Nov 4, 2016

It's votin' time in Alaska....

Over a series of Facebook posts, I recently laid out how I'm voting this year. It's late & I'm tired, so I'm just doing a copy and paste of those posts.

I'm voting no on Ballot Measure 1. Here's why:
***There's currently no barrier to registering to vote. You can register online, at the DMV, through the mail, at the Division of Elections, or through multiple voter registration agencies.
***The measure will cost $1,000,000 (that's one million dollars) to implement and $300,000 each year to maintain. For a state government that's broke, that's a pretty decent chunk of change.
***Since it's already easy to register to vote, what is the motivation in registering a whole bunch of people who up to this point have chosen to not participate in our representative republic? Here's a thought: soon Alaska will follow other states like Oregon where all voting is done via the mail or online. If measure 1 passes, there'll be piles and piles of extra ballots floating around. That sounds like the perfect storm for voter fraud.
Bottom line: VOTE NO ON 1!!!!!

 Still on my soap box:
Ballot Measure 2: Really? More debt? Is that really what we need right now? That is like throwing a drowning person a concrete block. VOTE NO ON 2!!!

One more political post before bed... I hesitate to comment on this one... These posts are not meant to start a facebook argument, but I know some of you will disagree with this one. The race for president. Simply put: #NeverHillary . Is Trump going to be good president? Probably not. But Clinton is on a mission to destroy everything that made this country great.
And while we are on the subject... It's time to get rid of primaries, delegates, super delegates, and the electoral college. It's time to use this alternate voting system:

It's past my bed time, but let's do one more: local races.
State Senate District D: David Wilson. I think he's a solid choice.
State Representative District 7: Colleen Sullivan-Leonard. Mainly because of the R.
These are my choices for where I live. If Cathy Tilton is on your ballot, she's a great pick.

Another late night politics post: the judges. What is there; 20 or 30 up for retainment? Who has time to research that? Well I did some. I'm voting no on the first two judges listed; Bolger and Maassen. They struck down the parental notification law passed by voters a few years back; meaning a minor child can obtain abortion without the parents ever knowing anything about it.
For the rest of the judges I'm voting yes. Is anyone else doing something different? If so, feel free to share what & why. Especially why.
****UPDATE: I've heard some stuff about Judge White. I think I'll vote no on this one.

 Last political post. After this all my cards are on the table. Judge me as you will.
U.S. Representative: Don Young. Why? ( in my best Teyve voice ) ~ TRADITION!!! And if you don't get the Fiddler on the Roof reference, I'm not sure we can be friends...

Finally that brings us to the US Senate race. Man, I have gone back and forth on this one. In 2010 I wrote in Lisa Murkowski. Why? I had serious concerns about Joe Miller. His behavior while employed by the Fairbanks North Star Borough showed a lack of ethics. His attempt to rig a survey by voting from multiple computers? His having a reporter handcuffed and illegally detained? At the time I described him as a big ol' bucket of crazy. And yes, I know Lisa is a liberal Republican. But I figured better the devil you know than the one you don't know.
But here we are six years later. Actually I'm really, really disappointed that former Anchorage mayor Dan Sullivan didn't run. Then we'd have two Dan Sullivan's as Republican Senators from Alaska. The resulting confusion would be awesome!! But alas... it was not to be.
In these six years, Lisa has continued to slide further to the left. Joe has managed to keep the craziness under control. I still can't shake the feeling that he's just saying what he thinks people want to hear though...
So where does that leave me? I'll probably vote Joe, but I'll do so wishing I had a better choice.
So there it is. Let's see what happens on Tuesday. Oh, one final note. Two actually. #1: what makes this country great isn't who we do or don't elect. What makes this country great is it's people. We all need to work hard, provide for our families and be decent towards each other. #2: no matter what happens, God is still God. Anytime we place our hope on who is or isn't elected we set ourselves up to be disappointed.

One more note on Lisa:  the sanctity of life was the issue that put the nail in the coffin for me on Lisa. We've always known she was pro-abortion, but I figured as part of the pro-life Republican Party she couldn't do much damage. But more and more, every vote counts on these important issues and I'm not giving her a chance to swing the balance in the wrong direction.

Bonus clip:

Aug 28, 2016

Denali "The Great One"

I'm trying this post from my phone....
On Friday my parents were up for a visit and we drove to Talkeetna. The view from the deck of the Talkeetna Alaska Lodge is pretty spectacular and the mountain was out in its glory. 
Then on Sunday we were in Anchorage and I swung by my favorite spot near Point Woronzof. And again the mountains was out. 

Jul 3, 2016

Portage Pass Trail to Portage Glacier & Portage Lake

 The Portage Pass trail starts just outside of Whittier and travels upward 700 feet in elevation gain to the top. It's around one and half miles to the top and then continues down another mile and a half to the shores of Portage Lake.
The trail is well defined. At the lower elevations it cuts through thick brush and alder trees. It's a gravel trail that was mostly dry the day we hiked it.
 The entire hike you are surrounded by incredible vistas. Waterfalls cascade off the surrounding peaks, fed by melting snow or hanging glaciers.
 Did I mention the glaciers... The goal of the hike is the Portage Glacier, but its just one of several glaciers to see.
 The total distance from the trail head to the lake and back is about 6 miles. The trail is pretty steep in places... For us it was a difficult hike, but we are in pretty weak physical shape. We passed several families with smaller children, so it's pretty doable for most people.
 Going up and down has great views in every direction. Many people choose to just hike the top and not continue onto the lake. Looking back the way you came has views of Passage Canal, the mouth of the Anton Anderson Tunnel and the Whittier Harbor. The cruise ship the Coral Princess was in port the day we did the hike.
 A word of warning: the bugs were horrible... Not just mosquitoes but biting flies. We repeatedly applied bug dope, but it only helped at a little. We had a slight breeze, so maybe a stronger wind would help. At the very top on the Whittier side the wind was stronger and the bugs were a lot less.
 Again... the views are amazing. Once you reach the top you can see Divide Lake and then the Portage Glacier beyond that. The trail can be seen on the shore just left of Divide Lake and then it drops down to the shore of Portage Lake. You can click on any of the pictures for a larger view.
 The top of the pass is your classic Alaskan alpine area. We'd like to repeat the hike sometime and the future and spend some time exploring up here. It appears there are trails going off in several different directions.

 At the top we debated about continuing on down to Portage Lake. I was already pretty worn out from the trip up and the heat was making me sick. But after getting down to the lake I know it was worth it. You could spend a lot time exploring along the lake and there were even people setting up to camp overnight on the shore.

The other, more popular way to get to the Portage Glacier is aboard the M/V Ptarmigan with Portage Glacier Cruises. This one hour ride is cost effective and gets you right up to the face of the glacier. You can book your cruise here...
For more information on visiting Whittier you can click here...
For details on traveling through the Anton Anderson tunnel you can click here...