Category Archives: Sarah Palin – Religion

Sarah Palin Pastor’s Re-Education Scheme “May Seem Like Totalitarianism”

While Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin has recently raised the specter of totalitarian government by warning about “death panels” she claims are part of the Obama administration’s health care plan, Palin herself has ties to a prominent Christian pastor who publicly advocates the establishment of a government regime that, in his own words, “may seem like totalitarianism” and would re-educate citizens in ‘correct’ decision making — an approach reminiscent of re-education campaigns during the violence-wracked Chinese communist Cultural Revolution.

Last March, Sarah Palin enjoyed an extended telephone consultation and pep talk with Morningstar Ministries founder and head Rick Joyner, who has contacts among Republicans in Congress and whose ministry is closely tied to Palin’s most important Alaskan church, the Wasilla Assembly of God.

Even some of Sarah Palin’s most dedicated fans might be taken aback by Joyner’s enthusiastic advocacy for an authoritarian religious state. In a “prophecy” published June 19, 2007, Rick Joyner wrote, “The kingdom of God will not be socialism, but a freedom even greater than anyone on earth knows at this time. At first it may seem like totalitarianism … Instead of taking away liberties and becoming more domineering, the kingdom will move from a point of necessary control while people are learning truth, integrity, honor, and how to make decisions, to increasing liberty so that they can.”

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Is Gov. Palin a Member of ‘Spiritual Warfare’ Prayer Group?

Mary Glazier

Mary Glazier

An Alaskan “Strategic Prayer Network” leader, Mary Glazier, who claims to be a “witch-hunter,” says Palin is part of her “prayer group.”  Bruce Wilson, writing for AlterNet.org, lies out the case for concerns every voter should have in this vice presidential candidate’s objectivity in the seperation of church and state.

Please Note: The video posted with this article is silent for the first 45 seconds. Please watch it in its entirety if you are interested in hearing Mary Glazier’s claims.

“I believe in warfare. We were given an assignment in Alaska … we had the very liberal candidates running for governor, and we began to pray for God to give us a Christian,” declared Mary Glazier. At a three day religious conference held in Everett, Washington last summer, on June 13, 2008, Glazier described how, nearly two decades ago, her movement helped propel Alaska Independence Party candidate Walter J. Hickel, in an upset write-in campaign, into the Alaska governor’s office: Glazier’s new prayer group member, a 24 year old woman named Sarah Palin, would later follow.

Like Thomas Muthee, Mary Glazier describes waging personal battles against witches and witchcraft and, also like Muthee, Mary Glazier appears to have a special religious connection to Sarah Palin. Bishop Thomas Muthee, in an October 2005 ceremony at the Wasilla Assembly of God, anointed and blessed Sarah Palin as a political leader.

On June 13, 2008 Mary Glazier told attendees at the “Opening the Gate of Heaven on Earth” conference, who represented many of the New Apostolic Reformation’s top leaders, that she had been present at the inception of Sarah Palin’s political career and that Palin was in her personal prayer group :

There was a twenty-four year old woman that God began to speak to about entering into politics. She became a part of our prayer group out in Wasilla. Years later, became the mayor of Wasilla. And last year was elected Governor of the state of Alaska. Yes! Hallelujah! At her inauguration she dedicated the state to Jesus Christ. Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

The good news spread through New Apostolic Reformation networks:

“Sarah Palin er bønnegriger og pinsevenn!” wrote Pastor Jan-Aage Torp excitedly in a September 6, 2008 post on his blog: “Palin is a Prayer Warrior and Pentecostal!”

Pastor Torp of Oslo, Norway, is an Apostle in C. Peter Wagner’s International Coalition of Apostles, a network of about 500 apostles in the United States and 42 other nations. Torp reported in Norwegian that he had been visiting C. Peter Wagner and Wagner’s wife Doris during the previous week, at the time when Palin was named as a vice-presidential candidate. Torp noted the excitement about Palin in the media but pointed out an interesting thing he said has not received much attention in the US — that Sarah Palin is a member of the prayer networks under Peter Wagner and his Alaska prayer-leader, Mary Glazier.

Mary Glazier is one of the Prophets of Wagner’s inner circle of leadership, the Apostolic Council of Prophetic Elders. The New Apostolic Reformation is the name that Wagner has given to the structure that he formed in the late 1990s to bring together numerous strands of the “Third Wave of the Holy Spirit” into a distinct and identifiable structure. The June 13, 2008, “Opening the Gate for Heaven on Earth: Receiving the New Prophetic Wind for Increase” conference, in Everett, Washington, was attended by Wagner and his top Apostles and Prophets. Mary Glazier is the Alaska state leader of Wagner’s U.S. Strategic Prayer Network.

Sarah Palin has been anointed through the laying on of hands in at least four publicized ceremonies. Three of these have been captured on existing video or photographs — including the photographs posted on the official State of Alaska site. Currently the most widely published account is the video of the anointing by Kenyan pastor Thomas Muthee at the Wasilla Assembly of God before Palin was elected governor of Alaska.

