Saturday, 27 February 2010

Sarah Palin doesn't believe in coincidences - Who are the "15 new oil & gas explorers" who received $ 193 million from the State of AK in July 2009?

Sarah Palin doesn't believe in coincidences. She wrote these words in Going Rogue and repeated them in her speech at College of the Ozarks in Missouri.

Starting from the premise that there are no coincidences in Sarah Palin's world, let's have a good look at the following "coincidences", researched by our good friend EyeOnYou, helped by AustinTxx.

After her trip to New York state in June 2009, Sarah Palin stopped in Dallas and Giddings, Texas.

She tweeted extensively while there:

Info on today's announcement re: deal reached by TransCanada & ExxonMobil thru AGIA. Historic deal & day in AK & US energy history.
12:00 PM Jun 11th from web

Here's link to presser & photos re: TC/Exxon partnership. &
12:09 PM Jun 11th from web

EIA estimates US energy consumption will INCREASE by 44% in next 20 yrs. We MUST utilize our local energy sources.
3:17 PM Jun 12th from web

A month later, there was a nice little tweet:

AK is the place to invest. 15 new oil & gas explorers rcvd $193M cash from State for their tax credits in FY09.
10:50 AM Jul 12th from web

An anonymous source reported that Sarah Palin stayed with someone named “Smith” in Giddings Tx, who had a connection to Wasilla, and that they believed that the actual place she was staying at had a gate with the letter/number “Dj-1” on it.

Who are these people?

Dorwin and Joanne Smith, the principals of complex subcontractor DJ Excavation & Development, have donated $7,100 to Palin ……..Joanne is a Palin appointee on the state Board of Nursing.

The Wasilla-Giddings Connection:
Dorwin Smith
1584 County Road 226
Giddings, TX 78942-6174

(979) 542-3443

Dorwin R Smith
2970 E Cottle Loop
Wasilla, AK 99654-7251

Same name, same last four digits on the phone numbers. Coincidence?

Sarah Palin may have enjoyed the hospitality of this generous couple, maybe not. But one thing is for sure, she enjoyed the generosity of a number on Texan business people on June 13, 2009. SarahPac received some large donations on that date:

sarahpac donations tx 670

We ask again, who are these people?

Robyn Roberts ($5,000 donation)

She and her husband Alan live in Giddings. They have numerous properties, and own a “Ranch” with an airfield, helicopter and airplane and it is right down the road from the gate with the Dj-1 marking.

Pumpco, Inc.
P.O. Box 742
Giddings, Texas 78942

Julie Irwin-Cotton ($5,000 donation)

119 Bucks Rd.
Paige, Tx 78659

Owner of:
J Irwin Co.
3775 Hwy 290 East
Paige, Tx. 78659

Pipeline Contractors

Kimberly Morgan Sarahpac donation ($5,000 donation)

Partner with husband (Michael Ray Morgan)

Morgan Petroleum Testers
(physical address)
1038 Private Rd. 7703
Giddings, Tx. 78942

Mailing Address
P.O. Box 1600
Giddings, Tx. 78942

RJ Nitsche ($2,000 donation)

WCS Oil & Gas Corp

451 Cactus St.
Giddings, Texas 78946

He is also listed as being a partner in a construction firm, Chasco and listed as CEO of Insurance Network of America (Texas).

sarahpac donors insurance network of america

All the above SarahPac donors have connections with the gas and oil industry.

Two other people from Texas who donated on June 13 are not directly connected to the industry, but let's look at them just because we're curious:

Larry Lehman ($1,000 donation)
Larry & Darlene Lehman Owners of D&L Consulting & Investment
931 Acorn St.
Giddings , Texas 78942

I could not find a website or any further information on D&L Consulting & Investment.

Kelli L. Higgins
(although her donation to the PAC was only $250.00, there is the Paige Tx address, where “Irwin-Cotton” is from)

Ms Higgins and a William Higgins are connected to Lone Star Auctions

Kelli Higgins
450 Schwantz Ranch Rd,
Mcdade, TX 78650

William Higgins Jr
Rr 1,
Mc Dade, TX 78650

Ms Higgins is also listed as:

Giddings New Horizon Lions Club
Kelli Higgins
P.O. Box 531
Giddings, Texas 78942

We have four large donations from people connected with the oil and gas industry, one from an investment company and a small donation by an individual, all on the same day and all from or around Giddings, Texas.

Remember that tweet from earlier?

AK is the place to invest. 15 new oil & gas explorers rcvd $193M cash from State for their tax credits in FY09.
10:50 AM Jul 12th from web

soa oil tax credits

No one has been able to find a list of the 15 new oil and gas explorers who were the recipients of these $193 million dollars. The press release is not listed in the archives under the Oil & Gas Production Tax News.

There may be no connection whatsoever to those companies or people in Giddings, but there are so many coincidences... the timing of Sarah Palin's visit to Giddings, Texas, all the donations to SarahPac on June 13 and this lovely tax break for 15 new investors...

Sarah Palin doesn't believe in coincidences...

Feel free to explore these findings a bit further. Please don't use the e-mail addresses and telephone numbers that appear on this post to badger people for information. The contact information for all these people and companies are easily found on their own websites or through searches, but let's be careful out there.

(Some of the links provided in Sarah Palin's tweets don't work anymore. I provided hyperlinks to the ones that can still be accessed)


ADN July 22, 2009

The state paid $193 million in cash over the past year to oil and gas explorers in exchange for tax credits they had accrued for making investments in the state, the Department of Revenue said.

For fiscal year 2009, which ended on June 30, the state distributed the $193 million to 15 "new" oil and gas explorers, the department said.

By new, the state means companies that aren't yet producing any oil or gas, said state Revenue Commissioner Pat Galvin. He said he couldn't by law reveal the names of the individual companies. (H/T to MicMac for the link)

Has anybody found out which law prevents the state from revealing the names of the companies?

Friday, 26 February 2010

Rex Butler: Levi Johnston will pay Bristol Palin the outstanding child support "within a week" - UPDATE!

