Palin Moves Past “Joke” Territory, Heads Toward “Cliche”

There’s a couple Sarah Palin stories that I want to get out of the way, much like history will do with her candidacy.

First I’ll mention how the McCain /Palin Campaign pre-emptively cleared Palin from wrongdoing (much like Bush pre-emptively invaded Iraq).   Then I’m going to mention the actual Branchflower Report, which found she had abused her power in an unethical manner [available here in PDF form].

After that I’ll talk about her reality-denying interview regarding the Alaskan probe.  Then I’ll point out who she really blames for the problem.  Finally I’ll point out how her recent, insane rhetoric has backfired, how her tone has allegedly changed, and how it’s still a joke.

First: The McCain / Palin Campaign clears themselves of any wrongdoing.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska [Thursday] October 9, 2008 (AP)

Trying to head off a potentially embarrassing state ethics report on GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin, campaign officials released their own report Thursday that clears her of any wrongdoing.

Lawmakers are expected to release their own findings Friday. Campaign officials have yet to see that report — the result of an investigation that began before she was tapped as McCain’s running mate — but said the investigation has falsely portrayed a legitimate policy dispute between a governor and her commissioner as something inappropriate.

“The following document will prove Walt Monegan’s dismissal was a result of his insubordination and budgetary clashes with Governor Palin and her administration,” campaign officials wrote. “Trooper Wooten is a separate issue.”

“I just hope that the truth is figured out,” Monegan told The Associated Press on Thursday. “That the governor did want me to fire him, and I chose to not. You just can’t walk up to someone and say, ‘I fire you.’ He didn’t do anything under my watch to result in termination.”

[full story]

Nice move.  Very Bush-like.  Hmm, how’d that work out for us?

Well, let’s see what the ACTUAL report says.  This one is easily illustrated with th e picture below , and this soundbyte.

Palin Probe Reveals Ethical Lapses

Palin Probe Reveals Ethical Lapses

 Here’s the relevant parts of the interview… I’ll go ahead and put the obvious bullshit in italics.

[Opening Statement]

Palin: OK cool.

Well, I’m very very pleased to be cleared of any legal wrongdoing … any hint of any kind of unethical activity there. Very pleased to be cleared of any of that.

[Todd] did what any – I think — any rational person would do so again, nothing to apologize there with Todd’s actions and again very pleased to be cleared of any legal wrongdoing.

[First Question]

ADN: Governor, finding No.1 on the report was that you abused your power by violating state law. Do you think you did anything wrong at all in this Troopergate case?

Palin: Not at all and I’ll tell you…

So no, not having done anything wrong, and again very much appreciating being cleared of any legal wrongdoing or unethical activity at all.

[Second Question]

ADN: Have you read the whole report? (No response; Stapleton [Palin’s Aide] invites question from KTVA reporter).

KTVA-Channel 11: … The report that came out yesterday, do you think that the end result is partisan?

 Yes, you read that right.  They cut off the reporter who was asking the simple follow-up…”Did you read the report?”  The reporter asked this because Palin stated something that was completely the opposite of what the report just said, much like their pre-emptive report did.   She then contines to do so, after blaming everyone else for her ethical lapse.

She did single out one person, above all else, to blame for this mess….here’s the focused version…from a comment on Fark…

whizbang Quote 2008-10-12 08:45:28 PM  
Well, it’s certainly consistent with their First-Dude-Takes-the-Heat defense strategy:

Todd did what anyone would have done given this state trooper’s very, very troubling behavior and his dangerous threats against our family.

Todd did what I think any Alaskan would do. And he,

Todd did what the state’s Department of Law Web site tells anyone to do if they have a concern about a state trooper. And that’s you go to the commissioner and you express your concern. And

Todd did what our personal detail asked him to do. Bob Cockrell early on as I was elected and was asked are there any threats against you, and

Todd brought the concern as I did to Commissioner Monegan about the state trooper’s threats.

