Categorized | Commentary/Editorial

After Palin’s Tenure, AK’s Credit Rating Raised to Aaa

As Nicole reported last night, S&P has downgraded the nation’s credit rating from AAA to AA+ for the first time in history. While the left desperately tries to convince the country that this is because Obama & Co. haven’t taxed us enough, S&P made clear why they made the decision they made:

The downgrade reflects our opinion that the fiscal consolidation plan that Congress and the Administration recently agreed to falls short of what, in our view, would be necessary to stabilize the government’s medium-term debt dynamics.

More broadly, the downgrade reflects our view that the effectiveness, stability, and predictability of American policymaking and political institutions have weakened at a time of ongoing fiscal and economic challenges to a degree more than we envisioned when we assigned a negative outlook to the rating on April 18, 2011.

While the country suffers under the current leadership, and the economy continues it’s downward spiral; it should be noted that quite the opposite happened in Alaska after a Palin administration. In November of 2010, Moody’s, another one of the three big rating agencies raised Alaska’s rating from Aa1 to Aaa:

Alaska had its bond rating raised to the highest investment grade by Moody’s Investors Service after the oil-rich state amassed financial reserves of $14 billion.

Moody’s raised Alaska one level to Aaa from Aa1 before a $200 million bond sale by the state, which currently has about $475 million of general-obligation debt outstanding. Alaska joins 14 other states, including Texas and Maryland that have a top rating from Moody’s.

We believe the magnitude of reserves, along with conservative financial management, will lead to enduring fiscal strength under all plausible scenarios over the next five to 10 years,” Moody’s said in a news release today.

While it’s true that this upgrade happened during a Parnell administration, confidence in Alaska from this major credit agency didn’t happen overnight.

Governor Palin served Alaska during a time when oil prices were high, but she put into place measures that allowed the states financial reserves to grow, instead of being grossly mismanaged by undisciplined bureaucrats. She also reduced Alaska’s liabilities by 34.6%, as was addressed yesterday. Her forward focused fiscal prudence, in addition to the fact that she addressed Alaska’s financial liabilities, likely gave Moody’s the needed assurance of the state’s fiscal seriousness to increase Alaska’s credit rating.Could we expect the current federal leadership to address liabilities to show rating agencies that America is serious about our fiscal health? Is there any question that the United States government would squander large revenues under the current leadership?

Just imagine if this country opened up energy production, while simultaneously taking bold steps, – such as Governor Palin did in Alaska – to get it’s fiscal house in order. As you can see, it produces exactly the opposite outcome of what we are currently facing today. In the words of Governor Palin, "2012 can’t come soon enough."

Check out this short clip from the CATO Institute on what it means to have our nation’s credit rating downgraded, in simple terms:

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    With Palin, the facts speak for themself. Let’s see what contorted logic is used by the lreft to spin this fact.

    • Greg Legakis

      They’ll give full credit to Parnell

      • HuntingMoose

        who was appointed by Palin.

        Now compare that with tax-cheat Geitner appointed by Obama.

        who has better people around?

        who do you want: a marxist living 50 years on the money of others in the WH or a common sense conservative housewife who can balance her checkbook? (and alaska’s and come 2012 the US checkbook)

      • Vicki

        well, I posted it on my facebook page and credit Gov Palin. Nobody that looks at my page would bother to dice and slice it.
        You just gotta keep planting seeds. If Obama gets to blame everything wrong with this economy on Bush after three years, we can certainly give Gov palin at least partial credit for the boost in Alaska’s rating.

      • CBDenver

        Did you not read the part of the quoted article that said "Moody’s raised Alaska one level to Aaa from Aa1 before a $200 million bond sale by the state, which currently has about $475 million of general-obligation debt outstanding" [empahsis added].  Additional bond sales (i.e. more state debt) is business as usual and happened under Parnell.  That kind of thinking is not what got Alaska an AAA rating.

