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REAGAN FLASHBACK: Ronald Reagan’s Faith

Posted by Sarah Palin Web Brigade on February 28, 2011

This  excellent article at The Washington Times discusses the importance of President Reagan’s faith in his personal life and in his policies.

Ronald Reagan’s faith

8:41 p.m., Wednesday, June 9, 2004

Ronald Reagan spoke eloquently in many ways. But the Great Communicator may be best remembered for his words of faith and the cultural changes that followed them. Faith was the wellspring of his optimism; it was the guiding star of his presidency. Mr. Reagan’s faith was the foundation of all he did, and it remains the cornerstone of his legacy.

Mr. Reagan spoke from faith when he saw dawn beyond America’s dark hours, when he saw freedom piercing the Iron Curtain. A committed Christian, Mr. Reagan was convinced that everything happened for a reason and that he had been chosen by God to play a part in America’s great mission.

Mr. Reagan’s faith was a rugged one: It sprang from the tempering of hard and bitter experience. His father was an alcoholic. His poor eyesight caused him to miss out on the greatest event of many of his generation — World War II. He was a good actor, but never a great one, and his divorce from Jane Wyman stunned him so greatly that he later said his life did not become whole again until he married Nancy Davis. His years of presidential triumph came only after he was within heartbeats of losing his life to an assassin’s bullet.

That faith was a part of all his words. In his “Time for Choosing” speech, Mr. Reagan declared, “We will preserve for our children this, the last best home of man on Earth, or we will sentence them to take the last step into a thousand years of darkness.” In his first inaugural address, he said, “I’m told that tens of thousands of prayer meetings are being held on this day, and I’m deeply grateful. We are a nation under God, and I believe God intended us to be free.”

His works reflected his faith as well. He spoke against abortion and for prayer in schools. He transformed cultural conservatism’s frown at vice into a smile at virtue. Mr. Reagan returned unapologetic patriotism to the national discourse; he restored personal freedom and responsibility as the touchstones of the national philosophy. While he saw moral courage as an essential weapon of free men, he made sure that the Cold Warriors were well-armed and well-equipped.

Mr. Reagan once remarked, “When the Lord calls me home, whenever that may be, I will leave with the greatest love for this country of ours and eternal optimism for its future.” Now, even his passing has become an expression of his faith. After years of darkness, Mr. Reagan has made his last journey to the shining city.

See also:

 
 

Keeping the Faith: Whittlesey remembers working with Reagan

   

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REAGAN FLASHBACK: Year of the Bible, 1983

Posted by Sarah Palin Web Brigade on February 28, 2011

On February 3, 1983, President Reagan declared 1983 the Year of the Bible.  This proclamation can be found in the Archives of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.

Proclamations, February 3, 1983

Proclamation 5018 — Year of the Bible, 1983

 February 3, 1983

By the President of the United Statesof America

A Proclamation

Of the many influences that have shaped the United States of America into a distinctive Nation and people, none may be said to be more fundamental and enduring than the Bible.

Deep religious beliefs stemming from the Old and New Testaments of the Bible inspired many of the early settlers of our country, providing them with the strength, character, convictions, and faith necessary to withstand great hardship and danger in this new and rugged land. These shared beliefs helped forge a sense of common purpose among the widely dispersed colonies — a sense of community which laid the foundation for the spirit of nationhood that was to develop in later decades.

The Bible and its teachings helped form the basis for the Founding Fathers’ abiding belief in the inalienable rights of the individual, rights which they found implicit in the Bible’s teachings of the inherent worth and dignity of each individual. This same sense of man patterned the convictions of those who framed the English system of law inherited by our own Nation, as well as the ideals set forth in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

For centuries the Bible’s emphasis on compassion and love for our neighbor has inspired institutional and governmental expressions of benevolent outreach such as private charity, the establishment of schools and hospitals, and the abolition of slavery.

Many of our greatest national leaders — among them Presidents Washington, Jackson, Lincoln, and Wilson — have recognized the influence of the Bible on our country’s development. The plainspoken Andrew Jackson referred to the Bible as no less than “the rock on which our Republic rests.” Today our beloved America and, indeed, the world, is facing a decade of enormous challenge. As a people we may well be tested as we have seldom, if ever, been tested before. We will need resources of spirit even more than resources of technology, education, and armaments. There could be no more fitting moment than now to reflect with gratitude, humility, and urgency upon the wisdom revealed to us in the writing that Abraham Lincoln called “the best gift God has ever given to man . . . But for it we could not know right from wrong.”

The Congress of the United States, in recognition of the unique contribution of the Bible in shaping the history and character of this Nation, and so many of its citizens, has by Senate Joint Resolution 165 authorized and requested the President to designate the year 1983 as the “Year of the Bible.”

