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March 21, 2022

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Alaska: Alaska Congressman Don Young Has Died; Dean of the House Will Lie in State in National Statuary Hall of the U.S. Capitol Posted & Edited By MARY KAUFFMAN - The afternoon of Friday, March 18, 2022, the Office of Congressman Don Young released a statement announcing his death as he was traveling back to Alaska.
Alaska Congressman Don Young Has Died; Dean of the House Will Lie in State in National Statuary Hall of the U.S. Capitol

In the statement, staff wrote, “It’s with heavy hearts and deep sadness that we announce Congressman Don Young (R-AK), the Dean of the House and revered champion for Alaska, passed away [Friday] while traveling home to Alaska to be with the state and people that he loved. His beloved wife Anne was by his side."

This morning the Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced that Congressman Don Young (R-AK), the Dean of the House and longest-serving Republican representative, will lie in state in National Statuary Hall in the United States Capitol on Tuesday, March 29, 2022. 

As Speaker Pelosi said after his passing, “For five decades, he was an institution in the hallowed halls of Congress: a serious legislator always bringing people together to do the People’s work.  The photographs of him with ten presidents of both parties who signed his bills into law that proudly cover the walls of his Rayburn office are a testament to his longevity and his legislative mastery.”

A formal ceremony will be held Tuesday morning on March 29th with the Young family, which will be open to invited guests.  Following the memorial service, there will be viewing open to Members of Congress.  Additional details will be announced at a later date.

Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy released a statement Friday saying, “Congressman Don Young has been a great friend of mine for many years. I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of this amazing man who, in many ways, formed Alaska into the great state it is today. Hours after being sworn into the U.S. House of Representatives, he was leading the historic battle for approval of the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline. Shortly after, he was impressively honored in 1973 as the ‘Freshman Congressman of the Year.’ This is the Congressman whom Alaska will remember forever. Alaska is a better place because of Don Young. Rose and I offer our prayers to his family during this difficult time.”

Governor Dunleavy ordered on Friday that Alaska state flags and the United States flags fly at half-staff immediately until interment.

Donald Edwin Young was born on June 9, 1933 in Meridian, California. Young moved to Alaska in 1959, not long after it became a state. He eventually settled in Fort Yukon, then a 700-person city on the Yukon River, seven miles above the Arctic Circle in Alaska's central interior region.

Congressman Young first entered public service in 1964 when he was elected Mayor of Fort Yukon. Two years later, Alaskan voters elected him to the State Legislature in Juneau where he served in the State House from 1966 to 1970, and later in the State Senate from 1970 to 1973. Just hours after being sworn in to United States House of Representatives in 1973, he found himself leading the historic battle for approval of the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline. Often citing this as the single most important achievement in his career, Congressman Young stated, “Next to statehood itself, the most historical legislation passed that affected every Alaskan then, now, and in the future, was the passage of the pipeline legislation.”

Congressman Don Young was re-elected to the 117th Congress in 2020 to serve his 25th term as Alaska’s only Member of the United States House of Representatives.  He was first sworn in as a freshman to the 93rd Congress after winning a special election on March 6, 1973. Congressman Young became Dean of the House in 2017.

Young's staff described him as a fierce defender of Alaska since elected to Congress in 1973, saying nearly everything that has advanced for Alaska is a result of Don Young’s tenacious work. From the Trans-Alaska pipeline, to the Ketchikan Shipyard, to the Magnuson Stevens Act, which transformed the American fishing industry, to the numerous land exchanges he fought for, Don Young’s legacy cannot be overstated wrote his staff in a statement.

“Every day, I try to do something for somebody and some group, Congressman Young once said. “And every day I try to learn something new. We all go into the ground the same way. The only thing we leave behind are our accomplishments.”

On hearing of Young's passing, U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan (R-AK) released a statement Friday saying, “Like all Alaskans, Julie and I are saddened, shocked, and devastated by the sudden passing of our Congressman Don Young. His spirit - authentic, tenacious, indomitable, a man of the people - epitomized our great state to such a degree that there was a sense he’d always be with us, that he’d live forever." 

