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State & National
October 20, 2006
Photo By Chris Wilhelm
The week in review By THOMAS HARGROVE - Pundits see political
tsunami aimed at GOP
Political experts this week
said the anti-incumbent, anti-war, anti-Bush fervor is so strong
that a Democratic takeover of the House is "very likely"
and a flip of leadership in the Senate a real possibility next
month. "Republicans don't seem to be running for office
these days. They look more like they're limping," said Virginia
political-science professor Larry Sabato. Political handicapper
Charlie Cook said conservatives face a category 5 hurricane that
could easily bring a 30-seat gain in the House, twice what Democrats
need to take control. "This is the worst political situation
for the GOP since the Watergate disaster in 1974," Cook
Iraqi violence escalates, U.S.
leaders consider changes
Ten U.S. troops died in firefights
with Iraqi insurgents Tuesday, the highest one-day toll in several
months. The escalating violence in and around Baghdad, up 43
percent since summer, brought glum admissions from military leaders.
"Insurgent elements, the extremists, are pushing back hard,"
Maj. Gen. William Caldwell said. President Bush told the Associated
Press on Friday he would meet with the generals to determine
if policy changes are merited. "We are constantly adjusting
tactics so we can achieve our objectives and right now, it's
tough," Bush said. U.S. forces suffered at least 74 fatalities
North Korea may blink over
North Korea signaled it might
back down from its nuclear showdown with the world Friday, five
days after U.S. officials confirmed the isolated nation had conducted
a small underground nuclear test last week. North Korean leader
Kim Jong Il reportedly apologized to Chinese representatives
for the Oct. 9 nuclear detonation and vowed not to test any more
nuclear devices. "If the U.S. makes a concession to some
degree, we will also make a concession to some degree, whether
it be bilateral talks or six-party talks," Kim was quoted
in the South Korean press as telling a Chinese envoy.
Wisconsin man arrested for
Wisconsin grocery-store clerk
Jake Brahm, 20, was arrested Friday on charges of making hoax
threats on the Internet that seven U.S. football stadiums would
be struck by terrorists using radiological "dirty bombs."
The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security issued a joint
statement that football fans "should be reassured of their
security as they continue to attend sporting events this weekend."
The threat, posted Oct. 12 on "The Friend Society"
Web site, said trucks would deliver radiological bombs Sunday
to stadiums in Atlanta, Miami, Cleveland, Houston, New York,
Seattle and Oakland, Calif.
NBC to cut jobs and pricey
NBC Universal announced Thursday
it will streamline news operations, cut 700 jobs and scale back
its expensive prime-time programming. The changes, meant to cut
$750 million in costs, are more evidence that changing media
habits of the American public are threatening mainstream operations
like the venerable broadcasting company.
The network's struggling 24-hour
cable news channel, MSNBC, will relocate operations to NBC headquarters
at Rockefeller Center in Manhattan and to another NBC facility
in Englewood Cliffs, N.J. NBC Universal's operating profits declined
10 percent during each of the last three quarters.
Retired priest admits misbehavior
A retired Roman Catholic priest
said he fondled former Rep. Mark Foley as a 13-year-old boy and
took naked saunas with him. Officials at the Florida diocese
where Foley grew up is investigating Foley's charge that he was
sexually abused by the Rev. Anthony Mercieca, 69, who retired
to the Maltese island of Gozo. "It was just fondling,"
Mercieca said in a television interview. Meanwhile, the House
ethics committee continued its investigation this week into Republican
leaders' handling of inappropriate communications by Foley with
former House male pages. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006
A 'killer' of a whale
Front Page Photo
By Carl Thompson
'killer' of a whale - Ketchikan resident Robert McRoberts
said that he and Dale Bakkela were getting ready to cut a 350
year old cedar log into boards when McRoberts stopped the work
because he could see a whale within the old log. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006
Fish Factor: First
of its kind fish refuge proposed By Laine Welch - A first
of its kind fish refuge is being proposed to state policy makers
as a way to protect fish habitat in headwaters of Bristol Bay.
It includes lower and upper Talarik Creek and the Koktuli River,
waters that are adjacent to the site of the open pit gold and
copper mine being proposed by Northern Dynasty of Canada.
"The law has been on the
books for a long time that the state Board of Fisheries (BOF)
can establish sanctuaries, reserves or refuges," said George
Matz of Homer, sponsor of Proposal 121. "I chose a refuge
because it allows for consumptive use. Basically, we need some
kind of protection for fish habitat to allow for continuing uses
of commercial, sport and subsistence fishing," he added.
Matz, a retired state policy
analyst and former game board member, said the concept is new
to Alaska. "In the past, refuges have generally been set
aside for both fish and game and included both water and land.
Proposal 121 is specific to state waters and thereby avoids land
use issues," he explained, adding that his request predates
all others for water rights. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006
Telemarketers rebuked ... lobbyists want money back By LISA
HOFFMAN - Take a moment and give thanks to the Federal Trade
Commission for sparing us from yet another telemarketing onslaught.
Two years ago a California
company came up with a way to get around the telemarketing ban
that millions of consumers signed up for when a "do-not-call"
registry was created in 2003.
The firm contended prerecorded
calls should be exempt from that don't-bother-us-anymore rule.
Other marketers joined in, saying taped calls aren't as annoying
as those with a human doing the speaking.
But the FTC disconnected that
argument this month, saying no robo-calls would be allowed unless
the customer consented in writing to receive them.
Lobbyists are lining up to
get their contributions back from the campaign chest of former
Rep. Mark Foley, the Florida GOP lawmaker who fled Congress amidst
a sex scandal involving congressional pages.