Levi Johnston with Tuxedo

ABC reported just a few minutes ago:

"In a 20-minute hearing Thursday, a judge ordered Levi Johnston to pay child support and retroactive back payments for the care of Tripp, the son he had with Bristol Palin, daughter of former vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.

On Nov. 3, 2009, Bristol Palin filed a legal petition seeking sole custody of Tripp and child support from Johnston in accordance with Alaska law. She asked for primary custody with visitation rights for Johnston, as well as $1,700 of child support a month.

Rex Butler, attorney for Johnston, told ABC News that his client is eager to make the back payments and will hand over a check within the week.

"The judge decided that Bristol should have child support, which we don't disagree with," Butler told the ABC News Law and Justice Unit. "Fortunately, Levi has put this money aside a long time ago. The back support is going to come out to about $10,000 to $13,000, and he's going to write Bristol a check."

Butler confirmed that Johnston's saved funds came in part from modeling, particularly a much-publicized spread in Playgirl, but said the most important matter going forward was "whether to seek full custody, split custody or whether Levi will be satisfied with reasonable visitation."

"I think split custody is the best of these," Butler said."


Well, let's hope that the Johnston's get to see Tripp on a regular basis now!



The celebrity and media website "monstersandcritics" have an interesting report with new details regarding the custody case, including an interesting new picture of Bristol - check it out! They general opinion in the media now seems to be that Bristol Palin "won the custody case". How on earth could that happen? Didn't Levi originally have the advantage, being faced with an outrageous claim by Bristol in many respects?

They write:

The daughter of Sarah Palin, Bristol, has been awarded interim child support in a court battle with the father of her one-year-old son.

A judge in Alaska ordered Levi Johnston to pay Bristol nearly $18,000 in overdue child support payments, according to reports.

Johnston, a Playgirl cover model, previously claimed his income was too erratic to meet Bristol's original demand of $1,750 per month.

But the 19-year-old teen mum, who is guest-starring in an episode of The Secret Life Of The American Teenager was pleased with the ruling.

Her lawyer, Thomas Van Flein, said: 'Bristol was in court today and she was pleased with the way things went. Levi was not present in court.'

Palin won interim child support for her son, Tripp, and the right to subpoena Johnston's commercial earnings, according to reports.

Van Flein said: 'She still has both physical and legal custody of their son, although she has been working with Levi so that he can see him on Saturdays. The pair are communicating via text and e-mail and are deciding to put their son first – we are actively working with Levi’s lawyer to get a more regular schedule set-up and we hope to have everything in place before the next court date on 23 September.

“The payments amount to around $18,000 and date back to when their son was born, and Levi will be paying around $1,600 a month in ongoing child support payments.'


Same old Sarah Palin - UPDATE!

Sarah Palin discussed the health care summit with Sean Hannity. I'll quote just a couple of passages because the whole thing is much too painful.

PALIN: I think some of the details that we didn't hear a whole lot about coming from the president and the bill that he is supportive of had to do with like price controls, which of course will manipulate and distort America's traditionally free market way of doing business in our economy.

The health insurance companies have been making an obscene amount of money from American people through higher and higher premiums and rationing of health care.

HANNITY: All right, last question. Net winners, net losers. Did the president hurt himself today? Did the Republicans help themselves today in terms of public perception?

PALIN: The Republicans helped themselves, absolutely. They got to talk about the patient-centered, free market oriented solutions to health care reform that is needed. We do need to reform much of our health care that we have in America. But they were able to articulate that, whereas the Democrats, the president, it was just more of the same old, same old. It was a whole lot of lecturing again.

Same old, same old? I beg your pardon, Sarah Palin. You are the one who wants more of the same old, same old. You want health care reform based on free market, without any interference from the government. Do you call that reform? That's been the status quo for years and years. It's not patient-centered, it's big corporation-centered and your "reform" doesn't change that one little bit.

Please... sit-down-and-shut-up!

If you have the stomach to watch it, here are the links: PART I and PART II.


UPDATE (by Patrick):

Oh, I have a feeling that you won't like that very much:

After her appearance on the Hannity TV-show, Sarah also was a guest on the Hannity radio show. It seems that Hannity simply cannot get enough of her. Anyway, at the beginning of the conversation, Sean Hannity plays a short audio clip of President Obama, who reminds John McCain at the healthcare summit that the campaign and the election "are over", in response to a critical remark by John McCain.

Sean Hannity then mentions that this remark by Obama was "insulting" and thus paves the way for Sarah "Wasilli Vanilli" Palin, who is outraged - what else? She explains that she and Todd "both saw this part" and they "both" said: "How arrogant of our President" and a moment later she adds that the criticizm "is not boding well for our President's character" and that John McCain "has sacrificed more for our country than our President has".

This woman seriously messes up my English! Please let us know in the comments if you understood these sentences differently.

Apparently John McCain is off-limits to political attacks now because he is an American war-hero, according to Sarah Palin.

But you can criticize the character of the President, of course (unless he is a war-hero, I guess, because then he is automatically "off limits" and oppositon also won't be needed any more).

See in the clip from 2:05:

I think that the Republicans should from now on exclusively "recruit" war-vetereans and put them into congress. Then it will be impossible for them in future to be criticized by Democrats. Sounds like a safe plan.

It's a pity that Sarah didn't think about her self-proclaimed standards in this respect when she called John Kerry in "Going Rogue" an "elitist loon".

In the clip with Hannity, earlier from 1:47, Sarah Palin also has the temerity the promote "free-market solutions for healthcare" - despite of the fact that her grandson Tripp receives Government healthcare for natives in Alaska.

Sarah, let me ask you: Your children, what kind of healthcare do THEY receive? Because I have a feeling that Bristol, Willow, Piper, Track and Trig might as well enjoy the free Alaskan Government healthcare for natives.

Come on, Sarah, don't be shy!


Thursday, 25 February 2010

Sarah Palin, "Family Love", and the Johnstons - UPDATE!