He did what any – I think — any rational person would do so again, nothing to apologize there with

Todd’s actions and again very pleased to be cleared of any legal wrongdoing.

 Note also that thinking it is “rational” and normal for someone to use the Governor’s office to call directly and talk to a commissioner directly about their ex-brother-in-law is completely insane.  The access that Sarah gave Todd makes it plenty evident that she drew no boundaries regarding his access to her personnel and her authority as Governor.  It is idiotic to try and argue that it was without her knowledge and not part of her agenda.  But that’s their argument.

To go and get caught red-handed and then throw your own husband under the bus…all the while denying you did anything wrong?

C’mon, Plain [sp], give us a break.  No wonder you got booed.

 —

So that’s one example of how detached this person is.    Let’s look at one more example to put this argument to bed. 

Sarah begins…

[quotes taken from this article]

“It’s not negative and it’s not mean-spirited in a campaign for me to ask you to check out our opponent’s record, and I would ask you to check out our opponent’s record ….”

And you know she’s going for the Ayer’s thing, right?  Like she did last week, right?  LIke how she said Obama was hanging around with terrorists?  You folks remember this, right?  Because that’s not what happend at all…

“…check out our opponent’s record on a couple of the legislative opportunities that Barack Obama has had to reflect his feelings on the same issue that I just talked about,” Palin said. “I’m not being negative, not mean-spirited, but please check out his record on partial birth abortion and on the Child Born-Alive Act, and I’ll let you judge for yourself.” 

Oooh, good one.  Going for the “Obama is a Baby Killer” argument.  Nah, that’s not negative or mean-spirited.

And neither is this…

“All across America, I know that there’s a lot of anger right now,” Palin said.

Right, right, I know, people are pissed the “Arab” terrorist might win the election, right?

What? No? Then what is it?

“There’s anger about the insider dealing of lobbyists and anger at the greed of Wall Street, and anger about the arrogance of the Washington elite. And with serious reforms to change Washington, John McCain is going to turn your anger into action.”

Aaah, I see.  People are mad the “Washington elite”.  You know.   People born and bred in Washington. The sons of Admirals and Vice Presidents.   Ya know…those elites…Republican presidential candidates.

She goes to talk about the good guys and bad guys.

“Help me Ohio to help put John McCain in the White House,” Palin said. “He understands… For one thing, we know who the bad guys are, OK? We know, we know that in the war, it’s terrorists, terrorists who hate America and her allies and would seek to destroy us, and the bad guys are those who would support and sympathize with the terrorists. They do not like America because of what we stand for: liberty, freedom, equal rights. Those who sympathize and support those terrorists who would seek to destroy all that it is that we value, those are the bad guys, ok?”

This is toning it down?  Last week she says that Obama sympathizes and pals around with terrorists.  This week she says that the terrorist are the bad guys (along with lobbyists like a young John McCain and “Greedy Wall Street” types, i.e. jews).

Her followers know what she really means.  Obama is the Bad Guy.

I guess when you are completely ignorant of, or just flat out ignore history and facts and such.  And don’t feel the need to “look to the past” as she’s so fond of saying….you can make such ridiculous claims in public with a straight face.

When you study history and know that the term “Founding Fathers” is damn near synonymous with “Elitist Lawyers” and then look at what this country has had to go through to get to where it is, I don’t think you could.

Many of the men who started this country were out-of-the-closet INTELLECTUALS.  And LIBERAL ONES too.

I completely understand that the “liberal” and “conservative” of over 200 years ago bears little resemblance to that of today, but this culture war against knowledge and history and science needs to stop.  This thinly vieled argument that Barack Obama is a Terrorist Who Hates America really needs to stop.

This kind of politics needs to stop now.  If it doesn’t, we can make absolutely sure this kind of politics stops in a few weeks, when we get a chance to exercise the power that a bunch of rich, elitist, patriotic laywers and slave-owning intellectuals decided in their slightly-less-than-infinite wisdom to give to the common people.

