Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Dave Weigel and Sarah Palin's "pregnancy": Believing what I want to believe - UPDATE

Wild ride word salad pic
Sarah Palin's "wild ride word salad" from April 22, 2008 -

Dave Weigel is already well known to the readers of Palingates, as we had a little run-in with him in April (see also HERE), after he appeared on Olbermann and talked about the "perjury story". Dave Weigel recently, with great media attention, left the Washington Post and moved to MSNBC as a contributor. He has written critically about Sarah Palin in the past and is certainly not a Palin-supporter, but it is very interesting to read what Andrew Barr remarked in Politico about Dave Weigel in an article titled "David Weigel sympathizes with Sarah Palin" just a few days ago:

After losing his job over leaked e-mails that showed him trashing the conservatives he covers, former Washington Post blogger David Weigel says he has “new sympathy” for former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Palin, Weigel writes in the latest issue of Esquire, is not someone he “pretended to admire much.”

But after getting chewed up and spit out over his critical e-mails, Weigel says that he can understand Palin’s mistrust of the media.

“A political celebrity who raises money and appears on TV needs the media in a way that a reporter doesn't,” Weigel writes. “But damn if I didn't feel sorry for the way every utterance Palin ever makes is taffy-pulled and inspected for lies.”

“This is, obviously, a weird place to be,” Weigel continues.

The former Washington Post blogger who is now a contributor to MSNBC said that his experience has likely changed the way he will report stories, because he now understands what it is like to be on the other end.

“I can't imagine ever again writing about someone without manning up to get him or her to comment, or provide more context,” Weigel wrote. “I realized that no one could take the same scrutiny and walk away looking saintly.”

Believing Sarah Palin

It seems that Dave Weigel saw an opportunity to show his new sympathy for Sarah Palin in public in greater detail. While Andrew Sullivan is on holiday, he wrote as a guest contributor on the Daily Dish a forceful rebuttal of "Trig Trutherism" titled "Believing Sarah Palin". Certainly, a major reason for his article is that Dave Weigel received twitter messages, asking him for example how he could associate himself with "crackpot" Andrew Sullivan.

Therefore, as someone who is involved in solving the puzzle regarding the circumstances of Sarah Palin's "pregnancy" with Trig, I feel compelled to answer Dave Weigel.

Dave Weigel tells the readers where he doesn't agree with Andrew Sullivan:

"There are two levels of criticism, both of starting with the assumption that by agreeing to blog in this space I am tacitly endorsing everything that usually appears in this space. One is that Andrew Sullivan is wrong and spreading misinformation about the birth of Trig Palin in 2008. The other is that Sullivan is wrong about Israel. I'm in Alaska and the subject of the Palins comes up frequently enough here, so let me just deal with the first criticism. Trig Palin is Sarah Palin's son and it's irresponsible to suggest otherwise."

So Andrew Sullivan is spreading "misinformation about the birth of Trig". Where exactly, in which article about Trig has Andrew Sullivan misinformed his readers? Dave Weigel doesn't think it's necessary to point us to the relevant excerpts, and there is a reason: He couldn't find them. All Andrew Sullivan has ever done regarding the "Trig questions" is to ask questions in a very careful, but insisting, detailed and logical way, for example here, here, here, here and here.

However, in Dave Weigel's view, it's "misinformation", and it's "irresponsible". Why? Has Dave Weigel ever looked at the facts of the case? Did he ever get in contact with people who are actually researching the subject? I doubt it very much. Paradoxically, this is exactly the same mediocre standard of reporting that Andrew Sullivan himself has always criticized and which seems to drive him crazy.

Andrew Sullivan wrote on June 28, 2010:

"But in many ways, my real frustration here is not with Palin, who has behaved in ways that are rational for a gambler of such proportions. My frustration is with the media who have never questioned, let alone seriously investigated, the story, and who have actually gone further and vouched for its truthfulness and accuracy without any independent confirmation."

