Nothing I have ever written has prompted as nasty a response as my blog posts questioning whether Sarah Palin actually gave birth to her youngest child, Trig. The local tighty righties here in the Portland area go completely bonkers when I question Palin's ability to tell the truth about this. They never address the substantive questions, but instead go right at the throat of the messenger. I've been called all sorts of names by people like Robert Canfield, Rob Kremer, Ted Piccolo, and some obscure guy out on the west side who used to work at the zoo. (I looked up his name once, but I forgot it, and it's not worth looking up again.)
Last week, the locals were joined by Queen Sarah herself -- attacking the media for paying attention to the "bored, anonymous, pathetic bloggers" who would dare question the veracity of her wacky tale of her supposed delivery of the child last April.
Like just about everything that emanates from the mouth of Governor Palin, these adjectives were not quite accurate. Not everyone who has questioned the infamous Trig story has done so anonymously. Certainly I haven't. Neither has Andrew Sullivan of The Atlantic, who has raised the same questions that I have. And although this fellow signs only his first name, it's not too hard to figure out who he is from his online bio.
Palin's problem, of course, is that the paltry evidence she's produced to suggest that she didn't fake the whole pregnancy with this Down's-syndrome infant doesn't amount to a hill of beans. A couple of photos of her parading around with something under her shirt; a highly unusual letter, purportedly written by her doctor but never confirmed by that doctor as authentic, and released literally on the eve of the Presidential election; a few testimonials from some Anchorage TV news people that she owns -- that's pretty much all we have from Palin. No birth certificate, no actual medical records -- just Sarah and her friends' word, which no doubt the Lord would want us to accept at face value.
On the other side of the ledger there are (a) the sheer implausibility of the details she has offered of the birth, (b) several photos in which it appears that she was not pregnant, including this shocker taken 23 days before Trig was born, and (c) the mysterious absence of any of the trappings of a normal 21st Century birth, such as birthing room photos, hospital photos of the newborn with his siblings, a copy of the official government record of live birth, or even a birth certificate, which in Alaska is a different document.
Perhaps the best response to Palin's attack on the bloggers -- and the media who would dare write about them -- was published last week by Pat Dougherty, the editor of Palin's home newspaper, the Anchorage Daily News. Although purporting to agree that there's no reason to question the official story of the Trig birth, he basically told her off, as follows:
I want to be very clear on this: I have from the beginning and do now consider the conspiracy theories about Trig's birth to be nutty nonsense.
If that's true, then why has Lisa Demer [a Daily News reporter] been asking questions about Trig's birth?
Because we have been amazed by the widespread and enduring quality of these rumors. I finally decided, after watching this go on unabated for months, to let a reporter try to do a story about the "conspiracy theory that would not die" and, possibly, report the facts of Trig's birth thoroughly enough to kill the nonsense once and for all.
Lisa Demer started reporting. I don't believe she received any cooperation in her efforts from the parties who, in my judgment, stood to benefit most from the story, namely you and your family. Even so, we reported the matter as thoroughly as we could. Several weeks ago, when we considered the information Lisa had gathered, we decided we didn't have enough of a story to accomplish what we had hoped. Lisa moved on to other topics and we haven't decided whether the idea is worth any further effort.
Even the birth of your grandson may not dissuade the Trig conspiracy theorists from their beliefs. It strikes me that if there is never a clear, contemporaneous public record of what transpired with Trig's birth that may actually ensure that the conspiracy theory never dies. Time will tell.
Which brings us to the latest Palin baby story that isn't quite holding water. Supposedly her daughter, Bristol, gave birth to a baby boy on Dec. 27, which is supposed to prove somehow that Sarah is the biological mother of Trig. That was more than three weeks ago. In those three weeks, no one in the media or on the internet has reported seeing hide nor hair of the alleged new baby, of Bristol, or of her alleged boyfriend and the alleged father of said child. There has not been seen even a single blurry cell phone picture of the child. The news was announced by a shirt-tail relative in Kennewick, Washington, and no one has ever been told precisely where the baby was born, or under what circumstances, or where he has been kept all this time.
Given that Bristol's pregnancy is a key feature to the official Trig story, do you think it odd that Palin has not offered a shred of evidence to support the birth of her supposed grandson other than her own word and blustery insults to those who would dare ask questions about the matter?
Either Sarah Palin is continuing to lie through her teeth, or else she is flipping the bird, big time, to the media and the public. Is that the kind of person who should hold any kind of national office? Keep her behavior on this issue in mind when the evangelical extremists wheel her out, time after time, in the years ahead, for your approval. She's exhibiting some personal attributes here that make her supremely unfit for a leadership position.
UPDATE, 1/20, 1:09 a.m.: In my list of name-callers, I neglected to mention the dude who publishes Orbusmax, the Seattle Drudge-wannabe site. He used to like me, but that was before Sarah Palin.