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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska

January 14, 2019

Front Page Feature Photo By RACHELLE SPEIGHTS

South of Ketchikan, location just before USCG entrance.
Front Page Feature Photo By RACHELLE SPEIGHTS ©2019

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Ketchikan: PUBLIC HEARINGS -- The Ketchikan City Council will hold a regular meeting on Thursday - January 17, 2019 in the City Council Chambers. On the agenda are 3 Public Hearings: Increasing Wastwater Rates; Increasing Electrical Rates and Increasing Water Rates. Click here for detailed information.


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Fish Factor: Eating seafood can save lives. By LAINE WELCH - Premature birth is the leading cause of death for children under 5 years old worldwide, accounting for nearly one million deaths annually. Now there is proof that eating seafood or marine oils can significantly reduce that number. 

The lifesaving ingredient?  Omega 3 fatty acids. 

The conclusion of a new Cochrane Review of 70 studies worldwide on nearly 20,000 pregnant women stated that omega’s from marine sources reduces early premature birth by a whopping 42 percent. 

“The effect really has to be strong to see it in a Cochrane Review and I am very impressed that it has come out as significant as it has,” said Dr. Tom Brenna, a professor of pediatrics, chemistry and nutrition at Dell Medical School at the University of Texas. 

Research on marine omega 3’s and pregnancy has been going on since at least 1992, Brenna said, who called the formal medical  global collaboration and conclusions in the Cochran Review a ‘blunt instrument.’ 

“The number of studies and the number of women studied is large enough so that it is very difficult to imagine that future studies are going to affect these results. We really are looking at something that may well be the final word,” he said. 

The results also included a 10 percent reduction in low birth weight babies of under 5.5 pounds. 

Premature babies are at higher risk of a range of long-term conditions including developmental delay, learning difficulties and visual impairment. Brenna said marine-based omega 3 fatty acids also improves those problems.    

“Many of us believe that omega 3s are important for continuing development of the neural system and of the eye,” he said. “The brain and the retina in the eye are really omega 3 organs. You can say that as calcium is to the bones, omega 3 is to the brain.” 

A challenge now, Brenna said, is to translate the marine omega 3 findings on premature birth prevention and other positives into health policy and wider educational outreach.

“I think that we have a major effect here that ought to be heralded from the rooftops far and wide,” he said. - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019

Alaska - National: As Shutdown Continues Senate Colleagues Introduce Bill to Permanently End Government Shutdowns By MARY KAUFFMAN - U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) joined eight other Senate Republicans on Friday to introduce legislation that is said would end government shutdowns permanently, if passed.

The bill’s lead sponsor is Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), has introduced similar legislation in every Congress since he joined the Senate in 2010. If passed, it would create an automatic continuing resolution for any regular appropriations bill not completed by the Oct. 1st deadline. After the first 120 days, the continuing resolution funding would be automatically reduced by 1 percent; and another 1 percent cut would kick in every 90 days thereafter.

The End Government Shutdowns Act  would permanently prevent the federal government from shutting down, ensuring that essential government services aren’t disrupted and protecting taxpayers who must bear the resulting cost. The measure will create an automatic continuing resolution (CR) for any regular appropriations bill or existing CR, keeping the federal government open when budget negotiations falter before key spending deadlines. 

The new Democratic-held House passed legislation on January 03, 2019 that would have ended a partial government shutdown. One bill passed by the House would have funded eight closed U.S. departments through Sept. 30, 2019. The other would reopen the Department of Homeland Security through Feb. 8, 2019. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on the 3rd that facing Trump's veto threat, the Senate would not "waste its time" to pass the House proposal.

“It’s disappointing that both sides didn’t resolve this matter weeks ago.  Shutdowns inevitably costs taxpayers more money once the government reopens. I hope that both parties come together and reach an agreement that brings a resolution to this issue as quickly as possible,” said the the bill’s lead sponsor Senator Rob Portman. “Moving forward, we should end government shutdowns for good.  This bipartisan legislation will accomplish that goal, providing lawmakers with more time to reach a responsible resolution to budget negotiations, giving federal workers and their families more stability, and ensuring we avoid disruptions that ultimately hurt our economy, taxpayers and working families.”

Senator Lisa Murkowski said in a prepared statement, “The ripple effect of a government shutdown has consequences for all Alaskans - most directly on the thousands of federal employees and tens of thousands more that rely on our federal agencies.”  - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019


ANALYSIS: If Trump declares a national emergency, could Congress or the courts reverse it? By CHRIS EDELSON - If President Donald Trump declares a national emergency to fund some portion of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border without congressional authorization, what would happen next?

Would the courts step in? What is Congress’ role?

As I explain in my book “Emergency Presidential Power,” presidents generally claim emergency power two ways: through inherent or implied authority under the U.S. Constitution or under statutory authority granted by Congress.

