Sarah Palin In A Nut Shell: Going Rogue: Book Analysis: Events Leading To Resignation. Resignation And Escape To Dillingham.

May 30, 2010 by · 2 Comments
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Sarah states, in Alaska, the cost of defending suits for ethics violations while in office is to be borne by the officeholder. This soon amounted to $500,000, a sum equivalent to several years’ income for the Palin Family. At the time she had not established a legal defense fund to accept donations for this (later she did along with Sarah PAC? The Defense fund and SaraPAC raised $250,000 and $1,000,000 respectively as of July 2009 and through the end of 2009 Sarah PAC raised 2.1 million, spent 1.1 million with $ 900,000 in the bank and doled $64,000 out to candidates. Recently Palin’s personal net worth has been estimated at $12,000,000, from book sales, speaking and other media fees.)

Because of the time spent on responding to Freedom Of Information Act Requests and Ethics violations lawsuits she had no choice but to resign as Governor of Alaska. She is not a “quitter” but because of the abuse and ridicule that was heaped on her family and the financial situation she reluctantly resigned from office on July 3, 2009. Then she left for remote Bristol Bay for the Salmon Run and spent the early part of July netting Salmon.

There was only one local television station present for the resignation announcement which took place in her back yard with Lake Lucille as a backdrop. The news soon hit the national media and reporters were dispatched to interview Sarah on her future abandoning their Fourth of July weekend plans.

There is no cell phone service on Bristol Bay but there is a land line. She announced she would be available for interviews in Dillingham (Pop. About 2500) on Bristol Bay between tides and invited all the media except for CBS. (Thus she endeared herself to the media once again, by announcing only to a single local station on the day before a long holiday weekend and departing for a remote location.) She says she scheduled her announcement and the subsequent press conferences and interviews at a location with poor communications facilities to show the media what rural Alaska looked like.
As a result the reporters had to give up their weekend with their families to cover her resignation. (Thus the champion of family values is pretty callous about the families of the media. The irony of all this is it’s the media that shaped her public persona and established her as a celebrity.  Maybe Joe McGinniss will tell who Sarah Palin  really is. )

She alleges that she was the victim of a liberal political assault that drove her from office by harassment much like Newt Gingrich was in the nineties. She claims this was a tactic developed by Saul Alinsky a community organizer from Chicago whose strategies and tactics were adopted by Rahm Emmanuel, as stated in his book “The Thumpin”. (Compared to Whitewater and the Ken Starr’s political persecution of the Clinton’s her treatment was mild and it’s obvious she had the financial means or knew it was available before she resigned to fight her adversaries and remain Governor .

Looking at history the abuse Abraham Lincoln and his wife Mary took ending in his assassination makes her reasons for resigning look like a joke. Even Nixon only abandoned elective office when it was clear he would be impeached.

However if anyone developed these hardball tactics it was Lee Atwater and his acolyte Karl Rove. Rove’s modus operandi was not just to file civil suits but with the aid of Alberto Gonzales and others to file criminal suits not just against the losing candidates perceived as a threat but also their supporters and donors.

Many people who supported the Democrats ended up defending themselves on frivolous  alleged felony  violations of the political campaign laws or other federal violations  pPreviously treated as misdemeanors.

These prosecutions were brought not by the RNC or some private organization but by the U.S. Attorney General’s office . Many were jailed for political reasons and lost there livelihoods because of these tactics.)

Before she resigned to “protect” her family she says Bristol was attacked for trying to become a spokes person against teen pregnancy by advocating abstinence. The message in the book was that Bristol was using some type of contraception and it failed or the teenagers didn’t use it correctly and she became pregnant. Therefore the only safe practice is abstinence.
Also Trig’s picture was photo shopped to make him look like a monster and posted on the web. Even Track her son serving in Iraq was aware of the media attacks on the family and concerned enough to call her about it. She says his advice was to hang on.

