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Sitting by the phone waiting for oil companies to call

I read recently that BP experienced a job spill of over 400 employees. Alaskan voters — are you still sitting by the phone waiting for Big Oil to call? Guess what? They are just not that into you!

— Kelli Mahoney Wasilla

Tired of being the dumbest person in the room

I am voting yes for Maui Wowee. Scientist have shown that continued marijuana use lowers a person’s IQ eight points. I am tired of always being the dumbest person in the room. So I am voting yes on Ballot Measure 2.

— John Suter Chugiak...

Alaska Dispatch News

In a recent fundraising email that made its way to a cover story in the Alaska Dispatch News , Gov. Parnell claimed my challenge of his Point Thomson settlement was intended to stop development: “Bill and his law firm are still fighting the state in court to stop the Pt. Thomson project, where over 700 people were working this summer. Alaskans cannot afford the job loss and lost economic momentum a Walker-Mallott ticket will bring.”

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Point Thomson is the largest non-producing oil and gas field in North America. The delivered value of its oil and gas is about $160 billion at today’s prices...

Bill Walker

With an upcoming mayoral election and the re-occurring debates about the records of Dan Sullivan and Mark Begich, I hope we can renew our focus on sound management within the Municipality of Anchorage. For the record, I was staff to both Dan Sullivan and Mark Begich when they served on the Anchorage Assembly.

As a current member of the Anchorage Assembly, I am very concerned about two trends in the Mayor’s Office: Mismanagement and cuts to the police force...

Elvi Gray-jackson

A dedicated mother bicycles through the cold Anchorage streets at midnight. She has just finished her shift at work, and is on her way to see her children. But she is not on her way home. Despite her full-time job, this hard-working mother can’t afford a car or even a bus ticket, so it’s no surprise that she can’t afford a home. She’s pedaling through the dark to spend the night on a church floor, one of many in Anchorage participating in the Emergency Cold Weather Shelter program. When she arrives, she will kiss her children, then sleep on the floor for a few hours, before waking early to head off to her next shift...

Rev. Matt Schultz

Ken Burns’ documentary "The Roosevelts," showing now on PBS television, conveys a powerful lesson on the critical role of leadership in formulating and achieving policy, particularly policy that works for the majority of Americans rather than a minority. Born patrician, Theodore, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt each dedicated their lives to public service that would empower and protect the mass of ordinary people -- in Burns’ telling, not for glory, but for good, because it is right. The list of contributions to the quality, and equality, of American life made by the three is not just impressive; it’s a catalog of public morality...

Steve Haycox
Raise the minimum wage

As a retired Alaskan senior, it hurts to see how hard-working folks who have entered the labor force in the last 20 years have to struggle to make ends meet. I was lucky to begin and end my career before corporations, and our elected representatives who hand out corporate welfare, chipped away at the middle class during the last couple of decades. Today a full-time minimum wage worker in Alaska makes $310 a week. This does not even come close to enough to support a family faced with the high costs of housing, food and energy in Alaska...

Alaska Dispatch News


Yes, even in an election year, we are talking about taxes, and we may soon be talking about higher taxes in the Municipality of Anchorage.

Anchorage Assemblyman Dick Traini has already been talking about new taxes for residents.

It’s true that within the Muni, politicians have to put taxes out to a vote of the people and have to, somehow, garner 60 percent of the vote. However, this time the tax fans may have a different plan...

Mike Dingman

For the past few years, the U.S. Navy has been developing plans to expand its warfare training exercises in the Gulf of Alaska, which they admit will impact thousands of marine mammals. The exercises are planned each summer (April-October) for five years, over an area of 42,146 square miles of the northern Gulf of Alaska, just south of Prince William Sound, and east of the Kenai Peninsula and Kodiak Island. The exercises would include two Carrier Strike Groups, use of high-frequency and mid-frequency active sonar for Anti-Submarine Warfare exercises, training on new weapons systems, and two ship-sinking exercises each year. The live weapons used would include missiles, heavy deck guns, bombs, and heavyweight torpedoes...

Rick Steiner

I'm writing in response to Win Gruening’s Sept. 11 op-ed . Gruening pens a rambling diatribe against Sen. Mark Begich, blaming Begich for saying his opponent is not Alaskan enough to hold office.

Dan Sullivan, the candidate Gruening supports, hails from Ohio. That would have nothing to do with whether the Ohio Sullivan is qualified to serve as Alaska’s U.S. Senator except for the fact that his Alaska credentials are questionable. Sullivan moved to Alaska in 1997, but according to multiple news sources, from 2006 until 2010 Sullivan claimed his principal residence was a home he owned in Bethesda, Maryland in order to receive a tax break on the home...

Kimberly Metcalfe

I am not an Alaskan. I live in New York City where we think fall is chilly when we have to wear a cotton sweater. But I have two reasons for wanting to address Ballot Measure 2. One is that Alaska is a red state, and I am a conservative Republican who has been writing for William F. Buckley Jr.’s magazine National Review for more than 40 years. There are good conservative reasons for supporting Ballot Measure 2 — cost, consistency, federalism, and learning the lessons of history...

Richard Brookhiser