Part 11: OIL COMPANY” WALKER, “OIL CAN” ORTIZ, AND OIL COMPANY SOCIALISM
By David G Hanger
June 09, 2016
One of the more interesting and more argued features of this bicameral legislature these guys put together is two senators for each and every state, no matter population, but for the House apportionment by population. The primary argument against this arrangement is that it gives too much power to the rural (or low population) states, and this is definitely true. States like Alaska have equal power in the U.S. Senate to any other state in the Union, so our voting power in the Senate is co-equal. New York and California have dozens and dozens of Congresspersons to Alaska’s one, so our voting power in the House of Representatives verges on non-existent.
This is the intended result, i.e. that the geographical areas defined as states have proportionate power in the U.S. Senate, in effect they represent a geographically defined area; while in the meantime representation in the U.S. House is based on population proportionality. Property vs. people. This brilliantly conceived counterweight within counterweights and the problems and consequences associated therewith are not the subject of this article or this series, but I think you get the idea.
The bicameral legislature of the state of Alaska is particularly problematic in this regard. For with the Borough system, with so much Federal land, with so much unincorporated land, etc. the state senate districts are essentially proportioned by population, and, of course, so is the state house. That is creating a critical conundrum for the obvious reason that the Anchorage/Fairbanks corridor has decided to use the Alaska political system to enrich themselves at the expense of all other geographical areas in the state, and because population apportionment (even before gerrymandering) determines from WHERE they get elected, the elected state representatives and state senators from the Anchorage/Fairbanks corridor have the ability to screw all of us as they see fit.
There is little or nothing any other geographical area of the state can do to stop them.
So there has been a fascinating little game going on these past two weeks to which all Alaskans should pay close attention, for as I have said the state Senate in the form of the “Coghill Abomination” is a dictatorship sponsored by the oil companies that has taken over this state. We are about to see how much backbone this Governor Walker really has, and I am willing to bet he is going to sell us all out.
SENATOR BERT STEDMAN, A MARGINAL MEMBER OF THE “COGHILL ABOMINATION,” HAS ALREADY SOLD US OUT. I do believe it just became time to find his replacement.
“Oil Company” Walker has refused to budge on the notion that the whole royalty and tax structure for the oil companies needs to be completely torn apart and revamped. He has wanted to claw back these hundreds of millions of dollars in tax credits the state is paying to the oil companies to lose money, but that is as far as he has wanted to go. “Oil Can” Dan Ortiz jumped on the Governor’s band wagon, I think without completely thinking it through, but has modified and moderated his view considerably I do believe. (He was/is a school teacher, thus has the ability to learn.)
“Oil Company” Walker’s original proposal was take pretty much all of the Permanent Fund Dividend, establish a 6% tax on individuals, re-establish corporate tax on Alaska corporations that are not currently paying tax (another of Parnell’s gimmicks), and claw back $700 million in tax credits being given as gift to the oil companies for losing money. With an added assumption hither and yon this is how he intended to balance the state budget into the indefinite future, and the reality is it lets the oil companies almost completely off the hook except for the tax credits, but otherwise does come close to balancing the budget.
The gimmick here (and that is why he is “Oil Company” Walker) is that by not taxing the oil companies they can continue to produce despite declining prices, thus keeping the Anchorage/Fairbanks corridor in good economic trim for a while longer, so that the greedheads have time to overload their bags of loot, all in anticipation of “The Beginning,” for which “Oil Company” Walker sucked up the kool-aid a long time ago.
THE MAIN PROBLEM WITH THIS IS WE ARE EXPECTED TO PAY FOR ALL THIS CRAP THOUGH IT DOESN’T BENEFIT US A DIME. The other problem, of course, is they are about to steal a whole lot of money from us, and we don’t have any real representation.
The “Coghill Abomination,” the dictatorship that runs this state, has got “Oil Company” Walker right where they want him. The Governor wants our Permanent Fund Dividend, but he does not want to give it to the oil companies. He wants it to balance the state budget. BUT HE REALLY WANTS THAT PERMANENT FUND DIVIDEND. So naturally the “Coghill Abomination” is more than happy to give the Governor his wish and deprive us of our Permanent Fund Dividend, but they are not going to balance the budget. They are going to give our Permanent Fund Dividends to their oil company buddies.
For two weeks the state senate finance committee repeatedly canceled all of its meetings, then held a midnight on the weekend public hearing, and decided (behind closed doors of course) to steal our Permanent Fund Dividend.
Before that like a red flag waved in front of a bull they threatened to finance the whole state budget using the earnings reserve account of the Permanent Fund, and this forced a vote in the House on HB247, legislation originally intended to claw back these credits that was instead debauched to the point of meaninglessness. So they got headlines for so much garbage.
Then they went straight for the jugular, and that is where we are today. Bold in the first instance and seeing once again how easy it is to roll everyone, the “Coghill Abomination” has now decided to just steal our Permanent Fund Dividend, not raid the other part of the earnings reserve account.
WHICH WAY WILL “OIL COMPANY” WALKER JUMP? I hope he surprises me and sees clearly that stealing the Permanent Fund Dividend to pay the oil companies to lose money is as corrupt as anyone has ever thought about being; and that he has sense enough to veto this crap.
But then he’s going to cry that he has to balance the budget somehow, but the dictatorship won’t let him do anything else. And the “Coghill Abomination” will be well on its way to being re-elected.
Go listen to State Senator Cathy Giessel. All of this is working according to plan.
Last time I took note of the fact that the smart money is starting to pull out around K-town. The first thing one client who owns a seasonal business noticed when he got back is how much available space there is around town. The smart people are also working on exit strategies, and quite rapidly at that. So I alert the mayors of the Ketchikan Borough and the City to the fact that your accountants, attorneys, dentists, and doctors have already in several instances procured property down south, and that others already are listing their homes on the market.
The local economic problem is not a future concern.
With Part 12, I’ll start wrapping this series up. Stay tuned.
David G Hanger
Received June 09, 2016 - Published June 09, 2016
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