Sunday, October 12, 2008

Palin's Abuse of Official Power and Misguided Patriotism

Late last Friday night came the news out of Alaska that the bi-partisan legislative investigation committee had voted 12-0 to adopt the special investigator's report concluding Sarah Palin abused her official power in firing the head of the state's Department of Public Safety in retaliation for his not firing Palin's former brother-in-law from his job as a state trooper. The official conclusion is re-published below:

To get a pdf download of the full report by Investigator Stephen Branchflower:

Misguided Patriotism

By now most have heard Sarah Palin's misguided criticism of Joe Biden's accurate statement that to pay taxes is to be patriotic. Well, it took a Minnesotan to take Mrs. Palin to task for her idiotic comment and Thomas Friedman did just that in his fine article in the New York Times entitled: "Palin’s Kind of Patriotism".

In the article, Friedman points out that he "... grew up in a very middle-class family in a very middle-class suburb of Minneapolis, and my parents taught me that paying taxes, while certainly no fun, was how we paid for the police and the Army, our public universities and local schools, scientific research and Medicare for the elderly. No one said it better than Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes: “I like paying taxes. With them I buy civilization.”

So the next time you see one of the selfish and short-sited republican political ads bemoaning having to pay taxes, just remember what taxes pay for. To see Tom Friedman's entire op-ed piece, go to

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