September 9, 2008

Balancing Home and Work

Yesterday,  having noticed that Alaska's First Dude apparently spends three and four consecutive days in the field working his oil job,  I wondered who was taking care of the Palin children when he was away. Of course, there are some older teenagers in the family who are baby-sitting ages, but that doesn't seem viable as a daily thing. They'll want to go to the mall, or trap beaver or something, with their friends.  And of course there are school holidays and such, including the glorious Alaskan summer (Juneau really is beautiful in June).  This leaves aside the difficulties of a 600 mile commute, or what to do in an emergency when Dad's in the field and Mom's in Juneau (which I didn't know about, either, until today--that "home" was still Wasilla).

But now, with this revelation that out of the 570 working days (by my finger counting calculation)in those 19 months, Palin was at home drawing a per diem for 312 of them, it's now clear. For more than half that time she was at home with the kids.

And governor.

Billing the state for "lodging."

Nice work if you can get it.


Reading the NYT today (9/10/08), I see that there is an adjunct office for the governor in Anchorage (which makes a lot of sense--over 40 percent of Alaskans live around there, and it's a long way from Juneau, which also cannot be reached by any land route).  So I think it's unfair to surmise she was working from home, but rather commuting to Anchorage on those days in Wissila.  That makes it more of a latch key kid situation, which is pretty common. I was one of those kids, although we didn't lock the doors.


stuart_zechman said...

Do you have any empirical (not circumstantial) evidence for your claim, Jay?

You know, phone records from her home, witnesses, etc.?

Your conjecture rests mighty heavily on the older kids not being home...

Jay Ackroyd (@jayackroyd) said...

Not following Stuart. She billed per diems from home 312 times according to news reports.

stuart_zechman said...

Sorry, Jay.

You didn't link to a report, so I assumed that was conjecture.

You are correct.

The only debatable point is whether or not the special circumstances of living in Alaska make this sort of thing reasonable, or whether it was just plain skimming from the new "reform" candidate.

Jay Ackroyd (@jayackroyd) said...

Please note the update stuart. I was unaware of the Fairbanks office.

stuart_zechman said...

Read the update; you have my respect, Jay.

Well done.