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September 20, 2021

Meet Your Republican Candidates, & Bring the Popcorn

It’s hard to know where to begin these days, but let’s start with something nasty that’s brewing which will directly affect the policy positions of Republican candidates, and tells us exactly what to expect if Republicans manage to take back the majority in the State House this November. HINT: It’s going to look a lot like the horrific beginning of last session only there won’t be anyone to stop it. WHAT AR THEY DUIN? A strained pun is about the best you can get out of the absolute fiscal disaster the Republican Party is cooking up. Remember when Tuckerman Babcock,…

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Alaska Politicians Exposed – Stooges, Shills & Shenanigans

TALL TALES from Juneau and the DC Debacle   AND IT’S ALLLL ON TAPE Sometimes you know things, but it’s nice to have them proven right out loud, through dramatic and surreptitious means. Such is the case with the immediately infamous “Pebble tapes.” If you haven’t heard them, make yourself a beverage and get ready to be a fly on the wall as your beautiful state and all its salmon get sold down the river (not the beautiful blue Nushagak of today – the contaminated, cyanide-filled Nushagak of tomorrow). We now know what our elected Republican leadership thinks of us,…

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The ‘Law & Order’ Party Cheers AK Law Breakers

OH REEEEALLLLY… So, it seems that Don “I call it the beer virus” Young is perfectly happy to wear a mask in the White House for a photo op, just not in his own state to protect his constituents. Here he is at the elbow of the Maskless One, at the now famous bill signing where the President referred to Yosemite National Park as “Yo Semites.” The bill was signed in the hope that it might help the beleaguered candidacies of Republican Senators Cory Gardner of Colorado and Steve Daines of Montana. No Democrats were invited to the signing of…

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The Anti-Greta, Climate Change & the Alaska Senate Race

By Zachary Brown She stood in the roiling crowd, amid clean-cut college kids and potbellied dudes in cowboy hats and media men dashing this way and that. Her stringy blonde hair, her dark eyeliner, her sneakers and the flannel tied round her waist, all gave a picture of punk defiance. How ironic, I thought, given the suit-wearing merchants of the status quo she represents. They chose someone small and thin as a garter snake for their enormous, dreadful task. Meet Naomi Seibt: the anti-Greta. The GOP needed an answer to Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teenager who has gained astonishing traction…

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Juneau in the Time of Coronavirus

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy Disaster Despite the slow-down in activity across the state, things have been hopping in Juneau. And as usual, most of the activity centers around the budget, the PFD, supplemental funding, and what to do with the limited funds we have. We’re cleaning up after a summer of natural disaster, and heading into an uncertain future of pandemic. And floor sessions in the House are the same old bare-knuckle fight we’ve become used to. This is because the minority wants you to know something. They want you to know that they really really…

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The Chosen One, the Unchosen One, and the Recall

TALL TALES from Juneau Eyes on the Dunleavy Disaster THE CHOSEN ONE The unexpected passing of Senator Chris Birch (R-Anchorage) on August 8 left a vacancy in the Alaska State Senate. Literally the next day, one of the Reps in his district, Laddie Shaw (R-Anchorage) was already vying for the seat stating it would be “an honor” to continue the work that Birch began. Only one problem, Shaw and Birch were on opposite sides of “the work.” Birch was an industry guy, and a moderate Republican who showed up in Juneau to do his job during the infamous special session…

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Hey… Where’s this thing going?

Hey… Where is this thing going? As several journalists have pointed out – August is supposed to be a slow news month. But like many other things in Alaska, that’s been turned on its head. The Dunleavy steamroller is juiced up and going full speed. And so is the recall effort. Almost 40,000 signatures have been gathered so far in the first phase of the recall which will draw to a close on September 2. Phase 2 will come after the application is approved, and will require over 70,000 signatures (which looks extremely do-able at this point), and then after…

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Public comment deadline looms; Pebble opponents vow to fight illegal permit application

As people prepare to submit their public comments on the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Draft Environmental Impact Statement on the proposed Pebble Mine, before the final deadline this Monday, July first, Bristol Bay defenders are dissecting permitting documents and past statements in search of legal grounds and legislative options to derail the Trump administration’s rush to ram through permits for the proposed mine. Describing the Pebble Partnership’s current application for federal permits, Joel Reynolds said, “To avoid public focus on the scale of the harm that they are going to cause to the world’s greatest wild salmon ecosystem, they…

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Alaska Mining Project Threatens Salmon, Water, and Native Communities

Trump Administration officials have fast-tracked permits for the largest open-pit mine in North America. The proposed Pebble Mine had previously seemed paralyzed, after more than a decade of relentless opposition by Alaska Native elders and youth. Now, plans for the mine are being rushed forward. The final public comment period for the proposed U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) permits ends on June 29, 2019. Under the Obama administration, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) wrote that it would result in a “complete loss of fish habitat” (PDF) in a proposed determination to block Pebble Mine. The mine is planned to…

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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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