Thursday, 11 August 2011

Sarah Palin's grifting - The evolution

While Sarah Palin appeals for help in a legal case and continues to sting the palinbots for donations to Sarah Pac, I thought it would be interesting to chart the evolution of her grifting ways.


Per diem and children's travel

Sarah Palin billed the state for 312 nights spent in her own home during her first 19 months in office, charging a “per diem” allowance intended to cover meals and incidental expenses while traveling on state business. She also charged for travel expenses to take her children and husband on “official out-of-town missions.”

Property taxes

Sarah Palin failed to pay property taxes on her cabin, allowing honest taxpayers to foot the bill for the services her family enjoyed.


Alaska Fund Trust

The Alaska Fund Trust document included a clause regarding rights of withdrawal up to the maximum yearly amount to fall within the Federal Gift Tax exclusion. It applies to each beneficiary and shall be exercisable only by written notice to Trustee of the amount Donee wishes to withdraw, but no purpose for said withdrawal need be shown.

The sole trustee was Kristan Cole, Sarah Palin's long term friend, former beauty queen and one of the stars of Dairygate.

Here are some of the potential opportunities to benefit from taxpayers and other money:


Housegate is a favourite with many readers as a potential means to use taxpayers money (as building materials) on Sarah Palin's house. It's been claimed that Todd and his buddies built it, but Sarah Palin suspended the requirement for building permits, so nobody knows if that's true.


A lot of money changed hands in the Dairygate affair, not to mention at least a million dollars worth of equipment that went missing before the official auction.

Ted Steven's 527

Palin Served As Director Of ‘Ted Stevens Excellence In Public Service’ 527. Palin’s name was listed on 2003 incorporation papers of the “Ted Stevens Excellence in Public Service, Inc.,” a 527 group that could raise unlimited funds from corporate donors. She also “served as one of three directors until June 2005, when her name was replaced on state filings.”

Unlimited funds from corporate donors... hmmm, sounds juicy!

Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend

Alaska Permanent Fund dividend checks barely made it out on time last year after a computer technician accidentally wiped out a data file containing hundreds of thousands of dividend applications.

Recovering from the Permanent Fund Division data loss involved calling in temporary workers to reconstruct lost data. Applications from the increasing number of applications filed online were able to be recovered; but paper applications had to be reconstructed by hand.

Sarah Palin refused to allow disclosure of the mandated state audit report on the computer failure.

Juneau freelance reporter Bob Tkacz was one of the reporters asking for the transition reports.

"No other governor in my experience has ever kept those reports confidential, and certainly never censored them in the way the Palin administration did," he said.

The Permanent Fund Division is still run by Debbie Bitney (formerly Richter), who also ran Sarah Palin's Inaugural Committee from her private business address.

The list of potencial sources of money is pure speculation, as there's no proof Sarah Palin helped herself to any of it. It only becomes relevant to any discussion because of her proven tendency to feel entitled to taxpayers money, as shown in the modest grifting section. Sarah herself is fond of saying that there are no coincidences.



The taste for big time grifting came from at least $250,000 worth of very nice clothes, including underwear for the whole family (somehow, the children kept losing theirs...).

Sarah Palin Legal Defense Fund

This new legal fund doesn't seem too popular. The website is never updated, there are no progress reports and we still don't know if the people who donated to the old illegal fund received their money back.

Sarah Pac

It looks like Sarah Palin now favours less dodgy ways to get her hands on other people's money. Sarah Pac has had its fair share of accounting discrepancies, but we could try to be charitable and put it down to sheer incompetence...

Sarah Palin couldn't resist another dose of Alaska's taxpayers money for the latest lawsuit (old habits are hard to shake), but the real money now comes from people too stupid to know they're being taken for a ride.

That's progress!