Keli Booher Campaigns for Anchorage Assembly

Keli Booher, 19,  ran for the south Anchorage seat on the Anchorage Assembly. Booher lost to incumbent republican Jennifer Johnston with 34% of the vote.  Knocking on doors, Booher discusses the issues with people in her own neighborhood.

With the campaign drawing to a close their is an intensity in Booher’s voice and that of her teenage campaign manager Adam Neal. The young democrat is even getting support from tea party activists.


UAA Students protest proposed 22% tuition increase

By Joshua Tucker

UA tuition could increase 15 percent by 2012, adding up to a 22 percent increase by 2013 as proposed by outgoing University President Mark Hamilton.

Tuition increases will occur incrementally from fall 2010 through 2013.

On April 15 and 16, the UA Board of Regents, the body that makes the final decisions on tuition, met in Dillingham to discuss the potential tuition increases. A final decision will be voted on in September.

Students responded with outrage to Hamilton’s proposal. On April 15, more than 30 protesters met in the UAA Student Union for speeches by USUAA Government Relations Director Nick Moe, outgoing USUAA President Michaela Hernandez and public communications senior Zach Liszka. Students also protested the proposed tuition increases on the campuses of UAS and UAF.

Over 1,000 students joined a Facebook group opposing the increase within 48 hours of the group’s creation.

“Enough is enough. Tuition has increased eight years in a row,” Moe said. Compiling proposed increases through 2013, Moe continued, “22 percent is about 500 dollars per student, per semester.”

UAA Chancellor Fran Ulmer asserts that tuition would only increase by $128 in the fall 2010 and $364 in the fall 2011 for an in-state student based on hypothetical class load of eight lower division credits and seven upper division credits. This does not account for the total 22 percent increase that is being proposed.

“Whether we like it or not, tuition increases are going to happen,” Hernandez said. “But what we do have a say in is to what degree they happen. We are in an economic recession. You have to propose something more manageable.”

Protesters marched around the UAA campus from the Science Building to the Lucy Cuddy Center and back to the Student Union.

“We’re not faceless numbers. We’re not a blank check. Every dollar they take from us is a dollar less we have,” Liszka said. “In a bad economy, that’s bad news for us. I think we’re the future of Alaska and we are the last people to have the burden placed on us.”

“Too poor to pay more,” Kaitlynn Jackson’s sign read, a sophomore majoring in English.

Jackson is one of many students who say they are suffering through the economic recession.

“My family has three people in college and my dad just got demoted and got his pay effectively cut in half,” Jackson said. “I’m going to make my voice heard. I’m willing to not go to school for a while or go somewhere else.”

USUAA Senators Peter Finn, Catherine Helle and Aimee Stanley flew to the Regents meeting in Dillingham to speak against raising tuition.

Many students were frustrated that the meeting was in Dillingham because they could not attend. Also, the Board of Regents chose not to accept testimony by speakerphone at this meeting.

“The desires of UAA students to have affordable tuition were well received by the Board of Regents,” Helle said, a sophomore studying English literature and Alaska Native Studies.

The UA system is under financial pressure from multiple angles. Language written into Alaska’s operating budget for 2012 caps the amount of funds the state will give to UA at 129 percent of the funds that University raises through tuition, fees and donations.

The legislature has never used a mechanism like this before to cap funds to the UA system. Currently, state funds equal 135 percent of funds raised by the university. The Legislative intent language in the operating budget indicates a long-term goal of reducing that to 125 percent.

Calls to the co-chairs of the House Finance Committee Rep. Bill Stoltz and Rep. Mike Hawker, who were responsible for the cap, were not returned.

“This basically says, University of Alaska go raise money,” Ulmer said. “I didn’t know that’s what my job was.”

“It sends a definite message to the University to increase revenue, I don’t see a rational relationship between the (129 percent) ratio and what the purpose of the University is,” Ulmer said.

Ulmer acknowledged the change could serve as incentive to the Board of Regents to raise tuition.

“If we continue to have big enrollment increases without tuition increases we are going to have a big squeeze” Ulmer said.


4/19 2nd Amendment events in Wasilla and Anchorage AK draw armed supporters, american revolution rhetoric

Joshua Tucker (c)

The slideshow on my flikr has many more.

joshua tucker (c)

Sarah Palin’s marching orders echo in Wasilla AK.

joshua tucker (c)

Joe Miller republican candidate for U.S. Senate challenging Sen.  Murkowski in the August republican primary speaks to a crowd of armed supporters in downtown Anchorage. The firearm in the foreground with the banana clip is an SKS.


activist and folk musician David Rovics lit the horizon on fire in Alaska

i just got back from traveling  with David Rovics and the ‘wolfpack,’  recording at two of Rovic’s three Alaska shows this weekend in Homer and Sewerd.

It made me think of  ‘almost famous.’  Heartbroken at missing the Anchorage show, i called up the troubadour world traveler-planning to hitchhike to the next show, but he invited me along for the ride with his stories and “‘songs of social significance.”

“David Rovics is the musical verzsion of Democracy Now,” Amy Goodman said, I’ll post an intimate audio story for Alaska community radio in the beginning of May and link to video when it comes online.  For now, enjoy a couple photos of the gig in Seward.

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Over 200 mp3s of David Rovics music are free in the audio section of his website, there have been more than 1 million downloads.

contact: joshuatreetucker@gmail.com


why i love red bradly

red bradly phone message by joshua tucker
Calling all members of the bradley collective, hearken to the witticisms of red, and comment please


YOUNG & AMBITIOUS: 19 year-old Keli Booher knocks on doors in her campaign for Anchorage Assembly

Keli Booher Campaign Profile By Joshua Tucker

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Keli Booher, 19, is running for the south Anchorage seat on the Anchorage Assembly.  Knocking on doors, Booher discusses property taxes, school funding, a dangerous traffic circle and her age –  among other things with people in her own neighborhood.

With the campaign drawing to a close their is an intensity in Booher’s voice and that of her teenage campaign manager Adam Neal. The young democrat is even getting support from tea party activists in her drive to unseat the incumbent republican Jennifer Johnston.


French village went insane after CIA spiked its bread with LSD

The odd world never ceases to amaze me. Clearly the CIA did not care how much pain they were causing,  but were they smirking when they choose the french to experiment on?