Saturday, September 06, 2008

Sarah Palin Earmark Queen Left Wasilla $20 Million In Debt

Crooks and Liars has this new report debunking the idea that Alaska Governor and GOP VP Candidate Sarah Palin is a fiscal reformer and dislikes earmarks.  Indeed, Governor Palin took $20 million in earmarks when she was Mayor of Wasilla, Alaska.  

Here's the rest:

In 2000, Sarah Palin, as mayor of the Alaskan town of Wasilla, hired a Washington lobbyist to secure federal earmarks for her community.
This is not totally atypical in her state. Alaska’s government receives more money per capita in federal earmark money than any other state, despite being the only state in the union with no income tax and no sales tax. They fund their government primarily with petroleum money, and recently distributed oil profits to its citizens in the form of rebate checks.
But even in her heavily earmarked state, Sarah Palin was the earmark queen.
From 2000 to 2003, she secured over $27 million in earmarks, averaging $6.7 million in federal money every year for her town of about 6,700 people. …(read on)
As mayor, Sarah Palin managed to secure a thousand dollars a year per person in her city in earmarks, yet…
When Palin left office in 2002, Wasilla had “racked up nearly $20 million in long-term debt,” or roughly$3,000 of debt per resident. …(more)
Asked in 1996, her first year in office, about her ability to “effectively run” the city, Palin claimed:
“It’s not rocket science,” Palin said, “It’s $6 million and 53 employees.”

Barack Obama Takes On John McCain, Points To Lobbyists

Community Organizers Video Attacks McCain Palin Smear Of Community Organizers

Todd Harris - GOP McCain Strategist On Palin's Mistake That Could Come

Todd Harris, who was Senator John McCain's communications director, said to Chris Matthews "If she goes out and makes a mistake, that will be something that will haunt them for a long time" in response to the current (as of this writing) situation where Governor Palin has not adressed questions from the political press.

Here's the video:

It's as if they have to put training wheels on Palin or something. Yikes!

Sarah Palin Worked To Ban Books, According to Time, Other Sources

There is much buzz about how Alaska Governor Sarah Palin attempted to ban books from a library while she was mayor of Wasilla, Alaska.  While there's disagreement on which books were targeted, led by conservative blogger Michelle Malkin, there seems to be no question that Governor Palin did indeed work to block books as reported in TIME Magazine:

Stein says that as mayor, Palin continued to inject religious beliefs into her policy at times. "She asked the library how she could go about banning books," he says, because some voters thought they had inappropriate language in them. "The librarian was aghast." That woman, Mary Ellen Baker, couldn't be reached for comment, but news reports from the time show that Palin had threatened to fire Baker for not giving "full support" to the mayor.
This has become so widespread, there is a blog called "Librarians Against Palin".

OpEdNews has more to add, also pointing to Palin's call for a gag-order on city staff:

In 1996, Palin first ran for the Office of Mayor of Wasilla. According to articles in the Alaskan newspaper, The Frontiersman, Mayor Palin asked the director of the town's free public library if she "could live with censorship of library books." Palin was not specific about which books, what topics or passages would be questionable in nature.

Rindi White reports in today's edition of the Anchorage Daily News that in December of 1996, "Emmons told her hometown newspaper, the Frontiersman, that Palin three times asked her -- starting before she was sworn in -- about possibly removing objectionable books from the library if the need arose." White goes on to further state that "Emmons told the Frontiersman she flatly refused to consider any kind of censorship."
In response to the firing of Emmons, the well respected former Wasilla mayor, John Stein, told local newspapers that Palin felt some voters thought the library held inappropriate books and "asked the library how she could go about banning books," Stein further stated the head librarian, Emmons, was "aghast" at Palin's question.
"The librarian, who resisted mayoral censorship, was fired shortly after Palin took office." [CBS News]
Several of the conversations between Palin and Emmons took place within a new and very radical political environment for the small town of Wasilla, one wherein Palin, during her very first days in office, asserted her newfound authority by instituting a mandate requiring all department heads obtain her direct permission before talking with any reporter on any subject at any time.
"She put a gag order on those people, something that you'd expect to find in the big city, not here." [The Frontiersman]

And writing of The Frontiersman, I happened by that paper to read the coverage of Palin.  I found a letter from a Palmer Councilman that made no sense at all and since he's a politician "under" Palin, who's governor, I discounted it. But then I saw this letter by a simple Alaska resident, Suzanne McCausland, also of Palmer, Alaska:

John McCain is pandering. By selecting an inexperienced person, he is disrespectful for the office of the President of the United States. He is acting in a vindictive and unpatriotic way. Is he senile?
 Someday maybe Sarah will be qualified, but right now she is just too inexperienced to be a heartbeat away from the presidency of our country. Our country is in trouble. We have to act like adults, not for ourselves but for our children and grandchildren.

We have saddled them with a huge national debt, we have lost our jobs overseas, and now our very Constitution is being eroded along with our freedoms. Anyone remember that we are in a war based on a lie?

