Bristol Palin: Chip Off the Ol’ Blockhead

Bristol Palin’s acorn clearly didn’t fall far from the Sarah Palin tree, as evidenced by this ignorant and/or dishonest take on the state of Kentucky denying tax incentives for Answers in Genesis’ Noah’s Ark theme park. She gets pretty much every aspect of it completely wrong.

I just get so sick of hearing about the “separation of church and state.” Because it usually means the state is pushing Christians around. Here’s the latest example.

Answers in Genesis is building a life-sized Noah’s Ark in Kentucky and a theme park to go with it. “Ark Encounter” will bring hundreds of jobs and millions of visitors to boost Kentucky’s economy. The state has a program to encourage tourism that refunds sales tax to big parks like this for the first 10 years they’re open. The plans for “Ark Encounter” were approved by the state in 2011 along with the tax credits.

But now, out of the blue, Kentucky officials say they’ve changed their mind! Answers in Genesis won’t be approved for the program unless they agree to hire people who aren’t Christians and unless the exhibit doesn’t talk about Christianity.

Let’s count the false claims, shall we?

1. No, that isn’t what separation of church and state means. It’s just that you think losing your ability to impose your religious views on others means you’re being pushed around.

2. No, it wasn’t “out of the blue” that the state pulled the tax credits. It happened because AIG put out a classified ad for a job that explicitly said they would require employees to be Christian. Employment discrimination on the basis of religion is illegal at both the state and federal level and the Kentucky tax incentives program requires that the project comply with that law. In fact, they can’t discriminate on such a basis even without the tax breaks.

3. No, it has nothing to do with what they can talk about at the ark park, only about whether they can refuse to hire non-Christians.

You tell me — Just how is that possible at a park about Noah’s Ark?? It’s obviously going to be based on the Bible! And they knew it.

It isn’t possible because your claim wasn’t true.

Well, AIG’s not taking it. They’re still going to build the park, and probably will have to take this to court to get the credits they were promised. As it turns out, the reasons they’re being denied aren’t even in the law.

Yes, actually, they are. And AIG is going to lose if they go to court and they almost certainly know it.

"You're all ignoring a big question: how did they get the frogs to drink from ..."

Warning: Alex Jones is Going to ..."
"Ah. So, go to war with everyone who looks at you funny, screw the environment ..."

Crokin: Trump Was Sending a Message ..."
"That sounded like Tex Avery would do for a cartoon short"

Swanson: God Will Punish Australia for ..."
"Please explain to me how an endorsement of critical examination of all propositions (or accusations, ..."

How to Think Critically About the ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!


What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • zenlike

    I thought Patheos blogs had comments sections? Well, not for Palin junior apparently, because that might prick through her little bubble of ignorance.

    Also, pretty sure 90+% of the “Kentucky officials” are christian, so it would be a bit weird that they are “pushing Christians around”.

  • blf

    Also, pretty sure 90+% of the “Kentucky officials” are christian, so it would be a bit weird that they are “pushing Christians around”.

    Either the wrong kind of xian or insufficient bribes paid; probably both.

  • eric

    I’m guessing “millions of visitors” is going to turn out to be just as wrong as her other statements.

  • subbie

    “You tell me — Just how is that possible at a park about Noah’s Ark?? ”

    It could be Jewish or Muslim, both of which include the Noah’s Ark story in their narrative. But hey, don’t let facts get in the way of your rhetoric.

  • raven

    AFAICT, this tax break denial is a total red herring.

    If I have the story right, it is 25% off of sales taxes collected. A good deal because it is off the gross sales.

    Kentucky sales tax 6%.

    AIG pays 4.5%, down 1.5%.

    This loss reduces their profit margin by 1.5%. If your profit margin is that low, you are in big trouble. I looked at profit margins for theme parks and they e.g. Disney run 10-15%.

    Most likely, Ken Ham is blowing smoke and falsely claiming persecution solely to scam more money from the clueless and dumb fundie xians. And it is working sort of. Fooled Bristol Palin. And Ham is using this to…raise more money.

