Yesterday was a wild one in the sports world, with lots of last-second heroics on the gridiron, and a lopsided loss for the Phillies.
On the political front, the NY Times published a profile of the inspiring individual who is apparently behind many of the spurious rumors that have circulated about Obama on the internet. Andy Martin had been busily working in the shadows ’til Fox “News” recently gave him a big stage in “Hannity’s America” – a place I’m sure I would find most appealing!
The program allowed Mr. Martin to assert falsely and without challenge that Mr. Obama had once trained to overthrow the government.
An examination of legal documents and election filings, along with interviews with his acquaintances, revealed Mr. Martin, 62, to be a man with a history of scintillating if not always factual claims. He has left a trail of animosity – some of it provoked by anti-Jewish comments – among political leaders, lawyers and judges in three states over more than 30 years.
Thanks, Fox – you continue to deliver!
Speaking of delivering – here’s the pdf of the “Troopergate” investigation. Far from sounding partisan, it seems a very thorough and reasoned look at a situation that was, at best, “sketchy. The Conclusion reads, in part:
Governor Sarah Palin
The policy underlying Alaska’s Ethics Act is to discourage executive branch employees from acting upon personal interests in the performance of their public responsibilities and to avoid conflicts of interest in the performance of duty. The Act makes clear that compliance with the code of ethics creates a burden on each executive branch employee that is personal in nature.
Compliance with the code of ethics is not optional. It is an individual responsibility imposed by law, and any effort to benefit a personal interest through official action is a violation of that trust. As explained above, the term “benefit’ is very broadly defined, and includes anything that is to the person’s advantage or personal self-interest. The term “personal interest” as used in the Ethics Act means any interest held by the public officer or the public officer’s immediate family, including a sibling such as Governor Palin’s sister Molly, Molly’s children, her father Mr. Heath or any other family member. AS 39.52.960(11).
As defined in AS 39.52.960(14), the term “official action” means “advice, participation, or assistance, including, for example, a recommendation, decision, approval, disapproval, vote, or other similar action, including inaction, by a public officer.”
The evidence supports the conclusion that Governor Palin, at the least, engaged in “official action” by her inaction if not her active participation or assistance to her husband in attempting to get Trooper Wooten fired [and there is evidence of her active participation]. She knowingly, as that term is defined in the above cited statutes, permitted Todd Palin to use the Governor’s office and the resources of the Governor’s office, including access to state employees, to continue to contact subordinate state employees in an effort to find some way to get Trooper Wooten fired. Her conduct violated AS 39.52.110(a) of the Ethics Act. That statute provides that:
“The legislature reaffirms that each public officer holds office as a public trust, and any effort to benefit a personal or financial interest through official action is a violation of that trust.”
Uh, sorry, Sarah, it does say “personal or financial interest.” (Oh, snap!) Meanwhile, the McCain camp’s response is (predictably) inaccurate and off-the-mark.
And speaking of financial interests – apparently NH’s Senator John Sununu is taking some heat for expenses incurred on a fishing trip to Alaska. He, of course, says everything is copacetic. Given the Republican track record in matters of ethics, we take that with a BIG grain of salt.
Finally, I want to share some info about a great piece of software I am experimenting with. It’s called Omni Page 16 (from Nuance – the makers of Dragon Naturally Speaking). Using OCR technology it converts scanned materials and pdf’s, etc. into editable, formatted text. I used it on the Troopergate report and it worked like a charm – converting it from a pdf to Word while I boiled some water for tea. (Then, while my tea steeped I pulled out a passage in word and posted it here … voila!)