Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Which candidates have VECO's backing. What does VECO want from them.

The Biggest Permanent Fund Raid Ever Attempted Was attempted at VECO's direction.

I went after Ben Stevens when Ben, at VECOƒ'’s request, introduced legislation to end Alaska'’s tradition of distributing half of the Permanent Fund'’s earnings as dividends.

However, the biggest raid ever attempted on the Permanent Fund was orchestrated, also at VECO’s request, by Governor Tony Knowles in 1999. That'’s what that vote was all about.

Tony attempted to get voter permission to raid the Permanent Funds profits and principle. Tony'’s proposal would have abandoned the "Principles of Prudent Management" (Legally binding investment principles defined in common law that world class investment funds, like the Permanent Fund, are held to.)

Alaska'’s constitution bars our Legislators from spending principle but they can spend profits. And, by tradition, we have always appropriated half to dividends and put the other half back into the principle of the Fund. Tony'’s scam was to make over $4 Billion available for spending, by converting principle to profit.

Rather than selling stocks based on lackluster expectations for future earnings, Tony proposed selling stocks based on their appreciation since purchase. Conceptually, a share of stock purchased for $1, and now worth $1000, could be sold to yield spendable profit.

Tony asked his Attorney General to issue an opinion saying it was legal and got our Republican Legislature to put his proposal on the ballot. VECO then raised hundreds of thousands of dollars trying to get you to vote yes. Had they gotten their way, the rest of the Fund would have soon vanished and our tradition of dividends would be history.

Ben Stevens, Tony Knowles and VECO all conspired to trick Alaskans into patching potholes and paying teachers with Permanent Fund money. Had they succeeded, our legislators would have less pressure to get our fair share from oil. If the oil companies get their way, BP will be sucking our last barrel of oil out of the ground just about the time we spend our last dime out of the Permanent fund and Alaska would become one of the poorest places on the Planet soon there after.

A vote for any candidate that took VECO money is a vote for someone VECO is counting on to do their dirty work. The overwhelming majority of candidates taking VECO money are Republicans running for the House or Senate. But don'’t be fooled. Tony Knowles has taken more VECO money than any of them. For me, ending VECO'’s corrupting influence on our government trumps all other issues. If you vote Palin for Governor and Vote Democrat for your representatives in the House and Senate, you will be voting against VECO'’s wishes.

Ray Metcalfe:

I can be reached at RayinAK@aol.com

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Corruption comes in two flavors… Democrat and Republican.

While Governor Knowles gave BP a free, $200 million oil lease, VECO and friends laundered $400 thousand through a Washington DC bank account, known as "“the Governor'’s Fund",” created for Knowles’ personal use. They evaded Alaska'’s contribution limits doing about the same thing that got Congressman Tom Delay indicted in Texas.

When BP attempted to takeover ARCO and monopolize Alaska'’s oil industry, Knowles sided with BP by ordering his Attorney General to oppose the Federal Trade Commission'’s lawsuit to stop BP'’s takeover What good is Knowles'’ negotiating experience if he'’s negotiating for the wrong team?

VECO's more recent cash for Ben Stevens’ favors wasn't even a little bit subtle. It took the cooperation of every Republican in the State Legislature for Ben to preside as Senate President while taking bribes from VECO. Any legislator who says they didn't know is either lying, or way too stupid to represent you.

Over the years, the VECO owned "“Voice of The Times"” has published numerous articles advocating the end of Alaska'’s PFD program. If VECO can get us to patch our potholes and pay our teachers with Permanent Fund money, there will be less pressure for our legislators to get what we should from VECO'’s oil company clients who produce our oil.

In 2005, when Ben Stevens introduced legislation to initiate VECO'’s plan, I began a campaign to expose the money Ben was taking from VECO.

Long before that, it was Tony Knowles I was writing about for doing the same thing. ThatÂ’s what that special election in 1999 was all about. Tony was trying to persuade you to give him permission to raid the Permanent Fund and spend it on capital projects. VECO'’s owners raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for a campaign to get you to vote yes.