Infinite wisdom is reserved for the Almighty and I think we can all agree now, as Americans, that Almighty we are not.

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Where You Can See Russia From Alaska

The island is called Little Diomede. It looks like a rock plopped into the Bering Strait. Only about 150 Alaskans live on the whole island. And just about two miles away; in full view of every single house on the island is the nation of Russia. Specifically, it is the Russian Island of Big Diomede which sits about 25 miles from the Russian Siberian mainland (which you can also see from the American island.) Most everybody on Little Diomede had relatives who lived on Big Diomede.

But decades ago, the Russian government sent them all to the mainland, and today, Big Diomede is limited to a Russian military presence. It’s also a full day in front of Little Diomede because it’s on the other side of the International Date Line. Little Diomede is fascinating. It looks like the moon would if you built a lunar settlement. It’s full of rocks, dirt, and craters. We were curious if Sarah Palin has ever visited this island. According to the natives, the answer is no.

As a matter of fact, no Alaska governor in the state’s nearly 50 year history has ever visited the remote outpost that still has little running water. We were curious what the Little Diomeders thought about Palin’s claim of foreign policy experience because of the proximity of Siberia. Interestingly, many of these Alaskans had no idea who Sarah Palin was! It turns out they have no TV on the island, and therefore, many don’t follow the news.

The island’s mayor has heard of her though. No American mayor resides in a city closer to Russia than Andrew Milligrock, and he says being two miles from Russia doesn’t give him any foreign policy expertise.

Anderson Cooper 360: Blog Archive – You CAN see Russia from here! « – Blogs from CNN.com.

This, sadly, is actually in depth reporting into the claims of one of the Vice Presidential candidates, if you can believe it.

I’ll bet someone who woke up from a two-month-long coma today couldn’t, to be honest.

This latest revelation about the technical accuracy of Sarah Palin’s claim regarding the physical reality of Russia probably won’t do much to help her polls numbers…although it might help explain them.

The Sarah Palin pick has not worn well with North Carolina voters, as her net favorability has gone from +8 to -3 in the course of three weeks, for a negative shift of 11 points.

She is particularly unpopular with independents in North Carolina. 46% of them now say her selection makes them less likely to vote for John McCain compared to just 36% who say her spot on the ticket makes them more inclined to support him. Even among Republicans enthusiasm for her has dropped from 75% to 67%.

[full post]

UPDATE: Umm, not to worry.  Sarah Palin, it turns out, reads *every* newspaper and magazine regularly in order to keep in touch with Washington, D.C. while living in Alaska.  We are also informed that Alaska is not. I repeat *not* a foreign country [watch Katie Couric roll her eyes at this one].  This is despite the fact that you need a passport to get there over land and their current governor’s husband was a member of a secessionst political party.

Anyway, on with the clip.

O.k. raise your hands…who thought that was Tina Fey in the clip making fun of Palin?

Q: re: Rape Kits :: Can You Save Money If You Buy in Bulk

The blogosphere is reporting that when she was mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, in the late 1990s, Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s municipal police department charged rape victims for the “rape kit” used to collect the forensic evidence necessary to convict their attackers. According to reports, this changed in 2000 when then Alaska Gov. Tony Knowles signed a bill protecting rape victims from being charged. As I wrote recently, however, the situation described in Wasilla is not unique. In all too many instances, women are still being stuck with the bill for rape kits. This despite the fact that in order to qualify for federal grants under the Violence Against Women Act, states are supposed to pick up the entire tab.

Sarah Palin and the Rape Kit Question – On Health and Money (usnews.com).

Knowles was the man Palin defeated BTW.

The irony here is that the “Violence Against Women Act” was, and has been, Biden’s baby.

The Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA) is a United States federal law. It was passed as Title IV, sec. 40001-40703 of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 HR 3355 and signed as Public Law 103-322 by President Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. It provided $1.6 billion to enhance investigation and prosecution of the violent crime perpetrated against women, increased pre-trial detention of the accused, provided for automatic and mandatory restitution of those convicted, and allowed civil redress in cases prosecutors chose to leave unprosecuted.

