Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Andree McLeod Finally Opens Up And Explains Why She Is So Obsessed With Sarah Palin's Ethics; It Dates Back To A Falafel Fight

For the first time, chronic Palin critic Andree McLeod has opened up and explained in greater detail why she has become so obsessed with the ethics of Governor Sarah Palin. But while I still don't consider her obsession justified, her explanation does mitigate much of the personal hostility I had developed against her.

She bares her soul (and thankfully, nothing more) in an Anchorage Daily News article entitled "Palin critics defend their actions" published late on July 6th, 2009. Combined with research from some other sources, it appears we have a case of a person who became radicalized by what she perceived as unequal treatment by government, and so she became excessively sensitive to the appearance of government malfeasance.

Some background published by Blogian is useful. Although Andree McLeod came from Lebanon, she is actually Armenian by origin. McLeod and her family emigrated from Beirut to the United States in 1963, and moved from Long Island to Alaska thirty years ago. She was apolitical until 1995, when she decided to earn money for grad school by operating a falafel cart in Anchorage. However, the city disapproved her plans, declaring fried chickpeas “potentially hazardous”, even though they allowed competing outdoor hot dog vendors to operate. She appealed the decision unsuccessfully, which led to an unsuccessful mayoral campaign in 1997. Afterwards, she ran twice for the House District 24 seat unsuccessfully as a Non-Partisan in 2002 and as a Republican in 2004, with an unsuccessful Anchorage school board run sandwiched within. [Ed. Note: I cannot recall why the city "ixnayed" McLeod's falafel cart, but other cities making such a distinction do so because they only allow outdoor food vendors to keep already-cooked food hot, and do not allow actual cooking of food. Hot dogs can be prepared in advance and kept hot - falafel cannot be prepared the same way.]

Blogian also provides some insight as to how the political relationship between Andree McLeod and Sarah Palin evolved. McLeod first met Palin after her failed House bid in 2002. They became friends, and after Palin was appointed to the Alaska Oil & Gas Conservation Commission (AOGCC), she frequently complained to McLeod about Randy Ruedrich’s penchant for doing party work from his office. McLeod got tired of Sarah’s ceaseless complaints and told her to do something about it already.

However, McLeod told ADN that her failure to get a patronage job with the Palin Administration had nothing to do with either the souring of the relationship, or the ethics complaints subsequently filed. But McLeod apparently began to get tips about possible questionable actions. For instance, she heard from fellow Republicans that members of Palin's administration continued to pressure party members to oust Ruedrich, and they were communicating using state e-mail, telephones and other resources. So she filed an information request for all the e-mails from two Palin administration officials "to see whether there were partisan political activities being conducted using state time and resources." When she began to get records back in 2008, she didn't discover incriminating evidence about political activity, but found something else that led her to dig more.

"It's like going fishing and getting bycatch. I was looking for salmon, I found a 400-pound halibut", explained McLeod. That was the discovery that members of the Palin administration were conducting state business using private Yahoo accounts, not state e-mail accounts. McLeod was concerned that by using Yahoo, e-mail messages about public policy would be beyond the reach of a public-records request, since they would not exist on state computers.

McLeod is now suing the state to force the administration to abandon the use of outside e-mail accounts. The case is pending, as is a second, in which she's suing to get full disclosure of e-mails about state business that were sent or received by Palin's husband, Todd.

But why all the freaking ethics complaints? "I think that the only mechanisms available to citizens to discover how their government is running is through the [Alaska] public records act," McLeod said last weekend in between interviews from different national media outlets. "And the only mechanisms available to citizens to address their government for any wrongdoings is the Alaska ethics act. And I exercise my rights under both of those acts to figure out what Sarah Palin and her administration was up to and to redress the wrongdoings of Sarah Palin and her administration's conduct."

O.K., so now I understand how Andree McLeod got radicalized and why she takes this more seriously than most. But to request boxes and boxes of public records and spend spare time poring through them? I could understand it if she was a professional getting paid to do this research, but to do it as a hobby? That's inexplicable.

What ADN did not do is to ask her about her reaction to the fact that three of her four ethics complaints have been dismissed. In various comments posted to related ADN stories, McLeod has frequently dismissed this as irrelevant, claiming that the political integrity of the Personnel Board is compromised by the fact that the Governor appoints its members, although by charter, it is an independent body. She's also dismissed the integrity of the Department of Law. By these remarks, she makes it look like she's more expert on ethics than a big chunk of the state government. That conveys the appearance of megalomania on her part, and is the primary reason why so many "Palinbots" as well as others are so pissed at her.

But now, instead of being angry with her, I'm actually more saddened that Andree McLeod has allowed this obsession to take over her life. It will not bring any meaningful change to the way state goverment operates, and in fact to reach her standards, state goverment would virtually have to put itself in a straitjacket. I want public officials to have sufficient wiggle room to do their jobs effectively, and not be handcuffed by a draconian ethics code. Andree McLeod is in danger of generating a backlash against the concept of ethics itself.

And quite frankly, I don't give a shit what type of coat the Governor wears, because it has no impact upon the size of my Permanent Fund Dividend.


  1. I live in Detroit. This McLeod woman does seem to be obsessed and vindictive. Be glad you have her, though, because without people like her, you we have Detroit! Here graft and corruption in public servants is taken for granted and even expected. Look at our ex-mayor and a certain ex-councilwoman. Actually proud of their crookedness. Would you want that? If you don't want McLeod, send her here!

  2. Scooterbarf - I am well aware of the situation in Detroit. First "King Kwame", now Monica Conyers. I read the DetroitIsCrap blog on a regularly basis, where those problems and more are documented.