By Kathleen

Yesterday Gryphen dropped yet another interesting bombshell. He revealed that the much discussed Triggybear photographs had been snapped by Levi’s mother, Sherry Johnston, on the 3rd May, 2008, a significant date because it was the day of Levi’s 18th birthday. I’ll come back to this later.

Here is the photo of Sarah, Mercede and Trig, taken from Mercede's "Triggybear" collection, which Mercede published on 4th May, 2008 on her myspace. The caption reads “Mommy Inlaw Trig and Myself”. Mercede and Sarah certainly do seem relaxed and comfortable with each other, don’t they?

Mercede Johnston with Sarah Palin and Trig - May 3, 2008

Next we have the photo of Mercede, Bristol and Trig. Again there is no tension here. The girls both appear to be happy in each others company. No sign here at all of the brooding hostility that is yet to come. For the moment everything is hunky dory and the caption reads “Family Love”.

Mercede Johnston with Bristol Palin - Family Love

I also include this curious photo taken on the 25th April, 2008, one week after Trig's official birth.

It is titled "My Sister IN-LAW , Oooh how I love her". How much closer can you get?

Bristol Palin / Mercede Johnston - Prom Picture 25 April 2008

This leads us nicely to the mystery photo which was first revealed on the Tyra Banks Show on 6th April, 2009.

Wonkette - Levi Johnston with Trig in Sarah Palin's house - Triggybear pictures

Audrey at Palin Deceptions wrote an excellent post regarding this photo which I encourage everyone to go back and read. With help from the Palin Deception Team, Audrey quickly identified that the photo was of Levi, Mercede and Trig and that it had been taken on the same day as the well known Triggybear pictures.

So let’s step back in time to the day when the pictures were taken. It is Levi’s eighteenth birthday. It’s quite an exciting birthday for many young people who often find themselves in a hurry to grow up and gain some independence. We don’t know for certain how Levi celebrated his birthday but we do know that some kind of celebration was held for him at the Palin home and that at least two adults (Sherry and Sarah) were involved. How do we know this? Let’s take a closer look at the new enlarged version of the photo that Gryphen posted:

Levi Johnston with Trig - Triggybear pictures - LARGE

On the counter behind Levi, who is tenderly cuddling tiny baby Trig, is a birthday cake. It must have been for Levi because it was his birthday. How sweet it was of Sarah to open up her house to a virtual stranger, his sister and his mother and share birthday cake with them.

In the following video, Sarah suggests to Barbara Walters the fact that she did not know Levi very well (from 5:32):

Barbara Walters: "At the time, leaving aside feelings today -- how did you feel about Bristol's boyfriend, Levi Johnston?"

Sarah: "We didn't see a lot of Levi. Bristol told us that she was pregnant...that was probably the only...only the second time that we had seen Levi there, in our living room, having a conversation with us like that."

Was this really "the second time" that they had had a conversation like that? Did Sarah unconsciously reveal to Barbara that there had been two conversations with Levi in which Bristol revealed that she was pregnant? Or did she simply want to imply that she had rarely met the young man who had impregnated her daughter?

The pictures portray a different story. They seem to be a celebration of not just Levi’s birthday but a celebration of life. Trig’s life. Members of the Johnston and Palin families come together to share birthday cake and cuddle Sarah’s “precious perfect miracle” and practice “Family Love”. We also shouldn’t forget that previously on the morning of 18th April Levi was present at the hospital to welcome Trig into the world, according to Levi's article in Vanity Fair, October issue 2009. For a young man that it has been suggested that they wanted out of their daughter’s life and that Sarah implies that she did not know well Levi certainly was tight with the Palins.

Levi Johnston - Vanity Fair screenshot April 18 - 2008
(Levi Johnston, Vanity Fair, October 2009)

An obvious question is why are they celebrating Levi’s important birthday at the Palin home? Why not at his family home with his mother and sister? Perhaps Bristol would join them there for cake and nibbles? Could it be that Levi felt so extremely comfortable at chez Palin because it was now his home and that he invited his mother and sister there to celebrate his important birthday? And did he live there with Bristol while she took care of Trig and did he help her take care of him?

So many questions and I will admit that I do not have definitive answers to them. Here is what we do know. We have the picture which turned up mysteriously on the Tyra Bank Show. A picture taken by Sherry in which Levi and Mercede share a very tender moment with a frail looking baby identified as Trig. We have Levi’s 18th birthday celebration shared by members of both families in the Palin home indicating that Levi was possibly living there at the time the photo was taken. We have the photo of Bristol and Mercede which identifies Bristol as Mercede's sister "IN LAW". We have the identification of Sarah as “Mommy Inlaw” and the caption underneath the photo of Bristol with Mercede and Trig which is curiously titled “Family Love”.

To this I’d like to add one more teensy observation. And this may provide the twist in the tale or not. In the Tyra Bank photo take a look at Levi’s ring finger. He wears a gold band. Is this a promise ring, an engagement ring or a wedding band?

In the Vanity Fair article Levi said that they broke the news of Bristol’s pregnancy with Tripp to Sarah and Todd the day after his birthday. Yet here he is wearing on his ring finger a gold band. Gryphen has suggested that this is an engagement ring and I have no reason to doubt what he says although I am still open to the suggestion that they may have married. What I do ask myself is why the hurry to commit and when did they become engaged? Bristol was seventeen. Levi just turned eighteen.

Levi Johnston - Vanity Fair screenshot May 4, 2008
(Levi Johnston, Vanity Fair, October 2009)

Levi has admitted himself that his relationship with Bristol was somewhat tumultuous. Finally, Sarah has stated that she did not know this young man well at all. This young man who was presumably promised or engaged to her daughter is not known to her very well at all, yet he goes so far as to wear a ring at his birthday party in Sarah's kitchen - and this ONE DAY BEFORE the happy couple had broken the news to the Palins of Bristol's pregnancy with Tripp.

Does this make sense to anyone?



I have found further evidence that Levi WAS living with the Palins before and around the time of his birthday. I think that this is very crucial and absolutely proves that Sarah was lying when she spoke to Barbara Walters.

