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June 21, 2021

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Critical Oil Tax Debate Wednesday!

As we wind up to the primary and general election, Alaska Common Ground is sponsoring a must-attend series of forum discussions on four ballot measures. The first in the series is coming up, so clear your evening Wednesday night and see both sides discuss the upcoming oil tax referendum – Ballot Measure 1 (SB21). Forum on the Oil Tax Referendum (SB 21) Wednesday, July 23, 7-9 pm Wilda Marston Theatre, Loussac Library Moderator Gunnar Knapp is Director of the Institute of Social and Economic Research (ISER) at University of Alaska Anchorage and a Professor of Economics at UAA. He has…

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Judge Confirms Lt. Gov’s Incompetence

The job of Alaska’s Lieutenant Governor really has only two duties to speak of. 1) Care and maintenance of the state seal. Not the animal – that would be hard, and require lots of work. I’m talking about the little round metal disc that turns stuff official. I don’t really know what care and maintenance that seal requires, but I’m guessing there might be buffing involved, or maybe some kind of chemical paste and a soft lint-free cloth. Perhaps it’s nestled in a velvet-lined wooden box, and needs to be checked on from time to time, to make sure nobody’s…

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The Floodgates are Open

This week I listened to one of the right-wing sock puppets yammer on about what a victory for freedom the most recent campaign finance court decision was. Honestly. The guy was more about “free and dumb” than freedom. The court, in yet another 5-4 decision, basically created eBay for elections. What we didn’t need was more stinking money in our election process but the five say otherwise. Freedom of speech is now equated with how much money you have and are willing to spend. Of course, the reverse doesn’t work. You can’t walk into a store and purchase items with…

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Anchorage Muni Voter Guide

The editors of The Mudflats don’t always agree, but this time we’re unanimous. What we agree upon most of all is that everyone must get out to vote tomorrow, Tuesday, April 1. Local elections are the most important, and least well attended. This one is particularly critical, so no excuses. Here’s your down and dirty voter guide. Anchorage Assembly Races East SideĀ  Adam Trombley vs. Pete Petersen vs. Mao Tosi Trombley has rallied the troops at the Anchorage Tea Party “Day of Resistance,” spent most of his time trying to distance himself from an increasingly unpopular Mayor who hand-selected him…

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Oil? Bloated. You? Shrinkage.

The numbers have been crunched. The “Big Five” oil companies – BP, Exxon-Mobil, ConocoPhillips, Shell, and Chevron saw a combined profit of $93 billion last year. Profit. Billion with a B. That’s $177,000 every single minute, of every day last year. Profit. Outrageous! The poor babiesā€¦ Despite what any reasonable person might think about the money pouring in to the most profitable companies ever to have existed on the face of the earth, they would still like to keep their tax breaks, please. And in Alaska, their best buddy in the governor’s office would like Alaskans to keep subsidizing this…

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Happy Birthday, Shirley Chisholm!

Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm would be 89 today. Chisholm was the very first African-American woman in the United States Congress. Born November 30th, 1924 in Brooklyn, New York to Caribbean parents, one from British Guiana and another from Cuba, Shirley became not only the first Black Congresswoman but also the first Black Presidential candidate for the Democratic or Republican Party. Congresswoman Chisholm was re-elected six more times, until her retirement in 1983. Unfortunately this awesome states-woman, person, American passed away in 2005. But luckily we have a good amount of video of her. Here’s one of my favorites from the Visionary…

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GOP Whines About Consequences

They pushed too far. This week the U.S. Senate changed its rules. After almost 40 years, the majority now rules. This was a change I’d hoped for. We’re told that elections have consequences, and sometimes they do, but in the Senate the need for a supermajority of 60 votes gave all power to the minority (Sen. Ted Cruz & Co.). To put this in context: In the history of the United States, 168 presidential nominations or appointments have been blocked by filibuster in the Senate. Eighty-two of them were directed at a single president. Can you guess which president that…

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Murkowski Slammed Over Filibuster Vote

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid finally went nuclear. Using a rare procedural move, Reid and a majority of Senators voted 52-48 to overhaul a filibuster rule which had largely worked for decades, but which Republicans had so abused since the beginning of the Obama administration, that judicial and cabinet appointments that once would have been routine, became dead in the water. The numbers speak for themselves. The vote was largely down party lines, with 3 Democrats breaking ranks. But at least one Republican we know, who had a history of supporting the concept of the up-or-down vote, cast her vote…

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Don Young & 22 in GOP Oppose TPP Fast Track

“Fast track.” Sounds productive. Sounds exciting. Sounds all, “Git ‘er dun.” But in reality, what fast track trade authority does is allow a President to sign and enter into a trade agreement before Congress gets to vote on it, have a guaranteed vote within a set number of days, limited debate, and no amendments allowed. Presidents including Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush requested the authority, which has been used 16 times since its inception in the 1970s. And now President Obama would like to have it while negotiating trade agreements via the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). [Here’s a quick…

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TPP 101 in Less than 4 Minutes. Go.

You’ve likely heard about the “TPP” in the news lately. You know it has 3 letters. You may even know that they stand for Trans Pacific Partnership. You may know that it’s considered a bad thing by the left, the right, and everyone in between. You may know it has something to do with trade… aaaand you may have gotten overwhelmed. Or you may be frustrated that other fairly engaged people seem not to know what it’s all about and why it matters. Here’s a great primer that takes less than four minutes, featuring Amy Goodman from Democracy Now interviewing…

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