Any Alaskan willing to put Democrat Tony Knowles back in the Governor'’s chair or vote to send any former Republican member of the House or Senate back to Juneau should just save VECO the trouble and hand deliver their last PFD to VECO. Then move to North Dakota. That would raise the average IQ in both states.

If you doubt the content of this article, just follow the money. VECO'’s friends, who have given tens of thousands to re-elect House and Senate Republicans, have abandoned the Republican nominee for Governor. She'’s not for sale! They are backing their old friend Tony.

If you agree that ending the corruption is the most important issue facing Alaska, and trust that my campaign to end corruption is on the right track, please vote Democrat for House and Senate and vote Sarah Palin, Republican for Governor.

Ray Metcalfe

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Alaskans, not Exxon, own the resources

Let's stop living in fear of the day when Sen. Ted Stevens and Rep. Don Young retire from Congress. They are serving Alaska admirably, but the day will come for them to leave. When it does, we must face up to the promise we made at statehood.

The Alaska people struck a deal in 1958. Our Statehood Compact granted us 103 million acres and the subsurface resources beneath those lands. In return, we pledged to use those resources to pay for the governmental services the federal government had been providing.

Gov. Bill Egan wisely selected the lands at the North Slope. Several years later, I demanded that Atlantic Richfield drill at Prudhoe Bay when Exxon, BP and others had pulled out. "You drill, or I will," I threatened.

They drilled that historic well and discovered our young state owned an ocean of oil and a vast supply of natural gas. This is just the beginning. We have only begun to explore Alaska's sedimentary basins, and if used wisely, these riches will fill the gap that Ted and Don will leave behind, unless someone sells us out.

In spite of oil company pronouncements, they do not own the oil and gas on the Slope. It's ours. They have the right to produce what they find as long as they honor their lease agreements. But Article VIII, Section 8 in our constitution, requires that "Leases and permits shall provide ... for forfeiture in the event of breach of conditions."

Exxon holds the leases for the Point Thomson field, east of Prudhoe. Point Thomson is our second-largest field and one of the 20 largest undeveloped fields worldwide. It contains several hundred million barrels of oil and eight trillion cubic feet of gas and is the key to the prompt construction of a gas line.

Since Exxon discovered these resources, it has warehoused them to fit its corporate timetable. It has filed 21 successive development plans, none of which has been implemented, although the trans-Alaska pipeline is only half full and natural gas is urgently needed by both Alaskans and Americans from coast to coast.

When elected governor in 1990, I called Exxon CEO Larry Rawl to Juneau and told him, "Larry, I want Point Thomson back." My goal was a billion-dollar Exxon Valdez oil spill settlement, and I wanted to get his attention. Rawl replied, "Governor, could you give us a little time?" I replied, "Sure, I'll give you time, but you know the terms of the lease."

For oil spill damages, he estimated they owed us about $300 million. I replied that we wanted at least $1.2 billion. Sixty days later in Washington, D.C., we settled for $1.1 billion. But Exxon has failed since to develop a single barrel of oil or a cubic foot of gas from Point Thomson.

Last October Natural Resources Commissioner Tom Irwin and Mark Myers, director of oil and gas, found them in default and announced the state was taking Point Thomson back. This is not new in the oil and gas business. It's done around the world whenever companies violate their leases for their own benefit at the expense of the host countries.

Instead of commending Irwin, Gov. Frank Murkowski accepted his resignation. Six of Irwin's top departmental staff members, including Myers, resigned in protest, and the Alaska people were outraged.

The governor replaced Irwin with long-time aide Mike Menge, who immediately reversed Irwin's action. Now Menge has scheduled hearings in November so that Exxon can plead its case while the lame duck Murkowski administration is still in office.

One wonders who is pushing the governor's chief of staff, Jim Clark, and Menge to do this. Certainly not the people of Alaska. Who are they working for? Certainly not the people of Alaska.

Two weeks ago I wrote to Gov. Murkowski warning him against last-minute actions that will tie the hands of the next governor: "I strongly urge you to do nothing in the last days of your administration that would compromise the state's rightful access to the Point Thomson field. If you do, history will judge you very harshly."

