Posted Wednesday, January 07, 2015 - 10:14 am
A flag-lowering ceremony in Kabul this past weekend signaled the official end of Operation Enduring Freedom — America’s 13-year war on terror in Afghanistan.
But the reality is that the war is not over, and Americans shouldn’t act like it is.
Though al-Qaida, the architects of the 9/11 attacks and other terrorist plots, has been partly dismantled and the Taliban is a shadow of its former self, extremism still has a foothold in the war-torn nation.
Posted Wednesday, January 07, 2015 - 10:12 am
As unlikely as it seems, there are a few benefits to Alaska residents that come with lower oil prices. The slump, in which prices have dropped to levels between $60 and $80 per barrel in recent months, has left the state budget in a world of hurt, and there’s no question residents will feel a host of negative effects of that lost production tax revenue. But there’s a silver lining for residents that takes a bit of the sting out of the market downturn.
Posted Wednesday, December 17, 2014 - 12:32 pm
Alaska’s political leaders once again will be reaching for the antacids as the state confronts a colossal loss of revenue because of the tumbling price of oil.
The Alaska Department of Revenue, in its annual fall forecast released Dec. 9, expects the price of oil to average $76 per barrel for the present fiscal year, which ends June 30. That’s down about 40 percent from the department’s spring projection. The department expects a further decline in the following fiscal year.
Posted Wednesday, December 03, 2014 - 10:56 am
The Obama presidency was supposed to revive America’s image in the eyes of the world, but results on that score have been mixed at best. Recent blunders show the White House struggling to manage relationships with our closest allies.
Speaking in the coal-producing Australian state of Queensland [in November] during the G-20 Brisbane economic summit, Obama made what Greg Sheriden, foreign editor of The Australian, called “a bizarre decision to attack and damage his closest ally in Asia, and one of the most committed supporters of U.S. foreign policy.”
Posted Wednesday, November 19, 2014 - 10:21 am
President Obama must be tone deaf. His threat to go it alone on comprehensive immigration reform — bypassing Congress if necessary — sounds like man who didn’t hear the nation’s loud and clear rejection of his policies Nov. 4.
Instead, he sounds like a president who’s determined to get his way — even if it condemns the country to two more years of gridlock.
House Speaker John Boehner correctly warned Nov. 6 that the president will “poison the well” for the new Congress if he takes executive action to address the deportation of undocumented immigrants.
Posted Thursday, November 06, 2014 - 7:56 am
I usually don’t buy into post-election hand-wringing over voter turnout for a simple reason: If you don’t care enough to vote then I really don’t want you having a hand in the outcome anyway.
That said, however, the extremely low turnout for the 2014 general election is mystifying.
Posted Wednesday, October 29, 2014 - 9:49 am
Editor’s note: The Journal of Commerce, which is owned by the same company as the Empire, joins in its editorial board endorsement of Sean Parnell for governor.
The road of Alaska politics is never a dull ride — there’s twists and turns, drama, success and defeat; there’s even some old-fashioned corruption every once in a while. When it comes to who the Juneau Empire will recommend for Alaska’s governor, the road led to Sean Parnell.
Posted Wednesday, October 22, 2014 - 11:49 am
President Barack Obama has always seen himself as an agent of change, a la Ronald Reagan. His goal was to do for progressive politics what Reagan had done for conservatism.
Thus it was no surprise that he parroted a Reagan trope in recently asking the question of whether Americans are better off today than when he took office — and then answering his own question by concluding that “the country is definitely better off than we were when I came into office.”
Posted Thursday, October 02, 2014 - 5:45 am
News in September that a Texas-based company is looking to ship natural gas north from Cook Inlet to the Interior likely came as a surprise to many Fairbanks residents. After all, the state and Interior municipal governments are already well down the path toward commitment to a natural gas trucking plan that would require a liquefaction plant on the North Slope and trucking to Fairbanks — plans and financing for the plant are already underway.
Posted Thursday, October 02, 2014 - 5:39 am
Today hundreds of Alaskans are employed working towards first production at the largest undeveloped oil and gas field in Alaska — Point Thomson. This follows years of disputes, hearings, litigation, and an out of court settlement achieved in 2012.