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, in recognition of the contributions and influence of the Bible on our Republic and our people, do hereby proclaim 1983 the Year of the Bible in the United States. I encourage all citizens, each in his or her own way, to reexamine and rediscover its priceless and timeless message.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this third day of February, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventh.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 10:10 a.m., February 3, 1983]

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PALIN FLASHBACK: Palin’s farewell speech (Full transcript)

Posted by Sarah Palin Web Brigade on February 28, 2011

Full transcript of  Governor Palin’s  speech as posted  at International Business Times:

Palin’s farewell speech (Full transcript)

27 July 2009 @ 11:09 am EDT

Alaska Governor Sarah Palin stepped down from her position on Sunday at 3p.m. local time and delivered a farewell speech, the following is her speech full transcript:

“What an absolutely beautiful day it is, and it is my honor to speak to all Alaskans, to our Alaskan family this last time as your governor. And it is always great to be in Fairbanks. The rugged rugged hardy people that live up here and some of the most patriotic people whom you will ever know live here, and one thing that you are known for is your steadfast support of our military community up here and I thank you for that and thank you United States military for protecting the greatest nation on Earth. Together we stand.

And getting up here I say it is the best road trip in America soaring through nature’s finest show. Denali, the great one, soaring under the midnight sun. And then the extremes. In the winter time it’s the frozen road that is competing with the view of ice fogged frigid beauty, the cold though, doesn’t it split the Cheechakos from the Sourdoughs?

And then in the summertime such extreme summertime about a hundred and fifty degrees hotter than just some months ago, than just some months from now, with fireweed blooming along the frost heaves and merciless rivers that are rushing and carving and reminding us that here, Mother Nature wins. It is as throughout all Alaska that big wild good life teeming along the road that is north to the future.

That is what we get to see every day. Now what the rest of America gets to see along with us is in this last frontier there is hope and opportunity and there is country pride.

And it is our men and women in uniform securing it, and we are facing tough challenges in America with some seeming to just be Hell bent maybe on tearing down our nation, perpetuating some pessimism, and suggesting American apologetics, suggesting perhaps that our best days were yesterdays.

But as other people have asked, “How can that pessimism be, when proof of our greatness, our pride today is that we produce the great proud volunteers who sacrifice everything for country?” Now this week alone, Sean Parnell and I we’re on the, um, on Ft. Rich the base there, the army chapel, and we heard the last roll call, and the sounding of Taps for three very brave, very young Alaskan soldiers who just gave their all for all of us. Together we do stand with gratitude for our troops who protect all of our cherished freedoms, including our freedom of speech which, par for the course, I’m going to exercise.

And first, some straight talk for some, just some in the media because another right protected for all of us is freedom of the press, and you all have such important jobs reporting facts and informing the electorate, and exerting power to influence. You represent what could and should be a respected honest profession that could and should be the cornerstone of our democracy.

Democracy depends on you, and that is why, that’s why our troops are willing to die for you. So, how ’bout in honor of the American soldier, ya quite makin’ things up. And don’t underestimate the wisdom of the people, and one other thing for the media, our new governor has a very nice family too, so leave his kids alone.

OK, today is a beautiful day and today as we swear in Sean Parnell, no one will be happier than I to witness by God’s grace Alaskans with strength of character advancing our beloved state. Sean has that. Craig Campbell has that. I remember on that December day, we took the oath to uphold our state constitution, and it was written right here in Fairbanks by very wise pioneers.

We shared the vision for government that they ground in that document. Our founders wrote “all political power is inherent in the people. All government originates with the people. It’s founded upon their will only and it’s instituted for the good of the people as a whole.” Their remarkably succinct words guided us in all of our efforts in serving you and putting you first, and we have done our best to fulfill promises that I made on Alaska Day, 2005, when I first asked for the honor of serving you.

Remember then, our state so desired and so deserved ethics reform. We promised it, and now it is the law. Ironically, it needs additional reform to stop blatant abuse from partisan operatives, and I hope the lawmakers will continue that reform. We promised that you would finally see a fair return on your Alaskan owned natural resources so we build a new oil and gas appraisal system, an is an equitable formula to usher in a new era of competition and transparency and protection for Alaskans and the producers.

ACES incentivizes new exploration and it’s the exploration that is our future. It opens up oil basins and it ensures that the people will never be taken advantage of again. Don’t forget Alaskans you are the resource owners per our constitution and that’s why for instance last year when oil prices soared and state coffers swelled, but you were smacked with high energy prices, we sent you the energy rebate. See, it’s your money and I’ve always believed that you know how to better spend it than government can spend it.

I promised that we would protect this beautiful environment while safely and ethically developing resources, and we did. We built the Petroleum Oversight Office and a sub-cabinet to study climate conditions. And I promised I’d govern with fiscal restraint, so to not immorally burden futre generations. And we did…we slowed the rate of government growth and I vetoed hundreds of millions of dollars of excess and wtih lawmakers we saved billions for the future.

I promsed that we’d lead the charge to forward funding education, and hold schools accountable, and improve opportunities for special needs students and elevate vo-tech training and we paid down pension debt.

I promised that we would manage our fish and wildlife for abundance, and that we would defend the constitution, and we have, though outside special interest groups they still just don’t get it on this one. Let me tell you, Alaskans really need to stick together on this with new leadership in this area especially, encouraging new leadership… got to stiffen your spine to do what’s right for Alaska when the pressure mounts, because you’re going to see anti-hunting, anti-second amendment circuses from Hollywood and here’s how they do it.

They use these delicate, tiny, very talented celebrity starlets, they use Alaska as a fundraising tool for their anti-second amendment causes. Stand strong, and remind them patriots will protect our guaranteed, individual right to bear arms, and by the way, Hollywood needs to know, we eat, therefore we hunt.

