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Toby Barlow Headshot

Alaska, Land of Lies

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I know how she feels. Back in 1989, I lied in Alaska too. A lot.

I got up to Juneau broke and in dire need of a job. I was underage, so I added on a few years onto my resume. Then, just to make sure I was hired, I added a bit of extra experience too. As my friend Marshall had told me, "Relax, you can say anything up there, they never check with the lower 48. It's just too far away."

So, this gives me some perspective on where Sarah Palin is coming from. She knows that Alaska - like Narnia and Middle Earth - is simply too far away from our pedestrian day-to-day world to have things like details, facts, or the truth matter. When you're from a place called "the Last Frontier," pretty much anything goes.

You supported earmarks? Now, say you're against 'em!

You supported the "Bridge to Nowhere?" Now tell 'em you didn't!

See how far you can go, just pull crazy stuff out of thin air, like oh, tell 'em you sold a plane on ebay! It didn't happen, it's sort of a crazy irrational lie, but what the hell, say you did it anyway!

And if you're still wondering how any Republicans can love a mayor who increased her town's debt, raised its taxes, and increased government spending the answer is simple, just as you don't ask for the "truth" about Pixies or Ewoks, or cute, lovable Webkinz, you shouldn't expect the truth from a mythical land where people wrestle bears, shoot wolves and sucker punch salmon. She's Grizzly Adam's Eve, for Pete's sake. She could groan like Chewbacca and she'd get a pass.

When I lied in Alaska, I got screwed. Not only did I get the job but they actually made me the boss and suddenly I was in way over my head. The summer was a complete disaster. But it taught me a valuable lesson, when you're desperate you'll tell any lie you can to survive. The only question is will people wake up enough to notice? Sadly for our nation and for the world, the answer for head waiters and Vice Presidential candidates turns out to be exactly the same.