Does Alaska even have a future?

I came to Alaska over 50 years ago when the phrase North to Alaska meant adventure, excitement, a taste of the old West in what was then modern-day America. Turns out, much to my surprise given that I loved living in Brooklyn, Alaska was my future. I’m guessing there aren’t many people today who feel that way anymore once they arrive here.

We seem to have blown our pipeline money on every common sense or ridiculous scheme anyone proposed back in the day when the money seemed never ending. But it did end. And given that we have a legislature Continue reading →


The half million dollar toilet

Let’s talk toilets. Yep. That’s the topic with your morning coffee today. Toilets.

I’m guessing anyone who reads this while sipping their morning latte is well aware of how critical a toilet can be soon after that coffee goes down. So, the idea of having clean, fairly sanitary toilets for public use as opposed to the infamous porta-toilets we have all known and loved since our first band concert makes sense. As someone who has traveled to most 3rd world countries in Asia and Africa, I can’t emphasize enough how important public restrooms can be. Especially the kind that Continue reading →


Peace, love and pot were simply not enough

When I was ten years old, the year 2024 seemed forever away. It was a time and place for Star Trek or Star Wars but not for someone relatively normal like me. (I am sticking to the idea that I was a relatively normal kid no matter what anyone from my childhood says.)

While I’m going to assume that there was some part of me that knew outer space would not yet be populated with Americans going warp speed somewhere else, there was also a part of me that never imagined America would become a different country – one in Continue reading →


The pain of abuse

It’s hard to describe what it feels like to relive the pain. Not the pain of being hit. After a while, abuse becomes just another part of life, pain you learn to live with. No, it’s very much more the pain of feeling so alone and vulnerable. You’re hurt, crying, and scared. And there is no one to protect you. The other women are just as scared. Even if you run to their house, there is every chance he will follow you there and then they will be potential victims too. As for the men, while they may try to Continue reading →


Both Palestinians and Jews deserve a peaceful place to live

Growing up in Atlantic City in the 50s, the closest I came to greenery was Columbus Plaza. This was a one block square of grass, the occasional tree, and a very large statue of Christopher Columbus. Living in an all-Italian neighborhood, this was as close as we got to a national hero. Granted he didn’t sail under an Italian flag. And granted he didn’t claim lands for Italy, which didn’t really exist then. And sure, he never actually stood on North American soil. But as far as our parents were concerned, he was Italian, and he was a hero. So Continue reading →


Collegiality – it ain’t what it used to be

I grew up as part of the infamous 60s generation. At the time, I thought our government could not be more broken, less mindful of the people it served or less responsive to national needs. I was so wrong.

Here’s the definition of collegial. “Relating to or involving shared responsibility, as among a group of colleagues.” Here’s a further explanation of that definition. “Relating to a friendly relationship between colleagues; used to describe a method of working in which responsibility is shared among several people.”

I learned about collegiality in civics classes, something I’m guessing isn’t taught much anymore. I Continue reading →


Shakespeare was not out to make high school students crazy

Do they still teach Shakespeare in high school? Are there still students trying to read Macbeth or Hamlet and wondering why Shakespeare thought he should use language that is just confusing and hard to understand? Do they wonder what kind of a sadist would do that to kids just trying to finish a report on Ophelia?

So, here’s the answer. Shakespeare is not, to the best of our knowledge, a sadist. He did not write his plays to cause high school students to scream into their pillows as they try to decipher what Iago means or Shylock is saying. What Continue reading →


Is Bronson Anchorage’s dumbest mayor?

As we draw closer and (thankfully) closer to the end of the Bronson administration’s term in office, I look back at the debris strewn path he is leaving behind, filled with destroyed reputations, demoralized employees and a homeless population he apparently plans to keep homeless, and wonder what he thought he was doing.

He was new to government. Perhaps starting at the top was not a good idea. Maybe he should have started closer to the bottom, so he’d have some appreciation of what working for municipal government is really all about.

For instance, most people will tell you that Continue reading →


The Supremes have become a bad joke

Growing up, I was taught about the three branches of our government. (Legislative, judicial and executive for those of you who slept through civics class.) Of all three, the one that stood out as most untouchable, pure and high minded was the Supreme Court. We were taught that because an appointment to the Court was for a lifetime, it removed all chances to sway its decisions. This is because they supposedly had nothing to be swayed by. They had a job for life no matter what they decided on any given case. The idea that exclusive vacations, private jets and Continue reading →