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June 04, 2006

Front Page Photo by Tom Thompson

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Ketchikan: Forest Service Releases Traitors Cove Draft EIS - The Ketchikan Misty-Fiords Ranger District has released the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Traitors Cove Timber Sale project.

The preferred alternative would involve the harvest of approximately 18 million board feet of timber from 973 acres on northwest Revillagigedo Island.

"This project is part of our ongoing effort to help local family-owned businesses and support the resource-dependent communities of southeast Alaska," said Ketchikan Misty-Fiords District Ranger Lynn Kolund.

Public hearings to accept subsistence testimony regarding the Traitors Cove project are slated for 3 p.m. June 17 at the Saxman Community Theater. - More...
Sunday - June 04, 2006

Alaska: After space junk goes up, it must come down By NED ROZELL - One winter night not too long ago, an Interior musher saw a fireball blazing through the sky "like a flaming Nolan Ryan fastball."

As a baseball fan, I liked his comparison. But that can't be the explanation for the blue flash that lit up the sky. Nolan Ryan retired years ago.

To track down the real cause of the burst of light and the accompanying boom, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner writer Mary Beth Smetzer called the U.S. Space Command at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo. A staffer told her the light show was not the result of anything manmade.

Other space-watchers told her a meteorite probably lit up the sky when it entered Earth's atmosphere and glowed from the sudden friction of air molecules. The meteorite, a fragment of some heavenly body, probably caused a sonic boom as it whistled toward interior Alaska faster than the speed of sound.

That's a good explanation, but I wondered how the people at U.S. Space Command could be so sure our celestial visitor wasn't a piece of old rocket or satellite sucked in by Earth's gravity. Space is crowded with working and non-working satellites, rocket stages containing empty fuel tanks and electrical controls, and other such rubbish. Do the sky watchers at Space Command keep track of it all? - More...
Sunday - June 04, 2006

Health - Fitness: Why we're sleepy after meals By LEE BOWMAN - That after-meal desire for a nap is as natural for humans as it is for lions or lap dogs.

Scientists have pinpointed for the first time how the sugar in food turns off the brain cells that keep us awake and makes us crave a siesta after a big meal.

"It has been known for a while that people and animals can become sleepy and less active after a meal, but the brain signals responsible for this were poorly understood," said Dennis Burdakov, a researcher at the University of Manchester in England who led the study published this week in the journal Neuron.

Working with specially engineered mice, Burdakov's team demonstrated exactly how glucose blocks or "inhibits" the brain cells that make orexins, tiny proteins that regulate our state of consciousness. - More...
Sunday - June 04, 2006

Medical training underway when
medical emergency occurs
Jay-hawk helicopter airlifted the patient off the Matanuska and flew him to a hospital in Juneau.
Photo courtesy Guardian Flight

Ketchikan: Medical training underway when medical emergency occurs - The Alaska Marine Highway System and Guardian Flight worked together to respond to a medical emergency aboard the M/V Matanuska while the ferry was transiting between Petersburg and Juneau last Wednesday.

Guardian Flight paramedic Jason Cerovac was aboard the Matanuska to provide "cardiac arrest" medical training to Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) crews when a passenger traveling on the same ship suffered a heart attack.

Cerovac and the Matanuska Bartender Chelsea Ballinger immediately began early CPR, defibrillation and cardiac medications and the 77-year-old victim regained a pulse. Two other AMHS employees also assisted. The Matanuska Master, Capt. Larry Walters, radioed to the Coast Guard and a Jay-hawk helicopter airlifted the patient off the vessel and flew him to a hospital in Juneau. - More...
Sunday - June 04, 2006

Man, dog rescued after plane crash
A Cessna 182 lies crumpled in the grass near a landing strip on Montague Island, southwest of Valdez.
Official Coast Guard photo courtesy of Air Station Support Facility Cordova

Southeast Alaska: Man, dog rescued after plane crash - A man and his dog are safe Friday evening after the Coast Guard rescued them following a plane crash on Montague Island in Alaska.

While making his approach to a grassy Montague Island landing strip located southwest of Valdez, the pilot of a Cessna 182 experienced sudden engine failure. The craft's nose wheel caught hard in the ground, and his plane flipped hard over.

Both the pilot and his lone companion, a search and rescue dog in-training buckled safely into the next seat, were able to evacuate the cockpit of the Cessna.  - More...
Sunday - JUne 04, 2006


Fish Factor: Salmon baby food, an idea whose time has come? By LAINE WELCH - Cruise the baby food aisles of any American supermarket and you'll see jars of beef, chicken, lamb, eggs - every kind of protein except fish. That could soon change if an initiative by Alaska food scientists and the seafood industry is successful.

Fueled by $443,000 in federal funding from the Alaska Fisheries Development Foundation, a project is underway at the University of Alaska Fisheries Industrial Technology Center at Kodiak to create baby food made from salmon. AFDF is an industry based non-profit created in 1978 to help provide a bridge between fisheries research and the marketplace.

"Starting last year we began developing two prototype products - a pate form for infants and a chunk style food for toddlers made from pink and/or sockeye salmon, with or without fish oil additives. We may also use ground up salmon bone as a source for organic calcium," said FITC director, Dr. Scott Smiley. Another project will focus on using salmon roe as a baby food ingredient.

Smiley said it will be two or three years before the salmon products are ready to hand off to baby food manufacturers. But that is something that is beyond the realm of science. "We can tell seafood processors what they need to do to make a product that is 100 percent pure salmon and meets specific nutritional standards. It's up to them to sell the idea to baby food manufacturers, and to market researchers to try and make it fly in the market place," Smiley added.