I promised energy solutions and we have, we have a plan calling for 50% of our electricity generated by renewable resources and we can now insist that those who hold the leases to develop our resources that they do so now on Alaska’s terms. So now finally after decades of just talk, finally we’re seeing oil and gas drilling up there at Point Thompson.

And I promised that we would get a natural gas pipeline underway and we did. Since I was a little kid growing up here, I remember the discussions, especially the political discussions just talking about and hoping for and dreaming of commercializing our clean, abundant, needed natural gas.

Our gas line inducement act, AGIA, that was the game-changer and this is thanks to our outstanding gas line team, and the legislature adopting this law, 58-1. They knew, they know AGIA is the vehicle to drive this monumental energy project and bring everyone to the table, this bipartisan victory, it came from Alaskans working together with free market private sector principles, and now we are on the road to the largest private-sector energy project in the history of America. It is for Alaska’s future, it is for America’s energy independence and it will make us a more peaceful, prosperous and secure nation.

What I promised, we accomplished. “We” meaning state staff, amazing commissioners, great staff assisting them, and conscientious Alaskans outside the bureaucracy – Tom Van Flein, and Meg Stapleton and Kristan Cole, so many others, many volunteers who just stepped up to the challenge as good Alaskans, but nothing, nothing could have succeeded without my right-hand man Kris Perry. She is the sharpest, boldest, hardest-working partner. Kris is my right-hand man and much success is due to Kris.

So much success, and Alaska there is much good in store further down the road, but to reach it we must value and live the optimistic pioneering spirit that made this state proud and free, and we can resist enslavement to big central government that crushes hope and opportunity. Be wary of accepting government largess. It doesn’t come free and often, accepting it takes away everything that is free, melting into Washington’s powerful “care-taking” arms will just suck incentive to work hard and chart our own course right out of us, and that not only contributes to an unstable economy and dizzying national debt, but it does make us less free.

I resisted the stimulus package. I resisted the stimulus package and we have championed earmark reform, slashing earmark requests by 85% to break the cycle of dependency on a stifling, unsustainable federal agenda, and other states should follow this for their and for America’s stability. We don’t have to feel that we must beg an allowance from Washington, except to beg the allowance to be self-determined. See, to be self-sufficient, Alaska must be allowed to develop – to drill and build and climb, to fulfill statehood’s promise. At statehood we knew this.

At statehood we knew this, that we are responsible for ourselves and our families and our future, and fifty years later, please let’s not start believing that government is the answer. It can’t make you happy or healthy or wealthy or wise. What can? It is the wisdom of the people and our families and our small businesses, and industrious individuals, and it is God’s grace, helping those who help themselves, and then this allows that very generous voluntary hand up that we’re known for, enthusiastically providing those who need it.

Alaskans will remember that years ago, remember we sported the old bumper sticker that said, “Alaska. We Don’t Give a Darn How They Do It Outside?” Do you remember that? I remember that, and remember it was because we would be different. We’d roll up our sleeves, and we would diligently sow and reap, and we can still do this to carve wealth out of the wilderness and make our living on the water, with strong hands and innovative minds, now with smarter technology.

It is what our first people and our parents did. It worked, because they worked. We must be prudent and persistent and press for the people’s right to responsibly develop God-given resources for the maximum benefit of the people.

And we have come so far in just 50 years. We’re no longer a frontier outpost on the periphery of the world’s greatest nation. Now, as a contributor and a securer of America, we can attain our destiny in the promise of our motto “North to the Future.” See, the pressing issue of our time, it’s energy independence, because there is an inherent link between energy and security, and energy and prosperity. Alaska will lead with energy, we will prove you can be both pro-development and pro-environment, because no one loves their clean air and their land and their wildlife and their water more than an Alaskan. We will protect it.

Yes, America must look north to the future for security, for energy independence, for our strategic location on the globe. Alaska is the gate-keeper of the continent.

So, we are here today at a changing of the guard. Now, people who know me, and they know how much I love this state, some still are choosing not to hear why I made the decision to chart a new course to advance the state. And it should be so obvious to you. (indicating heckler) It is because I love Alaska this much, sir (at heckler) that I feel it is my duty to avoid the unproductive, typical, politics as usual, lame duck session in one’s last year in office. How does that benefit you? No, with this decision now, I will be able to fight even harder for you, for what is right, for truth. And I have never felt like you need a title to do that.

So, as we all move forward together, let’s vow to keep championing Alaska, to advocate responsible development, and smaller government, and freedom, and when I took the oath to serve you, I promised…remember I promised to steadfastly and doggedly guard the interests of this great state like that grizzly guards her cubs, as a mother naturally guards her own.

And I will keep that vow wherever the road may lead. Todd and I, and Track, Bristol, Tripp, Willow, Piper, Trig…I think I got ‘em all. We will forever be so grateful for the honor of our lifetime to have served you. Our whole big diverse full and fun family, we all thank you and I am very very blessed to have had their support all along, for Todd’s support. I am thankful too. I have been blessed to have been raised in this last frontier. Thank you for our home, Mom and Dad, because in Alaska it is not an easy living, but it is a good living, and here it is impossible to lose your way. Wherever the road may lead you, we have that steadying great north star to guide us home.

