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October 9, 2015

I had the unfortunate experience a couple weeks ago to listen to Representative Don Young call in to the Rick Rydell radio show on KENI. While most of the conversation was expected, one of his comments really got my attention. Young promised that the House of Representatives would not be shutting down the government.

I had the unfortunate experience a couple weeks ago to listen to Representative Don Young call in to the Rick Rydell radio show on KENI. While most of the conversation was expected, one of his comments really got my attention. Young promised that the House of Representatives would not be shutting down the government.

August 26, 2015

Fish counts on the Kenai for the second run of red salmon are particularly important for all user groups in Cook Inlet, unfortunately the resource appears to be managed so as to maximize the number of red salmon in the nets of the 1,404 commercial fishermen making up the drift fleet in the Inlet.

August 11, 2015

While the rest of the state is out chasing salmon and filling freezers, former Backbone member Bill Walker is busily “nationalizing” natural gas utilities here in Alaska, reversing a decades old move to privatization that has all but solved recent Railbelt natural gas shortages.

While the rest of the state is out chasing salmon and filling freezers, former Backbone member Bill Walker is busily “nationalizing” natural gas utilities here in Alaska, reversing a decades old move to privatization that has all but solved recent Railbelt natural gas shortages.

July 14, 2015

Interesting confluence of economics and jobs news over the last week here in Alaska. First there was the news that the red return into Bristol Bay may be only half what was expected. Late last week, the Army announced that they would be cutting some 2,600 troops at join Base Elmendorf – Richardson (JBER). Cue the expected wailing, lamentations, and rending of garments.

Interesting confluence of economics and jobs news over the last week here in Alaska. First there was the news that the red return into Bristol Bay may be only half what was expected. Late last week, the Army announced that they would be cutting some 2,600 troops at join Base Elmendorf – Richardson (JBER). Cue the expected wailing, lamentations, and rending of garments.

June 11, 2015

The running gag in the movie Up was someone shouting “squirrel” and the dogs instantly dropping what they were doing and running off in chasing it.   Budget wars in recent weeks has put Alaska is in much the same position, chasing squirrels while ignoring the single most important task of increasing flow through the pipeline.
 

The running gag in the movie Up was someone shouting “squirrel” and the dogs instantly dropping what they were doing and running off in search of the squirrel.

June 7, 2015

There are events with significant environmental impact that take place from time to time. They are all natural and generally not predictable. The more energy we spend lighting our hair on fire, running around waving our arms and whining about things with no demonstrable environmental impact, the less we will have available when something real, serious, and devastating happens.

May 10, 2015

Had the opportunity to listen to a budget presentation on the State of Alaska budget wars by Jeff Jessee, CEO of the Alaska Mental Health Trust. It had about the content and tone that we have come to expect during the current budget wars, but it did set me to thinking (usually a painful process) about who pays for what around here.

Had the opportunity to listen to a budget presentation on the State of Alaska budget wars by Jeff Jessee, CEO of the Alaska Mental Health Trust. It had about the content and tone that we have come to expect during the current budget wars, but it did set me to thinking (usually a painful process) about who pays for what around here.

April 16, 2015

Albert Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing time after time and expecting different results. We see that once again with Senator Bill Wielechowski’s (D, IBEW) op-ed over the weekend decrying senate budget cuts as somehow being against Alaskan values.

Albert Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing time after time and expecting different results. We see that once again with Senator Bill Wielechowski’s (D, IBEW) op-ed over the weekend decrying senate budget cuts as somehow being against Alaskan values.

March 24, 2015

We finally have a moderately rational argument in favor of the water reservation file for Middle Creek, a tributary of the Chuit River 45 miles west of Anchorage.

March 9, 2015

Alice Rogoff’s fish wrapper decided late last week their axis of attack on the Republican majority in the legislature was to go after conservatives, particularly those with some connection to mining on vague claims of conflict of interest.

Alice Rogoff’s fish wrapper decided late last week their axis of attack on the Republican majority in the legislature was to go after conservatives, particularly those with some connection to mining on vague claims of conflict of interest.

March 4, 2015

The latest trick used by the anti-development, anti-resource extraction, and anti-job crowd is the use of exclusive water rights as a vehicle to shut down projects. The current example is the Chuit River west of Anchorage where PacRim Coal wants to build a coal mine.

The latest trick used by the anti-development, anti-resource extraction, and anti-job crowd is the use of exclusive water rights as a vehicle to shut down projects. The current example is the Chuit River west of Anchorage where PacRim Coal wants to build a coal mine. http://www.chuitnacoalproject.com/

February 13, 2015

Representative Harriet Drummond (D, ANC) introduced legislation last week to allow physician assisted suicide here in Alaska. She calls it Death with Dignity and dresses it up in all the usual leftist claptrap about choice.

Representative Harriet Drummond (D, ANC) introduced legislation last week to allow physician assisted suicide here in Alaska. She calls it Death with Dignity and dresses it up in all the usual leftist claptrap about choice. http://www.ktoo.org/2015/02/11/rep-drummond-says-death-dignity-not-suicide/

February 13, 2015

I always find it interesting to look at the foundation documents justifying any expansion of state power, authority and welfare. The Healthy Alaska Plan for Medicaid makes some very interesting reading and raises many questions.

