Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Whoa! I didn't think of this!

This comment came in as a response to my post "At Long Last" earlier today.

From Jen: There is no reason whatsoever for MJ to refer to Trig as her NEW baby brother unless he is related to her blood-wise….

I think this is critical enough that I want to comment on it specifically. I spent a great deal of time in doing that post looking at cabinetry, and chairs, and trying to figure out family trees. I spent so much time trying to put together what some comments might "mean," that I neglected to try to figure out how a seventeen year old girl thinks. (And I should know since I recently had three of them. Not all at once, thank God.) I was looking at reality. I should have been looking at emotion. And emotion comes through in these pictures, loud and clear.

Jen's comment got me thinking. Really thinking. How do seventeen year old girls feel about babies? Specifically, I thought about how I would have felt if a good close friend of mine had had a new sibling come on the scene when I was seventeen. You know what I came up with? I would have felt mostly grossed out that her parents had had sex. (I mean, come on! They're in their forties! Forty year old people don't have SEX. Do they?)

And then, secondly, probably a little pissed off because I would be worried that baby-sitting tasks might interfere with our future good times. And thirdly, in this case, given the fact by the time Mercedes visited it would have been known that Trig had Down's, I think I would have been very put off by that as well. "Oh my God. First they had a baby, and now he's retarded." It sounds cruel and selfish, but I am being honest. I think this is exactly how I would have felt at age seventeen about the "special-needs" newborn sibling of a friend; I wonder why we think Mercedes Johnston is any different.

"Jen," who made the above comment, has hit a bull's eye with this one. If Sarah Palin were Trig's mom and Bristol her really really good friend, Mercedes certainly might have come over to see the baby and brought a small gift. It would be good manners. But it doesn't matter how she regards Bristol, in late April or in the future. It doesn't matter how she thinks of Gov. Palin. And you know, it really doesn't even matter that inexplicably she refers to Trig as her "brother." It doesn't matter what she's saying. What matters is how she appears to be ACTING.

Jen is correct. Mercedes Johnston's enthusiasm for Trig is best explained and in fact only makes sense if Trig is something TO her. Something WAY beyond the younger sibling of a good friend. ( And yes I know that there have been bizarre suggestions all along that somehow Trig is TRACK'S child by Levi and Mercedes Johnston's MOTHER, but there is absolutely no evidence that this is the true and no earthly reason I can think of that Sarah Palin would fake a pregnancy in that case.) If Trig IS Mercedes Johnston's blood relative, given everything we know, by far the most plausible explanation is that he is her brother's child.

Then the baby becomes part of your group. Part of your "set." Part of your paradigm. She's possessive about him: she uses the possessive pronoun MY as in "my new baby brother" specifically. Then, posting his picture on your MySpace page and gushingly referring to him as "most adorable little man ever" makes sense in a way that it could not if he were the child of the parents of a friend.


gamende said...

would Levi be kissing the baby knowing it came out of his girlfriend's mothers you-know-what just 4 months earlier? I doubt it.

ABS said...

Exactly. And think of how excited young women can be when they have their first niece or nephew. Usually VERY excited and proud of their new identity in relation to the baby.

Somewhere there is absolute proof...keep at it, Audrey!!!

GraceR said...

I would agree except for the fact she called him her brother. He would only be her "brother" (brother-in-law actually) if Bristol were her sister-in-law. If Bristol were the mother, then Trig would be her nephew. Even not-very-bright teens know that. If Levi is the dad, no way Trig is Mercedes' brother.

Anonymous said...

I absolutely agree. As a college student and someone who was (very) recently seventeen, I think my response, had I believed Trig to be Sarah's baby, would have been slightly less crude but, in effect, the same. I would not have considered my brother's girlfriend's new sibling, nor even a very close friend's new sibling, to be part of my family. But my brother's two-week-old baby? Of course.

Anonymous said...

Pregnant looking Bristol? There is a date on the article.



He’s huge for a 6 month old baby, don’t you think?


Sarah Palin holding Trig ever so “nicely” eh!

Also an old article I found here
Sarah Palin spoke briefly of her son and first-born Track

Don’t you think it would have said “oldest son/first son”, maybe that is just me being pedantic.

Another old article
Piper shuffled around the kitchen wearing an "I Love New York" t-shirt and high heels (most likely her mother's) while holding baby brother Trig.

So not only are they giving a 7 year old a baby to hold, the 7 year old looks to be wearing pretty big heels, AND carrying a baby! (I didn’t watch the video so Piper may have removed her heels). It’s bad enough a 7 year old carries a baby so much anyway, let alone a 7 year old with heels.


amy said...

