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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
March 14, 2007

Front Page Photo by Carl Thompson

Snowball Morning
After snow cleaning detail Tuesday morning, Ruby Thompson
enthusiastically enjoys the snow day as she throws a rather big snowball at the photographer - and her son - Carl Thompson.
Front Page Photo by Carl Thompson

Top Stories
U.S. News
U.S. Politics


Alaska: Governor Palin Looks Ahead on 100th Day in Office - Alaska's Governor Sarah Palin marked her first 100 days in office Tuesday by reaffirming her commitment to work with the State Legislature on the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act, early funding for education and comprehensive ethics reform legislation.

"One hundred days ago, I outlined my top priorities for the state: a natural gasline, a balanced budget including temporary relief for the unexpected PERS/TRS burden, ethics reform, and workforce development," said Governor Palin. "I am proud of our accomplishments to date, but we still have a lot of work to do."

The first months of any administration always require a strong devotion to choosing the best cabinet and members of the governor's team. Quoting a news release, one of Governor Palin's greatest accomplishments in her first 100 days was putting together that cabinet in just over eight weeks - a cabinet which Palin says has only the best interests of Alaskans at heart. The Governor says she has chosen a talented, diverse cabinet which strives to further her priorities and insist upon openness and transparency.
Governor Palin submitted the AGIA to the Legislature on her 89th day in office. The legislation will act as a vehicle to get a natural gas pipeline built and bring the state's substantial gas reserves to market. The AGIA offers a number of inducements for those who hold gas leases and for those who want to build the line. In return, the state will provide a matching capital contribution and insist on the state's must-haves: project benchmarks, gas for Alaskans, expansion capabilities, and jobs for Alaskans. The state is committed to ensuring that Alaskans will be trained and ready to build the gasline. Governor Palin recently traveled to Washington D.C., where she received encouragement for the AGIA from Alaska's Congressional Delegation, FERC officials and members of the Bush Administration. - More...
Wednesday AM - March 14, 2007

Alaska: Halibut greeted dockside with offers of more than $5 a pound By WESLEY LOY - Less than a week into the new commercial halibut season, fish have begun arriving at the docks with fishermen being greeted with eye-popping prices for their catches.

And high prices at the docks are likely to translate into steep charges in restaurants and grocery stores, which should begin receiving shipments of fresh halibut this week and next.

Rhonda Hubbard, who operates the Seward-based commercial fishing boat Kruzof with her husband Jim, said the buzz on the docks was $5.50 a pound for halibut. That's about as strong a price as fishermen have ever seen.

"It's ridiculous," she said.

In contrast to some of the state's other commercial fisheries such as salmon, which has been mired in a depression in recent years, these are grand times for halibut harvesters. - More...
Wednesday AM - March 14, 2007


Alaska: Five Fishermen Rescued Near Kodiak - Five fishermen are safe after being rescued from their disabled vessel by the Coast Guard near Kodiak Island Tueday afternoon in severe weather.

At 7:48 a.m., the 53-foot fishing vessel Risky Business notified Air Station Kodiak that their vessel was listing to port and they were heading to Kodiak.  At about noon the Risky Business reported that they had a mechanical problem, were listing 30 degrees to port and were preparing to abandon ship. 


The crew of the 53-foot fishing vessel Risky Business prepares to abandon ship 69 miles east of Kodiak today after mecahnical problems and severe weather caused the ship to list to port and take on water.
Official U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. Cmdr. Shawn Tripp. 

A Coast Guard HH-60 Jayhawk helicopter was launched to assist the crew 69 miles east of Kodiak.  The helicopter arrived as the vessel was forced on its port side by 20-foot seas and 50 mph winds.  The crew was instructed to put on survival suits and enter the water.  A basket was lowered and each crewmember was safely hoisted into the helicopter.  - More...
Wednesday AM - March 14, 2007

Alaska: Bering Strait region gets first Marine Advisory Program agent; Fisheries development, subsistence, climate change among issues facing region - In town only a couple of weeks, Nome newcomer Heidi Herter is already smitten with the small northwest Alaska community (pop. 3,500), best known as being the finish line for the 1,000-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

"It's an amazing place that's full of wonderful people," said Herter. "I had lunch the other day at a sandwich shop that had windows across the entire back wall overlooking the ice-covered Bering Sea. The frozen ocean stretched as far as I could see. It was wonderful."