Sullivan wrote, “He was a dear friend and mentor, and I have learned so much from this great Alaskan. The Alaska that we know and love today is a reality because of the tireless work of Don Young."

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski also released a statement Friday, “Alaskans are devastated by this shocking and sad news and I am saddened beyond belief about the loss of my friend. We have lost a giant who we loved dearly and who held Alaska in his heart - always. Don was coming home to the place that he loved, and to the people that loved him best. We love you, Don.”

Members of the Alaska Senate Majority are among those who also mourn the passing Congressmane Young. Quoting a news release, Young was known for his absolute dedication to Alaska, his down-to-earth political acumen, and his ability to work across party lines for what was best for Alaskans.  

Alaska Senate President Peter Micciche said, “We are still reeling from [Friday's] news about the loss of our close friend, Congressman Don Young. After dedicating well over 50 years of his larger-than-life existence serving the people of Alaska, it almost seemed that Congressman Young would live forever. Instead, he will live in our hearts for as long, in spite of his mortality."  - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

Fish Factor: 8th largest salmon hatchery home-coming since 1977 By LAINE WELCH - Salmon returning home to Alaska hatcheries again accounted for nearly one-third of the 2021 statewide catch for commercial fishermen at 64 million fish. It was the 8th largest hatchery home-coming since 1977 and at a payout of $142 million, the salmon produced 25% of the overall value at the Alaska docks.  

An additional 220-thousand salmon that got their start in a hatchery also were caught in Alaska sport, personal use and subsistence fisheries.

Nearly 70 million adult hatchery salmon returned last year, according to the annual salmon enhancement report by the Alaska Dept. of Fish and Game. Pinks comprised the bulk of the pack topping 57 million, followed by chum salmon at 9.4 million.   

Currently, 30 salmon hatcheries operate in Alaska. Twenty-six are operated by private nonprofit corporations and are funded primarily from the sale of a portion of the returning fish. Of these, 11 are state-owned and operate at no cost to Alaska. The state also operates two sport fish hatcheries, one research hatchery is run by NOAA Fisheries, and the Metlakatla Indian Community also owns and operates a hatchery. 

At a glance: 

Prince William Sound had the highest number of hatchery returns in 2021 at 48.2 million salmon. Nearly 40 million were caught in the commercial fisheries, worth almost $68 million to fishermen, or 62% of the dockside value. Pink salmon contributed the most at $49 million. 

Kodiak ranked second for hatchery salmon returns at 11.6 million fish. That produced a catch of more than eight million fish worth $10 million to fishermen. Pink salmon contributed most to the value at over $8 million, followed by sockeyes at $1.5 million.

Southeast Alaska had a total return of 8.2 million hatchery salmon and nearly five million were caught valued at $32 million to fishermen, or 27% of the region’s dockside value.

Cook Inlet ranked fourth for hatchery returns at 827,000 salmon. The fish contributed about 134,000 salmon to the Inlet’s commercial fishery valued at $946,000, or 5% of the value to fishermen.  Sockeye salmon paid out the most by far at $908,000, followed by pink salmon at $38,000. 

Since 1995, annual releases by Alaska’s combined hatcheries have ranged from 1.4 to 1.8 billion juvenile salmon   

About 1.7 billion fish were released in 2021, mostly from eggs collected in 2020. They included 870 million pink salmon and 750 million chums.

Alaska hatchery operators expect a total return of just over 44 million salmon in 2022. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

UAS Alaska Native Student Success Specialist Hired

Dannielle Carlson

Southeast Alaska: UAS Alaska Native Student Success Specialist Hired - Dannielle Carlson, UAS alumni class of 2017 and Rural Admissions Counselor for UAS is assuming a new position at the University of Alaska Southeast. In her new role, Carlson will engage with students, counselors and advisors, and communities with a focus on Alaska Native student success. 

This position supports the University of Alaska system Alaska Native Success Initiative (ANSI) and the UAS priority of attracting and retaining Alaska Native students and community engagement.

Quoting a news release, UAS takes pride in having the distinction of Minority Serving Institution (MSI) and Native American Serving Non-Tribal Institution (NASNTI) status based upon its twenty percent (20%) Alaska Native student enrollment.