Good point. When I was 16 my best friend's mom had a baby and I was not pleased at all. I didn't even visit the house for months because I was grossed out -- I can't even imagine bringing a camera!

Anonymous said...

Audrey and posters,

Although you analysis of Sadie's potential thoughts vis-a-vis tiny Trig are valid, there is far too much speculation into her state of mind and any Pailn/Johnston family dynamics.

The arrival of a sweet, innocent baby into a family could elicit all sorts of emotions, and we can't conclude too much from a few photos and dubious captions. I believe one caption included the phrase "Triggy-bear", but none of us think Trig is a bear. All of her captions could be interpreted as figures of speech.

On the other hand, if she had captioned a photo with "Me and my nephew Trig", it would be game over. But we have to conclude that, given the closeness of her familial expressions with the Palins, she would be in on any ruse of Sarah being the mother, and would not post anything that would directly contradict that public assertion.

As to the way she is acting, I've always believed that the Palins (and, I suppose, the Johnstons) saw Trig as a "family baby", which is a common viewpoint for an unplanned teen pregnancy that would harm the family reputation so that Mom covers. That's the point of the 'Desperate Housewives' episode everyone refers to makes.

Therefore, I don't think Jen's comment is any particular revelation. There's no other evidence that Sadie is related to Trig by blood. And there's no reason to believe Sarah as Governor would fake a pregnancy for anyone but one of her daughters.


Anonymous said...

Audrey, you are getting to the heart of the matter now by analyzing these photos. I still believe that given her comments that Trig is Mercedes' baby brother rather than her nephew. It is not unheard of that parents with teenagers have an unexpected pregnancy later in life, in the woman's forties, even pre-menopausal. Or even a planned pregnancy in their forties. And the Down Syndrome odds for a young woman are not impossible but are not as likely. I keep coming back to that: how many young women do you know who have had DS babies? Having worked in the OB-GYN field for many years, I do not know anyone under the age of 40 who delivered a DS child. Other chromosomal defects, yes, but not DS.

For the Bristol-as-mom theory, consider what the Palins would have done if their daughter's child had not had Down Syndrome? (If Trig in fact has DS; he may well have FAS, as has been suggested.) Would they have let her keep him? Someone has posted that strict evangelical families might take their daughter's illegitimate child as their own. Families have done this in the past to remove the stigma of being an unwed mother from their daughter's reputation. Many times the child is raised not knowing that his big sister is actually his mother. This way they keep the baby in the family, as opposed to putting the child up for adoption.

Nearly everything we know about this family is information that they have put out there for public consumption. There are some corroborating "local" sources, but nothing official. Was this family so isolated in the Wasilla community that no one was observing them over the past year? Could this be actually possible given that Sarah Palin is the Governor?

Keep up the investigation, Audrey. The truth is out there.

--Reader from Ohio

Anonymous said...

I have four teenagers. Were I to subject them to the embarassment of producing an infant, it's possible one of their close friends might come to visit. One of them might even politely ask to hold the baby (though I can't see any of them looking at the baby the way MJ does, or bragging about it on the internet). But even were I governor of my state, my view of human nature tells me there is no chance my teenager's friend would want to pose for any pictures with my infant--let alone a photo with me and the baby--unless she had an awfully close additional bond with that baby.

On another point, I think the poster who references Piper being "trained" to view herself as the "sister" (note Palin calling Piper "sister" on film) is on to something. In my opinion, it's going to be news to Piper when she finds out that baby is her nephew. But at her age there's no way the adults in the know can continue the charade forever--the most innocuous question to a guileless seven year old might start a chain reaction ("Piper: are you all excited about having a new baby in the family next month? Are you going to be a flowergirl in the wedding?").

Maybe some of the Palinesque desperation we've seen lately (why in the world is she so frantically revisiting her wacky spin about this very issue now?) has to do with this. That little girl (and her big sister Willow) is going to be subject to a whole lot of questions when she's back among her peers (and their siblings and parents) at school ...Maybe that's why her parents are in no rush to send the girls back to school, back into their community, because now there will be no more Secret Service to protect them against everyday queries and conversation?

Count me as among those who will not be shocked if the remaining kids need to be home-schooled or otherwise removed from the ordinary give-and-take of healthy life in their community. More casualties of this horrendous deception.

Anonymous said...

Alert: At the end of this video of Matt Lauer talking to Piper, Sarah refers to Piper as "Sister!" More Alaskan rhetoric?