She alleges the reason for her resignation was lack of finances (apparently not true) and to protect her family from the media. (However she has always inserted her family into her politics. They appeared at campaign rallies and press conferences with her and she campaigned on the fact she was a mother with five kids and one  was a special needs child. Many pages in this book celebrate her motherhood with anecdotes about her children. She’s always put them out front as a political strategy. Hillary by contrast kept Chelsea mainly out of the spotlight even though she was an adult.  Her whole political life has been dominated by the conservative mantra which she mouths at every opportunity and the mommy hood ploy.)

The inescapable conclusion is  she deserted the people of Alaska who voted for her to be Governor  when it became  convenient for her.


Sarah Palin In A Nutshell: Going Rogue: Book Review: Election Day Denouement: Post Election Travails.

May 23, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
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Passing From A Political Person of Interest Into A Right Wing Political And Media Celebrity

The Concession.

After casting her vote in Alaska she flew to Phoenix with her family to await the election results. Many of her friends and extended family flew into Phoenix to be present at the announcement of victory or the concession speeches. Approximately a week prior to election day the campaign had her meet with Mathew Scully and Lindsay Hayes, two speech writers, to prepare speeches to be given on election night one for a victory or one for a concession. Therefore she expected to be speaking on election night on a nationwide hook up no matter what the results.

The GOP polls forecasted a defeat and to that end she focused on a concession speech. One that extolled the virtues of John McCain and also to thank the American people for the honor of participating in a Presidential Election. She was also planning to say something in appreciation of the Bush-Cheney Administration efforts. (This is probably why they didn’t let her speak as the Bush-Cheney Administration was blamed for the economic collapse as well as our difficulties in Iraq which didn’t help their GOP candidacy and  one of the main tactics of the McCain campaign was to distance itself  from Bush and Cheney.)

On election day they all met at the Phoenix Biltmore Resort Hotel. There she was told by Steve Schmidt she would not be giving a speech as it has never been done before when a candidate was defeated and that he didn’t know why she prepared a speech in the first place. In the book she points out that John Edwards gave one when the Democrats lost in 2004 and he had been the Vice Presidential candidate.  She says Matthew Scully had previously told aides to Steve Schmidt that he was working on election night speeches for Sarah.  She met with McCain and told him she wanted to speak and thank him for choosing her to run with him.  He thanked her and said Steve Schmidt had it covered.  (Apparently Schmidt was taking no chances on Sarah at this emotional moment. A woman he perceived as a loose cannon.)

Then without any warning she was told to get ready to appear and that her husband and children would not appear with her. Todd went anyway. So she had to shoo Piper and her cousins away. McCain gave a brief concession speech and she hugged him and then it was over.
Some of her aides went to the post election farewell parties where they learned that  main campaign staffers, when it became apparent they were going to lose, had gone around to the reporters feeding them negative stories about her and her family for after election publication.

The next day Mark and Nicole Wallace came by to say goodbye, how much they loved working with her and that they loved her. (This can only interpreted as sarcasm based on prior statements in the book.)
The Wallace’s also told her that it was going to get really nasty because of the coming negative stories in the media. She wondered how the Wallace’s would know that in advance. (The inference was that the Wallace’s had participated in the dissemination of the stories in question.)

She flew back to Alaska on the day after the election and the fall out was immediate. She was still Governor and scores of Freedom Of Information Act requests were filed along with lawsuits related to alleged ethics violations requiring her and her staff to spend thousands of hours answering and defending them. This effectively prevented her from carrying out the normal duties of Governor. Most of the requests and lawsuits were from liberals or leftist out to destroy her.

Anonymous McCain aides were leaking shocking character assassinations about her to the press. So she not only was attacked from the left but by former campaign staff as well. Stories were told that the RNC lawyers had to fly to Alaska to reclaim the stolen fancy campaign clothes. Todd had Fed-Exed thirty boxes of clothes back to the RNC. (Earlier the book suggests she got rid of the wardrobe right away when the news broke but apparently not. Maybe she just set them aside.)

The national media pundits continued to speculate on her role in the campaign and as to her new future and national ambitions. This was the new normal for her and her family. She experienced the tabloidization of herself and her family. They had become tabloid celebrity fodder. There was even speculation that she and Todd were divorcing which were untrue.

Then the bloggers weighed in with accusations made up out of thin air such as Trig was not her baby or they were going to release porn pictures of her, which never materialized?

