WORSE THAN BUSH…. Forget Sarah Palin’s multiple scandals. And put aside her series of demonstrably false claims. And disregard, for a moment, her thin resume, lack of qualifications, and apparent disinterest in current events.
Forget all of that for a moment and just consider how she likes to govern.
[W]hen there was a vacancy at the top of the State Division of Agriculture, she appointed a high school classmate, Franci Havemeister, to the $95,000-a-year directorship. A former real estate agent, Ms. Havemeister cited her childhood love of cows as a qualification for running the roughly $2 million agency.
Ms. Havemeister was one of at least five schoolmates Ms. Palin hired, often at salaries far exceeding their private sector wages.
When Ms. Palin had to cut her first state budget, she avoided the legion of frustrated legislators and mayors. Instead, she huddled with her budget director and her husband, Todd, an oil field worker who is not a state employee, and vetoed millions of dollars of legislative projects.
And four months ago, a Wasilla blogger, Sherry Whitstine, who chronicles the governor’s career with an astringent eye, answered her phone to hear an assistant to the governor on the line, she said.
“You should be ashamed!” Ivy Frye, the assistant, told her. “Stop blogging. Stop blogging right now!”
Palin’s political style is more than a little frightening. She attacks critics, pursues petty vendettas, ignores mayors and state lawmakers, blurs the line between government business and personal grievances, demands strict secrecy in all matters, refuses to engage in policy matters in any real depth, tries to fire state employees who dare to challenge her demands, and insists on surrounding herself with childhood friends and church members, appointing unqualified allies to key government posts. (The Times noted, “The Wasilla High School yearbook archive now doubles as a veritable directory of state government.”)
A conservative radio personality and longtime friend of Palin explained that the governor considers her detractors “bad people who are anti-Alaska.”
Reading the piece, and realizing that Sarah Palin may very well be one heartbeat from the presidency in just three months, is nothing short of chilling. It’s hard not to think Palin would be a poor choice to help lead a convenience store, worse yet the executive branch of the United States government.
That John McCain picked her for the ticket is more than enough to raise questions about whether he has any idea what he’s doing.