Sunday, August 31, 2008

Oh Boy

OK - the Palin baby speculation is inescapable at this point. The left-leaning Daily Kos posted an item Friday called "Palin faked "pregnancy"? Covering for teen daughter?"

It's a version of a rumor - long simmering in Alaska -- that Palin's daughter Bristol was pregnant and the governor somehow covered it up by pretending to have the baby (Trig) herself.

Here's a story we wrote soon after the birth. At that point, the questions were all about whether Palin should have flown back to Alaska to give birth. In the story, Palin's doctor talks about the labor and addresses questions raised at the time about Palin's decision to board a jet and fly to Alaska from Texas when she showed signs of early labor.

"The stage of her pregnancy was not apparent by observation," said an Alaska Airlines spokeswoman. The doctor, Cathy Baldwin-Johnson, said she induced labor once Palin was at the hospital.

What's the McCain campaign say? Nothing so far. They've been called and e-mailed for an on-the-record response, but haven't heard back.

What's Palin's in-state spokesman, Bill McAllister say?

That it's not true. "The answer to that is no," he said.

"But beyond that, I don't know, why should we even have to say anything," he said.

McAllister was an Anchorage TV reporter before working for Palin. He said Palin once approached him - before people knew she was pregnant - assuming he'd been hearing rumors.

"She said it's not true about Bristol," McAllister said.

At the time, the rumor would have been that Palin's daughter was pregnant.

How does McAllister know it's not true?

Meantime, this is all a plotline straight out of a recent season of Desperate Housewives.

Picture from March 14

(The day of birth was April 18.)

Here is a picture from March 14:

The Same Picture is Available Here:

Sarah Palin does not look remotely pregnant.

Read What Alaskans are Saying

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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Sarah's Weaknesses and Threats


Many of Palin's claims to fame that she has trumpeted over the last few years that we have already begun to hear parroted on the national media have been over blown and her lack of experience has already become target number one for Democrats.

These weaknesses will be exposed by Democrats, who, flush with cash this election cycle will have ample resources to do opposition research on Palin's real record.

A reformer? While Palin was out spoken against the likes of Randy Ruedrich, Greg Renkes and Frank Murkowksi, as were others, her role was more of a whistle blower than a reformer.

Ethics legislation that was passed in 2007 was two years overdue and supported by the same legislators who looked the other way during the events of the previous administration that pointed out th existing loopholes in the state's ethics laws.

It took the FBI raids in August of 2006 and the indictment of former lawmaker Tom Anderson months later to force lawmakers to finally close the loopholes they had ignored for years.

Cleaning up the Republican Party? Even after her much publicized battle with GOP party chairman Randy Ruedrich over ethics, she remained silent at the 2004 Republican State Convention while Ruedrich was re-nominated unanimously.

This past spring at the 2008 Republican State Convention, Palin in her speech to delegates pushed for replacing Ruedrich but her calls were unanswered. Palin supporters who wanted Ruedrich out simply couldn't attract enough Ron Paul supporters who seemed more concerned with revoking the Patriot Act and legalizing Marijuana.

Another weakness is Palin's habit of tailoring the facts of a situation to meet her political needs.

Yesterday in her Dayton acceptance speech, Palin stated, "...I championed reform to end the abuses of earmark spending by Congress. In fact, I told Congress -- I told Congress, 'Thanks, but no thanks,' on that bridge to nowhere. If our state wanted a bridge, I said we'd build it ourselves."

This was not true.

Not only did the state keep the money that was earmarked for the bridge to be used on other transportation projects, but Palin had been a strong supporter of the bridge during her gubernatorial run in 2006, claiming Alaska needed to seize upon the seniority of its congressional delegation.

According to the Ketchikan Daily News on August 8, 2006, 'People across the nation struggle with the idea of building a bridge because they’ve been under these misperceptions about the bridge and the purpose,' said Palin, who described the link as the Ketchikan area’s potential for expansion and growth.

Palin said Alaska’s congressional delegation worked hard to obtain funding for the bridge as part of a package deal and that she 'would not stand in the way of the progress toward that bridge.'”

And again on September 29, 2006, she told the Ketchikan Daily News, "Part of my agenda is making sure that Southeast is heard. That your projects are important. That we go to bat for Southeast when we’re up against federal influences that aren’t in the best interest of Southeast.'

She cited the widespread negative attention focused on the Gravina Island crossing project. 'We need to come to the defense of Southeast Alaska when proposals are on the table like the bridge and not allow the spinmeisters to turn this project or any other into something that’s so negative,' Palin said.

Yesterday, it took bloggers less than a few hours after her acceptance speech in Dayton to call her on the claim that she turned back the federal earmark for the bridge to nowhere.

Palin will need to learn that reporters are hanging on her every word and that the level of scrutiny from the press will be relentless.

The lack of domestic and foreign policy knowledge will become problematic if Palin doesn't become a fast learner. During her twenty months in office as governor she has introduced no major policy issues dealing with health care, education or public safety.

With Americans worried about mortgage payments, health care and the cost of energy, Palin will need to offer them more than just glittering generalities.

As a close observer of her administration, Palin has had a habit of holding press conferences surrounded by the crutch of her staff.

When questions get too detailed, she anxiously looks around the room for someone to save her. This won't be possible when she is standing on her own.

