Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Courage of Shannyn Moore - Part Six - The Wild Ride Begins Again

I. For some reason, Andrew Sullivan chose Monday to reiterate his concern that Sarah Palin continues to benefit politically and financially from a story that never made sense.

The first person to point out in the media that Palin's - and her family's - narrative was worthy of further scrutiny was Alaska commentator Shannyn Moore. Shannyn made her initial observations on this within days of the announced birth of what most consider to be Palin's youngest child, Trig Palin, in early 2008.

Sullivan, in the Monday post called Why Does Trig Matter, and in a series of updates Tuesday at his blog at The Atlantic, The Daily Dish, responds to a question from a reader, Jonathan Bernstein. In the updates to further questions, Sullivan is more transparent than almost any other nationally prominent blogger who claims to be a conservative.

Bernstein states:

I've seen three possible explanations. The first is the wild one, that the baby isn't really hers; she's covering for someone else's inconvenient pregnancy and has adopted that child. The second is that she was an irresponsible mother, and took terrible risks given the dangerous nature of the pregnancy. The third is that she made the whole thing up, or most of it: she invented a heroic birth story, and then wound up being stuck with it when she suddenly had a massively larger audience.

So. Let's say one of these is true. Why should I care?

Sullivan's response is worth reading in its entirety, but the gist is here:

If any of the three scenarios Jonathan has pointed out is true, then Sarah Palin has no business running for president and should never have been picked for vice-president. Why? Because if her giving birth to a Down Syndrome child is a complete hoax, then she's simply psychotic to double down on such a crazy invention, and we should try and avoid psychotics as political leaders (yes, it's hard given the normal inclinations of a political class, but we can try, no?). If the scenario is merely a function of deep irresponsibility, an unconscious desire to miscarry her child by extreme recklessness, then the same applies. After eight years of Bush, it seems that willful recklessness that places the vulnerable and powerless in great danger is not a good idea. The last is easily the least worrying - pure fabulism, exaggeration, and a completely random relationship to reality. Yes, we're all human. But again, sane people who tell fibs once dial them back subsequently - they don't repeat them, embellish them even more, and concoct - in Going Rogue - a simply baroque, incoherent and, yes, nutty version of a labor story that defies all we know about human biology, space and time.

But in many ways, my real frustration here is not with Palin, who has behaved in ways that are rational for a gambler of such proportions. My frustration is with the media who have never questioned, let alone seriously investigated, the story, and who have actually gone further and vouched for its truthfulness and accuracy without any independent confirmation.

I've written about this. Other Alaska bloggers and Outside bloggers have too. My wife and I subscribe to the scenario that wittingly or not, Palin, through hiding her pregnancy into its seventh month, having had previously undisclosed miscarriages, was trying to secretly kill a fetus she knew to have a major disability - a "God-given abortion," that wouldn't be questioned (should the information leak out) by her base in the evangelical and fundamentalist communities.

Palin has claimed more than once to have publicly produced Trig's birth certificate, but that is just one of her many lies. She hasn't. And won't.

In any case, Sullivan is right to observe that no matter which scenario is true, Palin's a nutcase in this regard, and the national media has utterly failed to cover the story in a professional way. Were Palin a black or Hispanic woman on public assistance, and had taken the "wild rides" from Houston to Wasilla at public expense, after her water had broken, and the information had become public the way it has in Palin's case, the woman could easily have been indicted by some GOP prosecutor with political aspirations.

II. Shannyn Moore was the first commentator to realize Palin's story couldn't hold the water the latter claimed to have broken. Over the past 28 months since Trig's birth, Moore has steered away from scenarios wilder than her very plausible "wild ride" one.

I have written hundreds of posts and articles about Sarah Palin. I've gotten into heat for asking whether she deserved the term "saint" more than "slut." Guess which term won the poll?

My property has been vandalized by her Palinbots. Progressive Alaska, though, has never been a predominently Palin site, nor have I sought that for PA. A number of other sites in Alaska, the lower 48 and abroad have done that. They are fun to read and often have important information about the sleazy ways Palin's meme and methods show the hypocrisy of American politics and popular culture.

