NINETY-NINE

Palin on the AOGCC

On p. 99 of GR, Sarah continues her discussion of her resignation as chairman of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission. She writes:

"I prayed long and hard. I loved the job. And I had to consider that by making any drastic moves I would be crossing swords with the most powerful men in my own party. My political career would be over. My whole future was before me. But I also knew I couldn't sit there and be a party to all of this.

"I knew what I had to do, so I resigned--stepping away from the ethical lapses and hierarchical blinders to effect change where I could--on the outside.

"After I left, a state assistant AG issued a sixteen-page ethics complaint against Randy [Ruedrich], who eventually agreed to pay the highest civil fine in Alaska history. He retained his GOP chairmanship.

"Out of a job but sleeping well again, I knew that any shot I might have had to become a GOP insider was gone, which was fine, but I wanted Alaskans to be able to believe in the party ideals again. I knew the GOP planks made the strongest foundation upon which to build a strong state and country."

What a marvelous testimony of a great-hearted patriot!! There are not many people in our contemporary society who would be willing to sacrifice the six-figure salary of the AOGCC chairman on the altar of principle!!

I would like to focus my thoughts this morning on a few words from the above citation.

The Governor speaks about being "on the outside." She says that she had lost any chance to be a "GOP insider." And she talks about the "planks" of the Republican Party.

I would like to suggest that there is a universe of difference between being a "GOP insider" and being inside the best of the GOP, as constituted by its loftiest and highest ideals.

There are TWO REPUBLICAN STRUCTURES.

One is constructed on the "planks" and walls of cronyism, of greed, of corruption, of power-mongering.

The other is built out of the idealistic, pro-American planks that drew Sarah into the GOP in the first place when it came time for her to register to vote.

It was these ideals, the planks of the GOP platform, along with the living example of President Ronald Reagan, who personified, who incarnated, who breathed life and form and stature into those planks, that moved the young Sarah Heath to sign up with the Grand Old Party.

Now, these two parallel GOP structures sit there. They occupy what we may term the same "denominational space." What I mean is that we employ the same term "Republican Party" to designate both of them. And yet, when we advance in thought and in perception to the level of REALITY, two entirely different entities occupy that "denominational space."

Each one bears and carries the name "Republican Party"; however, under the mask and mantle of the one and single designation reside two diametrically opposed notional and political and spiritual worlds!! These two worlds are galaxies apart.

Therefore, it is facile and easy to perceive that to be INSIDE one of these structures is to be utterly OUTSIDE the other, and vice-versa.

So our Sarah, at the very moment that she forfeited any chance of being a GOP "insider," in that very instant, with her heroic AOGCC resignation, entered deep into the inner sanctum of the Republican Party in its finest and best form.

Conversely, had she compromised and given in to the corruption in her Party, while she might have been given a place at the table of the "good ole boys," she would have excluded herself forever from that MANSION OF THE MIND AND SPIRIT that is formed and made, not of bricks and wood and nails and mortar, but of the highest and loftiest ideals of America.

So, if Mitt Romney and his people attempt to bar her from the GOP convention in Tampa next month, if they do not give her a prominent speaking slot, if they dare to exclude the Party's most recent vice-presidential nominee and its most powerful speaker and advocate, she will be indeed "OUTSIDE" the physical confines of the convention hall.

However …

She will be INSIDE so much more!!

She will be INSIDE the minds, INSIDE the hearts, INSIDE the imagination of so many millions of American patriots: Republicans, Democrats, Independents.

The very attempt to silence her, her very absence from the convention, would speak even more powerfully than the Governor could from the speakers' podium.

Sometimes OUTSIDE is INSIDE and INSIDE is OUTSIDE!!!

God bless the Governor for the principled and heroic choices she has made and continues to make that the country she loves may live and survive and flourish!!!

Whatever else happens, Sarah Palin of Alaska, our Lady Warrior, will always be an INSIDER for us, will always be inside our grateful hearts and minds and memories!!!

Read It For Yourself:

Other Great Sarah Books:

Palin Essentials:

Credits:

All sidebar photos are from Wikimedia. I have tried to post all royalty-free images or to get permission, but in a few cases I could not locate the original source of a photograph or find a way to ask permission.


Contact info: bbrianus@gmail.com.

