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Chapter 13 of Eric Boehlert’s “Bloggers on the Bus” – An Alaska Update

9:40 am in Uncategorized by EdwardTeller

Chapter Thirteen of Eric Boehlert’s fascinating new book, Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press, discusses issues surrounding how the elevation of Alaska governor Sarah Palin to being John McCain’s running mate in the 2008 presidential election campaign challenged Alaska’s fledgeling blogger community. The chapter is essentially divided into two sections: The first details how our ad hoc team of progressive Alaskan bloggers dealt responsibly with getting information about Palin to the public, how we helped Outside (those who aren’t from Alaska) journalists, and how we shared resources openly and responsibly. The second part of this chapter of Eric’s book describes how the story of Palin’s youngest child, Trig, was handled, comparing responsible coverage in the blogosphere to the rest.

I only have two mild points on the Alaska chapter. It misses the story of how many false tales about Palin – Sambo beat the Bitch being the best example – that we killed or tried to kill. But how was Eric supposed to know? We killed the stories’ credibility, usually within minutes or hours. He does clearly differentiate between our progressive bloggers’ veracity and article quality, compared to the material covered in the second half of the chapter. Read the rest of this entry →

Alaska Update from One of Those Pesky, Annoying Alaska Bloggers

3:09 pm in Uncategorized by EdwardTeller

Alaska’s Gov. Sarah Palin created an alternative universe this January, that conjured an image of herself as victim of "Bored, anonymous, pathetic bloggers who lie."

She was never able to cite the lie. And early this week, Palin credited these same pesky bloggers with spreading lies that led to the defeat of her nominee for Attorney General. To illustrate her point, she once again failed to cite the lie she believed we had created.

What we have done, though, must annoy her. We have challenged her to the point that she can no longer claim the mantle she once wore as an "ethics reformer."

Between Palin’s initial complaint and this week, Alaska bloggers have helped stir interest in the food and fuel crisis in villages on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, watched over her administration’s role in the North Pacific Management Council’s Bering Sea Chinook Salmon Bycatch deliberations, filed ethics complaints against the governor, and played a key role in the defeat of Wayne Anthony Ross, her nominee for Alaska Attorney General.
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Progressive Alaskans Win W.A.R. Battle in the Siege of Palingrad

3:27 pm in Uncategorized by EdwardTeller

Just minutes ago, the GOP-dominated Alaska Legislature rejected Gov. Sarah Palin’s nominee to replace her disgraced Attorney General. Although Alaska’s mainstream media failed to see this Palin defeat coming, several Alaska blogs and civil rights activists combined efforts to educate the public and get them to write to legislators. Some predicted this outcome as early as last weekend.

In a 35 to 23 vote of both houses (one senate seat is vacant, one member was absent), no Democrats crossed party lines. But most GOP defections stated on the floor of the joint session, that unprecedented numbers of phone calls, letters and emails from constituents were the deciding element.

As Alaska civil rights activists from the Alaska Native, women’s rights, LBGTQ and environmentalist communities worked together to bring public attention to nominee Wayne Anthony Ross’ dismal record over the past 30 years, progressive bloggers put up dozens of well-informed posts. Several of us devoted hundreds of extra hours of our time to follow through on leads we discovered through emails sent anonymously to us. A few of us dug up old letters, articles and meeting minutes related to Ross.
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Is President Obama Off on the Wrong Foot with Helen Thomas?

8:24 am in Uncategorized by EdwardTeller

Every time George Bush refused to answer a question from Helen Thomas, the left blogosphere was all over him. In spite of the fact that President Obama refused to answer Thomas’ first question to him, and denied her a followup, the left seems mostly silent.

Here was Ms. Thomas’ question:

Mr. President, do you think that Pakistan are maintaining the safe havens in Afghanistan for these so-called terrorists? And also, do you know of any country in the Middle East that has nuclear weapons?

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Emmonak and Yukon-Kuskokwim Relief Effort Update

3:19 pm in Uncategorized by EdwardTeller

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Alaska blogger and reporter Denis Zaki arrived in Emmonak yesterday evening. He stayed last night at the school, and began interviewing people around town immediately. He attempted to attend a meeting this morning, between recently arrived State of Alaska employees and village officials. Palin’s people wanted him out of the picture though, so the village officials, on behalf of the state, asked him to leave the meeting.

As we enter the second week of public awareness of the Lower Yukon midwinter crisis, the Palin administration, finally reacting, is very aware that this story gained national attention through a few liberal AM radio program hosts, and progressive Alaska bloggers, centered around Alaskans for Truth.

That group, started in response to the September 2008 takeover of the Palin administration’s publicity and administrative apparatus by Bush administration cleaner and hitman Ed O’Callaghan, is the most active and persistent team of critics in Alaska of Palin’s policies, actions and ethical methods. I’m a proud member. Read the rest of this entry →

Saturday Pathetic Alaska Blogger Update

7:31 pm in Uncategorized by EdwardTeller

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Dennis Zaki hasn’t made it to Bethel yet, let alone Emmonak. He is stuck at what he calls the "Jay Hammond International Airport." That’s what a lot of us have begun calling the Ted Stevens International Airport in Anchorage. The Weather across Alaska has been ferocious for weeks. First, very cold – now warm, windy and wet.

It looks like three of the four huge low pressure systems that smacked Alaska this past week have done their work, so Dennis may be heading on over to the lower Yukon tomorrow. By the time Bethel and Emmonak and the lower Yukon airports and airfields open, there will probably be a backlog of relief supplies coming in from other Alaska Native villages, the huge Alaska Native community in Anchorage, from donations made through our Alaskans for Truth international relief network (handled by Mudflats, so far), and other sources.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin looked really, really, REALLY pissed Friday, when having to answer a couple of questions at her long-delayed energy plan rollout in Anchorage. When I find video or a still picture of that look, I’ll post it.

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Alaska’s Bored, Pathetic, Anonymous Bloggers Raise $5,000.00 for Emmonak in Five Hours

9:54 am in Uncategorized by EdwardTeller

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Yesterday afternoon, Alaska’s progressive bloggers responded to the growing winter crisis in the lower Yukon villages, most notably Emmonak. As word spread of the looming food and fuel crisis there, we decided to get our reporter in (no simple task!), raise funds, and tell the true story of Alaska bloggers, and how we help each other in the Far North.

Longtime Alaska Report editor and owner (and one-time firedoglake videographer) Dennis Zaki found out about the looming crisis in Emmonak at the beginning of the week. He called around, and discovered that the crisis is real, and that no established news outlets in Alaska or Outside had intentions of going out there and getting some hard news stories and video footage together.

Dennis, though not a member of Alaskans for Truth, the small, close-knit group of progressive bloggers and community organizers who are trying to get our legislature to address executive ethics reform, sought our help early Wednesday afternoon. Collectively, we got out of our moms’ basements, shed our PJ’s, left the twinkies and bags of jolly ranchers on the coffee tables in front of our worn-out couches, and got to work.

Actually, we took time off from our jobs as teachers, Read the rest of this entry →