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Palin and Beck use 9/11 for Personal Fame

September 10, 2010

(S)he Who Counts the Vote

September 6, 2010

By Zach Roberts


I’ve covered elections for five years now, focusing on election integrity issues – vote theft, machine issues, etc. Through those years, I’ve filmed Natives voting in Indian country in the Southwest, had secret off-the-record conversations with precinct captains in New Orleans, and even talked to a surfer who lost an election because her own party refused to count her write-in votes. In nearly all the stories I’ve covered and researched, absentee ballots are the deciding factor.

There’s a lot that can go wrong with them, and a lot that can be made to go wrong with them. Talk to Kerry, Gore, Norm Coleman – they would tell you stories on how even a stray mark can throw out a ballot in many states. Which is why, when I was standing in the room where they were counting absentee ballots for the Miller/Murkowski primary, I asked a kind looking older gentlemen wearing a sticker identifying himself as a member of the Joe Miller camp, “Are you questioning any of the absentee ballots for stray marks?” He said, “No. It’s all pretty straightforward.”

I was comforted by that answer but then he continued talking. At first I didn’t pay that much attention as I was busy filming.

Miller Sticker: “The thing about state workers…About 90% of them are women. So when you’re handling elections of a man and woman candidate…”

He let the statement drop.

At first I took the “90%” as a joke, and didn’t really process the second part, and I responded “That’s everywhere… I’ve covered a lot of vote counts and that sort of thing in Arizona, New Mexico, California it’s pretty much a universal…” which is true.

A really good percentage of the election day workers and volunteers are older woman. Oddly, in all my days in this field, I’ve never heard that questioned. It’s always been joked about, but within the context of respect. That these people took the time out of their day to do an incredibly boring (but rewarding) job of manning a table, and dealing with often unhappy people who have driven to the wrong precinct, or can’t find their name on the list. Sometime these blue-haired mavens can be a bit testy toward journalists but more often than not they are a great resource for information, directions and a good laugh.

It was only after he continued down the sexist(?) line of thought, that I realized that it wasn’t a light-hearted joke.

Miller Sticker Guy: “Their pay is so low, I think that’s why it’s all women. We need some equal opportunity down here to get some men.”

He was being serious. Not only was he suggesting that the Board of Elections needed stronger EOP implementation (Which is quite interesting coming from a man with a Miller sticker), but he was suggesting that the kindly women that were counting the votes were potentially so sexist themselves, that they would have thrown out the bearded one’s votes. I guess as most of the rabid Palin supporters always say to Palin’s female detractors… “They’re just jealous because (s)he’s so beautiful.”

Just a note to the Miller Sticker Guy, Russell Kurt, a Joe Miller ‘counter,’ next time you’re making unfunny sexist comments to random guy with a camera… make sure that guy doesn’t have a sticker on that says “THE MUDFLATS.”

Zach Roberts is currently in Anchorage filming “The Rogue Candidate: Sarah Palin’s REAL Alaska.” (Http:// He previously worked with BBC journalist Greg Palast as a researcher and producer. Follow him on twitter at zdroberts. If you’re in the Anchorage area please shoot him an e-mail if you’d like to share your thoughts on camera about Alaskan politics

AK Dem Party Raising money separately for Scott McAdams?

August 31, 2010

#JustSayin – Is this normal? Will they really give him access to this? Or are they just trying to raise money for the statewide party on his name? Where were they 2 weeks ago before he become the most important candidate in this mid-term election?

Normally I wouldn’t be suspicious of this activity from a state party, because normally the state supports it’s candidates. Normal, though, doesn’t really have any place in Alaska elections… especially in this election. The fact that the party didn’t step up to quell the dangerous rumors of a candidate switcheroo makes me wonder if he has the true support of the state party. Scott used the very important words “we will win” the other night. The italics were his emphasis. The members of the party from Begich to Hollis French all have given Scott there support but I have heard little from the state party.

If McAdams can win this, and I think he can, he’ll need the party behind him. I’m from out of state so I’m getting a quick crash course in AK politics but I’ve seen this before in my home state of NY. A friend of mine Jonathan Tasini, ( is having the similar problems in NYC. The old Democratic guard gets frightened by change.

As a NY’er in Alaska, we’ll take McAdams as an apology for the other small town Mayor you tried to give us. The lower 48 is quickly realizing what a terrific progressive candidate Alaska Scott McAdams would be – and what an amazing Senator he could become.

We’ll even try to send you an extra couple of bucks to take on the Tea Party.

Send him to DC and when you come down here we won’t ask you if you know Sarah Palin, we’ll thank you for giving Senator McAdams.

Sen. Ted Stevens Funeral Procession

August 18, 2010

Sen. Ted Stevens Funeral Procession

Sarah Palin has a run in with REAL Alaskan’s

August 9, 2010

Check out the story behind the video at Shannyn Moore’s site.