So maybe Mercedes Johnson referring to Trig as "brother" is more Alaskan talk for "brother-in-law?" Won't we all be shocked if we eventually find out that Trig is indeed Sarah's child as hard as it is to believe that?

amy said...

To the poster above, I have always suspected that Bristol was going to put her baby up for adoption but couldn't because of the DS. Do adoption agencies require amniocentisus? I'm not sure, but it would seem likely. That would explain Sarah's late announcement of the pregnancy and the fact that she knew Trig had DS before the birth. Just a theory, but time will tell if Bristol gives birth in December, she is probably not Trig's mom.

Punkinbugg said...

This isn't just a story line on Desperate Housewives; it really happened to singer Bobby Darin.

He did not find out until the age of 32 that the woman he thought to be his sister was in fact his mother and and the woman he thought was his deceased mother was in fact his grandmother. This was listed in VH1's "100 Most Shocking Moments in Rock and Roll History" (2001).

The reason the secret was revealed? He was THINKING ABOUT RUNNING FOR POLITICAL OFFICE and his sister/mother confessed, just in case he was vetted!!

What a concept!

Gryphen said...

Audrey is exactly right in her interpretation of what those MySpace pictures mean.

I am actually the blogger who first posted those pictures on my site. (as well as the since removed MySpace link).

I found a link that was sent by a commenter to Mudflats, and though they did not seem to realize the significance of what they had found I recognized it immediately.

Before I posted them I sent the links and downloaded pictures to a bunch of my blogger friends with instructions to save them to their hard drive and to contact THEIR blogger friends with the same instructions.

But anyhow I always felt that the "baby brother" label was not the important piece. It was, as Audrey pointed out, that she felt he was important and precious enough to share with her friends on her MySpace page.

I searched those pages very carefully and I can assure that baby Trig was the only baby on them.

The rest were of typical teenage friends and activities, including underage drinking and use of firearms. But to this group Trig was important enough for Mercedes to brag about.

I was convinced when I found them that it represented the "smoking gun" and have always been confused by the number of various interpretations of them. They seemed pretty clear and straightforward to me.

Anonymous said...

Sarah is like a female George Bush, Sr. or George Bush, Jr. speaking in phrases rather than in sentences. She drives me nuts. Thank God the McCain/Palin ticket didn't win the election. Her description of her feelings about Hillary Clinton in this interview with Greta is the perfect example of her inability to speak fluently (just like her disastrous interview with Katie Couric):


Anonymous said...

At the beginning of the "Moose Season" video there is a brief shot of Bristol sitting at the counter looking very sad and disgusted. She then walks behind Sarah also looking very sad and disgusted. I believe it is Bristol rather than Willow because she is taller than Willow:


Mary G. said...

I think Mercedes is a close friend to Bristol. Bristol may not have been sure of when she got pregnant (I think she is the mother of Trig, and am referring to that pregnancy)--she may not have told her own mother until she was 3 or 4months or more along--remember, she was 16 in August 2007 when she would have conceived, if the due date was May--which it may not have been. But she may well have had a heart-to-heart with her BFF Mercedes.... I think Mercedes would have been privy to the situation and the Palin solution--thus "baby brother" is just her way of supporting Bristol. I also think that many teenagers actually do like tiny newborns (they are magical!) and Mercedes has a real beam on her face while holding Trig. Being in on the secret and helping Bristol would indicate her own special relationship to Bristol and Trig--even on Myspace, she would not have let slip "nephew". I am not sure why we are being so literal-minded. mary g

wayofpeace said...

OFF TOPIC but wanted to share it.

Dear Sarah Palin, This is GOD....


Sarah, Sarah, Sarah...

What do I have to do to get you to stay home & raise your family.

First I send you a special child, one that needs your extra attention & love,

then I bring together your daughter & her boyfriend & allow them to consumate their love.

I thought these two signs would have been enough to let you know

that I wanted you at home to do my will.

Finally I had you lose the election.

(Sorry Mr. McCain, you were justa pawn in my grand scheme)

I don't know what other signs you need from me.

Please don't make me resort to nasty plagues.

Your friend & creator,


ocean said...

Andrew Sullivan today: http://tinyurl.com/6yxr89

My point is not to persecute or hound some random person. I wish I had never heard of Sarah Palin. I wish this nightmare had never happened. I wish totally innocent by-standers, like Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston and Heather Bruce and Trig Palin, had not had their lives disrupted by this circus. It's distressing to everyone, which is why most journalists left many aspects of this charade alone. But Palin is claiming vindication, is on every cable show, is at the National Governors Association Conference, and is touted as a future leader of the GOP. There comes a point at which you have to simply call a time out and insist that this farce cease and some basic accountability and transparency be restored to the process. Since no one else seems willing to do so, the Dish will stay on the case. So where are those medical records anyway?