However, I have to hand it to Shannyn for having handled this tricky story, from its beginnings to the present, with class, curiosity and from the perspective of a caring mom.

Here's Shannyn, back in February, discussing the "Wild Ride":

Part One:

Part Two:


eat whine rally said...

Courage? How about condescension. Curiosity? Being the "first" to mention something, and then only occasionally bringing it up again, only to disregard any new evidence, does not constitute curiosity. Continually referring to this as a "conspiracy," does not sound like someone interested in finding out the truth. Shannyn's "badge of honor" is that she has known, and knows Sarah Palin better than the rest of us Jimmy-come-latelys. Anyone who learns even a scintilla about SP, and does not want to get to the bottom of all of her lies and outrageous behavior, simply is more interested in their own future than America, and beyond. Shannyn only discussed SP's "wild ride" because real journalist bloggers continue to not turn their back on this. She had to "discuss" it to stay relevant, but had no interest in hearing what others had to say. Many of us are mothers, and that is exactly why this dangerous woman needs to be called out on her bs. As Shannyn herself said, "It works for her." I guess not actually pursuing this topic works for Shannyn.

BellP said...

I appreciate this post Phil.
I'm not sure why Sullivan chose Monday for his latest post on Babygate either except that the Gen. McChrystal-Hastings vs. Lara Logan topic about the media's role in reporting facts with/without filter was a hot topic on the Sunday talk shows.

I've seen the e-mails that went between ADN and the 1/2 term quitter so, I know the Babygate story was filtered in Alaska. The ADN screwed up.

About Shannyn Moore, I admire her courage too.
Lastly,we are all entitled to our opinions and that is all they are, opinions and gossip about Babygate, until someone comes through with some sort of presentable evidence.

Anonymous said...

One suggested amendment, Phil.

You should be more open about the names you have called the former Governor and Vice Presidential candidate. In 2010 alone your list should read: slut, whore and (today) potential murderer.

Thankfully you spared us your more characteristic f*ing... slut, whore and murderer.

Anonymous said...

I am not sure what your point is by reminding us Shannyn Moore questioned the Wild Ride story when it happened. Others like Andrew Sullivan, Palingates, Gryphen and others have continued to point out the inconsistencies of the story and probe for answers, while it doesn't appear that Shannyn has. Is this about making sure Shannyn gets "credit" when the truth comes out? I wonder why Shannyn stopped digging?

Anonymous said...


If memory serves, your wife was under the care of Dr. Cathy Baldwin-Johnson during one of her pregnancies, right? And you said that CBJ was a conservative, cautious physician with your wife.

So, what does not sound believable to me with your theory is why SP would deliver at the Mat-Su hospital, with not high-risk obstetrics or NICU, instead of the bigger hospital in Anchorage, where CBJ had privileges. That aspect just smells to me. This was the GOVERNOR of the state, at age 44 with a special-needs baby. Abundance of caution is the name of the game in obstetrics--for her to deliver at any place but the top hospital in Anchorage just doesn't seem plausible.

Anonymous said...

Shannyn is definitely courageous, but not for her comments on babygate. Well, maybe for her original ones. Since then there has basically been silence on that topic.

That doesn't take away from the fact that she is courageous for many other things she has done and said to expose Sarah Palin.

I hope that when the lies about Trig finally begin to come out, Shannyn won't be afraid to discuss them and I hope she credits all the people who have continuously been on this story.

Anonymous said...

Is there a police report on the vandalism, Phil? Or did you just fix it up and pass on the report?
Or...is this just another fabricated story about people harassing you?
If anyone is a whore it's you!

Anonymous said...

Based on my historical interactions with Moore, I wouldn't use "journalist" as a first description-- she sure wasn't interested in my point of view.

I'm neither a fan of Palin or Moore. I think they both have a surprising amount in common-- sometimes polar opposites turn out to be twins.

Anonymous said...


If Moore isn't a journalist, what is she?

I don't think she's credible.

Anonymous said...

I'd encourage you to reevaluate your hero.

Anonymous said...