Again. Ask yourself why was he living there? I can only surmise that he was helping Bristol take care of Trig.

From the Vanity Fair Interview, October Issue 2009:

"...since I used to sleep on the couch until Bristol got pregnant......."

"Todd slept in the living room, on his little black recliner, with the TV going in the background—usually with the news or an Ultimate Fighting Championship match on—wearing clothes he wore that same day. (Since I used to sleep on the couch until Bristol got pregnant, I know he doesn’t snore, so that’s not why he wasn’t in bed.) At four a.m., he was gone, off doing something. Sarah would wake up around five, then go to Kaladi Brothers Coffee soon after."

Levi Vanity Fair part 1
Levi Vanity Fair part 2
(Levi Johnston, Vanity Fair, October 2009)
In addition, it's of course also a blatant lie by Sarah Palin in the interview with Barbara Walters when Sarah claimed that she didn't know that Bristol already had sex when the news of the pregnancy with Tripp arrived.
The written proof for this lie is hidden in Bristol Palin's old myspace comments, which the Palindeception research team unearthed in early 2009.
On May 14, 2007, Bristol Palin wrote in the myspace comments on Johnny Chandler's page:
"haha, my mom was asking me who i was on the phone with last night, and she said she heard everything i was she thinks im pregnant. ahaha, call me later if you'd like.."
Bristol Myspace new 1
This incident had even further consequences for Bristol, because Sarah Palin then took Bristol's phone away for a few days:

Bristol Myspace new 2

Bristol Myspace new 3

You can download Bristol Palin's complete old myspace-comments HERE.

Well, can we really be surprised? After all, everyone who still has his/her marbles in place knows that Sarah Palin is a nasty pathological liar.

Here is another fine example of Sarah's lies, exclusively uncovered by Palingates in December last year.


Sarah Palin, "master practitioner of identity politics, was outranked by Andrea Friedman" - TIME

sp punch
Picture by Francisco Caceres

Time has an excellent article by James Poniewozik looking into Sarah Palin's cartoon war. The article makes an opening reference to the film Annie Hall and Marshall McLuhan, which I'll quote for context:

In the movie Annie Hall, Woody Allen's character, Alvy Singer, is standing in a movie line, listening to some blowhard intellectual hold forth about media scholar Marshall McLuhan. When the loudmouth cites his own academic credentials, Singer produces the actual McLuhan to refute him: "You know nothing of my work!" Alvy 1, Egghead 0.

Palin posted on Facebook that the scene was "another punch in the gut." This time, however, Palin's outrage prompted not an apology but a smackdown, from Andrea Fay Friedman, a Family Guy voice actress — who actually has Down. "My parents raised me to have a sense of humor," she said. "My mother did not carry me around under her arm like a loaf of French bread the way former governor Palin carries her son Trig around looking for sympathy and votes." Ouch. Cartoon 1, Politician 0.

The Family Guy scene was a personal shot — but at Palin, not Trig. Friedman's character was assertive, intelligent and confident (and a young woman, not an infant boy). Palin seemed to be defending neither her son nor the disabled generally but herself, a public figure whom a cartoon had the temerity to poke fun at.

But what's more important is the way Friedman bested her supposed defender: by beating her at her own game. As a public figure, Palin is the embodiment of the "I have Mr. McLuhan right here" argument, taking her authority not from policy papers or résumé credentials but from her biography.

Palin is a master practitioner of identity politics, with an ironic twist. When it comes to social issues or the academic canon or civil-rights legislation, it used to be conservatives who would chafe at liberals playing race, gender or other such oppressed-group cards. With Palin, though, conservatives have a champion who uses group identity — rural, female, military mom, special-needs mom, etc. — as her seal of authenticity. But against Family Guy and Friedman, Palin, for once, was outranked by someone enlisting her own biography and personal experience. This time, Palin was not the McLuhaner but the McLuhanee.

Now, Palin and her defenders could argue that Friedman is simply one woman with Down and cannot decide for everyone — disabled or not — what is and is not offensive. That response, by the way, would have the advantage of being correct. But it would also implicitly undermine Palin's claim to authority. She would then be just one more military mom, one more teen mom's mother — one more hopeful pol looking for attention.

I find it really wonderful that Poniewozik went further into his analysis of Sarah Palin's identity politics, extending it to the other weapons in Sarah's arsenal, in addition to her special needs credentials. He clearly debunks her claims of "talking the talk and walking the walk" as if her personal circumstances gave her ultimate authority to pontificate on just about any subject.

Andrea Friedman called Sarah Palin's bluff on special needs. Let's hope more people will do the same about the rest of her personal experiences so she can finally sit down and shut up.

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Sarah Palin is not a good special needs advocate

I'll start with a quick comment about Meg Stapleton's resignation.

If she wasn't thrown under the bus and we take what she said at face value,

"I have done my best to scale back but Isabella is now resorting to hiding my BlackBerry and she shouldn't grow up begging for a mother to start acting like a mother,"

good for her!

I shudder to think what would happen if one of Sarah Palin's children should resort to the same tactics and hid her precious BlackBerry... they're having a bad enough time as it is!

Moving on to the real topic of this post, we've been validated at last.

Down syndrome real advocates are not very keen on Sarah Palin and her approach to the whole special needs issue.

From the ADN, via Daily Beast:

"Since the end of the presidential election, we haven't heard Sarah Palin articulate any specific policy proposals [on disability]," said Peter Berns, CEO of The Arc, a lobbying group representing people with intellectual disabilities. ...

Bruce Fletcher, founder and CEO of the New York-based National Association for the Developmentally Disabled, was harsher, saying, "I think having a celebrity as an advocate is a very good idea. But I don't think she's the right person to do that given that there's a cloud over her in terms of her credibility."

MSNBC First Read, also via Daily Beast:

Palin has drawn crowds of parents of children with disabilities to some of her events, but even as she professed to be their greatest advocates during the 2008 campaign questions were being asked as to what she would do when it comes to funding. At the end of the day, that's where a legislator can have the greatest impact.

