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September 21, 2021

Assemblyman Admits Back Room Shenanigans

Tuesday’s Anchorage Assembly meeting promised to be more interesting than usual, but no one was expecting the jaw-dropping admission of blatant politicking by a supporter of the Mayor on the Assembly, and that the peoples’ referendum to repeal a draconian labor ordinance was being set up as a casualty of electoral manipulation. The Anchorage Assembly passed its anti-union, anti-public-employee Ordinance 37 back in March of 2013 despite hours and hours of testimony against it. In fact, Chair Ernie Hall even cut off testimony with many still waiting for an opportunity to speak. That led to the filing of a petition to…

I love my city, and I love my job

“It’s starting to feel like a rock concert.” I agreed with the anonymous voice drifting over the mass of people, packed like sardines into the lobby of the Assembly chambers. Bright lights were on, TV cameras set up, and people were fanning themselves with folders, and papers. Everyone was here to testify on Ordinance 37, the mayor’s attempt to take advantage of the current makeup of the Assembly to push through a law that would restrict workers’ rights, and curtail collective bargaining for public unions. The turnout was impressive. I wasn’t sure if anyone had shown up to testify in…

2012 Parting Shots

If you live in the Lower 48, you may be under the illusion that your state knows how to do “trashy” and “no way—that’s not for real!” It doesn’t. Not compared to Alaska. So sit back with some popcorn and check out the pros. Parenting Fail If you’re going to engage your own son in LSD-fueled hand-to-hand combat in the street over a woman (!), at least don’t do it in the nude. In Spenard, that makes you such a cliché. Poor Kids Get Baked Speaking of excessive nudity, House Finance Co-Chair Bill Stoltze refused to allow a vote on…

Solidarity Picnic Photo Album!

Yesterday, labor leaders of all stripes, and the middle class who loves them joined together in solidarity on the Park Strip in downtown Anchorage. It couldn’t have been a nicer day – sunshine, gentle breeze, none of that wet stuff falling from the sky. Hundreds of people and their families were there. Candidates, and elected officials milled about – all there to show their support for the middle class. Alaska has the second-highest union density of any state (New York is first), so Alaskans understand the importance of organized labor and how it improves the quality of life for all…

How Many Brownies (and Alaskan Jobs) Did Lisa Murkowski Just Give Away?

Friday afternoon, the offices of the AFL-CIO in Anchorage were hopping. Look at the sinister faces of all those “union thugs.” That’s one thing I’ve never understood. How can any Alaskan, in a state with the second-highest union density in the country, think of unions as “thuggery.” Union men and women are your neighbors, your friends, your kids’ soccer coaches, your fellow church members – people who work hard, and enjoy good jobs with benefits that let them enjoy life and give back to their community by volunteering, putting money into the local economy, sending their kids to college… all…