The Walker administration Friday, February 6 floated their first justification for Medicaid expansion here in Alaska. The announcement was accompanied by a pair of documents, one by a consultant and one by the State. You can find the documents here. http://dhss.alaska.gov/HealthyAlaska/Documents/Evergreen_Medicaid_Expans...

February 8, 2015

The first slice of Walker proposed budget cutting goes after the elderly, corrections and state employees as early targets. The budget proposes cutting some 250 jobs (329 total positions), and cuts some $240 million out of a $3.5 billion budget deficit, or a whopping 7% of the deficit. whoopee.

The first slice of Walker proposed budget cutting goes after the elderly, corrections and state employees as early targets. The budget proposes cutting some 250 jobs (329 total positions), and cuts some $240 million out of a $3.5 billion budget deficit, or a whopping 7% of the deficit. whoopee. http://www.adn.com/article/20150205/walker-releases-proposed-state-budge...

January 28, 2015

With his action over the weekend on ANWR, President Obama announced that he has morphed from lame duck into troll, with Alaska as his first target. My experience with trolls is that he wants the appropriate thundering response from Alaskans and its elected leadership, while he moves on to the next target.

The Wiki defines an Internet Troll as:

January 16, 2015

It is always fun to speculate what comes next in the political world. Today’s episode concerns former US Senator Mark Begich and what he is going to do next.

It is always fun to speculate what comes next in the political world. Today’s episode concerns former US Senator Mark Begich and what he is going to do next.

January 11, 2015

Perhaps the new budget wars give us here in Alaska the opportunity to start deconstructing the education blob and replacing it with something more responsive to the needs of the parents, students and the working world our children (and ourselves) are having to deal with.

The budget wars have been joined with the new administration gleefully cancelling infrastructure projects regardless of cost and regardless of positive future economic impact.

December 31, 2014

Governor Bill Walker issued an administrative order Friday, December 26, 2014 directing all state agencies to stop non-obligated spending on the following six projects: the Ambler Road, Juneau Access Road, Watana Dam, Kodiak Launch Project, Knik Arm Crossing, and the Alaska Stand-Alone Pipeline Project.

December 19, 2014

One of the refrains we hear from the Walker-ites and on the talk shows these days is that the fiscal crunch puts “everything on the table.” I would submit that everything is most certainly not on the table, as decisions by the new Walker administration will be driven by their worldview and prejudices just like those before they came into town.

With the crash in the per barrel price of oil to the $60/bbl range, we here in Alaska are faced with the latest round of fiscal crises. That level is about half the per barrel forecast that former Governor Parnell’s budget was based upon.

November 11, 2014

Interesting election here in Alaska. All four of the democrat sponsored ballot initiatives passed. Three required a yes vote. One required a no vote. Unfortunately for the democrats, the positive outcomes on the initiatives did not drag their candidates across the finish line with them for the most part.

Interesting election here in Alaska. All four of the democrat sponsored ballot initiatives passed. Three required a yes vote. One required a no vote. Unfortunately for the democrats, the positive outcomes on the initiatives did not drag their candidates across the finish line with them for the most part.

November 3, 2014

Unlike bureaucracy the capital formation process necessary to both private and public endeavor is similar to walking a tightrope with no net. There is only ruin if the endeavor is not successful.

Unlike bureaucracy the capital formation process necessary to both private and public endeavor is similar to walking a tightrope with no net. There is only ruin if the endeavor is not successful.

October 23, 2014

Democrat candidate Bill Walker had himself a most interesting week this last one. Not only did he take mutually exclusive positions on budget cutting, but he covered up his own campaign incompetence with some good old Messenger Shooting.

Democrat candidate Bill Walker had himself a most interesting week this last one. Not only did he take mutually exclusive positions on budget cutting, but he covered up his own campaign incompetence with some good old Messenger Shooting.

First the budget festivities.

October 18, 2014

Democrats found themselves quite a candidate to run for House District 13 in East Anchorage. Laurie Hummel is a 30-year Army Colonel who is painting herself as the very picture of fiscal restraint. She claims to be running because the last Legislature and LeDoux in particular simply spent too much money.

Democrats found themselves quite a candidate to run for House District 13 in East Anchorage. Laurie Hummel is a 30-year Army Colonel who is painting herself as the very picture of fiscal restraint. She claims to be running because the last Legislature and LeDoux in particular simply spent too much money.

October 2, 2014

Young Alaskans voting for the minimum wage act a lot like chickens voting for Colonel Sanders, as they are going to get a most unpleasant surprise in the days, weeks, months and years to follow their vote in support of this initiative.

Why would a national, very well-funded union-backed outfit based in Washington DC calling itself Working America be advertising campaign jobs to “Fight to raise the minimum wage” here in Anchorage? I found out about this one via a glossy color printed insert in the printed Alaska Dispatch News a few weeks ago.

September 16, 2014

Interesting that state and national democrats have determined that conducting a war on mining via campaign ads, particularly targeting the proposed Pebble Mine is their ticket to electoral success this year.