And Palin was on record in wanting to reject stimulus funds to her state -- millions of which included special education funding.

One person didn't take so long to figure out what Sarah Palin was all about. On September 10, 2008, Amy Silverman, mother of a then 5-year-old child with Down syndrome, had already heard the alarm bells, as when Amy describes hers and her husband's reaction to McCain's pick of running mate:

Neither of us was sure how to pronounce her name, and we didn't know much about her politics, but both my husband and I knew exactly who Sarah Palin was. We paid attention in April, when she had her fifth baby, Trig.

We pay attention to things like that. Our 5-year-old daughter has Down syndrome.

I immediately started shrieking, and didn't stop for a week.


I'm pretty much done shrieking. Now I'm just scared.

And mad that I wasted so much time being pissed at myself for being distracted by Sarah Palin's personal life. Her personal life is not a distraction; it's her selling point, and to that end, it deserves the scrutiny it's gotten, and more. When she put her four kids center stage — literally — and talked about the fifth fighting in Iraq, she made perfectly clear what she brings to this campaign: her experience as a hockey mom.

And how sad that she was willing to put her oldest daughter through the humiliation of having her unplanned pregnancy outed to everyone in the world with access to a television set.

Palin is shamelessly using her personal life to sell her candidacy in a way that's reminiscent of just one other politician I can think of — and that's John McCain. But at least in McCain's case, he's his own pawn, vis-à-vis his POW story. Track, Bristol, Willow, Piper, and Trig are their mother's pawns.

Andrea Friedman summed it up, recently: "My mother did not carry me around under her arm like a loaf of French bread the way former Governor Palin carries her son Trig around looking for sympathy and votes."

(Do read the rest of Amy Silverman's article. You can also visit her delightful blog, Girl In a Party Hat.)

Gryphen's "Eargate"

We have been asked to comment on "Eargate" by several readers.

This is how the whole thing happened: Gryphen broke a major story about Trig's ears and a tale of two babies. Of course the more inquisitive bloggers immediately hit the googles trying to find more photographs in order to corroborate Gryphen's evidence. Bree found some interesting pictures from the book tour and posted them. The thing is, our team came up with exactly the same photos, we were up to our ears in photos! It seemed a bit futile to do a re-run of Gryph's and Bree's posts just to be "in" on the story, even though we spent a lot of time looking for new pictures and taking a closer look at the existing ones.

It is Gryphen's story. He worked on it for ten months, consulted loads of experts, obtained an opinion from a physician and has first hand accounts regarding what therapies Trig receive or didn't receive. If we made any amazing discoveries about the ears, we wouldn't publish it on Palingates. We would send everything to Gryphen, it is HIS big story, not ours.

The progressive bloggers work in tandem on most stories, but when it comes to big scoops, we don't steal each other's thunder.

Gryphen wouldn't do it to us...


So there you have it, we didn't find anything new or interesting to add to Gryphen's findings and if we did, you wouldn't read it here first. You would read it on Immoral Minority!

Tuesday, 23 February 2010

How the Family Guy controversy was received around the web

I have collected some reactions to the Family Guy controversy from around the web. It seems to me that the people who expressed opinions in favour of Sarah Palin had not watched the episode in question. The people who had, even though some don't appreciate Family Guy's type of humour, presented a more balanced view. I didn't think it was necessary to show the comments from Sarah Palin's usual supporters. We already saw a sample of their opinions included in a previous post.

Perez Hilton

People with Down Syndrome can be completely functioning, capable people, and although Family Guy didn't approach the subject in a completely PC manner, it makes a strong point!!

Why should anyone make those with Down Syndrome feel anymore different than the rest of us, even if it's by shielding them from jokes? All it does is isolate people even further - and nobody should feel that way.

We hope you take notice, Sarah! You could learn something from Andrea Fay Friedman!!

Joy Behar

You know, I think that, as comedians, we have a sort of an obligation to make fun of the guys up above, not the guys down below, people who are in trouble, people in pain. What’s the point of that? That’s an easy shot. So I agree with Sarah on this one.

Gail Williamson, executive director of the Down Syndrome Association of Los Angeles, which, among other services, assists films and television series in casting actors with the disability, and helped Ms. Friedman get hired by “Family Guy,” said it did not matter whether she thought the episode was funny.

“Within ‘Family Guy,’ the character was fully included, well-rounded, dynamic, not dealing with stereotypical Down syndrome issues,” Ms. Williamson said. She added: “Am I a fan of that kind of humor? Eh. It’s beside the point.”

“If we’re asking for full inclusion in the schools and full inclusion in the world,” she said, “ we should appreciate full inclusion with other genres. Even if those genres are not what we appreciate.”

A random comment the comments, many from the families of special needs kids, like mine. We are all rooting for MORE humor, not less. Palin is out of town on this. Read her book, Going Rogue and any parent of a special needs child or adult will be made breathless by the sucking sound of Palin using her child as political football. No personal revelation of how this terrific kid changed her life, or her family's life. She carts him around like a football from booksigning to booksigning. She talks the talk, does not walk the walk. Read the opinion of Andrea Friedman, the DS actor voice behind the Family Guy character. In sum: Palin has no sense of humor.

I would add: Palin has no sense of of DS, period.

Down Syndrome Actress Plays Indentity Politics
, 'Absolute Moral Authority' Card

The latest shot fired in the 'Family Guy' Sarah Palin Down syndrome feud came from the actress who voiced the Down syndrome character in the episode in question. Andrea Friedman, who herself has Down syndrome, is upset.

This is identity politics at its worse with the "absolute moral authority" card thrown in. Andrea Friedman thought that the sub plot, including the crack about the "former governor of Alaska," was funny, so you better think it's funny too.

Imagine someone making fun of—say—one or both of President Obama's daughters. Imagine the president being told he can't take a joke when he reacts, as one would expect, more as a father than a president. Then state the premise again that there is no double standard.


