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June 13, 2021


Oyster Roundup!

~Thick and fast they came at last, and more, and more, and more!

Derby Day!

That’s right. Today with your plate of tasty oyster news nuggets, you can also enjoy a mint julep. (pause while that sinks in) OK, maybe not the best combination, but you understand my metaphorical drift. It should be an interesting race today. There are 19 horses in this year’s race, and there’s a great summary in the Wall Street Journal (linked above) for those of you looking for a quick primer.

It’s been a long, strange trail to the 137th Kentucky Derby, which gets underway Saturday (6:24 on NBC). The prep races have seen upset after upset. Several strong contenders have dropped out, and on Friday, last year’s two-year-old champ Uncle Mo was scratched with a gastrointestinal infection. The rains, intense as they’ve been, may still return.

Since there’s no easy, clear favorite, this is the sort of year that those of us who consider ourselves once-a-year railbirds need to do some actual research. If you’re not careful, this can become a life-warping vortex of hours vaporized on the Internet.

Who is your favorite? The evocative Midnight Interlude, the unfortunately named Archarcharch (my cat used to make that sound before depositing a present on the rug), the testosterone-laden favorite Mucho Macho Man? It will come as no surprise to long time Mudflatters, that I will be hoisting my libation in a toast to…. (you know it’s coming)… Pants on Fire. I shall think of it as an homage, not to the ex-half-gov herself, but to those who have called out her flaming pants. (And yes, I still have the old graphic that I dusted off just for this occasion)

Can I have an ‘Amen?’

Minnesota Representative Steve Simon says a proposed state constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage is largely about religion. He says if sexual orientation is innate as science is showing us, and not a lifestyle choice, then to use the religious argument, God created gay people. An absolutely powerful and compelling statement, directed at those who need to hear it. The whole clip is three minutes, and well worth watching. Some highlights are transcribed below.

He quotes a member of the clergy who spoke in front of the legislature the previous week.

Simon: [The member of the clergy] said “Sexuality and sexual orientation are a gift from God,” and I think that’s true. I think the scientific evidence shows more and more every day that sexuality and sexual orientation are innate, and something that people are born with. And I would ask everyone on this committee – not today, not tomorrow, not next week, not even this year – but in a moment when you can be alone with your own thoughts, to ask yourself if that’s true, if it’s even possibly true, what does that mean to the moral force of your argument?

… if it’s true that sexual orientation is innate, God-given, what does it mean to the moral force of your argument. And I guess, to put it in the vernacular what I would ask is – how many more gay people does God have to create before we ask ourselves whether or not God actually wants them around?


Shame on Yoo

The Oregonian covered the appearance of keynote speaker John Yoo at the Annual Bar Association dinner in Fairbanks this week. Yoo wrote the controversial 2002 memos justifying torture, or “enhanced interrogation” including waterboarding.

About 20 Alaska attorneys walked out the Annual Bar Association awards dinner before former Bush administration attorney John Yoo spoke Thursday. But at least 140 others stayed to hear a rather tame history lesson on the use of presidential power. (link above for more)

The same event was covered by the Fairbanks Daily News Miner with a slightly different slant.

Some Alaska lawyers threatened to boycott the Alaska Bar Association convention in Fairbanks this year, saying the bar was endorsing torture with its choice of a keynote speaker.  But when “torture memo” writer John Yoo gave his address Thursday night, there were few empty seats at the banquet tables on the floor of the Carlson Center, and only three protesters stood outside the building.

h/t Linda Kellen Biegel

Say NO to Bear Baiting and Snaring

In a 900-square mile area of Game Management Unit 16B, the Alaska Board of Game has authorized baiting and snaring of both brown and black bears in an effort to boost moose populations, primarily for urban and non-resident trophy hunters.  Regional Fish & Game supervisor Bruce Dale calls the program “an adaptive experiment.”

Here’s what this “experiment” actually entails: Using a bucket snare, a bear will be caught by its paw when it reaches in for the bait. Upon trying to remove its paw, it will find itself caught in a tightening loop of metal cable. Depending on how the snare is set, the bear may literally hang by its leg until the trapper arrives in as many as 3 days (IF he follows regulations), at which time the bear and any cubs with it will be killed. A bear trapped in such a manner sometimes chews its foot off.

This “experiment” seems designed to see how much atrocity the Board of Game can commit before public outrage arises. In 2004, wolf reduction efforts began in 16B; in 2007, bear regulations were liberalized in 16B; in 2009, a black bear baiting/snaring program was authorized. Now brown bears have been added to the program. Meanwhile, urban and non-resident trophy hunting in 16B continues.

Help put a stop to these senseless practices before they become accepted methods of doing business. Sign this petition to tell Alaska’s Governor Parnell, Fish & Game Commissioner Cora Campbell, and Board of Game Chair Cliff Judkins that you will not put up with baiting and snaring Alaska’s bears!

And when you’ve done that, write a letter to the editor and tell them what you think. Are you considering traveling to Alaska? How does this make you feel. Do you already live here? Is this the face of Alaska you are proud of? Please speak up for those who cannot speak, yet can and do suffer in a very real way for the greed of others.



8 Responses to “Oyster Roundup!”
  1. Zyxomma says:

    Petition signed. This is a disgusting practice, and I’m sure it fills all reasonable Alaskans with anger and shame.

  2. mike from iowa says:

    Guv Piysh(Bibby) Jindal is an anchor baby,born to immigrant parents with green cards. His mother has Masters Degrees in Physics and Nukular Engineering,and yet works in the state guv..for her son. Must pay real well in Looseyanna gov’t.

  3. Kath the Scrappy says:

    Hey All, at Firedog Lake they were having a review and Q&A this afternoon with Geoffrey Dunn about his new book. Fascinating!

    FDL Book Salon Welcomes Geoffrey Dunn, The Lies of Sarah Palin: The Untold Story Behind Her Relentless Quest for Power

  4. beaglemom says:

    John Yoo and other Bush Administration employees who opined in favor of torture all should have been disbarred.

  5. leenie17 says:

    I think the Board of Game needs to change its name to something more accurate.

    “Board of Cruel and Inhumane Animal Mutilation and Death for Profit”, perhaps?

  6. tallimat says:

    Bear baiting sucks.
    There has got to be a better way.
    It will be interesting to see how the state keeps track of thier experiment.
    Hummm, will they get creative with thier “kill count” for baited bears and moose population numbers?
    Ug. I like my moose, but am soooo weary of the abundance management our state practices. Er, caters too. Subsistence, rural subsistence isn’t a priority in this case…

  7. vyccan says:

    I was impressed by the demeanour, and words, of Rep. Steve Simon. It is to be hoped that his hearers not only heard him, but that they will think about his words.

  8. merrycricket says:

    The name of the jockey riding Pants On Fire is Rosey (as in riveter maybe?) If they win, she will be the first Female to do so.

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