Why Not Count Refueling Stops?


Heck, I stopped in Bucharest, Romania for refueling in the middle of the night. I was traveling with former Treasury Secretary and Senator Lloyd Bentsen, for Secretary of State Alexander Haig, United Technologies Chairman & CEO George David and others.
At 3 am, on hopped for a few minutes Romania’s Minister of Transportation who was the brother of the guy who owned the plane we were on. He handed us a package about Romania’s financial institutions and other good investments for us to consider and took off in a fleet of cars that sped across the tarmac.
I will count Bucharest on my Facebook “Where I have been” account (I did walk off the plane and stood on the runway) — but Sarah Palin is getting some heat after saying she had been to Ireland event though she was there just to refuel.
The bigger issue that does matter is that the McCain/Palin team has been saying that she went to Iraq during her trip to see Alaska National Guard troops, but now are revising to say she did not go into Iraq. There have now been multiple revisions to the official record.
Anne Kornblut posted this response from the Obama campaign:

“The McCain campaign said Governor Palin opposed the Bridge to Nowhere, but now we know she supported it. They said she didn’t seek earmarks, but now we know she hired a lobbyist to get millions in pork for her town and her state. They said she visited Iraq, but today we learned that she only stopped at the border. Americans are starting to wonder, is there anything the McCain campaign isn’t lying about?”

It was Palin’s first big international trip. Kuwait, Iraq, Qatar, Dubai, Iran. . .they all sound so similar.
We shouldn’t be giving her such a hard time. She was just a little lost and confused.
— Steve Clemons


13 comments on “Why Not Count Refueling Stops?

  1. George-ProgressiveFromOregon says:

    “ban books. Now Palin says that she just inquired about hypothetically- 3 times.”
    I read reports from Alaskan newspapers and other reliable sources that she also asked the city council repeatedly. Enough times that a citizen recall committee was formed. The council negotiated a compromise whereby the city hired a city mgr and Palin became a figurehead.
    There is a wealth of information about Fraud Palin in the Alaska papers, Juneau, Anchorage, Fairbanks. Give ’em a read, you’ll discover a lot.
    Look at the mismanagement of the property purchase for the money pit sports arena – the city having to pay $1.2mil instead of $125k is DIRECTLY Palin’s fault for not signing & returning the earnest money agreement.


  2. jon says:

    Steve, the lyrics of the Beatle’s ‘Nowhere Man’ sprang to mind as
    I read your piece.
    And I thought the Republicans were being audacious when they
    ran W using a ‘Being There’ strategery. If running Palin doesn’t
    show confidence, I don’t want to know what they’re thinking.
    Obviously it’s appalling that she can’t remember where she’s
    actually been, that she’s resorting to the crudest and silliest sort
    of resume inflation, and then basking in the inaccuracies and
    ignorance this reveals.
    But, seriously, I don’t believe that you can quantify a person’s
    fitness to lead, acumen, or grasp of foreign policy issues simply
    on the basis of nations visited, time spent in-country, hands
    shaken or leaders met. I think we’ve had some gifted politicians
    who had never been out of the country or met many foreigners
    before they came to excel at international relations, and others
    with good international experience who later did not perform
    very well.
    I think that if Palin does have any impact on foreign policy that
    it would be detrimental. But that is not linked to how well she
    can (or cannot) see Russia from her kitchen window.


  3. NWdude says:

    And… she now is claiming one trip to Canada last year (BTW — how can someone who lives in Alaska only have been to Canada once?! Very odd), and a trip to Mexico — which the campaign claims was a recreational trip. I’m thinking more like a shopping trip to Tijuana.
    So, yes, rest assured, Governor Palin is very internationally traveled and must know a lot now about foreign issues and policy.


  4. cerberus says:

    Follow up…
    What really blows my mind is how clueless everyone is about this. All this crap about her lack of experience, the babies, her hypocrisy, her anti-science/polar bear stance, her lies, exxagerations etc. is garbage. It’s true, but it’s not what is going to work.
    The one thing that will skewer her is not experience. It is that SHE IS INCOMPETENT. She cannot run government without running up enormous bills and leaving it to other people to pay for. She cannot run government without huge payouts from easy oil funds, which the entire nation does not have. She cannot run government without asking for enormous payouts from a higher authority.
    Reformer? She chased down more earmarks per capita than any other state in the union.
    It’s so simple and yet it’s not being pointed out hardly at all. Sarah Palin’s weak spot is not experience, nor hypocrisy, nor radical conservatism, nor any of her other many faults.
    Sarah Palin’s political achilles heel is her incompetence.


