Posts Tagged ‘Sarah Palin’

Gone Fishin' | Photo: www.alaskaseafood.org

Gone Fishin' | Photo: http://www.alaskaseafood.org

In a world full of leaders with massive, blinding egos, ours takes the cake. To say that Sarah Palin is inconsistent is like saying Michael Jackson is not getting enough press coverage. Just days after announcing her ‘official’ premature extraction from Alaska’s highest office, Sarah Palin is now fishing in Bristol Bay. Yes, the very same Bristol Bay in which she is in favor of exploiting for mineral wealth via the Pebble Mine.

Her support of Anglo and Northern Dynasty Minerals is now common knowledge (see: https://tspey.wordpress.com/2008/08/27/down-but-not-out/) made more evident by the fact that the Palin family has taken gifts and paid trips from pro-Pebble Mine suppporters (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/09/25/AR2008092503988_pf.html).

In an age when one’s actions speak louder than their lies even steadfast supporters of Palin are now smacking into the broken glass-lined wall of reality. Yes, we have been hoodwinked into thinking that this person was much more than what she really is.

Alaskan politics of late has been marred with corruption. Speculation abounds that Palin’s decision may be a pre-emptive action against this nasty ‘c’ word. Alaskans have been forcefully spoon-fed this type of mush for too long. The time has passed for personal-gain politicos who have worn out their welcome.

The decision to quit makes no sense politically. What is the real reason for Palin’s fall? Family? Tired of the spotlight? Greed? So far up in Alaska, the latter is the speculative and all too common assumption.

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Kind of like voting...

Kind of like voting...

The election season is nearly over. The only thing that remains is the most important right and privilege of all Americans. While waiting in line today at the polls look at the faces of people who just voted. In its purist form, minus the millions of $ spent, minus the negative attacks punched and counter-punched, voting is truly a beautiful thing.

The past couple of weeks have solidified this notion in seeing hundreds of early voters in Alaska lined up for hours in 10-20 degree weather. Like die-hard steelhead fishermen standing mid-river pelted by storms, voters come out for the hopes of something worth all of the effort.

The powerful winds for the last eight long years has America straining to hold up an overhanging, top-heavy cornice.

There are two distinct choices in this election. One choice would continue to blow the wind upward and take away from the foundation. The other will provide a constant force that encompasses the whole mountain. This choice will thoughtfully look ahead and protect the valley below from catastrophe.

The beauty in voting lies in the fact that as an individual and as Americans, we can always strive to do better not just for ourselves but for our future generations.

“We have the power to make this the best generation of mankind in the history of the world – or to make it the last.” – John F. Kennedy

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Photo courtesy of the NY Times

Photo: NY Times

Thursday night on Letterman, John McCain made his belated appearance. During the first few minutes, there was a sense of nervous decency between the two. Dave seemed to have a hold on his understandable rage towards McCain for the senator’s bold faced lie to Letterman. His last scheduled appearance was suddenly canceled via phone by McCain just 1.5 hours before showtime. His reason is now well known in that he had to bail back to Warshington to lead his constituents in fixing the economic crisis. The problem is that McCain did not leave that day. He met with Katie Couric. He stayed the night in NYC.

When asked by Dave about this slight, McCain answered, “I screwed up.” 

Truer words could not be said.

So here are my ‘Top 10 Reasons Why David Letterman is Our Hero’:

10.  Dave let McCain return to the Late Show after lying to his face.

9.  Dave listened to McCain lie to his face again when McCain gave excuses about Obama’s alleged supporters shouting alleged hateful remarks towards McCain.

8. Unlike others in the mainstream media, Dave asked questions on our minds and did not let up.

7.  Dave went pitbull on McCain about Sarah Palin and did not release his jaws even when McCain started squirming in his chair. When Dave asked if Palin was his first choice to possibly lead the country for the next 4 or 8 years or through the next 9-11 attack it was so clear during McCain’s response (‘absssolutely’) that he was lying.