In the months to come, Herter will get to know these waters well. As the new Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory (MAP) agent for the Bering Strait region, she'll work with commercial and subsistence fishermen, seafood processors, and others to expand economic opportunities that make use of the region's cod, halibut, herring, salmon, and red king crab fisheries. She also will increase involvement with local marine science education. Herter joins 14 other MAP faculty located in 10 communities across coastal Alaska.

"Having Heidi in Nome gives the Alaska Sea Grant Marine Advisory Program the ability to have a strong presence in the Bering Strait region," said Paula Cullenberg, leader of the MAP program in Anchorage. "There are issues facing Alaskans in this area related to subsistence and commercial fisheries, marine safety, and even concerns about the impacts of climate change. It is a beautiful part of the state with many opportunities to work with the region's communities." - More...
Wednesday AM - March 14, 2007

Why we serve...

WHY We SERVE: The McCormicks
CAMP TAJI, Iraq -Spc. Michelle McCormick from Houston, Texas and Sgt. Erick McCormick from Ketchikan, Alaska, met on their first tour during Operation Iraqi Freedom 04-05 and are serving their second tour as a married couple.
U.S. Army Photo by Spc. Karly Cooper

Our Troops: WHY We SERVE: The McCormicks By SPC KARLEY COOPER - More and more Soldiers spend their deployments in Iraq serving along side their spouses.

Sgt. Erick McCormick, the warehouse noncommissioned officer in charge for Headquarters Headquarters Company, 15th Brigade Troops Battalion, 15th Sustainment Brigade from Ketchikan, Alaska and Specialist Michelle McCormick, a supply specialist also with HHC, 15th BTB, 15th SB, from Houston, Texas, on their second deployment together, but first deployment as a married couple.

Spc. McCormick joined the Army in 2004. Right graduation from high school, she packed her bags and headed to Fort Jackson, S. C.

"My dad is a military police and my sister is a supply specialist in the Army Reserves, so I decided to join," she said.

Her first duty station was Fort Hood, Texas and within a few short months of arriving, she deployed to Camp Taji, Iraq for three months during Operation Iraqi Freedom 04-05.

"I was excited because my dad was in Baghdad and my older sister was in Karbala." she said.

Sgt. McCormick joined the Army in 2002 after taking the first few years out of high school to work as a fisherman on charter boats. He also worked as a bio-medical tech at the Ketchikan Indian clinic, a local reservation clinic. - More...
Wednesday - March 14, 2007

Monthly Grind...

Monthly Grind Provides Another Great
Evening of Entertainment
The Tap-5 Human Rhythm Project: Picoc by Shbocklr
Photo by Susan Batho & Bill Hupe

Arts & Entertainment

Ketchikan: Monthly Grind Provides Another Great Evening of Entertainment by SUSAN BATHO & BILL HUPE - The Love Boat docked at the Saxman Tribal House on the night of February 17th to give Ketchikan residents a sample of their on-board entertainment. Kim Blum as Captain Subbing, Jack Shay as the amorous Julie, as well as The Doctor (disturbingly appearing to hawk the unsold bottles of Thomas P. Fowler's Elixir from last month's Grind) and Gopher (in the guise of Cupid) were our tour guides for the evening. The on-board entertainment was in the normal Grind tradition: Outstanding! However, the seamanship of our hosts left us wary of taking a cruise to Metlakatla with this bunch, let alone all the way up the Inside Passage.

The Straight-n-Narra Gospel Singers opened the evening, singing an uplifting trio of gospel tunes. All of the members have performed at past Grind's in a variety of other groups, but turned their combined talent to gospel music for the evening. (Did they know something about the cruise we had embarked on before we did?) - More...
Wednesday AM - March 14, 2007

Ketchikan: The Arts This Week - This week in Ketchikan there will be a Public Art Presentation. Ketchikan Public Art Works or KPAW will present their ideas for an upcoming community art project on Wed. March 14th at 7pm in the Schoenbar Middle School commons. Sketches of ideas and locations for art will be on hand as will local artists and committee members for questions and comments- public comment is welcome. Call 225-2211 for more information.

