Saturday, October 31, 2009

Shadows of a thousand years rise again unseen,Voices whisper in the trees, "Tonight is Halloween!"

What fearful shapes and shadows beset his path, amidst the dim and ghastly glare of a snowy night! With what wistful look did he eye every trembling ray of light streaming across the waste fields from some distant window! How often was he appalled by some shrub covered with snow, which, like a sheeted specter, beset his very path! How often did he shrink with curdling awe at the sound of his own steps on the frosty crust beneath his feet; and dread to look over his shoulder, lest he should behold some uncouth being tramping close behind him! and how often was he thrown into complete dismay by some rushing blast, howling among the trees, in the idea that it was the Galloping Hessian on one of his nightly scouring!

Deep into the darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before. -Edgar Allan Poe, The Raven

Halloween Poem by Cartoon Cottage

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

It is all about the Money ....Honey!

Sarah Palin is proving Levi's words true with every step she takes. He told everyone she was all about the money once she got back from the presidential campaign, and there were doubters, oh there were plenty of people who were claiming he didn't know what he was talking about, that he was just a dirty little liar hell bent on revenge.

Looks like they are going to be eating those words now!

The Iowa Family Policy Center is trying to lure Sarah Palin to town for a speech next month, and they have asked a group of Palin backers to help pay for the appearance. TeamSarah, a political organization that promotes the 2008 vice-presidential candidate, sent a fundraising appeal to supporters Tuesday. They hope to raise $41,000, according to CNN.

Sarah charging Pro Life Group $100,000.00 to speak at event

Looks like Sarah is all about the money these days. We've heard she is charging colleges $75,000.00 to speak (plus 3 first class plane tickets of course), but this "Pro-Life" issue is supposed to be something near and dear to her heart. I guess nowadays, near and dear to her wallet outweighs anything and everything else.

Sarah Palin and her Questionable Financial Disclosure

The Anchorage Daily News has reported that Sarah Palin has turned in her final financial statement for her last 7 months in office.

You can view the disclosure form here .

There are several question that this disclosure has raised.
The most glaring problem is the fact that this form states that Todd Palin only received $3, 252.00 in discounts from Arctic Cat for the last season (2009 Iron Dog Race).

That is unbelievable considering what we have learned about this situation from various sources. In the letter sent to the APOC on August 17th of this year, Sarah Palins' lawyer stated that the contents of the contract between Todd Palin & Arctic Cat were confidential, but did disclose that Todd received a 50% discount on retail, and the company gives "Team Arctic Wear" to the racing Team, as well as paying a sponsorship fee.
You can read it for yourself Here. That seems like much more than $3,252.00 worth of discounts when you consider that Todd gets 2 race machines for himself, one for the race and one practice sled. We know for fact that he got 2 machines, as it was reported, as seen in person by Daniel Duane who did an article for Mens Journal on Todd Palin called Iron Todd Palin in which Mr Duane states:

Davis owns a major construction company with lucrative state contracts, and this
building — a kind of gearhead paradise, Alaska Rich Guy Version — is the reward,
with a 40-foot mobile home parked along one wall, a shiny four-wheel ATV, and
room for Davis’s dozen snowmobiles, or, as the locals call them, “snowmachines.”
Four new ones — identical Arctic Cat F6s — take up the main work area, two for Davis, a seven-time Iron Dog winner himself, and two for Palin. A huge part of the run-up to every year’s Iron Dog is the time these two buddies spend in the surrounding woods, hammering over bumpy terrain and then hanging out in this shop, making tweaks and changing out parts on their F6s.

Then we also have the case made by Sports Illustrated which did a full feature titled The 'First Dude' in his element which gave us a lot of information on the Davis/Palin Team, including but not limited to:

But not all racers are equal.
Some Iron Doggers have spent upwards of $30,000 to finance a once-in-a-lifetime run into the wild heart of Alaska. Tapping their credit cards, they've shelled out $10,000 each for a 2009 snow machine, $10,000 more for an identical training sled, $2,500 for the race entry fee and a few thousand more for trailing airplane support. Palin and Davis, in contrast, have spent almost nothing. They are prodigiously sponsored, with their names monogrammed in script on their matching Arctic Cat jackets. (Palin even has the names of his five kids and his wife, SARAH, THE GOV, appliqu├ęd on his snow machine hood.) They give inspirational speeches at trade shows. They are both adored and reviled. They are the New York Yankees of snow machining.

