Alaska Ear

The divine appendage

October 25, 2008 

QUOTABLE ... Best one-liner from the Stevens' trial closing arguments, from prosecutor Brenda Morris:

"He testified here on Friday that his wife explained herself quite well. That woman, Catherine Stevens, is still recovering from the bus he threw her under."

OUR GUYS ... As usual, the candidate appearances on KAKM's election series "Running" have provided no end of entertainment, uhhhh, education for voters. Ear touched briefly last week on Daniel DeNardo's concerns about the Luciferian Kommunist Korporate Kapitalism takeover of House District 31.

This week, Darling Don Young, Congressman for All Alaskans who Voted for Him, warmed Ear's lobe with his classic rejection of "negatism" in campaigns, and his prediction that John McCain won't be able to "subtain" his promised veto of earmarks, should he win the presidency.

INSIDER INFO ... Word from the federal pen in Oregon is that Tom Anderson is playing drums in a prisoner country band. Earwigs report that during his absence from Alaska, former legislator Pete Kelly (brother of Mike) is filling in for Tom on drums for Spank the Dog, the band that normally includes Anderson, John Bitney and Paul Fuhs.

Tom's expected release is sometime in 2010.

QUIET TIME ... With the election closing in, Juneau earwigs say jockeying for position in the new legislative leadership has slowed down -- although the election seems unlikely to change anything important. Mike Chenault is still the rumor mill's favorite for Speaker of the House, but word is he hasn't nailed down the necessary votes yet and Beth Kerttula is working on a coalition just in case. Chairmanship of the Legislative Council returns to the House next year and it looks like that's where current Speaker John Harris will land, with John Coghill staying at Rules.

As usual, the Senate is much lower-key about the whole thing. Earwigs say a coalition looks likely with Gary Stevens as President, Lyman Hoffman and Bert Stedman chairing Finance and Johnny Ellis repeating at Rules.

Of course, darlings, until the votes are taken it's all just talk.

IF IT LOOKS LIKE A DUCK ... Fired Public Safety Commish Walt Monegan was working the crowds at the AFN convention this past week. And supporters were handing out "Friends of Walt" buttons with his picture. It's a little early to announce for 2010 races, but . . .

BYE-BYE BUY ... The Interior Democrats ran a fundraiser auction Wednesday in Fairbanks and one of the items for sale was a bottle of Northern Lights Reserve 2005 California Cabernet Sauvgnon, personally signed by Ted Stevens. No, Ted isn't suddenly supporting Democrats. Don Gray tells Ear he bought the wine at "the tail end" of a silent auction at Jay Ramras' Pike's Waterfront Lodge last spring and was somewhat chagrined to discover the auction was for the Republican women's club. (Don is a Democratic party official and that's his story.)

Anyhow, perhaps as penance, he donated Ted's wine to the Dems and suggested it be used to toast Mark Begich's victory or drown one's sorrows in defeat. Don reports Marilyn Russell of Fairbanks bought it for $125. He then paid her $25 for a one-fifth share, so he can toast too.

BEEN THERE, SEEN IT ALL ... If you're planning a visit to the City on the Edge of Nowhere later this month, you can catch former ADN reporter and Anchorage Press editor Robert Meyerowitz giving a talk called, "Can you see the real me -- covering politics from Panama to Palin." Meyerowitz is at UAF this year as the Snedden visiting journalism professor. The talk is at the Thompson Center, Oct. 29 at 7 p.m.

KUDOS ... Earwigs say that, among those soon to be announced as this year's YWCA Women of Achievement winners, are Judge Stephanie Rhodes, Mary Mystrom, Patty Ginsburg and Helen Howarth.

OOPS ... The 2008 "Values Voter Guide" sent out by the Alaska Family Council, a Christian organization, has run into some trouble requiring a follow-up message:

"Questions for State candidates are listed on the front of the Voter Guide. Inside, because of space limitations, we simply put the subject of the question," the clarification explains.

"As an example, Question #3 asks 'Do you support or oppose a state law that would ban partial-birth abortion?' On the inside of the Voter Guide, we simply put Partial Birth Abortion as the header. If a candidate's response is SUPPORT, that means they support a state law that would ban partial- birth abortions. Some readers have incorrectly assumed that a SUPPORT response under the Partial-Birth Abortion header means the candidate supports partial-birth abortion ..."

NO LIMIT ... Having concluded that fish don't get no sympathy because they're slimy and unattractive, PETA has launched a campaign to "re-brand" them. Fish will now be known as "sea kittens" says a tongue-in-cheek interactive Web site that invites you to dress up a fish and give it a name. The theory is, fewer people will want to drive a metal hook through the lip of a cute animal. Check it out at www.peta.org/Sea_Kittens/

VERBATIM ... Only eight more days. In case you've missed the campaign, here's a synopsis:

"The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest (we) become bankrupt. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance."

Cicero - 55 BC.

TIME MACHINE ... For more vintage campaign ads, Alaska Moving Image (AMIPA) is posting old Alaska political TV spots on YouTube. Definitely fun for junkies. There's a Brad Bradley one, and a Pat Rodey that are classics. See: www.youtube.com/user/AlaskaMovingImage

Compiled by Sheila Toomey. E-mail ear@adn.com. Find Ear online at adn.com/ear.

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