Other Great Going Rogue Reviews:

Jedediah Bila:

"Palin’s inviting first-person narration that is sometimes whimsical, often confident, and always patriotic...Going Rogue is truly one of those reads in which you put the book down after your eyes graze the final lines and you somehow feel like the writer is someone you’ve known all your life."
John Ziegler:

"I was simply blown away by Going Rogue on almost every level. For many reasons, this is by far the best book and greatest literary achievement by a political figure in my lifetime..."
Brigadier General Anthony J. Tata:
"Her book washes away all doubts that any reader might have had about her readiness to be president. She comes across as exceptionally bright, dedicated, and passionate about public service. Her moral compass is strong, pointing true North in this case. And she has a wicked sense of humor."
Don Surber:
"Conservatives know why Palin is still standing — and standing taller today than those who tried to bring her down. What does not kill you makes you stronger. Thank you, Tina Fey."

Sarah Palin is Coming to Town

Review by Stanley Fish:

When I walked into the Strand Bookstore in Manhattan last week, I headed straight for the bright young thing who wore an “Ask Me” button, and asked her to point me to the section of the store where I might find Sarah Palin’s memoir, “Going Rogue: An American Life.” She looked at me as if I had requested a copy of “Mein Kampf” signed in blood by the author....


A few days later...I had begun reading Palin’s book, and while I wouldn’t count myself a fan in the sense of being a supporter, I found it compelling and very well done....

First, the art. The book has an architectonic structure that is built around a single moment, the moment when Palin receives a call from John McCain inviting her to be the vice-presidential candidate of the Republican party. When we first hear about the call it is as much a surprise to us as it was (at least as reported) to her, because for six pages she has been recounting a wonderful family outing at the Alaska State Fair. When her phone rings, she hopes it might be a call from her son Track, a soldier soon to deploy to Iraq, but “it was Senator John McCain asking if I wanted to help him change history.”

And that’s the last we hear of it for 200 pages. In between we hear a lot about Wasilla, high school, basketball, college, marriage, children, Down syndrome, Alaska politics, the environment, a daughter’s pregnancy. The re-entry of John McCain into the narrative on page 208 introduces Palin’s account of the presidential campaign and its aftermath, especially her decision to resign the governorship before the end of her term....


Paradoxically, the effect of the neatly spaced references to the call is to de-emphasize it as a dramatic moment. It is presented not as a climax, but as an interruption of matters more central to Palin’s abiding concerns — her family, Alaska’s prosperity, energy policy. (She loves to rehearse the kind of wonkish details we associate with Hillary Clinton, whom she admires.)

Indeed, it is a feature of this narrative that events we might have expected to be foregrounded are elided or passed over. Palin introduced herself to the nation with a powerful, electrifying speech accepting McCain’s invitation to join the ticket. It gets half a sentence (“I gave my speech”)....


The only event that receives an extended discussion is her resignation. It is important to her because as an act it reflects on her integrity, and she has to be sure (as she eventually was) that she was doing it for the right reasons.

Resigning was a moral act for which she was responsible. The vice-presidential candidacy just happened to her; her account of it reads like an extended “what-I-did-on-my summer-and fall-vacation” essay.


For many politicians, family life is sandwiched in between long hours in public service. Palin wants us to know that for her it is the reverse. Political success is an accident that says nothing about you. Success as a wife, mother and citizen says everything...

I find the voice undeniably authentic...It is the voice of small-town America, with its folk wisdom, regional pride, common sense, distrust of rhetoric (itself a rhetorical trope), love of country and instinctive (not doctrinal) piety.

It says, here are some of the great things that have happened to me, but they are not what makes my life great and American. (“An American life is an extraordinary life.”) It says, don’t you agree with me that family, freedom and the beauties of nature are what sustain us?


And it also says, vote for me next time. For it is the voice of a politician, of the little girl who thought she could fly, tried it, scraped her knees, dusted herself off and “kept walking.”

In the end, perseverance, the ability to absorb defeat without falling into defeatism, is the key to Palin’s character. It’s what makes her run in both senses of the word and it is no accident that the physical act of running is throughout the book the metaphor for joy and real life. Her handlers in the McCain campaign wouldn’t let her run (a mistake, I think, even at the level of photo-op), no doubt because they feared another opportunity to go “off script,” to “go rogue.”

But run she does (and falls, but so what?), and when it is all over and she has lost the vice presidency and resigned the governorship, she goes on a long run and rehearses in her mind the eventful year she has chronicled. And as she runs, she achieves equilibrium and hope: “We’ve been through amazing days, and really, there wasn’t one thing to complain about. I feel such freedom, such hope, such thankfulness for our country, a place where nothing is hopeless.”

The message is clear. America can’t be stopped. I can’t be stopped. I’ve stumbled and fallen, but I always get up and run again. Her political opponents, especially those who dismissed Ronald Reagan before he was elected, should take note. Wherever you are, you better watch out. Sarah Palin is coming to town.

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