6. Dave asked McCain if he thought it was ok for Palin to say ‘Obama pals around with domestic terrorists’. McCain said, ‘Well he does’. Hmmm…

5. Dave answered by saying, ‘well Obama was 8 and Ayers was 28. So I’ll give her that one’. But she keeps saying terrorist(s) plural.’

4. McCain had no answer for ‘that one’.

3. The tension at this point during the grilling was so uncomfortably wonderful.

2. Dave then asked, ‘Isn’t it true that you are friends with G. Gordon Liddy and that you attended a fundraiser in his house?’

1. Oh snap Dave. At this point I was seated up in bed, wide-eyed with mouth open. They cut to commercial. When the show returned, the camera did not show the stage. Disorder. Cut to another commercial. Hmm, something was going on. Did the McCain volcano explode? Only the audience knows…

Ok I admit, the list is not really a top ten list per se but an observation of a REAL interview under the veil of late night comedy. Letterman was masterful. The crescendo of the discourse successively drowned out McCain’s usual repetitive rhetoric. Peeling away the thicker layers of McCain’s onion, Letterman revealed the delicate truth. The audience was treated to the real John McCain with his real-time lies and his lack of depth in regards to his VP pick.

The 15 minutes of McCain v Letterman was a classic bout of two heavyweights. Dave came out unscathed with McCain badly beaten and crawling to his corner. Nothing could save McCain this night. Nothing can save McCain in this election.

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Breaking News:

Troopergate hearing (Updated: 12-0 vote to release the report)

A group of 8 republican and 4 democratic Alaskan Legislators voted unanimously to release the findings of the Abuse of Power Investigation by Steven Branchflower.

Finding Number One (via Mudflats):

For the reasons explained in section IV of this report, I find that Governor Sarah Palin abused her power by violating Alaska Statute 39.52.110(a) of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act. Alaska Statute 39.52.110(a) provides

“The legislature reaffirms that each public officer holds office as a public trust, and any effort to benefit a personal or financial interest through official action is a violation of that trust.”

More from Mudflats:


Anchorage Daily News: Troopergate report: Palin abused power


The Branchflower Report PDF:



Palins Repeatedly Pressed Case Against Trooper – NY Times, Oct. 9th

Troopergate from the beginning

State to review Palin per diem payments

The state finance director will review whether future per diem payments made to Gov. Sarah Palin for nights she stays in her Wasilla home should be considered income. 3:36 PM

Alaska Politics blog: Did Palins underpay taxes?

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Alaskans converged towards one of the 2 rallies scheduled in downtown Anchorage on Saturday. The clear winner in attendance and spirit was the Obama / Biden rally held downtown with an estimated attendance of well over 1,200 (I would guesstimate 1,800 at the height of the rally). The other was a 300 person affair for McCain / Palin that was as symbolic as it was pathetic.


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The lone vice presidential debate is over and who was left standing? The McCain/Palin ticket’s targeted lowering of expectations in the week leading up to the debate (‘Joe six pack’) may have had an effect on a small percentage of Americans. However, after watching the debate I kept my eye on the real issues affecting Americans (the economy, healthcare, education) and how clearly the questions were answered.

Joe Biden was the clear winner. His gentlemanly handling throughout the debate was subtle and necessary. Biden’s most memorable moment came during his ‘I understand’ part of the debate in which he spoke about the death of his wife and child and of the challenges he faced as a single father. For a brief second every American including Palin fell silent after Biden’s self-effacing release of pure emotion. His touching tribute resonated with viewers. Biden’s moment epitomized both his strength as an individual and the strength of a country in which he rose from the deepest pain to a life worth living.

The Middle and Lower Class Americans struggling with bills, rent, mortgages, medical expenses, food and gas witnessed the truth that is so difficult to find in politics today. Biden’s compassion for struggling Americans was a refreshing turn from Palin’s relentless rhetoric.

Palin relied on superficial strategy accentuated with winks and down-home lingo laced throughout the much anticipated debate. Her reliance on her notes and memorized lines had no substance. At the end of Palin’s closing statement it was painfully clear that her answers were not hers. At the end of Biden’s close, one could see a candidate worthy of the vice presidency.