And are we also to believe that Todd's new found fame being a the husband of the last VP candidate did nothing for Arctic Cat in terms of getting him a better deal this last season than those previously? I would suggest the answer to that is no, we should not believe that, not for a single solitary second, because all you need to do is pay attention and you will see that Todd Palin became a very Hot Topic on the scene, and while those who were familiar with the Iron Dog prior to Sarah Palins' run for the VP spot in the 2008 Presidential campaign might have already known Todd for being a champion, there is not a single doubt that Todd and Sarah both brought a extensive amount of attention to the Iron Dog Race and to Arctic Cat itself simply by virtue of being his sponsor.

If there are any doubts, simply follow any of the following links to see for yourself that the main topic was Todd Palin, and not Scott Davis.

Todd Palin With AmSnow

Todd Palin's Snowmobiling Raises Interest in Sport

Now a Word from Todd’s Sponsor

Todd Palin at Hay Days

Contemporary Arctic Cat F6 600 - The Vehicle that Todd Palin Rides:

Palin’s Bring National Attention to Snowmachine Racing:

And of course there is this report from Politico: Snowmobile maker seizes Palin mania

Arctic Cat, a leading snowmobile maker, blasted out a press release
bragging that Todd Palin
signed autographs at the company’s booth at a snowmobile show in Minnesota
after last week’s GOP
convention.Palin is a four-time winner of the nearly 2,000-mile Tesoro Iron Dog
snowmobile race, and Arctic Cat wanted the world to know he rides its
snowmobiles. But the company also mentioned – in the first sentence of its
release – that his wife, Alaska Gov.
Sarah Palin
, is the GOP’s vice presidential nominee.“He’s a snowmobile
racing champion, and a champion for Arctic Cat,” Christopher Twomey, Arctic
Cat’s chairman and chief executive officer, was quoted in the release.Company
spokeswoman Nancy A. Johnson didn’t immediately know whether Arctic Cat paid
Palin or if the show, Hay Days Grass Drags, drew fans of his wife’s campaign.

And then of course there is this:

Palin and Arctic Cat Share the Passion
Today we received a follow up letter from our friend at Arctic Cat, Kale Wainer, about the recent media attention Arctic Cat has received after vice presidential candidate, Todd Palin, made a special stop in Thief River Falls to visit his friends at Arctic Cat.

Hello Friends of Arctic Cat,What a week for Arctic Cat. In case you missed it, we have had unprecedented opportunities in recent days to Share Our Passion on television and in print, in the news media and in entertainment circles.
It began with Team Arctic racer and husband of vice presidential candidate, Todd Palin, making a special stop in Thief River Falls last Friday, October 17 along with racing partner and seven-time Iron Dog winner, Scott Davis. Sure, it was meant to be a politically-motivated photo op, but Palin spent way more time praising our snowmobile brand than the Republican ticket. We’re proud to have provided the perfect backdrop where Palin could advocate for the outdoors and more importantly, Arctic Cat.
Press coverage from Palin’s visit was seen all over, including a special segment on “Entertainment Tonight” and broadcast coverage in 30 states. Print coverage reached more than 700,000 people with highlights in Thief River Falls Times, Grand Forks Herald, St Paul Pioneer Press, Star Tribune, Bemidji Pioneer, Duluth News Tribune and The Leader-Telegram.
The spotlight on Arctic Cat didn’t end there. During its highest rated episode in 14 years, Saturday Night Live featured Team Arctic Racewear on a widely praised “Weekend Update” segment. If you didn’t get a chance to see SNL, be sure to check out the great National coverage we received You’ll find this clip alone has been seen by more than 2.3 million people! We hope that you share in our excitement over the publicity we’ve received in the last week. We’re proud of our brand and even more proud of you, and your commitment to sharing the Arctic Cat passion.

So I would suggest that even Arctic Cat was admitting that they got incredible coverage of their product simply by virtue of the fact that Todd Palins' wife was running for VP.

Now while we are at it, how about the clothing that Sarah Palin and her daughter Piper were wearing for the race?

Sarah at the Start of the Iron Dog 2009:

And Piper & Sarah at the finish of the Iron Dog 2009:

So Sarah claims she got her jacket from Scott Davis, and that Regina Davis did the embroidered name on it. She (Regina) must be damn good, because those names are done in the exact same thread as the stitching done on the jackets and as someone who has sewn a few times in my life (I've made quilts and such in years gone by) I know how hard it is to match thread, and to match it so perfectly must have been a feat worthy of a professional.

So let's just say I am doubting that claim on the Arctic Cat dollar amount, especially considering that in 2007 on Sarah Palin's financial disclosure they listed the sponsorship value from Arctic CAt as $7,500.00. So what is wrong with this picture? You are not going to get a reasonable person to believe that when Todd Palin was suddenly famous and on the national stage with his wife who was running for the spot of Vice President of the United States, giving all kinds of publicity to Arctic Cat by the simple virtue of who his wife was, and his involvement in the Iron Dog, as well as being sponsored by Arctic Cat that they would lower his sponsorship deal?

