Todd Palin

Why is Sarah silent about her newest grandchild? UPDATE://Kyla Grace was, in fact, born on Saturday, Aug. 6, 2011


A commenter here says Kyla Grace Palin was actually born on Saturday, not yesterday.

I received a phone call around noon on Saturday that Britta’s baby girl had been born – around 6 1/2 pounds.
The birth had gone very quickly so much so that Britta’s dad didn’t make it to the hospital in time. It makes me sad for her that Palin’s control of Wasilla is so intense that people can’t share in her joy. I know that the friends at church heard about the happy event but people are afraid to say anything.

This makes it even more strange that Sarah and Todd have not welcomed their first granddaughter into the world with a joyous public announcement.

It would hardly be an invasion of Track and Britta’s privacy for the grandparents–on either side–to announce the birth.

And it’s hardly a secret.  My mention of it here this morning led to national and worldwide coverage, including in Sarah’s favorite glossy magazine/website People.

So why the prolonged silence from Wasilla?  Could Sarah possibly be embarrassed that her two oldest children have now followed in her footsteps by conceiving babies outside of–to use a good ole’ 19th Century word–wedlock?

Or is she planning to announce the birth to Greta Van Susteren on Fox News?

Or, just maybe, is she still negotiating her fee for the first photo of her holding her first granddaughter?


I’ve just received confirmation that Kyla Grace Palin was, in fact, born last Saturday, not Sunday, as I first posted.  Which means it’s now going on three days without Sarah–so quick to parade Trig in public–or Bristol–so quick to put her own baby on a book cover–even publicly recognizing the existence of Kyla Grace.

Someday, this beautiful infant will become a young woman able to research facts about her own birth.  How will she feel when she finds that her once-famous grandmother tried to suppress the news that she was born?

FYI: my CONDE NAST PORTFOLIO piece about Sarah and failed gas pipeline

I’ve gotten some queries about this, so for those of you who haven’t found it elsewhere on my website or on the internet, this is my March, 2009, cover story about Sarah and her failed attempt (which at the GOP convention in 2008 she claimed as a success) to create an Alaskan natural gas pipeline:

I think I recall that Sarah called it “yellow journalism,” or something equally felicitous.

I know I recall that when Todd and I had our face-to-face encounter in my back yard on Lake Lucille, on Monday, May 24, 2010, he called the story a “bunch of crap,” “a bunch of lies,” and “a bunch of bullshit.”

Those Palins sure have a way with words, don’t they?

By the way, Sarah, how’s that AGIA stuff workin’ for you now?

Rosanne Cash tells what a caring, truly pregnant mother would have done in Texas









Johnny Cash was and is one of my few heroes.  My admiration for him is based not only on my appreciation of his unique talent as singer, songwriter and performer, but on the courage he showed as a Nashville heavy hitter who stood up for Bob Dylan way back when Bob was considered a commie jew anti-war hippie by the country music establishment, and for Johnny’s overcoming substance abuse problems to create a whole new oeuvre in his later years, and for his being a man who never tried to shove his Christianity down anyone’s throat, and who, throughout his life, opposed needless war, imperialism, racism and insensitivity to the less fortunate among us.

It was my admiration for him that first led me to the marvelous music and equally fine writings of his multi-talented daughter, Rosanne.

In October, 2008, she wrote a brilliant commentary in The Nation, called “Why I’d Be a Better VP than Sarah Palin.

Contained therein is her straight from the shoulder shot about Sarah being pregnant with Trig in Dallas and taking the wild ride to Wasilla:

Finally, there is one subject in which I find I am even more conservative than the Governor, and that is in the area of neo-natal responsibility. The Governor was eight months pregnant and in Texas to give a speech, when her water broke. She reportedly made her speech and then traveled eleven hours, dripping amniotic fluid, bypassing Seattle and Anchorage (major cities with world-class hospitals) to travel to a small hospital in Wasilla that had no neo-natal intensive care unit, and gave birth there. Call me a wimp, call me insecure, but you had better also call me a maverick, because I would have said “Damn the schedule! Damn the speech and the airline ticket!” If this had been me, as soon as my water broke, I’d be at the closest hospital and that baby would have been born in Texas!

This is from a mother of five whose career has taken her to far more places around the world than Sarah’s has.

It’s a question of priorities.

What matters more:  the life and well-being of your Down Syndrome baby, about to be born prematurely, or your image?

The estimable Ms. Cash makes clear the choice she would have made.

Which is the choice any sane and caring woman in that circumstance would have made.  And the choice her husband–if he were caring–would have insisted on!

This leaves us with only two options:

a) Sarah is/was either not sane, or was so uncaring that she was more concerned about her image than about the life she was carrying inside her.


b) She wasn’t pregnant.

I just don’t see a third alternative.


Coming Soon? Sarah’s first novel?

