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Letters to the Editor

Readers write: Letters to the editor, Aug. 8

  • Author: Alaska News
  • Updated: July 8, 2016
  • Published August 7, 2014

We respect legal immigrants

Rita Hatch said nothing can change a fact in her letter of Aug. 5, yet she tried to. She said our country was "founded by immigrants and built for immigrants" but she left out the word "legal," which most citizens respect. What part of "legal" does she not understand?

She also failed to acknowledge the fact that most of the innocent children are being cared for by the Christian community.

And if anyone cannot defend their public comments, they should keep them private. I welcome any comments.

— Jerry P. Jones


Big Oil doesn’t need help

Foolish me, I thought that our leaders were supposed to act in our long-term interest. But we have many politicians and even union leaders seizing the short-term advantage that will be the bad choice in the long term.

Money flowing out of Alaska via comparatively really low taxes on oil extraction may make a few jobs in that sector for the short term but hurts us financially and in jobs over the long term. Oil taxes fund jobs in all sorts of job sectors.

I see no need to help the mega rich oil company shareholders get even higher profits than the already amazing profits they already get when the taxes on the oil could help Alaskans in so many ways.

— Alex Koponen


State’s outsource of science on Pebble is disgraceful

Supporters of Pebble Mine strategically avoid the central issue. Will a gigantic copper mine in the heart of the greatest sockeye salmon producing region in the world negatively impact the sockeye salmon and fisheries that depend on them? Because the state refused, Alaskans asked the Environmental Protection Agency to examine this question. Their study is a scientific, independently peer-reviewed analysis. It is the best science available on the mine's impacts.

The state, disgracefully, has almost completely outsourced scientific study of the impacts to the developer. Pebble has spent lots of money and produced pages of documents, but nothing, including no mining plan, concerning the impact of the proposed mine.

Pebble supporters, including the state, instead seek to divert attention to arguments about due process. Supporters of the Pebble Mine know if the mine enters the state's permitting process, it will be permitted. State permitting is all about figuring out how to say yes and no large project has been denied its permits once it entered the process.

The irony of the Parnell administration invoking due process, when it has repeatedly locked its own citizens out of the process of governing, is enough to tire even an elephant.

— Geron Bruce


Iraq was a waste of lives

After the U.S .invasion of Iraq, at a cost of $2 trillion (exacerbating the deficit the tea party is always complaining about), over 4,000 American lives lost, over 35,000 casualties, Iraq's sputtering oil industry has become one of the world's top producers. However the beneficiaries are the Chinese because western oil companies balk at Iraq's strict terms. Why should ConcoPhillips, Exxon Mobil and BP play by Iraq rules, when they can get Alaska oil at rock bottom prices.

— Mary Turner


Grateful for French, Gara

I am very grateful for Sen. Hollis French and Rep. Les Gara. After the Supreme Court ruled that corporations were people, Sen. French fought hard for legislation to require corporate political activities to reveal their funding sources. When House Republicans tried to strip this public disclosure from the bill, Rep. Gara fought hard to successfully retain it.

Thanks to them, we now know these incessant campaign television ads are "Paid for by Exxon Mobil, ConocoPhillips and BP." Regardless of which side you're on, the public deserves to know who is funding the message.

— Kevin Harun


Tax reform worth trying

I worked with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game as a fisheries technician in the 1960s at Chignik on the Alaska Peninsula. At the time our new state was in the first years of taking over commercial fisheries management from the federal government, which was a poor overseer likened to an absentee landlord. The area management biologist I worked for often fought local opposition when he made field closures to ensure escapement. Some of the wiser fishermen understood what he was doing and supported him. Through his efforts a very strong sockeye salmon run was built at Chignik that endures today — half a century later.

Unlike fish, oil is a non-renewable resource. But from an investment standpoint I view it no differently. Like allowing fish to swim upstream to spawn, creating a climate that encourages investment is the best way to ensure a strong and lasting economy.

If I had money to invest and were sitting across the table from two entities — the state of Alaska and the oil industry — I would have no trouble picking the latter. Like fisherman competing for the prize, we tend to be impatient. We should let tax reform work and vote no on Aug. 19.

— Frank E. Baker

Eagle River

Abortion is not solution

It is so good to see that we have some candidates for U.S. Senate who recognize that life is sacred.

Anyone who would promote a right to abortion has to be sure that the little human they want to be killed, or are allowing to be killed, is not alive. Otherwise they are willing to promote or allow the killing of an innocent little child. That is a serious situation.

Are they really able to do that?

In fact, science has moved exactly in the other direction. We now know that from the time of conception all the new little human person needs is protection and nutrition, just like the rest of us.

I beg all of those who are pro-choice to re-examine the science. We can work together to help pregnant women and the helpless little children they carry. Killing is not the solution.

This is how we recapture our greatness as a nation: by restoring protection and respect for human life from its very beginning.

— Kristina Johannes


Parnell deserved rebuke

Susan Bomalaski, the director of Anchorage Catholic Social Services, hit the nail on the head with her response to Gov. Parnell's witch hunt for immigrant children. Stating that the five children (out of more than 60,000 unaccompanied minors to have been taken into U.S. custody) who have been sent to Alaska should be welcomed into the local community, she both humanizes these child refugees and slaps the governor on the wrist for stinginess and mean-spirited behavior.

That condemnation, however, was not sufficient. In choosing to inform his knowledge of state-level affairs with biased reporting such as that found on Breitbart's very conservative news platform, Gov. Parnell fails to represent accurately the political needs of his constituency. The governor's use of his office's power and funding to emphasize his own lack of compassion is concerning, particularly since the issue at hand presents very little, if any, expense to our state.

— Zoe Danner


Production decline due to companies locking oil up

I was born in 1927 in Haycock on the Seward Peninsula and have personally known many good Alaska governors — Egan, Hickel, and Hammond. The current governor is not one we can trust.

What are the true motives of the oil lobbyist Gov. Parnell and those in the Legislature who want to give away our money to the poor oil corporations?

As a Doyon member I do not support the Doyon advertising that is being done without approval of the average shareholder.

Alaska oil production is diminishing only because they are keeping it safely locked away for their rainy day account.

Does anyone sincerely believe Alaska is running out of oil? Does anyone sincerely believe we will get anything in return from our politician's generosity to the big oil corporations with the income from our oil? Do you remember the promise of inexpensive energy for Alaskans from the building of the pipeline from the North Slope? How did the oil corporations come through on that promise?

Big oil corporations have paid for the best representation money can buy, and it is obvious whom many of our elected officials in Juneau really represent. It is up to us, and only us, to stem the insanity of the oil corporations controlling our legislature. Please join me in supporting the "Vote Yes" effort.

Repeal the giveaway and be sure in the next election not to vote for those who represent oil corporations instead of Alaskans.

— Holger "Jorgy" Jorgensen


The views expressed here are the writers' own and are not necessarily endorsed by Alaska Dispatch News, which welcomes a broad range of viewpoints. To submit a letter for consideration, email, or click here to submit via any web browser. Submitting a letter constitutes granting permission for it to be edited for clarity, accuracy and brevity.

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