While a number of media outlets have featured stories of Muthee’s witch hunting exploits in Kiambu, Bishop Muthee is not just any witch hunter. He is internationally known for his starring role in the Transformations I video, produced in 1999, as one of the definitive media tools for the new evangelizing efforts of the Third Wave and the resulting New Apostolic Reformation.

The New Apostolic Reformation is now a distinct entity with its own theology, apostolic networks, schools, school accreditation system, conferences, and media. The Apostolic structure, as defined by Wagner, provides a network of authority or “apostolic covering.” Each of Wagner’s approximately 500 Apostles has networks of their own, some claiming hundreds or even thousands of ministries under their authority. They view themselves as conducting “the most radical restructuring of Christianity since the Reformation” and believe they are unifying an end time church that will harvest millions of souls before the return of Jesus.

The New Apostolics have developed a unique set of evangelizing tools and terms based on the concept of spiritual mapping and the expulsion of demons. This is for the specific purpose of conquering cities that are resisting the gospel due to the presence of territorial demons and generational curses. These concepts have been marketed through media and videos including the Transformations videos, produced by George Otis, Jr. of the Sentinel Group, which were developed to document what the videos claimed were successful transformations of entire communities through “spiritual warfare” and other of Wagner’s new evangelizing technologies. The videos have reinforced the ultimate in faith-based social policy arguments – that human improvement of society is not possible without the supernatural intervention of God and that this intervention can only happen when groups of “Spirit-filled” Christians unite to chase the demons out of their communities and to take authority away from those who are not “born again.”

C. Peter Wagner declared 2001 as the beginning of the New Apostolic Age, but by 1999 the movement was already coalescing around the new spiritual warfare theology presented in the Transformations video and related books. Thomas Muthee has played a key role as an example of the success that can be achieved through the expulsion of demons from communities.

This spiritual warfare was not limited to Africa. The Transformations I video also featured Almolonga, Guatemala; Cali, Colombia; and Hemet, California. In Hemet, spiritual warriors supposedly succeeded in burning down a Transcendental Meditation center through spiritual mapping and prayer. In the video, narrator George Otis and participating local ministers claim that the area was transformed when “Spirit-filled Christians” took control of the government and public schools. [See the article Palin, Muthee, and the Witch-Journalists Miss the Major Story for more on the Transformations video]. This and subsequent video productions were shown around the world and the media effort spawned a number of Transformation evangelizing conferences and networks. Transformation became a buzzword for the faith-based social programs built around the evangelizing of communities.

Transforming Melbourne is a city wide renewal group which prominently publicizes testimony of New Apostolic Prophetess Ana Mendez. Mendez participated with Wagner’s wife Doris and other top Apostles and Prophets on a 1997 mission to the Himalayas named “Operation Ice Castle.” This was a spiritual warfare venture to combat the chief of all territorial demons, the “Queen of Heaven.” Wagner would later write a bout this excursion in his books, “Confronting the Queen of Heaven,” and “The Queen’s Domain,” concerning the demon he believes is responsible for preventing acceptance of the gospel in Roman Catholic Churches as well as Islam. Mendez’s testimony of the event publicized on Transforming Melbourne, and other sites, includes her belief that their prayer expedition may have had many successful results including the death of Mother Theresa.

Glazier’s sermon, which featured her comments on Palin, was given at a conference Opening the Gate of Heaven on Earth, that also featured a number of speeches and sermons–on the plans of leaders of the New Apostolic Reformation to take control of society and government through their “Seven Mountains Strategy.” These efforts to take control of religion, family, education, arts and entertainment, media, government, and business are clearly defined in their publicity and in numerous conferences on their efforts. Thomas Muthee quite plainly laid out the need to take over the seven “kingdoms” in the short sermon, or speech, Muthee gave before the anointing of Sarah Palin.

A striking feature of the ministries of the New Apostolic Reformation is their use of militant terminology. Diane Buker, the state leader for Florida is head of a ministry titled Battle Axe Brigade. The website features an animated arm swinging a mace as well as articles claiming that Roman Catholicism and Mormonism are corrupt religious systems and that Roman Catholicism is bound by a religious spirit.

Cindy Jacobs, another Prophetic Elder, has a ministry titled Generals of Intercession and Jacobs has authored books such as Possessing the Gates of the Enemy, a Training Manual for Militant Intercession. Ana Mendez (Ferrell), a Prophetess in the Wagner Apostolic network system, believes she may have helped kill Mother Theresa.

George Otis included an entire glossary on new spiritual warfare terms in the back of his book “Informed Intercession.” Ed Kalnins of Wasilla Assembly of God and Thomas Muthee, both of whom have anointed Palin, include exhortations of violence in their sermons. Like many others in the movement they prominently feature the biblical quote “the violent take it by force” in their rhetoric on spiritual warfare.