As Julie Bosman reported in The New York Times last week, it’s not enough for celebrities such as the Kardashian sisters and Snooki and someone named Lauren Conrad–sorry, I’m behind the curve–who is described on Wikipedia as a “celebutante”, to crowd real authors off the nonfiction bestseller list. Now they’re doing it to novelists.

William Morrow, (now a division of Rupert Murdoch’s Harper Collins, aka Sarah’s outfit), the once-respected publisher that will inflict upon us Bristol Palin’s “memoir” this summer, has announced that they’ll soon publish a “novel” by Kourtney, Kim and Khloe Kardashian.

It will follow in the rich literary tradition established by Snooki of Jersey Shore, whose first “novel,” A Shore Thing became a New York Times bestseller, although Snooki confessed to having read only three books in her life, none of them the one she ostensibly authored.

I don’t know Snooki–though I put in some hard time at the Jersey shore in the 1980’s, while researching Blind Faith–but I knew the father of the KKK girls, Bob Kardashian, from my even harder nine months at the OJ Simpson trial in 1995. Bob was one of OJ’s lesser lawyers, also his gofer and his bagman, as in literally carrying OJ’s bags. But he’s a story for another time.

The point here is how can Sarah sit back and let others cash in on an avenue of celebrity she herself hasn’t yet explored?

She can’t.

The obvious solution is for her to “write” a “novel.”

With apologies to Dreiser, Fitzgerald, Hemingway, Jack Kerouac, and the late William Styron and Norman Mailer,  from whose friendship and guidance I benefited greatly, and such friends and acquaintances as Stephen Amidon, Craig Nova, E.L. Doctorow and Jim Shepard, among others–I’d advise Sarah to get off my nonfiction turf (where she’s worn out her welcome, as the failure of her second book showed) and take her fantasies and fabrications where they belong—-to the fiction list.

Her potential range is enormous.

She could “write” a geographically-centered novel such as James Michener’s Alaska:

Or historical fiction such as Paul Revere’s Ride, by David Hackett Fischer, although, like Sarah in Boston last week, he claimed his account was true.  And at least he wrote it himself.

Given her familiarity with both states and her seemingly endless supply of ghostwriters, she could even start a series, like F.D. Caldwell, whose Alaska, Love Found Under the Stars will soon be followed by Arizona, An Adventure of Love.

Aiming higher, Sarah could try to emulate Margaret Truman, only daughter of President Harry Truman, who had authored for herself a series of 24 murder mystery books set in Washington, bearing such titles as Murder in the White House, Murder in the Supreme Court, Murder at the FBI.

Some suggested titles for Sarah’s series:

Murder at WalMart,

Murder at the Wasilla Library,

Murder (of a Neighbor) on Lake Lucille.

But I’m sure you have your own suggestions for subjects and titles for Sarah’s first (admitted) work of fiction.

Please feel free to share.

A suggestion to get you started:

A Tale of Two Babies



Still think she’s not running? Sarah to Sudan in July//UPDATE: Sarah’s 2008 Lie about Sudan








Sarah told the Sunday Times of London, “I am going to Sudan in July and hope to stop in England on the way. I am just hoping Mrs Thatcher is well enough to see me as I so admire her.”

Aides to the ailing Margaret Thatcher won’t let Sarah anywhere near the former British prime minister. That’s no surprise.

But how about the trip to Sudan, where summer temperatures in the capital, Khartoum, average more than 105 degrees? (Maybe the move to Arizona was to acclimatize her.)

On anyone’s list of the most unfortunate countries on earth, Sudan would have to be near the top. Put it this way: Sarah’s not going there for the shopping.

Can anyone see any reason for Sarah to make this trip other than to give herself another “foreign policy” credential for the 2012 campaign?


–Is Franklin Graham paying for it?

–Will Greta Van Susteren tag along?

–Think she’ll bring any of the kids? How about her “good biblical wife” Todd?

–Will Sarah pop over to Kenya to get a refill on her protection from devils from Rev. Thomas Muthee?

–How much of her fortune will she donate to humanitarian aid for the impoverished people of Sudan?

No matter what’s in the (heavily redacted) emails that the state of Alaska will release on Friday, video and photos of Sarah touring refugee camps in Darfur –location of  genocide so appalling that former Secretary of State Colin Powerll called it “the worst humanitarian crisis of the 21st century”–will make it old news by next month.

It’s one thing to hop on the back of a Harley in Washington, and wink and wave.

But for Sarah to inflict herself and her ambitions on the hundreds of thousands of suffering refugees in Darfur would be the most loathsome thing she’s ever done.


During her 2008 vice presidential debate with Joe Biden, Sarah claimed that as Alaska governor she tried to fight atrocities in Sudan by having the state pension divest itself of investments there.  Not so, as ABC News demonstrated.  In fact, Alaska state representative, Les Gara, a co-sponsor of the divestment measure, said that Sarah’s administration “killed our bill.”