I've noticed she hasn't been appearing on KO anymore maybe it's called looking out for ones self instead of getting to the truth.

Anonymous said...

when it comes to Babygate, by far Palingates has covered it the very best. Shannon has really avoided it since February or March.

Anonymous said...

Seems to me that there is something wrong about Trig.s birth day. I can't believe ANY hospital of any size would release a premie with jaundice and a hole in his heart and open themselves up for a malpractice suit. Regular procedure would have been to have a premie with issues transported to a hospital with a NICU for further evaluation. The whole Sarah story doesn't pass the "stink" test.

AK Sandhills said...

I have to agree with others who have commented here and reiterate that Shannyn simply has not pursued the Trig story the way other bloggers have, such as the fine researchers over at Palingates. Even Andrew Sullivan has covered the Trig story more than Shannyn and in doing so has exposed himself to great criticism.
I certainly would love to join in a shout-out to an Alaska-based reporter or blogger who is willing to research this story but as I see it, no one is willing to step up to the plate. I think the breaking news may come to us by way of Der Spiegel on line.

Ennealogic said...

It is nice that Shannyn has, from time to time, mentioned and allowed discussion about the "birth of Trig" question.

However, if you believe the story even in part, you have to come up with a reason for why Sarah Palin has not put an end to the questions and speculation. Shannyn's solution is that "it works for her," even though she is not sure why.

A simpler answer to why Sarah has not put an end to the questions is because she can't -- because she was not pregnant in April '08. She tries to make it "work for her" as best she can, yes, since she can't make it go away.

Please take note of the fact that she and her bevy of lawyers has never threatened any of us who have stated publicly that we believe her story is a complete fabrication. Why is that, when she's been so very quick to jump about other things -- like Shannyn's reporting about the iceberg rumors, or Gryphen's reporting about the divorce rumors?

She hasn't even mounted a personal campaign a la the David Letterman joke or the Family Guy criticism. She simply lets her minions try to marginalize and disparage those who continue to work on the so-called babygate story. Where are her Facebook entries decrying the efforts made by Sullivan or Palingates or several others? Where is the cease and desist order from Van Flein?

I suppose if you are trying to build your career as a trusted voice in radio, television or the 'net, you might want to turn a blind eye to certain topics. It's sad, though, especially because Sarah's dark cloud continues to swirl and spread and even if she never gets elected to another political office, the damage she has done over the past couple of years and the damage she continues to do will take a long time to repair. It is my firm conviction that should it be revealed that she never did make an oh-so-righteous choice to have a DS baby, her entire pedestal will crumble. She will no longer have even one leg to stand on.

Anonymous said...

Actually there were quite a few Alaska bloggers (that DON'T seek fame and fortune from their keystroking) that were questioning this story the day Palin announced she was 7 months pregnant. Some who actually witnessed Bristol pregnant in December of '07 and others that talked to people who knew she was pregnant wrote about it. Unfortunately they weren't attractive blondes that run around with the blogging "click" up here so they rarely get mentioned.

Shannon didn't start this but she could have used her power for some good to end it. She chose not to however, by saying she believes nothing Palin ever said except for this particular story which she believes is true. I'm not sure how you decide someone is a pathological liar and then choose to believe the biggest lie they have ever told.

I'm curious how you can state you believe she was going for a "fundie abortion" with her wild ride and then say she will never show the birth certificate. Why not? Under your premise, what would be on the birth certificate that she would need to hide?

The fact is she won't show the birth certificate because it will not show an April birthdate. Trig was born in January in Fairbanks, and not to Sarah Palin. That is the reason why she refuses to produce a birth certificate.

I appreciate you continuing to write about this nutcase but unfortunately your conclusion just doesn't add up. If it was as simple as reckless behavior it isn't going to say "mother behaved recklessly" on the birth certificate so there would be no reason not to release it. However, when that birth certificate (which we now know that they refused to give to the state insurance program as well thanks to the emails released by MSNBC) states that Trig was born in January in Fairbanks, then it makes a lot more sense not to release it.

The fact remains that Sarah Palin did not give birth to Trig until proven otherwise. It's as simple as that