Dave Weigel seems unimpressed by those arguments and paints a different picture:

"Trig Trutherism" is less serious. Were Sarah Palin to become president and everything the Trig Truthers believed to be proven right, it wouldn't matter at all. But they won't be proven right. All of the evidence indicates that Trig Palin is Sarah's son, and none of it suggests otherwise. I paid close enough attention to this in 2008, and realized pretty quickly that the countervailing theories made no sense. Too many people watched Palin announce the pregnancy and saw her come along until she went into labor, prematurely, while attending a National Governors Association event in Texas. Here in Alaska, people tell me that Palin fans (who at one point made up 85-90% of Alaskans) held "baby showers" for her, and she'd drop in to thank them.

So Dave Weigel claims that he paid close attention to this subject in 2008. This might be true - but he seems to have missed the fact that A LOT has changed since then. People started to research the pregnancy in autumn 2008, and we are now much, much further advanced in our knowledge about the circumstances than we were then. And yes, we HAVE received valuable inside info from Alaska, and in fact we still are. We have known for a long time with absolute certainty that the pregnancy was faked - and that we can write about it with impunity. A good part of the facts which were collected since 2008 can be found in our recently published summary document.

It's not difficult to refute the assertions of Dave Weigel. There is virtually NO evidence that Trig is Sarah Palin's biological son - and that's what we are pointing out: That he is not her BIOLOGICAL son, that her birth story is a lie, fabricated to appeal to the evangelical right and the pro-life movement. He can very well be her adopted son, but Sarah Palin did not give birth to Trig.

Why did the media conclude in 2008 that Palin had given birth to Trig? The most striking piece of evidence for this assertion is a picture taken on April 13, 2008, showing Palin in the Capitol Building in Juneau in the late afternoon while she was being interviewed by KTVA reporter Andrea Gusty. This picture suddenly appeared on Flickr on August 31, 2008, the day Palin's nomination was announced. This picture was in 2008 evidence enough for virtually everyone who didn't want to believe the fake pregnancy claims - including for example, who were so smitten by the picture that they ruled out any scenario other than a "real" birth. The flickr account on which this picture was published in August 31, 2008 was deleted several months ago.

Apart from that, there is virtually no evidence for the fact that Sarah Palin gave birth to Trig. We have never found any hard evidence, as closely as we looked! No documentation, no birth records, no witnesses, nothing.

However, what we DID find is a "mountain" of circumstancial evidence that points extremely strongly to the fact that the pregnancy was faked. In combination with valuable inside info from Alaska, a pretty clear picture slowly started to emerge.

Dave Weigel, however, seems to have not noticed the details which the "Trig Truthers" have published since 2008, because even a quick examination of his claims don't hold up against the growing mountain of evidence that suggests that she was never pregnant with Trig.

Dave Weigel writes on the Daily Dish:

"Too many people watched Palin announce the pregnancy and saw her come along until she went into labor, prematurely, while attending a National Governors Association event in Texas. Here in Alaska, people tell me that Palin fans (who at one point made up 85-90% of Alaskans) held "baby showers" for her, and she'd drop in to thank them."

Dave, I am surprised by your claims! To our best knowledge, Sarah Palin announced her pregnancy when she was supposedly seven months pregnant, on March 5, 2008. No one on her staff knew about it in advance. Yes, people saw her when she announced the pregnancy, and the Anchorage Daily News felt compelled to remark:

"That the pregnancy is so advanced astonished all who heard the news. The governor, a runner who's always been trim, simply doesn't look pregnant."

I had a phone conversation with former Alaska State Senate President Lyda Green in September 2009, who was in the same room with Sarah Palin on March 5, 2008, when she announced her pregnancy. She told me straight away that Palin did not look pregnant on that day. She also confirmed for example that the rumors that Bristol was pregnant already existed in Juneau around December 2007.

I subsequently had contact to other people who saw Palin even in April 2008 from very close who also observed that she didn't look pregnant.

Through inside sources we later learned that Bristol was indeed pregnant in 2007.

We know only of two baby shower, one of which was given by Sarah's best friend Kristan Cole - but that was only after Trig's official birth, on May 4, 2008 (see pictures here).

Who noticed that Sarah Palin was in labor on April 17, 2008?

The staff of Alaska Airlines certainly didn't notice it.

