In the confines of Newgate we seldom concern ourselves with goings-on in the far-flung colonies, but we are moved to comment this week on the arrest of a certain Sherry Johnston on drugs charges. Sherry is the mother of Levi Johnston, who is, you will recall, about to enter the state of holy matrimony with a certain Bristol Palin.
This upstanding young gentleman, who in his MySpace profile charmingly describes himself as a 'f***ing redneck', has had his own brush with the law after a youthful poaching exploit; this year, he found himself at the heart of a national scandal. The shock revelation of Bristol's state - forced on the family by media speculation about the parentage of young Trig - meant a damage limitation package involving happy plans for the future wedding which may have come as something of a surprise to the Johnston family.
It would be churlish to suggest that the 18-year-old, who says he doesn't want kids, found himself staring up the barrel of a metaphorical shotgun wielded by his future mother-in-law (whose unerring marksmanship is a matter of public record), but whatever the exact details of the case, it can scarcely be doubted that Ms Johnston has been under a certain amount of pressure over the past few months.
Once living in comfortable obscurity in Wasilla (pop.6,715), she has had her son's sex life and MySpace pages made a matter of public record (sample quote; 'You f**k with me and I'll kick [your] ass') and is about to see him led as a sacrificial lamb to the altar of Republican respectability. Now, in the ultimate humiliation, her arrest is reported throughout the world as 'Sarah Palin's in-law on drug charges'. Even when she breaks the law, they have to bring that woman into it.
And all over the US tonight political satirists are sighing into their beer over what might have been.
YPP London meet-up, Friday 22 June
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