Emily said...

Eh....My guess is that Mercedes and Bristol are very close friends, not just because Bristol and Levi are dating.

I've known friends who consider each other's families their own, right down to calling their friend's siblings their own, and their friend's parents their own.

It's not common, but it happens. And if Mercedes considers Bristol to be like her sister, she very well might consider Trig a brother.

I grew up with a best friend whose family was like my own - her mom called me "daughter", and treated me just like family. If Mercedes feels this way about the Palins, and they feel this way about her, she probably would be very excited about Trig's birth.

Anonymous said...

Audrey - did you notice that SP didn't once say she gave birth to Trig? Instead she stated repeatedly in the recent interviews that she is "Trig's mom". She also referenced Bristol with Greta VanSustren, pointing out that people were saying that "Bristol is Trig's mom". Interesting choice of wording "Trig's mom"

The statement I'll need to hear from SP is "I gave birth to Trig Palin with Dr. CBJ in attendance" This would, of course, free up CBJ to confirm without violating HIPPA.

Wording, semantics - SP "I never forced anyone to buy anything" Forced?

Anonymous said...

What is this sliding scale for Bristol's age? They just announced she turned 18 yet I've seen numerous accounts of her being 16 last year. You really only can age one year in a 12 month period. She was 17 when Trig was born, which would make her BARELY 17 when he was conceived on the outside.

Anonymous said...

Here's another thought -- what if teenage Jen simply "misplaces" words in her description?

"my new baby brother"

Could she really have meant to say "my brother's new baby"?

Or could she have deliberately written her caption "in code," y'know, "just in case" ...


Anonymous said...

Regarding the birth timeline, we know that this picture is taken April 18 http://www.ktuu.com/global/
That baby looks older and bigger than a 6 lb newborn (and though this was taken in the hospital, it is in a hallway, not a room or the nursery). Do you think it is possible that no one knew that the baby had DS until Bristol gave birth to him in early March, at which point Sarah announces her pregnancy because they decide to keep him(due to the fact they would have difficulty putting him up for adoption)? He could be there getting his 6 week checkup! That is why he just looks so big and filled out on April 18.

Anonymous said...

"To the poster above, I have always suspected that Bristol was going to put her baby up for adoption but couldn't because of the DS. Do adoption agencies require amniocentisus? I'm not sure, but it would seem likely. That would explain Sarah's late announcement of the pregnancy and the fact that she knew Trig had DS before the birth. Just a theory, but time will tell if Bristol gives birth in December, she is probably not Trig's mom."

NO, adoption agencies do NOT require amniocentesis. They do require proof of pregnancy, which is usually obtained by the birthmother signing a statement granting permission for her doctor to release information to the agency and/or adoptive parents. Proof could be a copy of medical records indicating a positive pregnancy test, a copy of an ultrasound image provided by the doctor, etc.

IF Trig is Bristol's son, I highly doubt that there was ever a plan to put him up for adoption. HALF of all pregnancies in the US are unintended, yet fewer than 1% of all babies born each year are placed for adoption. It just doesn't happen that often, and among those women who DO place babies for adoption, very few are teenagers. Teens are actually more likely to parent. The "typical" birthmother is usually a woman in twenties.

In addition to this, there ARE families who will gladly adopt a baby with Down Syndrome. Some will even spend tens of thousands of dollars to adopt such children from orphanages in China, Russia, Korea and other countries. Although many families would prefer a healthy baby, there are plenty out there who are happy to open their hearts and families to a child with special needs.

I've also known many self-described pro-life people who suddenly become awfully pro-choice when they or someone close to them "needed" an abortion. Given Sarah Palin's overall lack of ethics, it would not surprise me in the least that she'd view a secretive abortion - likely done out of state - as an option for her unwed teen daughter. But that option could easily have been taken away from her if she didn't know Bristol was pregnant with Trig until the pregnancy was quite advanced. Most teens do not track their cycles, heck, most adult women don't either, unless they're actively trying to conceive, so it's very reasonable to assume that Bristol's due date - either with Trig or with this current pregnancy is a pretty rough estimate.


Anonymous said...

"would Levi be kissing the baby knowing it came out of his girlfriend's mothers you-know-what just 4 months earlier? I doubt it."

That picture, more than anything else I've seen, suggests that Trig is Levi and Bristol's child. I know NO 18 year old boy who is that affectionate and intimate with someone else's child.