The New Apostolic Reformation leadership claims that its militant sounding terminology only applies to spiritual warfare and not physical warfare against human beings. Apostle Tim Taylor attended the US Naval War College Strategies and Policy Course and applies this knowledge in his spiritual warfare book, “Operation Rolling Thunder.” He includes, on some of his Watchman Ministries pages, a disclaimer–that spiritual warfare must not confuse battle against demonic forces with people. But sometimes spiritual warfare becomes physical conflict, as in the case of, the old woman in Thomas Muthee’s Nairobi suburb of Kiambu, accused of witchcraft and then hounded out of town. Mary Glazier has her own witch hunting story and, like Muthee, Glazier also believes that the removal of the witch from the geographic area was required in order for the community to be transformed. “Spirit Led Woman” magazine in 2003 wrote about Glazier’s claim of chasing the witch from Alaska through spiritual warfare:

In 1995, Mary mobilized a prayer network for Alaska’s prisons and began experiencing spiritual warfare as never before. She had received word that a witch had applied for a job as chaplain of the state’s prison system … Mary recalls, “As we continued to pray against the spirit of witchcraft, her incense altar caught on fire, her car engine blew up, she went blind in her left eye, and she was diagnosed with cancer.Ultimately, the witch fled to another state for medical treatment. Soon after, revival visited every prison in Alaska. At the women’s correctional facility in Anchorage alone, 55 of 60 inmates found Christ. “Ask largely,” Mary says. “Intercessory prayer is making a major difference in North America.”

The participants of this movement really do believe that their prayers are the cause of destruction of property and injury, or perhaps even the death, of others like Mother Theresa and Princess Diana. And they do clearly profess to believe that others will be forced to accept their beliefs or be destroyed.

As Mary Glazer told Peter Wagner and the other New Apostolic Reformation leaders at the June 12-14 “Opening the Gate of Heaven on Earth” conference:

There is a tipping point, at which, at which time, because of the sin of the land, the people then have to be displaced … God is preparing a people to displace the ones whose sin is rising so that then they tip over and the church goes in – one is removed and the church moves in and takes the territory. Now, that does not mean that the people are removed, because God removes them from the Kingdom of Darkness into the Kingdom of Light. They are given an opportunity to change allegiances.

For more information on other links between Sarah Palin and the New Apostolic Reformation, see Palin and the Apostles at and the entire ongoing series of articles, Palin’s Churches and the Third Wave.

Bruce Wilson writes for Talk To Action, a blog specializing in faith and politics.

Is Palin a Member of ‘Spiritual Warfare’ Prayer Group?

Jewish Voters Find it Hard to Vote for Palin

Sen. John McCain & Gov. Sarah Palin

Sen. John McCain & Gov. Sarah Palin

In an opinion piece published in The Morning Call today, Richard Kohn considers the difficulties many Jewish voters have with the candidacy of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin as the Republican vice presidential running mate of Senator John McCain.

There has been much said about both candidates courting the Jewish vote. The truth is, the Republicans are just talk in this area. If John McCain had any respect for the Jews in America, he wouldn’t have chosen Sarah Palin as a running mate.

The executive director of the National Jewish Democratic Council, Ira Forman, cited a ”cultural distance” between Palin and almost all American Jews. ”She’s totally out of step with the American Jewish community,” he said.

Palin’s social conservatism, her paper-thin record on Israel, and — perhaps most importantly — her cultural roots in evangelical Christianity may be a major turnoff to Jewish voters. Just a few weeks ago, Palin’s church, the Wasilla Bible Church, gave its pulpit over to David Brickner, the executive director of Jews for Jesus, a ministry that has drawn wide criticism from the organized Jewish community and the Anti-Defamation League.

As Gov. Palin sat unprotesting in her church, Brickner described terrorist attacks on Israelis as God’s ”judgment of unbelief” on Jews who haven’t embraced Christianity.

Florida Rep. Robert Wexler has attacked Palin for appearing at a 1999 event with Pat Buchanan — who has attacked the influence of ”the Israeli lobby” in America.

Barack Obama‘s choice for VP may be Catholic, but Joe Biden is a long-time friend of Israel. Neither he nor Sen. Obama have any intention of pushing their religious views on others.

Jewish Voters Find it Hard to Vote for Palin

Mean Girl: Sarah Palin Has a Way of Using “Old Boys” — Then Dumping Them When They Become Inconvenient.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in Detroit Sept. 5, 2008.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin in Detroit Sept. 5, 2008.

Remember the beautiful, yet back-stabbing, bitchy girls in high school who were always able to twist the guys around their little finger and get whatever they wanted?  As more is revealed of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin’s character throughout her political career in Alaska, there seems to be too many parallels to those girls we all hoped to never deal with again after high school graduation.  In an excellent piece by Salon.com founder David Talbot published September 23, 2008, Gov. Sarah Palin’s behavior towards male political mentors and claims to shaking up the “old boys” network are turned upside down, leaving us all wondering, do we really want to go back to high school?