As a Mom of a son with DS, we need to quit making it seem as if having a child with DS should qualify you for the freaking Nobel Peace Prize! That implies that there is inherintly something wrong with having DS - that they are a lesser people. Until we accept that having DS and other chromosome disorders is no different than having blond hair or blue eyes - by that, I mean realizing that DS is part of who a person is - we are NEVER going to move forward with disability rights! Maybe then 90% of babies with DS wouldn't be aborted...

I am a new poster to this blog, though I've followed for a while now. I posted (1st time) regarding this topic yesterday, but this reinforces my thought that DS advocates & anti-SP bloggers are natural allies. I am the parent of a child with DS about the same age as Trig. He was one of the initial reasons I started looking into the SP issue(s). Needless to say, I've been a little horrified by the Palin clan.

Oh, and I love Family Guy (usually), and I found nothing offensive in this episode r/t DS. I thought it was great to include the DS character in a non-"special" way.

Tracy Pattin

I was at Real Time with Bill Maher at CBS Studios last night for the first episode of season 8. Family Guy’s Seth McFarlane was a guest. Bill Maher asked him about the Sarah Palin controversy over Down’s Syndrome Voice Actor, Andrea McFarlane played a Down’s Syndrome person. Sarah Palin was outraged and felt that Family Guy and that character was making fun of her Down’s Syndrome son Trig.

McFarlane defended the character choice of using a person with Down’s Syndrome to play the role, saying that Andrea “loves her life as a voice actor and is proud to be part of the show.” As a sister of a Down’s Syndrome person, this was great to hear!

Yo Mamma Mamma

As parents of children with different abilities, our challenge, I believe is to figure out how to teach the truth...and help our peers teach their children the truth, and their children's children the same truth.

That truth being that our children may have "eyes that are oddly made" but they are more like other people than they are different. Not people to be pitied, not people to be feared, or ridiculed or ignored. Just people. Not any more "God's Children" than any one else is. Just children.

Special Children

This reminds me of the flap over Family Guy making fun of deaf actress Marlee Matlin's speaking voice, which Matlin made clear in a self-lampooning appearance on a live episode was just fine with her. It's certainly more fun to be laughing with than laughed at, and there's something to be said for the argument that treating people with disabilities as too fragile and special to be part of the comedy mix like everybody else is insulting in its own way. Whether rough comic treatments are cruel or cool is often in the eye of the beholder.

Blair Williamson

This is my friend and fellow actor Andrea Friedman. She did a great voice over job on "Family Guy." I also like the cartoon version of her.

Some comments on Blair's post:

. Goes to show that there are two sides to every story. I don't watch this show, and don't plan to, but, I support any opportunity for our kids with Down syndrome to succeed. I have always respected Andrea and her work, and I admire her for taking on this role. Voice over work sound fun... and I don't think Andrea would ever make fun specifically of Trig. I have very mixed feelings about what the show has done... but appreciate that Andrea got another role to add to her resume!

. I don't know if anything is tastefully done on that show, but I love that Andrea Friedman was hired for the role and that the character was not a stereotype. It is quite wonderful that so much discussion is continuing about Andrea Friedman's remarks in response to Sarah Palin - taking the focus off the show and politics and putting it where it belongs, in advocacy.

. Ms. Friedman continued, “My mother did not carry me around under her arm like a loaf of French bread the way former Governor Palin carries her son Trig around looking for sympathy and votes.”
You put that wonderfully. I have been saying that all along although I think you said it better. Kudos to you Andrea.
I have worked in a group home for twenty three years with young adults with DS and I also have a ten year old niece with DS. I take more offense from her exploiting her son than I did from the show.

There was nothing from Sarah Palin after the outraged Facebook note. The best she could offer after Ms Friedman's comments was a photoshopped picture of Trig, to show what a happy and normal life he leads...

The co-author of the Facebook rant, Bristol Palin, had nothing to say to Andrea Friedman either, but is launching her own acting career.

Bristol Palin, arguably the most famous teen mother in America, will make her acting debut playing herself on ABC Family's "The Secret Life of the American Teenager," the network announced today.

Shannyn Moore talks on the air about Sarah Palin's "Wild Ride" with Trig - Including conversation with Patrick

I was very thankful that Shannyn Moore today talked to me on the air again about Sarah Palin's "pregnancy" with Trig. We had a first, very pleasant conversation on the air on February 1, 2010, but unfortunately there was a technical problem with the recording of the show, therefore the tape is not available.

This time I was prepared and recorded the show myself. The reason I called in was that Shannyn Moore today at the beginning of her show discussed in great length Sarah's "Wild Ride" which happened on April 17, 2008, while Sarah was "officially pregnant" with Trig.

I managed to record the last part of her discussion of the "Wild Ride", the conversation with another member of the audience who talked with Shannyn about Trig's political importance for Sarah, and then my own conversation with Shannyn. I was quite happy that I could bring a few points across, however, I felt that our first conversation on February 1 which is unfortunately not available was "smoother". But it is a controversial subject, and it is apparent that Shannyn and I disagree about several things.


Download Sarah Palin's own version of the "Wilde Ride" which she explained to the public during her press conference on April 22, 2008:


Palingates wrote about Sarah's "Wild Ride" for example HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE.

I divided the recording in two parts.

My conversation with Shannyn is included in the second part.

By the way: It was Sarah Palin's fifth child, but her SEVENTH pregnancy (two of which ended in miscarriage, as Sarah describes in detail in "Going Rogue").

What the heck was Sarah Palin doing when she flew from Texas to Alaska on April 17, 2008, after her water had broken, having suffered two previous miscarriages? That is another question you will never ever receive an answer to!

And no doctor, knowing that her patient had had two miscarriages in the past would advise her patient to fly after her water had broken, either.

Enjoy! ;-)


Monday, 22 February 2010

Look what Sarah Palin, the twit from Wasilla, has tweeted today! - UPDATE

"The mere idea of someone doctoring the photo of a special needs baby is appalling." --- Meg Stapleton to CNN, June 2009


Sarah Palin fingertips have discovered the "little twittering thing" again. She is currently at the Iron Dog snowmobile race in Alaska, in which Todd takes part, and she reveals her excitement to the world via twitter.

