What's new on the Sarah Palin front? How does a feeding frenzy over the statements of current and former Palin aides grab you? Sigh. It probably doesn't so, you know, click close tab and get on with your lives!
But -- if you must know -- some minor attention is being paid today to people with insider info on the mysteries of Palinland. One, disgruntled former Palinista Frank Bailey, is seeing the formal publication of his already heavily leaked "tell all" memoir. Another, well-known Palin confidant Rebecca Mansour, is having her Twitter direct messages splashed on the pages of the Daily Caller.
Mansour is the erudite and excitable Palinista whose fandom for the vice-presidential candidate earned her a seat at the table as both a behind-the-scenes adviser and as the presumed voice behind Palin's social media score-settling. The Daily Caller's Jonathan Strong ended up with a slew of her private Twitter messages to some unknown party, and the ones Strong chose to publish are reliably loose-tongued.
In some instances, they are sophmoric: RedState's Erick Erickson, for example, is described as a "douchebag" and a "greasy dumb-ass."
But in other cases, we're probably hearing the inside dope. Mitt Romney's "lackeys" are accused of "backstabbing [Palin] anonymously," and, yeah, they probably are! Mansour also holds California Senate also-ran Chuck DeVore in high contempt, dismissing him as someone who "wants to become a personality." If you've followed DeVore's recent career in politics -- such as it is -- it's hard to disagree with Mansour's assessment.
But the most potentially divisive revelations are Mansour's repeated criticisms of Bristol Palin:
But by far the most incendiary messages are about Palin’s daughter Bristol. Sent in the aftermath of Bristol announcing to Us Weekly she was planning to marry Levi Johnston, Mansour wrote, "I wish they were the Cleavers too. But it's life."
"Two words: Patti Davis. Okay three more: Ron Reagan Junior. Two more: Billy Carter. Doesn't your family have one?" Mansour said.
"She will hold her at arm's length. Even Thatcher was never able to disown her screw up son Mark. It's a Mom thing," Mansour wrote.
Other messages, including several TheDC has chosen not to publish, reveal details about the internal dynamics of the Palin family and Mansour asking the activist whether he knew "anyone upstanding? I'm serious?" who could replace Johnston as a suitable suitor for Bristol. But Mansour did add she was "impressed" by how much Bristol Palin loved her son.
I guess the upside here is that Bristol Palin's antics are sufficient to earn Sarah Palin a comparison to Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter and Margaret Thatcher.
For her part, Mansour says the messages collected by the Daliy Caller were sent as part of an effort to "calm down" one of Palin's supporters on Twitter, and that she was not speaking for Palin at the time they were sent. That explanation makes a certain amount of sense. But the big takeaway is that the advisers to famous politicians probably shouldn't send raw-throated direct messages on Twitter to random people.
Meanwhile, former Palin aide Frank Bailey is having his moment, now that his book "Blind Allegiance to Sarah Palin: A Memoir of Our Tumultuous Years" is finally hitting the bookshelves. Despite being what Politico describes as the "quintessential disgruntled employee," Bailey nevertheless had "access to Palin's passwords and her e-mail account." Here's a tip for professionals: Don't give your email passwords to underlings you don't plan on keeping happy!
Portions of the book were leaked back in February, to the author's dismay. (At the time, Bailey's camp blamed Joe McGinniss, who has a Palin book of his own coming out, for the leak, and accused McGinniss of attempting to decimate the market viability of "Blind Allegiance.")
Bailey's co-author tells the San Francisco Chronicle what you will get from their expose:
Morris describes the book as a memoir "with a character arc and a story arc" where Bailey evolves by the end.
What about the ethics of Bailey holding onto 60,000 e-mails? At the least, where's the omerta here? Alaska's attorney general is investigating any potential improprieties involving Bailey's use of the emails.
"All these emails he has were either to him or from him. He didn't go and hoard all of the government emails," Morris said, noting that "we probably quoted 1 percent of" Bailey's cache.
Not only did they only use a small fraction of the email backlog, they didn't use the best parts:
"There were so many more shocking revelations that Frank wasn't comfortable putting in, so we didn't. He wanted to tell the story about what was wrong as opposed to things about affairs and legitimacies and diet pills. Yes, he wants people to know what kind of person Sarah Palin is like, because that is important," Morris said.
Telling people that you are holding out on the best revelations is an odd way of selling the book. But then, remember, these are people who want us to know what Palin is really like. (By essentially confirming what we already believe, for money.)
But why did Bailey stick around in Palin's camp as long as he did, if he was so continually outraged? Was this part of his "character arc?" He explains, apparently in the third person:
"All I can tell you is that in life, it's easy for people to point. He still believed in the dream, by the way. He still believed that God had a plan for them. And he didn't like what was going on. It bothered him. He lost sleep over it," Bailey said.
"Why don't people leave million-dollar-a-year jobs when they see bad behavior?," said Bailey, who left his Wall Street job in 1993 over such behavior he saw.
Hey! Just a suggestion, but why don't you blow the whistle on the bad behavior you saw on Wall Street, seeing as how it actually adversely impacted the lives of ordinary Americans?
That will have to wait, I guess! In the meantime, the big scoop is that Sarah Palin's inner circle is maybe -- possibly! -- riven with a certain amount of dysfunction. I know, I know... this stuff is really hard to wrap your head around.