Despite Palin’s claim in the debate, her administration’s position on the bill was summarized by her deputy revenue commissioner, Brian Andrews.  At a legislative hearing in February, 2008, he said, “Mixing moral and political agendas at the expense of our citizens’ financial security is not a good combination.”

In other words, forget the atrocities as long as we’re making money.

Nonetheless, in the debate, Palin said, in regard to the genocide in the Darfur section of Sudan:

“What I’ve done in my position to help, as the governor of a state that’s pretty rich in natural resources, we have a $40 billion investment fund, a savings fund called the Alaska Permanent Fund.  When I and others in the legislature found out we had some millions of dollars in Sudan, we called for divestment through legislation of those dollars to make sure we weren’t doing anything that would be seen as condoning the activities there in Darfur.”

Which is exactly what she did not do when it mattered.

As the legislative session was ending, and there was no chance that the bill could even be brought up for vote,  she had another aide say that she’d changed her mind and now supported the it.  However, as the Washington Post reported, that was only after it was clear that time had run out.

In other words, she was against it before she was for it, and paid lip service to it only after she knew it was dead.

Of course, in the same debate, Sarah also said, “We’re building a nearly $40 billion natural gas pipeline.”

How’s that AGIA thing working for ya now, Sarah?

Schaeffer in HuffPo: Todd perfect example of “good biblical wife”









Divorce rumors are swirling again in the supermarket tabloids, but let’s not forget how much Sarah needs the husband she’s turned into an obedient lapdog.

As Frank Schaeffer points out here, Todd has become just another prop–available to build Sarah’s fences, carry her bags (she can’t do it with BlackBerries in both hands) and to turn up for photo ops.

More seriously, Schaeffer reminds us of something I stress in THE ROGUE:  to the evangelical right, Sarah is not merely a politician who espouses their views on social issues, she is “the new Queen Esther,” who will “take back” America.  They remain convinced that “God had chosen her to confound the wise!” as Schaeffer writes.

The extreme Dominionist religious right is the ninety percent of the Palin iceberg we don’t see, as she dazzles secular media in black leather.

Let’s hope our ship of state is not the next Titanic.

Piper back in Wasilla, smiling again, thanks to Britta//UPDATE-CORRECTION




A Wasilla correspondent lets me know that Piper was back home this afternoon, unwinding by enjoying a visit to a local coffee shop/ice cream parlor with Track’s new bride, Britta.

I’m told that Piper was smiling and that Britta and Piper “were just hanging out.”

From all I know of Britta, described to me as “a sweet girl from a solid family,” it would be just like her to take poor, road-weary Piper out for a treat.

Someone who’s known Piper all her life said she came in and “waved a little wave” and, when asked how she was doing, smiled and said, “Okay.”

And now, despite all her mother has done to strip it from her, let’s give Piper her privacy back and hope that the rest of her summer will be better than the start.

And let’s be happy that in the person of Britta Hanson the Palin children finally have a female family member who cares about them.


I’ve heard from so many people–and have now seen video to back it up–that poor Piper, in fact, did not make it back to Wasilla today for a happy, end-of-tour ice cream with Aunt Britta.  I have no doubt that my correspondent’s first-hand report is correct as to what happened, but perhaps I misunderstood when it occurred.

A difference between a blog and a book is that misunderstandings about who, what, when, where and why don’t get published in a book.

Wherever Piper is tonight, let’s hope—for her sake–that we neither see her nor read about her again until she’s at least eighteen years old and able to make choices about privacy for herself.

Let’s also hope that in Arizona somebody will post a sign designed to protect her that’s similar to the one I posted  on my property line last summer after the first time Todd trespassed, which of course is described in THE ROGUE.





Actually, this is getting old fast…//UPDATE: Piper hits the wall, Sarah runs straight through it









I was thinking of writing a piece for The Daily Beast about a Palin appearance in New England this week.

But I’m not going to play hide-and-seek.  So, Sarah, you can relax–at least until Sept. 20 when THE ROGUE will be published.

Seriously, how far does she think this “Close your eyes and count to twenty, then catch-me-if-you-can” approach will take her?

Actually, knowing her, and knowing MSM, I’m sure she thinks–with some justification–that it can take her all the way to the White House.

Even still, I feel sorry for the reporters assigned to the bus tour beat.

And I have an idea for MSM editors: un-assign them.

There’s a lot of talent out there chasing after ephemera.

And, as with the dog chasing the school bus, it’s only worse if you catch it.

Here’s something else, and uglier:  Sarah used Trig as her photo-op prop on her Going Rogue tour in the fall of 2009.

Now, almost two years later, that poor Down Syndrome child is neither so photogenic nor so manageable, so he’s off (or under) the bus.