VAWA was drafted by Senator Joseph Biden‘s office with support from a number of advocacy organizations including Legal Momentum and The National Organization for Women, which heralded the bill as “the greatest breakthrough in civil rights for women in nearly two decades.”

The act was opposed by Sen. John McCain.

Just to be clear, and to on one’s surprise, Obama is for it and Palin hasn’t been told what to say yet (hey, she’s not on the record and doesn’t answer questions…how we are to know…other than by looking at her record).

BTW, they might have to buy in bulk because the per capita incidents of sexual assualt in Alaska (like drug abuse and dranking) are off the charts.

The study, conducted by the University of Alaska Anchorage’s Justice Center, looked at 989 sexual assault cases reported to state troopers in 2003 and 2004. Researchers did not look at cases reported in the same period to municipal police departments, including those in Anchorage or other urban centers that account for 80% of Alaska’s 670,000 residents.

Overall, 46% of the cases were referred for prosecution. Of those 452 cases, about half resulted in convictions.

The study is believed to represent only a fraction of abuse actually committed in trooper jurisdiction. Still, Alaska has had the nation’s highest per capita occurrence since 1995. According to statewide figures for 2003 and 2004 alone, there were 89 rapes per 100,000 people, almost three times the national average of 32 per 100,000, said Andre Rosay, the Justice Center’s interim director.

“There are a lot of excellent programs here, so it could be reporting rates are higher here. We don’t know, though,” he said. “But even if there are higher reporting rates, our rates far surpass those in the lower 48.

[full story]

If Palin ever allows those blood-sucking vultures in the press to ask her questions, can someone put this one on the list?

Paging Mrs. Palin, Mr. Medvedev, the President of Russia (which you can see from Alaska) Called You Out

Dmitry Medvedev, Russia’s president, has said Georgia’s attack in August on the pro-Russian breakaway region of South Ossetia was his country’s equivalent of the September 11 attacks on the United States in 2001.

The president made the comments at the annual meeting of the Valdai Club, a group of political analysts and Russia experts, in Moscow on Friday.

He told atendees: “Immediately after the events in the Caucasus, it occurred to me that August 8 was for us almost what 9/11 was for the United States.”

Medvedev also said that he would have sent in Russian troops regardless of how closely tied Georgia was to Nato and that he would do so again if needed.

Al Jazeera English – Europe – Russia: S Ossetia ‘was our 9/11’.

Why is this calling Palin out?  In her first interview granted to her adoring public she mentioned this situation to dislay her vast grasp of the nuances of international negotiations.

GIBSON: Let me ask you about some specific national security situations.

PALIN: Sure.

GIBSON: Let’s start, because we are near Russia, let’s start with Russia and Georgia.

The administration has said we’ve got to maintain the territorial integrity of Georgia. Do you believe the United States should try to restore Georgian sovereignty over South Ossetia and Abkhazia?

PALIN: First off, we’re going to continue good relations with Saakashvili there. I was able to speak with him the other day and giving him my commitment, as John McCain’s running mate, that we will be committed to Georgia. And we’ve got to keep an eye on Russia. For Russia to have exerted such pressure in terms of invading a smaller democratic country, unprovoked, is unacceptable and we have to keep…

GIBSON: You believe unprovoked.

PALIN: I do believe unprovoked and we have got to keep our eyes on Russia, under the leadership there. I think it was unfortunate. That manifestation that we saw with that invasion of Georgia shows us some steps backwards that Russia has recently taken away from the race toward a more democratic nation with democratic ideals.That’s why we have to keep an eye on Russia.

O.k.  In the interests of reality, I’m going to have to link a few stories here.   This is the backstory for this and it’s important to comprehend to appreciate the complete…jaw-dropping ignorance Palin displayed in the interview.