Relying on the Constitution as a basis for emergency power is controversial, and less likely to stand up to meaningful congressional or judicial review. The U.S. Constitution says nothing specific about presidential emergency power: Presidents can only claim such authority is implied or inherent.

The emergency powers the Constitution does describe are actually assigned to Congress. Congress has delegated some emergency powers to the president through statutes, including the National Emergencies Act. But Congress retains the power to reject a president’s declaration of a national emergency.

If President Trump does declare an emergency, the question is: Will Congress use the power available to it, or will it play the role of passive spectator?

Gaining congressional approval

Since presidents lack any specific constitutional emergency power, they often find it necessary to gain congressional authorization. For instance, at the start of the Civil War, with Congress out of session, President Abraham Lincoln suspended habeas corpus and took other unilateral actions. He later sought and gained retroactive approval from Congress for these actions.

This precedent of gaining congressional approval was put to the test nearly 100 years later. In 1952, President Harry Truman claimed emergency power to take control of steel factories during the Korean War in response to a labor strike. He invoked a “very great inherent power to meet great national emergencies.” Congress took no specific action to approve or disapprove, though a pre-existing statute on the books weighed against Truman.

When factory owners sued the administration, the Supreme Court, by a 6-3 vote, ruled against Truman in the famous Youngstown Sheet decision. Justice Robert H. Jackson’s concurring opinion in that case has been especially influential and is often cited by legal scholars and judges. He outlined a three-part test to be used as a starting point in determining when presidential action is constitutionally permissible.

Under Jackson’s test, presidents are on the strongest possible footing when acting with congressional approval. In this case, Jackson said, Truman’s position was weak since he was taking action that did not comply with the relevant legislative framework. In Jackson’s view, Truman’s reliance on inherent emergency power under the Constitution would dangerously concentrate power in the president’s hands, something the framers would not have wanted. - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019


ANALYSIS: Who are the federal workers affected by the shutdown? 5 questions answered By NEVBAHAR ERTAS - The current government shutdown is now the longest in American history, affecting about 800,000 federal employees out of 1.8 million full-time civil servants, not counting military personnel and postal workers.

Of those, about 380,000 have been furloughed, meaning that they cannot work or get paid. The rest, whose positions are categorized as essential, are working without pay.

Here’s a closer look at some quick facts about the U.S. federal workers.

1. Who are they?

According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management’s federal employee database, about 57 percent of federal workers were male and 43 percent were female in 2017. About 63 percent were white and 19 percent were black. Over half of the workforce had a college degree and about a quarter also had an advanced degree.

The federal civilian workforce has grown older than the American workforce overall. The average federal worker was 47.5 years old in 2017. Just about 16 percent of federal workers are under 35 years old, compared to 40 percent in the private sector. More than a quarter of federal employees are over 55.

2. Where do they work?

They might be your neighbors. More than 80 percent of the federal workers work or live outside of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

According to Governing magazine’s calculations, nearly every state has a least a few thousand affected employees. OPM shows that California tops the list with 152,466 federal workers, followed by Virginia, Texas, Maryland and Florida.

More than 18 percent work for the Department of Veterans Affairs. In fact, almost 60 percent of the federal workforce is employed by just five agencies: the VA, Army, Navy, Homeland Security and Air Force. - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019



MICHAEL REAGAN: Trump vs the Crazies - If for some strange reason you didn't already know how much the liberal media hates President Trump, you found out last week.

The Trump Hate Machine got revved up even before the president gave his national prime-time address Tuesday night about what he called "the growing humanitarian and security crisis at our southern border."

Some of the country's most desperate liberals in the media actually argued that the president's televised pitch to the country for congressional funding for a stronger border fence should not be carried live by the networks.

Why? Because they said the president lies too much and they wanted to be able to fact-check his speech beforehand.

Of course, no one in the liberal media would have ever dreamed of showing such disrespect - and obvious bias - for one of Barrack Obama's nationally televised pontifications.

Obama's lies and false promises about the benefits of ObamaCare, like his misleading spinning about his administration's fiascoes in the Middle East, were not checked, challenged or ridiculed immediately afterwards by the pundits, commentators or biased fact-checkers of the Washington Post, CNN, CBS, MSNBC, NPR,etc., etc., et liberal cetera. - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019


CARL GOLDEN: Pelosi Keeping Loud New Progressives in Line... For Now - Facing an unruly band of newly-installed members of the House clamoring for impeachment proceedings against President Trump, Speaker Nancy Pelosi has been a voice of moderation, urging caution while warning that a move to drive the president from office in the absence of clear, irrefutable evidence of wrongdoing does not enjoy majority support in the country and will backfire on her party.