    • G00DLuck

      The fact is Palin raised taxes

      • Andrew Peterson

        So you’re saying tax hikes are wrong?

        • G00DLuck

          No, I don’t believe raising taxes when and where appropriate is wrong at all. I was trying to expose the contradiction in what Palin and her followers claim are one of their most strongly held convictions and Palin’s action. If what I read is accurate, that she applied a special gradient tax rate on Oil producers to encourage keeping low consumer rates, I personally would approve. I say this almost blindly though, as I have no understanding of the actually tax, the revenues or budgetary figures involved. Nor am I sure the Oil producers couldn’t transfer costs to other states’ consumers some how, hence the problem when taxes aren’t Federal.

      • Shirley Freeman

        Which taxes, how much? Facts, please.

    • Sam_Sonite

      The facts like Palin raised tax revenue?

  • Greg Legakis

    I think Parnell should certainly get some credit.

    What was the rating when Palin took office is the question?

    • Whitney Pitcher

      I don’t think that anyone’s saying that Parnell shouldn’t get some credit. The bond sale happened on his watch. However, this kind of decision is the result of decisions over a period longer than a year. The fact that Governor Palin took steps to reduce debt liabilities and decrease spending had to play a large part. 

      • Guest

        Did the bond sale happen on Parnell’s watch when he was finishing Palin’s term?  If it did, then she deserves all the credit cuz he was following her road map. When he was elected on his own, he began to change course.

    • wpmwindsong

      Unless it was like when the Iran hostages were released the day that Reagan was inaugurated and he was the reason for the release, Parnell probably didn’t have much to do with it.  It probably is more like Reagan getting credit for the tearing down of the Berlin Wall in the fall of 1989 and the demise of the the USSR in 1991 after Bush 41 became President in 1989.

    • CBDenver

      "S&P bumped Alaska’s rating up to AA+ from AA in March 2008, while Moody’s left it unchanged at Aa2″

      • Greg Legakis


        Palin should get credit then.

  • Joneshuynh

    Mr. President,

    That is Fiscal Conservative Leader and soon will be the ONE to clean your mess..

    – Hobbit

    • Dave Kawasaki
    • canarytx

      Well, the US has the first credit rating downgrade since 1917.  A woman who brought her state credit rating up (although the credit goes to the current gov) and a man who screwed up this entire nation. Sounds like an easy choice to me. My problem is, a lot of people still don’t know the truth about Palin. They still believe in the caricature of her since 2008 in newspapers and TV.  We, supporters of Palin, have a tough job ahead.

      Jones Huynh, are you Vietnamese-American like me too? I find the Vietnamese-American crowd in Houston very brainwashed about Palin, I don’t know how to fix it. They refuse even to hear bout her and tune me out each time I open my mouth. It’s sad.

      • Joneshuynh

        It depends upon us to educate our people, start with our own family, our relatives, our friends…

        It’s not easy because it’s part of our culture, women take care children and all the chores around the house. We need to change that state of mind.

      • Sue Lynn

        Get them to see "The Undefeated"…or get the DVD from SarahPac …See the Movie !!!! If that don’t work nothing will…..

  • Dave Kawasaki

    Further evidence that she will beat zer0 bloody with his own record. G*d I’m anxious for November ’12.

  • c4pfan

    Thanks for pointing out what Sarah brings to the table.  I wonder if the GOP even gets it.

    • wodiej

      they don’t.

  • citizenG100

    From the statement by S&P about the downgrade I would infer that the prospects are not too high for much of an improvement if the US continues to have the White House, Senate and House divided among the parties. Since the GOP will almost certainly keep the House in 2012 and are very likely to capture the Senate there is a pitch that Palin can make to the voters in 2012.

