Palin Implicated In Ethics Probe

There was speculation that Sarah Palin decided to step down as governor in the hopes of avoiding investigations for ethics violation and possible impeachment. The Associated Press reports that Sarah Palin has now been implicated in yet another ethics probe:

An independent investigator has found evidence that Gov. Sarah Palin may have violated ethics laws by accepting private donations to pay her legal debts.

The report obtained by The Associated Press says Palin is securing unwarranted benefits and receiving improper gifts through the Alaska Fund Trust, set up by supporters.

An investigator for the state Personnel Board says in his July 14 report that there is probable cause to believe Palin used or attempted to use her official position for personal gain because she authorized the creation of the trust as the “official” legal defense fund.

The fund aims to help Palin pay off debts stemming from multiple ethics complaints against her, most of which have been dismissed. Palin says she owes more than $500,000 in legal fees.

A call seeking comment from her lawyer was not immediately returned.

Mudflats comments:

The release of this information raises some interesting questions.  First of all, how did the Associated Press get this information? Normally the findings of an investigation by the Personnel Board would not be available to the public.  Ironically, in 2004 when Palin herself was told that the findings of a complaint that she filed would not be made public, she stated that she wanted to find a “hero” in the legislature who could change that law.

Will the governor have to pay back those who donated to the legal defense fund?  The fund has actively been raising funds for months, and reporting tremendous success in their goal of paying off the governor’s sizable legal debt, which has been reported as high as $600,000.

The report, dated July 14, means that the governor has known about the finding for a full week. Why is the Alaska Fund Trust still continuing to solicit donations?

The  governor delivered a rambling “I’m not a quitter, I’m just leading in another direction” speech on the third of July, leaving the media and Alaskans wondering about the “real” reason she resigned the governorship.  What, if anything did this finding have to do with it?

Suddenly the meme of “frivolous ethics complaints” has lost its sting.

Posted in Sarah Palin, Scandals. Tags: . 2 Comments »

Failure of Individual Insurance Market

The Commonwealth Fund has posted a study showing why the individual insurance market does not provide viable options for most consumers. From the summary:

Between 2001 and 2007, an increasing share of adults with private insurance—whether employer-based coverage or individual market plan—spent a large amount of their income on premiums and out-of-pocket medical costs, were underinsured, and/or avoided needed health care because of costs. Those with coverage obtained in the individual market were the most affected. Over the last three years, nearly three-quarters of people who tried to buy coverage in this market never actually purchased a plan, either because they could not find one that fit their needs or that they could afford, or because they were turned down due to a preexisting condition. Even people enrolled in employer-based plans are spending larger amounts of their income on health care and curtailing their use of needed services to save money. The findings underscore the need for an expansion of affordable health insurance options, particularly during a time of mounting job losses.

Posted in Health Care. Tags: . No Comments »

Housekeeping Note: Problem With Internet Explorer

It appears that an upgrade to WordPress is causing Internet Explorer to show the current theme incorrectly. I will probably have to change themes to continue compatibility with IE but might not have time to do this until tonight or tomorrow.

If you are having difficulty viewing the blog in Internet Explorer you might try out Firefox which can be downloaded for free from here.

Update: I found a theme I had tried in the past which at very quick testing seems to work. I’ll use this temporarily until I see if the usual theme can be fixed or I have time to look at other themes.

Update II: I’ve tried a few more themes. This one looks the most promising so far but I’ll probably still try some more. I will still need to make some adjustments to the sidebars if I keep it.

Update III: The last theme, as well as the others I liked the look of, wound up having some technical problems. I’ve thrown up another one temporarily which at least I haven’t found any serious problems with.

Posted in Blogs & Social Media. Tags: . No Comments »

At the Beach

Vanity Fair Beach

It’s getting rather hot, especially with the air conditioning at my office not working and repairs not expected to be completed until tomorrow. I’ll have to cool off by imagining I’m at the beach. Vanity Fair is helping with a portfolio of famous people photographed at the beach.