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Palin Myth Bustin'

October 30, 2008 · 2 Comments

In our whirlwind affair with Sarah Palin, it’s just possible that the gal we thought we knew isn’t exactly who we’ve been told.  The image-meisters have been selling us a Palin that doesn’t exist.  The package doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.  Here I’ll attempt to debunk some of the most egregious myths:

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Myth #1: Palin is a Reformer.

Fact: Palin is no Reformer. Palin started her political career by shaking up the Wasilla government, but it was with the significant help and encouragement of the state Republican party.   As Sarah was running for Governor the Veco bribery scandal was starting to reshape state politics.   Palin had no role whatsoever in uncovering or prosecuting the corruption, but she had a keen political sense, and took advantage of the scandal to further her own desire for power.  Sensing the changing winds, she grabbed on to the mantle of reformer and has held on since.  Apparently Palin thinks a leader is someone who sees where the mob is heading and runs like heck to get in front of them.

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Myth #2:  Palin is loyal to those around her

Fact:  Palin regularly turns viciously against her former friends. Palin started her political career in the little town of Wasilla.  Sarah met the sitting mayor and police chief in her aerobics class.  With the help of these friends, she ran for the city council.  Once there, she turned against her former friends, and drove them out of office so that she could take power, calling them “good ol’ boys.”  If there is one trait that comes through loud and clear with Sarah Palin it is raw ambition and disregard for the means of obtaining power.  Perhaps it is this trait that accounts for her extremely strained relationship with many who have had to deal with her, including her husband’s mother.

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Myth #3:  Palin is a Fiscal Conservative

Fact: Palin raised taxes and left Wasilla in debt. Palin raised the sales tax while mayor of Wasilla.  When she left, the town had millions of dollars of debt that had been taken on in order to build a new sports complex.  The debt was higher than just the construction costs; enormous legal fees had been incurred because proper title to the land had not been obtained before building had started, and resulted in a protracted and expensive legal battle.  Palin raised taxes, and incurred debt.  And that state jet she sold while Governor?  It turns out selling things on eBay is a standard method of selling state property.  Only in the case of the jet they couldn’t sell it on eBay, and had to turn to a private broker, and then they lost over half a million dollars on the sale.  Nice story for her RNC speech, it just wasn’t quite true.

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Myth #4:  Palin is Against Earmarks

Fact:  In Alaska, a politician has to get money from the federal government to survive. Palin was no different.   Alaska has the highest intake from the Federal government per capita of any state in the union.  Palin excelled at getting earmarks, and was able to obtain over $27 million in federal earmarks for little Wasilla over three years.  And that “Bridge To Nowhere” that she was against?  Well, first she was for it.  When the attention and outcry meant that the project was no longer feasible, then she was against it.  Make no mistake – during her run for Governor, Sarah Palin supported the bridge to nowhere.  And after she was against it, she still kept the money and directed it to different projects.  Against earmarks?  Hardly.

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Myth #5:  Palin had great success with her Pipeline Project

Fact:  The jury is still out. Palin basically told the big 3 American oil companies to pound sand, and cut a deal with a Canadian company to build a pipeline.  The problem was that she committed over five hundred million dollars of Alaska’s money on the $40 billion deal, and the legislature still hasn’t approved the funds.  It could be a coup, it could be a fiasco.  Like so much that is left in Palin’s wake, there is a lot of disruption from the large waves of her impulsiveness and lack of foresight.

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Myth #6:  Palin is squeaky clean

Fact:  Troopergate. The independent investigator found that Palin violated ethics law and standards.  She used her position as Governor to pursue a personal vendetta against her ex-brother-in-law.  Her entire political career is littered with the complaints of her former allies as she has pursued her small town agenda with a big state apparatus.  Billings to the State:  Palin took her per diem expenses for over 300 days when she was in her own home.  She brought along her husband and children and charged expenses to the State even though they had no official State business, and then didn’t report the picked up expenses as income.

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Myth #7:  Palin’s high popularity in Alaska was because of her expertise running Alaskan government.

Fact:  Palin used oil company money to pay off Alaskan citizens. Two thousand dollars for every Alaskan.  And then an extra twelve hundred dollars thanks to Sarah and the windfall profits tax.  The same taxes that McCain and most Republicans oppose.  That’s right – she played Robin Hood for Alaskans – taxing the oil companies and cutting checks with her name on them to the people – while claiming to be a free marketeer on the national stage.  If there was an award for creating a cash-for-votes operation, Sarah would be walking that red carpet.  Her popularity comes from the high price of oil, an oil windfall profits tax, and sending that cash to Alaskans in the form of a check.  Palin and simple.

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Myth #8:  Palin is a staunch defender of capitalism.

Fact:  Alaska is a socialist state. At least when it comes to natural resources; it turns out that the people of Alaska equally share in the ownership.  Those annual checks for citizens?  They’re the result of the people’s ownership of the oil reserves.  I’m not judging the situation, just calling it.  For Palin to call Obama a socialist is beyond irony.  Socialism means the collective ownership of the means of production.  What is more basic than the natural resources?   And in Alaska, those are owned collectively by the citizens.

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Myth # 9:  Palin has always been a “Country-First” kind of lady.

Fact:  Palin is Alaska-First and an opportunist. When she was running for Governor, Palin gave an Alaska-First rallying cry.  Lest you dismiss this as something that every State Governor would do, remember that Alaska is special.  Just ask the secessionist Alaskan Independence Party, the one in which her husband Todd held membership.  She has prominently said that “Alaska needs to protect our sovereignty.”  Choose your poison:  believe that Palin can switch allegiances faster than a RNC-bought couture jacket from Barney’s; or believe that she is being disingenuous about her “country first” message now, and still holds dear her Alaska-first belief system, evidenced by her proclivity to extract ever more money from Washington.

With the Republican ticket struggling, the different camps within the party are forming their circular firing squad.  Palin seems more focused now on establishing her own power base for her own political future than in helping the ticket or fostering Republican unity.  So I have to conclude that her radical make-over had its intended effect – Palin has increased her power because the media has not had the time or the gumption to shine the bright light of truth on the package of Palin myths that have been sold to the American people.  We can only hope that the simple power of the truth will soon catch up with her, and make this scary tale have a fairy tale ending.

Categories: Palin · Palintology · Politics
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2 responses so far ↓

  • Mike Harmon // October 30, 2008 at 11:00 pm | Reply

    I just stopped by your blog and thought I would say hello. I like your site design. Looking forward to reading more down the road.

  • h.p. jones // November 2, 2008 at 12:59 pm | Reply

    I’m part of the older generation and Sarah Palin in a place of power in our government scares the hell out of me. I beleive she is worse than Bush and I didn’t vote for him either.

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