So let’s all enjoy the ride, and I thank you Alaska, and God bless Alaska and God bless America.”

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REAGAN FLASHBACK: The Legacy of Ronald Reagan

Posted by Sarah Palin Web Brigade on February 28, 2011

Excellent commentary on the legacy of President Ronald Reagan by The Heritage Foundation President Dr. Edwin Feulner:

The Legacy of Ronald Reagan

Published on June 9, 2004 by Edwin Feulner, Ph.D.

Conqueror of communism, sworn enemy of statism, leader of unshakable conviction and contagious optimism, Ronald Reagan became one of history’s heroes long before his death.

At a time when patriotism was mocked, he exposed the bankruptcy of modern liberalism and proved that true liberty is still a fighting faith. And like all great presidents, he created a yardstick against which future presidents will be measured.

President Reagan was not only congenitally optimistic; he could talk “through the camera” to the American people, making each viewer feel as if it were just the two of them. They were comfortable with him — and this made them comfortable with his ideas. He had no need for spin doctors to convey what he “really meant.” His message of lower taxes, smaller government and a strong U.S. military resonated deeply with the nation.

Indeed, no one since Franklin Roosevelt connected so well with ordinary Americans. In many ways, Reagan did for the 1980s what Roosevelt did for an America struggling with the Great Depression. He took an America suffering from “malaise” and double-digit inflation at home, as well as declining respect and foreign policy embarrassments abroad, and made its citizens believe again in their destiny as the “last best hope of mankind.”

Long before voters began pining for “authentic” candidates, President Reagan was the genuine article. What you saw was what you got. Those who say he was scripted — a former actor in the role of a lifetime — didn’t know the man.

Consider his famous description of the Soviet Union as an “evil empire.” Several close advisers warned against using what they considered inflammatory language, but in his view diplomatic euphemisms were allowing a morally and intellectually bankrupt regime to suppress the freedom of millions. History proved Reagan right. As Margaret Thatcher memorably put it, “He won the Cold War without firing a shot.”

Although Reagan believed in a strong America, he didn’t expect it to act as the world’s policeman. But he did believe in giving support to people fighting for freedom. “All they need is our support,” he said of Nicaragua in 1985. “All they need is proof that we care as much about the fight for freedom 700 miles from our shores as the Soviets care about the fight against freedom 5,000 miles from theirs.”

He also brought new perspectives to old problems. Take welfare. A full decade before Congress passed the most sweeping reform of government-sponsored charity, Reagan was laying the groundwork by pointing out that welfare — in FDR’s words, “a narcotic, a subtle destroyer of the human spirit” — should be measured not in terms of how much welfare recipients get, but “by how many of its recipients become independent of welfare.”

I first saw Ronald Reagan close up in 1973 when he testified on welfare reform before the Senate Finance Committee, displaying his rare talent for expressing conservative ideas that Americans found so compelling. In November 1978, my friend Richard Allen, Reagan’s director of foreign policy research, asked me to arrange a meeting between the candidate and journalists in London. Bill Deedes, then-editor of the Daily Telegraph, complained to me beforehand about coming to a breakfast meeting — “a barbaric American custom” — with this man who used to be governor of California. He left telling me it was one of the most interesting, fruitful and positive meetings he had ever attended on either side of the Atlantic.

But perhaps the most memorable moment of my personal encounters with President Reagan occurred on Oct. 3, 1983, at The Heritage Foundation’s 10th anniversary dinner in Washington, D.C. My wife, Linda, stood next to the president on the dais. He was so moved by the color guard’s presentation of the colors and the Navy Band’s playing of the national anthem that he leaned over to Linda and whispered, “That was so moving, it makes me want to clap. Too bad no one else is.” She replied, “Mr. President, I’ll bet if you did, everyone else would join in.” He did, and within a second 1,400 people were on their feet applauding.

In Ronald Reagan’s two terms as president, he gave America a transfusion of his own optimism and hope. He enkindled a sense of the possible, rescuing America from defeatism and much of the world from tyranny. He restored our confidence in the presidency itself, proving that Jefferson’s “splendid misery” could be simply splendid. And — not coincidentally — he helped create a safer, freer world. For that, his nation will be eternally grateful.

Ed Feulner is the president of The Heritage Foundation (heritage.org), a Washington-based public policy research institute.

First Appeared on FoxNews.com

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PALIN FLASHBACK: Michael Reagan: ‘The others don’t have the passion that Sarah Palin has’

Posted by Sarah Palin Web Brigade on February 28, 2011

President Reagan’s son Michael talks to Megyn Kelly at FOX News about Sarah Palin’s chances for the 2012 Presidential election.  He makes several comparisons between Governor Palin and his father Ronald Reagan.

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Giuliani Easily Wins “Vote For A Vice-President For Palin”Poll Amongst Experienced Potential Candidates

Posted by M.Joseph Sheppard At Palin4President2016 on February 28, 2011

Giulliani Easily Wins “Choose A Vice-President For Palin” Poll Amongst Experienced Potentials
Perhaps surprising to some pundits, but for very good reasons, Rudy Giulliani ran away with the “Choose a Vice-President For Palin” poll, as per the final results below, amongst potential VP’s with a record of long service and electoral victories.