Who knows, maybe Todd will win this time WITHOUT cheating.

Sarah couldn't help herself and sent out this tweet today:

Trig twitter madness 1

"Trig is a fan" - haha, Sarah, how funny, I cannot stop laughing. You are hilarious!

The attached picture is: A silly photo-montage of Trig!

UPDATE - Here's the original photo:

Sarah, please tell me, why isn't that funny?

Don't bother to use your brain cells - I tell you why:

It isn't funny because this is the arrogant and bitchy answer you just gave to Andrea Friedman. Look at Trig, he has a normal life, too! He is a fan!

No, Trig hasn't a normal life. He has a mentally disturbed "mother" who uses him as a prop - again, for the whole world to see.

Instead of giving a reasoned response to the sincere concerns of Andrea, which you haven't done and surely will never do, you just showed her the finger, which is apparently the only response you are mentally capable of.

Did I say that you actually haven't even given birth to Trig...oh, forget it, I just feel sick.

(Our friend EyeOnYou has more details about the photoshopped picture)

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Sarah Palin's hypocrisy, an enduring theme: "socialized healthcare" is good enough for the Palin family

Shannyn Moore and earlier the Daily Kos commented on the fact that Bristol Palin's son Tripp Johnston is an enrolled tribal member of the Curyung Tribe and receives health care services at the state of the art Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage.

Recently released documents from the custody battle show clearly Tripp Palin Johnston has socialized health care through Indian Health Services and the Alaska Native Medical Center.

Palin’s family has federally funded health care afforded to them…but if you had, it Barack Obama might kill you. Put this on the list of Palin’s Greatest Hypocritical Hits…Volume 97.

Tripp is eligible to Native health care, according to this document.

native health eligibility 1
native health eligibility 2
Apart from collecting Bristol Bay Native Corporation dividends for himself and his children, Todd has very little involvement in native affairs.

native corp dividends

An ADN article gives us some insight into Todd Palin's "nativeness":

Culturally, the Palins live a lifestyle of small-town Alaska. Todd does not take part in Native organizations or tribal politics. He grew up in Glennallen and Wasilla. His Native roots can be seen in his dividends from the Bristol Bay Native Corporation and boyhood visits with his grandma, where he learned to tend fish nets along the Nushagak River.

The Palins are grifters and opportunists as well as world class hypocrites. They are using anything they can to slam Levi at any given opportunity. Levi expected to have to provide health care cover for his son and would have deductions for it, naturally. So the Palins came back with the Native "thingie" to make Levi look bad, reinforcing their hypocrite credentials in the process. After all, Granny Palin is death panelled against socialized health care...

In the meantime, Tripp is receiving free health care thanks to grandad NINO (Native In Name Only).

Open thread - More fun with Sarah Palin and Family Guy - Videos - UPDATE

This video was mentioned in the comments on the last thread and I thought it would be fun to compare it to the actual Katie Couric interview with Sarah Palin.

Check it out:


UPDATE (by Patrick):

For even more fun, please read this hilariously funny fictional interview with Sarah Palin which was written by a concert pianist on his blog. The interview was already created during the presidential campaign in 2008, but it has lost nothing of its genius since then.


Saturday, 20 February 2010

Bristol Palin v Levi Johnston, there are too many people trying to get involved...

Dave Smith, Alicia Fix, Eddie Burke and Jessica Beehive should read this report:

A certain Kevin Trudeau, dubbed "The Informacial King" has been found to be in contempt of court and will serve 30 days in prison for asking people to bombard a judge with e-mails.

Trudeau last week put up a plea on his Web site last week telling fans "Kevin needs your voice," and listing the judge's e-mail address, according to the Chicago Tribune.

U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman was not amused when his inbox was subsequently clogged with hundreds of testimonials about the wonders of Trudeau's methods (his "Natural Cures" series has sold millions of books). Some of the e-mails were "harassing, threatening and interfering," the judge said, according to the Sun-Times.

The four people named above did exactly the same thing, using Facebook, Twitter and a radio show to broadcast the e-mail addresses and telephone numbers of two judges involved in the custody case known as Bristol Palin v Levi Johnston, urging their followers to contact the judges. This is the text of the protest, which can be found on Dave Smith's and Alicia Fix's Facebook event page:

" Tripp is not a Political Football "

We want to thank everyone for their time and attention to this matter. Over the Holidays; Superior Court Judge Kari C. Kristiansen issued a ruling under the authority of Superior Court Judge Sharon Gleason. The ruling was a denial to keep the Custody dispute Between Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston over 1 year old Tripp closed.

Judge Kristiansen sited there was no reason to keep this matter private. The Palin's trying to keep the proceedings focused on Tripp, fought for the closing of the proceedings. Levi Johnston argued for an open proceeding. The Decision raises many concerns of Political Hanky Panky; but even more, cannot be justified to be in the best interest of a 1 year old child.

Both of the Judges are appointees of Former Governor Tony Knowles--{ Democrat }. Both of the Judges are up for retention. Fancy for Re-Appointment in 2010. Both have been accused of activist liberal rulings prior.

The Law in Alaska without doubt provides for the closing of a proceeding. The best interest of the child, or other mitigating circumstances is the guide. There is no question both elements are in play here.

We here believe this decision is either one of the worst in Alaskan History; or is in fact: a Politically motivated attempt to harm or perhaps payback Sarah Palin. Perhaps elements of both could also be correct. Barracuda Brigade for Our American Girl! 2012 has decided, since the Judges want a public proceeding; to give them one.

This the address for both Judges.

Alaska Superior Court--XXX. Xth Ave.--Anchorage Alaska-XXXXX - XXXX --Attn: Judge Sharon Gleason/Attn: Judge Kari C. Kristiansen

Judge Gleason's phone#--907-XXX-XXXX
Judge Kristiansen's phone#--907-XXX-XXXX

The Judicial Review Commission of Alaska is set-up in a way, that any protest to them would be handled in this situation by: Judge Sharon Gleason---yep--that is why she had Judge Kristiansen hand down the decision.