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The presidential campaign to this point has been a long, tough battle between two major parties. With less than 60 days left to tack on more bruises and fractures from both sides of the aisle let’s take a step back. Take a much needed deep breath.

The media’s obsession on vetting an unknown VP candidate is spreading into an all out blizzard. The world has zeroed in on a tiny strip mall town in Alaska. The blogosphere has turned its voracious appetite on the tasty bits that are immediately spread to the masses. The beauty of such real time tracking is its speed and breadth. The danger is when an unsubstantiated allegation goes viral and tarnishes a target unfairly. It is important to view both sides of an issue with as open a mind as possible. This is easier said than done.

Imagine yourself as a candidate or of a family member and one begins to see things differently. Sure, you can say that they are fair game because of their choice to run for such a high stakes office. But every person deserves a fair examination. One might argue that the unknown GOP VP pick is making it impossible to get to know her. Other than a couple of short public appearances and one major speech viewed by over 40 million or so Americans, most non-Alaskans know nothing about her.

In many people’s view, a person, particularly a public servant, is defined by their past, by their friends, by their family and by their actions. Please read the links below with an open mind, a grain of salt and decide for yourself:


A Letter About Sarah Palin from Anne Kilkenny…


Palin pressured Wasilla librarian…



Todd Palin subpoenaed in firing probe





Former political ally: Lyda Green


Good friend: Bob Lester







As Wasilla Mayor…

Palin got zoning aid, gifts in Wasilla

Sarah Palin’s record on environment is abysmal…





Experience…. or lack thereof…


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In terms of maps of the U.S., Alaska has long been neglected. Each morning on tv, the national weather maps represent our massive state as a shrunken-head version of itself tucked off in the left corner next to Hawaii… that is until today. 

McCain’s announcement in his choice of Vice President of the United States is… Sarah Palin? I thought last Tuesday’s statewide election results were a nightmare in which Palin played a starring role. Palin publicly stated her ‘personal opinion’ on how she would vote against the Clean Water Initiative six days before the vote of her people at a televised news conference. The CWI would have placed important clean water and salmon protections in place for the proposed Pebble Mine.

The Pebble Mine is THE mother of all open pit nightmares that is planned by British mining giant Anglo American and it’s junior Canadian partner Northern Dynasty Minerals. At stake is the world’s largest sockeye (red) salmon fishery in the world as the backers of Pebble plan on digging right at the headwaters of the Kvichak and Nushagak river systems which are home to the most prolific runs of salmon worldwide.    

Add that to the continuing investigation to her alleged abuse of power in regards to the firing of her Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan over a family-related  issue regarding her sister and her ex-husband state trooper. Recorded phone messages from Monegan revealed Palin’s and her administration’s fabrications that no phone calls were ever made pressuring the highly respected life-long cop Monegan to fire said trooper. Monegan refused to comply and was promptly dismissed.

Palin was elected on a platform of a clear and transparent government. A bold new symbol of change against an Alaska tarnished by corruption and greed… sound familiar? Sadly, in just two short years her promises have fallen sickeningly short and mirrors that of former governor Frank Murkowski’s embarassing tenure.

Shame has befallen this once great state. I have heard it from conservatives and liberals alike. We have been stunned into submission. Corruption is now a household term we eat daily for breakfast and go to bed with each and every night. We are a state with so much potential but so few leaders. Now America has been introduced to Alaska’s Sarah Palin. Is America this desperate?

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The voters of Alaska have spoken… for the mining industry. There is still a lot that can be done to stop Pebble Mine from being developed. The 71,456 of you who voted yes for Clean Water, for Wild Salmon and for Bristol Bay must emerge from this foreign money sponsored defeat. Spread the word. Write letters to your elected representatives. Sure our governor let her Alaskan constituents down by choosing sides 6 days before the vote. Be it her naiveté as a relative political rookie or her blatant disregard for real Alaskans. Or maybe she was swayed by the same mining lobby and industry that frankly had Murkowski in the back of their gold and copper lined pockets.

The timing of her remarks and of the state’s website ‘explaining’ the CWI #4 is very questionable. Now we are forced to rely on a permitting process that is overseen by her governorship and one that was substantially weakened by the former gov Murkowski.  