Before Sarah Palin decided to run for the Wasilla mayor’s office in 1996 against incumbent John Stein, the Palins and Steins were friends. John Stein had helped launch Palin’s political career, mentoring the hockey mom during her 1994 run for City Council, along with veteran council member Nick Carney. Stein’s wife, Karen Marie, went to aerobics classes with Palin.

But when she announced her candidacy for Stein’s seat, vowing to overturn the city’s “old boy” establishment, a different Sarah Palin emerged. “Things got very ugly,” recalled Naomi Tigner, a friend of the Steins. “Sarah became very mean-spirited.”

The Wasilla mayor’s seat is nonpartisan, and Mayor Stein, a former city planner who had held the post for nine years, ran a businesslike campaign that stressed his experience and competency. But Palin ignited the traditionally low-key race with scorching social issues, injecting “God, guns and abortion into the race — things that had nothing to do with being mayor of a small town,” according to Tigner.

Palin’s mayoral campaign rode the wave of conservative, evangelical fervor that was sweeping Alaska in the ’90s. Suddenly candidates’ social values, not their ability to manage the roads and sewer systems, were dominating the debate. “Sarah and I were both Republicans, but this was an entirely new slant to local politics — much more aggressive than anything I’d ever seen,” said Stein, looking back at the election that put Palin on the political map.

There was a knife-sharp, personal edge to Palin’s campaign that many locals found disturbing, particularly because of the warm relationship between Palin and Stein before the race.

“I called Sarah’s campaign for mayor the end of the age of innocence in Wasilla,” said Carney.

Even though Palin knew that Stein is a Protestant Christian, from a Pennsylvania Dutch background, her campaign began circulating the word that she would be “Wasilla’s first Christian mayor.” Some of Stein’s supporters interpreted this as an attempt to portray Stein as Jewish in the heavily evangelical community. Stein himself, an eminently reasonable and reflective man, thinks “they were redefining Christianity to mean born-agains.”

The Palin campaign also started another vicious whisper campaign, spreading the word that Stein and his wife — who had chosen to keep her own last name when they were married — were not legally wed. Again, Palin knew the truth, Stein said, but chose to muddy the waters. “We actually had to produce our marriage certificate,” recalled Stein, whose wife died of breast cancer in 2005 without ever reconciling with Palin.

“I had a hand in creating Sarah, but in the end she blew me out of the water,” Stein said, sounding more wearily ironic than bitter. “Sarah’s on a mission, she’s an opportunist.”

According to some political observers in Alaska, this pattern — exploiting “old-boy” mentors and then turning against them for her own advantage — defines Sarah Palin’s rise to power. Again and again, Palin has charmed powerful political patrons, and then rejected them when it suited her purposes. She has crafted a public image as a clean politics reformer, but in truth, she has only blown the whistle on political corruption when it was expedient for her to do so. Above all, Palin is a dynamo of ambition, shrewdly maneuvering her way through the notoriously compromised world of Alaska politics, making and breaking alliances along the way.

With its frontier political infrastructure and its geyser of oil money, Alaska has become as notorious as a third-world petro-kingdom. In recent years, scandal has seeped throughout the state’s political circles — and at the center of this widening spill is Alaska’s powerful patronage king, Republican Sen. Ted Stevens, and wealthy oil contractor Bill Allen.

Despite Palin’s reform reputation, she has maintained a delicate relationship with Stevens over the years — courting his endorsement for governor, then distancing herself after his 2007 federal indictment on corruption charges, and then cozying up again when it appeared he might survive politically. As for Allen — the former oil roughneck whose North Slope wealth has greased many a palm in Alaska — Palin found nothing wrong with his money when she ran for lieutenant governor in 2002.

Palin’s reputation as a reformer stems primarily from her headline-grabbing ouster of state GOP chairman Randy Ruedrich from the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission for flagrant conflict-of-interest abuses. At the time, Palin was heralded in the press as a whistle-blower, but it was later revealed that she was guilty of the same charge that she had brought against Ruedrich — using state office equipment for partisan political business. (While still mayor of Wasilla, she sent out campaign fundraising appeals from her office during her race for lieutenant governor.)

Others suspect that Palin had self-serving reasons for taking on Ruedrich and resigning her seat on the commission. The state energy panel had ignited a public firestorm in Palin’s home base, Mat-Su Valley, by secretly leasing sub-surface drilling rights on thousands of residential lots to a Colorado-based gas producer. Outraged farmers and homeowners, who woke up one morning to find drilling equipment being hauled onto their land, were in open revolt against the commission. While Palin initially supported the leasing plan, she was shrewd enough to realize it was political suicide to alienate conservative property owners in her own district. According to some accounts, she was also growing tired of commuting to state offices in Anchorage and poring over dry, tedious technical manuals for her job. All in all, it seemed like the right move to jump ship — and going out a hero was an added plus.

