The Rogue: Palin was an image-obsessed power monger and poor parent

Sex, drugs, and unethical politics: New Palin book sparks controversy


“Some things are just going to come to light that the Palin’s just won’t be able to shake, and I have faith in that. It has already started, but these books will add to it,” Whitstine said.

By the CNN Wire Staff



    • “The Rogue” by Joe McGinniss comes out next Tuesday
    • Joe McGinniss’ book alleges that Palin once used cocaine
    • The book also claims Palin was an image-obsessed governor and poor parent
    • Sarah Palin’s husband says the book is full of “disgusting” lies


(CNN) — A new one-volume guide to virtually every rumor, controversy, assertion and accusation about Sarah Palin — scurrilous or otherwise — is about to hit the stands, and it’s already generating a storm of controversy.

“The Rogue: Searching for The Real Sarah Palin” by Joe McGinniss is a merciless review of Palin’s personal life and meteoric rise from the mayor of a small Alaskan town to the center of America’s political universe.

CNN obtained a copy of the book — which relies heavily on unnamed sources — earlier this week.

Palin critics will find some of their worst assumptions about the former governor reinforced by McGinniss; Palin defenders will be outraged. The book portrays Palin as an image-obsessed governor who was ill-prepared for the burdens of Wasilla’s town hall — much less for the Republican presidential ticket.

If that’s not enough for you, how about charges of racism, adultery, and cocaine abuse? Her parenting skills also leave something to be desired, if McGinniss is to be believed.

Needless to say, those closest to the former governor are not amused. The Palin family has had a rocky relationship with McGinniss since he moved in next door to their home in Wasilla last summer to research the book.

Todd Palin should shut up or sue somebody! Todd, your whole life is "Full of Disgusting Lies"

Palin’s husband, Todd, accused McGinniss this week of “relentlessly stalking my family to the point of moving in right next door to us to harass us and spy on us to satisfy his creepy obsession with my wife.”

“His book is full of disgusting lies, innuendo, and smears,” Todd Palin asserted.

The former governor told Fox News that McGinniss “needs to get a life.”

The Palin circle is not alone in its criticism of McGinniss. New York Times reviewer Janet Maslin called most of the book “dated, petty and easily available to anyone with Internet access.” Maslin accused McGinniss of using his time living near the Palins “to chase caustic, unsubstantiated gossip,” often attributed to unnamed sources such as “a friend” or “one resident.”

In an interview broadcast Thursday on NBC’s “Today” show, McGinniss said: “I think I was as fair as I could possibly have been given the fact that (Palin) told all the people who were closest to her not to talk to me.”

Palin “overreacts,” McGinniss said. “She has no modulation in her responses to stress.”

McGinniss’ other notable books include “The Selling of the President” in 1969 — a critical review of Richard Nixon’s first successful presidential campaign — and “Fatal Vision” in 1983 about Dr. Jeffrey MacDonald, a military physician who was convicted of murdering his wife and children.

He also wrote a book about Alaska — “Going to Extremes” in 1980.

McGinniss’ website calls his latest work “an extraordinary double narrative that alternately traces Palin’s curious rise to political prominence and worldwide celebrity status and then recounts the author’s day-to-day experiences as he uncovers the messy reality beneath the glossy Palin myth.”

Among other things, the book cites an unnamed friend who claims Sarah Palin once snorted cocaine off an overturned 55-gallon oil drum while on a snowmobiling trip. As for Todd Palin, he “did coke with us all,” former friend John Bitney says in the book. “He was on the end of the straw plenty.”

“I’m not saying Todd and Sarah Palin today abuse cocaine or even use it, but there is no question they both did at one point in their lives,” McGinniss told NBC.


28 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Syrin
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 16:43:22

    You know what? It’s about character.. GOOD values and character.. Sarah Palin does not possess it! Sarah Palin needs to be asked some real hard questions and than BE DONE WITH HER!

    “An utter fraud. An absolute and utter fraud,” McGinniss calls Palin in an interview about the book with NBC.

    “At best, she’s a hypocrite,” McGinniss tells NBC’s Savannah Guthrie. “At worst, she’s a vindictive hypocrite.”