Georgian military commanders confirmed an invasion began in the early hours of Friday morning, raising fears of a serious diplomatic crisis between the country’s western allies and Moscow.

The United States swiftly called for calm, but appeared to apportion more blame on Moscow and the separatist forces it supports for taking the volatile region to the brink of war.

“We’re urging Moscow to press South Ossetia’s de facto leaders to stop firing,” a US State department official said. “We’re urging Tbilisi to maintain restraint.”

Just hours after Mikheil Saaskashvili, Georgia’s pro-western president, declared a unilateral ceasefire, his armed forces began an artillery barrage against Tskhinvali, the rebel capital.

[full article]

And I have to mention this as well…

The Bush administration is not happy with Russia’s decree. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice called Russia’s move “regrettable.”

But there is strong support for independence in the regions, including South Ossetia. And the decision to recognize them as independent came much more quickly than the South Ossetians expected.

After the Russian parliament’s decision, South Ossetians drove through the streets, waving Russian and Ossetian flags and spraying champagne to celebrate. Their goals — independence, then marriage with Russia — suddenly seemed within reach.

[full story]

So.. to summarize, an attack that Sarah Palin didn’t think happened is being treated by Russia as a terrorist attack similar to 9/11.  The civilians who were attacked by Georgia don’t want to be a part of it (hence “rebels”), and would rather join their brethren in North Ossetia, which is a part of Russia proper. 

Many considered themselves to be rescued, rather than invaded.  Part of the issue here is that there is a distinct racial difference between Georgians and Ossetians.  And their history is different.

So, to some up…Russia is basically ready to go to war after their 9/11.  Sarah Palin doesn’t even think it happened.  She’s in complete denial, or in complete ignorance.

AND THAT’S EVEN WHILE SHE, LITERALLY, KEEPS AN EYE ON RUSSIA.

PALIN: And, Charlie, you’re in Alaska. We have that very narrow maritime border between the United States, and the 49th state, Alaska, and Russia. They are our next door neighbors.We need to have a good relationship with them. They’re very, very important to us and they are our next door neighbor.

GIBSON: What insight into Russian actions, particularly in the last couple of weeks, does the proximity of the state give you?

PALIN: They’re our next door neighbors and you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska, from an island in Alaska.

GIBSON: What insight does that give you into what they’re doing in Georgia?

PALIN: Well, I’m giving you that perspective of how small our world is and how important it is that we work with our allies to keep good relation with all of these countries, especially Russia. We will not repeat a Cold War. We must have good relationship with our allies, pressuring, also, helping us to remind Russia that it’s in their benefit, also, a mutually beneficial relationship for us all to be getting along. [ed note: that’s a pass on the question, BTW]

I guess she didn’t literally “see” Georgia shelling civilians, so it didn’t happen.  This is unfortunate, as you can’t see 99.99999% of Russia from Alaska.

I don’t think we are going to keep good relations with Russia if our Vice-President denies their “9/11” ever happened.  How will that work?

And with statements like…

GIBSON: Under the NATO treaty, wouldn’t we then have to go to war if Russia went into Georgia?

PALIN: Perhaps so. That is the agreement. When you are a NATO ally, is, if another country is attacked, you are going to be expected to be called upon and help.

…you have to be scared.  Too be so..dismissive..about the prospect of nuclear war, after displaying complete ignorance of the perspective of the adversary, and the situation…

…and then you think about who is educating Palin on these issues…(hint: he’s currently being paid by Georgia for “security consulting” and is a card-carrying Neocon).

Randall J Scheunemann is an American lobbyist. He is the President of the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq, which was created by the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), of which he is a board member. He was Trent Lott‘s National Security Aide and was an advisor to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Iraq. He is a paid lobbyist for the country of Georgia and is 2008 Presidential candidate John McCain‘s foreign-policy aide. He lives in Fairfax Station, Virginia.

This is who is teaching Palin about the world.   No wonder she missed an entire side of the argument and is ready to start a war at the drop of hat.