  5. cerberus says:

    She came into her mayoral office with no debt. She left the town with a $22 million albatross. Plus another few hundred million in earmarks when as governor.
    She is going to fit into Washington very well.
    America better be real damned careful here. We’re about to put into office the very same thing we’ve grown to hate the past eight years.
    We get what we deserve.


  6. Jim Rock says:

    This is all incredible. Complete and total inexperience . . . plus a bunch of lies. They deserve a decisive defeat with a massive footnote that we WILL NOT take it and lying is not OK in politics.


  7. Paul Norheim says:

    I`ve spent 11 years in Africa, four of them at a Norwegian boarding school in
    Addis Ababa, more than thirty years ago.
    Sarah Palin`s experience abroad is equivalent to what I learned about Africa
    while eating meatballs or playing soccer with other Norwegian kids in the capital
    of Ethiopia.


  8. YY says:

    For understanding culture and foreign relations, visiting American military installations do not really add up to much anyway, regardless of what geography they are in and how many installations are visited. As to transit lounges and airport runways, what’s there to say?


  9. Bob W. says:

    More in the Palin “Lies to Nowhere” series.
    1. Charging victims of sexual assault for forensic kits/exams: As mayor of Wasilla, she charged victims of sexual assualt for the forensic kits. She may have done so because she believes that life “begins at rape”, and forensic exams often end with an offer of emergency contraception.
    The McCain campaign denies it. Apparently their vetting did not include a look at the Wasilla budget under Palin, which shows that she eliminated the funds which had previously been included for this purpose.
    2. Library book censorship: As mayor of Wasilla, she tried to have the librarian ban books. Now Palin says that she just inquired about hypothetically- 3 times. Is there something she didn’t understand about the first answer. In any case, she fired the librarian soon thereafter- and due to a public outcry she reinstated her.
    Sounds eerily similar to Troopergate, wherein she is claiming that the calls and e-mails that she, her husband, and staff made to the Public Safety commissioner were not pressure, and had nothing to do with him being fired.


  10. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Well, she can claim to have been on Mars as well. The problem, as I see it, is that she didn’t book a round trip ticket. So, as soon as she returns to Earth, maybe we’ll get the straight scoop.
    Until then, we’ll just have to depend on Tahoe to keep us up to date. And he’s not a troll or a jackass. But due to a total lack of evidence to support the assertion that he is a wife beater, I think it is safe to assume that he is.


  11. Bob W. says:

    People in Alaska are now referring to the mounting number of Palin’s untruthful statements as the “Lies to Nowhere.”
    Whether bridge projects, pretending to be a fiscal conservative while increasing the state budget by 35% in 2 years;earmarks; foreign travel;global warming, Palin’s record simply does not hold up to scrutiny.
    The big problem is not just that she and McCain are making statements which they know to be false; they keep repeating them after confronted with the facts.
    The McCain/Palin team are trusting that the American people will treat the period between now and the election as some type of reality show, so that their campaign will not have to face reality itself.


  12. a-j says:

    The McCain campaign hopes the media won’t bother to publish the facts, only their clumsy and clueless lies… but even sold-out infotainment specialists have their limits.


  13. carsick says:

    As if it wasn’t a big enough slap in the face for McCain to pick a complete unknown exotic governor with a broadcasting degree, now they are padding her experience in ways that are easy to check and prove wrong.
    Why are they so certain that voters are idiots? Sure, the media usually presents things as he said/she said and campaigns can manipulate that lazy pretend balance, but when a campaign starts flinging such easily debunked stories, the press finally feels pushed to investigate.
    Is the McCain campaign depending on people hating the media so much that they will believe the “straight talk” “maverick” POW despite their own eyes?
    They must have some very interesting internal polling or they must have a vast supply of psychedelics they plan on slipping into the water system in early November.


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