    ‘utter fraud’, ‘vindictive hypocrite’ well that is spot on!

    It’s been suggested that these very words sound like my descriptions…

    [Chicago Tribune, 9/1/08] Sarah Palin is a utter fraud, and the fact that McCain is trying to make Palin the VP of our country is probably the worst mistake of [McCain’s] entire life,’ Whitstine said.”


    • AFM
      Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:26:11

      Funny thing is we really didn’t need McGinnis’ book to tell us that. We all knew she was on the crazy train long long ago. He is just verifing what we all already knew.


      • Syrin
        Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:43:32

        True, but, Joe McGinniss adds his credibility to it by being an investigative journalist! I hope he’s everywhere, telling everyone what I know to be the truth about Sarah. It’s not the individual things that I care about it’s the whole picture that this paints.

      • Julian
        Sep 17, 2011 @ 16:20:17

        I can’t help but wonder if Palin isn’t a product of geography. I simply can’t believe that if she had started behaving like this in a big city she wouldn’t have been driven into the ground like a tent peg. “Big fish little pond.” Mean girls who try this on out in the big smoke really get hammered by their peers who just will not put up with such brattish behavior; I don’t think she would have had a hope of building such momentum.

  2. anAlaskanAlsoII
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 16:45:12

    Unnamed sources have a lot more credibility with me than any ghost-written narrative or anything falling from Sarah or Todd Palin’s mouths in the last 20 years.

    Did the publishers vet / fact-check Going Rogue? No. The LSM did but conservatives brushed it off. Limbaugh called it the most important “policy” book in the history of the country. How do you like them moose nuggets?

    They lie like they breath.


    • Syrin
      Sep 16, 2011 @ 16:58:55

      I totally agree with this seemingly bias against the established and renouned author to have named sources, but, Sarah Palin can enjoy perpetuating a false life narrative using tales and fables and no one needs to check. I’ve never read a reveiw where they even were interested to mention the truthfulness or NOT in the content.. They took innuendo and relied on unnamed sources.(all taken as truth!?!?) as you mentioned.., let alone actually checking her sources, her stories. I don’t get it! Now, Todd has NYT review as ammunition to spew over and over…


  3. anony
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:10:55

    The Enquirer did fact check Brad Hansen’s latest denial

    A scandal rag does more investigating than the MSM does???


  4. Just_a_Mote
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:18:55

    “An utter fraud. An absolute and utter fraud.”

    Truer words were never spoken.


  5. AFM
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:29:57

    I can hardly wait to see what Shailey Tripp has to say if she writes a book. One thing all these books so far have in common. Palin doesn’t come off well at all. You know everyone can’t be wrong. These writer didn’t coordinate with each other.


  6. Syrin
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:31:17

    Here.. This is the reviews that Palin the absolute and utter fraud gets>>>>
    Portrait emerges of Sarah Palin as a wise-cracking, vegan-loving victim of John McCain’s ruthless campaign team.,people,news,sarah-palin-the-best-of-the-going-rogue-excerpts-leaks-oprah-winfrey


  7. dz
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:42:22

    It’s all fun and games for Palin when she chooses to go on her $100K a pop speaking tour unfairly and untruthfully criticizing and denigrating the President but when others want to share their opinions of and experiences with her, it’s suddenly bad form??? Puh-leeze. The public laps up her drivel when the MSM doesn’t do their fact-checking. We expect it from Faux News but the networks and CNN have become just as guilty. The more she baits him with her tawdry opinions, the more he ignores her and that is very likely what drives her jealous rants. Hearing her spout that she is more qualified to be President than Barack Obama should be grounds to have her committed for a mental health evaluation. A juris doctorate degree plus a Masters beats a (thus far undocumented) journalism undergrad degree by anyone’s standards Mrs P.


  8. beth
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 17:47:48

    Seems like Todd had a hand in the statement to the Enquire. These Palins will stop at nothing.Bonnie and Clyde can’t compare to these 2, except they got caught and the Palins continue right in the front of all america. I’ve never seen a couple as corrupt as these two.She doesn’t need to go away and live with her millions. The Palins need to be locked up……BUT WHEN?