    She can say that if we want our top credit rating restored we are going to need to have the party of lower spending in control of both Congress and the White House. More divided government at this stage is just going to lead to more stalemate, and we can’t afford stalemate now. We have a short window of opportunity to get things back on track before it will be too late. Therefore elect me as President, and I can promise, that with a GOP-controlled congress, I will return our nation to a solid fiscal foundation and get back our AAA credit rating.

    • Exgunman

      Hopefully that promise is made with a conservative controlled congress. Having to work with a RINO controlled congress would be pure H—………………………………………..

  • PhilipJames

    Okay guys & girls… re the new banner for site…  as you can see from the image for this topic, we see the Alaskan Flag with blue background and gold stars…. the Dipper and the North Star (and if you remember your school astrology class you remember that you were taught to look up the right side of Dipper to find North Star)
    What would you think if they made the vertical red rectangle on left the same dark blue and the stars gold, leaving the rest in red and the background in white? Would leave no question as to what stars are about and would also be ….  red, white and blue…   without overpowering it and not making it all about the flag.
    Just a thought to make the stars meaning more obvious to people who are not that familiar with the Alaskan Flag.

    • Polarbearpapa

       We like our flag just like it is…..thank you very much…

  • HuntingMoose

    Buffett: The U.S can print money at will so why downgrade?

    [..] Buffett sounded no alarm bells about the downgrade, going so far as to say it wouldn’t have much effect on the markets Monday. "If nothing else takes place, meaning, if all other variables hold and there isn’t say, a new problem in Europe, it won’t make any difference."
    "Think about it. The U.S., to my knowledge owes no money in currency other than the U.S. dollar, which it can print at will. Now if you’re talking about inflation, that’s a different question."[..]

    mr Buffett, you are absolutely right but why did you not tell your buddy in the WH this inflation thing? Are you not also on the economic team somewhere with Obama?

    with inflation and further devaluation of the dollar, we the people can buy less with the money we earn.

    Obama: spreading the misery around since 2006

    Palin: light at the end of the tunnel.

    • Vicki

      You don’t have to worry about inflation if you have enough money to burn a wet mule.

  • PhilipJames

    Personally, I think S&P did this just to emphasize the fact that nothing was fixed or made better by the latest shenanigans in Washington. It was a good move because it forces everyone to pay attention and to try to get the triple A rating back.
    Letting it slide again would have let the jerks in Washington off the hook.

    I do agree with Buffet…  how do you default if you are in charge of printing the money to pay back the debt? The only problem with that is the more you print, the less it is worth and the more you pay in interest rates.

  • prussiantiger

    I believe that Sarah Palin could become the greatest president.  She could bring our credit rating back up to triple A.  If she got ride of the dept of EPA, Energy, and dept of labor for starters that would help and then cut remaining depts 10% each year.  She could promote drill baby drill, mine baby mine, and thorium energy such that the job markets would explode and our cost for energy would drop nicely. With the increase in revenue from tons of new employed people that would allow for paying down the debt. This action would also lead to an increase in the purchasing power of the dollar which would in turn lead to lower prices for just about everything that is priced in dollars. Very simple solution to a complex problem.

  • prussiantiger

    I believe that Sarah Palin could become the greatest president.  She could bring our credit rating back up to triple A.  If she got ride of the dept of EPA, Energy, and dept of labor for starters that would help and then cut remaining depts 10% each year.  She could promote drill baby drill, mine baby mine, and thorium energy such that the job markets would explode and our cost for energy would drop nicely. With the increase in revenue from tons of new employed people that would allow for paying down the debt. This action would also lead to an increase in the purchasing power of the dollar which would in turn lead to lower prices for just about everything that is priced in dollars. Very simple solution to a complex problem

    • David Zimmerman

      That will be AFTER the repeal of Obamacare.

      • prussiantiger

        your absolutely correct. Obama and his cohorts have screwed up so much it is  hard to keep track of what they have done!

  • TheresaAK

    "Alaska’s Flag"

    Written by Marie Drake
    Composed by Elinor Dusenbury

     Adopted on February 23 1955.

