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September 19, 2021

Alaska for Sale

~State Senator Lesil McGuire

You know how some things that are technically legal still smell funny? Well, there’s something in the air right now.

This week, Sen. Lesil McGuire glowed as she introduced the newly formed “magical challenger slush fund” for Gov. Sean Parnell at the Petroleum Club. Her word-salad about being a backbone herself for the Republican Party, and the Senate bipartisan working group needing more GOP in it, was, well, Palinesque.

As someone who supports the “grown-ups” in Juneau, it was disappointing to see Sen. McGuire show up with her hand out to a governor whose oil tax policy she correctly called “half-baked” just a few months ago.

So, why the slush fund? Well, Gov. Parnell doesn’t like being challenged by another branch of government. He really, really doesn’t like it. He’s bumping his head on the system of checks and balances. He’s even resorted to name-calling in his attempt to shape a rubber-stamp Senate.

It seems unAlaskan that a governor would bundle lobbyists’ money to take on lawmakers, including some from his own party, who are standing up for Alaska.

Alaska is fairly young, so we haven’t thought to make laws for everything an ethically challenged governor might try. (Where’s that to-do list?)

On the other hand, the law does say the governor can’t raise money if there’s any quid pro quo.

Who would benefit if the bipartisan Senate majority is destroyed? It’s not a secret that the governor’s proposed $2 billion a year gift to the oil companies was a point of contention with the Senate — some senators wanted Alaska to actually get something before we started throwing money at the companies.

This week, ConocoPhillips announced its second-quarter earnings. Get ready to call the waambulance. Contrary to its pleas for more tax breaks, threats of breaking up with us and making us all worry we’d need a bake sale to keep its lights on, the numbers indicate otherwise.

From its SEC filings (read: under oath):

Its Alaska investments made $551 million in three months — or $7 million a day. We’re barraged about how great things are in the Lower 48. For all the money CP is investing in Texas, North Dakota and Montana, those states contributed only $104 million, a fifth of what Alaska delivered.

Here’s the kicker: Conoco made $28.16 per barrel profit in Alaska — about the same as in Q1 ($28.66). In the Lower 48, the company made $2.97 a barrel — less than half its profit in Q1 ($6.07). And that’s profit, so it already includes the expense of doing business in Alaska. Clearly, we’re 9 1/2 times a better investment per barrel produced.

So why aren’t the oil companies investing and producing more oil here? Could it be the governor and the House have as their mantra, “Alaska is closed for business”? If you went to Nordstrom’s to buy a thousand-dollar suit and the salesman told you it would be half-price in a month, wouldn’t you wait?

Which brings me back to the quid pro quo. Who would give thousands of dollars to the governor’s slush fund if he wasn’t getting something back? You have to believe people lined up with their checkbooks because they have nothing better to do with their money and want absolutely nothing in return.

All state employees, including the governor, are forbidden from “partisan political purposes,” including this fund, while on Alaska’s clock. How is the governor able to have such a fund, even with the state GOP holding the bag of money? Isn’t the governor always the governor? If he’s having a fundraiser and there’s a state emergency, do they not break into the party because he’s not on state time or dime? Heck no. This fund is to benefit the governor’s political agenda, which I would argue is precisely opposite of the best interest of Alaska.

We have to decide if we’re for sale, Alaska. If the governor has his way, get ready for the odor of low tide and the familiar stink of corrupt bastards.

This election may well decide whether we finally switch from an Owner State to an Owned State.

 

Comments

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Comments
12 Responses to “Alaska for Sale”
  1. Jag24 says:

    She looks like hell! Marriage and too much plastic surgery don’t go well with her, do they?

    Rules and laws don’t apply to Lesil, do they? She can do whatever she wants unless someone stops her. Maybe she will be Alaska’s next female governor.

  2. COalmostNative says:

    I thought she resembles either Cruella de Ville, or Snow White’s mother…

    OT also: finally! I can get Mudflats again! All weekend it disappeared into murky underworld of the ‘Net šŸ˜‰

  3. Sourdough Mullet says:

    O.T, but Yikesers! Lesil’s even starting to look a bit like Sarah Palin.
    Are they BOTH on the “Lose 5 lbs. a Day / Age 5 Years Amphetamine Diet Plan?

    • COalmostNative says:

      I thought she resembles either Cruella de Ville, or Snow White’s mother…

      OT also: finally! I can get Mudflats again! All weekend it disappeared into murky underworld of the ‘Net.

    • Zyxomma says:

      Love the “lose 5 pounds/age 5 years tweakers’ diet plan.” That might go some way toward explaining her “thought” process, also, too.

    • Snickering says:

      Ol’ Tom dodged a bullet with this one. At least he didn’t return home to that. “Good morn-AHHHHHH!”

  4. Alaska Pi says:

    Jeez.
    This has been ticking me off- from the McGuire I-was-for-it-even-though-I-said-I-was-agin-it-though-I, blah, blah, blah routine to the Guv being the slush fund to get rid of Leggies who take their constituencies seriously watcher-over-er dude garbage.
    We have 3 distinct arms of government, each of which has a particular job. While the Leg may be in sync with a particular Governor that is not the Leg’s job overall.
    Our Constitution gives a lot of power to our Governors- enough to put them in the top third of powers states confer on their Governors across the country. That is enough- we do not need this yahoo co-opting the Legislature too. This end run round a very sensible bipartisan coalition stinks to high heaven.
    Sure hoping enough voting Alaskans get a whiff before they mark their ballots.
    And Pfft! on Ms McGuire’s obvious obsequeious obeisance to “the party”.Double Pffftt! even.

  5. mike from iowa says:

    Thanks for the ammo to use against rwnj in embarrisingly over red,rwnj Northwest Ioway,Shannyn. The Sioux City Journal online allows us non-red staters equal Steve King bashing opportunities every day and I am certainly gonna blast the 1% loving cowards with facts and figures about them poor oil companies. They asked who I was rooting for in the Olympics and I proudly told them I was cheering for Ann Romney’s tax advantaged nag in an equestrian event with a French name I can’t pronounce. I,mike from iowa,never pass up cheap shot opportunities when they are gift wrapped.

  6. juneaudream says:

    The ..’my generation cousins’ have..walked on..who were movers and stock holders..in Phillips, now CP. Their sons..had one visit with moi..and left..shaken..never to be heard from again. They had hoped I would help..move a third gen. daughter..to the Right. I spoke for..her choices..and wit..and said they were wrong..to try and cage her. They were them, she was..fighting to be..Herself. Powerful men..really cannot abide a female with both beauty and brains. It had better be one, or..the other. So with Alaska..pretty-things..fluttering moth-like..around the male powerlights..are always..clogging up the works. Alaska needs a good strong..buglight. Methinks there are not yet enough ..thinking folks..to bring-to-bear..the educated views..needed for a healthy Alaska. Is low tide coming atcha all? Oh..you-betcha. Paint some clothes pins in the pristine colors of your beautiful state..and wear them on..your clothing..see if the ..general population manages to notice, think..and..connect the disgusting smell..of political scat.

    • All I Saw says:

      Excellent summary of Alaskan politics, especially “Alaska pretty-things fluttering moth-like around the male powerlights are always clogging up the works.”

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