Wally Hickel

former Governor of Alaska and Secretary of the Interior of the United States

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

The Entirety of Ben Stevens’ Reported Consulting Income From Fishing Interests

Ben’s Bribes Below The Booty Ben Delivered
At Sea Processors Association 2002/2001 = $16,000
At Sea Processors Association 2003/2002 = $38,000
T = $54,000
Adak Fisheries 2001/2000 = $25,000
Adak Fisheries 2002/2001 = $15,000
Adak Fisheries 2003/2002 = $80,000
Adak Fisheries 2004/2003 = $120,000
Adak Fisheries 2005/2004 = $80,000
Adak Fisheries 2006/2005 = $50,000
Adak Fisheries 2006/2005 = $32,307
T = $402,307

Bering Sea Crab Effort Reduction Fund
2001/2000 = $42,500 T = $42,500

Glacier Fish Company 2003/2002 = $4,200
Glacier Fish Company 2004/2003 = $21,000
Glacier Fish Company 2005/2004 = $21,000
Glacier Fish Company 2006/2005 = $16,800
T = $63,000

Highland Light Fisheries, Inc. 2003/2002 = $4,200
Highland Light Fisheries, Inc. 2004/2003 = $25,200
Highland Light Fisheries, Inc. 2005/2004 = $25,200
T = $54,600

North Pacific Crab Association 2003/2002 = $44,000
North Pacific Crab Association 2004/2003 = $44,000
North Pacific Crab Association 2005/2004 = $42,000
North Pacific Crab Association 2006/2005 = $24,000
T = $154,000

NorQuest Seafoods, Inc. 2001/2000 = $12,500
NorQuest Seafoods, Inc. 2002/2001 = $25,000
T = $37,500

Yardarm Knot, Inc 2006/2005 = $33,600
T = $33,600

Unreported and thus far concealed from APOC.
Payments from Southeast Seiners Association.
Paid to Ben between November. 03 and August 05.
Estimated T = $100,000