She became aware that she and her family were now grist for all types of media speculation. Even the main stream media which was supposed to be objective lost its objectivity reporting unfounded stories based on internet blogger rumors and speculation.

Her Judicial appointments were criticized by well meaning people that didn’t realize that the Alaska Judicial Council made the initial selection and presented her with a panel. Thus many times her choice was really a Hobson’s choice of the best of bad options.

Then David Letterman made an unnecessary off color joke about fourteen year old Willow and Alex Rodriguez. She was criticized as being unable to take a joke, but in this case it was about her daughter and was mean intentioned and she decided not to let it pass without criticizing Letterman for his callousness. It seemed that the media and near media were baiting her for a response so they would have news to report as she was now a newsworthy person.

She was disturbed by the Obama Administrations policies which she thought were a departure from the free market capitalism which had made this country great. This was true of the stimulus package in particular. In order to qualify for the benefits to the stimulus a state had to impose many new regulations on its citizens and it also increased the states regulatory bureaucracy to enforce the regulations. One was uniform building controls for Alaskans’ who had never had to deal with them before. ( I guess she doesn’t know Alaska is a welfare state getting five dollars for every one dollar paid to the Federal Government in taxes plus a 25% extraction fee on the value of Alaskan oil produced, passed into law by her, which would be passed on by the oil companies to oil users in the lower forty eight. So why wouldn’t the Federal government require conditions to make sure the money was spent properly? )

Thus  she passed from a  political person of interest into a right wing political  and media celebrity. (One can only wonder why the conservative public has this thirst for media personages like  Palin, Limbaugh, Beck, Hannity, O’Reilly, Coulter and others and what it means for the future of politics  when people with the slimmest of qualifications rise to be political media celebrities mouthing a no nothing  simplistic mantra. It seems the more you dumb things down the more appealing they are.  Like the invisible hand of self interest will always regulate the markets in an orderly manner.)


Sarah Plain In A Nut Shell: Going Rogue: Book Review: Campaign: Final Days: Accusations Of Treachery And Recriminations.

May 16, 2010 by · 1 Comment
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Tempest In A Tea Pot
After the “Joe The Plummer Tour” the wardrobe controversy broke on October 22 2008, the headline read, “RNC Shells Out 150k For Palins Fashion.” Palin says the headline was misleading. First: she never asked the “New York stylists” to purchase the wardrobe, many of the items were never worn and many of the items were intended for other people than herself. She and her family  never went on  shopping trips to buy the items in question and in the end the items were returned. She contends that she was characterized as a “Diva” and her family was made to feel like a bunch of hillbillies who didn’t know how to dress. (The allusion to the New York stylist is probably to Nicolle Wallace and her staff who once worked for Katie Couric,  Palin’s perceived nemesis along with the Wallaces and Steve Schmidt in this book.)

(The sources are not mentioned but one wonders how the press got the information about the wardrobe. Maybe the pirate ship had leaks. It certainly detracted from her image as the middleclass hockey mom struggling to bring up a family.)

End Days: Accusations Of Treachery and Recriminations.
When she did one of the interviews with Couric she wore a pink Dolce and Gabbana jacket she bought at a consignment store in Alaska. She told a crowd in Florida that “those clothes were never mine just like the lighting and staging they were bought by the RNC. I’m… now… wearing the clothes I bought from my favorite consignment shop in anchorage. She had told the truth but the campaign leaders admonished her again for going off script again.

By then she says the campaign was in free fall , their numbers were declining and the gears of the campaign machinery were not meshing. There was internal dissention and one side was blaming the other for events gone wrong. She and her staff wanted to” take the gloves off” and tell the people some facts about the Obama side they need to now. However the campaign leaders decided otherwise nor would it hold the press accountable for biased reporting.

However there were internal leaks to the press that she was a diva, a terrible pick and she constantly went off script. Randy Scheunemann confronted Steve Schmidt about the souces of these criticisms and asked if they were Nicolle and Mark Wallace. Schmidt say no.

