October 11, 2008

The Tasergate Wet Fart

So much grunting, twisting, and screaming, and so little to show for it:

Democratic state senator and staunch Barack Obama supporter Hollis French of Alaska boasted in early September that he would provide an "October Surprise" which would upset the McCain-Palin campaign. Indeed, he originally planned to time it for October 31, four days before the election, for maximum impact, until other legislators forced him to abandon that particular strategy.

Today, however, in an episode of political theater that would make Josef Stalin blush, French gave it his very best shot: The investigator he hired and directed, Steve Branchflower, has labored mightily and given birth to a bloated and redundant 263-page report which boils down, for purposes of the ongoing presidential campaign, to two paragraphs that completely contradict one another. And the one of them that's unfavorable ignores the most important indeed conclusive evidence on point, but goes on to provide Branchflower's guess as to whether Gov. Palin has done anything improper.

Please understand this, if you take nothing else away from reading this post: The Branchflower Report is a series of guess and insupportable conclusions drawn by exactly one guy, and it hasn't been approved or adopted or endorsed by so much as a single sub-committee of the Alaska Legislature, much less any kind of commission, court, jury, or other proper adjudicatory body. It contains no new bombshells in terms of factual revelations. Rather, it's just Steve Branchflower's opinion after being hired and directed by one of Gov. Palin's most vocal opponents and one of Alaska's staunchest Obama supporters that he thinks Gov. Palin had, at worst, mixed motives for an action that even Branchflower admits she unquestionably had both (a) the complete right to perform and (b) other very good reasons to perform.

It's the funniest kangaroo court I've seen in years.

Alaska Democrats hell-bent on lynching Sarah Palin for Dear Leader Obama all but promised a guilty verdict before their investigation into Tasergate began, but the best they could come up with was a unilateral fact-free declaration that amounts to "Sarah Palin abused power because I was hired to find that Sarah Palin abused her power, even though my own report contradicts that. BUGS! BUGS! BUGS!!!"

I'm just trying to figures out who the biggest fools are here:

Hollis French, the Alaska Democrat and Obama supporter that promised an "October Surprise,"only to—surprise!—come up with a self-contradicting report;
  • Steven Branchflower, who wanted to be a good lackey, but still couldn't overcome the facts;
  • The Anchorage Daily News, New York Times, and Associated Press, who apparently think they'll be able to con their readers with headlines contradicted by their stories.
  • And somehow, I have a feeling they'll continue to try to convince us that they represent something approximating truth, which may be the funniest thing of all.

    Posted by Confederate Yankee at October 11, 2008 01:00 AM

    Kangaroo courts would be a feature of an Obama Presidency. Just one of many, many reasons to elect John McCain President.

    Posted by: Phil Byler at October 11, 2008 04:28 AM

    Sadly, I think the ADN, NYT, and AP have correctly judged their readership.

    And the others have correctly decided that these actions are in their own interest. They will be well rewarded down the road.

    Posted by: Clint at October 11, 2008 08:40 AM

    This is so absurd -- a stupid report that essentially reports nothing, all the while Obama's ties to terrorists, criminal slime, and seedy organizations gets a pass...what a world.

    Posted by: Richard Romano at October 11, 2008 09:03 AM

    she abused her power because she legally exercised her power! Don't you get it? she exercised her powers! That is the true crime!

    Posted by: Mikey NTH at October 11, 2008 09:19 AM

    The really good news coming out of this looming recession - or near-depression - is that vast parts of the mainstream media will simply disappear...traditional television news organizations, major newspapers and magazines, both large, small and niche-oriented, will vanish as the advertising dollars are greatly reduced and/or re-directed to other platforms.

    Posted by: Terry at October 11, 2008 10:08 AM

    All the Credentialed Media are going ape about this worthless report, yet, they are all working hard to cover up Obama's links to ACORN, Ayers, Muslim terrorists, etc and so on.

    Posted by: William Teach at October 11, 2008 10:31 AM

    Jonah Goldberg, as usual, has a couple of good questions about this:

    And, those who are seriously upset about how this reflects on Palin, might ponder that this sort of ethical violation doesn't even move the ethics-o-meter needle in Obama's Chicago. And, they might explain to me why Bill and Hillary's firing of the White House travel office orders of magnitude more egregious than what is alleged about Palin was no big deal.


    Double-standard, anyone?

    Posted by: C-C-G at October 11, 2008 10:32 AM

    The problem you have with MSM is not what they publish, the problem is that Americans choose to read it. What you don't like is the choices Americans make in choosing their news sources. What you do not like is that on any given day during prime time news hour only 10% of Americans choose the only right wing news source, Fox News.

    Posted by: John Ryan at October 11, 2008 11:56 AM

    Thanks for that completely irrelevant comment, John Ryan.

    Posted by: William Teach at October 11, 2008 12:00 PM

    Why haven't WE AMERICANS started an impeachment against ALL JUDGES ; SENATORS , etc., in this country who are selling this country down the river. Or, should I say , GIVING this country away to illegal's , who are demanding rights that are bringing in from their turmoiled countries . BULL****. WE are allowing our Gov't to ram it up our *** . WE DESERVE WHAT WE GET

    Posted by: RAYMOND at October 11, 2008 12:52 PM

    On top of that, Obama is a communist.

    Posted by: Joule at October 11, 2008 03:12 PM
    Thanks for that completely irrelevant comment, John Ryan.

    That's our John Ryan... when he's not repeating Obama campaign talking points, he's completely irrelevant. And sometimes he's both at once.