Even when my husband (who is in his 30s) and I were expecting our daughter, it would not have occurred to him to kiss and cuddle an infant relative of mine.


Sarah said...

Remember when Levi Johnston commented that he is happy to be having his FIRST child? That struck me as odd... It's a gratuitous reference that the coming baby is his first, when no one asked. His comment was suspicious to me because if it is truly his first child, why is he already putting it in the context of second, third, fourth and so on???

Mir said...

I think you're reaching. In high school, one of the girls in my class became a big sister to a baby brother. We ALL doted on him. He was adorable and we fussed over who could hold him. Babies elicit overwhelming feelings of love, and in teenage girls who are hormonally charged and might not get to see newborns regularly, the chance to hold your best friend's new baby brother probably wouldn't be passed up.

Jen said...

I'm the "Jen" and my name is really Jen and i'm not a teen -- i'm 40 :)

but i have been investigating the palin pregnancy mystery since Aug 30th and gathered much of the same stuff that Audrey did.

Keep in mind, the pictures are a series of 3...

1 with "mommy-in-law" -- i.e., SP (who's mommy in law? not MJ's) why mommy in law, why not mother-in-law -- oh yeah, MJ is a teen, speaking in "endearment" terms.

2nd picture: Me and my NEW baby brother... we all know that Trig would be MJ's nephew, but remember, if MJ already considers Bristol to be her sister-in-law and she adores her big brother, and she's already refered to SP as "mommy-in-law", it makes sense to continue the same endearing language...

the 3rd: FAMILY LOVE with a little ascii heart -- who is it??

Bristol, MJ, and Trig -- they would NOT be family at all...

MJ and Bristol are not related UNLESS Bristol and Levi are already married and that's their baby.

As far as the 'triggy-bear' -- that's a very common term of endearment for children -- i should know, my husband and i have been calling our daughter 'bear' since she was a baby and she's almost 12 -- and we still call her that.

she could have used 'triggy-boo' too and it would have been similar.

MJ is clearly a 'young' and typical teen by her myspace pics and comments under those pics (for those that have seen them)

she repeatedly uses the heart ascii symbol including the picture of her on Levi's back, claiming: my big brother and best friend (heart) --just like the 'family love' photo.

ok that's it for now :)

Audrey said...

Two comments: I have looked at the gretawire "Moose Hunt" video. I do not see Bristol. There is a dark haired person who is probably on a the crew. She doesn't look disgusted to me as much as she looks bored. A shoot of the size of the Van Sustern one, believe it or not, probably has a crew of at least eight to ten people.

Secondly, Bristol's age. Bristol turned eighteen in mid October. "Last year," (i.e, 2007) she would have been 16 for most of the year, then turning 17 last October. This year, (2008) she would have been 17 for most of the year, but is now 18.

Kids' ages can be confusing. I have six kids, and when they would have birthdays it was always hard to remember. Even the official state of Alaska announcement of Trig's birth listed Willow as 13, when she was actually already 14. I would not put much weight on minor discrepancies in ages.

Anonymous said...

I personally think that Levi's sister is calling Trig "new baby brother' because he is her nephew and nothing else. I am black and my aunt (mom's sister)who was only 12 years older than me called me her baby sister. She always said that she was just too young to be an aunt. Sadie could have felt this way. I just don't see a teenager putting a baby on her myspace page if the baby is just a friend's mom's child. No this is her nephew. We have got to prove this.

tm68 said...

I hate to burst the bubble on the Gretawire video "Moose Season", but the girl you thought was Bristol or Willow was neither. I know both girls and that girl on the video was neither. I don't recognize her at all.

Tina said...

I'm with a poster above: teenage boys do not kiss babies unless they contributed directly to the baby's DNA. Levi's kissing baby Trig at the RNC was as much of an aha moment for me as when i read about the plane ride from Texas ("oh no, she didn't").

I also know that i was in GREAT shape when pregnant with my 5th child, and still showed without mercy by the time i was 4 months along.

Thank you for all of your hard work, Audrey (and your volunteer researchers, too!)

I also want to thank my patient husband for listening to me carry on and on about the plane ride.

OutsiderSA said...

Sorry if this comes out crass.

Looking at these pics:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/09/04/bristol-palin-photos-pict_n_123955.html and specifically this one:


Bristol's breasts seem huge for a 17 year old. If she was/is breastfeeding, then maybe that is why she was dragged along the campaign trail.

I agree with gamende, no 18 yo lad kisses a baby. At that age, boys are NOT paternal unless it is their own.