Paul Jenkins

It is hard not to chuckle when you read political satirist P.J. O’Rourke’s observation about the nation’s health care system as Bill and Hillary monkeyed with it: “If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it's free.”

He could have been talking about Obamacare or Medicaid, the latest break-the-bank effort to “fix” the system. Since 2010, Barack Obama has lied to Americans about his signature achievement -- taking the first, long step toward socialized medicine in an unending, unconstitutional game of three-card monte...

Paul Jenkins

On the heels of Gov. Bill Walker’s three-day “Building a Sustainable Future” shindig in Fairbanks to hash out details of Alaska’s fiscal problems and possible solutions, many of us are wondering when Alaskans will get around to connecting the dots.

As some attendees pointed out, most of those at the gathering were older, politically involved Alaskans or members of Walker’s transition team or kibitzers representing government or education interests. They spent, if the press got it right, much time on taxes -- the left calls them “revenue options” -- to close Alaska’s budget gap...

Paul Jenkins

Watching frazzled legislators don Xtratufs and slosh around in puddles of red ink as they grapple with Alaska’s most recent budget dilemma -- Cadillac wants, Kia dough -- has lost its allure.

It was amusing initially, but the comedic value is, well, kaput! The real fun is slated this weekend when members of Gov. Bill Walker’s transition team and other Alaskans arrive in Fairbanks. He invited them for a three-day budget gabfest to yak about, among other things, “revenue options.”...

Paul Jenkins

At first, off in the distance, it sounded for all the world as if the portals of Hades had cracked open and fiery souls were scrambling to daylight, splashing across the Styx, screaming in pain, howling, rending the cosmos with otherworldly shrieks and groans.

But no, it was just Democratic Alaska legislators facing the grim reality that their extortion racket just might be cashing out...

Paul Jenkins

Stop the presses! Those nasty ol’ Alaska Republicans are at it again, wrecking government, sowing ruin, keeping poor people down and coddling the evil oil industry -- at least that’s the agitprop peddled by Democrats and their union pals as they try to justify hijacking the legislative process for their own political ends.

What the House minority Democrats want -- and cannot publicly admit -- is House GOP majority agreement to spend about $80 million in savings Alaska cannot spare on things Alaska does not really need, before they will vote to tap the Constitutional Budget Reserve and balance next year’s budget...

Paul Jenkins

There was no traffic in the quiet “SoNo district” neighborhood when my truck rolled to a halt at a four-way stop the other morning. As my foot came off the brake and I started forward, there was a flash from the right, and in a nanosecond a short-haired woman on a bicycle blew into the intersection, right in front of me -- with a sneer on her face, no less -- at speed, without stopping, zipping along on the wrong side of the road.

How I missed her -- or she missed me -- is anybody’s guess. Had I accelerated instead of slowly rolling into the intersection, she would have been toast. It was simple luck. I honked. She flipped me off and kept going. Ah, I thought, another in a long line of idiot bike riders...

Paul Jenkins

As the state stares down the barrel of perhaps a $4 billion budget deficit, it is beyond baffling that anybody -- even a liberal clinging desperately to freebie medical care as some sort of talismanic human right -- could justify adding even one person to Alaska’s Medicaid rolls, much less 40,000, as Gov. Bill Walker wants.

Walker is hectoring Republican lawmakers at every turn to expand a program already plagued by fraud, abuse and lack of controls. It must be reformed simply to survive -- much less be expanded. Forget the touchy-feely nonsense the left is peddling. Alaska cannot afford Medicaid expansion...

Paul Jenkins

Turnout, if not truckloads of cash, will decide this week’s Anchorage mayoral contest. Ethan Berkowitz, former Democratic legislator, has the lion’s share. His opponent, Amy Demboski, a conservative, has an electorate that largely mirrors her views in many areas.

As important is the question of who supporters of Dan Coffey and Andrew Halcro in the April 7 general election will vote for in Tuesday’s runoff. While both claimed to be Republicans -- Coffey for a few weeks, anyway -- neither has been of much help to Demboski. In fact, Coffey has been downright spiteful. Demboski teed off on him in the general election and it is time for payback...

Paul Jenkins

If the notion of wielding the IRS as a weapon against political enemies or wiretapping the Associated Press does not bother you; if the NSA's pervasive eavesdropping or Barack Obama’s lawless presidency does not make you nuts, what happened in Wisconsin will seem like, well, just a walk in the park.

If all that winds your crank, though, and you wonder what America would look like if some liberal Democrats had their way, take a moment and read David French’s “ Wisconsin’s Shame: ‘I Thought It Was a Home Invasion ,” in the National Review...

Paul Jenkins

Reading through a recent ideological litmus test masquerading as an election Q&A piece grilling mayoral hopefuls Amy Demboski and Ethan Berkowitz, a favorite cartoon came to mind.

Drawn by two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Michel Ramirez , it depicts a short-haired, dumpy frau wearing geeky glasses and a yellow T-shirt emblazoned with “LEFT” in big, red letters. All that is needed to complete the picture is a Subaru station wagon sporting Obama, Begich and Greenpeace bumper stickers.

The caption: “We are opposed to intolerance and anyone who disagrees with us.” Absolutely perfect...

Paul Jenkins

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