Soob

Politics, Foreign Policy, Current Events and Occasional Outbursts Lacking Couth

Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Palin Pregnancy Conspiracy

I don't generally put much stock into hard line partisan mud slingers. But this Kos report (nod to Half Sigma) is, shall we say, rather convincing.
A snippet:

Sarah Palin was not pregnant with child.

Her sixteen year-old daughter was.

Checking with the Anchorage High School that Bristol Palin attended, reporters were given word that her family had taken Bristol out of school due to contracting infectious mononucleosis. The amount of time Bristol was absent shifts from five to eight months.

Mono can last anywhere from two weeks to three months, but an eight month infection is a freak oddity. Yet it remains a common excuse given by girls in private & Catholic schools around the nation when pregnancy comes into play. Not the first time, not the last time.

Give it a read and lemme know what you think. I'm not wholly convinced and have yet to read up on the other side of the coin, but so far it's pretty damning. I'll spend part of this afternoon looking for a counter argument worth mention.

In the meantime, should the Palin conspiracy turn out to be true, I'd say McCain's campaign will likely not recover.

27 comments:

Mike said...

I'm calling bullshit. It's (at first glance) good bullshit, but a couple things come into play, most of which have been stated by the commenters over at half sigma. First (and foremost), no one has substantiated how long her daughter was out of school, or if she was even ever taken out of school. Until that's done, this is just a rumor. Furthermore, if this is indeed the case, why would she accept the nomination? I think it should be fairly obvious that Palin isn't your typical power hungry backstabbing politician and actually cares for her family. Assuming that's the case, why would you accept the nomination knowing there was such a large devastating skeleton in your (and your daughter's) closet?

There's quite a few more data points in favor of this not being true by the commenters over there. I won't rehash all of them, but they've pretty much managed to convince me that this story doesn't have much in the legs department.

Ultimately though, this needs to be put into context...the Kos diarist is going after her SIXTEEN YEAR OLD daughter. I'm not saying she shouldn't be fair game, but you'd better be damn sure of your case before you go after her. The fact that there are several holes in his narrative indicate to me that he really wasn't sure, and that he's just a partisan dick.

Mike said...

I do have to say though, that I'm incredibly amused by some of the commenters over at DKos who are calling bullshit and saying (wait for it) that it's all a Rethuglican plant in order to justify calls to leave Gov. Palin alone.

How people like that manage to live in such a constant state of paranoia is beyond me.

Adrian said...

Might be bullshit, might not - the pictures seem fairly convincing although who knows if the dates are accurate. But what is the political payoff if this is true? Right now evangelicals seem to be the only people who support Palin, and I can't see them withdrawing their support and essentially ensuring their own political irrelevancy.

McCain: "OK crazies, you win, I will pick Palin."
Crazies: "Hooray!"
[break]
Crazies: "wait a second, we don't like Palin anymore, pick someone else"
McCain: "too bad, you blew your shot, I'm picking Lieberman"

Jay@Soob said...

Gents,

I'm thinking about nixing this post. Got to thinking about how, if all this is bullshit (or even if it isn't,)how that kid will feel. The message, from her perspective being the entire country can't figure out if I was pregnant or fat. That can't be good for a girls self esteem and while it's going to continue to happen I'm not sure any analysis here on my part is worth being part of it.

I'm still up in the air about it's legitimacy but haven't found anything solid in terms of a concerted effort to debunk the conspiracy.

Mike, yeah the commentary at HS is intriguing but not quite enough for me to decide one way or another.

Adrian, I'm not so sure Palin's support is purely evangelical. Also, bear in mind whatever the headline's hack, Palin supports both "theories" in school. A headline reading "Palin supports Creationist theory in school" is only half the story.

Adrian said...

I was referring more to the stories about how McCain was talked out of naming Lieberman as his VP because the evangelicals would revolt, and also how David Frum and similar types are panning the pick.

I'd keep the post up - if we only talked about things that made people feel good about themselves, political discussion would be dead...

Mike said...

Don't take the post down, if nothing else than principle. I've never taken anything down and I don't plan on it. Clarify, explain, even refute your previous positions, but don't memory hole anything. The internet never forgets, and I consider it poor form.

I agree in theory to what you are saying, Adrian, but again, this is a teenager we're talking about. If you want to criticize Palin for taking risks with her baby, that should be fair game. Not necessarily the classiest move, but fair game for a political figure. Spouses should also be considered fair game, to a lesser extent. But you really need to be careful when going after the children of political figures. Not only does it have the potential to blow up in your face, it's just generally a dick move.