It appeared to her that the leaders of the campaign saw they were going to lose and were criticizing the B Team (her campaign team). Schmidt told Randy they were “screwing” up, the Governor wasn’t doing serious “homework” and she might be suffering from” post partum depression.” Randy told Schmidt that was not the case.

It seem to her in the final days of the campaign when everyone should have been working hard they were gathering a stock of half truths and innuendoes to destroy her reputation . Politico the internet site had already ran a story implying this saying Schmidt planned to destroy her reputation in order to save his own.

CNN’s Dana Bush wrote an article saying that the campaign was accusing Palin of going rogue and trying to bust free of what she perceived as a damaging and mismanaged campaign. McCain sources said they wondered if her acts were deliberate when she labeled robo ( telephone) calls to prospective voters irritating and telling reporters that she disagreed with the campaigns decision to pull out of Michigan.

Palin felt that she was being thrown under the media bus by the campaign leaders leaking false accusations to the press to protect themselves against blame for losing the campaign which they perceived as already lost. It dumbfounded her that that campaign was preoccupied with these leaks and petty bickering instead of finishing strong.
Later when the Randy -Schmidt confrontation was made known Schmidt contradicted Randy’s version.

(It’s kind of obvious at this point that Palin believes Mark and Nicolle Wallace were the source of the leaks with Schmidt’s approval and perhaps Schmidt was a direct source of some of the leaked criticism.)

She wanted to give three major policy speeches on Energy, Special Needs Children and Woman’s issues and she wanted to write and edit them herself intertwining  her own experiences, as a woman, governor of an oil producing state, and a mother. The campaign scheduled the first speech on Special Needs Children in a forty seat hotel ball room. The B team got it rescheduled to Pittsburgh with a large turnout. She wasn’t allowed to write her own speech but she did rework a special needs expert’s speech adding her own experiences. Later she gave speeches on Energy and Woman issues despite the main campaigns lack of help and promotion. She was surprised the main campaign failed to focus on these areas of her expertise earlier because when she gave the speeches they were received with enthusiasm by large crowds.

The next faux pas on her and her staff’s part was in accepting a prank call from two Montreal disc jockeys pretending to be Nicolas Sarkozy. She believed the call to be real and answered many questions naïvely and made many unsophisticated comments. Steve Schmidt and the campaign leaders went berserk. She blames the mishap on unnamed staff members who set the call up and put it through. She also notes many other prominent people had been tricked by these pranksters in the past including Sarkozy himself.

On November 3, she made as many campaign stops as possible in Ohio, Missouri, Iowa, Colorado and Nevada before flying home to Alaska to cast her vote on election day,  November 4, and then flying to Phoenix for either to celebrate a win or make a concession speech . She would follow God’s plan for her no matter that the GOP polls were predicting a defeat.


Sarah Palin In A Nut Shell: Going Rogue: Book Review: Campaigning After The Debate. Grasping At Straws On The Down Hill Slide.

May 9, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
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From Wearing  An Expensive Wardrobe: Trying to Bond With The Lower Middle That Joe The Plumber Was Supposed To Represent: The Campaign Was Never Well Thought Out And Never Focused: Stumbling From One Failed Strategy To Another.

The staff decorated the Jet Blue campaign jet with stickers and posters given to them by well wishers on the rope lines. The Jet Blue pilots even had a pair of moose antlers in the cockpit. They had a map displayed for visitors to the plane to sign.  Thus the campaign was on the road after the Biden Debate.
The staff noticed that the Democrats received extra, positive, media coverage whenever a “liberal” celebrity attended their events.  So it was decided the campaign would accept the offers of “common sense” celebrity supporters  to attend their rallies and events and  to that end  Robert Duval and his wife, Jon Voight, and Janine Turner helped by appearing . Gretchen Wilson even rode along in the campaign plane.
Other “patriots” joined them on the campaign trail including Hank Williams Jr., John Rich, Naomi Judd and Lee Greenwood. (Naomi Judd is the actress characterized as a pretty, perky, celebrity recruited to oppose Alaska’s scientifically managed wolf control program. It seems like Judd went from an airhead actress to a common sense patriot in a matter of a few chapters.)
Along the way they picked up support from other common sense, patriotic celebrities like Mike Ditka, Brady Quinn, Aaron Tippin and the Bellamy brothers.