In the end, Ruedrich admitted wrongdoing and settled the ethics case by paying $12,000 in civil fines. But Palin did not drive the well-connected Republican operative into exile. In fact, he remains the party’s state chairman and he could be seen on the floor of the Republican convention in St. Paul, Minn., hugging the newly crowned vice-presidential candidate and cheering her feisty speech against greedy old boys like, well, him.

“The idea that Sarah shook up the state’s old-boy network is one big fantasy, it’s complete bullshit,” Andrew Halcro said. “She got all this public acclaim for throwing people who backed her under the bus — but she only did it after they became expendable, when she no longer needed them.

“The good old boys in Alaska are still the good old boys — they’re alive and kicking. Randy is still running the Republican Party — he wasn’t happy about being turned into a national poster boy for corruption, but he went along with the program. Ted Stevens is still running for reelection. And [scandal-tainted Alaska Rep.] Don Young is, too. So where’s the new era of change that Palin supposedly brought to Alaska?”

Mean Girl: Sarah Palin Has a Way of Using “Old Boys” — Then Dumping Them When They Become Inconvenient.

Ed Schultz Town Hall in Alaska “Come Talk about Sarah Palin”

The Nation was one of the very few main stream media publications to cover the recent Anchorage Alaska Town Hall Meeting featuring Alaska citizens voicing their opinions on GOP vice presidential nominee Alaska Governor Sarah Palin.  The successful meeting was hosted by progressive radio host Ed Schultz.  In an article posted by John Nichols on September 14, 2008, highlights of the meeting are examined for the American voters. ~ Sarah Palin Truth Squad

Ed Schultz, the nationally syndicated radio host, came to Alaska looking to find out about Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin.

The North Dakota-based progressive talker got an earful.

What Schultz heard is that, despite all the talk about Palin’s 80 percent approval rating, plenty of Alaskans have qualms about putting their state’s governor a heartbeat away from the presidency.

“The Republicans have taken this election and turned it into an ‘American Idol’ episode,” said Terry Hamm, one of more than 500 people from the Anchorage area who showed up for the town hall meeting Schultz hosted Saturday night with the help of radio station KUDO-Alaska’s Progressive Voice. “They took the pretty girl and made her the candidate.”

“There are a lot of smart, capable women in the Republican party that John McCain could have chosen as his running-mate: (Maine Senator) Olympia Snowe, (Maine Senator) Susan Collins,” continued Hamm, as she waited in line to speak at the event on the University of Alaska-Anchorage campus. “But Sarah Palin isn’t one of them. She’s not ready to be vice president, let alone president.”

That was the tenor of the talk Saturday night, at a “Come Talk about Sarah Palin” event where Schultz heard the other side of Alaska’s response to the governor’s addition to the Republican ticket.

Appearing on a day when a crowd estimated at 1,500 showed up for an “Alaskan Women Reject Palin” rally outside an Anchorage hall where the governor was speaking to her backers, Schultz heard a litany of complaints about the Republican nominee for vice president.

When the discussion turned to the “Troopergate” scandal, which has focused attention on Palin’s dismissal of the state’s top law enforcement officer after he refused to fire her former brother-in-law, Schultz asked: “If it is proven that the governor abused her position, how does the state respond to that?” asked Schultz.

“Impeachment!” responded members of the crowd.

But, while there is definitely a good deal of home-state pride in the nomination of the governor for the vice presidency, there is as well a fair measure of honest trepidation about whether this particular Alaskan is the right person for the job.

When Palin returned to Alaska after accepting the Republican nomination and making a series of high-profile campaign appearances with McCain, most of the attention was focused on the fact that the governor was finally sitting down for an interview with the anchor of a nationally-televised news program – an uninspired session with Charlie Gibson of ABC News – and rallying her supporters.

What was not so well reported was that, outside the controlled events at which Palin appeared, her critics rallied in significant numbers.

Many Palin protesters came to show support of the Democratic ticket of Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

Others showed up to raise concerns about Palin’s hard-line conservative stances on social issues and to express their fears about whether she would, as vice president and potentially president, blur the lines of separation between church and state.

Even the state’s largest newspaper, the Anchorage Daily News, weighed in on that issue, editorializing that, “While it’s exciting to have Alaska’s popular governor on the Republican presidential ticket – and a woman to boot – Americans can’t ignore how Sarah Palin might steer the country on divisive social issues.”

The editorial continued, “Sarah Palin is asking Americans to elect a vice president who is an extreme social conservative. She opposes abortion rights. She favors the teaching of creationism. She preaches abstinence-only sex education. She is open to the possibility of banning books from public libraries. She opposes gay marriage. She personally opposes benefits for gay partners of public employees.”

“(If) she becomes president,” the newspaper warned, “Palin will have plenty of time and a national platform to promote measures that turn her personal stands on social issues into mandates for all Americans. Religious conservatives may insist that she do so. Will she? Her past statements suggest she would.”

Still other critics suggested that Palin, who was elected governor of Alaska less than two years ago, simply is not ready to take the nation’s No. 2 job.