Giulliani has not be mentioned by the media in this regard but he would provide excellent balance to a Palin headed ticket given his years of experience, international recognition, successful management of a major responsibility-New York City, and of course the legacy of 9/11.

Allan West was the runaway winner amongst all potential candidates and he too has many outstanding qualities, and with Florida being such a vital state his addition to a Palin ticket would have much to recommend it.

Perhaps surprisingly too is the relatively low vote for Marco Rubio who has often been mentioned as a strong VP possibility but who ran behind new high profile possible presidenial candidate Herman Cain.

The 230 vote poll was a realistic point of time snapshot especially as voters were only allowed one vote each.

Here are the final results:

Rudy Giuliani 15.22% (35 votes)

Condoleezza Rice 3.48% (8 votes)

Mike Huckabee 1.3% (3 votes)

Tim Pawlenty 0.87% (2 votes)

Mitt Romney 2.17% (5 votes)

Mike Pence 3.48% (8 votes)

Haley Barbour 0% (0 votes)

Herman Cain 5.65% (13 votes)

Newt Gingrich 0.87% (2 votes)

Chris Christie 2.61% (6 votes)

Marco Rubio 3.91% (9 votes)

Rick Perry 3.48% (8 votes)

Mitch Daniels 1.3% (3 votes)

Allen West 44.35% (102 votes)

Other: 11.3% (26 votes)

Total Votes: 230
Original Posting : M.Joseph Sheppard’s “A Point Of View

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Left Drops The Mask-They Hate Palin & Other Leading Republicans Because They are Deeply Christian

Posted by M.Joseph Sheppard At Palin4President2016 on February 28, 2011

The radical “progressive” left makes a show of hating (actually not strong enough a word) the Republican candidates ostensibly because of their “right wing views” as they define them. 

They pour on the hate because these Republicans have the temerity to oppose their chosen one and they pick on every flub, they use every sort of cheap invective and no curse word is too harsh for them to trot out.

All this in the nature of the unending warfare against the non-East/West Coast/Beltway mainstream, whom they, including candidate Obama, look down upon.  Obama let the mask slip when he talked about mainstream Americans “clinging to their guns and religion.”

But it is all a front for the real nature of their vitriolic hatred, which is that Palin and other leading Republicans walk the talk with their deep commitment to their Christian faith. So much so that in an article attacking the faith-based politicians entitled “God’s Own Party Waits For The Chosen One”  the author quotes statements of faith  from Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee, and Michele Bachman, who are ridiculed with utter mercilessness.

Then the personality of each Christian is lampooned – Huckabee, a  former Baptist minister for goodness sake – is sarcastically said to follow God on Twitter and has a two-way conversation. Of Bachmann, he says she “may not have the smarts to get to the White House, but she does have the cash and the connections. And among those connections, apparently, is a direct line to the Almighty. and then when she is quoted “You are now looking at a fool for Christ. This is a fool for Christ.” Then he smugly writes:

“Truer words were never spoken.”

As usual, the very worst attack is reserved for Palin: “But as it turns out, Sarah Palin doesn’t just have the Lord in her corner, she’s also His spokesman.” And further, “A jaw-dropping expose in Vanity Fair revealed the shocking extent of Palin’s divine narcissism” Actually a jaw-dropping hatchet job, which even embarrassed moderate Dems with its nastiness.

Proving the the short-sighted idiocy of these rabid liberals and their anti-faith led Republican candidate hatred, they are too blind to see that the very statements they hold up to ridicule are clear, deeply held, honest, and truly Christian articles of a strong ethical way of life. To so ridicule these aspects of faith is to ridicule and insult the very Gospels on which true Christian life and faith is based.

Rather than subjecting Palin to mockery by the wider public, they have done her a favor by showing where the well spring of her drive to be a servant comes from.

The execrable leftist Crooks & Liars ( they are not worth linking to) saw fit to run with this attack on people’s genuinely held faith – which, is of course, no surprise.

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PALIN FLASHBACK: Palin joins nation’s elite at exclusive dinner

Posted by Sarah Palin Web Brigade on February 27, 2011

Governor Palin, accompanied by Meg Stapleton, arrives at the Capital Hilton in Washington, D. C. for the exclusive Alfalfa Dinner.

Erika Bolstad at the Alaska Daily News wrote about Governor Palin’s attendance at the exclusive Alfalfa Club in Washington, D. C.  in January, 2009. 

Palin joins nation’s elite at exclusive dinner

EXCLUSIVE: Palin’s higher profile got her into the annual dinner.

By ERIKA BOLSTAD

Published: January 31st, 2009 08:29 PM
Last Modified: February 1st, 2009 12:27 AM

WASHINGTON — Mere months ago, Gov. Sarah Palin was introduced to the world as a hockey mom who hunts and fishes, remains grounded in small-town values and is married to her blue-collar, snowmachine-loving high school sweetheart.

Saturday night, Palin was whisked into the governors-and-Cabinet-members-only section of one of the capital’s most exclusive parties: the Alfalfa Club dinner. Wearing an elegant black satin evening gown and a matching wrap, hair loose to her shoulders, Palin was about as far away as anyone can get from field-dressing a moose.