And foreign policy will be one of her biggest challenges, especially standing toe to toe against Sen. Joe Biden who is considered by many as an expert on foreign affairs. With geo-political events just one match away from becoming a raging bonfire, Palin needs to be able to articulate an understanding of the global conflicts and possible solutions.

Palin's lack of foreign policy is already becoming foder for late night comedians. Friday night Jay Leno poked at Palin's lack of foreign experience.

"Tonight on the show we have Olympic gymnast Shawn Johnson who just got back from Beijing. You know what that means don't you? It means she has more foreign policy experience than Sarah Palin," Leno joked.

But jokes aside, with McCain's age being a factor, the phrase being a heartbeat away from the presidency takes on new meaning. Palin will need to get up to speed on a tremendous amount of issues fast.


The most obvious threat is that Sarah Palin is not qualified to be the President of the United States. With John McCain at age 72, he would be the oldest President ever elected. This means the Vice President slot will be watched extremely close.

There are a number of other threats as well that Palin faces if she doesn't realize the rules have changed and the stakes are high. The scrutiny she is under will be unlike anything she has ever been through before.

During the gubernatorial campaign throughout Alaska, if a reporter showed up to cover an event, that was a coup. Today she won't be able to go to the grocery store without press following her and noting what she is buying.

Palin won't be able to say one thing one week and another thing another week. As soon as she does it will be a bit on The Daily Show with John Stewart.

Palin has had the comfort of being treated very respectfully by the Alaska media and some might argue with kid gloves. No more. She will have a pack of two dozen reporters following her every move and hanging on her every word. With the concern about her inexperience already coming into play, the press will be listening and waiting for any slip up to pounce on.

She has also exhibited a quick temper with those who question her. Time to grow a really, really thick skin. Every one of these reporters is looking for a better story than their colleague, which means nothing is off limits.

Finally, she needs to learn and learn fast. During the campaign in 2006 my biggest surprise was that Palin's message on issues never matured between January and November.

In April of 2006, Palin and I shared a cup of coffee together in the Captain Cook coffee shop. We had just been at a debate up at the University of Fairbanks the night before and she said although the was impressed with my ability to state policies and figures, when looking out over the audience, she wondered to herself if having a grasp of that really mattered.

In October of 2006, at a health care debate at UAA late in the campaign, while Tony Knowles and I waited backstage to go on, Palin sat in the corner with two of her aides trying to force feed her health care information. She ended up walking on stage with an arm load of health care reports.

The fact was that having a grasp of policies and figures didn't matter. Because at the end of the day, policies and figures didn't win the election; Palin won the election by being the candidate that people liked the most, not the candidate that knew the most.

The threat is that she will try and apply that same recipe to running on a nationwide platform and I don't think that will help her and will be highlighted by the press and in the media.

But the biggest unknown threat remains the ongoing investigation regarding the firing of former Public safety Commissioner Walt Monegan.

The fact that McCain selected Palin even though this investigation has just begun, shows that either Palin has convinced them that this is much to do about nothing, or the McCain camp feels they can spin the outcome if it's bad.

According to Lisa Demer at the Anchorage Daily News, the McCain campaign says Palin “was never directly involved” and blamed the controversy on the campaign of the Democratic nominee, U.S. Sen. Barack Obama.

“The Governor did nothing wrong and has nothing to hide. It’s outrageous that the Obama campaign is trying to attack her over a family issue. As a reformer and a leader on ethics reform, she has been happy to help out in the investigation of this matter, because she was never directly involved,” the campaign said in a statement.

However, for the first time on Friday, Monegan offered confirmation that he felt he was fired by Palin due to his refusal to fire her ex brother in law, State Trooper Mike Wooten.

“It was a significant factor if not the factor,” Monegan said.

In addition, Monegan confirmed publicly what we reported on this blog yesterday about the existence of emails he received directly from Palin regarding Wooten.

This of course contradicts Palin's claim that she was never directly involved.

"Monegan also disclosed for the first time Friday that Palin sent him two or three e-mails that referenced her ex-brother-in-law and his status with troopers but he wouldn’t provide them because of the ongoing investigation," reported the ADN's Demer.

The investigation will take even more turns as there are reports now that the Palin administration has ceased cooperating with special investigator Branchflower and some Palin staffers are talking about jumping ship before it starts to sink.

This remains a constant threat and one that will not go away anytime soon.

They say a week is a lifetime in politics; what happens the next nine weeks will make Alaskan history for a lifetime.

Read More

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McCain on the road to skank- With shock jocks

Sarah has always made it a point to appear on this show, she has never appeared on legitimate conservative talk. The Bob & Mark Show on KWHL 106.5 FM -- The same duo who called the Senate President a bitch and cancer as Sarah Palin laughed and giggled at the comments.

Here are a few excerpts, but they're pretty incomplete. You can listen to the Bob & Mark interview here.


BOB LESTER: Oh my god, you looked so great. I'm so happy for you. ... I got to be honest with you, I cried when my children were born, I cried like a baby this morning.

PALIN: Oh, I love you.

BOB: Wow. Wow. When did you know for sure you had it?

PALIN: Yesterday. Yesterday morning. I spoke with the Senator and he asked do you really want to do this. And I said if I can help, absolutely I want to do this.

LESTER: What kind of process did you have to go through in order for them to say you're the one?

PALIN: Well they had been doing homework for many months evidentally. And in this last week, they just started wrapping everything up. And they called me just a few days ago ...