  • Larry

    Never let facts get in the way of a good, old fashioned, rant. Jebus knows her momma doesn’t.

  • Larry

    Fooled Bristol Palin.

    A very high hurdle, indeed!

  • raven

    AIG raised $14 million in private donations.

    They raised $62 million from a Municipal junk bond offering. (It isn’t clear how much they actually raised from this bond offering.)

    They are still asking for donations.

    Adding the numbers up, they have raised something like $74 million so far. That is a lot considering. They are now claiming they need $120 million for the whole Ark Park but that is built in phases.

    The Creation Pseudomuseum itself is losing money and atttendance. It really is a monument to the power of modern plastics and seen one plastic dinosaur, seen them all.

    Based on above, they will probably get part of the park build, the Fake Ark which is going up on a concrete foundation. The rest is questionable. Ken Ham looks like a typical fundie xian conperson and it appears, even a lot of people in Kentucky are getting a little tired of him and his schemes.

    Whether is will run at break even or better is unknown. Based on the Creation Pseudomuseum, likely not. I don’t see that they will ever pay off those junk bonds though.

  • raven

    A lot of the future of this project is just people’s guesses, based on how clueless fundie xians really are.

    But one thing is for sure. A lot of people are going to make a lot of money from AIG and the Ark Park. It could be a total failure and they still will.

    It works like any other con, and it might even be legal. Wall Street has made it into a high science and they never end up in prison.

    As an executive or employee, pay yourself a high salary with platinum health insureance, Diamond retirement plan, every perk, bennie, and expense account ever known. Stall, beat around the bush, run out the clock and the treasury.

    If the Ark Park succeeds, you make huge amounts of money.

    If the Ark Park fails, you make huge amounts of money. You get your riches up front.

    If it fails, so what!!! Didn’t you read the prospectus, it said it was risky. Then take the land and improvements and do something with them, put up condos and houses or something. They are still worth a lot. More money…for you.

    And don’t forget to reserve millions for the lawyers. You will need them. These sorts of operations tend to end up in court as people fight over the bones.

  • Michael Heath

    Click on the link to see a picture of an AIG billboard. AIG wrote, “To all of our intolerant liberal friends . . .”

    That’s all conservative Christians have to distinguish themselves from all but other fundie religionists, lies.

  • John Pieret

    it has nothing to do with what they can talk about at the ark park, only about whether they can refuse to hire non-Christians

    Even assuming that it is legal for the state to extend these tax breaks to a religious theme park (and it may well be, as long as the same breaks are offered to all comers, including secular businesses and organizations) and assuming they could have a “ministerial exception,” allowing discrimination in hiring of people who will be conveying the religious theme (also possible), the ad was for an expert in animatronics, not for someone who would be directly interacting with the public. And what about all the ticket takers, trash collectors, landscapers, bathroom cleaners, etc., who would not be conveying any religious message?

  • Michael Heath

    Given Bristol Palin’s familial environment – including the incoherency of her mother and Bristol’s lack of education, I’d be surprised if she wrote the post that Ed links to above. That post’s a huge step up from her mom’s capabilities.

    Not that Bristol’s post is a good argument. She too demonstrates her bigotry, divisiveness, ignorance, dishonesty, and inability to present a cogent argument. But at least it’s not a babbling word salad of gibberish that’s the best her mom can do.

  • http://festeringscabofrealityblogspot.com fifthdentist

    It must be so comforting to have a total lack of empathy, scruples and decency genes, to be able to chalk up one’s wealth and success to hard work no matter how many people have to be screwed out of their money in order to make that money. And if granny gives all her money to support Ken Ham and can’t pay the heating bill and freezes to death or can’t afford her blood pressure medicine and ends up dead, well, that was the Lord’s will for her; we are not to question his divine plan.

    I’ve seen the short con, preachers begging for money for fuel and expenses at tent meetings. But those are nothing compared to a long con such as the one being played here. This loss of tax breaks could be a boon for them. They know their audience bites harder for the Christian persecution card than anything else.