The dinner was held in the heart of Washington, D.C., at the Capital Hilton within sight of the White House. Palin’s invitation to the Alfalfa Club was “a coup,” said Letitia Baldrige, who served as the White House social secretary and chief of staff to Jacqueline Kennedy.

“It’s something that everybody who’s anybody in politics wants to be invited to,” Baldrige said.

If a roasting by the most powerful people in America is a sign you’ve made it, then Palin had clearly arrived. Or, at the very least, was acknowledged Saturday night as one of the most interesting women in American politics.

The outgoing president of the Alfalfa Club, Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, teased Palin in a way allowable only by a fellow veteran of the vice presidential campaign trail.

“I was seriously being considered to be McCain’s pick for vice president,” said Lieberman, Al Gore’s 2000 running mate and a former Democrat who campaigned for Sen. John McCain this year.

“But then John called me,” Lieberman said. “As he always does, he got right to the point. He said, ‘Joe, I can’t do it. I need more than just a pretty face.’

“I was so close. As close as Alaska is to Russia. You could almost say that from my doorstep I could see the vice president’s mansion,” he said.

The club’s roots are deep in Washington. While it has a prestigious guest list these days, it was a drinking club first and foremost when it was founded in 1913, said Donald Ritchie, the associate historian of the U.S. Senate. That’s where Alfalfa comes in — the alfalfa plant “put down deep roots and could always get a drink,” Ritchie said. The plant would “persevere to get a drink, and so would they.”

ultra-exclusive

The Alfalfa Club was so prestigious that in the 1920s and ’30s, Washington newspapers would print the names of attendees, Ritchie said. The annual dinner remains an enduring tradition that few besides insiders are allowed to glimpse.

Because its founders were Southerners — and in 1913, Washington was a Southern town — they chose Gen. Robert E. Lee’s birthday for the date of their annual celebration. The dinner continues to be around Lee’s birthday, Jan. 19, although the club’s origins appear to have little other connection to the Civil War general.

The guest list is the embodiment of the old question: If you could have a dinner party and invite anyone, who would be on your guest list? Did we mention that President Barack Obama was there, telling jokes?

“I know that many of you are aware that this dinner began almost 100 years ago as a way to celebrate the birthday of Gen. Robert E. Lee,” Obama said. “If he were here with us tonight, the general would be 202 years old. And very confused.”

The governor’s office wouldn’t say who invited Palin, but by tradition, each member is allowed two guests.

Her host could be among any number of famous, powerful or once-powerful members, including Palin’s fellow Alaskan, former U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens, who also attended Saturday’s dinner.

Palin’s presidential running mate, Sen. John McCain, is a member. So is the man whose job she wanted: Vice President Joe Biden.

ted in the spotlight

According to accounts of the dinners of the past decade, the event retains the air of a 1950s fraternity banquet. Typically, the club’s members pick an honorary “president” each year — and do little else officially. In 2003, the Washington Post’s account reported that Stevens accepted the Alfalfans’ presidential nomination wearing a fur hat, sealskin vest and mukluks, and brandishing an oosik, a walrus penis bone.

Stevens laid out his health care platform, which, according to the Post, was to find a cure for frostbite. “When it comes to frostbite,” said Stevens, then 79, “what you have to worry about is nose, toes and something that at my age may as well be froze.”

Former first lady Barbara Bush had this comeback, according to the Post: “Ted, this is the third time you’ve brought one of those walrus things to this dinner. I hate to think what went on here before women were admitted.”

The Alfalfa Club did not allow women as members until 1993. But Saturday night, dozens of powerful women streamed in, some members, some guests: Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, NBC News correspondent Andrea Mitchell on the arm of her husband, Alan Greenspan. And Palin.

palin keeps low profile

The governor’s weekend itinerary wasn’t limited to the Alfalfa Club. It included a Friday night dinner at the home of Fred Malek, who headed McCain’s campaign finance committee. She also was scheduled to meet with her Washington staff and attend a luncheon at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Palin has kept a low profile on this trip. She turned down all requests for interviews, including the other invitations that indicate one’s arrival in Washington: appearances on the Sunday morning talk shows. She also didn’t attend any events that could be perceived as partisan, including the winter meeting of the Republican National Committee, also this weekend.

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment »

What Sarah Palin Means to the World

Posted by ehvogel on February 27, 2011

I’ve been contemplating all that it means for Sarah Palin to run for the presidency of the United States. Yes, she’s fiscally conservative, so check one off for the Wisconsin debate to end the grip of unions on our government budgets. Yes, she’s pro-life and pro-marriage, as defined by DOMA, so check one off for social conservatives. She’s also against the ground-zero mosque, so check one off for our Christian heritage. She was also spot-on regarding enforcing a no-fly zone over Libya, so check one off for foreign affairs.

My thoughts then drifted to energy. Score another one for Sarah from the outset, as she’s been saying “drill, baby, drill” since drilling was cool. Now it’s been halted, thanks to Obama. I then thought about Obamacare. Yep, check one off there as well. Her “death panels” comment started the bill on its path to destruction, God willing.

Now I’m left with a different thought. What does Sarah Palin mean to the world?