  9. nswfm
    Sep 16, 2011 @ 22:29:50

    It was because of your post on a wizbang blog about the dipshit’s name being tossed around for VP, where you said you knew where she sent her kids to keep them out of her way and some other tidbits that I became interested in the fraud known as Grifter Granny.

    Keep blogging, keep blogging right now!


  10. KiheiKat
    Sep 17, 2011 @ 04:54:15

    I agree whole heartedly with your story & the commenters Syrin! Thanks! I would make one small change & that would be in the title: “The Rogue: Palin IS (instead of was) an image-obsessed power monger and poor parent.”


  11. climber357
    Sep 17, 2011 @ 08:36:57

    “I think I was as fair as I could possibly have been given the fact that (Palin) told all the people who were closest to her not to talk to me.”

    I don´t believe Joe missed out on much. They would have all said the same thing and nothing more: ¨Sarah is waaaay prettier than Michelle!¨


  12. Syrin
    Sep 17, 2011 @ 09:45:56

    Well.. I read Gryphen’s post. Brad didn’t actually make a statement, it appears that Palin’s created it! They know how to generate many false documents and emails. Remember all those false people and concerns that were used in letters to the editor? I’m not sure why Brad would say anything, especially to Natl Enquirer..


    • climber357
      Sep 17, 2011 @ 10:46:09

      The Palins generate false statements of support from other people because no one voluntarily comes to their defense. Many are unwittingly woven into their lies. The Palins have no choice but to cannibalize the reputations of respected and admired citizens (e.g. CBJ).

      They cannot stand on their own two feet and would rather throw their children to the wolves than face the consequences of their own behavior.


  13. Millie
    Sep 17, 2011 @ 11:53:40

    Alaskans have been aware of the antics of Sarah Palin for a good number of years now and much of what Joe McGinniss has put in print IS accurate. It is about time folks in the rest of the United States are made aware of this woman.

    John McCain did not vet her properly as well as the media – to include Alaska news outlets.

    She has been proven to be a liar, to have stolen money from Alaska during her quitter term as governor (she had to repay it) and the Alaska State Legilsature found her unethical even though she denied it while on the campaign trail w/McCain.

    Read Geoffrey Dunn’s book entitled “The Lies of Sarah Palin” and Frank Bailey’s book (worked for her administration) “Blind Allegiance”. Much is documented in both these books.

    She truly is a mean, vindictive woman! Joe McGinniss is a well known investigative author who writes very, very well. This will be another one of his best sellers and I sincerely hope Amercian citizens pay attention. The woman is a fraud and should never hold any elective office.


  14. Dis Gusted
    Sep 17, 2011 @ 14:36:32

    Brad never released a statement – it’s fraudulent.

    Todd also seemed confused about his alleged statement, claiming he was out moose hunting and didn’t know anything.


  15. Martha
    Sep 17, 2011 @ 15:59:12

    CNN has morphed into FOX, so I take whatever they say with a grain of salt. The last teapotty debate they put on looked like a joke, I thought I was watching Colbert on steroids, it was actually embarrassing.

    We all know there is no teapotty, only republicans and far right republicans and far, far right Dominionist religious wing-nut republicans.

    The teapotty is the sole creation of the Koch brothers and their political institutions.

    Not even FOX gives the teapotty enough credence to host a political debate for them, so CNN has sunk as low as they can go, in desperation for ratings.

    Here is a review from the Toronto Star, (not to be confused with the American Star which is a counterpart to the National Inquirer), that I wholeheartedly agree with, given what I have read and seen of TheQuitterFromWassilla…what say you Wassillians, what say you who know her best?;

    WASHINGTON—Weighing in at 318 pages, The Rogue isn’t merely an act of character assassination — it is one long, hard, steel spike through the political heart of Sarah Palin.

    Whatever remote chance remained that the conservative firebrand might one day end up in the White House is poised to unravel Tuesday, when the controversial Joe McGinniss book hits stores.