LESTER: Gov. Sarah Palin who is now the vice presidential candidate of the United States of America. Oh my god, I can't believe I just said that it's so awesome. Are you going to still be acting governor while you campaign?

PALIN: Absolutely, It's a 67-day campaign, I will still be serving as governor in addition to campaigning across the country and this is going to be very, very good for Alaskans.

LESTER: it's already great for Alaska. How nice is it to have an Alaska politician on TV not getting arrested?

PALIN: That's right, let us change that image, that perception, ... it's all about reform* Bob. That's what we're going to be all about ...

NOTE: Then, before long, McCain gets on the phone. Seriously. He ignorantly stated, Sarah is a *reformer, she has *reformed Alaska and I can't wait till she has an opportunity to do for America what she has done for Alaska.

*"abuse of power"

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Friday, August 29, 2008

Google.... Palin Investigated

Alaska investigating governor's office
CNN - 1 hour ago
Sarah Palin's office is being investigated over the firing of her brother-in-law. Republican John McCain introduced Palin in Dayton, Ohio, as his running ...

McCain Running Mate Palin Faces State Investigation (Update1)
Bloomberg - 1 hour ago
French said it ``remains to be seen'' whether the investigation embarrasses Palin. The important issue, he said, will be whether evidence emerges that ties ...

McCain's VP Pick Palin Facing Ethics Investigation
Washington Post, United States - 4 hours ago
Hollis French, a Democrat, told The Wall Street Journal that Palin could face impeachment. After French's comments, Palin ordered the investigation into ...

Palin Ethics Investigation
New York Times, United States - 4 hours ago
The investigation follows on the heels of Mrs. Palin’s abrupt decision in mid-July to dismiss Walt Monegan, her Public Safety Commissioner. ...

McCain’s VP Choice Is Under Ethics Investigation For Abuse Of ...
Think Progress, DC - 6 hours ago

Though Palin says she doesn’t “have anything to hide” and she “didn’t do anything wrong there,” an investigation has found to the contrary.....

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Palin circles the wagons: Transparency a casualty

Seems like just yesterday, Sarah Palin was on a passionate crusade for open and transparent government. Fighting the Randy Ruedrichs and the Greg Renkes of the world, demanding a government that allowed a clear view for all to see from the outside.

Today it appears time for Palin to write an obituary for that noble crusade.

In a shocking interview with Anchorage Daily News Reporter Lisa Demer on Thursday, Palin's Communication Director Bill McAllister defended the administration's abandonement of their "open and transparent government" promise by saying it didn't really apply to everything.

"Open and transparent government was something that came up during the campaign and was largely in reference to the stranded gas act versus the AGIA concept under Governor Palin."

One thing comes to mind after listening to McAllister rewrite history regarding the promises Palin made about open and transparent government; what the hell is Bill McAllister talking about?

But don't take my word for it; look at the facts.

First, go the State of Alaska website and search the terms "Open and transparent." No fewer than 5 pages appear with soundbites from Governor Palin about her commitment to open and transparent government while speaking about different initiatives.

Second, simply look at history. Time and time again, when Palin has invoked the words open and transparent, there is no mention of the stranded gas act or AGIA as McAllister claims.

In November of 2006 on her campaign website she promised voters, "Sarah will open the door wide to transparent and accountable government."

On November 1, 2007 after the indictment of Vic Kohring, Palin's press release stated, " Public trust and integrity are the foundation of good government. This reaffirms my commitment to conduct the people’s business in an open and transparent fashion.”

On March 28, 2006 in a press release regarding putting the state's checkbook online she said it was part of implementing her mandate for more open, transparent government.

In the interview with McAllister, the ADN's Demer ask him if the Palin administration was backing away from it's "guiding principle" of open and transparent government.

McAllister offered Demer another shocking response, "Open and transparent does not mean you lose all common sense and conduct everything out in the open."

The truth is this entire administration has begun to batten down the hatches due to the Branchflower investigation.

The recent opinion by Attorney General Talis Colberg that state employees have a right to privacy while using state issued communication equipment has set off a heated debate and one that will undoubtedly end up in court.

In addition, the governor's Department of Administration appears on the verge of enacting more stringent requirements for the public to ask for public records.

Oh my dear openness and transparency, what has happened to thee?

I'll tell what happened; Palin and her staff have been using their state issued Blackberrys and computers to conduct acts of personal retribution, and the attorney general is covering for them.

So why come out with this opinion now, especially in the middle of a scandal fueled by the revalations of secret communications?

According to one of my sources who tipped me off about the Bailey phone call days before it was publicly released as well as the Kopp payout days before it was publicly released; the governor is in deep snow.

Apparently there is credible evidence of Blackberry communications that Palin herself communicated with her staff and Monegan about firing Wooten.

This explains Colberg's over reaching opinion which has many government watchers shaking their collective heads.

One of our legal friends offered this brief analysis of Colberg's recent opinion:

The AG says that we the People need to trust our government to make decisions for us. It is doubtful that any employee ever has a constitutionally protected "expectation of privacy" when they are using their employer's communications equipment. That is black letter law for private employers, and the AG makes a huge leap in logic when he then says that the privacy clause of the Alaska Constitution turns that on its head.

This is not a situation where the government is proactively intruding into private citizens' private lives; instead, it is a situation where a person has chosen to be employed by the State and has voluntarily placed their personal information on a public system.

The argument that because the use is "insignificant" in no way means that it should be excepted from the public records act. That logic simply doesn't follow. It just means that if that indeed is the legal standard, and the use is "insignificant," then the employee doesn't get tagged with an ethics violation.