(While these “celebrities” are known, some nationally some regionally, they are certainly not from the A list and maybe not even from the B list so of what value to her campaign, if any, they  were is debatable.)

The Orange County Choppers appeared at a Media, Pennsylvania rally “tattooed up and looking good” on their motorcycles. (Looking good to whom and of what value oneI wonders?One also wonders how much campaign money was spent to get them there.)
She says she shared insights and ideas with Bono and John did  also with Warren Beatty while on the campaign trail. (This sounds like a fantasy no wonder they lost if they were dreaming they were sharing insights and ideas with Bono and Beatty.)
Reverend Rick Warren called so she could pray with him telephonically for the strength of the campaign while she was in the shower.  “You do what you gotta do,” she says.
Aside from the celebrities there were many ordinary people who   offered good wishes and inspiration during the campaign and the campaign decided to focus on these regular people. (Duh.)
One of them was Joe the Plumber real name Joe Wurzelbacher from Ohio who caught on with the media when he spoke with Obama about taxes that he might have to pay on a business he intended to buy in the future. (Joe, who was delinquent in paying taxes at the time he spoke to Obama never had the resources to buy the business then or later and now seems to be trying to establish himself as a celebrity speaker at political and other conservative events.) This is the “ordinary “people  the campaign focused on with the emphasis that the Obama tax plan would hurt the small business man and even working men and woman .

Another was Tito Munoz  who wore a yellow hard hat, a reflective vest with construction worker written on the back and who owned a small construction company.  (Sounds like he was sent out from central casting.  His obvious ploy never caught on with the media like Joe the Plumber did. I guess the reporters are not as dumb as she says they are.)

Their Joe The Plumber Tour played out all across America with people coming out with signs like Nguyen the grocer, Theresa the teacher, Tom the real estate agent, Greg the teleprompter guy and Wendy the waitress
She complains while the media ignored Tito Munoz and his ilk except for Joe they also failed to focus on the fact  that Obama had a long association with Bill Ayers a Chicago activist and a former member or the Weather Underground or  Pastor Jeremiah “God Damn America” Wright.  (This is not correct Obama spoke on National   television and admitted that he knew these people but did not share their beliefs and in the end disassociated himself from Pastor Wright. Thus defusing these associations as issues.)
For years she had been told she looked like Tina Fey of Saturday Night Live. This resemblance was also recognized by SNL and Tina Fey did an air head impersonation of Palin that became an overnight sensation and probably made her a movie star.  The campaign decided to try and neutralize the effect of Fey’s impersonation by accepting an offer to appear on SNL whose members were perceived as liberal Obama supporters. She met Fey and Alec Baldwin and the meeting was cordial. However Oliver Stone also made an appearance on the show and she “did not shake his hand.”  She did chide Alec about his brother Stephen who was a McCain –Palin supporter.  In a skit where Baldwin thinks she is Fey he says to Lorne Michaels, “God Lord Lorne you cannot  let Tina go out there with that woman.  What’s that name they call her Cari…Cari.  What’s that naming Tina?”
Palin answers,”That’d be Caribou Barbie.”
Then Lorne introduces Sarah to Baldwin as Governor Palin…
Then she announces the famous opening, “Live From New York, it’s Saturday Night. “
This campaign was always grasping at straws that in the end did not work out. First McCain anointed Palin as a running mate; she could draw a crowd but not the Middle America they needed to win. They tried celebrities, then they focused on Joe The Plumber and his many imitators for middle class color and domestic tax issues, then they went on SNL, a show that had ridiculed Palin and was obviously pro Obama.  All this was in vain because the election deciders, the independents and moderate voters were not persuaded they had more to offer than the Obama Biden ticket.

Sarah Palin In A Nutshell: Going Rogue: Book Review: The First Debate With Joe Biden.Mark and Nicolle Wallace Are Blamed For Sabotaging Her Campaign.

May 2, 2010 by · Leave a Comment
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Nicolle Wallace and Sarah Palin. Peas In A Pod? Never.