    Put aside the jaw-dropping allegations of cocaine and adultery. Forget about the claim Palin and former NBA player Glen Rice had a one-night tryst back in 1987, when she was a single young reporter and he was a university basketball player. And never mind the insider accounts of the almost Biblical vengeance Sarah and Todd Palin visited upon enemies, real or perceived, during the march from Wasilla, Alaska, to where they reside today, at the astronomically high-paying intersection of Washington and Hollywood.

    The Sarah Palin portrayed in The Rogue is nothing short of a born-again hypocrite — and one so self-obsessed, yet so utterly unaware of herself, as to not even know it.

    The best-kept secret in Palin’s closet, according to McGinniss, is not the sordid storyline of sex and drugs and rock ’n’ roll, but the extent to which Palin believes herself chosen by God to be the next president of the United States.

    The “evangelical Kool-Aid” of extreme religiosity percolates throughout The Rogue, with Palin confidantes — some named, some not — detailing the out-there end-times theology they scrambled to keep a lid on, lest it go public.

    For instance: God created Earth 6,000 years ago and populated it with mankind and dinosaurs. “Mankind had survived, dinosaurs had not. End of story,” writes McGinnis.

    Except the rest of the story is that these are the end-times, with The Rapture and the return of Jesus imminent. Palin is quoted by fellow Christian Phil Munger as certain all this will transpire in her lifetime. “Maybe you can’t see that but I can, and it guides me every day,” she says.

    Yet within the fractious Palin household, another portrait emerges.

    “There was no religion,” an insider reveals. “There was nothing about God. There was no Christ. Nobody prayed. No Bibles. No crosses. None of that was ever there. Never.”

    Instead, this Palin home is a portrait in dysfunction, where days began with screaming demands for divorce amid children neglected by parents who themselves behaved like emotionally stunted teenagers.

    A home from whence a miserable Todd Palin, in the early years at least, escaped regularly for extramarital trysts; and where Sarah is said to have returned the favour, at least once, to get her wayward hubby back in line.

    A home from whence the Palin’s eldest son was allegedly shipped off to Iraq to rid the family of potential public-relations powder keg of an OxyContin-chomping vandal prone to violence.

    A number of Alaskans share on-the-record close encounters with Planet Palin. But much of the most damning detail is presented under the cloak of anonymity that McGinniss claims to have provided reluctantly. The continuing fear of Palin retribution, the author argues, is alive and well in Wassilla.

    One example: The author was already famously at rhetorical war with the Palins, having audaciously rented the house next to theirs in order to write the book. One day, McGinniss called in a local handyman, who arrived with cardboard duct-taped over his truck’s licence plates. “I don’t need any bulls–t from those paranoid f–kers next door,” the handyman explained.

    McGinniss claims to have taken not a single photograph or recording of his neighbours during his time in Wassilla. But when Palin first learned the identity of her neighbour, a quick Facebook update alerted her online loyalists and suddenly, the 67-year-old author, his wife, his agent and his publisher were besieged with death threats, sparking national headlines

    McGinniss, whose previous writings on Alaska were critically acclaimed, describes how some locals came to his rescue. The “ Wassilla Welcome Wagon” included one group who brought him a flag and his choice of six handguns. Another stranger arrived with keys and a map to his house, telling McGinniss he was welcome anyone. “Hell, I’ve even got an AK-47 you might like.”

    The rented house was unfurnished and after buying two armchairs, McGinniss struggled to find someone willing to deliver, lest the Palins find out. Finally, Dewey Taylor, a retired schoolteacher, dropped off the furniture. The next night his truck had its driver’s-side window blown out as Taylor slept.

    McGinnis describes the Palin practice of vanquishing enemies as a “potentially dangerous character flaw.”

    “She has no sense of proportion, no ability to modulate her response. She’s over-the-top in all directions: rah-rah cheerleading for those she supports, spewing vitriolic condemnation of anyone who challenges her.

    “If this is how she reactions, as a private citizen, to an unwelcome neighbour next door, what would she do as president if the Iranian government suddenly irked her?”

    But McGinniss attributes much of that mindset as a consequence of life under father Chuck Heath, unearthing a story of how her father once whipped up an “ugly, violent mob” in Wassilla to protest the firing of a school principal — his close friend — who was fired for ignoring allegations that another teacher had molested as many as 17 girls in his Grade 3 class.