Carlson brings exceptional experience to this role. “My personal background as a first generation, rural, Alaska Native university student at the University of Alaska Southeast has greatly contributed to my six years of success in my previous position as the Rural Admissions Counselor and will continue to aid in my success as the new Alaska Native Retention Specialist."

Carlson said, "I am Unangax (Aleut) from Sand Point, Alaska where my family still resides. I received my Bachelor of Liberal Arts in Social Science and Communications from UAS in 2017. I have been working directly with rural Alaskan students and communities across the state of Alaska since the fall of 2016. I have readily accepted the challenge to recruit students here to UAS and look forward to a new challenge to retain these students and see them not only succeed here at UAS but thrive." - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022


Alaska: Governor Dunleavy Prioritizes PFD and Savings with Projected $3.6 Billion Increase in Revenue Forecast - Unexpected oil revenue to the State of Alaska has created a projected $3.6 billion increase to the revenue forecast over this year and the next, according to the Alaska Department of Revenue’s Spring 2022 Revenue Forecast released last week. Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy requested the Legislature to use some of the surplus to get immediate relief to Alaskans who are facing high fuel costs and 40-year record inflation hikes and to secure the remainder in savings.

“Rising oil prices are benefiting government finances and hurting Alaskans,” said Governor Dunleavy. “I’m asking the Legislature to help alleviate economic hardship for Alaskans now, by paying every eligible resident a PFD this year of at least $3,700. We must get funds into the hands of Alaskans now when the bills are due, not in a month’s time.”

“As your Governor, I can’t choose the amount of the PFD. I wish the law gave me such authority, but it doesn’t. Only the Legislature can make this happen,” Governor Dunleavy said. “We have the resources. We have the duty to do something to help now. Alaskans are paying the price in these uncertain times. Rural Alaska is about to see the highest fuel contracts ever. Gas prices have gone up nearly a $1/gallon in a month in Southcentral. The consumer price index rose 7.9 percent, the fastest pace in 40 years. I urge the Legislature to offer relief to Alaskans now.”

Deputy Commissioner of Revenue Brian Fechter also spoke to reporters at last week’s news conference. “Due to current market conditions, we are presented with a tremendous opportunity to use this additional revenue to provide relief to Alaskans currently grappling with high inflation all while putting billions into savings to deal with future price volatility,” Fechter said.

The Unrestricted General Fund (UGF) revenue forecast has been increased by $1.2 billion for FY 2022 and $2.4 billion for FY 2023.  Forecasts for revenue have also been increased for all years beyond FY 2023.

“Under the 10-year outlook, we can have surpluses while paying the PFD,” Governor Dunleavy said. “We can also rebuild our savings with these surpluses in the range of $11 billion over ten years, based on a conservative forecast of $70 plus per barrel to 2031.” - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022


Alaska: Work begins to restructure the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services - Now that Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy's Executive Order 121 (EO 121) has become law, the Alaska Department and Health and Social Services (DHSS) announced today they will be focused on the ongoing organizational work needed to create two separate departments by the implementation date of July 1, 2022.

“Reorganization will create an environment for innovation and greater responsiveness,” said Governor Dunleavy. “The two departments will be able to manage their programs more efficiently and more responsibly to the constituents they serve. And they’ll be able to work on long-term strategic goals such as focused stakeholder engagement, federal partner negotiations, and Alaska-specific solutions for health care.”

The budget of DHSS is bigger than 12 other state departments’, the legislature, court system and Governor’s office combined. A small executive team of five people manage 3,200 employees.

Quoting a news release from the Alaska DHSS, restructuring DHSS will allow for a stronger alignment of missions across divisions and programs within the two departments, and the time and space for each department to work with beneficiaries, providers and partners to improve the system of care. 

On July 1, 2022, the two departments will be two separate legal entities.

“This has been a long, deliberate process to get to this point, and I appreciate all of the stakeholders who engaged with us and helped shape this process,” said DHSS Commissioner Adam Crum. “I’d like to thank the Legislature for their thoughtful review of the Executive Order. This process has spanned two legislative sessions and the end result is stronger because of the legislative review process.” 