Sarah Palin is the only politician in the world who can calm it. She doesn’t have to do much, she only has to convey a sense of resolve. I haven’t seen any resolve from Washington regarding all the events that are unfolding in the Mideast and elsewhere. I haven’t seen anyone step up on the world stage and say that this is NOT the end of times. (I’ve heard that….have you?) I don’t believe it, however, because I know how resilient the American economy is. And, after all, isn’t that what all the unrest is about: the economy?

Sarah Palin could announce that she will run for President of the United States, but it won’t be a simple announcement that will make a difference. It will be her personality and resolve to champion all things that make this country great that will have an impact. Hers is an understanding of this country’s greatness that mirrors the majority of Americans. The majority of Americans just don’t yet know that. They still only know the crap that’s being fed them by the left-wing, lamestream media. But that will change.

Ronald Reagan captured our sense of resolve and evoked a “can do” attitude when he began his campaign, which we sorely need right now. Barack Obama has done his level best to subvert our lofty expectations of the future and why? It’s quite simple, really. Barack Obama believes that government is the end-all, be-all of the American experience, which is as far from the truth as possible. Without the understanding that it’s the American people that make this country great, he is doomed. And without a strong America leading the way, our world is doomed to experience more unrest like we see today in the Mideast, northern Africa and elsewhere.

When the world senses a fading American dream, it loses its bearings and rightly so. We have to lead by example, not words. We have to lead by doing, not hoping. Moreover, we can only return to greatness if our leaders in Washington believe the same things that we do and get out of our way to prove it.

Sarah Palin oozes confidence in the American dream. She knows what will inspire us and it isn’t some government program. She has confidence in us and, so far, she’s the only politician that seems to understand that and has understood it from the beginning.

The minute that Ronald Reagan was elected President, the Iran hostage situation was over. The hostage takers knew their days were numbered with Reagan in office and they were right. The minute that Sarah Palin is elected President, the world will know that the United States has resurrected itself and act accordingly, deferring to principled leadership. That, my friends, is what Sarah Palin means to the world.

Cross-posted on Generational Dysfunction.

Posted in 2012, Sarah Palin | Tagged: , | 4 Comments »

Four-Time Iron Dog Winner Todd Palin and 2008 Iron Dog Winner Eric Quam Place Second in 2011 Iron Dog Race

Posted by Sarah Palin Web Brigade on February 27, 2011

Eric Quam (left) and Todd Palin (right) cross finish line in Fairbanks 17 minutes behind Huntington-Olds team (Photo by Kortnie Horazdovsky at KTUU.com)

The Anchorage Daily News has posted an excellent overall summary of the 2011 Iron Dog race. However, they stated in error that Todd Palin is a three-time Iron Dog winner. This error was subsequently repeated several times across the news services. As we wrote here, the former First Dude was an Iron dog champion in 1995, 2000 (mentioned here), 2002, and 2007.  (Also see our IronDog Race page.) We at SPWB  are rooting for Win Number 5 for Todd Palin’s Iron Dog team in 2012.

This year, Team 11 made it to Nome in second place by a mere 4 minutes.  Later they were leading the pack out of  Nenana, but a problem with one of the skis on Todd’s snowmachine cost them the final victory by 17 minutes.  But second place in the world’s toughest long distance race is nothing to sneeze at.  Congratulations, Todd Palin and Eric Baum!

Our congratulations also go to Tyler Huntington and Chris Olds for their win and a job well done.

The ADN reported

Tyler Huntington of Fairbanks and Chris Olds of Eagle River repeated as Iron Dog champions early Saturday evening, passing the team of Todd Palin and Eric Quam in the final 100 miles of the 2,000-mile snowmachine race across Alaska.

Huntington and Olds eked out a two-minute lead going into Tanana earlier Saturday.

But Palin, a three-time champ, and Quam, a 2008 champ, surged past them and reached Nenana 17 minutes ahead of Huntington and Olds.

But after leaving Nenana, Palin had trouble with one of the skis on his Arctic Cat F6 600 and had to stop to fix it, giving Huntington and Olds the break they needed.

They claimed the lead on the 77-mile run from Nenana to North Pole, arriving at North Pole with a 14-minute lead that more than held up over the final 35 miles to Fairbanks.

Huntington and Olds, who will share the first-place prize of $50,000, reached the finish line at 5:51 p.m. Saturday. Palin and Quam finished at 6:09 p.m. and the father-son team of Scott and Cory Davis claimed third place about 10 minutes later.

Much of the pace and outcome of the 26th edition of the race was dictated by weather.

The early leaders, Marc McKenna and Dusty Van Meter, lost command when their sleds got stuck in overflow on the Yukon River near Nulato.

And for the better part of two days, the race stalled in Nome because of what officials called “life-threatening” trail conditions. Race officials ordered the race run under a yellow caution flag for the first 250 miles of the trip to Fairbanks, from Nome to Unalakleet

Greg Johnson at The Frontiersman reported:

After a final day of racing that could’ve been scripted by a Hollywood screenwriter, Tyler Huntington and Chris Olds are the 2011 Iron Dog champions.