David Corn – Palin Admits Unfit to Run

July 26, 2010

David Corn for Politics Daily

Sarah Palin can’t expect anyone to take her seriously as a presidential candidate — not after what she said this week.

In recent days, the former Alaska governor and Tea Party fave has been on a tear against Journolist, a list-serv for nearly 500 journalists, policy wonks and academics, most of whom are self-identified liberals working for self-identified liberal outfits. The participants on this off-the-record e-mail chain promoted their work, debated politics and policy (occasionally quite sharply), and traded and tested ideas for articles and columns. Last month, The Daily Caller, a conservative website, began running articles based on Journolist archives it somehow obtained. Some conservatives immediately denounced Journolist as a secret cabal that established a party line for the dreaded liberal media.

Read the rest at Politics Daily.

Letter to the (half) Gov. Palin – From a ‘Peaceful NY’er to a Mama Grizzly

July 19, 2010

Dear Fmr. Gov. Palin,9/11/2006 Protest and Memorial

Hi, my name is Zach Roberts. Like you, I work in TV. I’m usually the one behind the screen though with the camera. Y’know, like Michael Moore?

I came to Alaska to make a film about you. I’ve tried to stay on the down low, but after your last tweet I felt as though I needed to “repudiate” you. (It’s catchy, very Shakespearean… “Now is the winter of our ‘refudiation’ …Made glorious summer by this son of Palin)

Before I get to the tweet in question, I wanted to thank you for flipping the district that I grew up in. For decades NY 23 was a republican stronghold – you chose a candidate so rogue that the entire district voted for the Democrat. That was awesome, you ‘betcha. Just last week you endorsed a mama grizzly for NY 25, which is the district that I first voted in, she’s not doing well in the polls. We just got our first Democrat in a long time, Dan Maffei, the people in Syracuse like him a lot. Since then I moved to work for a journalist in New York City, every fire station near where I lived has a plaque on the front of the building with the names of the people lost on September 11th, 2001. (NY’ers love their firefighters and first responders – even Rudy Ramadan, a Muslim-American first responder. Rudy set up triage centers and almost died in the attacks.)

It seems like you’re following me…are you following me on twitter? Should I take this personal? I hope you’re not taking me being here personal, I’m just a guy looking for a good story, you went to school for journalism, you should understand that.

I’ve been here for about a month, following your amazing story by talking to the interesting people at the Mudflats that wrote about you during those short two years that you were Governor. (You do know that a state governor is supposed to serve 4 right? Two year terms are how long congressmen serve… just wanted to make sure you know that) I’ve heard that Gov. Parnell is doing quite good though continuing your rogue-tastic legacy. He’s even got campaign yard signs that are just like yours. (I think he might have a crush, maybe he’ll follow in your foot steps and only serve two years).

I’m new to your state, I like it so much that I just might stay. I met a friend of your’s, Hollis French, he’s cool. I might vote for him if I stay here.

So let me just take off my directors hat (don’t worry, it’s a baseball cap, not one of those pretentious French beret things) and get to the point. I’ll talk to you as a and talk to you as a peaceful New Yorker to a peaceful mama grizzly.

Your tweets:

Ground Zero Mosque supporters: doesn’t it stab you in the heart, as it does ours throughout the heartland? Peaceful Muslims, pls refudiate

“Peaceful New Yorkers, pls refute the Ground Zero mosque plan if you believe catastrophic pain caused @ Twin Towers site is too raw, too real,”

“Peace-seeking Muslims, pls understand, Ground Zero mosque is UNNECESSARY provocation; it stabs hearts. Pls reject it in interest of healing.”

I gotta say, Gov. I’m not from NYC originally but this really gets my hackles up.

You and your friends in the Tea Party have taken on this planned religious center (it’s NOT a mosque) that is near the World Trade Center site as an obsession. Did you know that there’s already a mosque 2 blocks away? It’s been there for years. ( I’ve seen it, (have you?) my friend, a party planner used to do burlesque shows at the bar next door. Never had any problems.

Also I want to express one more time to you and all the people who come to disaster tour “ground zero”, we call it the World Trade Center site. Calling the WTC site ground zero would be like calling Bligh reef, ground zero of the spill. We choose to remember it’s greatness, and be respectful to the people that gave their lives for others. Many of them, like Rudy were Muslim.( Please make up a new work for forgiveness and respect. Something that you have none of.

Why don’t you move to New York, I’ve got a great broker you can talk to. Live there for a bit and find out how peaceful NY’ers are to you. I ‘betcha they’ll ‘refudiate’ you all the way back to Wasilla.

Finest kind,
Zach Roberts, born and raised in NY State.

If you’re like me and annoyed from Sarah’s twits please respond with action. The Fire Fighter Cancer Foundation is trying to raise $250,000 for 500 air purification systems. First responders are still feeling the pain of helping – please go to