She prepared intensively for her first debate with Senator Joe Biden to be held in St. Louis. After a campaign stop in Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love, they holed up in a hotel in that city for preparation for her debate with Biden. She notes she “loves” the people of Philadelphia however there were many hateful demonstrators on the route to the hotel. Some were wearing t-shirts with foul epithets about her that were seen by her children.

Mark Wallace led the preparation team in Philadelphia and she says he was mysteriously guided by “Campaign Headquarters” out of Washington. Who comprised headquarters was unknown to her.

She really doesn’t like the Wallace’s, Mark and Nicolle. She says she was sequestered in a hotel, the curtains drawn tight, with a debate prep team led by Wallace. She was in a hostile city with protesters on the streets and she was blocked from fresh air, sunshine, running, her preferred exercise and a prep team she had no confidence in. It appears that the initial prep team had little confidence in her.

She criticizes the prep team for giving her flash cards with questions on one side and suggested answers on the other side. The answers did not seem to relate to the questions. She asked about this but was told you don’t have to answer the question with an exact or even a responsive answer. (The inference here is that the team led by Mark Wallace thought she was incapable of debating the experienced Biden, particularly on foreign policy, his area of expertise in the Senate.)

Then the news came that PBS’s Gwen Ifill had been chosen to be moderator. She was a former N.Y Times reporter and perceived to be an Obama supporter. Steve Schmidt was convinced Ifill would not be impartial. (It turned out that she was impartial.)

Finally Joe Lieberman came and offered his counsel which she agreed with. He told her “Don’t let these people try to change you. Don’t let them tell you what to say or think.”

The situation in Philadelphia deteriorated to the point that the debate team wanted to fly in a nutritionist to improve her diet and thus improve her mentation because they felt she was on the Atkin’s Diet. This idea arose because she ate Atkin’s bars for snacks. However she said the problem was she couldn’t do her daily run and the ineptitude of the prep team. (Possibly they were trying to dumb things down for her and she was insulted by this tactic.)

Finally Cindy McCain invited the debate prep team to her ranch in Arizona. The fresh air, her ability to run with no hostile protesters as in Philadelphia along with a new “ace” debate prep leader, Randy Scheunemann, turned the situation around. Scheunemann a spent a lot of time on foreign policy and national security issues, Biden’s perceived strengths.

She points out that Biden had voted against The Trans- Alaska Pipeline which turned out, in her estimation, as an overwhelming success. (This is true if you exclude the Exxon Valdez oil spill in Prince William Sound as a part of the pipeline.) The points she wanted to make were that the McCain-Palin ticket was for free market principles to get the economy going again and not government bailouts or government growth and more regulation. She also wanted to focus on military strength and support for our Allies, particularly Israel.

She had two full scale debate preps with a moderator and Randy taking the Biden part. Her preparation went well in the fresh air and warm sun of Arizona. Randy Schneunemann is extolled as the man that got her ready for the debate. A crucial point in the campaign.

Randy counseled her to ask Joe Biden if she could call him Joe because she frequently misspoke his name by saying O’Biden during the prep meetings. This was supposed to take place off camera but it happened on camera by accident she wants us to believe.

The debate took place at Washington University in St. Louis. Gwen Ifill conducted it from a wheel chair as she had broken her ankle the day before.

The debate went smoothly from the campaign’s point of view. (The polls gave a slight edge to Biden.) However it was not the disaster some had predicted and she had negotiated that hurdle and maintained her credibility as a vice presidential candidate.

The following morning she learned through a reporter that the campaign had pulled out of Michigan. She answered she ” wished we weren’t pulling out of Michigan and that every vote mattered and that she first learned about it in a newspaper article” not from the campaign staff. This gave the impression the right hand didn’t know what the left hand was doing campaign wise and also gave rise to the charge she was off script or “going rogue.” Nicolle began calling her tour bus the “pirate ship.” This is also an inference the Wallace’s didn’t keep her informed and then enhanced the going “off script” charge by calling the tour bus a pirate ship or rogue element . Thus creating another sore point between herself, her handlers and Steve Schmidt the captain of the ship.