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February 14, 2016

The Comeback Kid: The Revolution Begins in Iowa

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“9 months ago we came to this beautiful state, we had no money, no organization and were taking on the most powerful political organization in America.”  As I write this, Iowa is waiting for the last delegate numbers on the Democratic caucus to come in. Huckabee and O’Malley have closed up shop and gone home, suspending their campaigns. Fiorina didn’t even show up for her own party.  The Donald, is coming in second place with Rubio a close third – Cruz accepting his victory with a speech on killing Muslims. These are weird times to be alive and watching politics….

The Weekend Off – News You Missed

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  Alaska The Economist – Murre mystery – Thousands of seabirds are washing up dead on Alaska’s shores AT THE end of the highway, 200 miles from Anchorage, sits a small fishing and tourism town where, in early January, thousands of dead common murres, or guillemots, were washed ashore. These penguin-like seabirds littered the tidal wracks so densely that beach walkers had to be careful where they stepped. And beyond Homer, tens—probably hundreds—of thousands of these birds have drifted in dead along Alaska’s vast coastline or have been found far inland half-dead in the snow. Bloomberg – U.S. Bans Import of…

Open Thread: Lox Stocks Soar While Oil Tanks

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Alaska is currently in a weird spot. Currently oil is going for less than salmon. I’m sure that these numbers aren’t 100% comparable for AK, but either way it’s a fantastic conversation starter.

The Weekend Off – News You Missed

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Alaska ADN – ADN poll: Alaskans like Trump, Sanders for president An Alaska Dispatch News poll found registered voters in the state have their eyes on two candidates that would have been considered unlikely front-runners just a year ago: real estate billionaire and reality TV star Donald Trump and Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the self-proclaimed democratic socialist. The Guardian – The rise and fall of Sarah Palin: plucked away from Alaska, she lost her soul There was a time when Sarah Palin was normal by Alaska standards. Way back before the hoopla, and way before she endorsed Donald Trump, she…

The Weekend Off – News You Missed

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Alaska The Guardian – Record high Arctic temperatures in 2015 having ‘profound effects’ on region The Arctic experienced record air temperatures and a new low in peak ice extent during 2015, with scientists warning that climate change is having “profound effects” on the entire marine ecosystem and the indigenous communities that rely upon it. Newsminer – Near-hurricane force winds expected near Delta, Alaska Range Two storms packing winds of 50 to 90 mph are aiming for Delta Junction and Alaska Range passes today through mid-week. AP News – Alaska’s Inuit link steady food supply to environment health Alaska Inuit hunter John Goodwin for…

The Weekend Off – News You Missed

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Alaska ADN – Journalist who broke Fairbanks Four case unsatisfied after their release The letters seemed outlandish. But Brian O’Donoghue went to the courthouse to check them out, part of his job in 2000 as the opinion page editor at the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner. What he found wouldn’t let him go: the story of four young men convicted of murder on flimsy evidence. On Thursday, their convictions were vacated and the Fairbanks Four were finally released after 18 years in prison. O’Donoghue joined the celebration but said the job’s not done. Juneau Empire – This is what it takes to get into…

The Weekend Off – News You Missed

A small herd of bison block the road in the early morning. Taken somewhere on the Alaska Highway between Watson Lake and Fort Nelson.

Alaska MSN – Powerful Alaska Storm to Rival Strongest on Record A potent storm that will cross the Aleutian Islands of Alaska this weekend could become the strongest recorded storm to impact the region. Audubon – The Inside Story of Shell’s Arctic Assault A months-long investigation shows how the energy giant pressured the Interior Department during the company’s gung-ho Arctic push—and got most of what it wanted (except oil). ADN – Fairbanks couple’s Internet-controlled Christmas lights are back (even I need some light hearted news now and then) For six years, Ken and Rebecca-Ellen Woods have set up Christmas lights at their home in…

Bird of the Week – Wilson’s Snipe

Wilson's Snipe, Tanana Lakes, Fairbanks

Any guy who ever went to camp likely went on a Snipe Hunt. For those who never did, it’s a mild form of hazing, involving pillow cases, expeditions in the dark and getting left in the woods to feel foolish. So it may comes as surprise to learn there is such a thing as a snipe. Specifically, Wilson’s Snipe. This is a bird that is heard much more often than it is seen. Snipe courtship involves “winnowing,” a spectacular courtship flight, during which individuals produce a haunting, tremulous sound (the winnow) with their outspread outer tail-feathers. It is “produced by airflow…

Bird of the Week – Black Oystercatcher

Black Oystercatcher, Kachemak Bay, Alaska

About 15 years ago now, WC was in Valdez to start a Birdathon – in fact, a record-making Birdathon – when he encountered a drunken fisherman on the docks of the small boat harbor in Valdez, Alaska. The guy saw the binoculars and was able to conclude we were birders. “Yeah,” he slurred, “We just saw a Double-crested Oystercracker.” Which was probably a Black Oystercatcher. That’s a bird bill to remember, WC thinks you will agree. This is a true shorebird, spending its entire life along the rocky shores of the Pacific Ocean, found from the Aleutian Islands to Baja…

Sarah Palin, Speaking American, and Donald Trump

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Authors note: Since every other blog and news site on the planet has commented on this, I felt that the Mudflats should share in at least some of those clicks. Because let’s be honest here, the only reason any of us are covering her at this point is for the traffic; she doesn’t have the influence to really  justify it. So with that statement out of the way, enjoy the slow moving train wreck. You’re reading this because, like me… you quietly hate yourself. But look at it this way; you didn’t have to transcribe 15 minutes of Palin-Speak.  There seems to be two out…