Here is but one ridiculous result from this new ad hoc "policy": the public is not allowed to see the documents by which the public could determine if the use of public resources is de minimus or insignificant. We must simply trust the government – in this case, the same people that may have violated the law -- to look at the communications in secret and out of the public view and make a determination.

The AG also applies tortured interpretation of the public records law to mean that it somehow excludes certain documents because they are not "public records" as defined by statute as "developed or received by a public agency."

Following this reasoning, political activity on state computers (or alleged political activity) would NOT BE A PUBLIC RECORD, and therefore could not be disclosed to the public.

In addition, as noted above, to the extent the privacy clause of the AK Constitution protects state employees expectations of privacy, it would likewise apply allegedly political activity. This cannot be right, and this example shows the fundamental flaw in logic of Sarah's AG office.

The People are entitled to see and judge for themselves if a state employee's communications are de minimus or insignificant just as they are entitled to view alleged political activity and judge for themselves.

A former State Labor Relations Director also offered his opinion:

This is a formal, written opinion of the Attorney General and as such is the law unless and until a Court decides otherwise. Significantly, it was written by Bockman, the Ethics Attorney. More significantly, it represents a fundamental departure from the State's official practice regarding private use of State electronic resources.

Back in the "good old days" the only issue was either excessive time on a State phone or running up long distance bills on one. Excessive time would get you disciplined, running up long distance would get you disciplined and made to pay for them and might get you fired. Life was simple.

The Knowles Administration was in a heated rush to wire the State and get everybody on email and the internet. There were some pretty good fights between the "free internet" types with the Administration, e.g., Com. Boyer, and the tight-assed bureaucrats, like me, who wanted some rules on usage. At first the free internet types had the upper hand, but life being life and employees being employees, a high level IT employee in Public Safety used a State computer to make a date with a fourteen year old, at least it was a girl, and got caught by the APD. The Administration decided they might need some rules after all and the IT policy was promulgated and each employee obligated to adhere to it.

The key to State policy regarding electronic resources, and any other State resources, e.g., your desk drawer, is that it is NOT your resource and you have NO expectation of privacy in its use. The State explicitly tolerates de minimis personal use, but the price of being able to get the grocery list from your spouse by email is that it becomes the State's email and if somebody wanted your grocery list, they get it under the PRA.

This Opinion is a dramatic departure from that, and it is an unnecessary and foolish one. The AG has now countenanced PRIVATE personal use of State resources, something that is unprecedented. The Opinion is right, but the policy is wrong, stupid, and will bite this or some other administration in the a**. It is a policy question as to whether State employees have an expectation of privacy in the use of State electronic resources. If they do have that expectation, then Alaska's quite stringent Constitutional privacy protections inhere to the employees. But the Constitution does not guarantee them that privacy, it only protects them where they have the expectation of privacy.

State employees have never before had the expectation of privacy in ANY act related to their job or for which there is even a nexus to their job. The State rather routinely fires employees for off duty conduct for which a job nexus can be demonstrated. Now the State has said that some of your actions on a cell phone, Blackberry, or State computer are private and cannot be used against you or discovered under the PRA.

I have had some spirited exchanges with AAG Bockman myself over the contours and limits of the Ethics Act. I'm willing to bet this ain't her idea! I know most of the Labor and State Affairs (or whatever they're calling it this week) attorneys and I know they know better than to confer an expectation of privacy on State employees. So, the question becomes, Who made the policy decision and why?

It is evident to anyone watching that almost everyone in this Administration with a range that starts with a 2 uses Blackberries like Ninth Grade girls use their cell phone. It is equally evident that some very dumb things have been said and done on those Blackberries. Now they want to countenance a notion of privacy so those dumb things don't get spread all over the front page of the ADN as the result of a Public Records Act request.

Here's hoping that there's another dumba** in the wings to make a date with a fourteen year old or some such so that the utter foolishness of this shortsighted opinion will become evident and the policy will be reversed.

There's been an ongoing controversy about whether or not even the allowed de minimis use of State cell phones, laptops, PDAs, internet services, etc. represents a form of compensation to employees and thus must be reported to the IRS as taxable compensation.

I'm pretty sure this settles it; now that it is legally sanctioned to make PRIVATE, not governmental, use of these devices, the State can spend a few thousand dollars worth of Fiscal Section time every month going through the bills, emails, and histories to determine what is personal, private use, determining its value, and adding it to each employee's taxable compensation.

Sometimes I'm still amazed at what supposedly intelligent people do.

Changes in regulations regarding public information requests

The Department of Administration has issued a notice to adopt regulation changes in Title 2 of the Alaska Administrative Code, dealing with the Alaska Public Records Act, to comprehensively refine, update and clarify the regulations, standardize terminology used; refine statutory authority citations and make other changes.

It appears very clear that the Palin administration is using the Attorney General's over reaching opinion to craft more restrictive rules on what the public can gain access to.

One has to wonder, what if Governor Murkowski attempted this brazen move while Palin was waving the red flag about Randy Ruedrich and Greg Renkes using state resources for personal business.

The news regarding the death of open government has not been greatly exaggerated.

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Concerns about Possible Retribution for Speaking Out

Due to the valid concerns about possible retribution for speaking out and the prospect that some may feel intimidated not to speak out at all, I'm publishing the content of the email here on my website so the governor can be advised accordingly without putting any of the guardsmen at risk of being identified.

