Monday, 6 December 2010

Sarah Palin's Alaska, episode 4: A reader's review - Sarah goes for the kill - but, but...Walmart is just around the corner! - UPDATE

By Leadfoot_LA and Bella, age 7

I have been away all weekend working at an event in Hollywood, so I haven't read any comments for 3 days. But I did read the posts on my phone, so before we begin tonight's episode of Sarah's Best Impersonation of Sanity, I was aware of the controversy surrounding her lack of a hunting license. I told myself that surely the producers wouldn't actually let her shoot a hunting rifle on camera if she isn't properly licensed. Then I went to my DVR to pull up the episode and noticed the title -- "She's a great shot." Oh lordy. Maybe Mark Burnett does hate her!

We kick off with Sarah saying that most Alaskans hunt, and "that rifle in your hand can mean food on your table." Um, yah, maybe if this were like 1875.

Sarah, Creepy Chuck "the kids are always losing their underwear" Heath and Becker sit in some brush with large guns and eat wild blueberries while they survey the horizon. A caribou wanders over the hilltop and Sarah puts her gun to her shoulder. "Dad, does it kick?" she asks. When he says no, she says, "he always says that." Creepy Chuck tells her to "shoot it right in the middle of the chest." Bella gasps loudly in horror. I tell her she doesn't have to watch this part. But she says, "No, mom, the Internet people want to know what I think." Sarah takes aim, but then Creepy Chuck says "something's not right here" and we cut to black, then.....Three Days Earlier. Bella exhales with relief.

Back at the Palin home (someone please tell me why their ENTIRE front yard is concrete!), Sarah says "you forgot one thing, Piper. Your spelling test is today." Then she completely drops it and starts talking about going hunting with her dad, so Piper has to go stay with Molly in Fairbanks for a few days. In our house that conversation always goes more like this: "Bella! I forgot that your spelling test is tomorrow! Let's study the words!" But Sarah makes it Piper's fault, and then doesn't help her study.

Sarah wants to continue the tradition of hunting and fishing with her family. She explains that "in many remote areas of Alaska, especially native communities, there are no grocery stores nearby -- they are 4 or 500 miles away." So "you harvest the wildlife and you put it in your freezer and you live off that through the winter." But Sarah is neither living in a remote part of Alaska or a native community. Plus, I wonder, if these people were able to get to a Sears to get a freezer, why couldn't they also make the drive to stock it with food?!

Oh, now Sarah decides to help Piper with spelling words! She helps with exactly ONE word ("migrating"), before she stands up, puts on her fuzzy camouflage jacket monogrammed with an "S," and walks away. This year Sarah and Todd have decided to "split the hunting and gathering responsibilities." Todd is going hunting for moose with his brother, while Sarah is going hunting for Caribou with her dad, who at 72, has more stamina and perseverance than anybody else that she knows. Was that a dig at McCain?

Now we head to the Heath House of Horrors. Before we even get inside, there are animal parts hanging all over the exterior to creep me out. I count 5 pairs of antlers above the garage. Inside there are more dead animals on the walls than I can count. I see some sort of cute little furry muskrat looking thing, a ram, a caribou, a cougar, a bird of some sort. Creepy Chuck is checking off his list and wants to make sure he packs his "Bug Dope." Your guess is as good as mine. There is a sign on the door behind him that says "slam shut." Odd.

He is so excited that he couldn't sleep. He feels like a kid in a candy store. Is it just me, or is there something terribly wrong with that?! If I were going out to shoot and kill large wild animals, I would feel nervous and a bit sick -- not excited! Becker pulls up in a big white truck and holy crap -- is that an antler MOUNTAIN in the yard?! Why, yes, yes it is. I hope Bella does not notice it, and fortunately, she doesn't. A McCain-Palin poster and "Palin for Governor" sign hang in the Heath garage. Creepy Chuck says he gets to go hunting this year with his "daughter Sarah Palin" (WTF?!) and his friend Steve Becker. Becker is a real "kick in the rear end." What does that even mean?