Or is it that in 2007 Sarah never bothered to mention his "discounts" on her form and the $7,500.00 was indeed what Arctic Cat paid Todd for his sponsorship deal, or are we to believe that she forgot to include his "sponsorship $$$" in this form and gave a dollar value to the discounts (which we know is not accurate, as there is no way it could be if all the other reports are even remotely close to accurate, and since no one, not Arctic Cat, nor the Palin family has ever once questioned those reports, I am apt to believe that they are accurate, much more so than what Sarah reported on this latest disclosure form).

As stated previously, Palin via her attorney claimed (when they were trying to keep the Arctic Cat information secret) that Todd got a 50% discount as his deal, which if true, and taking into account the sleds cost aprox. $10,000.00 each, that right there would be a $10,000.00 discount (for those of you who don't do math...considering each sled is $10,000.00 x 2 (race sled/practice sled) = $20,000.00 - 50% =$10,000.00) and that of course does not include his clothing, helmet, spare parts, sponsorship payment, clothing for the family (Sarah & Piper), so there is something that just doesn't add up.

So on to other area's of question.

The financial disclosure also states that Sarah recieved as a "gift", tickets for herself, Todd, and Willow to the Yankees game from Rudy Giuliani for a total of $4,250.00. Now that is rather odd, considering that if you divide that total by 3 you come up with a per ticket price of $1416.66, which is not the price of any ticket that I am aware of, especially not ones where the Palins & Giulianis were sitting. In fact, the price of those tickets has been reported by the NY Times.

From the New York Times April 29, 2009:"¶The full-season, front-row $2,500
tickets BEHIND THE DUGOUTS will be reduced to $1,250, and those who have already
purchased such tickets will get a refund or a credit. Still, at $1,250, those
tickets will remain roughly twice as expensive as the highest-priced seat at
Citi Field, the Mets’ new home.¶Tickets along the first- and third-base lines
that cost $1,000 a game will be cut to $650. Refunds and credits will apply as
well.¶Fans who have purchased $2,500 front-row season tickets BEHIND AND TO THE
SIDES OF HOME PLATE will not get a price cut. Instead, THEY WILL RECEIVE AN
EQUAL NUMBER OF FRONT-ROW SEATS, FOR FREE, for the rest of the season, in what
may be an attempt by the Yankees to fill up the empty spaces so visible on

Now if the seats the Palins were in were aprox. $2,500.00 apiece then if the Giuliani's gave the Palins' three tickets, would not that equal $7,500.00??? Or perhaps there were only 2 tickets, one for Todd, and one for Sarah, because Willow was not at the game? That seems like a more reasonable conclusion, and also puts quite a little spin on Palin's feud with David Letterman in which she screeched for all the world to hear that Willow was at the game with her so obviously the that was the girl Dave was referring to in his joke made during his show. There is no way that 3 tickets can add up to the price that Sarah placed on that disclosure based on what the known ticket prices are. Even if you use the discounted price of $1,250.00 per ticket, that still totals only $3,750.00 which leaves a $500.00 difference in the price she claims on the disclosure.

So this doesn't seem to be going well. Now, we also have the Per Diem payments. Sarah claims $6, 370.00 for the last 7 months in office. Hmmmmm.....just under $1,000.00 a month for living in her own home, and traveling, for which she was paid to do by her PAC, and the other venues she was attending. That is a mighty fine set up she has going there, or had going there.

Really? $6,000.00 plus for 7 months? I thought this person was a fiscal conservative? I mean let's be honest here, between her salary($73,000.00) and Todd's salary from BP ($34,086.00) alone, not including his "fishing business" money, nor the money she got from her book, they were making $107,086 for that time frame and still she had to claim that per diem?

There there is the list of checks she received as "gifts" which are dated a year ago. There is a notation beside this list stating that these checks either have been or will be returned. She is supposed to report gifts she receives within 30 days, but we know that doesn't jive with her thinking. She has previously told the APOC that she doesn't consider any gift "received" until she opens it, but admitted that she has boxes and boxes of mail some dating back to 2008 (this was mid June when she shared this information with the APOC). So she must still have gifts she received prior to her quitting her job that she has still not disclosed, and based on what Meg said, she isn't planning on offering any further information. Was this the plan all along? Just report some of the items, pretend it was everything and then wait until she was out of office to do anything more with the rest of the gifts. Has she disclosed all the relevant items, or has she only disclosed a portion of what she has gotten that would normally be required to be disclosed? Curious indeed!
Now no doubt we can get much more deeply involved in all that she claims, and perhaps I will later, but for now, let us just close with the knowledge that something is very wrong with this disclosure filing and I hope that someone besides the bloggers checks it out.