Now we have Bill Walker maligning those who worked selflessly on behalf of the state by claiming in a recent opinion piece that the settlement is the “worst, dirtiest backroom deal in the state’s history.”
Posted Thursday, September 25, 2014 - 5:56 am
It’s not corporate greed or a lack of patriotism that is driving American corporations overseas, as President Barack Obama contends. It’s one of the worst corporate tax codes in the developed world. The cold, hard evidence of that is detailed in a new study ranking the tax competitiveness of 34 industrialized nations.
Posted Thursday, September 11, 2014 - 5:53 am
A Chinese proverb states that the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and so it goes with the Alaska LNG Project.
More than a few of those important initial steps have been taken less than nine months after the major North Slope producers, pipeline company TransCanada and the State of Alaska signed a “heads of agreement” statement outlining a large-diameter pipeline and export plant project.
Posted Wednesday, August 27, 2014 - 10:17 am
Call it ISIS, ISIL or the Islamic State. By any name it is deadly, and America is in its sights.
The murder of James Foley was — or should have been — a wake-up call for those who have, despite the murders of thousands on Sept. 11, 2001, been lulled into a false sense of security.
These fanatic, brutal killers have an equally false sense of grandeur, but they are dangerous to anyone who doesn’t kowtow to their perverted interpretation of their religion.
Posted Thursday, August 21, 2014 - 5:51 am
No, Les Gara, Alaskans were not fooled.
In a response to our veteran reporter Tim Bradner about the results of the Aug. 19 primary that saw the effort to repeal oil tax reform defeated, Rep. Gara took the four-percentage point loss as a moral victory.
“This shows the power of corporate money,” the Anchorage Democrat said, “but also that Alaskans are tough to fool.”
Posted Wednesday, July 16, 2014 - 11:05 am
During the past few months you’ve read a great deal about Ballot Measure 1 on these pages, and for the next month leading up to the primary election Aug. 19, you’ll continue to. The measure, which would repeal Gov. Sean Parnell’s recently-passed oil tax reforms, is hailed by supporters as a return to a fairer tax scheme. Opponents say that repealing the oil tax reforms would cripple the state’s economy and undo progress made in stemming the decline of oil production on the North Slope. The two sides disagree on nearly every major tenet of the measure’s effects.
Posted Thursday, July 10, 2014 - 7:06 am
The long and perplexing dispute over the proposed one-lane gravel road through a portion of the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge on the Alaska Peninsula has just become a heavyweight fight.
Posted Tuesday, July 08, 2014 - 5:40 am
Apparently, defending your good name is an ethics violation — if you’re governor, that is.
Following a misinformed opinion column penned by lieutenant governor-hopeful Craig Fleener, where he accused Gov. Sean Parnell of skipping a planned event at the National Congress of American Indians conference in Anchorage earlier this month, a state Democratic party officer has now filed an ethics complaint against Parnell.
Posted Thursday, June 19, 2014 - 7:55 am
In 2008, Alaska’s usually low-profile Senate contests came to an end, as Sen. Ted Stevens saw his decades-long career in office come crashing down amidst a corruption trial that made national headlines.
Two years later, the 49th state got heavy press again when Sen. Lisa Murkowski was toppled by challenger Joe Miller in an unexpected primary result, only to mount a successful and widely publicized write-in campaign.
Posted Thursday, June 05, 2014 - 8:29 am
Barack Obama reaffirmed his belief in American exceptionalism in a speech (last) week aimed at reframing his foreign policy. This was no small point coming from a President who won office partly by capitalizing on a decline in the U.S.’s global standing.
When he accepted the Democratic nomination in August 2008, Obama made a bold promise.
Posted Thursday, May 08, 2014 - 11:09 am
It was noted in this space a few weeks ago that Democrats never let good news go to waste, and they remain nothing if not predictable.
Barely an hour after BP announced it was selling some of its smaller North Slope assets to Hilcorp Energy on April 22, the reliable Sen. Hollis French was out with a press release accusing BP of fattening its bottom line by exiting Alaska after lobbying for the oil tax reform that passed the Legislature in 2013.