Creepy Chuck wants to go over the list and make sure they have all the guns. Everywhere we turn in this house, there are new pelts, hides, stuffed heads and bones to behold. They are a taking the men's guns and a "varmint" gun for Sarah, because she prefers to shoot that. Becker says "What are all these skulls" as he points to 14 skulls on a shelf. They are a 2 bears, 2 wolves, a coyote, a cougar, a wolverine, 2 seals, 2 lynx, a fox, a martin and a weasel. He then turns to a shelf full of smaller skulls and legs (from geese, ducks, "a little bit of everything.") He says he "shows them at school." Is he still a teacher? At 72? Bella says she would be scared to sleep in that house. I agree!

They take the Heath's big black truck to Sarah's house. Creepy Chuck asks her if she has her trigger finger warmed up. Is that the one she sticks into Trig's face all the time?! Tee hee. Then he says "everything Sarah Palin does, she does with all four feet, let me tell ya." WHAT? She has only two feet, to my knowledge. Did he just call her a bitch? He then refers to her as Sarah Palin for the third time before they leave. I don't think my Dad has ever referred to me using both my names, and Creepy Chuck has done it 3 times in 8 minutes.

Sarah opens her freezer, which has more meat in it than mine has ever had, and says "here is the dill," they are down to just moose pepperoni, caribou sausage, some buffalo, 5 moose packages and 3 caribou packages. It is that time of year when winter is going to be just right around the corner (um, wasn't it July?) and you are going to be looking for food for your kids' "mills." She means "meals."

Sarah and Becker bet $1 for the first dead animal, and $5 for the biggest one. The truck has a bumper sticker that says "Vegetarian -- old Indian word for poor hunter." I would so much rather be a poor hunter who eats healthy vegetables than have a freezer full of moose pepperoni. They take a plane to Kavik, above the Arctic Circle. It is a river camp with the population of 1 -- Sue, the camp manager, who has a man voice. She says "some women want perfume and diamonds" but she wants "blood, guts and bullets." Sue and I would not be friends. Sarah knows Sue because she has interviewed her for Fox News.

A few years back, Sue was attacked by a bear, and had to sew her own head back together, then had to lay there for 10 days until a pilot found her. Sue, I'm sorry that happened to you, but don't live alone in the middle of freaking nowhere!!

They have to take another plane, a Piper (after which Piper was named), to get to the hunting spot. It is so small that only one person can be flown in at a time. The pilot leaves and says to call his satellite phone if anything happens. They pitch tents, and decide to keep a gun in each tent in case of bears. Sarah sleeps alone in one tent, and Becker and Creepy Chuck sleep in the other.

They walk around and look for animals with binoculars. Sarah says that, "the animal has the advantage, that is, until we have the bullet in the chamber." She has glee in her voice when she says it. Bella looks at me with a half-afraid, half what-the-hell expression.

They walk 4 miles and spot 2 caribou. They take off towards them and Creepy Chuck falls flat on his face. With a gun in his hand. Commercial. I have never wanted a commercial break less!!

Ok, he is fine. They have to cross a river that Sarah says is "frickin freezing cold," and says that her feet will be wrinkled and blistered by the end of the day. Sounds super fun. But these experiences have created within her "a desire to be tough, self sufficient and independent." Funny, I think Bella and I both have those traits and don't have to trek around killing things to have them.

Uh-oh --- they see a wolf track in the mud. Creepy Chuck says "it is big enough to take you down," but forgets that they have big guns in their hands. They can't find the caribou, so they head back to camp. "They are laughing at us," he says. No, that is us.

They begin to prepare a dinner of Spam, when Becker sees a Caribou near camp. Sarah's boots are water logged, so she stays behind with her dad while Becker goes to get it. He walks back to camp with giant bloody antlers on his back. Sarah says she is jealous and that he will "get his flippin' dollar." Becker reminds her that it is also the biggest so far, she she owes him $6. This "ticks her off" because she doesn't like to lose a bet. Bella asks how they will get those antlers back in that tiny plane. Very good question! I wonder how the meat won't spoil while it sits there the entire next day and how they will get the giant caribou back if the plane only holds one person. None of it makes sense.