Craig Campbell, the Commissioner of DMVA and the Adjutant General of Alaska made a policy that there would be no Alaska Air National Guard promotions to Colonel, Lieutenant Colonel or Chief Master Sergeant without his personal approval.

The intent is to "motivate" these senior leaders to recruit more new people into the ANG. This policy has frozen the advancement of some very deserving individuals who have already earned the right to be promoted. As the Adjutant General, he has the right to institute any plan he wishes. This edict was tolerated by our loyal Guardsmen until the hypocrisy became overwhelming.

Evidently, General Campbell is receiving an unprecedented and undeserved promotion to three-star rank on Sept 7. The Guardsmen found out about this travesty when a call went out for volunteers to fill the room for his ceremony. The response was almost non-existent.

Adjutants General of the 50 States are authorized Major General (two-star) rank and in all but rare circumstances are granted Federal Recognition as Major Generals. This means they are "real" Major Generals with all the respect that comes with such high rank.

General Campbell's promotion will be a "state" promotion. He will be a three-star general only while on State business. In a very rank-conscious environment, this distinction will not be lost on the other Flag Officers. He will look the part of a three-star general but will not be regarded as one by the very people he needs to work with and influence.

This promotion will only benefit General Campbell who will trumpet his new rank. It will not be help further the cause of the Alaska National Guard or its loyal and now outraged members.

No one can be promoted to the top ranks because of perceived leadership deficiencies but even with his obvious leadership flaws, he has no reluctance whatsoever to accept a cosmetic promotion.

I believe the Governor's office will receive substantial correspondence urging her to reconsider this insult to the men and women of the Alaska National Guard.

I also have no doubt most of that correspondence will be anonymous due to the genuine fear of retribution and retaliation if the Governor does the right thing and cancels this hypocrisy

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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

This is open and transparent government?

Open Government: The gospel according to Colberg
There are stories abound about the on going Branchflower investigation regarding Troopergate that seem to come right out of a Law & Order episode.

Branchflower showing up in offices, flanked by techies, ordering hands off of keyboards and searching hard drives of state employees computers for emails...or possibly missing emails.

Meanwhile Attorney General Talis Colberg issued the attached memo regarding personal use of state issued equipment such as Blackberry PDA's and computers along with an opinion regarding the liability of those communications being subject to public disclosure.

Pay close attention to pages 12 and 13 of the memo.

It appears that short of going to court and requesting an opinion from a judge, the state and it's current governor and her administration can define just about anything as a private conversation and be protected from public disclosure.

Is this really the true definition of open and transparent government? Actually, this is deceit and corruption by mere amateurs. Funny stuff if it weren't so serious.

See this Article in Print!
Download Article (PDF)

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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Sarah Palin being interviewed. Who's the "HATER" here?

Here are a couple clips to prove that point....

Phone interview with Gov. Sarah Palin

And here's a handheld video from an interview in Halcro's Anchorage office.

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Saturday, August 16, 2008

Just for the Record- Sarah Palin is Deceitful

Non of this is about Trooper Wooten. This is about a person of low character in Sarah Palin getting into a place of power. Than using that power in a vindictive and deceitful way to create an unlawful outcome. All of the complaints against Trooper Wooten were investigated and most were not sustained. We all have complaints about the due process of something, a judges ruling, a jury ruling, a decision made by the planning and zoning commission. That doesn't mean there was a scandal or a cover up it just means people saw things differently. After all, isn't that what the governor is arguing now; that although it looks like really wasn't.

Twenty five complaints against Wooten including some that were so ridiculous they shouldn't even of been given any credence but they were. Two of the three he admitted to doing on his own and the third was the unprecendented action taken bu Col. Grimes to go back in and change the investigators findings.

Most of those complaints were obsessive. Like the one where Sarah accused Wooten of drinking and driving then when she was questioned admitted she had never witnessed the incident, but had only heard from someone else that it happened.

If you don't like the process, then change the system....don't keep going after Wooten.

Wooten Challenge
Read More

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Friday, August 15, 2008

Palin lying about Bailey's phone call

In a taped interview with Anchorage Daily News Reporter Kyle Hopkins yesterday, Governor Sarah Palin stated unequivocably that Frank Bailey acted completely on his own.

"No one ever directed him to make any calls, he never disclosed he made any calls," Palin said.

This is a lie.

On February 29, an email was sent from Frank Bailey to Ivy Frye just after Bailey's recorded phone call to Alaska State Trooper Rodney Dial.

"Leaving pretty quick for the me though I need to give you a heads up. Spoke to Rodney and he doesn't get that kind of stuff since he's a Lieutenant, but he'd definitely pass it on."

Not only that, but Palin also told Hopkins that "Todd never told Frank Bailey or suggest he take on this mission to call a trooper."

However according to phone logs, Todd Palin called Ivy Frye three times between 1:45pm and 3:50pm on the afternoon of February 28, the day before Bailey's call to Dial.

But there is more. The Palin administration has refused to release over 1100 additional emails citing "Executive privilege" and "Deliberative Process".

According to the privilege log of those emails that weren't released, there are eleven different emails between 7pm on February 28 and 11:41am on February 29 with the subject line "re: PSEA" sent between Ivy Frye, Annette Kreitzer, Sarah Palin, Frank Bailey, Todd Palin and Kris Perry.