The team of Huntington and Olds crossed the finish line of the 2,000-mile snowmachine race in Fairbanks at 5:51 p.m., Saturday, about 18 minutes ahead of the second-place team of Todd Palin and Eric Quam. Palin’s hometown is Wasilla, while Quam is from Palmer. Palin and Quam were actually in the lead coming down the homestretch into Fairbanks, but Palin suffered a mechanical issue that allowed Huntington and Olds to pass them.

“We had all kinds of neck-and-neck and back-and-forth going on,” said Iron Dog Executive Director Kevin Kastner. “At one point, (Marc) McKenna and (Dustin) Van Meter were blasting along and they went into the drink. In the end, the net result that ended up making the decision was Palin had an accident and nearly tore the ski off his sled.”

McKenna and Van Meter led the race into Nome at the halfway checkpoint, when most of the racers were held up by bad weather. In fact, race officials on Thursday thought the delays would push the expected finish from Saturday to Sunday, but the weather cleared up enough to allow the racers to continue, Kastner said.

[...]

The result, he said, was a successful finish that gave fans some excitement in Fairbanks. Last year’s winner came in two hours before the second-place finisher, he said. On Saturday, the top seven teams were all in less than two hours from each other.

Despite the weather delays and challenges, 12 teams finished the Iron Dog, one more than last year, Kastner said. For winning the Iron Dog, Huntington and Olds earned $50,000.

Renee Thony at the Daily News-Miner wrote:

At 3:55 p.m. Saturday, Tyler Huntington and Chris Olds trailed race leaders Todd Palin and Eric Quam by 17 minutes, but when 5:51 rolled around, team No. 10, the Huntington-Olds duo, were first across the finish line of the 2011 Iron Dog snowmachine race.

“I feel like 25,000 bucks,” Huntington said after crossing the finish line and passing the safety inspection on the Chena River in downtown Fairbanks. The team won the $50,000 paycheck for the second year in a row.

Palin and Quam, team No. 11, finished second at 6:09.

The two teams were neck-in-neck throughout the day Saturday, and it was near the mouth of the Chena that Olds said he and Huntington caught up to Palin and Quam.

“We were taking it easy heading into Nenana and then we just took off after that,” he said, adding that he speculates Team 11 ran into some trouble along the way and that’s why his team managed to catch up. “We caught up with those guys around the mouth of the Chena.”

As he looked down at the left front ski of his sled, secured with a bright green rope, Palin confirmed Olds’ assumptions.

“The sleds looked good until about 60 miles ago,” the 18-time Iron Dog competitor said. “It’s just part of the race, though. You can be clean up until the very end.”

Huntington and Olds saw their fair share of troubles, as well, including a blown belt in Manley.

“On the first day, we got, well not really lost,” Olds said, “but we just misplaced the trail and that wasted some time. These were excellent machines for us. We didn’t have to turn a wrench on them. They were so durable.”

Whispers heard around the finish line were mostly about Mother Nature and how she had dictated most of this year’s race. For the better part of two days, the race was stalled in Nome on account of “life-threatening” conditions. Race officials postponed the restart there on Thursday and ordered the race to be put under a yellow flag for the first 250 miles of the return to Fairbanks.

“There was lots of snow this year from beginning to end,” Olds said of the course. “It was crazy.”

“Lots of snow,” Huntington, a Fairbanks native, added, “but we just kept going and going and going. When we got stuck, we just got unstuck.”

Although he said he saw “little trail, all snow,” Quam was pleased with the hospitality of the villages the racers stopped in along the way.

“The villages were really good. They always are,” he said. “They were so warm to take us into their homes and take care of us.”

Piper Palin waits to wave the checkered flag when her father crosses the 2011 Iron Dog finish line. (Photo by Tim Akimoff at KTUU.com)

KTUU-TV  reported:

As she does more often than not, Mother Nature dictated the terms of the 2011 Iron Dog snowmachine race, but the team of Tyler Huntington and Chris Olds came prepared and won the trophy this year.

The defending Iron Dog champions crossed the finish line Saturday evening to a cheering crowd in downtown Fairbanks.

This year Olds and Huntington rode to bring awareness to Alaska’s high suicide rate, working with state agencies to distribute educational material to the villages along the course route.

The top five money winners in the 2011 Iron Dog were: #10 Huntington/Olds, #11 Palin/Quam, #7 Davis and Davis, #21 Branholm and Spernak, #14 McKenna and Van Meter.

“It feels great,” Tyler Huntington said. “Like $25,000 bucks.” 

Racers survived tough, wet, snowy conditions all the way to Nome, and then blizzard-like conditions held them up for a day in Nome.

Race Marshal Chris Graeber had racers proceed under a yellow caution flag from Nome back to Unalakleet, where the race was officially restarted.

“We kept going as fast as we can as as long as we can,” Huntington said. “We kind of toughed it out.”

A tight race between Team 10 Huntington/Olds and Team 11 Palin/Quam ensued, with the lead changing hands several times down the icy river on a picture-perfect day.

KTUU-TV, which livestreamed the 2011 Iron Dog finish, also has 4 videoclips of the event and a photogallery of the finish.  There is also a photogallery of the Iron Dog Trail.

The Anchorage Daily News also has a photogallery of the 2011 Iron Dog start at Big Lake.

Posted in Uncategorized | 5 Comments »

 
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