NOTE: Because of the general fucked-upedness of the Georgian situation and my general unfamiliarity with the region, I don’t think this situation is as black and white as it has been presented in the U.S. media.  Just reading through these few articles probably made your head spin a bit (it did mine), but to assert so strongly that an event the PRESIDENT OF RUSSIA called their 9/11 didn’t happen…this isn’t someone I want anywhere near a negotiating table.

“You can actually see Russia from Alaska” – Sarah Palin on her “international experience”

Can we all laugh at the joke now?

Please?

Note: I’m planning on tearing her interview to pieces. From the excerpts I’ve seen so far…this is someone who is repeating things she just learned, a week ago. No question about it.

UPDATE: You can see part of the filleting here.

Hopefully I’ll have a chance to point out some of the larger…contradictions…that Palin brought up in the interview (like how her ex-brother-in-law wanted to kill her dad….but she didn’t pressure anyone to fire him….and how that list of banned books was like, so totally bogus [strawman covered here]…but she didn’t address the fact that she asked how to ban books and then fired the woman who told her that there wasn’t a process to ban books……and how the “change” she wants to bring to Washington is mostly about other women’s wombs and going against people like her who made massive earmarks requests.   It’d be funnier if more people were in on the joke.  Hopefully a few more people will get it, this week.

Like this guy did…

Jimmy Kimmel put together a frinkin’ hilarious trailer for that movie Damon mentioned.  It doesn’t seem to be online yet…maybe tomorrow…

UPDATE: Just an FYI, this is her EXACT quote from the interview…

GIBSON: What insight into Russian actions, particularly in the last couple of weeks, does the proximity of the state give you?

PALIN: They’re our next door neighbors and you can actually see Russia from land here in Alaska, from an island in Alaska.

Note how he wasn’t asking if you could see Russia, but what kind of “insight” such an ability provides to a national leader.  Perhaps she misheard and thought he asked if Russia was “in sight”.  Which, as the first couple comments point out, it is.

UPDATE: I found the Kimmel movie…Alaska Hockey Mom

Pawlenty Confirms It, Palin is a believer in Intelligent Design

I mentioned this in the post over here. I wasn’t sure if there was going to be much traction on that, but it turns out to be correct. Palin wants science classes to teach religious theory. Debunked religious theory. Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty just confirmed this on Meet The Press.

Awesome. You know, I was just thinking the other day how great it has been having an anti-science nutjob in the Whitehouse and I was asking myself we could do to extend that streak. Looks like there in an answer.

After my initial reaction to the nomination of Sarah Palin and after getting over my surprise, I’ve come to the conclusion that this is some joke on the part of John McCain and he is going to announce his real running mate during the RNC convention.

So far I’ve seen McCain, his top aide, and another in the campaign get asked point blank about Palin’s complete and utter lack of domestic or international policy experience. All three dodged the question.

All three supporters dodged the basic question about what, if any, experience she has tackling national or international issues. Well, now we know about one. She wants to teach your children her version of creation. Science be damned

For some reason no one asked about Alaskan issues, which I’m assuming she has some experience in. Not that it matters now, but there ya go.

——–

UPDATE 9/1/8: This post seems to be getting the most attention right now. Palin has set the internet a buzz this weekend. I’ve done a bunch of stuff on the nomination. Here’s some links.

The original nomination.

A bit of education.

A bit about Alaskan politics, and Palin’s abuse of executive power (i.e experience).

Palin on climate change.

More general commentary from Alaskan papers and others.

Palin’s executive broadcasting experience and McCain’s funny joke.

Another theory why McCain tapped Palin (or wants to).

and finally, the topper…

Palin against birth control and has pregnant teenage daughter to prove it.

That’s about it for now. I think I’m about Palin’ed out.

I have to say now…at this point in my analysis…I’m thinking the best is seven days, plus or minus 3 before she pulls a Tom Eagleton and Obama coasts to victory (barring something even weirder happening).