    Sheet Music | MIDI
    Tune | Realaudio

    1st Verse of Alaska’s Flag Song

    Eight stars of gold on a field of blue,
    Alaska’s flag, may it mean to you,
    The blue of the sea, the evening sky,
    The mountain lakes and the flowers nearby,
    The gold of the early sourdough’s dreams,
    The precious gold of the hills and streams,
    The brilliant stars in the northern sky,
    The "Bear," the "Dipper," and shining high,
    The great North Star with its steady light,
    O’er land and sea a beacon bright,
    Alaska’s flag to Alaskans dear,
    The simple flag of a last frontier.

    2nd Verse of Alaska’s Flag Song

    — Words by Carol Beery Davis

    A Native lad chose the Dipper’s stars

    For Alaska’s flag that there be no bars

    Among our culture. Let it be known

    Through years the Native’s past has grown

    To share life’s treasures, hand in hand,

    To keep Alaska our Great-Land;

    We love the northern midnight sky,

    The mountains, lakes and streams nearby.

    The great North Star with its steady light

    Will guide all cultures, clear and bright,

    With nature’s flag to Alaskans dear,

    The simple flag of the last frontier.

    Origin of Song:

    The words to the song Alaska’s Flag were written by Marie
    Drake, The
    Territorial Legislature adopted Alaska’s Flag as Alaska’s official song
    in 1955.

    "Alaska’s Flag" written by Marie Drake a long-time employee of
    Alaska Department of Education, and set to music composed by Elinor
    Dusenbury, who husband was commander of Chilkoot Barracks at Haines
    from 1933 to 1936 was adopted as the official state song in 1955, and
    was gifted to the University of Alaska in April 1960. Carol Beery Davis
    wrote the second verse to "Alaska’s Flag" and gifted the words
    (protected by copyright) to the University of Alaska Foundation in
    February 1987.

    Carol Beery Davis, an Alaskan pioneer and poet laureate, as
    maker of the second verse. While the official Alaska state song
    recognizes and describes Alaska’s flag, the words of Davis in the
    second verse of "Alaska’s Flag", "A Native lad chose the Dipper’s
    stars, For Alaska’s flag that there be no bars", provides recognition
    of Bennie Benson who designed Alaska’s official flag in 1927. Benny
    Benson described his design of the flag:

    "The blue field is for the Alaska Sky and the forget-me-not, an Alaskan
    flower. The North Star is for the future of Alaska, the most northerly
    in the union. The Dipper is for the Great Bear – symbolizing strength."

    Marie Drake:

    Marie Drake, author of the words to Alaska’s Flag, the
    song, was born Feburary 11, 1888. In 1907 she married James Drake in
    Van Wert, Ohio, where she was engaged in social work with the Y.W.C.A.
    and the Red Cross. They came to Alaska when her husband was assigned to
    work with the Bureau of Public Roads. In 1917, Lester Henderson was
    appointed first commissioner of education, and he hired Marie Drake as
    his secretary. She remained with the Department for 28 years, retiring
    July 1, 1945.

    Marie Drake assumed the post of assistant commissioner of
    in 1934. She edited and wrote most of the material for the department’s
    School Bulletin, that was circulated throughout the
    school system. The poem that later provided the words for the official
    state song first appeared on the cover of the October 1935 School
    In recognition of her devotion to the young people of Alaska, Marie
    Drake received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from the University
    of Alaska in 1958. She died March 5, 1963.

  • citizenG100

    Those that would claim Governor Palin bears no responsibility for the upgrade of Alaska’s credit rating because the actual upgrade occurred shortly after she’d left office and not when she was in office are like a man who claims a woman’s baby isn’t his because she gave birth after they’d had sex and not during sex.

  • toongoon

    That’s not going to make the leftists very happy with Mrs. Palin. They just can’t comprehend fiscal sanity….well,with them, sanity in general actually.