    Posted by: C-C-G at October 11, 2008 06:22 PM

    Well now, let's see if I understand this: Sarah Palin fired Monegan because he refused to fire Trooper Wooten as she demanded, and she did this unlawfully and abused power in so doing. Hmm.

    I've read then entire 260+ page investigative report and have discovered:

    (1) The investigator/prosecutor conducting the inquiry would be fired by any competent law enforcement agency for conducting such an incompetent inquiry.

    (2) There is no evidence that Palin pressured anyone to fire the trooper, quite the opposite, in fact.

    (3) Palin didn't fire Monegan. She offered him another job and he decided to resign rather than accept it. Rather odd behavior for someone punishing Monegan for refusing to do her will, which she didn't do--either thing.

    (4) Palin acted entirely within the law, and rather than abuse power, was remarkably restrained in dealing with a trooper who would have been fired years ago by most American law enforcement agencies for a multitude of crimes that would have put most Americans in jail.

    (5) The investigator/prosecutor's opinion that Palin did anything wrong--even as he acknowledges that she didn't--is a wild supposition unsupported by the facts--such as they are--gathered by the investigator/prosecutor.

    Mostly, in reading the entire document, I found myself repeatedly asking: "What does the testimony of this (any) witness have to do with anything related to this case, and why doesn't this investigator understand that?"

    Posted by: Mike at October 12, 2008 12:36 AM

    please get the article (w/video embedded) to anyone you know undecided and to those Dems you know who have any common sense

    "A lifelong Democrat who has held political office and been a committeeman, Philip Berg, has brought suit over the real questions raised by the absence of a valid Obama birth certificate. His narrative of the various questions Obama has refused to answer is devastating. Graphics and sound are well-deployed to avoid tedium as factual data is conveyed in a way that allows viewers to absorb it. When he contrasts Obama's behavior when challenged (use perfectly valid legal technicalities to delay) with John McCain's full disclosure of all documentary evidence under a similar challenge (remember the flap over his birth in the Panama Canal Zone? -- who raised those questions, anyway?), there is no doubt in a viewer's mind that there is something seriously wrong here.

    We are talking about the Presidency and this guy stonewalls?"

    Posted by: regulus at October 12, 2008 03:28 AM

    Yeah, I hate how those 6 Republicans voted unanimously to find Palin abused executive power. I hate how that shows that this is a Democrat witch-hunt. Shows just how much power the Democrat party will have under Barry O. Because all the Republicans will lose their cojones and submit to the Islamofascist tyranny of the Barry O Ayers Administration. The Barry O Ayers Administration that will ban all gun ownership on Day 1 and send the black helicopters and jack booted thugs out to take away the collection of firearms that God has instructed me to assemble for the coming end-times and force me to convert to Muslam and renounce my dear lord and savior. How come more people dont get this it is the most important thing ever to happen to america remember that osama said he would have covert operatives in america to steal our elections and we all thought he meant 2004 but now we remember that alkaeda thinks about things a long time and now it is barack hussein osama who is the fifth columnist kaeda agent and obsama wins and we lose goodbye american freedoms.

    Posted by: Hemlock for Gadflies at October 12, 2008 11:33 AM
    Yeah, I hate how those 6 Republicans voted unanimously to find Palin abused executive power.

    I gave up reading your comment after that opening line, as it shows you obviously aren't paying attention, and therefore aren't relevant.

    Nobody--not six Republicans, nor any Democrats--responded to any findngs. I quoted the section and even had it bolded, but apparently it still wasn't obvious enough for you to get this:

    The Branchflower Report is a series of guess and insupportable conclusions drawn by exactly one guy, and it hasn't been approved or adopted or endorsed by so much as a single sub-committee of the Alaska Legislature, much less any kind of commission, court, jury, or other proper adjudicatory body.

    Words mean things. Perhaps you should read them.

    Posted by: Confederate Yankee at October 12, 2008 11:41 AM

    Hemlock forgot to mention SOROS who is often blamed for being the behind the scenes nemesis of all things Republican.

    Posted by: John Ryan at October 12, 2008 11:59 AM
    Yeah, I hate how those 6 Republicans voted unanimously to find Palin abused executive power.

    Welcome back, Nunaim. Figured out the size of that garage door yet?

    Posted by: C-C-G at October 12, 2008 01:05 PM

    I have some questions:

    How is S. Palin responsible for Todd's behavior?

    How was S. Palin supposed to compel a change of his behavior?

    Posted by: mockmook at October 12, 2008 03:59 PM

    The ultimate problem with the integrity (actually, the lack thereof) of this report is that there is no underlying crime or wrongdoing and never was, therefore, the investigator who produced the report spends hundreds and hundreds of pages of testimony chasing his tail. Normally, one investigates to discover if a crime has been committed, and/or to what degree a given person was involved. When one discovers that no crime has been committed, the investigation ends. This one did not. When one discovers that the target of the investigation was not involved (in a crime that never occurred!) the investigation ends. This one did not.

    Under these circumstances, any conclusion is, to put it mildly, the sound of one hand clapping, or to paraphrase Shakespeare, sound and fury, signifying nothing. When the investigator actually admits just that in his findings, to what other conclusion can honest, reasonable people come?

    Posted by: Mike at October 12, 2008 05:52 PM

    "When the investigator actually admits just that in his findings, to what other conclusion can honest, reasonable people come?"

    Since when are liberals reasonable?

    Posted by: Conservative CBU at October 12, 2008 07:12 PM

    Weird that it was a bipartisan report.

    Posted by: ReganCon at October 13, 2008 03:22 AM