“The reorganization was designed to not disrupt services to beneficiaries or payments to providers,” said Crum. “These two departments allow for proper management and support to work on improving critical services delivered to and for Alaskans.”

EO 121 was proposed by Governor Dunleavy at the start of this legislative session under the constitutional authority in Article 3 Section 23, which also grants the legislature a period of 60 days to evaluate executive orders and vote to disprove them in a joint session. Absent legislative action, executive orders become law.

“This is only the beginning,” Crum added. “Over the next few months, we will continue to engage with stakeholders to make sure the transition plan covers what it needs do. Post-implementation we will be conducting regular reviews of the process to ensure Alaskans continue to be served by these smaller, more nimble departments.” - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

Alaska: Alaska Legislature approves name change for Division of Forestry; Agency will be Alaska Division of Forestry & Fire Protection starting July 1, 2022 - Facing no opposition from the Alaska Legislature, an Executive Order introduced by Governor Mike Dunleavy in January to change the name of the Alaska Division of Forestry to the Alaska Division of Forestry & Fire Protection was approved on Friday, March 18. The name change will go into effect on July 1, 2022.

The new title more clearly reflects the public safety and fire suppression responsibilities of the agency, as well as its forestry duties, said Division of Forestry Director Helge Eng, who requested the name change. Many people are not aware of the Division’s firefighting responsibilities even though the agency provides wildland fire suppression for more than 152 million acres that includes the state’s most populated areas.

“This name change reinforces the fact that the Division of Forestry & Fire Protection is Alaska’s fire department and that wildland fire suppression is one of our two primary missions, along with forestry management,” Eng said. “Our firefighting mission has intensified in recent years with longer, more complex fire seasons in both Alaska and the Lower 48.”  - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

In the crosshairs of an atmospheric river

In the crosshairs of an atmospheric river
Satellite images reveal the atmospheric river that caused a fatal mudslide in Haines, Alaska, on Dec. 1-2, 2020. The image shows a column of total precipitable water headed to Alaska from south of Hawaii.
Geographic Information Network of Alaska image courtesy of Carl Dierking.


Southeast Alaska: In the crosshairs of an atmospheric river By NED ROZELL - Because of where Southeast Alaska sits - at the wetted lips of the planet’s widest expanse of blue — it is often soaked by atmospheric rivers, firehoses of moisture flowing up from the tropics.

And even though the forests and muskegs of Southeast Alaska have evolved to drink up and shed stunning amounts of rain, sometimes it is too much.

For example, early this year, Carl Dierking measured more than 6 inches of rain outside his Juneau home in just two days, the result of an atmospheric river that stalled, leaving the faucet on for days over Alaska’s panhandle.

Dierking lives in Juneau, where for almost 40 years as a National Weather Service meteorologist he monitored occasional visits from the “Pineapple Express,” a term professionals used before atmospheric rivers became popular.

Now, Dierking helps his former colleagues know when one of these drenching events is about to impact Alaska, with the help of satellites orbiting 500 miles overhead. He works for the Geographic Information Network of Alaska, part of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute. His tools are instruments aboard the satellites that measure how much moisture is in a certain part of the atmosphere, even when it is cloudy.

Alaska has giant swaths of unpeopled country with no twirling weather radars, or none that can see beyond where mountains are blocking them.

“Satellite data is really our only tool for seeing where heavy rain is impacting a (remote) area,” Dierking said.

By looking at information right after a polar-orbiting satellite dumps its invisible information into two satellite dishes near Fairbanks, Dierking can make sense out what a satellite has seen. The satellites use a passive microwave detector to measure energy emitted by rain.

“It’s not a simple process, but there’s a signal you can squeeze out to get the intensity of rainfall,” Dierking said.

Using that information, the scientists can predict an atmospheric river event, such as the one that resulted in more than 10 inches of rain falling on Haines and other Southeast towns in early December 2020. Two people died from mudslides in Haines. Heavy rain falling on fresh snowfall also caused other debris flows and flooding.