Given the fact that Bailey's recorded phone call that was placed around 9:30am on Feb 29 and was prefaced about the PSEA (Public Safety Employees Association); who wants to bet the reason Palin doesn't want to release these emails is because they have to do with Wooten?

I have attached both the email and the phone log which were released as part of an unrelated information request.

To hear Governor's Palin's interview with Kyle Hopkins:

To see the privilage log of emails that haven't been released:

More Links of Interest

Raw feed: Palin (Updated) - 8/13/2008 10:00 pm

"Alaska Troopergate" - 8/14/2008 2:00 pm

Palin interview - 8/15/2008 11:04 am

The Bailey phone call - 8/13/2008 4:28 pm

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Palin says, "calls were not pressure". Huh?

Anchorage Daily News

As an investigator hired by the Legislature began looking into the firing of the state's former top cop, Gov. Sarah Palin was defiant Thursday.

A damning phone call from one of her staffers doesn't prove Palin's team was trying to get former Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan to fire her ex-brother-in-law, Palin said in a telephone interview.

And if Monegan felt pressured to ax the trooper, he would have said so, she added. "I'm sure Monegan would have come to me and said, 'Call off the dogs, I'm feeling pressure.' "

Whether the governor, family members or staff members squeezed Monegan to fire the trooper, Mike Wooten, who was battling Palin's sister in an emotional divorce, has become a political fireball in the two-year-old Palin administration.

Monegan said Thursday that he never specifically told Palin he was feeling pressed -- he didn't think he had to say it, he said -- but that he would sigh every time he heard complaints originating from the governor's office about the trooper.

To everybody "that I had an opportunity to speak to, I basically told them that DPS will handle it," Monegan said.

If you've been asleep all week, here's the recap: Wooten was locked in a custody battle with Palin's sister. Palin fired Monegan in July, saying she wanted to move the department in a different direction.

Monegan has said he felt pressured to get rid of Wooten, and now the Legislature has hired an investigator to find out if there was anything fishy about his dismissal by the governor. Palin says Wooten had nothing to do with it.

The Department of Law began its own investigation first, at Palin's request.

On Wednesday, Palin released a recording of a phone call between one of her directors, Frank Bailey, and a trooper lieutenant outlining various complaints against Wooten -- from drunken driving to lying on an application -- saying the governor and her husband wondered why the trooper still had a job.

Palin says she never asked Bailey to make the call, which she called "just wrong." But she argued Thursday that it doesn't mean her administration pressured Monegan.

"If that's pressure, then (after) years in law enforcement, how do they do their job if that's perceived as pressure?" she said.

Palin has said her staff made at least 20 calls to the Department of Public Safety regarding Wooten -- often asking about the process of investigating or disciplining a trooper.

Monegan said the issue kept re-appearing like a bad penny.

"We don't ignore complaints, but if it's the same one with no new evidence ... then I have to tell people that there's nothing new here," he said.

Read More

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Thursday, August 14, 2008

Palin's latest explanations leave more questions

Governor and staff's latest explanations leave more questions
By Corey Allen-Young, CBS 11 News Reporter

Governor Sarah Palin It was a stunning development Wednesday:
Governor Palin admitted to possible pressure from her administration to fire former Department of Public Safety Director Walt Monegan. But it's how the Governor and her staff are explaining this latest development, compared to what they've said just last month, that is noteworthy. The taped phone call we all heard Wednesday reveals possible pressure. But when pressed to explain how these latest developments play into what was said in the past, one could be left scratching their head.

From the very beginning of the investigation, former Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan has said that he did feel pressure from Governor Palin to get rid of trooper Michael Wooten, her ex brother in law.

"There was pressure for that, yes," said Monegan.

Pressure that just weeks ago, Palin, her administration, and her husband denied.

"To tell you that, truth is, that no pressure was ever put on anybody to fire anybody," said Palin on July 18th.

"Some may say it's pressure and I say it's just informing," said Todd Palin, the Governor's husband.

Key members of the Palin administration also denied talking to Monegan.

"I just can not recall a specific conversation where Commissioner Monegan and I talked about this specific trooper," said Annette Kreitzer, the Commissioner of Administration.

"If Walt Monegan says if I ever talked to him or pressured him about even talking to him about Wooten, that is absolutely false," said Frank Bailey, the Boards and Commissions Director.

Wednesday, the Governor changed course, admitting now that one of her own made phone calls that could be perceived as pressure and were just plain wrong. It was Bailey who had previously denied applying any pressure, but admitted Wednesday that his call sounds different.

"I got to be honest, listening to the tape you know it certainly sounds like I am putting pressure on him," said Bailey.

It wasn't just Bailey who

Former Department of Public Safety Director Walt Monegan called.
"I was one of the calls and that much I can tell you," said Attorney General Talis Colberg.

Monegan says he was working with the governor's staff over the issue of Trooper Wooten.

"I was contacted by Commissioner Annette Kreitzer and Chief of Staff Mike Tibbles and then I heard that Frank Bailey had contacted one of the commanders," said Monegan.

But Palin said Wednesday the subject of her ex-brother-in-law never came up with Monegan.

"We never had a conversation on whether trooper Wooten should be a trooper or not," said Palin.

Monegan says not true.

"She wanted to talk about it on the phone and we talked once at the capitol building. And she brought it up. And I actually advised her that she shouldn't be talking about it."

The Governor also has shown some contradictions in regards to the reason to Monegan's dismissal. Wednesday she said that Monegan was let go due to some concerns in his command.