“(In) no way does her year-and-a-half as governor of Alaska qualify her to be vice president or president of the United States,” wrote veteran Alaskan journalist Dermot Cole in his Fairbanks News-Miner newspaper column after Plain was picked.

“I may be proven wrong, but the decision announced by McCain strikes me as reckless,” added Cole. “She is not prepared to be the next president should something happen to McCain.”

That was certainly the sentiment of those who showed up for Ed Schultz’s Saturday night gathering.

Schultz was struck by the intensity of the Alaskan concern about Palin.

“We all know people in Alaska who have good things to say about Sarah Palin. We’ve heard from them.” explained the radio host. “But it turns out that there are a lot of people who are as worried as the rest of us are about Sarah Palin becoming vice president.”

Ed Schultz Town Hall in Alaska “Come Talk about Sarah Palin”

Ed Schultz town hall meeting on Governor Sarah Palin in Anchorage Alaska

About Sarah Palin: A Open Letter From Anne Kilkenny of Wasilla, Alaska

Wasilla, Alaska resident Anne Kilkenny wrote an extremely comprehensive, objective letter on the history of Mayor Sarah Palin and her political career starting in Wasilla, Alaska.  This letter has been published on a variety of internet forums and blogs nationwide over the past two weeks, but it is worth reprinting here for anyone who missed reading it the first time around.  Anne Kilkenny is a homemaker and education advocate in Wasilla, Alaska.  The letter was originally written to friends of Ms. Kilkenny, in which she shares her thoughts and observation about vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, whom she has personally known for many years.  ~ Sarah Palin Truth Squad

Here below is Anne Kilkenny’s open letter in its entirety.

I am a resident of Wasilla, Alaska. I have known Sarah since 1992. Everyone here knows Sarah, so it is nothing special to say we are on a first-name basis. Our children have attended the same schools. Her father was my child’s favorite substitute teacher. I also am on a first name basis with her parents and mother-in-law. I attended more City Council meetings during her administration than about 99% of the residents of the city.

She is enormously popular; in every way she’s like the most popular girl in middle school. Even men who think she is a poor choice and won’t vote for her can’t quit smiling when talking about her because she is a “babe”.

It is astonishing and almost scary how well she can keep a secret. She kept her most recent pregnancy a secret from her children and parents for seven months. She is “pro-life”. She recently gave birth to a Down’s syndrome baby. There is no cover-up involved, here; Trig is her baby. She is energetic and hardworking. She regularly worked out at the gym.

She is savvy. She doesn’t take positions; she just “puts things out there” and if they prove to be popular, then she takes credit. Her husband works a union job on the North Slope for BP and is a champion snowmobile racer. Todd Palin’s kind of job is highly sought-after because of the schedule and high pay. He arranges his work schedule so he can fish for salmon in Bristol Bay for a month or so in summer, but by no stretch of the imagination is fishing their major source of income. Nor has her life-style ever been anything like that of native Alaskans. Sarah and her whole family are avid hunters. She’s smart.

Her experience is as mayor of a city with a population of about 5,000 (at the time), and less than 2 years as governor of a state with about 670,000 residents. During her mayoral administration most of the actual work of running this small city was turned over to an administrator. She had been pushed to hire this administrator by party power-brokers after she had gotten herself into some trouble over precipitous firings which had given rise to a recall campaign.

Sarah campaigned in Wasilla as a “fiscal conservative”. During her 6 years as Mayor, she increased general government expenditures by over 33%. During those same 6 years the amount of taxes collected by the City increased by 38%. This was during a period of low inflation (1996-2002). She reduced progressive property taxes and increased a regressive sales tax which taxed even food. The tax cuts that she promoted benefited large corporate property owners way more than they benefited residents.

The huge increases in tax revenues during her mayoral administration weren’t enough to fund everything on her wish list though, borrowed money was needed, too. She inherited a city with zero debt, but left it with indebtedness of over $22 million. What did Mayor Palin encourage the voters to borrow money for? Was it the infrastructure that she said she supported? The sewage treatment plant that the city lacked? or a new library? No. $1m for a park. $15m-plus for construction of a multi-use sports complex which she rushed through to build on a piece of property that the City didn’t even have clear title to, that was still in litigation 7 yrs later-to the delight of the lawyers involved! The sports complex itself is a nice addition to the community but a huge money pit, not the profit-generator she claimed it would be. She also supported bonds for $5.5m for road projects that could have been done in 5-7 yrs without any borrowing.

While Mayor, City Hall was extensively remodeled and her office redecorated more than once. These are small numbers, but Wasilla is a very small city. As an oil producer, the high price of oil has created a budget surplus in Alaska. Rather than invest this surplus in technology that will make us energy independent and increase efficiency, as Governor she proposed distribution of this surplus to every individual in the state.

In this time of record state revenues and budget surpluses, she recommended that the state borrow/bond for road projects, even while she proposed distribution of surplus state revenues: spend today’s surplus, borrow for needs.