“That event brought moisture up from south of Hawaii,” Dierking said. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

Columns - Commentary



RICH MANIERI: HISTORY TELLS US TO TAKE TYRANTS LIKE PUTIN SERIOUSLY - The world seemed surprised when Hitler annexed the Sudetenland of Czechoslovakia in 1938. More surprised when he invaded Poland in 1939 and flabbergasted when he marched into the Soviet Union in 1941.

Never underestimate the ambitions of an evil tyrant.

Perhaps the West thought Vladimir Putin was bluffing about invading Ukraine. If so, the U.S. and its NATO allies are lousy poker players.

History tells us that the only deterrent to evil despots is strength. This is the nature of bullies. Why the Biden administration, and President Biden himself on more than one occasion, told the world, including Putin, that he would not use American force in defense of Ukraine was as baffling as it was irresponsible. Force and the threat of force are two different things.

It is certainly understandable why we would want to do everything possible to stay out of a shooting war with Russia. But saying so out loud amounted to a calligraphed invitation to Putin to move forward. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022


TOM PURCELL: HOW COMMONERS CAN COPE WITH INFLATION - Finally, people have found something to agree about.

Last week, economics professor Teresa Ghilarducci penned an op-ed for Bloomberg News in which she offers tips on how people who earn less than $289,000 a year can cope with inflation.

Her piece got quite a negative Twitter reaction from people across the political spectrum.

If you make over $289,000 a year, the column tells us, inflation will not sting as bad as it would if you make $50,000 a year.

Paying upwards of $5.00 for a gallon of gas is a lot harder to do when you don’t make nearly $300,000 a year, apparently.

I majored in English, but even I could figure that out.

But the advice she gives to plebeians to cope with inflation is what really set the negative Twitter reactions off.

How to deal with rising fuel prices? Ditch your car — heck, sell it as a shortage of new cars has made your used car worth way more than it should be — and jump on a bus. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022


CHRISTINE FLOWERS: KETANJI BROWN JACKSON: LET’S HOPE TURNABOUT IS NOT FAIR PLAY - I certainly hope that the hearings on Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court nomination, which started on Monday, are what Sen. Dick Durbin wants them to be: “Respectful and dignified.” That would be such a pleasant change from recent experience.

I imagine that there are no friends from the nominee’s past who just now remember a high school party she “might” have attended where there “might” have been inappropriate activity on a night that no one else can actually recall. That would be a terrible shame, and trigger such an unfortunate series of events, not to mention some really mediocre “Saturday Night Live”sketches.

Let’s pray that there aren’t going to be any folks digging through the judge’s past religious affiliations, looking for evidence that she belongs to a cult. It would be so regrettable if Judge Brown’s family and former associates happened to be dragged through the mud by political partisans, who only care about ensuring that an ideologue of their particular tribe makes it to the high court. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022


FINANCIAL FOCUS: HSA: A healthy way to save for retirement Provided By BEN EDWARDS, AAMS® - Many expenses in life are unpredictable. But there are two things you know you’ll have to pay for: medical bills and retirement. You’ll probably need to take a variety of steps to meet these costs, but one financial instrument that can help is a health savings account (HSA).

If you’re not familiar with an HSA, here are the basics:

• Eligibility – If you are enrolled in a qualified high-deductible health plan (HDHP), you can generally contribute to an HSA. While HSAs are typically offered through employers, you can still open one if your employer doesn’t provide it, or if you’re self-employed, although you must have HDHP coverage. You also can’t be enrolled in another health insurance plan, other than those permitted, such as dental, vision, long-term care and disability insurance, and you can’t be enrolled in Medicare. Also, you can’t be claimed as a dependent on another person’s tax return.

• Contribution limits – In 2022, you can put in up to $3,650 to an HSA if you have single coverage, or $7,300 for family coverage. And if you’re 55 or older, you can put in an extra $1,000 per year. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022


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jpg Opinion

Supporting Ukraine By Rep. Dan Ortiz - On Friday, the Alaska House of Representatives passed Senate Joint Resolution 25, “Supporting Ukraine.” The resolution, which passed the Senate unanimously the prior week, is now headed to the Governor’s desk for a signature.