So it’s Piper who has to fill in.  Do you think that poor girl had a choice?

Last summer, Sarah complained long and loud that I’d moved in next door because I wanted to peer at Piper through her bedroom window.

Her hot-to-trot flunkies like Beck and Van Susteren made that slanderous accusation into a right-wing meme.

But the notion was so silly and sick that I couldn’t even get mad about it.

I do, however, have granddaughters who are just about Piper’s age.

Their mothers and fathers have nurtured them since birth, and continue to do so.  I can’t wait to see them again in July.

But what about poor Piper, reduced to a photo-op, and with no chance to opt off the bus?

The only time I saw Piper—I never laid eyes on her last summer—was at a Sarah book-signing at The Villages, Florida, just before Thanksgiving, 2009, when I reported on the event as part of my research for THE ROGUE.

I was appalled to see the poor girl ushered up to a FOX News platform for makeup before Sarah brought her on camera during an interview with one of the Fox blondes about what a swell Thanksgiving they were all going to have.

Trig, at least, was too young and too Down to know how he was being used.

Piper was being taught to love it.

And it’s only going to get worse.

In the end, there are three things to remember about Sarah:

1)  Everything she says and does is fraudulent.

2)  She cares about no one but herself.

3)  She believes that God has told her that 1) and 2) are okay and that any harm she does to her children is merely collateral damage.



Here’s one of the great things about kids: they can upstage even the Ultimate Upstager.

End of her first day on the bus, and poor little Piper is pissed.  As Michael D. Shear reports for The New York Times:

The youngest Palin daughter looked none to happy to be delayed by the press corps, and repeatedly tugged at her mother’s arm during the questions. At one point, she said, “Mom, let’s go.”

After all this, I wouldn’t be surprised if in ten years Piper Palin joins Al Qaeda.

Honestly now…//UPDATE: New neighbors offer advice via NYTimes

…if you had the choice of spending the summer on an air-conditioned bus (or, more likely, on an air-conditioned private plane that could drop you at a private airfield so you could board the bus minutes before your next destination and pretend to have been on it all along) or here:

where summertime temps reach 120 and where you can’t putter in your “little garden,” or mow the lawn with Trig on your back, and where there’s no “children’s play area” (unless you want to turn them into lizards), and where you yourself would fry in five minutes in your “shorts and tank top,” and where there’s no “family swimming hole,” not to mention no place for Todd to land his float plane…well, which would you choose?

Not to mention that your Political Action Committee can hardly ask people to donate for you to stay home.

Sarah tried that once, charging the state of Alaska per-diem for working out of her house on Lake Lucille, claiming that she was entitled because Wasilla wasn’t her “duty station.”

No wonder that this year she’s opting for the bus.  Take a good look at that house and property (and, yes, that’s the compound she just bought and is moving into, even erecting a new fence around it):  she spends a summer there and by September we’ll be calling her Osarah Bin Laden.

There’ll always be time next year for her new TLC show:  Sarah Palin’s Arizona.


NY Times (and who’s more “lamestream” than them?)  offers Sarah advice from her new Scottsdale neighbors.

The one I feel sorry for is Monica Rahman,

who says that even though “the commotion was scaring her horses,” she’s “excited to have a new neighbor.”

The well-intentioned Ms. Rahman says she “plans to bring cookies to the Palins.”

I hope she’s ready to leave them at the outer gate.  Having been a Palin neighbor, I’m pretty sure she won’t be welcomed with open arms.

Especially not after having spoken to the New York Times.

Good luck, Monica!  Just check in here if you feel you need advice.




Sarah’s Magical Mystery Tour



I wonder if this time she’ll really ride the bus.

Doesn’t look like there’s much space on the side for an ad for THE ROGUE, but I’ll ask Crown to inquire anyway.

At least this will give us all a chance to get out and say hi to Sarah in person–maybe our last chance.

And it will get Chuck and Sally and Piper out of  Alazona for a while, and it also gets Trig out of mothballs.

More seriously, it will be a genuine test of how far Sarah’s star has fallen since the Going Rogue days in the fall of 2009.

And, of course, it may be the quasi-official start of her 2012 presidential campaign.

I’m sure she’s anticipating huge cheering throngs at every stop.  Do you think she’ll get them?

Any thoughts as to which of Sarah’s band of Merry Pranksters will be on board?  Meg Stapleton?  Rebecca Mansour?  Franklin Graham?  Greta Van Susteren?  Mary Glazier?  Andrew Breitbart?  William Kristol?  Shailey Tripp?

Whoever Sarah chooses for the cast, I’m sure they’ll have a rollicking good time on the road.

Although I doubt the new tour will dethrone Ken Kesey and the original Merry Pranksters from number one on the “Best Bus Tours of All Time” list.