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 Tuesday, 31 July 2007
Tuesday, 31 July 2007 07:52:15 (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00) ( )

I was listening to a segment on NPR this morning, about Senator Stevens from Alaska, who may have accepted bribes from an oil company. I wasn't remotely surprised to hear that yet another Republican politician is probably bought and paid for by big business - nothing new there.

But here's what caught my ear: Mr. Stevens was part of the Territorial government and was one of the people who orchestrated Alaska's statehood! This just isn't the sort of thing a person usually considers.

I grew up on a steady diet of books about exploring the frontier and settling the territories. These stories are the core of the American mythology: stories of tough, honest men and women braving the wilderness and the greedy, dishonest men and women to carve out the nation we know today as the United States.

But they are history, as in dead and dusty. At least to most people, including myself.

So here comes this radio segment, reminding me that some of that history is still alive.

Whether Mr. Stevens is crooked or not is something we'll find out as the investigation unfolds. But regardless of whether he's one of the tough, honest men, or one of the greedy, dishonest ones, I sit in awe of the fact that he lived through a period of time that saw the transformation of a territory into a state.

Comments [2] | | # 
Tuesday, 31 July 2007 11:08:05 (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)
That process isn't over if some of the people in Puerto Rico have their way. But my understanding in the last vote they took on it that most didn't want to chagne their status. But there's more than one American territory that's still out there. I was always wondering when Canada would apply for full statehood... ;-)
Wednesday, 01 August 2007 11:21:02 (Central Standard Time, UTC-06:00)
It DID always seem a little weird to me that he was so obsessed about drilling in it was getting a much bigger push than it warrented, out of proportion to it's potential benefits and in the face of some pretty significant downsides.
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