The resolution sparked lively debate on the House Floor, but is ultimately a simple piece of legislation. It shows the Alaska Legislature’s solidarity with the people of Ukraine by condemning Russia’s illegal invasion, supporting federal-level sanctions and other measured actions, and demanding Russia to stop hostilities. While support for the resolution was not unanimous (it was opposed by four members of the House Minority), it did offer an opportunity for the Legislature as whole to voice bi-partisan support for the independent, representative republic of Ukraine.

I am fully supportive of the Resolution and my condolences go out to the Ukrainian people during this difficult and terrifying time. There are many ways we can show our support, and one way is donating. Some aid organizations that are directly helping Ukrainians are the Ukrainian Red Cross, Voices of Children, Doctors Without Borders, UNICEF, and many more. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

jpg Opinion

Gas prices, propaganda, war, and politics By Dr. Wim Laven - I come from oil country, so does House Minority leader Kevin McCarthy. My hometown - Bakersfield, in Kern County CA - Kern County was once the top producer and has been a top three oil-producing county in the US as recently as 2014. 

Both of us know he is lying when he blames: “These are President Biden’s prices.”

Petro Online, an oil industry news source, reports that on average it takes a month for oil to get pumped from the ground to complete the refining process (if it does not become part of reserves). I remember working on oil production equipment on September 11th when my boss said, “you better fill up before the prices go up.” They did.

On the House floor McCarthy says, “Democrats want to blame surging prices on Russia. But the truth is, their out-of-touch policies are why we are here in the first place.”

In reality, it’s simply laissez-faire piratical opportunism. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

jpg Opinion

The Russian Pariah By Donald Moskowitz - Putin is Hitler reincarnated. Hitler tried to create a German empire throughout Europe during WWII. Putin wants to recreate a Russian empire in Europe starting with the invasion of Ukraine. Unfortunately, the democracies are currently showing similar military wariness tendencies as the Allies showed against Hitler's initial invasions.

Putin thought he would overrun Ukraine, but he is meeting fierce resistance from the Ukrainians. Increased military preparedness by NATO, especially in Poland, and severe economic sanctions might deter Putin from his expansionist policy, but it will not save Ukraine.  NATO and the U.S. should have sent military forces into western Ukraine. Out of fear of Russia the Biden administration balked at transferring Polish aircraft to Ukraine. We let down Ukraine, and this will embolden Putin. 

The free world must continue to support Ukraine with military and economic assistance, and sanctions must be maintained against Russia until it leaves Ukraine. Subsequently, Russia should be subjected to TRILLIONS of dollars in war reparations starting with their seized assets; and Putin and his henchmen must be charged with war crimes. - More...
Monday PM - March 21, 2022

jpg Opinion

Politics By A. M. Johnson - To this point related to politics I have been somewhat successful in keeping the stress level below mind blowing. No need to re-counter the obvious amateur hour that Washington D.C. has presented to the world in this past and current year.  Perhaps the accumulation of the out of control is best demonstrated by the following video...

The saddest part of what will be a normal reaction to the content begs the question: "Where is the similar outrage by our Alaska contingent??"  Nothing, zip, Nata, proving once again that Alaska Congressional representatives "Go along to Get along".

So disgusted and outraged at how the government is being run and the debt that is being created by those that have no fiscal conception on the damage to the lives and standard of living of our Great Grand children . Let me repeat an old Middle East proverb, a simple lesson in fiscal economic... More...
Tuesday PM - March 15, 2022
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Another parent complaining or a problem of Nepotism in school sports programs? By Steven Booth - Just another parent complaining about their child’s playing time or is it a problem of Nepotism in school sports programs?  

The prohibition of nepotism is a common rule in many organizations for good reason. Nepotism has been defined as a form of favoritism, which is granted to relatives in various fields, including business, politics, entertainment, sports, and other activities. Nepotism in youth sports seems to be a field in which there are few recommended policies or regulations.  

Non-interscholastic youth sports programs like KDL rely on volunteers, and it is difficult to find coaches with the interest in coaching unless they have a child in the program. This is understandable; however, these situations are not without many parents complaining about the disparate playing time the coach’s child is getting over their child, regardless of the player’s skill level.