All hope is not lost as I spoke to many who voted against #4 that say hell no to Pebble. Unfortunately, no law can be written that singles out the development of the one mine on everyone’s mind.

Anglo and Northern Dynasty will go through the permitting process dotting all the i’s and crossing all the t’s. They will make promises and compromises and assure Alaskans that their first priority is maintaining an environmentally sound open pit mining process.

To the 57% of Alaskans who put your faith in the foreign mining companies who will primarily benefit from Pebble, I truly hope they succeed in something no other mine the size of Pebble has ever been able to do. I hope the toxic pollution that is now allowed in the mixing zones (via Frank Murkowski) will somehow defy physics by not flowing by way of gravity. I hope the salmon and people who live downstream will have miraculously developed immunity to cyanide and heavy metal mining by-products.

In the end, the gravity of the situation has been veiled by the foreign mining interests and those that support these interests in our state government. Pebble can still be stopped. Pebble must be stopped.


RP (The Big Pull) upon closer inspection of the prop 4 vote:

Looking at the per district results, it seems the closer you get to the actual mine site, the more fervently pro 4 the votes were… 


…It’s a pretty strong talking point to say that those immediately affected by the mine are most in opposition.  Does NDM really support localities?”

I would strongly say no to this rhetorical question. The fact is that former gov Frank Murkowski’s Executive Order effectively did away with local input. Once formidable permitting steps (put in place to protect water and salmon) are now funneled into one department (Department of Natural Resources). Alaska’s current gov Sarah Palin has the power to rescind said order but has not done so. After her remarks 6 days before the vote of her people in opposition to Clean Water, one can see why she has not taken action.

Read more on Murkowski’s Executive Order: 


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Alaska’s own Governor Sarah Palin spoke out Wednesday in opposition to the Clean Water Initiative #4… Palin cannot advocate for or against a ballot measure, officially, but she took what she calls “personal privilege” to discuss Ballot Measure 4.”Let me take my governor’s hat off just for a minute here and tell you, personally, Prop 4, I vote no on that. I have all the confidence in the world that the Department of Environmental Conservation and our Department of Natural Resources have great, very stringent regulations and policies already in place. We’re going to make sure that mines operate only safely, and soundly,” said Palin. 

In addition to Palin’s remarks, the State of Alaska has created a website “explaining” what prop #4 entails. It is clear from browsing the site where the state’s position is on the Clean Water measure (against).

Alaskans for Clean Water has filed a complaint against DNR for the recently-launched state website meant to clarify the issue for voters. The group believes the state is illegally staking its position on the proposition before Alaskans vote next Tuesday. A spokesman for the group called Palin’s comments “highly unethical.” The former Bristol Bay commercial fisher Palin has fallen as quickly as she has ascended. She was elected on her ‘transparency in government’ pledge. (google: “Frank Bailey” “Sarah Palin” “abuse of power” for more details).

In addition to Palin’s remarks what is MOST troubling is that the figures and charts on the state website are THE SAME data provided by the mining industry. How can we trust DNR to protect clean water when the mining industry is supplying the data to the state?

Who can we trust? It is up to Alaskans to protect our water for the future. Vote YES on the Clean Water Initiative Prop #4 on Tuesday, August 26th.


As of 8/21/08 APOC (Alaska Public Offices Commission) ruled that the state website http://www.dnr.state.ak.us/opmp/mini…nitiatives.htm must be taken off line. APOC also said that no state official should criticize Measure 4 publicly. Also, APOC contested DNR’s claim on the Web site that Measure 4 would apply to existing mines.

How sad is it that the site had many thousands of hits. The damage is done and who knows what the ramifications will be. Alaska is truly in a sad state of affairs. Corruption is rampant, mining companies seem to have a heavy hand in the governor’s administration, in DNR, and on and on… I apologize for my ramblings but are we that blinded by $ signs?

Alaskans cannot afford to put blind faith in our governor, in her DNR and the British and Canadian mining companies that can almost taste Pebble. Vote YES on #4.

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