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April 16, 2014

Show Me Your Budget

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Show me a political flyer in Alaska and I’ll show you a candidate whose only reason for living is supporting the Permanent Fund and education, and fighting “government waste.” There’s an old saying, “Don’t tell me what you value. Show me your budget, and I’ll tell you what you value.” This week we got to see what the Republican majority in the Alaska Senate values. Rest assured, their budget, written by Sen. Pete Kelly, does not value birth control for irresponsible women. In fact, amendments to accept millions in federal funds for family planning — to actually reduce abortions —…

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GOP Leader Threatens Sexual Assault Council

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Speaker of the House Mike Chenault (R-Nikiski) is throwing rape victims under the train to get the governor’s out-of-state buddy on an Alaska gasline board. You’ve got to hand it to him; the lengths to which he will go to demonstrate his lack of common decency are not half-assed. In a state where 37 percent of women report having experienced sexual violence, and where rape statistics are three times the national average, Mike Chenault proves that for those like himself, there are more important things. Like getting the governor’s Texas buddy on the gasline board. The premise of Chenault’s latest legislative…

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Anchorage Muni Voter Guide

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The editors of The Mudflats don’t always agree, but this time we’re unanimous. What we agree upon most of all is that everyone must get out to vote tomorrow, Tuesday, April 1. Local elections are the most important, and least well attended. This one is particularly critical, so no excuses. Here’s your down and dirty voter guide. Anchorage Assembly Races East Side  Adam Trombley vs. Pete Petersen vs. Mao Tosi Trombley has rallied the troops at the Anchorage Tea Party “Day of Resistance,” spent most of his time trying to distance himself from an increasingly unpopular Mayor who hand-selected him…

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Christie is the New Palin

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In Alaska, there have lately been many comparisons of Governor Chris Christie to Alaska ex-half-governor Sarah Palin. To wit: a close circle of micromanaged advisors from whom utter loyalty is demanded; an open abhorrence of the press when they pull outrageous stunts like asking questions; a certain tone deaf quality and tendency to double down when bad behavior is called out; wielding the power of the office in full force political payback; and a complete lack of hesitation to throw anyone and everyone under the bus to save one’s own very thin skin. And come on – the Bridges and…

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DC Dan’s Embryonic Memory

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US Senate hopeful Dan Sullivan (R-OH–>DC–>AK) has decided to boost his nonexistent Alaska cred by campaign-branding the most traumatic event in Anchorage history. In addition to slapping his logo on the Good Friday Quake, Dan pours on the “we remember.” Given that the quake hit our city roughly 8 months before Sullivan’s birth in Ohio, his precocious, in-utero grasp of geological phenomena like the shifting of tectonic plates must have been impressive. The actual Alaskan in the Senate race shows our visitor from Ohio/DC how it’s done: Translation: “There’s no need to explicitly remind you I was born and raised here….

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Social Media Wins & Fails of AK Politicos

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ANCHORAGE, AK— There are two types of Facebook stati: those providing the reader with value of some sort—informational, cautionary, or even just escapist entertainment value—and those benefitting only the writer: appeals for sympathy or money, self-congratulatory piety, boastful one-upsmanship, you know all the flavors. The second type is never in short supply, but here are three examples of effective social media use by public officials which—while of benefit to constituents and the public, indeed for that very reason—will also pay dividends when the candidate makes an ask around campaign time. The Feedback Loop Fairbanks Rep. Scott Kawasaki’s approach highlights an…

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GOP Senator – Birth Control Irresponsible

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I had a plan to write a column that was going to make the Anchorage municipal elections coming up to be the sexiest most riveting thing you’ve ever read. Then someone did something stupid in Juneau, so you’ll have to wait a week while I sort this doofus out. First, the reporting on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders from Kyle Hopkins and Marc Lester for the Anchorage Daily News has been incredible. Disturbing, and incredibly needed. Two percent of children born in Alaska have FASD. We need solutions and education. Sadly, we have a “think tank” formed by Sen. Pete Kelly…

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Don’t Tread On Grammar: Reader Response

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So, a while ago I made this No Pebble flag using art by the inimitable Ray Troll. It’s a riff on the Gadsden flag. Someone didn’t like it too much. I got this in my e-mail.  Which, of course I forwarded to Jeanne. After some grade school corrections from Jeanne, I created this. Remember kids, fund public education.

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Too Many Dans

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In the first of what we hope will be many chuckle-worthy screw ups, the conservative Club for Growth came out with an endorsement recently which was picked up by the Associated Press, and then reported by KTVA Channel 11 News in Anchorage. Somewhere along the line, Dan Sullivan got lost in translation. Dan Sullivan (R-OH->DC->AK) moved to Alaska to become a U.S. Senator. The carpetbagging political climber went from Palin’s second choice Attorney General, to the Commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources (the move that tipped us all off) and has been groomed and guided for quite some time….

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Giessel “Reallocates” Wealth to Donors

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I’m still getting used to seeing the Walter J. Hickel Expressway signs. I still think Wally’s Way would have been better, but it gives me a chance to remember to read “Who Owns America” again. My copy has a brown signature inside. A treasure. So, as I pull onto Wally’s Way, heading south, the voice of Lori Townsend making me feel better about the news on my radio. Seriously. If there’s a meteor bearing down on Earth and we’re all gonna die, she should be the one announcing it-she makes even Alaska news sound better. My phone rings. “Did you…

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