Begich’s veterans bill passes the Senate

From the Hill: 

The Senate passed a bill Thursday that would increase compensation benefits for veterans with disabilities. Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska) introduced S. 2258, the Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act, which would direct the secretary of Veterans Affairs to increase the rate of veterans’ disability compensation starting on Dec. 1. The cost-of-living increase would match that of Social Security benefits. The bill now heads to the House for further action.


16 thoughts on “Begich’s veterans bill passes the Senate

  1. IV in West Anc

    This is cute. Actually, laughable. Does Harry Reid and Mark Begich really think that we’re going to jump up and down over this 12th hour political ploy of a legislative action that will never become a law? The truth is the facts. Begich has failed to represent us and has no record of his own. That’s why we’ve seen all the negative and horrific ads that attack and lie about his opponent. Will be looking forward to voting against the Despicable Begich.

  2. Use To Be A Walker Suupporter

    I use to be a Walker supporter. The Mallott addition actually improved the ticket. I always had a relatively low opinion of Fleener. However, the comments, all of them collectiively, by Crude is Rude has forced me to rethink the race. Now, I’m voting for Parnell.

  3. db

    How will Walker finance the pipeline? That’s easy. He will use all of the Permanent Fund because it is we, Alaskans who will own the huge hole.

  4. CRUDE is RUDE

    A comprehensive Alaska development plan might surprise you,
    and it will be fun for everybody…
    I’m half Athabascan and have wintered in the bush many times.
    You learn stuff by experience that you can’t learn anywhere else.

  5. Anonymous

    Can the inane ramblings of crude is rude please be relegated to a separate link so we don’t have to waste time scrolling through his diatribes. And I thought Willis was long winded!

  6. Jim Wilke

    You make good points but … there aren’t enough people in Alaska to make an instate pipeline work. Anchorage and Kenai already have gas, what’s left?

    Attract industry … where? Make what? Carve out a city on Pt. McKenzie, build a gas line there, set up a plant to make Tupperware containers and then ship them to Seattle? Perhaps not.

  7. CRUDE is RUDE

    Jon K …. If you ever have a chance to meet me in person, you’d die laughing.
    I’m a funny guy, but I’m also serious as a heart-attack.

    Your commentary seems to be rushed and not carefully considered.
    Maybe you’re too busy multi-tasking to do any one thing correctly ??

    Not trying to offend you good-buddy, but seriously; I don’t think you could figure out how to pour your piss out of your own boot if I told you the instructions were written on the bottom of the sole of that boot.
    Got too much caffeine at Starbucks this morning ??
    You are totally lost in the woods.

    You said: “10 years ago we would have lost billions in oil.”
    You’re totally clueless about hydrocarbons.
    I have known AOGCC is totally clueless for the past 30 years.
    >> You need to realize I was one of a small group of young guys in Fairbanks in 1967-74 who took great risk of trying to educate Alaskans about chemistry&physics and how it applies to the efficiency of managing Alaska’s resources.
    I tried to tell you in 1971 that BigOil was operating at 10% thermodynamic efficiency, wasting 90%.

    For the past 40 years Alaska’s value in CRUDE could be at least 3-times greater if we gasified the CRUDE into light-alkanes.

    Big corporations are 99% inertia and 1% brains…
    they know very little about hydrogen, and even less about water.

    TAPS has been horribly inefficient and wasteful…
    and with the pitiful billions profits gained we have wasted a resource that a sensible guy like myself knows should have lasted at least 200 years.
    In Texas they say: “Give an Alaskan enough rope and they will hang themselves with it”

    FERC ??? I know how to sit down with FERC in a quiet discussion with FERC and get my paperwork approved.
    I can pop open my laptop and push a powerpoint presentation with convincing accuracy.
    —this silly little pile of comments is not a proper forum for this full discussion.

  8. Jon k

    Where is Walker’s plan? How exactly is he going to pay for it? Who is going to oversee all components of the project? How is he going to get through FERC? What data is he going to rely on to get an EIS? There are many more questions you didn’t address but we will leave it here. One additional point: in we built the gas like 20 years ago or even 10 years ago we would have lost billions in oil. The timing never made sense from a value perspective until 2020 or so. Any sooner and we would have lost a ton or so.

  9. Awwwwwwww

    Awwwwww, Harry Reid let a Begich bill pass the Senate! Too bad there’s just not enough time to push it through the House before Election Day. Darn.

  10. CRUDE is RUDE

    Jon K … Nope, Not Insane for at least a million reasons

    But for the sake of brevity and speaking to your talking points in particular,
    I’ll give you some of my commentary on some of your assumptions.

    1) Walker has a realistic and practical plan to get gas to Asia, much quicker than the Parnell Pipeline to the Permanent Fund. The key difference is Walker’s plan is more flexible in design, and exposes us to much less near & longterm risk, not just financial risk, strategic, social, & structural risks too.
    + Walker emphasizes that the Best Market for Alaska’s Gas is Alaska, then to any export market.
    Walker’s Plan is comprehensive and experienced.

