect match.
And it's dangerous. Idiocracy dangerous.
Adding... Regarding the Newsweek cover, if Sarah Palin wants to be taken seriously, then she needs to act like it. You can't be a winking airhead and expect people to portray you as anything other than a winking airhead.