It is time to take our country back.
Shame on you, John McCain. 
Suzanne McCausland

The bottom line here is that Palin is clearly conservative and opportunistic.  Nothing wrong with ambition, but such a hunger always leaves a trail of angry people.  It's only a short matter of time before more of them come out against Palin.  The question is what did she do to gain the positions she obtained?  That's not clear.  Who was her mentor?  Who backed her?  When and Why?  More questions than answers.


Martial Law at the Republican National Convention - Video

Russia Today analyzes the situation between protesters and police in what they are calling a “police state” against the backdrop of McCain’s GOP acceptance speech.During McCain’s campaign defining speech, which has been roundly energized since the nomination of Palin, Russia was a talking point– McCain blamed Russia for invading Georgia.

read more | digg story

Sarah Palin's Other Side - A Hero To Young Alaska Girls and Women

Lost in all of the partisan arguments in this election is any real look at who the candidates are, unless we push for it.

While I don't believe Alaska Governor Sarah Palin's the best candidate and certainly not with any Senate experience, my soft spot for kids and for the advancement of women compelled me to find this side of Governor Palin: that of a hero and role model to thousands of young girls and women in Alaska, as this photo group will show.

Again, she's not the best candidate and I feel she should go back to Alaska and serve a full term as Governor, but I have to give her credit for how she impacts these girls you see in photos.

In July, McCain Promised His VP Would Appear On Larry King

Earlier today, ThinkProgress noted that since becoming Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) running mate, Gov. Sarah Palin has rarely taken questions from the press. In July, during an interview with CNN’s Larry King, McCain assured King that his running mate would appear on King’s show shorty after his announcement

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Barack Obama: Palin's Speech Had No Substance (VIDEO)

Barack Obama responded personally to Sarah Palin's harsh speech at the Republican National Convention in York, Pennsylvania. "You're hearing an awful lot about me, most of which is not true," he said. "What you're not hearing is a lot about you."

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Alaskans Speak: Sarah Palin Is “Racist, Sexist, Vindictive, And Mean”

“So Sambo beat the bitch!” This is how Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin described Barack Obama’s win over Hillary Clinton to political colleagues in a restaurant a few days after Obama locked up the Democratic Party presidential nomination. (Story needs follow up work.)

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What's Really Behind the Nation's Voting Machines

'The Typical Poll Worker' is Age: 72 | Qualifications: registered voter | Shift: 14 hours | Pay: $7/hour | Job description: Computer-savvy people-person with stamina for long hours and stressful work environment. | Training: Two hours | Absenteeism: 33 percent | Workforce: 2 million at more than 180,000 polling places

read more | digg story

Jobless Rates Soar-Employers Trim Jobs For 8 Months In A Row

The unemployment rate soared to a nearly five-year high in August, topping 6 percent. The unemployment rate at 6.1% is up from 5.7% in July and 4.7% a year ago.

read more | digg story

Twitter,Hot News Feed, Pownce, New World Of Intimacy

Hot News Feed, Twitter and other forms of incessant online contact have created a brave new world of ambient intimacy by allowing instant communications and connectivity.

read more | digg story

Institutional Racism Found In Schools

Researchers have uncovered evidence that teachers are routinely under-estimating the abilities of some black pupils, suggesting that assumptions about behavioural problems are overshadowing their academic talents.

read more | digg story



Check this out by Media Matters...

Summary: On September 2 and September 3, MSNBC, CNN, and Fox News each dedicated more on-air time -- significantly more in most cases -- to official Republican convention programming during the most-watched portions of their coverage than each channel dedicated to official convention programming during the same times on comparable nights of the Democratic National Convention.
Findings for Tuesday, September 2, coverage of the Republican National Convention and Monday, August 25, and Tuesday, August 26, coverage of the Democratic National Convention are as follows:
  • MSNBC dedicated 1 hour, 19 minutes, 52 seconds to scheduled convention programming during the 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET hours of its September 2 Republican National Convention coverage; by contrast, MSNBC dedicated 56 minutes, 13 seconds to scheduled convention programming during the same hours during its August 25 coverage of the Democratic National Convention, and 59 minutes, 28 seconds during its August 26 coverage.
  • CNN dedicated 1 hour, 23 minutes, 36 seconds to scheduled convention programming during the 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET hours of its September 2 Republican National Convention coverage; by contrast, CNN dedicated 1 hour, 3 minutes, 58 seconds to scheduled convention programming during the same hours during its August 25 coverage of the Democratic National Convention, and 1 hour, 10 minutes, 45 seconds during its August 26 coverage.
  • Fox News dedicated 1 hour, 16 minutes, 30 seconds to scheduled convention programming, including convention speeches, during the 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET hours of its September 2 Republican National Convention coverage; by contrast, Fox News dedicated 56 minutes, 25 seconds to scheduled convention programming during the same hours during its August 25 coverage of the Democratic National Convention, and 38 minutes, 51 seconds during its August 26 coverage.

It means the convention coverage was fixed to counter the ratings that Obama got the week before.  The networks -- MSNBC, CNN, and FOX -- worked to fix coverage to draw more ratings for the Republicans.

 THIS IS AN OUTRAGE!   IS NOTHING SACRED?  The networks are in the tank for the Republican Party.

Fight them.  Fight the Republican Party, too.