    Maybe you haven’t noticed, but Walker was right on international schedule for pushing to build a state owned gasline to the easiest export terminal 20 years ago…
    Balash is in Asia this week [with BP as his chaperone/babysitter] – but he’s 10years late.
    BP is busy fishing for billions in Alaska pockets to pay for it’s $40billion booboo in GOM that the federal judge said BP is 67% responsible for…
    Sept. 1st – 2014 = Putin breaks ground on Russia-China gas pipeline, world’s biggest.
    Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli have launched the construction of the first part of Gazprom’s Power of Siberia pipeline.
    The 3,968 km pipeline linking gas fields in eastern Siberia to China will be the world’s largest fuel network in the world. Both Putin and Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli have called the project the world’s largest construction project, as investment from both countries will be more than $70 billion.

    [now don’t let the GAZPROM $70billion fool you, it’s BS also, just trying to trick Alaskans into overextending themselves.. this what’s known as “economic warfare” .. and Parnell is just a patsy for Putin ]

    2) the legislature voted overwhemingly 52-8 in support of Parnell’s plan….
    ~~~~60%Alaskans are GULLIBLE, the rest of the world knows this.
    Since 1867 many Alaskans found a career in politics because they were the last guy sitting on the barstool at sunrise.
    …. and 918 people committed suicide in Jonestown,Guyana in 1978 by blindly following the propaganda of one man …
    ..and the Hale-Boppers in 1997 too.
    Gullibility of Alaskan legislators also weighed heavily on allowing TAPS to become a big stupid inefficient problematic pipe.
    In 1971 at a small public meeting at UAF a bigwig from Exxon told me personally that the TAPS project will cost less than $2billion to build, and at that time the legislature was already trading in their rubberstamps for branding irons to scorch their automatic approvals into the paperwork.

    Parnell’s plan chooses to consolidate 100% of Alaska’s gas into a $65billion gold-plated monopoly-pipe is just plain criminal, far beyond stupid.
    I helped build 200 houses in Fairbanks before TAPS, without these houses TAPS might have cost another billion.
    If the 10″ fuelgasline that stops at PS4-Galbraith was continued to Fairbanks in 1972 it would have saved a billion; and I argued this point in 1971 at meetings in Fairbanks, but was roundly ridiculed.
    TAPS was one of the most poorly planned projects in history.
    And, still to this day TAPS and the CRUDE-system operates at 10% thermodynamic efficiency;
    this means that 90% of the energy in Alaska’s hydrocarbon deposits is wasted by the time it does work for the consumers.
    Compare this to propane, which is currently 60-80% efficient.
    Old Alaskan pipeliners like me do not want to repeat this insane circus again.
    I helped pound the first survey stakes to build the haulroad.
    We built TAPS thru the wilderness without cellphones or computers.
    Building the haulroad was the hardest part, building the pipe was comparatively easy.
    –Now the gasline ROW is firmly established, and all you boomer-clowns think it’s gonna cost $65billion ??
    … Frankly, I don’t think anybody who seriously thinks $65billion is mentally qualified to work in a management position.

    3) If we want to have a larger role –control our destiny or “be in the driver’s seat” — that means we have to pay for the majority of the costs associated with this project.
    ===> OK I’ll play with that; but you go on to assume: “it will be the largest infrastructure project in North American history.”
    —-WRONG WRONG WRONG, this is all BS & Hype.
    This BS only follows if you want to expose Alaska to a $65billion financial risk,
    and it has nothing to do with the goal of building the gas-transport capacity of 5bcfd across Alaska.
    Parnell got his engineering plans from a CrackerJack Box [actually much worse].
    Parnell and the legislature are not qualified to do the plumbing in my house, nevermind approve a properly designed gas-industry in Alaska.
    Alaska’s gas-industry and gas-transport system need to be built at the same time using a sensible integrated deployment.
    [metaphor: almost all houses get the roof installed before the interior is finished for a very simple reason, but if you ask this question to folks with no construction experience they will often stumble/fail with the answer.]
    —-Most importantly I would never place more than 10% trust in the Oil-Industry to develop a proper Alaskan Gas-Industry Infrastructure; wayy tooo much conflict of interest.

    4) how much time and momentum will we lose if we follow Walker and end this process?
    ANSWER: NONE, because you are walking into quicksand wearing sunglasses.

    5) a key component of this project is marketing the state’s gas. who is going to get a higher price for our gas?
    YES, its OUR gas, not Xxxon’s gas.
    Exxon knows the entire planet is awash in methane, the problem is we already are making too much CO2 and gas is slightly better than crude for carrying hydrogen to balance the global chemistry.
    The oil industry has been flaring and wasting gas for the past 100years, and is still doing it in many places like the Bakken and worldwide.
    The best market for Alaska’s Gas is Alaska’s in-state value added industries.
    We should be not only be focused on LNG, but polyolefins and new-GTL as well…

    goog: siluria gasoline

    goog: flexsteel pipe

    goog: alaska railroad interior energy project

    There’s a lot of things Alaskans do not know about passing gas, but Dr.Walker and I are here to help you make the best of your gasbloat and get a speedy recovery while keeping your medical costs to a minimum.