The next level up is the Governor, Sean Parnell. His phone# is--907-XXX-XXXX, fax#--907-XXX-XXXX. See link below; under contact: will take you to his e-mail.

The " Tripp is not a Political Football " protest will formally begin on Thursday Jan. 7th at 12pm. cst. We ask all concerned to call, fax and e-mail Governor Parnell: also to call and write both Judges and let them know: Patriots across America find your actions a disgrace to the Judicial system. That our concerns are being directed to the Governor's Office.

The actual Court record will be available shortly, along with the list of retention. We thank you for your time and concern----Dave & Alicia

The protest is ongoing, scheduled to close on May 7.

This protest is rather bizarre. The only political entity involved in this case is Sarah Palin. Levi never had anything to do with politics, apart from being dragged to the Lower 48 to be paraded as Bristol's fiance during the vice presidential campaign. Levi Johnston has no interest in politics, all he wants is to be able to see his child and have a say regarding his upbringing.

It has been reported that Judge Kristiansen received death threats and had to be escorted by state troopers.

The leaders of the protest are not directly involved in the court case in question, so I'm not sure they can be found to be in contempt of court, but I hope there is some legal dispositive to bring these people to book.

As neither Bristol Palin nor her mother saw fit to condemn the actions of these misguided pit bulls on the quitter governor's Facebook page or on Twitter, we must assume they approve of them. Perhaps Judge Kristiansen could find Bristol guilty of something...

At the very least, Bristol is trying to stop her son from having a relationship with his loving father and family by any possible means. Hopefully the judge will be able to see through the Palins' dirty tricks.

They are due in court on February 25. It's going to be ugly...

Friday, 19 February 2010

Andrea Friedman, actress from "Family Guy" sets the record straight

Andrea Friedman and character Ellen

The father of the actress who provided the voice for the character of the young woman on the episode of Family Guy, which Sarah Palin described as "a kick in the gut", has sent this e-mail to a friend of Palingates:

Below is a copy of a letter to the editor that Andrea has written and sent. Please feel free to circulate it on the web or in any other manner that you choose.

All best wishes,

Hal Friedman

My name is Andrea Fay Friedman. I was born with Down syndrome. I played the role of Ellen on the "Extra Large Medium" episode of Family Guy that was broadcast on Valentine's day. Although they gave me red hair on the show, I am really a blonde. I also wore a red wig for my role in " Smudge" but I was a blonde in "Life Goes On". I guess former Governor Palin does not have a sense of humor. I thought the line "I am the daughter of the former governor of Alaska" was very funny. I think the word is "sarcasm".

In my family we think laughing is good. My parents raised me to have a sense of humor and to live a normal life. My mother did not carry me around under her arm like a loaf of French bread the way former Governor Palin carries her son Trig around looking for sympathy and votes.

Andrea sent her comment by e-mail to the New York Times.

(H/T to H S)


UPDATE by Regina

Here is a screenshot of the e-mail:

(Please click to enlarge)


UPDATES (by Patrick):

The creator of "Family Guy", Seth MacFarlane, talks on Real Time with Bill Maher about the controversy surrounding Sarah Palin and Andrea Fay Friedman:



The New York Times has admitted that they left the "loaf of French bread" sentence out of their original article.


In an e-mail message sent to The New York Times, Ms. Friedman wrote, “I guess former Governor Palin does not have a sense of humor.” She added that in her family, “we think laughing is good,” and that she was raised by her parents “to have a sense of humor and to live a normal life.”

Ms. Friedman continued, “My mother did not carry me around under her arm like a loaf of French bread the way former Governor Palin carries her son Trig around looking for sympathy and votes.”

For the original article by the New York Times CLICK HERE.


The New York Times, continuing their inability or failure to truly investigate the truth about Palin, excised the last sentence from Friedman's email in its story. Why am I not surprised? This is a paper that cannot call torture torture because Republican war criminals intimidate them. And they cannot give a person with Down Syndrome an opportunity to expose the cynicism at the heart of Palin's exploitation of Trig.

From our point of view, however, we cannot complain, because the fact that the full uncensored statement was only available on Palingates brought ten-thousands of new readers to our blog. Thank you, New York Times!



Andrea Fay Friedman discussed today on "The Insider" the "Family Guy controversy", her own upbringing, Trig and Sarah Palin:

I think that Andrea is very reflective and she carefully makes her own mind up before answering the questions. I am beginning to understand how much potential people who were born with Down Syndrome can have if the receive the right kind of support.

It is very moving when Andrea talks about how she was teased from childhood onwards, and it seems that these experiences made her stronger. Andrea is a brave woman and a great role model. Sarah Palin shouldn't allow Trig to become a victim, but she should steer him in a direction which will give him strength and independence, like Andrea has achieved it together with the help of her parents.



This is a preview of the documentary: "A possible dream - The Andrea Friedman story":


In addition, please read HERE about Andrea Friedman as a keynote speaker.


Because of her television activities, Andrea is often invited to be a motivational speaker and supporter of causes that help other challenged people. She has spoken to many local, statewide, national and international organizations, including the students and faculty at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education, on the subject of the advantage of a “mainstream” education for people with learning disabilities.

Andrea’s life is certainly very different from that which was predicted when she was born. She lives independently. When she is not acting, she works in the accounting department of a major law firm. She drives her own car and manages her own schedule, budget, housekeeping and social life. Andrea says she has “Up” syndrome, not Down syndrome and wages a personal battle against the words “retarded” and “disabled.” “I am challenged, not disabled,” she insists. “‘Disabled’ means ‘cannot do’, but my challenged friends and I can do. Some things are hard for us, some things take longer to learn; but if we work hard, we can do.” Andrea does work hard and every morning announces, “I love my life. I wonder how many new friends I’ll make today.”