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May 18, 2021

Alaska Republicans Say the Darndest Things

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy Disaster NEVER LET A GOOD DISASTER GO TO WASTE That’s the hallmark of Republican politics. Remember the Patriot Act that got shoved through during the immediate aftermath of 9/11 – chock-full of provisions to trample civil liberties and violate the Constitution? It was basically ready to go, and waiting for an opportunity. Well, don’t think that COVID-19 isn’t going to have its own set of nefarious legislation that gets implemented during these days of crisis when people are looking the other way. We’ve already seen public money dumped into funding the private…

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When it’s quiet in Juneau…

Any parent of a toddler knows that feeling when you’re going about your business, and suddenly you realize… it’s been quiet for a while. Welcome to this week. We’re in between special sessions 2 and 3 (TBA) and a hush has fallen. Enjoy the quiet because pretty soon we’re going to discover WHY. TAKING IT TO THE PEOPLE Since deciding that the press is mean and fake (wonder where he came up with THAT?) Dunleavy has decided that he’s now going to just deliver the real news to the people directly from the government. That’s how it’s supposed to work…

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You Can’t Fire a Fetus & Other Lessons from the Alaska Legislature

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy/Babcock administration It’s been a week since the marathon joint session convened and voted on Governor Mike Dunleavy’s appointees to boards and commissions – and there have been a few developments with some of the rejected nominees. “EAGLEXIT” First, there was Mike Tovaliero. He was the one rejected from the Board of Realtors for several reasons including: his seeming lack of understanding of which board he was nominated for;  his losing interview strategy of being belligerent to legislators and not forthcoming when asked questions; and his problematic Twitter feed which featured both original…

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Governor’s Appointments – Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy/Babcock administration The Governor’s appointments and how they went down   THUMBS UP/THUMBS DOWN Well, that was a whopper. The governor’s appointees to commissioner positions and to boards and commissions were up for confirmation yesterday, and the joint floor session with members of the House and Senate took 7 hours and 48 minutes to wind up. At the end, all of the governor’s picks for Commissioner positions (even the most controversial) were passed with a majority of votes, but 6 appointees to the many boards and commissions in the state were rejected. And…

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Environmental Skulduggery is Afoot in Alaska

TALL TALES from Juneau… and BEYOND!   PANTS ON FIRE! Reports are coming from far and wide that the new Senate Majority response to Alaskans who suggest revamping our oil tax credit structure is more or less this: “Oh, we got rid of oil tax credits. They’re gone. They don’t exist anymore. So… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Don’t know what you’re talking about!” Sorry, we call moose nuggets on that one. If anyone tries to flim-flam you with the “we don’t do that anymore” nonsense, here’s the deal. Cathy Giessel, Lora Reinbold, Shelley Hughes and others are regurgitating a bizarre talking point, and…

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Ghosts in the Political Machine. No, really. Ghosts!

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Babcock/Arduin/Dunleavy administration Subscribe to TALL TALES here   HOORAY! YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE GAY… Kelly Tshibaka, Gov. Dunleavy’s replacement pick for Commissioner of Administration (after first pick, Jonathan Quick, the “yogurt entrepreneur” was found to be lying on his resume) is certainly qualified for the job on paper. Nevertheless, she has some ideological issues which ought to raise serious concerns for someone wanting a position overseeing a very large and diverse government workforce. In 2002, Tshibaka (under her maiden name Kelly Hartline) wrote the following in the Harvard Law Record about “National…

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Oh no they didn’t… the week in gaffes, goofs and OMGs

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Babcock/Arduin/Dunleavy administration Oh yes, they DID.   It’s been a week of face-palm inducing, cringe-worthy, jaw-dropping gaffes and goofs in Juneau and beyond. It’s hard to know where to begin. So, we may as well start with the “beyond Juneau” part.   SEN. DAN SULLIVAN The Senate Armed Services Committee recently questioned top generals on President Trump’s “national emergency” declaration along the U.S.-Mexico border. Sen. Dan Sullivan was unsurprisingly supportive of the national emergency. To justify this support, he asked U.S. Northern Command General Terrence O’Shaughnessy how many Americans were killed by opioid…

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Anchorage Bans Plastic Bags

It’s been a process, let’s just say, as these things normally are. Should we ban those hideous one-use plastic grocery bags that end up clogging storm drains, wreaking havoc with water treatment facilities, getting stuck in trees and bushes, blowing across the road, and ending up in waterways and the ocean where they break down into the dreaded “microplastic” particles that get into the fish, and eventually us? Or should we just ban the really thin ones but not the medium ones or the thick ones? Or should we ban the thin, AND the medium? And on the public testimony…

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Plastic Bag Ban on the Horizon for Anchorage?

One word: #PlasticBagBan That’s what residents came to testify about at last night’s Anchorage Assembly meeting. Many communities in Alaska have already banned plastic bags including Wasilla, Palmer, Emmonak and several other rural villages. Now it’s Anchorage’s turn to decide. My hunch? We’ll all be doing THIS fairly soon, and good. In 1998 a voter initiative on the ballot to ban billboards read: The bill states findings and intent that Alaska be forever free of billboards. It defines billboards as any signs or forms of outdoor advertising not allowed by law. The bill also repeals a law recently passed by…

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Neo-Nazi Flees Arrest, Declares Run for Senate

A man wanted for entering The Church of Love in the Anchorage neighborhood of Spenard and unloading a can of bear mace on a group of peace activists is now officially identified, arrested without incident, and in police custody.  Bret Maness, an avowed white supremacist, has been charged with fourteen counts including a first-degree felony charge of making a terroristic threat, a second-degree burglary charge, 11 counts of fourth-degree assault, and one count of reckless endangerment. The call to the community went out via Nixle alert on Thursday morning at 8:30 stating that the public had been instrumental in identifying Maness…

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