  • whheydt

    There’s another lie in there that hasn’t been mentioned yet… Kentucky *didn’t* “withdraw” the tax incentive. The original approval of tax breaks had a time limit. That time ran out. When AIG went back to get a *new* approval is when this all blew up.

  • eric

    I feel some pity/sadness for people like Bristol. Yes they are responsible for their own decisions and actions etc… However, due to her name and family, I’m sure the outside world (and possibly her family) is in many ways strongly incentivising any decisions she makes that would push her into conservative politics, and the outside world would similarly penalize her if she took a radically different path. She’s been pigeonholed: Bristol Palin the conservative commentator has an audience, Bristol Palin the political science major may get scholarships. Bristol Palin the painter or tree-hugging liberal isn’t going to get an audience. or scholarship, or be taken seriously. So all else being equal, let me mix my metaphors and say its easy for me to see how she might gravitate to the gravy train.

  • http://en.uncyclopedia.co/wiki/User:Modusoperandi Modusoperandi

    Odd. I thought you Liberals liked The Beatitudes…

    Yea, blessed are the builders of Ark Parks, for theirs is a reduction of twenty five percent off the State Sales Tax.

  • busterggi

    The best acorn in the world can fall just so far from a rotted stump.

    Besides, the whole Ark thing is Jewish, not Christian.

  • Michael Heath

    eric @ 15,

    I don’t buy your argument for a second. There’s plenty of PR hay to be made opposing the positions and behavior of her mother. Bristol Palin could easily leverage her mother’s brand while developing a brand of her own, where that differentiation made news. E.g., Mitt Romney, George W. Bush, and Meghan McCain immediately come to mind.

  • Michael Heath

    I think what we’re instead observing from Bristol Palin is a lack of character, greed, histrionics, and laziness she observed being around her mother.

  • freemage

    eric @15: To be perfectly blunt, I think Bristol Palin is a genuine (and, IMNSHO, rare) example of liberal hypocrisy. There was WAY too much glee over her single mother status during her mom’s VP campaign. Not everyone on the Left, certainly, but there was a timidity about correcting the folks did choose to hammer the issue. The teen mom who learned abstinence only was too low-hanging a fruit to pass up, for a lot of folks. And so, while this bit of punditry was obvious drivel, I can’t see how anyone would be surprised that she’s openly hostile to the Left.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    I feel some pity/sadness for people like Bristol. Yes they are responsible for their own decisions and actions etc… However, due to her name and family, I’m sure the outside world (and possibly her family) is in many ways strongly incentivising any decisions she makes that would push her into conservative politics…

    Eh, Bristol Palin comes across as the quintessential conservative, and I don’t think anyone has pushed her into it. She was born a child of privilege, lacking any particular talent or brains but having riches handed to her anyway because of her family name. And in spite of this or perhaps as a psychological justification for it, she constantly postures herself as an aggrieved victim.

  • http://www.pandasthumb.org Area Man

    They raised $62 million from a Municipal junk bond offering. (It isn’t clear how much they actually raised from this bond offering.)

    I’ve tried to figure this out and have come up short. Ham claimed to have sold the full value of the bonds sometime last spring, but this was a couple of months after the bond issue was about to be rescinded in early Feb. unless they could sell $55 million (or something close to that) by the deadline. As of early Jan. they only had about half of that, collected over a much longer period. After the deadline passed, there was no news either positive or negative that I’ve been able to find. So either Ham is completely lying, or the bond terms got extended somehow, or some very deep pocketed benefactors stepped up at the last minute.

    Even if they did get the whole amount, which they are supposed to pay back (but cannot be forced to), that gives them enough to break ground. They’ll need another $70+ million to finish the project.

  • raven

    To be perfectly blunt, I think Bristol Palin is a genuine (and, IMNSHO, rare) example of liberal hypocrisy.

    No.

    Bristol Palin was and is a typical example of fundie xian hypocricy. A teenage single mother. This is about the exact opposite of what being sexually “pure” is in fundieland. They aren’t supposed to have sex until they are married.

    Liberal hypocrisy? Since when did liberals bring up Bristol Palin and when did they force here to have sex with some guy she really didn’t know?