    Hope your new mayor Dave Bing can make some progress in turning things around there.

  3. Actually the "DetroitIsCrap" site is lousy--vindictive suburbanites slobbering about Detroit's evilness and exaggerating it and not really knowing anything about life in the City. Politically Detroit is crap because of massive numbers of ignorant voters, but if I were you I'd take most of the "information" presented by DetroitIsCrap with a grain of salt.

  4. I just realized after looking at her picture that Andree McLeod is a Palin wanna be who maybe looked like palin before she became bitter and fat ...but continuously eats up Alaskan tax payer money filing ethics complaints...SHAME ON YOU...GET A LIFE and work on YOUR OWN SELF IMPROVEMENT....

  5. i worked with andree - she was a classic case of someone who interviews well, but doesn't have a clue of how to accomplish even the most simple tasks.

  6. I see nothing but a bitter old woman who is obviously jealous and determined to ruin the life of others. Go back to Lebanon!

  7. she is wasteing the tax payers money because she can and don't give a crap...... she has a life spending your money

  8. I agree, she is a Palin "wanna-be" The only reaseon she was offended by the state worker's dress (wearing low cut blouses)is she is jealous, ashamed, or flat breasted!
    I agree, go back to Lebanon!

  9. she is wasteing the tax payers money because she can and don't give a crap...... she has a life spending your money

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  10. All this shows is that something needs to be changed in government. When citizens bring ethics complaints to light, there needs to be some checks and balances. The way to balance all these suits would be to make it so that if the ethics complaint is found to be without merit, the person bringing the complaint should have to pay all attorney fees for the opposing party. If they had to spend their own money instead of the taxpayers, they would be a little more careful of the complaints they file. People like Ms. McLeod, who are on a witch hunt, might go pull the wings off a fly and torture it, instead of wasting our money.

  11. I agree 150% that McLeod is an ugly, bitter fat woman who has no business complaining about Sarah Palin. She should really spend her energy on self-improvement tapes and books. I believe Sarah is a christian woman who beholds the strongest of faith, and this muslin shi-ite be-otch will not ever dent Sarah's good will as long as she has her faith. McLeod you need to get a life and move on and quit being a freaking HEMORROID!

  12. I've often wondered what this McLeod women looked like....YIKES!

    I'm in agreement with the others in suggesting she get a life. Enough is enough....LET IT GO

    Move back to Lebanon and open a Falafel stand!

    I hope to meet her on the street and use my freedom of speech to give her an earful.

  13. Get over it Andree, just because no one wants to look at your cleavage, doesn't mean attractive women shouldn't dress fashionably!!
    Maybe if you had a life you wouldn’t keep trying to ruin everyone else’s!!!
    What a bitch!!

  14. It's time McLeod was prosecuted for improper use of the court system and repeated filing of frivolous law suits. She's using the court as a weapon for her personal vendetta against a former friend for achieving success when she herself failed at everything she tried.

  15. This Femi-nazi McLeod needs to be $%!@#-slapped into next week. Hell hath no fury like McLeod scorned. It's obvious she's "out for blood" against Palin and Alaska in general. No falafel, no Congress seat(twice), no school board, no, no, no....

  16. Has anyone considered she's a terrorist looking for a way in to get info on public figures?

  17. i read an opinion a while back from some government lawyer that Sarah Palin would not be able to have her legal expenses in defending against these frivolous charges paid by a legal defense fund while she was governor since that would give her the opportunity to reward those who organized that fund by showing favoritism to them.
    Thus she would be on the hook for on the order of a million dollars to pay for defending against these charges if she remainded governor. Apparently Alaska doesn't pay for defense against ethics charges.
    I believe that this finding was what caused her to resign that position, which would allow her to be made whole by raising defense money from her supporters.
    (of course nobody ever objected to the Clintons or other democrats raising funds from supporters for legal defense)
    Of course she had already accomplished what she had set out to do, and her democrat supporters who had helped her do that abandoned her as punishment for her run for vice president, so she saw no great loss to the state by her resignation.

  18. Here's an e-mail I sent Mcleod and her response. She's the one that is hate filled. All I did was ask a question.
    When are you going to pay Sarah Palin's attorney fees? Just wondering since you've lost every ethics case brought against her? Alaska needs to change their laws regarding people who bring up frivolous complaints and have those
    that are on the losing end of the stick pay for all court costs and attorney fees.
    Her response:
    Please do not contact me again in any manner again. I will be forwarding your email to the authorities along with the other hate-filled and threatening emails
    I've received.

  19. A mother's graceful vengeance is coming and she is pissed! Sarah Palin, the common folks 21st century American Knight! http://bit.ly/rng6v

  20. Wow, I'll bet she does get some zingers!

  21. I agree that she is a bitter piece of shit. Every city or other political subdivision has that one asshole who wants to be the center of attention, who use the framework of government to destroy the very reason it exists. People complain about the inefficiencies of government, but yet someone like this can file complaint after complaint. There should be a loser pays system whereby the second time you lose a complaint, you have to pay all the costs incurred by the state to defend the complaint...

  22. Gawd, I'm guessing she has been off her meds for awhile.

  23. Perhaps if society held Ms. McLeod to the same standard as we hold Ms. Palin, and we passed common sense legislation to hold plaintiff's accountable by requiring them to pay all court costs if they lose or their case, this type self-centered, costly and self-distructive behavior would be substantally reduced.

  24. Hey what was that about ol Sarah again? Sounds like 2016 will not be a good year for her! After all this time and all those crimes! Now we got the 11.5 document leak! Gee Sarah can't burn it down or water log it can ya bitch?