Monday, October 20, 2008

Sarah Palin: Governor of the SOCIALIST State of Alaska

Last year Sarah Palin and her family got a check for over $1500 per person from the state of Alaska. What did they do to earn that money? Nothing. They got it simply for being Alaskans. It's their share of the Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend which assures that all Alaskans get a cut of oil company profits.

That's at least part of what made Sarah Palin such a popular governor, the way she coerced the oil companies into spreading their wealth .It's socialism on a scale unknown in any other part of the United States.

Which means she was for it before she was against it.

Here's the point: Sarah Palin who is on the circuit decrying Obama's socialist agenda has been presiding over the biggest and most blatant socialist hand-out in American history. McCain applauds her for "taking on the oil companies," but, in fact, what she did was tantamount to extortion - holding them hostage for increased oil revenues that she could distribute to her fellow Alaskans as welfare whether they needed it or not.

The only socialist agenda in America right now is Sarah Palin's.

I believe that's called hypocrisy.



Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend

The Alaska Permanent Fund Dividend program was created by state legislation in 1980 to share the wealth of the Alaska Permanent Fund with the people of Alaska. The original program was to give each adult Alaska resident $50 for each year of residency, but this was challenged in court by Ron Zobel and payments were put on hold. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled the program unconstitutional, and the legislature authorized equal dividend payments to all people who had lived in Alaska at least six months. In 1989, the Legislature changed the residency requirement to 24 months, but that was challenged in court and dropped to one calendar year, which is still in effect.

The first dividend payment was $1,000 per person. The next year, the payment dropped to $386.15 and fell to an all-time low of $331.39 in 1984. It climbed the next year to $404.00 and enjoyed fairly steady growth to peak of $1963.86 per person in 2000. Low oil prices and a stock market recession caused the dividend to drop to $919.84 in 2004. The 2005 amounts will be announced in October. (2008: $3,200/person)

The dividend payments are based on a five-year average of the Permanent Fund's earnings, which helps to stabilize the dividends as the stock market and oil market changes from year to year.

The Alaska Permanent Fund Corporation has pushed in recent years for a change in the fund's management style to a Percent of Market Value approach, which is used by many other trust fund management agencies. Changing the fund's management approach requires a state constitutional amendment. This will also affect how dividends are calculated and is a subject of controversy in Alaskan politics. (See the article on the Alaska Permanent Fund.)

See Also:


From the Jackson Free Press:

Palin's Alaska: Funded by Oil Profits Tax

If Sarah Palin gets past this press cycle and remains the Vice Presidential nominee on the GOP ticket, there might be one interesting item from her brief tenure as governor of Alaska that would be worthy of discussion on the national stage -- her state's windfall profit sharing from oil leases. It turns out that every person who has lived in Alaska for over a year gets a $3,200 payout from the government thanks to taxes on oil companies; a family as large as Palin's would receive over $22,000 a year.

Sure, you'd be hard pressed to live off that. (Some might try.) But who wouldn't mind that scratch just because you live in an oil-rich state?

No wonder she is popular with voters in a state whose residents pay no income or sales taxes but are blessed with state coffers rolling in cash at a time when all other states are suffering. Indeed, when the oil companies pay more taxes to the state of Alaska, they get to write that off against their federal tax obligation, leaving the rest of us to make up the shortfall.

But wouldn't it be -- I don't know -- communism to take money from the oil companies and give it to citizens? Not according to Governor Palin. When John McCain says that she "took on" the oil companies as governor, what he means is just that -- she raised taxes on oil companies.


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