    Said Pat O’Hara, a former school board member caught in the fracas: “Sarah learned from her father; if someone disagrees with you or does something you don’t like, annihilate first, ask questions later.”

    McGinniss portrays Todd Palin’s transformation from a hard-drinking, womanizing, cocaine-binging good ol’ boy to an emasculated but vindictive presence today. “Clearly, being reduced to the role of chihuahua carried around in a rich lady’s purse is proving stressful for Todd.”

    And he awakens doubts about the real Sarah Palin, gathering anecdotes that suggest she is neither a fisher nor much of a hockey mom, nor even the least bit interested in actual governance, having ruled Alaska partway through a single term with a mostly blank appointment book as she leafed through the pages of People.

    The most scathing indictment, however, McGinniss saves for what Palin loves to call the “lamestream” media: Rather than taking her down, the media circus continually catches and resets Palin to a place of otherwise inexplicable prominence.

    “Sarah Palin practises politics as lap dance, and we’re the suckers who pay the price,” he concludes.

    “Members of our jaded national press corps eagerly stuff hundred-dollar bills in her G-string, even as they wink at one another to show that they don’t take her seriously.”–book-sets-out-to-find-palin-and-destroy-her?bn=1#article


  16. jadez
    Sep 17, 2011 @ 16:38:52

    the real story about palin is exactly what the comment above states…and that is , why has the media enabled this woman for so long?

    no one can answer that question..and the answer is NOT that she makes them money.

    and the real danger in not exposing palin is not exposing the people that support her.
    people who are living with the hope that the world ends in their (childs) lifetime.
    people willing to issue death threats and incite violence ,hate etc etc.

    i believe she is protected because her message is a right wing corporate military war message.
    forget the religion because she has no beliefs,,only ambition.

    only in the sparsely populated state of alaska could she have risen to the governors chair because the majority of its people clearly fit the description of what it takes to be a palin supporter.

    remember had it not been for the unstable mccain she would have finished her term a disgraced politician and hardly ever heard from again.

    she is a symptom and a reminder of what this country has been turned into….a mass of uneducated voters , a propagandist media and fraudulent politicians who represent nothing but the rich parading as populists.

    that is why she is protected and that is why she needs to be exposed.


  17. Syrin
    Sep 19, 2011 @ 09:49:37

    This is getting totally ridiculous how Palin and her sycophants are credible but EVERYONE else is NOT? I told you all, it was the media who has prperpetuated her for reasons beyond me. Now to keep her there- they have to coddle her and defend her against the ‘haters’ who bring the ugly truth out in the open. That is what a JEZEBEL requires.. Never being confronted and others to fight their battles!

    Read ”Lamestream media’ defends Palin’ on Yahoo! News. They kicked her around, victimized her, tried to destroy her. But all of a sudden….


  18. akrnc
    Sep 19, 2011 @ 11:09:25


    I’ve read reviews of a new e-book on Palin, already found one blatant mistake where the author says Palin was examined by a physician in Seattle between flights during the “Wild Ride”. This is the first time this has ever come up and it appears he wants to revise history.

    He also says in the book that Palin took Alaska from the brink of bankruptcy to a surplus of $12 billion. Can you lead me in the right direction to rebut this nonsense? Thank you!

    Here’s a link to the book if you’re interested.


    • Syrin
      Sep 19, 2011 @ 13:30:28

      Its total BS and whackadoodle’s record is out there for all to see. The wild ride has been out there also. Palin at several speeches these last 3 years has tried to change it up. But, apparently no one cares to note the inconsistencies in Palin’s story or the reality that for obvious reason Sarah is not useful or valuable


  19. Trackback: Popdose at Kirkus Reviews: "The Rogue: Searching for the Real Sarah Palin" | Popdose
  20. Gary Collins
    Nov 03, 2011 @ 16:10:12

    I must be old school, if you can’t say something nice about someone, don’t say anything at all!


  21. robin
    Jan 19, 2012 @ 00:06:29

    Gary Collins, tell that to Sarah Palin please.


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