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Capital budget still has good portion of pure pork

I take issue with the article (ADN, Monday) stating Gov. Walker has chopped the capital budget. Just go to the governor’s website. The capital budget, including federal dollars, is more than $1.3 billion. Most seems to be pure pork.

— Ron West Anchorage

Liberal media is blind to torture of Clinton era

Isn’t it strange how this paper, all the liberal media and the Senate report says not one word about the torture that took place (and started) under President Bill Clinton? He was the first president to have prisoners rendered to foreign countries where their torture makes waterboarding look like getting tickled with a feather. Or is it only “bad” if Bush did it?

— Russell Holmes Wasilla...

Alaska Dispatch News

FAIRBANKS -- The flight home was a long haul. Three and a half hours in an airline seat. But coming home is always worth the effort, even when home is Fairbanks, Alaska, and the January temperature is minus 37.

The short walk from the terminal to the taxi was a brutal reminder of what we take for granted here. Cold, mean, dangerous, unrelenting cold. On the way home, cars and trucks idled in supermarket parking lots, people afraid to turn engines off for fear they would not start again. On the road, the vehicles blew thick plumes of exhaust as they made their way through the frigid town. Everyone and everything freezing in the dark...

Patrick Green

This was supposed to be a warm and fuzzy Christmas column. Unbridled joy. Elves. Kids. Sugar plums and cookies. You know, to fit the season. Then, I saw a chilling video of useful idiots in what major news outlets called a “peaceful” protest in New York City chanting: “What do we want? Dead cops! When do we want it? Now!”

That got me wondering: Who are we?...

Paul Jenkins

The bottom has fallen out of the oil market. In recent months oil prices have dropped in half. When and whether prices recover is unknowable. Insofar as this is associated with a worldwide economic slowdown, increased supplies, and Saudi Arabia’s intent to regain market share, prices could be depressed for a long time.

Oil, of course, accounts for a large portion of the Alaska economy. Including indirect effects some estimates are as high as 50 percent. This ensues from the oil industry's own spending and from state spending. The vast majority of unrestricted state revenues come from oil, and state spending recirculates petrodollars into the economy...

Roger Marks

This week, President Obama did something I like. (I know, you’re thinking, “Even a secret Kenyan Muslim Socialist gets on base every once in while.”) Actually, there were two things I liked. One, I can hardly wait to visit Cuba. It'll be like going into a time machine -- only warmer. While I realize he had help from my favorite pope, I'm giving the president credit for not continuing to do the same thing we’ve been doing for 50 years and expecting a different result. You know, the definition of insanity...

Shannyn Moore

Bristol Bay salmon have been in the spotlight, and rightly so.

First, we learned that Americans love to eat salmon more than ever before, with most of the wild catch coming from Alaska. Then, Alaska job numbers showed that jobs for commercial fishing grew last year to a level not seen since 2000, with salmon comprising 98 percent of the harvesting jobs for Bristol Bay. Last month, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game released its extraordinary sockeye forecast for Bristol Bay’s 2015 season. In it, the agency estimates that nearly 54 million salmon will return to the rivers of Bristol Bay next summer...

Joe Faith
Warren unique in challenging times

I think Sen. Elizabeth Warren offers all Americans a glimmer of hope in an otherwise abysmal congressional setting as we transition to 2015.

She is a very well-spoken senator who represents everyone (except Citibank, apparently), is extremely smart, prepared to rise to the occasion, and seems to carry no baggage or hidden agenda.

I encourage everyone to read her latest book “A Fighting Chance,” listen carefully to what she has to say, and take comfort in her being truly a senator who represents each of us in these challenging times.

— Thomas B. Petersen Anchorage...

Alaska Dispatch News

The players and the plays on Alaska’s North Slope are changing. Companies like Caelus Energy, Brooks Range and Hilcorp are just some of the new but smaller players looking to develop Alaska’s resources. These independents are going after difficult plays, using new technologies and techniques.

Caelus Energy Alaska, which purchased Pioneer assets and was recently the big winner at the state’s North Slope lease sale, has a “shovel- ready” project, the Nuna development, targeting a tight reservoir...

Rebecca Logan
White privilege is reality

The letter from Terry L. Chambers (ADN, Monday) contends if Michael Brown hadn’t committed a crime, he would still be alive. This is all well and good, but how do you explain the disproportionate number of deaths for black Americans that “commit crimes”? Data and studies show not only are black people arrested more often for the same crimes as white Americans, they are also charged more harshly. In addition, data suggests black Americans are killed by police, instead of being taken into custody, at a higher frequency than white Americans committing similar crimes...

Alaska Dispatch News

While reading E.J.R. David’s piece in Sunday's opinion section (Dec. 14) I was, at first, indignant at his assertion that "colorblindness" is not the ideal to which our society should be striving. Reading on, I saw that while professor David’s definition of the word differed from my own, and he had valid points regarding the effect of people ignoring -- or pretending to ignore -- our perceptions regarding people around us. Upon reflection I realized that I, like most of us, am not colorblind...

Warren Metzger