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Capitol Move
by Greg Garrels


February 18, 2005

First, let me say one word on the subject...Aaaggghhh! Not this again! There, now that that is out of the way, we have two really expensive proposals here, move the capitol, or in the fine traditions of a place where we throw away schools when the doorknobs get tarnished, build a new one. Both ideas have much merit. Much merit if you happen to own a restaurant and bar in Juneau or Wasilla. Both start to pale a bit if you are just the fellow who gets stuck with the bill.

Juneau's reasons for building an expensive new capitol building are fairly obvious. Charlie Huggins is bemoaning having to move stuff like computers around. I suppose the fact that this would help no end in Wasilla's efforts to turn itself into Seattle North never entered his mind.

We are lucky to get a 25% turnout in most elections in this state. So forgive me if I don't quite see where the clamoring thousands will be dropping everything to run off to a new capitol, wherever it is, in order to have a heart to heart with their elected spendthrift. Why not keep all the legislators at home where they have to face their constituents every day? When you consider the outrageous amount of money the state has already spent on computers, networks, and teleconferencing equipment, why not just get it over with and have a virtual capitol? No citizen would be farther away from the action than the nearest keyboard, and if they want to get "face time" with their chosen one, he or she is right there, not off in Juneau or Wasilla or Timbuktu. We save a lot of money. Mr. Huggins' precious computers suffer no wear and tear. Those folks who never bother to vote in the first place can have instant access. Laws might get made officially and in public view instead of the back room of a saloon. Just think of the money the giant outside corporations would save if they could have virtual lobbyists! They could afford better bri...whoops I mean campaign contributions. If they really get to missing the social aspects of government, the elected can always get together somewhere for a few beers and backslaps and then go back to stealing hubcaps.

Greg Garrels
Salcha, AK - USA



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