The next day, Sarah wears full makeup and a hat that says "girls with guns" and they head out again to hunt. Creepy Chuck tells a dumb story about a "Hillbilly" he hunted with once. They come to the blueberries and we are back to the scene where we began. Sarah shoots and misses. Again. A third time. A fourth time. I look at Bella and she is holding her breath. Sarah shoots and misses again. She decides to use Becker's gun and hits the Caribou. Bella starts to cry and I feel horrible for letting her watch this travesty.

Sarah says she feels a "great feeling of accomplishment." I want to punch her in the nose. I promise Bella I will never purposely kill an animal and she promises me the same. I wonder how someone who claims to be so religious can be okay with shooting God's creatures for sport. She again says that it will sustain her family. I lose it. I yell, "Sarah, you dumbass, you can sustain your family by hopping in your giant SUV, driving it down the street, and filling it up with some groceries purchased with your $20 million dollars." Bella dries her tears. Sarah "feels a lot better now." I guess I do too after my outburst and my pinky promise with Bella.

Next they "quarter" the Caribou. Apparently this means cutting off its limbs and cutting the meat off the ribs. I send Bella out of the room. I tell her to go watch a movie upstairs. This is just too much. Why did we get a "viewer discretion advised" warning for clubbing halibut, but not for this?! There is blood everywhere. They carry the meat out in the a bloody bag and leave behind the carcass. I seriously want to vomit.

Sarah tells Creepy Chuck that his gun is "off" and he says "you're off" to Sarah. HAHA. Oh wow, I actually agree with him. Sarah flies back first, leaving the old guys to pack up the gear. Her dad thanks her for coming with him, takes her picture, and looks kind of sad as she flies away.

Back at camp, Sue tells Sarah that "the Tundra will make a man out of anybody." Yep, worked on Sue. She says she hates to say goodbye and Sarah says, "I know, we don't like feelings either." OBVIOUSLY, you just murdered an animal!! Sue cries when they leave.

Back at Sarah's home in Wasilla, she holds Trig for 3 seconds before handing him off to Piper. He is wearing a jacket, socks AND shoes. Looks like Sally knows how to dress the kid! Sarah shows Piper her caribou horns and says "Come ON! Be impressed." Piper looks as disgusted as I feel.

WHAT. THE. HELL. Sarah says her garage will act as the meat processing plant. Creepy Chuck says, "Hey Piper, you wanna see the heart?" and holds it out towards her. She says it reeks.

Sarah says that she took her caribou out of a herd of 120,000 and that they "manage their wildlife for abundance and sustainability." Maybe it's just me, because I live in the middle of Los Angeles, but it seems like if you really wanted to sustain wildlife, you wouldn't kill any of it. Piper is now cutting up meat. I gag. They freeze the meat and Sarah talks about how her dad taught her to be productive, contibute and work. What this has to do with her next statement, I'm not sure. "If you wanna have organic food, you are going to have to go out there and hunt yourself and fill up your freezer." Or you could just go to the farmer's market, or Whole Foods.

The episode comes to an end. Please, please, please let her get arrested for hunting without a license. (Do they arrest people for that? They should. Somebody call Wooten.)

Next week: Sarah goes camping with Kate Gosselin.

Disclaimer: I am well aware that my personal beliefs colored this review, and if I offended anyone, I apologize. Bella and I have the good fortune of living near a wonderful Whole Foods and a Trader Joes, both full of fresh, organic, locally produced foods. I realize that not everyone has this same opportunity. We do occasionally eat meat, but only at restaurants, as I refuse to prepare meat at home. Touching and smelling raw meat makes me nauseous. I grew up in Ohio, and my dad hunted deer. I remember seeing deer hanging in the back yard when I was young, and even then I felt in my heart that killing animals for sport was wrong. Even if you end up consuming the meat, which I refused to do from about age 9 on. I know that not everyone shares that view, so I just wanted to let you all know my perspective. This was a very hard episode for me to get through.