High School coaches are under contract to the School District, certified by ASAA, and the stakes are higher when youth are in competition not only on the court but also for scholarships that affect future educational opportunities. With these huge financial benefits, there are incentives to take an advantage by using their position as coach/teacher and artificially elevate their child’s status. This is where the appearances of corruption gain their roots.

When these problems become obvious parents start to talk, gossip and plot, yet, parents fear confrontation or fear retaliation towards their child in the form of either deliberate or subliminal resentment and, as expected, there is a decrease in trust, morale and commitment from unrelated players. “There is no ladder to climb when the top rung is reserved for people with a certain name." - More...
Monday PM - March 07, 2022
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ABOUT THOSE –ISMs AGAIN By David G Hanger - Tucker Snarlson is either a very stupid person or he thinks his audience is a collection of knuckleheads. Maybe he just likes calling the kettle black.

A left-winger cannot possibly be a fascist for the simple reason that fascism is an extreme right wing political philiosophy, and as a charter member of the Joseph Goebbels School of Journalism Tucker Snarlson is in fact a deep-fried fascist propagandist who as recently as yesterday expressed his love and devotion for Vladolf Putrid.

From left to right then, since we read in that direction, we have ‘communism,’ ‘socialism,’ ‘liberalism,’ ‘progressivism,’ ‘classic liberalism,’ ‘conservatism,’ and ‘fascism.’ And as with the Christian religion there are numerous sects and sub-sects of all of these –isms. Nazi-ism is the Hitlerian German version of fascism, and it is safe to say if you call someone a fascist, you are in fact calling them a nazi.

So if you want to insult a so-called leftie you call them a Commie, a Pinko, or a Socialist. The extreme right wing is where Nazis live, and it is no surprise that Tucker Snarlson is employed by an Australian Nazi named Rupert Murdoch. If you want to claim the label, you must also wear it. Tucker Snarlson is a fascist.

This whole concept of left and right is pretty stupid. It originates in the early stages of the French Revolution when Louis XVI finally acquiesced to the seating of a legislature. The royalists all sat to the right of the podium while the commoners and the revolutionaries of multiple persuasions sat to the left of the podium. - More...
Monday PM - March 07, 2022
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When will the Russians decide to take back Alaska? By John Suter Everyone in the world by now sees what the Russians are doing to the Ukrainians.  The Ukrainians can either submit to Russian rule or have their cities pounded into sand. 

What country will the Russians take over next?  That country will have to make a choice.  Submit to Russian rule or have their cities pounded into sand. - More...
Monday PM - March 07, 2022
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AMHS TO PRINCE RUPERT - SENATE BILL 170 By Mary Lynne Dahl - Heads up, Southeast Alaska! The House and Senate of the State of Alaska are considering a bill to reform and fund our Alaska Marine Highway System. The details are currently being considered, argued and lobbied for and against, as usual. The legislation is labeled Senate Bill (SB) 170.

Unfortunately, reform of the AMHS has been a topic of discussion in the Alaska legislature for about 40 years, without ever resulting in a satisfactory plan of action to fix the many problems in our ferry system. AMHS is so mismanaged and underfunded now that it is on the verge of a permanent collapse. This current discussion on SB 170 may be the last chance we have to save the ferry system that Southeast Alaska so desperately needs to survive and grow. - More...
Wednesday AM - March 02, 2022

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2022 Southeast Conference Mid-Session By Austin Otos - The Ketchikan Gateway Borough recently traveled to Juneau for the Southeast Conference Mid-Session. This is an economic summit designed to highlight the growth of Southeast Alaska. Several local organizations strongly represented Ketchikan at the event, including: Alaska Marine Lines, Tessa Axelson (Alaska Forest Association), Tongass Federal Credit Union, Deborah Hayden (economic developer), Ketchikan Indian Community, Ward Cove Group, Julie Sande (Commissioner, Alaska Department of Commerce), and Jack Finnegan (Spruce Root Grant recipient). Many entities from our community attend the conference in order to advocate for economic development.  - More...
Wednesday AM - March 02, 2022

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Forces Into Western Ukraine By Donald Moskowitz - Since the Russians are essentially occupying eastern Ukraine, and are attacking Kyiv from the north, east and south, maybe NATO military forces with U.S. support should move into western Ukraine to prevent Russia from completely overrunning Ukraine. Air cover would have to be provided for the ground forces.

