Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Sarah Palin's resignation - an alternative scenario

Sarah Palin hugs Sean Parnell (aka Captain Zero) after her resignation

I was discussing Sarah Palin's resignation with my husband and he said something interesting. So far, we all thought she quit to make money without the responsibility of being governor and all the ethics problems that came with it.

Consider the following scenario:

Peter thinks she was pushed and the money making opportunity was the carrot to entice her away from the job. She did have ambitions for higher office and serving her full term would have been preferable to quitting, whether she hated the job or not. Somebody made that decision for her, not for her benefit, but for the benefit of "business as usual" in Alaska.

We have been looking at various aspects of politics in Alaska for over two years now and the picture is not a pretty one. Big oil and corruption play a major part in the emerging picture. Sarah Palin was just another Alaskan politician, with the same agenda as many others over there, but she was attracting too much attention to various shenanigans. Whereas before she hit the headlines shady deals could be conducted under the radar, after she became the focus of so much interest these practices were at risk of becoming too apparent. Somebody wanted her out. Parnell attracts as much attention as a wet rag, the ideal low-profile politician for Alaska.

So off she went to screech around the Lower 48, always colourful, always loud, tweets, Facebook notes, book tours, appearances on Fox News, big hair, short skirts, outrageous shoes and a scandal or two made for the perfect distraction. Sarah Palin's bank account is healthier than before and it all looks above board. While we follow her antics, nobody is paying attention to the business as usual back in Alaska (apart from the Alaskans who always paid attention), it's too boring...

Parnell and his gang are quietly doing many things Sarah Palin couldn't do, such as cutting the taxes for big oil. She took them on, remember? It became part of her maverick image, so she couldn't go back on her position without it looking like a major flip-flop. Sarah Palin's image and the attention she attracted had become a liability, she had to go.

Whoever decided her future was very much aware that she couldn't reasonably aspire to higher office (even if she still has such illusions herself) and made her an offer she couldn't refuse. Sarah Palin walked away from her job looking like the cat who got the cream and the Alaska old boys club breathed a collective sigh of relief.

Here's an example of something that happened around the time of her resignation: The granting of $193 million dollars in cash tax credits to fifteen oil and gas companies. On June 10, 2009, Sarah Palin had met with executives from Exxon in Dallas and had also stayed in Giddings, Texas, for a few days. On June 13, Sarah Pac received some generous donations from people in and around Giddings, with connections to the oil and gas industries. The tax break for the fifteen companies was announced on July 10, one week after Sarah Palin handed in her notice.

Andree McLeod tried to obtain the names of these lucky companies but was given some lame excuse about confidentiality.

Unfortunately, the story didn't make a big splash, perhaps because it didn't involve Sarah Palin. People are not interested in Pat Galvin or Sean Parnell, who are they? Are they sexy, do they sell magazines, make the headlines, have their own reality shows? Do their families grace the pages of the tabloids? Do they have bloggers dedicating their sites to investigating their every move?

No? How very convenient...

Curiosity: Number of results on Google search


Thank goodness for the Alaskan bloggers! Mudflats has a very important post about Parnell and Big Oil. Please don't miss it.

Shanny Moore weighed in as well.