By Patrick:

Leadfoot and Bella, thank you so much again for this review! This really was a tough one.

In case some of our readers who haven't seen the episode would like to see the "gory" details as well, here we go:

The Gaters had a lot of fun in our public chat again during the program! There were apparently up to 55 people online at the same time! Wow! :-)

Our readers sleuth again captured most of the chat, and it's really very entertaining to read, don't miss it! The transcript of the chat can be downloaded HERE.

The Frum Forum also posted a funny live blog of this episode.

OK, so Sarah Palin does live in the "wilderness" in Alaska and has to hunt for food, right?

Let's make the "Palingates reality check!"

As the whole world knows, Sarah Palin's address in Wasilla is "1140 West Parks Highway."

How many supermarkets are very, very close to Sarah Palin's home?

Google maps knows the answer:

Supermarkets close to Sarah Palin

That would be at least seven!

How long does it take for example for Sarah Palin to drive from her house to Walmart?


Sarah Palin - Walmart

Oh, I think this poor Caribou just died in vain! It was looking forward to a long and happy life, but then it had the misfortune to meet the Quitter Queen who had to prove to the world that she is a real killer and shows the middle finger to "anti-hunting hypocrites."


So what else happened today?

I already mentioned recently that the brilliant Tina Dupuy (who sometimes co-hosts "The Young Turks") decided to start to write "Sarah Palin's enemy list."

Tina today posted a video, talking about the response she received:

By the way, I successfully lobbied to get Andrew Halcro on the list! ;-)

Watch Andrew Halcro, who is probably the most intelligent politician in Alaska these days, reciting from "Going Rogue!"

I almost forgot to mention:

There was recently a lot of speculation about Sarah Palin's hunting license.

One of our readers from Alaska researched the subject and actually got in touch with the departments which are involved.

This is the result:

2006 - SP had a combo sport fishing/hunting license and a resident commercial crew license

2007 - SP had a combo sport fishing/hunting license and a resident commercial crew license

2008 - No record of a sport fishing, hunting or commercial crew license

2009 - No record of a sport fishing or hunting license. SP had a resident commercial crew license

2010 - SP has a combo sport fishing/hunting license (purchased on 7/2/2010) She has a full year commercial crew license (purchased on 6/30/2010)

Both Willow and Bristol have 2010 sport and commercial crew licenses.

Todd has had all licenses between 2006-2010

Therefore, Sarah Palin purchased a hunting license on July 2, 2010, just in time for the filming of her (alternate) reality show, after she had no license in 2008 and 2009. Oh no, was her fridge empty in 2008 and 2009? Did her children starve?


More news from today:

Politico reported that according to a new poll, Americans don't trust Sarah Palin on the abortion issue.

Most American women don't trust Mama Grizzly on abortion, birth control and sex ed, a new poll obtained by POLITICO shows.

The survey, conducted for Planned Parenthood by Democratic pollster Hart Research Associates, found that just 24 percent of registered voters choose Sarah Palin as trustworthy on women’s health issues, versus 54 percent who consider Planned Parenthood trustworthy.

Forty-three percent of all registered voters polled described Palin as “out of step” with their views on the issues; 31 percent say she is in line with their beliefs.

The poll reached 802 voters split evenly across party lines in early November and has a margin of error of 3.5 percent.

The trust question showed a clear problem for Palin among women voters. Researchers asked, “Whom do you trust more to represent your views on women’s health issues?” For all women voters, the tally was 58 percent trusting Planned Parenthood, 22 percent trusting Palin. The trust gap was even starker among independent women: Only 12 percent of that crucial swing demographic trusted Palin more on women's health.

I wonder why that is?

Let's take a look at this clip, and make sure to watch it until the end:

That's it for today, dear Gaters!

Well, almost:

Our Palingates Moneyblast continues to be very successful! We are incredibly grateful for your support! The current balance now is at $ 4,058,50!