"I was concerned also that we were not doing enough on continuing alcohol abuse issues that I wanted to see tackled, including the bootlegging issues in rural Alaska," Palin said Wednesday.

But weeks ago she praised Monegan for his abilities to solve those same issues when offering him a job as the director of the Alcohol Beverage Control Board.

"I recognized that Walt's interests and strengths could be put to good use as he could concentrate exclusively on a couple of issues that were his interest, that be bootlegging

Frank Bailey, Boards and Commissions Director and alcohol problems in rural Alaska," said Palin on July 17th.
As the special investigation on the governor's potential abuse of power continues, the questions remain on what the governor and her administration's purpose was in dealing with the Department of Public Safety. The Governor continues to say she has nothing to hide and will answer any questions. Walt Monegan says he is cooperating with the investigation as he has already started talking to the investigator, Steve Branchflower.

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Palin is a liar- unbenounced to her

ANCHORAGE, Alaska-- Wednesday brought a dramatic turn of events regarding an inquiry into Gov. Sarah Palin's termination of Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan.

The governor hastily called a press conference to announce that her administration did in fact make calls regarding Alaska State Trooper Mike Wooten.

Palin said her administration made more than 20 calls to the Department of Public Safety regarding Wooten, the governor's former brother-in-law.

Palin previously had denied her administration pressured Monegan but at least one of those calls was caught on tape.

Recently Palin told Channel 2 News that Monegan was not terminated over his refusal to terminate Wooten.

She continues to stand by that statement. But now she says evidence uncovered by an inquiry by a state attorney general inquiry suggests the administration applied pressure on Monegan to fire Wooten.

"The individual inquiries taken by themselves are one thing. Many of these inquiries were completely appropriate; however, the serial nature of the contacts understandably could be perceived as some kind of pressure, presumably at my direction," Palin said.

Attorney General Talis Colberg's office determined there were more than two dozen calls from Palin's husband, Todd Palin, and her staff to Monegan and other supervisors in the department regarding Wooten.

Colberg also reports it wasn't just Bailey contacting Monegan and others at DPS regarding Trooper Wooten.

However, in a reverse statement to the governors the attorney general revealed that he, along with Todd Palin and former Palin Chief of Staff Mike Tibbles had all made contact with possible threats regarding Wooten.

Palin can continue to think she is fooling someone with this seemingly open presentation. However, what is really seen is unethical behavior. It appears to the vast majority of Alaskans that Sarah Palin is a LIAR. Palin's narcissistic thought: Investigate thyself- Destroy most of the evidence immediately, try to threaten underlings so they will not speak, found is nasty, ugly, evil, unethical, spin on my own terms..... of course.

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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Is Palin tampering with witnesses?

There were received two separate emails from two very credible sources that have alledged that the Palin administration is interviewing employees at the Department of Public Safety to find out what they know about the Monegan firing.

Here are the excerpts from those emails:

"The governor has directed the AG to conduct an ‘under oath’ inquisition of everyone at DPS to find out what they know and what they might tell the special investigator. This is totally out of bounds. I won’t say illegal, but some folks I trust say it is illegal use of the AGs office by the governor. Cockerham has been tipped on this one, but I don’t know if the folks at DPS are willing to say anything."

"This is quasi public information now, but I thought I would pass it on:

Dept. of Law has been interviewing individuals likely to be questioned by Branchflower.

The interviews by law were conducted before branchflower could interview them and at least one, John Glass, was conducted with attorneys present for the interviewee. I was told they may have even been conducted under oath.

Hollis has been informed. Apparently he is not pleased.

This kind of stuff could be construed as witness tampering. It's also interesting that the state would sit on it's hands while the FBI investigates for fear of interfering, but when it comes to this investigation the head of the anchorage criminal section of DOL is interviewing the acting commissioner of DPS. The interviews are being conducted by Sue McLean."

The following email was sent to Sharon Leighow in Governor Palin's office:

I have heard from several people that the administration is having the Department of Law interview people at DPS to find out what they know before the are interviewed by Branchflower.
Is the Department of Law doing ANY investigating or interviewing potential Branchflower witnesses about the Monegan firing?

Read More

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Sarah Palin- Highlight the Lack of Class

"I feel like this is kind of a sport right now and that the haters and critics are really jumping," Gov. Palin said. "It's much ado about nothing"

The investigator will decide what nothing is not you Sarah.

Not only does it highlight the lack of class that Palin has, but it's totally ironic coming from a governor who last week on national television answered a question from the host by saying,
I can't answer that question until someone answers for me what is it exactly that the Vice President does.

Read More>

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

She's transparent alright, but not too open or honest.

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - E-mails from the Palin administration are being withheld from the public and the governor is citing executive privilege.

With subject lines like "Fagan," "Andrew Halcro" and even "Alaska Ear," it makes some wonder how those topics could possibly be policy related; especially since those same e-mails were copied to the governor's husband.

The administration says public employees need to know they can debate openly amongst themselves.

Andree McLeod, who tried repeatedly to get a job with the Palin administration, obtained the e-mails through a public records request.

The Department of Law says the e-mails are privileged. Officials say the private e-mails within the Palin administration won't be released.

"Part of the reason for not releasing e-mail messages is that there is a privileged recognized by the Alaska Supreme Court and courts across the country that is designed to encourage advisers to the governor to be frank and candid," Assistant Attorney General Dave Jones said.