Lastly, did Cathy Baldwin-Johnson, who supposedly delivered Trig and who supposedly was in contact with her over the phone know that Palin was in labor on April 17, 2008? Apparently not, according to the ADN:

"Things were already settling down when she talked to me," Baldwin-Johnson said. Palin did not ask for a medical OK to fly, the doctor said.
As far as Cathy Baldwin-Johnson is concerned, Sarah Palin wasn't in labor, but in "Going Rogue" Sarah mentions that she had "big contractions" during her speech but still decided to head back to Alaska on a long plane journey. How can this be reconciled with each other?

So, Dave, I ask you: Who HAS seen Palin when she was in labor? We are still waiting for somebody to come forward.

Do I even need to mention that Palin completely changed her story about the "wild ride" later which she first told in a press conference on April 22, 2008? In "Going Rogue", you will find no mention any more that her water had broken - on April 22, 2008, she described the events completely differently and explicitly said that her water had broken.

Dave, if you accept that Sarah Palin was pregnant with Trig during the "wild ride" from Texas to Alaska on April 17, 2008, why has nobody in the mainstream media confronted her with the fact that she was putting her premature child, afflicted by down syndrome and a heart condition at great risk, just so that he could be a "fishpicker from Alaska"?

At no time when she was in Texas did Sarah seek any medical advice. When Sarah Palin landed in Anchorage, she was just minutes away from a hospital with a NICU, but according to her story she chose to continue her journey and to drive to Wasilla to a small local hospital which isn't certified to deal with such kind of emergencies to deliver her child. Does this part of the story make sense to you? Because it certainly doesn't to us. Isn't that exactly what Andrew Sullivan is doing, asking these questions, without receiving a reply?

Finally, Dave Weigel writes:

"Obsessing over Trig, as much as it annoys the Palins -- and I see why it does -- is one of the best ways of propping her up. It gives her fan base proof that its hero is constantly battling unfair personal attacks that the media won't debunk. It convinces them that critics focus on this nonsense because they've got nothing else to criticize Palin about. She has taken advantage of this impression."

Dave, let me tell you: This story is NOT working for Sarah Palin. The truth will come out in the end, and Palin's credibility will be destroyed. There is no way she will be able to spin this one.

When you write at the end that Andrew Sullivan's articles about this matter have "damaged his reputation" , all I will say is that we should patiently wait until the full facts are revealed - and then it's up for others to decide who misjudged the situation.

The truth will be revealed in the end.

To finish this post on a lighter note, I would like to ask Dave Weigel: Please prove us wrong and ask Sarah Palin for proof that she has given birth to Trig - the editor of the Anchorage Daily News, Pat Dougherty, did the same in early 2009 and only received angry answers from Sarah Palin in response and no other cooperation (see also here for more background). Now, where you have openly declared that you believe Sarah, surely she will use this opportunity to prove us wrong and destroy the credibility of the Trig Truthers and the other doubters once and for all?

You will find the phone number of SarahPAC on their website, if that helps.


In addition:



Dave Weigel posted a new article on the Daily Dish about the "Trig question" and he is not happy about the responses to his "Believing Sarah Palin" article. He again compares us with the Obama-birthers, doesn't seem to understand what all the fuss is about, and he even thinks that Sarah Palin's "anger" that people like that Anchorage Daily News kept on asking questions about the pregnancy is "understandable"!

He also explains that he has sources in Alaska:

"And among the people who told me that Alaskans were well aware of Palin's pregnancy were Shannyn Moore, an award-winning and left-leaning political radio host who has been roundly attacked by Palin fans."

"Well aware" BEFORE Palin announced her pregnancy on March 5, 2008? Sarah Palin didn't even tell her own family or her own staff!

Dave Weigel still hasn't got his facts straight, and frankly, I think he has no interest whatsoever to look at the real facts. Welcome to US journalism in the 21st century. Misinformed pundits who don't properly research their stories and MSM fluff-stories are the future.



Dave Weigel is in Alaska - but the news about the Levi/Bristol engagement supposedly does not interest him:

Dave Weigel twitter message - Leave her family alone

Leave her family alone?? Dave!!! They have sold the story to US Weekly, probably for their standard charge of $ 100,000!

How much hypocrisy can there be? For God's sake!

Levi & Bristol US Weekly cover

Dave, the more I think about it, the more I actually believe that you shouldn't talk about the Palins at all. Maybe that would be the best for everyone involved.

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