Palingates Moneyblast banner

We are also incredibly grateful that our dear reader Ennealogic, one of our favourite bloggers (who, by the way, also left the VERY FIRST COMMENT BY A READER EVER ON PALINGATES ON FEBRUARY 2, 2009) has "thrown down a gauntlet to the readers":

Moneyblast Incentive

Inspired by drpatois' recent offer of matching funds, I'd like to offer for one day only, tomorrow, Tuesday, the next to the last day of the Palingates Moneyblast, another chance to get your contribution doubled!

Whatever you can contribute at any time during the day tomorrow, tomorrow only, up to $500 (US) I will match. I've spoken with Patrick and he'll keep track. Mailing it in? Just send him an e-mail letting him know so it will count. Paypal comes with dates and times, so whatever your time zone, just do it.

If you are financially strapped - please know that sending your good will and good wishes and commenting now and again is also a wonderful way to contribute, too, also, you betcha! But if you can shake loose a few bucks, it will be magically be doubled! So on your mark, get ready... !!

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A second clip of Palin shooting the caribou was also posted on the internet, and together with the first clip posted above provides a much better picture of what (apparently) happened, how she misses the animal several times. I say "apparently", because this whole scene just looks dodgy, and I really would like to see the unedited, uncut version. But as we are not even gonna see Trig's birth certificate, it's certainly too much to hope for. I don't really know anything about how to handle a gun, but I think we can all agree that Sarah is a fake hunter, as demonstrated for example in this post (click), as well as fake pregnant mother. ;-)

So, how is it possible to make a parody of this fake mess?

Well, amazingly, already in MARCH 2010, a PRETTY PERFECT parody was posted on youtube, before the filming of Sarah's show even started!

And then there is the one and only Stephen Colbert. This clip is from November 16, and I missed it so far. You HAVE to watch it until the end:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Stephen Colbert's Report
Colbert Report Full Episodes2010 ElectionMarch to Keep Fear Alive

By the way, if we want take a quick peek into the "unedited" reality again, we should watch this clip of Sarah Palin shooting a training rifle in July 2007 in Kuwait. Well, that's what I imagine somebody looks like who hasn't got a clue how to shoot...correct me if I am wrong.



Phil Munger from Progressive Alaska, who, as most of you will know, lives in Palmer next to Wasilla, left a very interesting comment on Palingates regarding Chuck Heath a few hours ago.

Here we go:

Watching the hunting clip, at first I thought it likely that Sarah herself had not shot the caribou - someone else had. But watching it twice it seems from Chuck's almost creaming his jeans over the shot that she did indeed down the animal herself.

I've never hunted with Chuck, but fished with him or by him several times. The only time I've ever seen him get that excited was when my daughter and I were catching a large amount of Sockeye and Coho salmon (26 in 45 minutes) at a spot he often enjoyed himself. Where he and Sally were (there were only our canoe and theirs at the spot at the time), they weren't catching anything. As we continued to catch as many fish as we could handle, he got both excited and pissed. Excited that the fish were in, and pissed that he and Sally weren't getting them.

He edged his canoe up very close to ours, but we were right on top of the hole the fish seemed to be going through on their way along the shore's edge. He said something like "I usually fish there."

I replied with something like "You do. We're almost done. We've almost limited out."

He wouldn't leave me alone, and kept getting excited as we landed more salmon. He kept on trying to talk me into letting him have what he thought was his rightful place. Julia, my daughter was disappointed, as she had never seen this side of Chuck, who was her favorite substitute teacher at Colony Middle School.

We soon had our limit (26 for the day, 55 total) and gave up the spot. The fish were gone. I think he and Sal ended up with two or three, if that.

When he and Sally came by us as we cleaned our fish upstream in clear water, they didn't say a word as they glumly pulled their canoe by us. It was my first glimpse of that side of Chuck Heath.

The way those people handled their weapons in the hunting segment was irresponsible. Like their disregard for safety when in boats. They've been lucky.

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