This would allow Ukrainian civilians to remain in Ukraine, and it could provide an alternate Ukrainian government seat of power if Kyiv is taken by the Russians. The presence of NATO and U.S. military forces in western Ukraine would also provide leverage to get the Russians out of eastern Ukraine since NATO and the U.S. could agree to pull its forces out of western Ukraine as part of a negotiated settlement. - More...
Wednesday AM - March 02, 2022
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KETCHIKAN ROADS? By David G Hanger - There’s an old saying from down south that you can tell how corrupt a county is by the condition of its roads.

Road maintenance and replacement is a routine problem that requires scheduling, planning, and budgeting to pay for it. Here only when it reaches the point of crisis is it even considered, if then. Fire this bunch of worthless morons who cannot maintain the infrastructure they are paid to manage rather than letting it go to hell, and kick the worthless elected officials playing ‘pretend’ right out the door after them. - More...
Monday AM - February 28, 2022

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Alaska’s Students Must Learn to “Read by Nine” Now – Not in Nine Years By Quinn Townsend, Bethany Marcum, Kymyona Burk, and Madeleine Ashour - An entire decade. That’s how long Alaska’s public schools have ranked in the bottom five states for fourth-grade reading, regardless of income level. The pandemic has only exacerbated the struggles of Alaska’s students. All of our children deserve the best lives possible, and they need to be strong readers to succeed in today’s world. Regrettably, Alaska’s public schools are failing to teach our children to read.

Learning to read before the age of nine (typically fourth grade) is imperative for our children. If we fail to prioritize learning to read, so that our children can read to learn, long-term implications on our economy and the fabric of Alaska are unavoidable. Students who cannot read by the end of the third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school; high school dropouts make up 75 percent of citizens receiving food stamps and 90 percent of the Americans on welfare. Nearly 85 percent of teenagers in the juvenile justice system cannot read to learn and seven out of ten adult prisoners cannot read above a fourth-grade level.

Some in Alaska simply call for more education funding. But Alaska already spends more per capita on education than the majority of states. Look what that money has paid for – the bottom of the educational barrel, so to speak. Clearly, throwing more money at public schools is not the answer.

A strong reading initiative, such as Read by Nine, could make the difference. Read by Nine starts by ensuring kindergartners know the ABCs and the sounds they make. Throughout early elementary school, teachers continue this focus and rely on research-based methods, until by third grade each student can read with ease, understand the material and think critically. Easy-to-use diagnostic tests are used to help teachers identify which students are having difficulties and what solutions will help them. For those students, a series of interventions is provided, such as one-on-one tutoring, and at-home support from kindergarten through third grade. We want each Alaskan child entering fourth grade to do so with the confidence and skills they need to learn and succeed. - More...
Monday AM - February 28, 2022
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Russia Threatens World Peace By Donald Moskowitz - Alan Dowd chronicles the Russian threat to world peace in the February 2022 edition of The American Legion Magazine. I quote and paraphrase from the article.

From its beginning in 1918 the Russian Communists led by Lenin and then Stalin sought to achieve power and control populations by intimidation, brutality and death. "Lenin murdered 6 million people and Stalin three times as many. During Stalin's reign from 1925 to 1953 Communism spread to Eastern Europe, China, North Korea, Vietnam and Cuba. President Reagan referred to the USSR as the "evil empire" and President Eisenhower stated the Soviet government believed in the "force of huge armies, subversion, and rule of neighboring nations.""

Today, Putin is trying to bring back the USSR to its former size with confrontation in the Ukraine. He annexed the Ukrainian Crimea eight years ago and is now poised to take all of Ukraine. NATO, the United States and other countries must stand up against Putin and deter him with economic sanctions and force if necessary. Otherwise, the free world could be faced with threats to other former Soviet bloc European countries as Putin tries to reestablish the Russian empire. - More...
Monday AM - February 28, 2022

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