A politically shrewd Pelosi is willing to allow the supporters of impeachment to continue to vent publicly and sometimes profanely, aware that she holds the stronger hand and could easily crush any intra-party rebellion.

Her ascension to the Speaker's office after dozens of candidates pledged to oppose her was a textbook lesson in manipulating the levers of power, dealing deftly with her critics, striking deals and dispensing favors. It was a masterful performance, picking off dissidents one by one until the entire opposition movement collapsed.

Even her severest critics came away grudgingly impressed at her ability to navigate choppy political waters which not so long ago threatened to swamp her and send her to a back bench.

Truth be told, Pelosi and congressional Democrats benefit from Trump remaining in office.They need an enemy, a polarizing and divisive figure whose mercurial personality, rapidly shifting and often contradictory policy pronouncements careen across the political landscape in such breathtaking fashion that even his staunchest supporters are often left bewildered and scrambling for supporting explanations. - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019

jpg Political Cartoon: Democrat Resolutions

Political Cartoon: Democrat Resolutions
Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle, GA
Distributed to paid subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.


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jpg Opinion

The Edwards' Mess By John Harrington - The Ketchikan School Board investigation into the Edwards' mess has been completed. The Executive Summary is available. The School Board is busy preparing for alterations in their policies. Great.

Now, it is time for a community response. I am not a lawyer, nor do I have significant knowledge of the intricacies of the law, but as I review State of Alaska websites it appears that required notification to authorities were not made. If my reading of statutory requirement for notification is correct, then it is time for a Grand Jury to be convened to investigate possible criminal violations committed by Superintendent Boyle, school administrators, and others.

If timely notifications had been made years ago, subsequent abuse could have been prevented, and that is indeed criminal.

Excerpts from a State of Alaska Website:

In response to the crucial need for intervention in child abuse and neglect cases, Alaska, like all other states, requires by law that certain groups of people formally report confirmed and suspected child abuse and neglect.

Who are mandated reporters: - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019

jpg Opinion

RE: Abolish Salmon Hatcheries? By Teri Dawe - I read the letter with interest. This has been a complex ongoing largely unrecognized problem for an extremely long time.

Have true wild Salmond all but disappeared... along with thousands of years of survival skills on shore off shore and in the rivers? No one really seems to be tracking what we are actually catching and eating. Are these true wild salmon or farm fish escapes or hatchery fish? What is the real ecology and ecological consciences?

The diseases introduced to BC thru imports and hatcheries and largely fish farms will soon spread North and South... Actually these infestations are probably already happening. - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019

jpg Opinion

Read the Executive Summary By Margaret Cloud - The report regarding Doug Edwards is available on-line.  I encourage people to read the entire report.  The school district was aware of issues since 2013. - More...
Monday PM - January 14, 2019

jpg Opinion

Systemic betrayal of public trust By Mark O’Brien - Concerning the Edwards abuse case, there appears to have been a systemic betrayal of public trust within the Ketchikan Gateway School District. During this past Wednesday’s meeting School Board member Diane Gubatayao was the only board member to step up and vote to not accept Robert Boyle’s letter of resignation. His resignation letter should have been rejected and the school board should have fired him instead. That collective vote would have been the first step in restoring faith in this body’s decisions regarding student safety and public trust. - More...
Friday AM - January 11, 2019

jpg Opinion

“MR. GORBACHEV, TEAR DOWN THIS WALL” By David G Hanger - “Thus, by the acts of a dismissed emissary, a disappointed president, and a divided Senate, the United States acquired California and the Southwest. This gigantic step in the growth of the American republic was not taken with enthusiasm by either president or Congress, but resulted from the fact that the elements in opposition could find no viable alternative and no basis on which they could combine. It was an ironic triumph for ‘Manifest Destiny,’ an ominous fulfillment for the impulses of American nationalism. It reflected a sinister dual quality in this nationalism, for at the same time when national forces, in the fullness of a very genuine vigor, were achieving an external triumph, the very triumph itself was subjecting their nationalism to internal stresses which, within thirteen years, would bring the nation to a supreme crisis.” (The Impending Crisis: America Before the Civil War 1848-1861 by Professor David M. Potter, 1910-1971, page 6.) - More...
Friday AM - January 11, 2019

jpg Opinion

Trump's First Two Years By Donald Moskowitz - As an Independent I provide the following evaluation of Trump's first two years in office. - More...
Friday AM - January 11, 2019

jpg Opinion

RE: A Progressive Scam By Wiley Brooks - According to Stephan Eldridge, he’s a retired authority on our federal income tax system. Whatever he is, he’s a gadfly who evidently has nothing else to do except spend his days trolling for information published on the FairTax. Obviously, he’s a big fan of our complex, unfair, burdensome and corrupt income tax system. - More...
Friday AM - January 11, 2019

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