  • M_Baker

    With all the billions of dollars they have received from big oil over the years, not just during Sarah’s time in office, it’s really no surprise.  If my memory is correct on the amount, Alaska has about 50 billion in savings from oil taxes they have collected over the years.  The oil money has also allowed the State to eliminate all income and property taxes, along with giving every citizens an annual check from the State.  Sarah did raise the oil taxes during her term as govenor, but that move is questionable by some who claim it has reduced oil exploration in Alaska, and causing big oil to move their exploration to more friendlier states.  There is also a move lead by Gov. Parnel to lower the taxes back to where they were before she raised the oil tax.  Govenor Parnel who was the Lt. Govenor under Palin and who was once a lobbiest for oil, has also been accused of being too friendly to big oil.  So really the credit should also be given  to past govenors and the legislators that had the foresight to tax big oil.

    • toongoon

      Don’t let obama hear about Alaska’s bank account. sarc

    • Whitney Pitcher

      You really like to go out of your way to avoid giving Gov. Palin any credit for anything, don’t you? If these previous leaders had any foresight whatsoever, they would have taken steps to reduce liabilities and spending. That’s what contributes to an improved credit rating. Governor Palin’s the one who actually did this. 

      • M_Baker

        I gave her some credit for the increase in rating, I just didn’t give her full credit when so many other people were actively involved.  It’s only fair and honest to give the other people who were involved credit for their part in making the credit increase possible. If you have other facts to counter what I wrote I’d would love to hear from you.  Adding another factor to what I failed to mention in my original comment, was the role of the Alaskan Constitution.  The State’s Constitution gave every citizen of the state equal ownership of the State’s resources which was very democratic and fair to everyone.  The Constitution was written in 1959 and was very much ahead of the times.  I cited the facts of why others deserved credit for the increase in credit rating which was not mentioned in the article.  To ignore the others is just spin.

        • wodiej

          Regardless of all of your blather, the Governor is the EXECUTIVE and guides the state.  No one thinks that Gov. Palin was God in Alaska and she did it all by herself and she has never claimed to either.  So get off your  soapbox about it and move on.

        • CBDenver

          In 2002 the credit rating of AK was lowered from stable to negative

          The idea that Alaska has always been a good credit risk is clearly false.  The fiscal policies of the government are essential to having a good or bad credit rating.

          ACES (Alaska’s Clear and Equitable Share) was enacted in 2007 under Gov Palin’s leadership. 

          "In November 2007, the Alaska Legislature passed House Bill 2001, known as Alaska’s Clear and Equitable Share (ACES). ACES made modifications to the prior production tax called the Petroleum Profits Tax (PPT), enacted in 2006. The changes made first with PPT and later with ACES represented substantial production tax reform in that the basis of the tax shifted from the gross value to the net value of oil and gas production. The gross tax which had been in place prior to the PPT is generally referred to as the Economic Limit Factor (ELF)." 

          "The ACES production tax has been effective in allowing the state to share in the benefits of high oil profitability. It has also responded well to lower oil prices by reducing state tax burden on Alaska’s oil and gas producers "

          • M_Baker

            I never stated Alaska always had a high credit rating.  I said that it was many people and not just Palin who is responsible for the credit increase.  I also agree with your comment on ACES. ACES did make modifications, and those modifications were primarily increases in taxes on the oil companies, especially when oil prices increased.  You were also correct in stating most states tax according to severense, but Alaska also added ACES in taxing oil. Many say it was not a good idea because it caused oil companies to explore elsewhere.  That theory has never been proven by the oil companies, along with their claim lowering taxes would create higher production and more jobs.  Currently Parnell and others in the legislature are trying to lower the taxes.  The problem I see with Parnell trying to lower the taxes is that he was once an oil company lobbest and may be pushing for lower taxes because he has more sympathy for the oil companies than the citizens.  Since I never said anything about ACES, I don’t see why your response is necissary.