Art of the Passion of Christ, a lecture narrated by local artist Mary Ida Henrikson will be featured on Thursday, March 15 at 6:30 p.m at the Ketchikan Presbyterian Church. The presentation will feature slides of historical paintings featuring Lenten and Holy Week themes, including the last supper, arrest and trial, scourging, and crucifixion. Henrikson will narrate the presentation with information regarding each piece's uniqueness. Located at 2711 2nd Ave, the Presbyterian Church welcomes all to this special presentation. Please note the change of date from the 27th of Feb. Call the church at 225-3619 for more information. - More...
Wednesday AM - March 14, 2007


Basic Rules

letter Democrat Time Zones By Ken Lewis - Wednesday AM
letter Ward Serrill Film Playing in Ketchikan By Susan Doherty - Wednesday AM
letter If the speed limit in Ketchikan is too slow for you... By Janelle Hamilton - Wednesday AM
letter Re: What Message are we sending? By Sharyl Whitesides -Yeisley - Wednesday AM
letter Kanayama Exchange By Amber Leslie Williams Baldwin - Wednesday AM
letter Tongass Plan Amendment By Mike McKimens - Tuesday AM
letter 20th Anniversary for Ketchikan -Kanayama! By Dan Patton - Tuesday AM
letter Laws associated with the Bostwick road and pits By Gregory Vickrey - Tuesday AM
letter Schoenbar incident By Michael Moyer - Tuesday AM
letter Re: What message are we sending? By Rebecca Clark - Tuesday AM
letter Gravina Documentation, etc. By Gregory Vickrey - Tuesday AM
letterWhat message are we sending? By Ken Montero - Monday AM
letter Bottom line... By Mark Gatti - Monday AM
letterGravina By Anita Hales - Monday AM
letter God Bless You Dick By Miguel Torres - Monday AM
letter "300" By Mark Neckameyer - Monday AM
letter 'Alaska scientists aim at offering climate services' By Pete Ellsworth - Monday AM
letter Disaster Plans Needed Now! By Sonia Streitmatter - Monday AM
letter New Daylight Savings Time By Ken Levy - Monday AM
letter Natural Gas, logging, roads and so on. By Robert McRoberts - Monday AM
letter Schoenbar incident By Rebecca Clark - Thursday PM
letterSchool Superintendent, Wrong Plan for Wednesday Morning By Reggie Reinhardt - Thursday PM
letter To the Manly Mark Neckameyer By Ken Lewis - Thursday PM
letter The Iraq War By Ken Levy - Thursday PM
letter Organ donation By David J. Undis - Thursday PM
letterOliver North By Neil Kinunen - Thursday PM
letter Our President By Sarah Harney - Thursday PM
letter Gravina logging road By Eric Tyson - Thursday AM
letter Schoenbar: A Reality Check By Shauna Lee - Wednesday PM
letter School should advise parents & police By Mike Ross - Wednesday PM
letter Trees are a renewable resource By Forrest Mackie - Wednesday PM
letter Thank you Dick. By Dave Kiffer - Wednesday PM
letterAl Gore! Are you Kidding me! By Scott Kline - Wednesday PM
letter AIRPORT SHUTTLE By Ken Levy - Wednesday PM
letter Job Well Done, Dick Kauffman By David Landis - Tuesday PM
letter Bostwick Bowl By Rob Sanderson Jr. - Tuesday PM
letter Shooting threat at Schoenbar? By Bob Grace - Tuesday PM
letter Gravina Viewpoint Appreciated By Gregory Vickery- Tuesday PM
letter Good-Bye Dick By Tom LeCompte- Tuesday PM
letter Gravina road By Scott Adler- Tuesday PM
letter Tribute to Dick Kauffman By Diane Gubatayao - Tuesday PM
letter Rest Peacefully Dick By Gretchen Klein - Tuesday PM
letter Forgotten Heroes By Ken Levy - Tuesday PM
letter Our loss By Cecelia Johnson - Tuesday PM
letter Goodbye Dick By Tamela McColley - Tuesday PM
letter Litter in Ketchikan & Organ Donation By Kathy Morris - Tuesday PM
letter More Viewpoints/ Letters
letter Publish A Letter


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Columns - Commentary

John Crisp: What to call those Americans who died in Iraq - Recently, two declared presidential candidates, Barack Obama and John McCain, got in trouble for the same mistake: They used the term "wasted" to refer to the more than 3,100 American lives lost so far in Iraq. Both quickly apologized.

