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June 14, 2021

Headlines:

Chicken & Waffles, & John Boehner?

STRANGE OMEN #1 I should have know something was afoot in the universe when this happened just down the road from my house, begging the question, “Why?” Just to be clear, I have never actually seen a chicken cross the road, nevermind in this visually perfect allegorical fashion. I have never even seen a chicken in my neighborhood at all, though clearly there is now photographic evidence that they exist. About a quarter mile and a few hairpin mountain road turns away from the chicken sighting, is something relatively new to Alaska – a fancy gated community. It is called…

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AO37:The Bill Remains the Same

Friday was billed as the last Working Group on Ordinance 37: “An Ordinance Amending Anchorage Municipal Code Chapter 3.70, Employee Relations, With Comprehensive Updates Securing Long Term Viability and Financial Stability of Employee and Labor Relations.” In other words, an ordinance established to decrease union contracts and establish a process called “managed competition” — a program through which it is easier to outsource various job functions within the Municipality. (See: “ALEC” legislation across the nation). In spite of efforts by Assembly Members Gray-Jackson, Traini, Flynn and Honeman to potentially scrap this ordinance and start over with employee and community participation,…

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Is Pozonsky Eligible for AK Bar?

This past weekend, Shannyn Moore broke an important story in the Opnion Section of the Anchorage Daily News. She revealed that Governor Sean Parnell hired a new hearing officer for the Workers’ Compensation Board…Paul Pozonsky, a former judge from Pennsylvania. …a “former judge” who was stripped of his ability to hear criminal cases in Pennsylvania this past June and immediately resigned. Jeanne Devon followed-up with a fascinating back-story showing the family connections that give the Pozonsky’s influence over some of the most powerful individuals in Alaska, past and present. Both articles raise many questions as to the circumstances surrounding Mr….

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Oh, How the Mighty Have Fallen

By now, we’re into the seventh layer of complexity in the real-life spy thriller “Homeland meets The West Wing meets Melrose Place” – otherwise known as the Petraeus sex scandal. For those of you who haven’t tuned into the news recently, here’s a recap of what we know so far that led to Petraeus’ resignation as Director of the CIA. Republican ideologue working at the FBI sends Jill Kelley, a military Party Planner (not kidding) with whom he has an unknown relationship, shirtless pictures of himself. Later, said Party Planner gets harassing  anonymous emails of the “I saw what you…

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Help! Help! We Can’t Find Sarah Palin!

Exxon has had some challenges in Alaska in the past. Remember that whole oil spill thing? Well, that was no walk in the park. Exxon and their legal help (including now-Governor Sean Parnell) had a devil of a time with those annoying fishermen. But finally, they ruled the day, and the Supreme Court whittled down the original $5 billion settlement to a mere $500 million owed to those whose livelihoods were damaged by the spill. And if more than 20 years of fighting feisty fishermen wasn’t enough, now they actually have to try to find all those people to whom…

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Eastwood, Palin and the Long Goodbye

Tropical Storm Isaac put a damper on the first day of the Republican National Convention. But nothing hit Tampa by surprise quite as much as what happened on the last day. Tuesday, it was announced that a special mystery guest speaker would appear before Mitt Romney on the final night of the convention. The most famous of the small tribe of Hollywood Republicans, Clint Eastwood took the stage. Dirty Harry looked a little more like Crazy Uncle Harry as he stood on the podium. But he’s 82, after all, and it happens to the best of them. The difference is…

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Don Young Endorses Dem. What the… ?

Ever have one of those moments where you literally can’t believe your eyes? Well, here’s one for you. Imagine my surprise when I clicked on the Daily News headline “Young blasted for endorsing Democrat in Senate race.” Then my eye fell on the word “Hawaii.” At first, my mind went to Hawaiian Democratic Senator Daniel Inouye. He was a great friend of the late Senator Ted Stevens, who called Stevens “brother” and even came to Anchorage for his funeral and delivered a very moving eulogy. “Why would they blast Don Young for endorsing Inouye?” I thought to myself. And while…

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The Senate Heros vs. Captain Zero – Get Ready to Rumble!

The internet is a beautiful thing. How else could a political junkie snuggle into the couch in jammie pants with a cup of coffee, and commiserate with other like-minded souls for an event that rivals all this baseball stuff that everyone else seems to be talking about. I speak to you of…. (dramatic pause) the Alaska State Senate Resources Committee Meeting to discuss the governor’s newest oil tax plan. Before you roll your eyes, and click to anything but this, hear me out. Especially if you’re an Alaskan, this is one of the best reality TV shows around. It’s got…

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Steve Aufrecht’s Interview with Guadalupe Marroquin, Former Anchorage Election Chief

by Linda Kellen Biegel Steve Aufrecht’s blog “What Do I Know” is an often in-depth look at issues dealing with politics, cooking, travel and snippets from everyday life. Yesterday, Steve came up with quite the “get” — he’s the first one who was able to publish an interview with Guadalupe “Lupe” Marroquin, former Deputy Clerk in Charge of Elections for the Municipality. (One of the first things an independent investigator should “investigate” is why the Muni Clerk’s Office never hired a replacement after Lupe left. Instead, the “additional duties” were given to Deputy Clerk Jaqueline Duke, even though there is…

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City Attorney Lies to Assembly Regarding Sidewalk Ordinance (Update – Repeal)

Mayor Dan Sullivan is no stranger to controversy. Whether it’s creating a paid position for his personal “party planner,” cashing an illegitimate $193,000 check for a non-existent life insurance policy, pink slipping employees Christmas week, collecting $12,000 for being “mayor elect” before he actually started doing his job,  vetoing an ordinance that would allow the LGBT community equal rights in housing and employment, disbanding vital firefighting services and axing public safety positions… I could go on. One controversy that’s been brewing since last summer has involved an ordinance that Mayor Sullivan has ushered through the Assembly. This particular ordinance is…

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