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“One can’t appreciate philosophy until one understands that one IS the relish…”

Pardon me, but...... - Tue, 05/29/2018 - 13:28

I often enjoy the conversational approach of the early Greek philosophers, though it is clear that the dialog is being manipulated.  But in the open back and forth of unfettered discourse, one might well pick up a thing or two. Here is one such discussion (published without anyone’s permission):

Elstun W Lauesen — Here I a brief restatement of what I wrote in the middle of the night.

I am a Leftist. I am not a Conservative. I will, therefore confine my remarks to the Left.
The fuel of the Left is hope because the Left is devoted to change (reform).

This is a problem in 2018. To work toward reform, we have to believe that change is possible.

And just because Barack Obama appropriated those words for his political campaign does not make the presence of hope in our hearts any less imperative as an instrument of change.

I say this because my own self-examination reveals an awful truth. I have an affliction. It is cynicism.

There is no more damaging and cancer-like condition that can afflict a person devoted to reform than cynicism.

I have concluded the following about myself:
If I think I know too much about “the system” to believe that change is ever possible; if I feel too bitter by disappointment and dashed hope and the grossness of human nature to ever believe that a New World is possible; and if my advanced skills are devoted to sitting in the back of the room and picking the scabs of old wounds rather than taking a few more hits for the cause…
…then I am irrelevant to everything I believe in and to which I am devoted.

Cynicism is an intellectual and spiritual cancer.

See it. Call it out. Cut it out. Kill it.

Merwyn Ambrose Thanks for the death sentence brother

Categories: Commentary

Husbandry vs Hubris

Pardon me, but...... - Thu, 05/17/2018 - 11:52

We had seen her regularly in RJSP for a month or more. This past weekend she was down in the spring, and Tuesday she was up in the meadows below the moraine. But there was as yet no sign of any calf. This morning as we walked the proposed bike trail, Bernie suddenly went on point, and I scanned the copse of trees 40 yards ahead. Sure enough, there was mama with not one calf, but two, brightly minted new moose. Any tweener on that trail on a mountain bike (and I have raised a few myself) would have plowed into Mama Moose at about 8 mph, and the Mrs. would not have been pleased.

What we are seeing in the MOA’s brash attempt to push through single track trails in Russian Jack Springs Park is a past MOA Park official now running a private grant shop abusing Municipal systems intended to protect natural resources (and the public’s interests) to promote a recreational user group, entangling ADF&G habitat biologists in what is really a web of deceit. The proposed trail ran through wetlands in an area identified as critical natural habitat and the response, put crudely, from ADF&G biologist Cunya, was that a game path is much the same as a highway so it’s of no concern to anyone at ADF&G… Did I overstate the biologist’s position? Perhaps, but that was the impact of what he had to say on the grant process, because Ms. Nordland (not Anna Shaw, who spoke to the biologists) certified that there were no resident fish in RJSP (false), no anadromous fish in RJSP (very possibly false), no migratory fowl in RJSP (false), no raptors in RJSP (false), and no concerns regarding interactions between large land mammals and humans (really?).  And virtually none of that is really defensible.

Is my disappointment primarily with ADF&G? No. Frankly, the MOA (and the buck here sits in Chris Schutte’s lap) has bobbed and weaved in an effort to duck every checkpoint that Planning has placed in the system, including, apparently, ignoring Title 21’s requirement for a UDC Trail review, ensuring that the WNRC could not review the project, and refusing to comply with the 2006 Municipal Plan or the 2009 directive from PRC requiring the development of a natural resource plan before any further development in the park. But as habitat biologists, ADF&G staff could have set flags, in no small part because they are very well aware that the MOA has no habitat staff.

Last year my neighbor and I put out garbage cans in the park (and regularly cleaned them) because P&R had decided that the danger of Black bear in RJSP was so great that all non-bear proof cans had to be removed. They took ours, as well the cans at the ball fields! We have seen one Black bear in the area (on the east side of Cheney Lake) in 20 years. We see half a dozen moose in RJSP almost year around, with 2-4 calves each spring, and the position of P&R is that if someone gets hurt by a moose “that’s up to the lawyers to work out, ha ha ha”. Perhaps we need to change the name of Parks and Rec. to the Municipal Hubris Department?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pages 50-51 of the Anchorage Bowl Park, Natural Resource,and Recreation Facility Plan, adopted by Adopted by Ordinance AO 2005-122, April 18, 2006. Click on the images to obtain the pdf files.