Columnists and bloggers took up the subject. Some of them pointed out the apparent contradiction between McCain's hawkish position on the war and his clumsy characterization of its costs. Others questioned whether Obama is all that "articulate," after all.

When the subject came up on Bill Maher's "Real Time" on March 2, the plain-spoken Maher argued that words matter, and that nothing is gained by using unduly positive language to describe our losses in a war that was unnecessary, ill advised, and poorly conceived from the beginning.

Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., one of Maher's guests that night, opposes the war, as well, but he argued that adding to the pain of families that have lost loved ones in Iraq by using terms like "wasted" is unconscionable.

We find ourselves in a bad double bind. On one hand, the war has turned from its dubious beginnings into a chaotic disaster. No one knows how to get out. The best its supporters can offer is a thin glimmer of hope. On "Meet the Press" on March 4, Sen. Lindsay Graham, R-S.C., said that Gen. David Petraeus and a surge of 21,500 troops are our "last best chance." While the violence and chaos continue, other vague reassurances come from those who have been wrong about the war all along. - More...
Tuesday AM - March 13, 2007

Dale McFeatters: Democrats rally around war plan - Democrats are beginning to rally around a broad plan for addressing the war in Iraq, thus filling an awkward gap in their political agenda, namely that they didn't have one.

The Senate and House plans vary in detail but both would set dates for withdrawal of U.S. combat troops, far enough off to give President Bush's surge a chance to work but before the presidential election so that the party won't have to face the voters having done nothing about an unpopular war.

The House plan, which would be attached to a $100 billion funding bill for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, would begin pulling combat troops out in March 2008, and have them all gone by that September.

The Senate plan, in the form of a joint resolution, would begin the withdrawal sooner and have most out by March 31, 2008.

Both would allow some U.S. forces to stay behind to train Iraqi troops, conduct counterterrorism missions and protect the U.S. diplomatic mission. - More...
Tuesday AM - March 13, 2007

Dan K. Thomasson: Same old story, same old FBI - This has become an all too familiar story.

The FBI is caught red handed in an abuse of power. Once again a shocked FBI director, Robert Mueller, apologizes, takes full responsibility and promises swift reform while congressional "watchdogs" - at least that's what they are supposed to be - pledge immediate inquiry and threaten reorganization of the bureau.

It is, of course, an idle threat made by lawmakers who have only themselves to blame for this latest example of FBI arrogance, an incredible misuse of authority granted it to fight terrorism in the wake of 9/11, an improbable event that succeeded partially because of FBI incompetence. The fact that agents pried into the lives of tens of thousands of Americans without justification is hardly startling given the history of the organization and the failure of Congress over the years of scandal to rein it in. In fact, the inevitability of it was warned repeatedly during debate over the Patriot Act. - More...
Tuesday AM - March 13, 2007

Steve Brewer: Boys, do as I say, not as I appear to do - All parents worry about setting a good example for their children, and it isn't always easy.

Children are watchful little rascals, and they have impeccable timing. Do something you've cautioned them against - drinking directly from the milk carton, for instance - and they will walk in on you in mid-guzzle. Guaranteed.

If you drop a brick on your foot and unleash a string of curses, you can bet your child will be within earshot. If you're drunkenly watching porn late at night, long after they should be asleep - well, you get the idea.

Being a parent is more than not getting caught engaging in bad habits, however. It's also teaching good behavior to the kids. Personal hygiene, for instance. Good study habits. Using one's blinker. Avoiding a life of crime.

One important area is teaching them how to work. We want our kids to become responsible, job-holding adults, so they can afford high-quality elder care for us in years to come.

We teach our kids to work by showing them how we work hard ourselves, and that's where I've got a problem. - More...
Tuesday AM - March 13, 2007

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