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SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska
November 25, 2005

Front Page Photo

A Look Back...
U.S. Coast Guard Station, Ketchikan - 1947
Creator: Haddon, E. P. - Photo courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

National: U.S. already planning Iraq pullout, lawmakers say By KEVIN DIAZ - Amid raucous debate in Congress about an exit strategy from Iraq, U.S. commanders on the ground have already launched plans to close bases and withdraw troops in the coming year, according to two congressmen who returned from Iraq this week.

"They wouldn't put a hard date on it, but clearly the planning is at a very mature level," Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., said. "We can shrink down the number of bases as we shrink down the number of Americans."

Rep. Mark Kennedy, R-Minn., who was with Kline in Iraq, said that in some places the turnover is already in progress. "They have a planned turnover process where American troops have already pulled back from some of the smaller bases." - More..
Friday - November 25, 2005

Alaska: Knudsen to Chair Workers' Compensation Appeals Commission - A state assistant attorney general who has practiced workers' compensation law in Alaska for more than two decades will chair the new Alaska Workers' Compensation Appeals Commission.

Governor Frank H. Murkowski appointed Assistant Attorney General Kristin S. Knudsen, 53, to serve a five-year term as the commission chair last week. The commission, which was a part of the workers' compensation legislative reforms proposed by Murkowski last session, hears appeals from the Alaska Workers' Compensation Board that were formerly reviewed by the Alaska Superior Court. - More...
Friday - November 25, 2005

Alaska: Agreement Reached To Reducing Risks of Fraudulent Wire Transfers - Alaska Attorney General David Márquez announced recently that Western Union Financial Services, Inc., has entered into an Agreement with Alaska and 46 other States and the District of Columbia, in response to concerns about the use of the company's wire transfer services by fraudulent telemarketers. Under the Agreement, Western Union will, among other things, fund an $8.1 million national consumer awareness program and set out very prominent consumer warnings on the forms used by consumers to wire money.

"Many people who engage in telemarketing fraud rely on wire transfers," said Márquez. "Because wire transfers are a fast and efficient mechanism to transfer funds, many perpetrators of these types of frauds are based in other countries." - More...
Friday - November 25, 2005

PhotoAlaska: 63-Year-old cutter slated to be decommissioned - The Coast Guard announced last week that the 63-year-old cutter Storis, its longest-serving cutter, is proposed to be decommissioned in 2007 as part of the service's ongoing modernization of its fleet of aged and obsolete cutters.

Storis' decommissioning will make room for the 378-foot cutter Munro, currently homeported in Alameda, Calif., which is scheduled to move to Kodiak in 2007.

"Storis has been a gallant workhorse for the Coast Guard since World War II and has earned an honored place in Coast Guard history," said Vice Adm. Harvey Johnson, Commander, Coast Guard Pacific Area. "Her departure from active service heralds a new era marked by our Deepwater modernization project that will bring us three new classes of faster and more capable cutters as well as new and more capable aircraft." - More...
Friday - November 25, 2005

World: Global warming doubles rate of ocean rise - Global ocean levels are rising twice as fast today as they were 150 years ago, and human-induced warming appears to be the culprit, say scientists at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, and collaborating institutions.

While the speed at which the ocean is rising - almost two millimeters per year today compared to one millimeter annually for the past several thousand years - may not be fodder for the next disaster movie, it affirms scientific concerns of accelerated global warming. - More...
Friday - November 25, 2005



letter Bridges to our future By Robin Craviotto - Thursday
letter Opportunity presented By John Stewart - Thursday
letter Slanted picture of Alaska painted By Carl Thompson - Thursday
letter Free and open expression of opinions By Walt Bolling - Thursday
letterThe earmarks for the bridge are gone By Patrick Jirschele - Tuesday PM
letterAmericans coming into Canada for All Native Tournament By Roberta Aiken - Tuesday PM
letter Criticizing our commanders... OH, YAWN! By David Hanger - Tuesday PM
letter Those who criticize our commanders By Erin Bellon - Tuesday PM
letter"Why not me?" By Brenda Bratley - Monday am
letter THANK YOU By Ken Levy - Monday am
letter Glenn/Metzenbaum debate By David Landis- Monday am
letterTo Those Who Criticize... and Patriotism By Gregory Fast- Monday am
letter The Bridge Battle By Don Hoff Jr.- Monday am
letter Better come up with another plan By Robert McRoberts- Monday am
letter More Viewpoints/ Letters
letter Publish A Letter

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November 2005
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Columns - Commentary

Michael Reagan: A GOP Thanksgiving Turkey - Just in time for Thanksgiving, warm-hearted Republicans in the House of Representatives have come up with a genuine turkey for the nation's taxpayers to swallow - a bill to ladle out a whopping $830 million to millions of Americans to pay for converting their TV sets to receive high-tech digital transmissions.

A bill passed on Friday before the members ran off to spend Thanksgiving at home and brag about how they are cutting spending (while bringing home the federal bacon to their districts), requires TV broadcasters to switch to all-digital transmissions by December 2008.

Some 21 million households are dependent on free, over-the-air TV, and will need converter boxes to keep receiving their television signals after the switch to all-digital TV transmission. The Associated Press says that cable and satellite customers will not be affected. - More...
Thursday - November 24, 2005

Martin Schram: The Can-Do Coalition - Here in Hate City, Washington's partisans plunged themselves this month to record depths of shame-and-blame name-calling over war and peace.

Things got so bitter in the nation's capital last week that you couldn't tell the leaders from the wing nuts. Indeed, the 16 blocks of Pennsylvania Avenue that separate the Congress from the White House reverberate with sounds ranging from road rage to Rove rage.

But back in the congressional cloakrooms and occasionally on television news, you could hear a wisp of rational response and even problem-solving discourse, voiced by thoughtful adults who are also politicians. They stand out because they seem more interested in reining abuses by their party's leaders and working with, rather than pummeling, the other side. - More...
Thursday - November 24, 2005

Clifford May: Memo to Murtha - Before I say anything else, Congressman Murtha, let me thank you - for your long public service in Washington and, before that, in Vietnam.

And let me commend you, too, for sparking an honest debate. Until now, what has passed for debate on Iraq has been mostly slander - for example, calling President Bush a liar and questioning his patriotism. Yes, questioning his patriotism, because anyone who would lie to get America into a war for reasons unrelated to national security would not be a patriot. He'd be a traitor.

I ask you, sir: Has such a vicious charge ever before been leveled at an American president in a time of war - or even a time of peace?

But you have not taken this low road. Instead, you have said you believe the war in Iraq "cannot be won" and that "it's time to bring the troops home." This is a discussion worth having. - More...
Thursday - November 24, 2005

James Glassman: Defuse the ticking tax bombs - The first rule in government, as in medicine, is the Hippocratic one: Do no harm. Unfortunately, Congress is about to do severe harm to the U.S. economy if it fails to act in the next few months to stop three huge automatic tax increases.

Let me shift metaphors. The increases - 133 percent for the rate on dividend income, 33 percent for the rate on capital gains and what amounts to an infinite increase in the coming rate on what you pass on to your heirs - comprise a ticking time bomb.

The dividend and capital gains rates were reduced to 15 percent in 2003. The estate (also called death or inheritance) tax got an overhaul in 2001, with gradual reductions over 10 years and complete elimination set for 2010. - More...
Thursday - November 24, 2005

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