Salmon Allocation Comparison - AFMB Awards
Firm Allocation for FY 2004 Allocation for FY 2005 Total to Date
Ocean Beauty Seafoods $1.048.908.46 $1,259,625.59 $2,308,534.05
Icicle Seafoods $774,260.76 $904,016.58 $1,578,277.34
Peter Pan Seafoods $737,284.09 $829.217.50 $1,566,501.59
Trident Seafoods Corporation $577,210.61 $781,080.43 $1,358,291.04
Bear & Wolf LLC $471.761.37 $530,344.02 $1 ,002,105.39
NorOuest Seafoods, Inc. $496,351.14 $366,103.49 $802.454.63
North Pacific Processors, Inc. $346.228.51 $359,040.74 $705,269.25
Kanaway, Inc. dba Ak General Seafoods $223,202.94 $344.515.90 $567.718.84
Kodiak Salmon Packers, Inc. $74,105.66 $135.141.89 $209,247.55 $224 9.11.35
Snopac Products. Inc. $102,682.58 $122.228.77
Yardarm Knot Fisheries. LLC $123,963.56 5103.574.75 5227,538.31
Inlet Fish Producers. Inc. $65,834.84 $8I,585.24 $147,420.08
E.C. Phillips & Son, Inc. $63,649.95 $77,559.30 $141.209.25
Leader Creek Fisheries, LLC $54,648.00 $70,693.79 $125,341.79
Great Pacific Seafoods. Inc. $96,043.75 $63,507_00 $I59,550.75
Seafood Producers Cooperative $48,024.36 561,514.84 $109,539.20
Western Alaska Fisheries, Inc. $48,889.51 559,337.11 $108,226.62 $117,124.58
Copper River Fine Seafoods $65,692.49 $51,432.09
Nautilus Foods $44.628.00 $44,628.00 $70,931.57 $53,344.75
Snug Harbor Seafoods. Inc. $34,245.97 $36,685.60
Icy Strait Seafoods, Inc. $18,674.70 $34.670.05
Baywatch Seafoods. LLC $24,678.48 $28.249.17 $52,927.65
Coffee Point Seafood's $25,793.66 $25,793.66
Pacific Star Seafoods /Fishhawk, Inc. $19.686.84 $23,954.12 $43,640.96
Salamatof Seatoods, Inc. $25,514.75 $22,448.13 $47.962.88
Alaska Peninsula Fishermans Coop $13,552.47 $22,142.52 $35.694.99
Island Fish Co, LLC dba Island Seafoods $21,575.87 $21.575.87 $18.179.59
Sea Level Seafoods $18.179.59
R&J Seafood $12,899.00 $13;117.95 $
Alaska Salmon Purchasers, Inc. $9,773.00 $9.203.75 $18,976.75 $6,390.19
TKO Limited dba Signature Seafoods, Inc. $6.390.19
Deep Creek Custom Packing Inc $10,751 .56 $6.352.33 $17,103.89
Kwikpak Fisheries LLC $6,410.00 $5,178.86 $11,588.86
Grand Hale Marine Products Co Ltd.- $4,480.41 $4,017.25 $8,497.66
Boreal Fisheries. Inc. $2,314.96 $2.314.96
Prime Select Seafoods $3,279.10 $2,190.94 $5.470.04
Interior Alaska Fish Processors. Inc. $1,528.00 $1.528.00
Star Shadow Fisheries $1.528.00 $1.528.00
William Crump $980.00 $980.00
Maserculiq Fish Processors, Inc. $891.23 $891.23
Wind and Tide, Inc. $704.00 $704.00
Tim Berg's Alaskan Fishing Advent,ires $635.76 $635.76
Coastal Cold Storage, Inc. $519.00 $519.00
Wild By Nature LLC dba Wild Salmon Maxcy Fishing Company $441.00 $441.00
F/V Ilona-B $381.00 $381.00
Thorne Fisheries $379.00 $379.00
Tonka Seafoods, Inc. $338.00 $338.00
Kodiak Smoking & Processing $275.00 $275.00
F/V Willie Lee II $273.00 $273.00
FA/ Kaleva $254.00 $254.00
FlV Sea Comber $228.00 $228.00
FiV Myriad I Myriad Ent $190.00 $190.00
FIV Triad i Chris Chris Fisheries $181.00 $181.00
Horst's Seafood $170.00 $170.00
Smoky Bay Fisheries $152.00 $152.00
Alaska Flyin Fish Company $149.00 $149.00
Arctic Circle Seafood $76.00 $76.00
Alaska Wild Salmon Co I FA/ Dutch Master $71.00 $71.00
Seadance Seafoods $57.00 $57.00
Great Ruby Fish Company $55.00 $55.00
Pacman Fisheries I Bristol Gold -=-Ternium Sockeye Salmon $55.00 $55.00
Gateway Seafood and Smokehouse $43.00 $43.00
Bell's Seafood $38.00 $38.00
Lofoten Fish Company $36.00 $36.00
Pacific Pleasures $35.00 $35.00
Cross Sound Seafoods $35.00 $35.00
Wayne R. Beeson $18.00 $18.00
A&J Fisheries $11.00 $11.00
Totals $5,658,043.85 $6,482,983.99 $12,141,027.84

Salmon Allocation Comparison - AFMB Awards
Ben’s Bribes In A Nutshell.
Of the $12,141,027 that was as allocated to Ben’s friends that fish for Salmon, let me show you where three fourths of it went and what Ben got for it. To see for yourself, go to http://www.alaskafisheriesboard.org/, and click on “Allocations.”

See the names highlighted in blue: Ocean Beauty, Icicle, Peter Pan, Trident, NorQuest, North Pacific Processors, Western Alaska, Snopac, and Yardarm Knot. Collectively they received $9,040,000. These companies are also in the crabbing industry. Together, they make up the funding foundation for the 9-member North Pacific Crab Association. While Ben paid them $9,040,000 through the Alaska Fisheries Marketing Board to market Salmon, and they paid Ben $154,000 through the North Pacific Crab Association.

