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Michael Carey

Richard Mauer's account of Marti Cox's exchange with reporters Thursday is excellent. As a columnist, I just want to add a few things.

Marti Cox was incredibly poised as she talked about the militia trial, her beliefs, her husband and her two children. She is not a practiced public speaker like her husband and took great care to express herself clearly and precisely. This made her seem at some points hesitant, but from what I saw, she answered all the reporters' questions except one. She wouldn't comment on the domestic violence charge that brought her husband into court for the first time...

Michael Carey

Sitting in federal court watching the militiaman trial, I wondered: What advice would Joe Vogler have had for the three Fairbanksans charged with conspiring to kill federal officials?

Gold miner, real-estate developer, founder of the Alaska Independence Party Vogler wasn't the first to plant hostility toward the federal government along the banks of the Chena River. Uncle Sam was Public Enemy No. 1 long before Vogler arrived in the Interior during World War II. But Vogler, a master of using the media to attack government bureaucrats, elected officials and other policy makers whose decisions rubbed him wrong, reaped a hardy crop of anti-government rage from angry followers who idolized him...

Michael Carey

The three Fairbanks militia men now on trial in Anchorage often met in local restaurants to scheme and vent. It occurred to me that an enterprising entrepreneur could offer a tour of their favorite dining establishments and provide samples from the specials on the menu.

* Denny's. Where a Common law trial found Schaeffer Cox not guility of a DV offense and a weapons offense. Special: The Acquittal Slam.

* The Hometown Cafe. Where the Lonnie Vernon and his wife Karen discussed selling Mrs. Vernon's jewelry to buy hand grenades. Special: Pineapple Pizza.

* Sourdough Sam's. Where an informant planned to meet the Vernons immediately before the FBI take down March 10. Special: Toast...

Michael Carey

About 8:15 every morning of the Alaska Militiamen trial at the federal courthouse in downtown Anchorage, the three defendants are brought into the courtroom under guard. The men enter through a door in the back of the room. This is same door Judge Robert Bryan uses minutes later on his way to assuming the bench.

Schaeffer Cox, 26, Coleman Barney, 37, and Lonnie Vernon, 56, are each under the control of an individual escort, each in a set of handcuffs. The three, accused of conspiring to murder federal officials and various weapons violations, are walked to chairs next to their lawyers and released...

Michael Carey

The major league baseball season has begun. Poring over the box scores, I am reminded the game has been part of my life almost 60 years.

I discovered baseball in the Bronx in 1953 as an 8-year-old. My mother, my sister and I were more or less living in exile. Our house in Fairbanks burned in October 1952. The Korean War had created a housing shortage in Alaska, and my parents agreed mom and the kids would live with her brother in New York while my Dad worked Bush construction jobs to save money for a new home. We were gone from March 1953 to July 1954...

Michael Carey

Sean Parnell should follow his own maxim -- Choose Respect.

Choose Respect in his debate with the Senate over state oil taxes, which the governor insists are so burdensome they hinder exploration, limit development and cost Alaskans jobs.

Parnell, formerly Captain Zero, has re-cast himself as the tough guy in this drama. The role is easier for him to play with the North Slope producers, his fourth branch of government, advising him on the script, which has been stripped of the word negotiate...

Michael Carey

Back in the old days when Alaska had summer, I got up on a bright, warm morning and headed for the Daily News on foot.

I had been reading a memoir by a prominent New York writer and pieces of it were rattling around my brain. The writer was born and raised in small-town Illinois and wrote at length about his ancestors who settled there after the Civil War.

The ancestors were deeply religious. Many followed the teachings of the famed evangelist Alexander Campbell, a pioneer of the giant revival meeting...

Michael Carey

Ron Paul was in Anchorage Sunday evening. He spoke to an overflow crowd of 1,200 in a third floor ballroom of the Dena'ina Center. Most of those in attendance were under 40 and casually if not roughly dressed. Some young couples brought small children.

Paul, casually dressed himself in a bright red shirt, was far better alone at the lectern than he has been in debate with other Republican presidential candidates. The debate format left Paul little time to develop his beliefs -- and he was frequently marginalized by moderators who wanted to highlight the contrast between Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum and Romney...

Michael Carey

Peter De Vries, who wrote for The New Yorker, said reality is what won't go away no matter how hard you try to make it go away. For Americans in 2012, what won't go away is the growing income disparity between rich and poor and the decline in American social mobility.

In 2012, if you are born poor, you probably will die poor. Europe, to the astonishment of American conservatives, has greater social mobility than the United States, according to academic and government research.

I know conservatives despise the '60s, for them a decade of self-indulgence, narcissism, protest and dope that wounded a great country. But the '60s is the last time Americans had a serious discussion of the poor and social mobility...

Michael Carey

It had been a tough day for Jennifer Prater, but Jennifer, pale and tired, looked like she had known other tough days. A small, thirty-something redhead, Jennifer is one of three plaintiffs in a wages-and-hours lawsuit she and two other dancers, strippers, filed against their former employers in federal court. They are asking for $324,000 in back pay and other compensation.

Jennifer was on the witness stand Tuesday -- and on the receiving end of cross- examination by Bradley Shafer, attorney for the defendants, the Crazy Horse Saloon and Fantasies on 5th Avenue...

Michael Carey