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June 13, 2021

Headlines:

The Weekend Off – News You Missed

  Alaska The Economist – Murre mystery – Thousands of seabirds are washing up dead on Alaska’s shores AT THE end of the highway, 200 miles from Anchorage, sits a small fishing and tourism town where, in early January, thousands of dead common murres, or guillemots, were washed ashore. These penguin-like seabirds littered the tidal wracks so densely that beach walkers had to be careful where they stepped. And beyond Homer, tens—probably hundreds—of thousands of these birds have drifted in dead along Alaska’s vast coastline or have been found far inland half-dead in the snow. Bloomberg – U.S. Bans Import of…

Money Machine Steamrolls Alaska

This week I received an email from a Republican friend. (Yes, I have those.) She requested a different kind of column from me this week. “Instead of adding to all the ugly, negative political comments out there why not a column about the economic stimulus this election is having on Alaska with all the Outside money coming into the state?” Really? Yeah! We have Outside money trying to get a guy elected that wants to get rid of Social Security! That’s the opposite of economic stimulus. So the short answer is, no. I won’t be riding that unicorn this week….

Alaskans March Against Monsanto (PHOTOS)

More than 300 demonstrators turned out on a beautiful Memorial Day weekend to join groups across the world marching in protest against Monsanto, and genetically modified foods. For an issue that crosses political boundaries, the enthusiasm was clear and loud. Local activists organized the event to bring attention to threats to our food supply,to support local Alaska farmers, and to raise general awareness about the effects of genetically modified foods on farmers, and our health. Marchers also carried signs warning against genetically modified “frankenfish,” a salmon-eel hybrid that could damage wild stocks. “We want safer food, we want to know…

March Against Monsanto

Monsanto shouldn’t be immune from the U.S. justice system. That’s why I’m co-sponsoring legislation to eliminate the Monsanto rider. The Monsanto rider stripped the courts of their power to halt the planting of genetically modified crops that could be dangerous to people or the environment. I will keep working on this issue because genetically modified crops can be just as dangerous as genetically modified fish. I’ve always opposed Frankenfish—and I oppose special legal exemptions for Frankenfruit companies too.  ~Senator Mark Begich, D-AK Anchorage will be making history when we participate in the first ever global March Against Monsanto! Join over…

Frankenfish Redemption! (PHOTOS)

The good news is there’s actually an issue that Alaskans agree on – Red ones, Blue ones, and Tea-colored ones. And it is this: Tinkering with the genetic code of life, creating an animal that has never existed in nature, not telling people what it is, and selling it in direct competition with Alaska’s wild salmon is a really, really bad idea. We had the opportunity to send our comments to the FDA, to tell them not to allow this unidentified, unlabeled, genetically-engineered Atlantic-Pacific-salmon-eel-hybrid on our shelves, or in our bodies. But you forgot. The deadline came and went, and…

Alaskans Gone Wild – Say No to Frankenfish!

(Insert Jaws theme here) The Frankenfish is coming!  Unless we all speak up… The push to introduce a genetically-modified, farmed Atlantic-Pacific-Salmon-Eel hybrid into the marketplace continues, but we have time to stop it. Alaska’s entire congressional delegation is all on our side on this one, so no excuse to call it a “partisan political issue.” This is about Alaska’s greatest sustainable treasure, our wild and wonderful salmon. The FDA has already issued a draft Environmental Assessment with a finding that genetically modified Atlantic salmon caused no significant environmental impact. Really? Sorry, FDA. Alaskans are smarter than that. We know that contamination…

Frankenfish or Cut Bait

When Barack Obama was campaigning in 2007, he said something that I’d been yearning to hear from a politician. He vowed, as president, he would strive to “let folks know when their food is genetically modified because Americans have a right to know what they’re buying.” I realize the difference between campaigning and being president is much like the difference between dating and being married — but that seemed like a pretty solid statement. Europe has required all foods containing ingredients genetically modified to be labeled since 1997. Fifty countries, including China and Russia, require food manufacturers to label GMOs….

Don Young Will Break You

Guess what, boys and girls? The Food and Drug Administration just announced that a genetically modified, farmed Atlantic-Pacific salmon-eel hybrid (also known as the Frankenfish) is perfectly safe for human consumption! Mmmmmm. Anyone want some Farmed-genetically-modified-Atlantic-Pacific-salmon-eel-hybrid dip on a cracker? Come on, don’t be shy. It’s perrrrfectly fine. The government says so. Ah, the gubmint. Alaska conservatives’ entity of choice when it comes to a target for hurling bile is the Environmental Protection Agency. But with the FDA, Alaska’s bipartisan congressional delegation comes together in a big bile-hurling kumbaya. “The notion that consuming Frankenfish is safe for the public and…

All Hail the Glorious Frankenfish!

There are times when people who have no idea what they’re talking about can really be infuriating. Then, there are other times when their overblown level of ill-placed self-confidence, and the astronomic scale of their own ignorance combines in such a way that it actually turns into comic relief. Case in point – the latest boil on the behind of the internet, The Northern Right blog (which is so thin on intelligent commentary you can actually see through it) has given a platform to one Mr. Alex Gimarc. Mr. Gimarc is not effusing about the usual right wing talking points…