The Bering Sea Crab effort reduction fund that paid Ben $42,500, in 2000, (See his APOC report.) is for the most part, the same group now known as the North Pacific Crab Association, highlighted in blue in the left column of the attached Salmon Allocation Comparison chart of the AFMB Awards

At Sea Processors is a lobbying organization funded by major factory trawler owner-processors including Trident Seafoods. At Sea paid Ben’s Business partner, Trevor McCabe, to be its executive director until he resigned in late-2003. Trevor is also helping dish out the money to Ben’s friends as the vice chair of Alaska Fisheries Marketing Board. At Sea has paid Ben Stevens a total of $54,000. We have no knowledge of how much they paid Trevor McCabe as a manager. Glacier Fish Company, a member of At Sea also paid Ben Stevens an additional $63,000.

Through AFMB, Ben also awarded the “Genuine Alaska Pollock Producers” another $3,000,000, through the “AFMB Grants Program” (Go to website and click on “allocations” then “appropriations”) The “Genuine Alaska Pollock Producers” another group formed and dominated by the same above named companies. When added to the $9,040,000 for “salmon allocations” to friends of AFMB Chairman Ben Stevens and Vice Chair Trevor McCabe, the additional $3,000,000 brings the total to $12,040,000 we can count. Who knows what else we would find if the Attorney General and the Alaska Public Offices weren’t sandbagging this investigation.

In addition, it was Icicle Seafoods who in December of 2001, bought 50% of Adak Fisheries LLC and provided the necessary injection of capital Adak Fisheries LLC required to bring its overdue lease payments to the Aleut Enterprise Corp current. Six months later, it was Icicle Seafoods who also signed the now infamous “secret contract” granting Ben Stevens his second “secret option” to purchase a 25% interest in Adak Fisheries LLC, for a nominal Fee. (See Exhibit G & H) Note that his first secret option agreement was granted in 2000. (See Exhibit I).

Icicle Seafoods simultaneously provided the capital that enabled Adak Fisheries to increase Ben Stevens’ “consulting fees” from $15,000 per year to $80,000 the next year, $120,000 the year after that, and $80,000 the following year. (See Exhibit G, H, and Ben Stevens Disclosure).

Effectively, at the same time that Icicle Seafoods was shoving $280,000 into Ben Stevens pocket through Adak Fisheries consulting income, Ben was shoving $1,678,000 into Icicle Seafoods other pocket, through the Alaska Fisheries Marketing Board salmon marketing grants program.

There are terms for such acts: Money laundering, and bribery. Both are felonies - under state and federal law.

In addition to the above, NorQuest, (owned by Trident since April 2004), paid Ben $37,500. (See Ben’s 2001 & 2002 Disclosure.) Ben rewarded NorQuest handily (or maybe Trident,) with $862,454 from the Alaska Fisheries Marketing Board. (See the $862,454 highlighted in yellow)

Ben began paying Alaska Fisheries Marketing Board money to Yardarm Knot in 2004 and Yardarm Knot (and related company Highland Light) began handing Ben consulting fees for the first time in 2005. Ben paid Yardarm $227,538 in AFMB funds and Yardarm has paid Ben $33,600. An additional $54,000 was paid to Ben through Highland Light Fisheries, which is a subsidiary of Yardarm Knot Inc. (See Yardarm Knot’s $227,538 grant highlighted in yellow)

Ben’s unreported income from the Southeast Seiners Association (SEAS): The Southeast Seiners are fast learners. When they saw how things were shaping up for the founders of the Bering Sea Crab Effort Reduction Fund followed by the North Pacific Crab Association, the Southeast Seiners agreed to begin paying pay Ben $5,000 per month and promised him a 1% commission on what he could get.

(Paying on commission is a violation of federal lobbying law.)
Southeast Seiners payments to Ben began in 2003, and continued through most of 2005. We can only guess the amount because Ben has never reported this income to The Alaska Public Office Commission, (APOC), and we do not know the exact number of months that Ben was paid. We estimate payments to Ben to be in excess of $100,000.

