Fun with Email

     Reading the ‘Ear today was another lesson for me that nothing is considered confidential to some folks….
– Sarah Palin in an August 26, 2007 email that isn’t considered confidential
     
     Now that Sarah Palin’s emails while she was governor of Alaska and a vice-presidential candidate have been made public, the obvious question arises: why should we care?
     The answer, naturally, is that we shouldn’t.
     Unless there are pictures of body parts, there’s no reason to be excited.
     The news stories about the 24,000-plus pages of emails that journalists have been trying to get since 2008 have told us that Palin didn’t get along all that well with some other politicians and wasn’t thrilled about people saying nasty things about her and her family.
     That might apply to a lot of us.
     But the lead once again has been buried. The Los Angeles Times news story, for example, waited until the very last paragraph to tell us this: “Before releasing the emails, the state redacted more than 2,200 pages worth of materials, citing exemptions to public records laws.”
     Umm…. If there’s anything good at all in this stuff, do you think it might be in those 2,200 redacted pages?
     Strange as it may seem, I’m willing to take a benign view of this. There could be legitimate national security reasons for this.
     You know you can see Russia from up there….
     There is, however, a good use for the online Palin emails. If you’re tired of spider solitaire or Angry Birds, you now have an entertaining new desktop game. Just go to the Palin email archive and enter search terms. Come up with an interesting term, guess how many times it shows up in the emails, then see how close you came.
     The next step, of course, is seeing how those terms are used.
     The first one I searched for, of course, was “fuck.”
     It came up twice.
     The first time, the sentence read: “To a man who came up from the ranks, good fuck in your new posiuan….”
     Sic.
     Someone needed some proofreading. I think.
     The second use is a bit more entertaining. It’s not a typo and it’s from a rambling email from someone who’s mad about the shooting of wolves and bears. See if you can spot the logical problem in this declaration:
     “Sanctioning and/or participating in the barbaric, uncivilized, inhumane, cruel, evil, needless massacring of other sentient beings, especially from planes, is ‘good work’?! Fuck you! My sincere dream is that every plane involved in this abominable endeavor crashes and burns, except for one that would be predatorily ‘managing’ and ‘hunting’ you!”
     Hopefully, there won’t be any sentient beings on those planes.
     Here’s a term some of you will be interested in: “lawyer.”
     I got 10 hits.
     I won’t spoil all of them for you, but this is my favorite:
     “However I continue to face federal charges for this incident, after having never faced more than a speeding ticket in my life. 8. Park Service will not tell my lawyer and I how far they think my moose was over the boundary….”
     I take back what I said before – we should care. This is good stuff that needs to be in the public domain.
     Enjoy.

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