I'm not saying that kids should be completely off limits, but as I said earlier if you're going to go after them it needs to be a) relevant to the politician in question (I would say that it is in this case) and b) ironclad (which in this case it is definitely not.)

Half Sigma said...

"why would you accept the nomination knowing there was such a large devastating skeleton in your (and your daughter's) closet?"

Because she's stupid?

"the Kos diarist is going after her SIXTEEN YEAR OLD daughter"

If she really got pregnant, then I don't see a problem with it. After all, 16-year-old girls having babies is the inevitable result of Palin's anti-abortion platform. If the story is true, this means that abstinence education didn't work very well in the Palin household.

Jay@Soob said...

Stupid? No, that dog, she just don't hunt. The woman has gone from beauty queen to executive power in a whirlwind fashion. Genius is no requirement for political growth but an abject imbecile would have trouble putting his own shoes much less convincing an entire state that they would benefit through his (or her as the case is) executive rule. Too simplistic and I just don't buy it.

"After all, 16-year-old girls having babies is the inevitable result of Palin's anti-abortion platform."

Heh. Sorry, I disagree. Pregnant 16 year olds are much more the result of the societal and cultural norm that defies biology and confers an "acceptable" age for sexual intercourse and child bearing.

Societally speaking these restrictions make sense as most American 16 year old girls are not even slightly equipped to carry on a cohesive conversation much less raise children.

Jay@Soob said...

But, never the less, the biological want often out weighs the societal acceptance and we have pregnant teenagers.

Mike said...

HS,

Read the last paragraph of my previous comment. I agree that this story would be relevant to Palin's nomination and politics, so it shouldn't be rejected out of hand, but that when you go after a teenage kid, you need to have iron clad proof. Throwing mud and hoping something sticks is one thing when you're doing it to a politician, it's quite another when you're doing it to the politician's teenage daughter.

Eddie said...

Thoughts...

-16 year olds are not children. 16 year olds can be and are charged and sentenced as adults with any number of crimes. We as a society have allowed this, which leads me to question a number of things (like consent, drug and financial laws) that don't compute with this. We have blurred the lines so substantially between young adulthood and adulthood that it is impossible to tell anymore.

- These rumors have apparently been floating around Alaska @ a substantial level of noise since Palin was pregnant.

- The McCain campaign is lying its @@@ off that it vetted her politically. As Marc Ambinder points out, a legal vet is fairly easy, but a political vet goes much longer and more in-depth. The ongoing ethics investigation (which at the least paints Palin as a liar and an abuser of her executive power in a backwoods state) has been joined by other highly questionable firings from her time as governor and as a mayor of a small town (which she apparently left in some serious degree of debt after her term was over).
She supported Pat Buchannan, a known Jew-baiter and man of questionable judgment (far worse than a Rev. Wright or Jerry Falwell to me) and is now running scared from his memory of her support on numerous occasions in the late 90's.

There is simply no way in hell McCain & co vetted her responsibly. As a Republican who is not voting for McCain but is doing extensive election volunteer work (phone banks and voter canvassing) for our GOP governor in NC, Senator Dole (no prize piece but better than the very liberal and corrupt alternative) and Reps. Howard Coble & Walter Jones, this deeply concerns me.

Her utter lack of interest or insight in foreign policy and most aspects of domestic policy only worries and angers me further.

Jay & the rest of the other commenters here are probably as viable VP picks as Palin is when it comes to being ready for the job.

In the end, Soob's post about the pregnancy conspiracy (which I do not believe to be true but the condemnation of doctors, nurses & pregnancy experts for her actions while near or actually "in labor" raises important questions about her judgment) is important because it asks the larger question: What do we really know about this woman? What else is in her past? What in her past is truth and myth?

For example, we have damning proof she was originally for the bridge to nowhere, touting her support as part of her election effort. McCain now uses this myth in his stump speech as one of his key rationale for picking her and admiring her. Palin also is lying on a regular basis about her role and opinion of the Bridge To Nowhere. Or wait a minute, was she for it before she was against it?(1)
And she kept the money!

(1) http://www.adn.com/sarahpalin/story/511471.html

Eddie said...

BTW, the McCain camp (and even I in my original blog post about her) touted her choice to not have the abortion as a matter of her pro-life cred and her courage.

They opened the door to this is it is at all true.

In addition, then I found out she's one of the nutjobs who think abortion should not be an option for a woman who was raped or the victim of incest. I suggest she and the rest of them visit a camp filled with victims of rape in a conflict zone like DarFur or the Congo before making such asinine and heartless judgments and trying to legislate them on people. Or hell, visit one of the counseling sessions in any city or state for mothers of babies born of rape. They tend to last for years and cost the taxpayer and the woman in question tens of thousands of dollars over time. Not to mention the kind of relationship the child and the mother have.