        • friskyness

          Palin was the first governor to actually put that in motion. Yes the Alaskan constitution said every citizen has equal ownership, but no one saw a dime until Palin. Thanks to her ACES the citizens are seeing money. So give credit where credit is due.  If there is a credit boast in Alaska its all thanks to Palin. Parnell is just continuing her ideas. But he is trying to diminish ACES.

          • M_Baker

            Sorry, but your incorrect about Palin being the first to send out annual checks to the citizens of Atlaska.  The annual checks varied from year to year starting low and generally rising each year as more money became available.  I’ll also stick with what I wrote that it was many people who are responsible for the credit rating increasing, not just Sarah. 

            • friskyness

              I’ll stick with what I wrote. Palin was the executive. She was the leader. Others may have agreed with her, but she led them.  It’s all Palin. You may not like that, but too bad. Facts are facts.  ACES is Palin’s doing, others may have followed but it’s all Palin.

    • John Norton

      The second day in on her job as Mayor of Wasilla she cut property taxes two-thirds now what she did for her town she has done for her state..Gov. Palin did the setup for Parnell making it possible for him to cut taxes There is more fish in the sea…One oil co.dont like,tough there are others that want to drill in Alaska…Thats coming from Gov. Palin…

      • M_Baker

        She did reduce property tax, but according to some she left Wassila in debt.  I don’t agree she left Wassila in debt because the debt was mostly because of the cost of Wassila’s new sports center that was built during her time as mayor.  The sport center was put to a vote with city residents, which the residents agreed to build.  Because it was a decision of Wassila residents, I don’t see why anyone can say she left the city in debt.    

    • RebinTexas

      M Baker – all you seem to do here – is look for a reason, any reason, to dismiss accomplishments by Sarah. Yet, you talk in circles……….Why don’t you go spend your time somewhere else……I do wonder who you really work for – Lisa maybe?

      FYI, Moody’s raised Alaska’s credit rating to AAA largely due to fiscal improvement under @SarahPalinUSA: – per Joshua Green of the Atlantic.

      • M_Baker

        I don’t look for reasons, I just state the facts to counter the spin.  If someone wants to avoid the facts over the spin, I’m fine with that.  I also don’t work for anyone, and stand behing and take full responsibility for what I write.  I also try to respond to most people who respond to my comments.  I may however, not respond back to someone who uses childish words and insults as if they don’t have anything of substance to respond back with.  If you can respond with facts to anything I wrote I’ll be happy to read it.  I will also continue to write the facts to counter the spin.  After all, the resent survey they just ran on the readers of this site wanted less spin.

        I also read the article you cited from Joshua Green, along with many other of his other articles.  Overall I thought the tone for the first half of the article was negitive towards Palin, but was positive in the second half.  He gave her credit for ACES, which was a great accomplishment for Sarah and the money it raised for the State.  I also haven’t read anything yet on the increase of the credit rating and the reasons for it.

  • Leslie Eastman

    PRESS ignores OBAMA’s role in downgrade failure and PALIN’s rating success!!!
    FOURTH BRANCH of gov’t WORSE than the other in creating the conditions
    for the CREDIT CHAOS!

  • Mary Oele

    Isn’t it odd how the facts can be right in front of the liberals faces and they still don’t see it?  Alaska isn’t the only state who improved their credit rating.  I think Tim Pawlenty put Minnesota back on track, at least while he was in office, and isn’t it Ohio who is back in the black again?

  • Sue Lynn

    The S&P just got downgraded and SP (Sarah Palin) just got upgraded!!!!

    • wodiej

      just remember every setback for Obama is a step forward for us and Gov. Palin

  • friskyness

    It’s all Obama’s fault!

  • wodiej

    So I guess this is how it goes.  If something goes right, Gov. Palin gets no credit.  If something goes wrong, it’s her fault.  Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.  

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