Radio talk show host Dan Fagan is a Palin critic.

He says this isn't about policy. It's about not letting the public see what people in the administration have to say about Palin critics.

"If this is about executive privilege and confidential information then Todd should not be privy to them," Fagan said. "He's a regular citizen he does not get to be co-governor. We did not slash Todd on the ballot box."

Fagan is referring to Todd Palin, the governor's husband who also got copies of many of the e-mails.

Jones says the privilege applies in this case.

"That privilege applies to internal memoranda within state government but also to communications that are solicited from people outside state government," he said. "Sometimes the governor will want to solicit advice from people who are not state employees or federal Of course one of the closest advisers to a governor is likely to be that governor's spouse."

The governor says it's a non-issue.

"I feel like this is kind of a sport right now and that the haters and critics are really jumping," Gov. Palin said. "It's much ado about nothing in my opinion."

Palin says her husband is copied on the e-mails simply to make sure she gets a message.

She says her husband has no interest in being a politician.

"That's my job and that's respected by Todd," Palin said. "He's a great Alaskan whom I can bounce ideas off and he's wonderful. But, no Todd's not running the state."

Palin says that previous governor's spouses were much more involved in politics than her husband has been. Former Gov. Frank Murkowski's spouse, Nancy, was considered a senior adviser and attended all meetings.


Contact Rebecca Palsha at

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Alaskan files Ethics Charges Against Palin and her Administration.

To recap, McLeod says e-mails she got through a public records request show the governor's office was using its influence to help a supporter, surveyor Tom Lamal, get a DOT job in Fairbanks.
Here's the complaint Andree McLeod filed against Gov. Sarah Palin and her staff today with the Attorney General's Office. It accuses the governor's office of using its pull to get a Palin supporter hired to a DOT job in Fairbanks. Just got off the phone with Palin, who says no one got any favors.

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Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Vote of No Confidence

Impact of the Vote of No Confidence against this administration and individual commissioners.

The no-confidence vote is the ultimate vehicle, to communicate to the state and the commissioners that the legislature through the represented people of Alaska, perceives the Governor as incompetent, disinterested, non-communicative and/or unwilling to follow logic and proper proceedure and is currently under investigation for "Abuse of Power".
While no doubt there are others who share this view, most observers see a vote of no confidence as a critical, disruptive event in the lives of the governor, the inept commissioners, and the executive administration as a whole. Always found to be well deserved. Such votes often have harsh consequences, with approximately fifty percent of the individuals involved losing their jobs either through voluntary or forced resignation.

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Saturday, August 2, 2008

Branchflower to investigate Gov. Sarah Palin’s abuses.

THE LEGISLATIVE COUNCIL has picked former Alaska Assistant District Attorney Steve Branchflower to investigate Gov. Sarah Palin’s dismissal of former Alaska Department of Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan.

Branchflower, who is to begin immediately, is a good choice for the job. He’s been a prosecutor, a police instructor and an advocate in his role as the head of the Alaska Office Of Victims’ Rights. Lawmakers approved up to $100,000 dollars for the investigation.

At issue is whether Palin abused her office in trying to get a trooper fired who once was married to her sister, and then firing Monegan for refusing to do so.

Branchflower has his work cut out for him, but his credentials indicate he is more than up to task.

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Friday, August 1, 2008

McCain-Palin ticket hits a massive iceberg

Among the names mentioned as potential vice presidential picks for Sen. John McCain has been Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the telegenic, but showing signs of stress 44-year old mother of five.

Paiin, who earned the nickname "Sarah Barracuda" for her intensity as a high-school basketball player, a sobriquet some political opponents have kept alive, won election in 2006 as a reformer and was quickly seen as a rising star in Republican political circles. There was even a "Draft Sarah Palin for Vice President" movement or, at the very least, just a website. Some Alaskans are saying, Draft Sarah, get her out of Alaska.

Palin has some awesome popularity ratings with Alaskan voters, something above 80 percent.

But now Palin is also caught up in a probe of her official conduct that probably nixes whatever long-shot chance she had to be on the McCain ticket. After all, she's only been a governor for two years.

Questions have arisen over whether Palin used her office to try and fire her ex brother-in-law from a state trooper's position. Palin asserts the charge is untrue but the Alaska Senate this week approved the hiring of an independent investigator to look into the charges.

Palin can take comfort in not having been implicated in the federal corruption investigation that has led to the indictment and conviction of some Alaskan politicians, like Sen. Ted Stevens who was indicted earlier this week.

Indeed, Palin made her reputation in Alaska by combating ethically challenged colleagues which didn't make her popular with her colleagues but did lead to the resignation of an Alaskan attorney general whose conflict-of-interest problems she helped to spotlight.

But having an Alaskan on the ticket would likely bring constant attention to the state's corruption problems which, since the state is Republican run, don't help the GOP brand.

Palin has another problem, abuse of power is a serious charge. After Alaska's public-safety commissioner Walt Monegan was fired (Monegan has said he felt pressure to dropkick the trooper) Palin replaced him with the former police chief of the city of Kenai. But he quit after it became known that he received a reprimand after sexual harassment allegations were filed against him in his former post.

At the very least, that incident raises some questions about Palin as a chief executive and might take some of the thrill away for some women who might otherwise be excited about seeing her on the ticket.

Thus, a McCain-Palin ticket doesn't appear to be in the cards.
Chicago Tribune- The Swamp

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