Eddie said...

Oh how wonderful.

The McCain camp just this weekend sends vetters to AK...

http://www.andrewhalcro.com/vetting_the_veep_post_announcement

Adrian said...

Tomorrow, McCain will be giving a speech, and Ashton Kutcher will jump out from the podium and yelled "PUNKED" and then they will unveil Joe Lieberman as the actual VP pick.

Eddie said...

Given the stakes here, I have no doubt the Dems will let the bloggers and media types hound her all week, let her formally join the ticket and then drop one or two of the juiciest bits about her to the press on Friday to help take the bump off McCain's speech.

I am reminded of how shaky Bush was to many people without any minor or major scandal on his watch in Texas. She already has multiple seriously questionable errors of judgment and a brewing scandal investigation approved by members of both parties in her legislature. She made many enemies among Republicans there who may now see this as the best opportunity to destroy her political career for good.

This is going to be a fiasco but the pregnancy conspiracy is just white noise....

Anonymous said...

"Stupid? No, that dog, she just don't hunt. The woman has gone from beauty queen to executive power in a whirlwind fashion. Genius is no requirement for political growth but an abject imbecile would have trouble putting his own shoes much less convincing an entire state that they would benefit through his (or her as the case is) executive rule. Too simplistic and I just don't buy it."

"Sarah Palin: What exactly does the VP do all day?"

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/08/29/sarah-palin-what-exactly_n_122514.html

That's pretty stupid to me.

Adrian said...

One of the big parts of VP is flying around the world doing the diplomacy that the president and secstate don't have time to do, and being a public face of the US. Given Palin's complete lack of foreign affairs experience it'd be hard to see her doing that.

Eddie said...

IT is not true

http://www.flickr.com/photos/30076181@N02/

Sahm629 said...

Hi - Actually the baby bump photo is from 2006 - read this article and on page 2, you will see a link to the Anchorage Daily News, which states the photo is from 2006.
http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/998402/vp_candidate_sarah_palin_pregnancy.html?cat=75

Also if you go to msg boards you will hear Alaska residents saying they know its not true b/c Bristol doesn't go to school in Anchorage, the photo is old, etc. etc.

The Historian said...

A thought: posting this is a matter of record. Over the long term do you wish to be judged by a claim like this one?

If so, leave it. If not, delete it.

Ortho said...

Did you hear the good news? Bristol is pregnant! (http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jIMJWupyWNmvU3UX2aGhICmZrQ_wD92U2M680)

The Historian, I don't understand why a person would "judge" Jay@Soob for posting this post. When I initially read the post, I thought it was an ingenious way to track and analyze a possible tactic of 5GW -- the virus-like spread of a specious rumor, an attempt, if you like, at virtual character assassination. Jay@Soob did not believe the rumor, nor did he attempt to pass it off as credible. Instead, he virtuously attempted to start a discussion we could all learn from.

I, for one, thank Jay@Soob for his hard work that jump-started an important discussion.

Jay@Soob said...

Ortho, in an earlier comment I'd considered nixing the post in consideration of the now infamously pregnant girl. As you see I let it stay, as you say the conversation it generated was too interesting to lose. That's where TH's comment stems from, I'm certain. Thanks much for the kind words and even more for suggesting the connection to 5GW. I think there's something there worth looking further into.

Jay@Soob said...

adrian,

"Tomorrow, McCain will be giving a speech, and Ashton Kutcher will jump out from the podium and yelled "PUNKED" and then they will unveil Joe Lieberman as the actual VP pick."

I laughed out loud reading that. I'd suggested Lieberman as a possible candidate in a previous post.

Jay@Soob said...

Historian,

Thanks for the advice. In reflection, I believe that if I'm to be judged in any great measure by this single post then I have done a poor job in every other post! I'm a bit biased here, but I don't think that to be the case and so I'm not particularly worried about it.

The Historian said...

I understand your point and I agree with your comment about generating a lot of commentary. Most certainly the original Kos post caused a lot of heat. It may have cost them some as well.

Keep up the interesting work. Soob is a great read.

Ymarsakar said...

Give it a read and lemme know what you think. I'm not wholly convinced and have yet to read up on the other side of the coin, but so far it's pretty damning.

It's only damning because you forgot your information warfare filters, which you use in 5th generation warfare issues, but not here.

Jay@Soob said...

Byah, nonsense. The sources for such were limited and I have no direct course to the Palin campaign. The entire conspiracy lacked contrary information when I posted it.