When $50,000,000 appeared in a draft of the federal budget that had been passed out of the US Senate’s Appropriations Committee, the Southeast Seiners met to discuss how they were going to pay Ben the $500,000 commission they expected to owe him for this vessel buyback guarantee fund (a federal Fleet Capacity Reduction Program). Southeast Seiners’ management obviously had some concerns about the appearance, ethics, and legality of what they were doing at there November 13, 2004 meeting; they were openly discussing how to keep their payments to Ben “Off the Books.” Their concerns are obviously shared by Ben Stevens as to this day, has concealed these reportable payments from the Seiners’ association from the eyes of the Alaska Political Office Commission. Three corroborating Southeast Seiner member affidavits, attesting to Bens payments, are available on request. Call Ray Metcalfe 907 344-3414.

Who are they?

Alyeska Seafoods Inc., Seattle [Wards Cove/Marubeni/Maruha]
Icicle Seafoods Inc., Seattle [owned by SE AK investors]
NorQuest Seafoods, Seattle [Trident owned as of 2005]
Peter Pan Seafoods Inc., Seattle [Nichiro of Japan 100%]
Royal Aleutian Seafoods Inc., Seattle [recently bought by UniSea, owned by NISSUI]
Snopac Products Inc., Seattle [Korean investment]
Trident Seafoods Corp., Seattle [owned by US partners, Chuck Bundrant, Kaare Ness, etc.]
UniSea Inc., Redmond [owned by NISSUI - Nippon Suisan of Japan 100%]
Westward Seafoods Inc., Seattle [owned by Maruha 100%, formerly known as Taiyo
Yardarm Knot Fisheries LLC, Seattle. An Alan Chaffee company, also owners of Highland Light trawler.

FIRM FY 2004 FY 2005 TOTAL:
Ocean Beauty Seafoods $1,048,908.46 $1,259,625.59 $2,308,534.05
Icicle Seafoods $774,260.76 $904,016.58 $1,678,277.34
Peter Pan Seafoods $737,284.09 $829,217.50 $1,566,501.59
Trident Seafoods Corporation $577,210.61 $781,080.43 $1,358,291.04
NorQuest Seafoods, Inc. $496,351.14 $366,103.49 $862,454.63
North Pacific Processors, Inc. $346,228.51 $359,040.74 $705,269.25
Snopac Products, Inc. $102,682.58 $122,228.77 $224,911.35
Yardarm Knot Fisheries, LLC $123,963.56 $103,574.75 $227,538.31
Western Alaska Fisheries, Inc. $48,889.51 $59,337.11 $108,226.62
TOTALS: $4,255,779.22 $4,784,224.96 $9,040,004.18

Most of the above named crab processors headquartered in Washington State or Japan:
Genuine Alaska Pollock Producers (GAPP), which shows up in a different category of Fish Marketing Board handouts, also got $1,000,000 for FY 2003, $1,000,000 for FY 2004 and $1,000,000 for FY 2005, for a total of $3,000,000. It was given to them from that portion of the $29 Million the Alaska Fish Marketing Board (AFMB) sat aside specifically for “Grants.” GAPP includes all the above companies except Snopac; and also includes Alaska Ocean, Alyeska Seafoods, American Seafoods, Starbound, and Highland Light (an entity owned by Yardarm Knot).

In total, Ben gave $12,040,004 to the people who paid him $923.507. This does not account for the over $700,000 he raked off the top of the funds he raised for the Special Olympics, which, to the best of our knowledge, came mostly from the above named recipients of his gifts. However, unfortunately, we do not know because we do not have the power of subpoena and the Attorney General refuses to investigate. The Attorney General has told us “all you have is hearsay” and has refused to return calls to witnesses we have provided and witnesses who have called him, who claim to have knowledge of money laundering, kickbacks and Bribery.

Copies of three affidavits, affirming that Ben continues to conceal income from APOC, income that he received from Southeast Seiners Association between November 03, and August 05, are either attached, or available on request.