When he resigned in September,
Foley had accumulated nearly $2 million in a political action
committee that funneled big bucks to Republican candidates. Now,
it's the contributors with their hands out.
Foley's latest campaign report
shows he already has returned about $25,000, including $7,000
to the National Restaurant Association's PAC and $4,000 to pharmaceutical
giant Eli Lilly. The Hill newspaper reported insurance company
AFLAC has requested its $10,000 back.
But one PAC appears not to
have gotten the message. Instead of asking for a refund, the
National Right to Life Political Action Committee sent Foley
an $820 donation on Wednesday.
Nov. 7 will be the first national
election night in decades without the formidable troika of network
news lions anchoring the returns. Since 2004, CBS's Dan Rather
and NBC's Tom Brokaw have retired, and ABC's Peter Jennings died.
The doctor supply is beginning
to catch up with demand. The Association of American Medical
Colleges reports that first-year enrollment in the nation's medical
schools edged up by about 2.2 percent this year, the second straight
year of an increase in the ranks of freshman medicos.
This trend is a reverse from
one that began in the late 1990s, when talented college students
were more likely to shun the rigors and expense of medical careers,
which were becoming less rewarding thanks to the advent of managed
care. Still, the association says enrollment needs to jump by
30 percent in the next decade to ensure there will enough docs
to care for the nation's aging population. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006
Arts & Entertainment
This Week - This week in Ketchikan the Torch Nights Performing
Arts Series presents Cheryl Wheeler in concert. Singer/songwriter
Cheryl Wheeler graces the Kayhi stage in the first of many fine
performances of the 2006-2007 Torch Nights season. A brilliant
and hilarious storyteller, Wheeler invites the audience of all
ages to find their own lives reflected in the sweet spaces of
her songs. She will be performing Sunday, October 22, 2006 at
7:30pm in the Kayhi Auditorium. Call 225-2211 for more information
and/or to purchase a season ticket. Tickets will be available
in October at TBC, Soho Coho, Madison Hardware, McPherson music
and the Arts Council. Visit Cheryl's website at www.cherylwheeler.com
Wheeler graces the Kayhi stage in the first of many fine performances
of the 2006-2007 Torch Nights season.
Sunday, October 22, 2006 at 7:30pm
The Monthly Grind brings live
local talent to the stage again on Saturday, October 21, 2006
at 7pm at the Saxman Tribal House. Coffee, dessert and fabulous
entertainment all for just $5 for adults, and $1 for kids, buy
a ticket, bring a homemade dessert and get a refund.
Friday Night Insight Programs
at the Southeast Alaska Discovery Center every Friday from 5-7pm.
October 20: "American's Rain Forest: A distance Learning
Adventure" Brooke Hunt and her former 6th grade students
will put on an encore presentation from 2005.
Friends Craft Night: Help make
quilted stars to benefit the new library building fund from 6:00-7:30pm,
Tuesday, October 24. All supplies are provided and no experience
is necessary. Call 225-3331 for more information.
with the Pioneers Home and Boys and Girls Club. These monthly
intergenerational activities take place on the 3rd Saturday of
each month from 1-3pm at the Pioneers Home. This month's theme
is Harvest Month, and seniors and youth are invited to decorate
bird houses and play bingo with Pioneer Home seniors and Boys
and Girls Club youth on Saturday, October 21. All are welcome!
Please call Gretchen at 617-4685 with questions.
Workshops & Classes:
Jewelry making workshop with
Tina Mander! Local jewelry maker Tina Mander will hold a silver
jewelry making workshop on Saturday, November 11 from 1:30pm
- 3pm at Alaska Rose in the Plaza. She would love to share her
passion for silver crafting with artists of all ages and abilities.
To register call 247-4759, $25 fee includes all materials and
Bigfoot Pottery Studio is Moving
to the old Physical Graffiti building, downstairs. Classes and
the studios will be available again in November. Call Erik at
617-2378 for more information. Check here for class availability
Classes at the Totem Heritage
Center: Register for fall classes at the Heritage Center online,
by phone, mail or in person, Monday - Friday, 8am - 5pm 225-5900.Classes
offered -- Fall: Cedar Bark Weaving Intermediate & Advanced
with Diane Douglas-Willard, Carver's Toolmaking & NWC Project
Design with Steve Brown, Beginning Cedar Bark Weaving with Holly
Churchill, Drawing for Carvers with Donald Varnell. Spring: Mixed
Level Ravens tail weaving with Evelyn Vanderhoop, Intro to NWC
Carving with Fred Trout, Coiled Basketry with Carol Douglas,
Mold Making for Carvers with Steven Jackson, Cedar Bark Weaving
Intermediate & Advanced with Diane Douglas-Willard, Doll
Making: NWC Form with Mary Anne Frank.....
Something Interesting to Look
At features the works of Joe Piston at the Mainstay Gallery at
716 Totem Way. Joe works with brightly colored acrylics on large
canvasses that are sure to catch the eye of gallery patrons and
his work will be on display through Friday, October 27, 2006.
The Mainstay Gallery is sponsored by the Ketchikan Area Arts
and Humanities Council, 225-2211.
Metlakatla: Vintage Photographs
is on display now through November 19, 2006 at the Tongass Historical
Museum, 629 Dock Street. This exhibit features more than 100
images detailing the history and peoples of Metlakatla from 1887
to the 1920s. The museum is open Wednesday - Friday from 1-5,
on Saturdays from 10 - 5, and Sundays from 1 - 4. Call the Museum
for more info at 225-5600. - More...
Wednesday - October 18, 2006