Friday, September 5, 2008

Micheal Barone and the Hypocrisy of the Right

This week,Michael Barone published an article about Sarah Palin's speech under the adoring headline "A Star is Born in the GOP.". He discusses the various strengths of her speech before the GOP and concludes:

Who wants to say Sarah Palin is a lightweight now?

And I answer ME! I want to say Sarah Palin is a lightweight. Also, I want to say...WHAT! Michael Barone and the right wing establishment who have long argued that Obama cannot be taken seriously because he his "only" credit was being a skilled orator are now seeking to make Sarah Palin a heavy weight because she gave a good speech. Spare me.

Two years ago, Sarah Palin was campaigning for the governorship of Alaska, a state drowning in oil money, which she has thus far done a decent job of governing, did I say it's drowning in oil money? Because it is.

From an article in The New Republic:
When it comes down to it, the state of Alaska has received more than $10 billion this year from oil revenue. Thanks to the addition of these new taxes (on top of the taxes already in place), that is double the amount it received the year before. Now the government's biggest problem ... trying to figure out how to spend the money.

Did I mention that these cities are all bigger than the population of the state of Alaska? (which is known in the McCain campaign as "the largest state in the Union")

– New York, NY

– Los Angeles, CA

– Chicago, IL

– Houston, TX

– Phoenix, AZ

– Philadelphia, PA

– San Antonio, TX

– San Diego, CA

– Dallas, TX

– San Jose, CA

– Detroit, MI

– Jacksonville, FL

– Indianapolis, IN

– San Francisco, CA

– Columbus, OH

– Austin, TX

Her significant experience prior to that point was being the mayor of Wasilla, Alaska (population 7,025). Which received a deluge of federal dollars, which allowed Sarah Palin to lead that small city town. This type of work has not given Sarah Palin any experience that is useful for being Vice-President.

In between being mayor and being governor, Palin's biggest achievement was resigning 11 months into her time being chairwoman of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. While the resignation was ethical, and seems to have been the right choice, those 11 months don't seem to fill in her resume very much.

Even the experience she has is not impressive. As I stated before, both of her leadership situations were when the state was flush with cash, a situation that the United States is not experiencing and probably won't experience soon. Further the Detroit Free Press on the various experiences she had while in state and local government. I recommend the full article, but you can check out the highlights here.

As Mayor, Palin sought to censor books in the local library:

Many publications have reported an incident early in her tenure when she asked the library director about censoring books in the library's collection. The town’s Frontiersman newspaper said Palin didn't ask about specific books. "I told her clearly, I will fight anyone who tries to dictate what books can go on the library shelves," library director Mary Ellen Emmons told the paper at the time.

She also sought letters of resignation from all staff as a "loyalty test" and fired many people for "giving their full support":
Palin early in her tenure did fire Wasilla’s police chief, the finance director, city planner and other department heads. "I do not feel I have your full support in my efforts to govern the City of Wasilla," the Journal reported that she wrote to Irl Stambaugh, the police chief. Palin told the Anchorage Daily News then that the letters sent to department heads were just a test of loyalty as she took on the mayor’s job.

As Governor (in the past 20 monts), she is being investigated for trying to fire her ex-brother-in-law:
Palin is under investigation by the Legislature over the dismissal of the state’s public safety commissioner, Walt Monegan, who alleges he was pressured to fire her ex-brother-in-law from his state trooper job. Palin denies pressuring Monegan. The state police union says it will file a complaint against her regarding the disclosure of the trooper’s private information.

and has taken credit for a series of Democratic ethics reforms:
After Palin’s speech Wednesday, the Anchorage Daily News noted: “She mentioned leading the charge for ethics reform, but didn’t note that Alaska’s new ethics laws drew heavily on work Democrats had done before she took office.”

This is the woman, who you are claiming is a heavy-weight? Ha. Call me when she has more than a good speech.

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