Categories: Commentary

As partisan as they wanna be - The first in a series of analyses of the upcoming Anchorage Assembly races

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/24/2011 - 14:51
In January, former Anchorage assemblyman Dan Coffey addressed a message to “Friends and Colleagues” in an attempt to raise donations for five city assembly candidates, all endorsed by Mayor Dan Sullivan. Coffey’s letter was posted at the Anchorage Homebuilder’s Association web site. It says both city building codes and land use codes (zoning) are expected to come before the assembly after the April election, and warns industry players the new rules could hamper development.
Categories: Community News

As partisan as they wanna be - The first in a series of analyses of the upcoming Anchorage Assembly races

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/24/2011 - 13:22
In January, former Anchorage assemblyman Dan Coffey addressed a message to “Friends and Colleagues” in an attempt to raise donations for five city assembly candidates, all endorsed by Mayor Dan Sullivan. Coffey’s letter was posted at the Anchorage Homebuilder’s Association web site. It says both city building codes and land use codes (zoning) are expected to come before the assembly after the April election, and warns industry players the new rules could hamper development.
Categories: Community News

Zombies to invade Talkeetna - Low-budget horror flick features undead Alaskans, Corn Bread

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/24/2011 - 13:22
Located two hours north of Anchorage in the shadows of Mount McKinley, Talkeetna's accustomed to being overrun by tourists in the summer, but not quite as familiar with an inundation of the undead.
Categories: Community News

The Moore Report: Drunken sailors

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/24/2011 - 13:22
It’s nice having the Republicans in charge, I tell you. The one thing you can be sure of is that they, above all other things, will look out for our collective pocketbook. Won’t they? They have done in the past, and they do now. Right?
Categories: Community News

Does length matter? A group of lawmakers want to revert to the lengthier 120-day legislative session, but their logic doesn’t equate to the facts

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/24/2011 - 13:22
It didn't take long for state lawmakers to start debating over the voter imposed shorter legislative sessions: two sessions to be exact.
Categories: Community News

Blotter: Stopped for being conspicuous edition

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/24/2011 - 13:22
Last week the Alaska Court of Appeals threw out a drunk driver’s appeal, ruling that it was okay for an Alaska State Trooper to stop a Kenai man who was about to cross a road driving an all-terrain vehicle with a dog tethered to it. The trooper thought the practice might endanger the dog, or put other people using the road in danger should the dog suddenly act out while tethered to a ten-foot leash. In other words, the man got pulled over for looking stupid, or at least looking as if he was about to do something stupid or dangerous. The court had to decide if the stop was legit because evidence discovered after the stop—open beer cans inside the ATV and a driver who later blew a .226 on a breathalyzer—was fair game for prosecution. The courts call this sort of traffic stop a “community caretaker” stop, because when a cop stops someone who looks as if they’re about to do something stupid (and/or dangerous) the cop is acting in their role as protector of the community. But the fun thing about the Alaska decision is the footnoted list of stupid and/or conspicuous things drivers have done that led to similar arrests. Here’s a few: persistent honking during a traffic-jam at an accident (a cop believed it might cause another accident); driving with a bouncing rear wheel, causing weaving; driving in an incorrect lane (who appealed that?); driving with a load of furniture “that appeared inadequately secured” and could fall on the highway (in New Hampshire, not Wasilla). One Washington State case deserves special recognition because the officer was only trying to help the motorist who ended up being arrested. The Washington cop stopped a pickup truck “for the purpose of informing the driver that his hat was in jeopardy of blowing out of the bed of the vehicle.” Alaska State Troopers told Blotter the DUI suspect, initially popped in 2008, was also driving with a restricted license. A friend of the suspect came by to pick up the dog and the ATV.
Categories: Community News

Statehood recalled - A new film documents Alaska’s emergence as a state

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/17/2011 - 12:13
Depending on who tells the story, statehood may have saved Alaska from a salmon-run apocalypse, a weak Territorial justice system, a corrupted political system or a perpetual shortage of jobs and uncertainty over Native land claims. The truth is more complex than any singular point of view, but telling a story from multiple perspectives has its own pitfalls. Mainly, it can result in a disorganized mess.
Categories: Community News

The Moore Report: Shattered cynicism

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/17/2011 - 12:13
Oftentimes, politics is not what it seems. Oftentimes, we see practiced politicians, smiling for the cameras, handing out glib soundbites like candy on Halloween. While underneath is hidden corruption, backstabbing and backroom deals. Politics is often not what it seems.
Categories: Community News

A bridge too far? Legislators should think twice before throwing more money at the Knik Arm Crossing

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/17/2011 - 12:13
This week in the Senate Transportation Committee, lawmakers heard a proposal from State Senator Linda Menard (R-Wasilla) for the state to financially backstop the much-debated Knik Arm Crossing.
Categories: Community News

Out of the closet - The University of Alaska is setting an example the state should follow regarding the rights of LGBT employees