She’s not very tolerant of divergent opinions or open to outside ideasor compromise. As Mayor, she fought ideas that weren’t generated by her or her staff. Ideas weren’t evaluated on their merits, but on the basis of who proposed them.

While Sarah was Mayor of Wasilla she tried to fire our highly respected City Librarian because the Librarian refused to consider removing from the library some books that Sarah wanted removed. City residents rallied to the defense of the City Librarian and against Palin’s attempt at out-and-out censorship, so Palin backed down and withdrew her termination letter. People who fought her attempt to oust the Librarian are on her enemies list to this day.

Sarah complained about the “old boy’s club” when she first ran for Mayor, so what did she bring Wasilla? A new set of “old boys”. Palin fired most of the experienced staff she inherited. At the City and as Governor she hired or elevated new, inexperienced, obscure people, creating a staff totally dependent on her for their jobs and eternally grateful and fiercely loyal-loyal to the point of abusing their power to further her personal agenda, as she has acknowledged happened in the case of pressuring the State’s top cop (see below).

As Mayor, Sarah fired Wasilla’s Police Chief because he “intimidated” her, she told the press. As Governor, her recent firing of Alaska’s top cop has the ring of familiarity about it. He served at her pleasure and she had every legal right to fire him, but it’s pretty clear that an important factor in her decision to fire him was because he wouldn’t fire her sister’s ex-husband, a State Trooper. Under investigation for abuse of power, she has had to admit that more than 2 dozen contacts were made between her staff and family to the person that she later fired, pressuring him to fire her ex-brother-in-law. She tried to replace the man she fired with a man who she knew had been reprimanded for sexual harassment; when this caused a public furor, she withdrew her support.

She has bitten the hand of every person who extended theirs to her in help. The City Council person who personally escorted her around town introducing her to voters when she first ran for Wasilla City Council became one of her first targets when she was later elected Mayor. She abruptly fired her loyal City Administrator; even people who didn’t like the guy were stunned by this ruthlessness.

Fear of retribution has kept all of these people from saying anything publicly about her.

When then-Governor Murkowski was handing out political plums, Sarah got the best, Chair of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission: one of the few jobs not in Juneau and one of the best paid. She had no background in oil & gas issues. Within months of scoring this great job which paid $122,400/yr, she was complaining in the press about the high salary. I was told that she hated that job: the commute, the structured hours, the work. Sarah became aware that a member of this Commission (who was also the State Chair of the Republican Party) engaged in unethical behavior on the job.

In a gutsy move which some undoubtedly cautioned her could be political suicide, Sarah solved all her problems in one fell swoop: got out of the job she hated and garnered gobs of media attention as the patron saint of ethics and as a gutsy fighter against the “old boys’ club” when she dramatically quit, exposing this man’s ethics violations (for which he was fined).

As Mayor, she had her hand stuck out as far as anyone for pork from Senator Ted Stevens. Lately, she has castigated his pork-barrel politics and publicly humiliated him. She only opposed the “bridge to nowhere” after it became clear that it would be unwise not to.

As Governor, she gave the Legislature no direction and budget guidelines, then made a big grandstand display of line-item vetoing projects, calling them pork. Public outcry and further legislative action restored most of these projects-which had been vetoed simply because she was not aware of their importance-but with the unobservant she had gained a reputation as “anti-pork”.

She is solidly Republican: no political maverick. The State party leaders hate her because she has bit them in the back and humiliated them. Other members of the party object to her self-description as a fiscal conservative.

Around Wasilla there are people who went to high school with Sarah.

They call her “Sarah Barracuda” because of her unbridled ambition and predatory ruthlessness. Before she became so powerful, very ugly stories circulated around town about shenanigans she pulled to be made point guard on the high school basketball team. When Sarah’s mother-in-law, a highly respected member of the community and experienced manager, ran for Mayor, Sarah refused to endorse her.

As Governor, she stepped outside of the box and put together of package of legislation known as “AGIA” that forced the oil companies to march to the beat of her drum.

Like most Alaskans, she favors drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. She has questioned if the loss of sea ice is linked toglobal warming. She campaigned “as a private citizen” against a state initiaitive that would have either a) protected salmon streams from pollution from mines, or b) tied up in the courts all mining in the state (depending on who you listen to). She has pushed the State’s lawsuit against the Dept. of the Interior’s decision to list polar bears as threatened species.

McCain is the oldest person to ever run for President; Sarah will be a heartbeat away from being President. There has to be literally millions of Americans who are more knowledgeable and experienced than she. However, there’s a lot of people who have underestimated her and are regretting it.

