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Anchorage, Alaska
Nov. 7, 2001

As in my previous commentary entitled "Crossroads", dated August 12, 2001, I explored some issues dichotomized within the media & political leadership circles ranging from international & national & the State of Alaska & to it's largest city - Anchorage. While some of the trends are on course, recent developments have exposed new options for our decision-makers & illuminated replays of other roads already traveled.

In Anchorage, for example, the city recently completed a $25 million road project. Along its 15th Avenue & DeBarr Roads, rights-of-way were bought from property owners, & old homes, apartment buildings, & some businesses were purchased to make room for street renovations & improvements. Those changes amounted to pedestrian amenities, a large anchor with a "Welcome to Fairview" sign, extra benches for bus riders, bike paths on both sides of the road, the planting of new trees & shrubs, extra street lights to shine on the bike paths (many times 2 or 3 in between the regular street lights), & for half its length the reduction from 4 lanes to 2 (with a middle 3rd turning lane). The effect of the overall change was the opposite of a faster traveling speed between point A & point B along the route. Because the city got the $25 million dollars mostly from the federal government, they didn't have to use much city or state monies. Had the local tax base been involved, there would have been an outcry against it. The practical purpose of the project failed but the roadway does look nice, as morning & evening commuters curse the traffic jams while enjoying the new views.

In Alaska, Gov. Tony Knowles, Democrat, once again ignored his Oath of Office to Alaskans & failed to appeal a federal court's decision on subsistence. An appeal would have gone to the US Supreme COurt which could have resulted in declaring the federal subsistence priorities unconstitutional in lieu of the already equal standing provisions protecting all Alaskans under the state constitution. After all, "Phony Tony" gets large campaign contributions from many of the Native interests (& most of their votes), besides from Big Oil. This democrat, originally from Oklahoma before coming to Alaska after his Army stint in Vietnam, needs their continued financial support should he seek political office at the federal level (He did sleep in the White House during the Clinton years, as many other Clinton backers did). Once again, Gov. Knowles had a chance to come clean for all Alaskans but failed.

Also in Alaska, Knowles failed to push for an all-Alaskan natural gas pipeline route but opted to concur with the Canadian & Big Oil interests & pushed for a trans-Alaska Highway route through Canada instead. Now the expected economic boom that could have happened with more jobs within Alaska has become a very dim light in the closet as "Phony Tony" testified before Congress this year & abrogated his oath of office to Alaska once more by subrogating favorable state economic policies to those of outside interests.

Again in Alaska, let's not forget that, right after taking office in 1997, Knowles immediately dropped all state lawsuits against the federal government that were initiated by the previous Gov. Wally Hickel (Republican turned Alaska Independence Party turned Republican). Those lawsuits were to help exercise state sovereignty on land use issues within Alaska, rather than bowing to federal dictates. Just because "Phony Tony" does not take his oath of office as Governor seriously does not mean that the opposition Republican Party should follow suit by neglecting to pursue possible impeachment proceedings against Knowles. This is one route the state GOP & other third parties should seriously consider, before Knowles successfully completes his public relations campaign to hoodwink Alaskans now & Americans in the future.

In America, the slight divide into Pres. Bush's approval ratings & anti-terrorism war policies emerges. Anti-American slogans & demonstrations, once confined to pro-Taliban Arab groups in other countries, have now begun in our homeland, as some Democratic House & Senate members are reluctant to support the war effort. Some portions of the media, citing "Freedom of the Press" have broadcast our military movements that are seen by our enemies through such media outlets as CNN. For example, when a reporter announces that another fleet of B2 Stealth bombers or B52 Stratofortress bombers has just departed Whiteman AFB in Missouri, it does not take a rocket scientist to compute (given published air speed rates) that, with mid-air refueling, the non-stop flights wil be over Afghanistan at a certain time, giving the enemy time to "hunker down" in their caves. Did America allow Hitler or Tojo the opportunity to monitor our domestic military activities in World War II? HELL NO! If this is not treason, then it definetely is SEDITION. Where were these demonstrators when nearly 6,000 people in NYC & DC & PA (including those from 80 countries who were in the WTC towers) lost their lives? Will our government prosecute CNN? The same country whose military protects our freedoms is now vulnerable & made less effective by the "enemy within" as the establishment mainstream corporate media fails to realize that their rights are protected as long as our country is protected. There is no freedom of speech or freedom of the press or the right of women to vote in Taliban-controlled Afghanistan, or Saddam Husseim's Iraq, or the other potentates of the oil sheikdoms of the Middle East. It's time for those few Democrats & anti-war demonstrators & the anti-American media to realize whose "hand is feeding them", & to realize that, if America is to remain in SOLIDARITY & win this war against terrorism, that they, too, must be in SOLIDARITY with the rest of the nation.

Also in America, Congress forgets to deal with the corruption of Rep. Gary Condit, Democrat from California, during this new national crisis. Condit sits on the House Intelligence Committee, a key assignment during these troubled times. Can we trust him as America battles the terrorists? As the women in his life. Ask the women in Clinton's life if the former President could be trusted. Ask the dismantled intelligence agencies & feminized military if they can trust the crooked politicians as America shows its vulnerability & unpreparedness during these terrorist attacks of flying bombs (jets loaded with fuel & passengers) & biochemical outbursts. Ask Americans if they can trust a House of Representatives who closes its doors for a few days to disinfect for anthrax while it tells the people that our nation is prepared & protected. Ask Americans if they can trust a Senate who still refuses to consider or approve the presidential nominees of Bush while it says partisan bickering is "out the door" during this national tragedy. Ask Americans if they can trust our leaders who take measures to provide antibiotics to Congress & its staffers days before it decides to also provide the same to the mail handlers who probably handled the anthrax-ridden mail before it reached Congress. Why should the "governors" get preferential treatment before the "governed"? These double standards highlight what's wrong in American politics today.

On the international scene, as most civilized countries support our war effort, many of the Arab countries show bipolar enthusiasm. While there is strong anti-Israeli sentiment present amongst their people, some of the Arab leaders quietly endorse our efforts, but only half-heartedly & mostly from behind the scenes, if at all. It's time for them to also show some LEADERSHIP & denounce terrorism, no matter from what religious or political sector it rears its ugly face. It's time our America's leaders to show some COURAGE & tell those Middle East countries that our freedoms are no longer dependent upon their oil, but that we will finish this struggle even if it means that we no longer use their oil & have to develop our own resources again, which will certainly tick off many environmentalists in this country.

It's time for all good people to come to the aid of their country as we are at the crossroads, again.

Freedom Writer

Anchorage, AK

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