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/17/2011 - 12:13
For years the University of Alaska System (UA) staff and faculty did their best to keep secret a little known fact about their health care plan: university employees enjoyed same-sex partner health care benefits while all other state employees did not. The university non-discrimination policy, however, did not protect groups such as homosexual, bisexual and transgender folks. The different governance groups on campus generally had a silent gentleman’s agreement not to push the issue for fear that the more conservative members of the State Legislature might move to take away those benefits.
Categories: Community News

Feedback from the issue of 2.17.2011

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/17/2011 - 12:13
This guy loves the film incentives
Categories: Community News

Blotter: Sloppy gangsta edition

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/17/2011 - 12:13
Blotter thought everyone knew Anchorage has cops in schools, and that meant local high schools were closer to their idyllic goal of drug and violence-free zones where bullying is shunned and students never have to be afraid to show up. “We have police officers in all the schools, and so we suggest that bad guys don’t go in the schools,” Anchorage Police spokesman Lieutenant David Parker said this week. Not that police broadcast this cops-in-schools thing. It’s just something that’s well known, particularly among teenagers, the people society tries to build a drug-free/hate-free/violence-free zone for. This is why both Lieutenant Parker and Blotter were surprised by the story of two 19-year-old thugs, barely older than high school-aged themselves, who pulled a gunpoint heist in the parking lot of Jewel Lake Bowl and then sped directly toward Dimond High School in their getaway car. It’s a bit like robbing someone and fleeing toward the police station. The victim was a woman who told APD a man hopped in her car (she rummaging in her purse at the time) and pulled a gun on her. Yikes! He demanded her keys and her cell phone, and left in a gray Saturn with tinted windows. Two school resource officers, Cyndi Addington and Mark Wells, heard a description of the robbery in their neighborhood and hit the streets. “The SROs hop in their car and pull out on the street, and the vehicle passes right by them,” Parker says. “Yeah, they do work in schools, and they do a lot of wonderful work with the school population. But they are cops. They still like to get bad guys.”
Categories: Community News

Film schooled - The state’s subsidizing film productions, but can Alaskans compete with Hollywood pros for paychecks?

Anchorage Press - News - Fri, 02/11/2011 - 13:56
Alaska’s $100 million film incentive program won’t expire until July 2013 and the money isn’t nearly spent, so why is there legislation in Juneau to extend the program another decade and dole out $200 million in state subsidies? The answer mirrors an argument Alaskans often hear from oil companies, who are afraid of a fickle tax structure changing twice a decade. Hollywood wants stable subsidies, and says those subsidies will lead to stable jobs.
Categories: Community News

Film schooled - The state’s subsidizing film productions, but can Alaskans compete with Hollywood pros for paychecks?

Anchorage Press - News - Fri, 02/11/2011 - 12:13
Alaska’s $100 million film incentive program won’t expire until July 2013 and the money isn’t nearly spent, so why is there legislation in Juneau to extend the program another decade and dole out $200 million in state subsidies? The answer mirrors an argument Alaskans often hear from oil companies, who are afraid of a fickle tax structure changing twice a decade. Hollywood wants stable subsidies, and says those subsidies will lead to stable jobs.
Categories: Community News

Film schooled - The state’s subsidizing film productions, but can Alaskans compete with Hollywood pros for paychecks?

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/10/2011 - 11:48
Alaska’s $100 million film incentive program won’t expire until July 2013 and the money isn’t nearly spent, so why is there legislation in Juneau to extend the program another decade and dole out $200 million in state subsidies? The answer mirrors an argument Alaskans often hear from oil companies, who are afraid of a fickle tax structure changing twice a decade. Hollywood wants stable subsidies, and says those subsidies will lead to stable jobs.
Categories: Community News

The Moore Report: On strophes

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/10/2011 - 11:48
I might be a mathboy (“The Moore Report: Magic numbers,” December 2, 2010), but I’m also a wordboy. There’s nothing about the two that is necessarily mutually exclusive, but they don’t go together often, it’s true. So, I like to write. I like doing this. I like words and their origins and meanings.
Categories: Community News

Self-sustainability - Is it time for Alaska to grow up?

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/10/2011 - 11:48
This has not been a good week for Alaska in Washington D.C. Our congressional delegation has been on defense more than the Alaska Aces trying to kill a penalty.
Categories: Community News

Coffee with Rose - During Black History Month, remembering that African-American heroes don’t need to be public figures

Anchorage Press - News - Thu, 02/10/2011 - 11:48
We talk a lot about people who have done extraordinary things. Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela, Rosa Parks and others are astounding African-American heroes whose groundbreaking actions made them public figures. Unfortunately, we often forget to discuss those who do extraordinary things and do not receive such public accolades. This brand of hero is far more prevalent than, and just as important as, the public one. Thinking about Black History Month this year made me think of one important hero that had an impact in my life.
Categories: Community News

This communication was paid for by Marc Grober, 5610 Radcliff Dr. Anchorage, AK 99504
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