Sunday, July 5, 2009


"We took government out of the dairy business and put it back into private-sector hands – where it should be." Sarah Palin, July 3, 2009

For those who have not read about Palin's shenanigans with the Creamery Board, here is Roberto W's synopsis:
Palin fired the whole state Agriculture and Conservation board in July 2007, ostensibly to save a mismanaged state-owned dairy, and replaced it with her usual gang of cronies.

As a result, the dairy lost more money than it had in twenty years.

The dairy, an Alaska icon, closed anyway in two months, taking hundreds of thousands of dollars of additional state money with it.

Millions of dollars in dairy equipment ended up, at a steep discount, in the hands of a local Palin ally, who now runs a remarkably similar operation with the help of a Ted Stevens earmark.

He has a more in depth account that he updated later if you read further in the article.

A salient detail is that the agencies involved recommended closing the state owned dairy, but Palin fired everyone simultaneously on the BAC (the board of Agriculture and Conservation), and appointed a new Creamery board that agreed with Sarah about the need to keep the state run dairy open. Not too surprisingly, the new members seemed to be people related to cow-owning Wassillans. The committee was then spearheaded by childhood friend of Palin's-------who said she liked cows------rather than the a respected PHD in agricultural economics. They voted to extend a $600,000 grant for the struggling dairy.

A few months later, it was necessary to close it after all. In the meanwhile, the dairy had purchased new equipment, and this was sold at steeply discounted prices to well connected local dairy farmers. And a federal earmark to subsidize dairy farmers to pour their too-expensive-to-compete milk on the ground shifted the financial burden from Alaskan tax payers to the rest of the country.

There are so many aspects of this story to get upset about. Policy-driven firings, backroom deals, cronyism, incompetent management, earmarks, and Palin's insistence on not listening to the experts who knew the dairy was doomed. (I could be petty and complain in addition about Palin's poorly worded sentence which suggests that she put the government "back into private-sector hands.")

But the weaseliest aspect of all seems to me to be that although she fought to keep the state run dairy open, and subsidize it with state and federal dollars, she now takes credit for getting the "government out of the dairy business." What gall......such brazenness!

And she figures she can get away with it just like she got away with saying she nixed the bridge to nowhere because she understands that most people are too busy to follow the details of her administration closely.

In her resignation speech she declared herself to be unwilling to "milk it". Does she ever do anything else? Clearly she has found a bigger teat to latch onto, and will continue to do what she does so well......suck!

1 comment:

djinn said...

Looove the pic! And it's never too often to remember, uh, perfidy in high-north places.