CLAIM VS FACT

  • “Hockey mom”: true for a few years
  • “PTA mom”: true years ago when her first-born was in elementary school, not since
  • “NRA supporter”: absolutely true
  • social conservative: mixed. Opposes gay marriage, BUT vetoed a bill that would have denied benefits to employees in same-sex relationships (said she did this because it was unconsitutional).
  • pro-creationism: mixed. Supports it, BUT did nothing as Governor to promote it.
  • “Pro-life”: mixed. Knowingly gave birth to a Down’s syndrome baby BUT declined to call a special legislative session on some pro-life legislation
  • “Experienced”: Some high schools have more students than Wasilla has residents. Many cities have more residents than the state of Alaska. No legislative experience other than City Council. Little hands-on supervisory or managerial experience; needed help of a city administrator to run town of about 5,000.
  • political maverick: not at all
  • gutsy: absolutely!
  • open & transparent: ??? Good at keeping secrets. Not good at explaining actions.
  • has a developed philosophy of public policy: no
  • “a Greenie”: no. Turned Wasilla into a wasteland of big box stores and disconnected parking lots. Is pro-drilling off-shore and in ANWR.
  • fiscal conservative: not by my definition!
  • pro-infrastructure: No. Promoted a sports complex and park in a city without a sewage treatment plant or storm drainage system. Built streets to early 20th century standards.
  • pro-tax relief: Lowered taxes for businesses, increased tax burden on residents
  • pro-small government: No. Oversaw greatest expansion of city government in Wasilla’s history.
  • pro-labor/pro-union. No. Just because her husband works union doesn’t make her pro-labor. I have seen nothing to support any claim that she is pro-labor/pro-union.

WHY AM I WRITING THIS?

First, I have long believed in the importance of being an informed voter. I am a voter registrar. For 10 years I put on student voting programs in the schools. If you google my name (Anne Kilkenny + Alaska), you will find references to my participation in local government, education, and PTA/parent organizations.

Secondly, I’ve always operated in the belief that “Bad things happen when good people stay silent”. Few people know as much as I do because few have gone to as many City Council meetings.

Third, I am just a housewife. I don’t have a job she can bump me out of. I don’t belong to any organization that she can hurt. But, I am no fool; she is immensely popular here, and it is likely that this will cost me somehow in the future: that’s life.

Fourth, she has hated me since back in 1996, when I was one of the 100 or so people who rallied to support the City Librarian against Sarah’s attempt at censorship.

Fifth, I looked around and realized that everybody else was afraid to say anything because they were somehow vulnerable.

CAVEATS

I am not a statistician. I developed the numbers for the increase in spending & taxation 2 years ago (when Palin was running for Governor) from information supplied to me by the Finance Director of the City of Wasilla, and I can’t recall exactly what I adjusted for: did I adjust for inflation? for population increases? Right now, it is impossible for a private person to get any info out of City Hall-they are swamped. So I can’t verify my numbers.

You may have noticed that there are various numbers circulating for the population of Wasilla, ranging from my “about 5,000″, up to 9,000. The day Palin’s selection was announced a city official told me that the current population is about 7,000. The official 2000 census count was 5,460. I have used about 5,000 because Palin was Mayor from 1996 to 2002, and the city was growing rapidly in the mid-90’s.

About Sarah Palin: A Letter From Anne Kilkenny

About Sarah Palin: an e-mail from Wasilla

Ms. Palins critics say too much growth too quickly has made a mess of what not long ago was homesteaded farmland.

Wasilla Alaska rural farmland: Ms. Palin's critics say too much growth too quickly has made a mess of what not long ago was homesteaded farmland.

Governor Sarah Palin Slashed Funding for Teen Moms & Community Food Bank in April 2008

As reported in the Washington Post on September 2, 2008 by Paul Kane, just this past April 2008 Alaska Governor Sarah Palin cut funding to Covenant House in Alaska, which provides shelters and educational programs to teen mothers and their babies.  Palin also cut the funding by 50% to the Fairbanks Community Food Bank, which “collects and redistributes donated food to individuals and agencies.” ~ Sarah Palin Truth Squad

After the legislature passed a spending bill in April, Palin went through the measure reducing and eliminating funds for programs she opposed. Inking her initials on the legislation — “SP” — Palin reduced funding for Covenant House Alaska by more than 20 percent, cutting funds from $5 million to $3.9 million. Covenant House is a mix of programs and shelters for troubled youths, including Passage House, which is a transitional home for teenage mothers.

According to Passage House’s web site, its purpose is to provide “young mothers a place to live with their babies for up to eighteen months while they gain the necessary skills and resources to change their lives” and help teen moms “become productive, successful, independent adults who create and provide a stable environment for themselves and their families.”

Earlier today the Associated Press reported that Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, opposed funding to prevent teen pregnancies, a position that Palin also took as governor. “The explicit sex-ed programs will not find my support,” she wrote in a 2006 questionnaire distributed among gubernatorial candidates.

Reporters asked McCain in November 2007 whether he supported grants for sex education in the United States, whether such programs should include directions for using contraceptives and whether he supports President Bush’s policy of promoting abstinence.

“Ahhh, I think I support the president’s policy,” McCain said.

Palin Slashed Funding for Teen Moms

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin slashed funding for teen moms in April, 2008

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin slashed funding for teen moms in April, 2008