  11. watcher

    Nice try Mark. Too little, too late.
    This is the boy wonders second bill to pass the Senate (the other was what, renaming a post office or courthouse?) In five years.
    This is, quite simply, a desperate gimme in hopes to bring back a portion of the military/veteran vote.

  12. Jon K

    This is insane for at least five reasons:

    1) Walker has no plan to get gas to Asia. All he has is slogans. His website is a joke. There is nothing meaningful about how he would move this project forward.

    2) the legislature voted overwhemingly 52-8 in support of Parnell’s plan. Under this bi partisan approved legislation, the legislature and the administration will continue to play a major role over the next five years in shaping the details of the state’s involvement in the project.

    3) If we want to have a larger role –control our destiny or “be in the driver’s seat” — that means we have to pay for the majority of the costs associated with this project. We don’t have the money to do that. But more importantly we don’t have the expertise. This project – – if it moves forward — will be the largest infrastructure project in North American history. Why anyone would want the Alaska government in the “driver’s seat” of something so big and complicated is beyond me.

    4) how much time and momentum will we lose if we follow Walker and end this process? How will the markets respond to a sovereign ditching a process approved in 2013 by 52-8? How much will it cost us to purchase all of the data so we can continue with the FERC, DOE, and NEPA processes? And how exactly does Walker envision that we get in the driver’s seat? Will anyone in the press ask Walker these questions?

    5) a key component of this project is marketing the state’s gas. who is going to get a higher price for our gas – Exxon or Walker’s former clients who want to purchase the gas? Alaskans need to realize that we get the highest value by being aligned with Exxon as opposed to Mitsuibishi or KOGAS. Walker of course has major conflicts of interest – his biggest client is the City of Valdez which doesn’t care about what value we get for our gas – it just wants the infrastructure so it can get property tax revenue. Walker’s other clients are the Asia customers who want the lowest possible price for Alaska gas. Exxon, BP, Conoco, and Alalskans in contrast want the highest price. At least on marketing our gas our interests are completely aligned with the producers.

    Kudos to Begich.

  13. CRUDE is RUDE

    Mark Begich does good work for Alaska in the Senate…
    politics and leadership are often at odds with eachother..
    it’s hard getting work done when antagonists are biting your leg like a rabid dog..

    Alaska has many troubles now….
    …here’s a big one to alert yourselves to:

    Alaskans must wake up !!!

    Parnell’s plan is to ramrod a gasline boondoggle that puts the control of Alaska’s main infrastructure into the hands of foreign based multinational corporations…

    …if this happens we might as well give the Alaska Railroad to the Red Chinese, the road system to Russia, the drinking water to Pakistan, and the rivers to North Korea.

    Some of the old pipeliners who support Walker/Mallott know how to develop Alaska’s gas-industry with great efficiency and for maximum stability over the long haul, with very little financial risk…

    Walker knows the Parnell Pipeline is a pipeline straight into the Permanent Fund..
    The bogus bloated $65billion bullshit is like the ladder that has a sign on the top that plainly says “Not a Step”…
    BigOil is trying to get Alaska to stand on that step and pick plums high on the tree, then while Alaskans are busy picking plums somebody kicks the ladder out from under Alaskans and steals all the fruit while Alaska is in the hospital.


    Walker concerned with Alaska gas line deal
    Becky Bohrer Associated Press | Posted: Friday, September 12, 2014 1:53 pm
    JUNEAU, Alaska – Independent gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker says the structure for a major Alaska gas project is “fatally flawed.”
    Walker said Alaska isn’t in the “driver’s seat,” and is letting companies with projects around the world determine if this one advances.
    Walker, who is challenging Republican Gov. Sean Parnell, said he would want to look at what’s been done so far and if it makes sense for the state to pull out, it will.
    Alaska is pursuing the mega-project with Exxon Mobil Corp., BP, ConocoPhillips, TransCanada Corp. and the Alaska Gasline Development Corp., or AGDC. Parties have the opportunity to get out if they want.
    The plan envisions TransCanada owning at least part of Alaska’s interest in the pipeline and gas treatment plant and AGDC holding its interest in liquefaction facilities.


    Due Dilligence – Do your homework, it could save your life…

    For those of you who think Parnell, AGDC, and half of the Legislature has good judgement in choosing which companies are best qualified in working on projects in Alaska for the best interest of Alaskans…

    Here’s a simple exercise every Alaskan should take the time to look into…
    just do a little bit of simple googling and reading to connect the dots…

    goog : saic agdc
    goog: saic fraud
    goog : saic leidos
    goog: leidos alaska
    goog: saic blackwater

    IMHO; AGDC has misappropriated $200million hidden under HB189[27th] and paid it out to a collective of corporations which is not qualified to do business in Alaska.
    This type of business climate blurs the lines of EVERYTHING

    A very big sector of corporate America has some very serious mental health issues, and Parnells crowd is clueless about defending Alaska from this pervasive problem of predatory pilfering.

    Walker&Mallott are our best hope of defending Alaska from the epidemic of fraud sweeping the nation.

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