Smiley displayed jars of seafood baby food from Japan adorned with labels showing colorful pictures of flounders and cod. He said infant formulas throughout Asia also contain fish oils to meet minimum requirements for omega three fatty acid levels. With all the health positives surrounding fish, why is the same nutrition not available to American babies?

"We can't get it past the gate-keepers. Parents just seem to have a bias against fish," was the response ten years ago by Gerber spokesperson Nancy Lindner. That attitude holds true today. "At this time, Gerber does not manufacture a baby food containing fish. The selection of products we offer is determined in large part by the preferences of parents," was the reply to a query at Gerber's consumer questions line. (Other companies did not respond.)

One baby food company expressed concern over the "odor" of processing fish at their manufacturing plants, said AFDF director Bob Pawlowski. To that end, AFDF has invited food scientists from major baby food makers to visit processing plants next month in Kodiak and one other Alaska community. "We want to show them that we have the most healthful, all natural salmon in the world with no bio-accumulation issues of contaminants or impurities. We will try and convince them that we can produce it and they can distribute it," Pawlowski said. He and Dr. Smiley have already scheduled follow up meetings in August with research and development staff at baby food companies headquartered in Urbana, Illinois. - More...
Sunday - June 04, 2006



letter Battle Field By Sharyl Whitesides - Saturday
letter KIC annual meeting By David Jensen - Friday
letter Big Oil Companies By David Blasczyk - Friday
letter A call for action By Mike Isaac - Friday
letter Evacuation Plan? By Laurie Price - Friday
letter MV Carmelita By Dave Kiffer - Thursday
letter Adah Sparhawk Young: Woman Pioneer By Peggy Hendricks Mackey - Thursday
letter Minutemen and their mission By Timothy Droke - Thursday
letterThe Salvation Army in Darkest Ketchikan By Richard Zellmer - Wednesday
letterJackson Fire Relief Fund By Pete Arntzen - Wednesday
letter Ketchikan Heroes
By Janice Jackson - Wednesday
letter Encourage Congress to establish an ALS registry By Linda Kreider - Wednesday
letterWhat to do with our unresponsive elected officials is the question! By Byron "Chilly" Whitesides - Tuesday
letter Pinched NERVE By Virginia E. Atkinson - Tuesday
letter RE: Balancing Patriots and Privacy By Glen Thompson - Tuesday
letter Contractors in Iraq By William B. Boyce - Tuesday
letter The Military-Industrial Complex By Tom Proebsting - Tuesday
letter Minutemen being compared to Gunsmoke, or Bonanza By Kay Gettle Lopez - Monday
letter What do we do with illegal immigrants? By Mike Harpold - Sunday
letter Memorial Day By Sen. Ted Stevens - Sunday
letter Paintball Field is NOT a Target Shooting Range By Bobbie McCreary - Sunday
letter RE: Minutemen/Border Patrol By Walt Bolling - Sunday
letter Balancing Patriots and Privacy By Mark Beatty - Sunday
letter More Viewpoints/ Letters
letter Publish A Letter

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Washington Calling: Pentagon pink slips ... e-mail alert ... secrecy eased By LANCE GAY - Since lawmakers left Washington for a Memorial Day vacation without resolving an impasse over pork-barrel spending stuffed into an emergency spending package for the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts, the Army says it has no choice but to begin pinching pennies and preparing pink slips.

With the Pentagon spending $10 billion a month on the global war on terrorism, Army Vice Chief of Staff Richard Cody warns that the service will run out of cash next month, and has ordered subordinates to immediately freeze all new hiring of civilians.

If there is no speedy resolution to the congressional impasse, Cody says pink slips will be handed out to temporary employees June 15, and by July 1, the military will have to suspend contracts, hold up promotions, ban further spending with government-issued spending cards, and release contract employees who now are responsible for maintaining base security and running military restaurants.


Employees take note: more employers today are reading your e-mail than before.

A survey of 300 large companies by Proofpoint and Forrester Research found 38 percent have hired staff to read e-mail, and nearly a third have fired employees for improper e-mail use.

One reason employers are concerned about what their e-mail messages contain - an estimated 1 of 5 e-mail messages contains insider information that entangles businesses in costly legal disputes. Many companies said they have been forced by court cases or regulatory authorities to turn over their e-mail records in the last year.


More than a third of the 774,000 illegal immigrants caught over the last three years have been released because the Department of Homeland Security has run out of beds to house them and personnel to watch over them, the agency's inspector general says.

The inspector general says that while the apprehension of illegal immigrants increased 19 percent over the last three years, the process of freeing apprehended immigrants is encouraging more illegal immigration since immigrants know they can work in the United States until their immigration status is adjudicated through the courts. More than 62 percent of those apprehended and released eventually receive final orders of removal, but the whereabouts of most of them is unknown.


Topping the list of must-pass legislation GOP leaders want: more tax cuts.

After President Bush signed into law a $70 billion capital gains and dividend tax cut last month, Congress is putting together another $23 billion package that includes extending popular tax write-offs for state and local taxes, plus research and development tax credits and other business tax breaks that expired Jan. 1.


In spite of skyrocketing prices for gasoline, retailers are expecting a modest increase in spending on Father's Day this June 18.

Market researcher BIGresearch anticipates that $9 billion will be spent on this Father's Day, compared to $8.2 billion last year, with the average consumer spending $88.80. The average consumer spent $122.16 on Mom for Mother's Day last month.

No surprise, but ties remain popular, along with golf clubs and barbecue sets - but about 27 percent of consumers said they plan to give the old man a gift certificate so he can buy what he wants. More than two-thirds of dutiful children plan to buy Pop a card. - More...
Sunday - June 04, 2006

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