That Maverick Reformer from Alaska

I was just doing a bit of reading about John “Yes, I’m that crazy” McCain’s pick for his running mate, Sarah Palin. (that is Newsweeks’ interview, here’s my previous coverage).

I was reading a bit about her fighting corruption and crime when she came into office, which is no doubt something many will claim to be a strength for her in the campaign.

Then I started to think a bit about Alaska, the type of people there, the type of government there, and a bit of the history of the place.

My general understanding is that Alaska is something of a strange place with a strange economy.  With 1.1 people per square kilometer, it makes sense why.  Wyoming is relatively bustling with just over 5 per sq/km.  As a natural result of their low population (0.5% of U.S.) and huge natural resource reserves (+20%), they are swimming in cash, land, and privacy.   Pretty much the opposite of the rest of the United States.  As a “freak state” (like Hawaii) you have to have a valid U.S. passport to get there over land (thanks, Patriot Act!).

In such an environment the government functions more as a distributor of that natural wealth (which has quintupled in the last 6 years) rather than trying to make do with generated wealth.  This can be a very  corrupting environment, as we have seen in many oil-based economy driven governments.  We can see that corrupting influence in action by taking a historical look at that maverick reformer from Alaska.

Stevens soon gained a reputation as an active prosecutor who vigorously prosecuted violations of federal and territorial liquor, drug, and prostitution laws,[9] characterized by Fairbanks area homesteader Niilo Koponen (who later served in the Alaska State House of Representatives from 1982-1991) as “this rough tough shorty of a district attorney who was going to crush crime.”[15] Stevens sometimes accompanied U.S. Marshals on raids. As recounted years later by Justice Jay Rabinowitz, “U.S. marshals went in with Tommy guns and Ted led the charge, smoking a stogie and with six guns on his hips.”[9] However, Stevens himself has said the colorful stories spread about him as a pistol-packing D.A. were greatly exaggerated, and recalled only one incident when he carried a gun: on a vice raid to the town of Big Delta about 75 miles (121 km) southeast of Fairbanks, he carried a holstered gun on a marshal’s suggestion.

Yup, another gun-toting Alaskan, bringing law and order to the frontier.   Who then became fat and happy and corrupt in an environment where the biggest debate is how big the checks are going to be from from the government.

So what does this say about Palin?  Not much, other than that she is following the pattern.

What does this say about the pattern? That, I think, is the point.

Now someone could make the argument that Palin hasn’t been in Alaskan politics long enough to become corrupted by the twisted relationship relative to most government/governed setups.  But we’ve already seen some evidence that she is willing to use her power to settle personal scores.

In 2005, Ms. Palin alleged to Mr. Wooten’s supervisors that he had threatened to harm her sister and father and had engaged in numerous instances of misconduct, including using a stun gun on his 10-year-old stepson, according to state documents.

In one instance, she told state investigators, she overheard him on the telephone threatening her sister: “I’m gonna f-kin” shoot your dad. He’s gonna get a lead bullet.”

Mr. Wooten told investigators he tested a Taser stun gun on the boy at his request but never threatened the Palins. An internal police investigation substantiated the stun-gun incident and some other charges but threw out most of the rest. Mr. Wooten was suspended for five days in 2006.

Through a spokesman with the Public Safety Employees Association, he declined to comment.

On July 11 of this year, Ms. Palin fired Department of Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan. Mr. Monegan then complained that she and her husband had pressured him to fire Mr. Wooten.

Ms. Palin, in a statement, denied that, saying she had removed the commissioner she had appointed 18 months earlier because she wanted “a new direction.”

She said she will cooperate with the legislative probe, which is expected to be completed by November.

My guess is that the “probe” will complete sometime around November 6th or 7th.  It’s an old school tactic, delay until after the election.

Given that in a year-and-a-half-of-executive-experience she has already shown some sides of abusing her power, is that really what the U.S. needs right now?