NOTE: "Denali" was the name assigned to Gov. Sarah Palin by the United States Secret Service during the 2008 campaign. Her husband's code name, per Secret Service, was "Driller."
As tourist season winds down in Alaska, so does the sightseeing trip of America's busiest tourist. The President heads back to the beltway bubble after three days in the wondrous Last Frontier.
While here, he enjoyed spectacular autumn weather which he commemorated with many selfies on a stick. He danced, he held a fish, he hiked a glacier (thankfully not the Mendenhal Glacier, for that chunk of ice is, literally, the size of Rhode Island. Instead, he enjoyed one of the other 100,000 Alaskan glaciers). And, he renamed a mountain...our mountain...the tallest peak on the North America continent.
Unlike most tourists, the President heads home now with his enormous fleet of transport vehicles - ironically after plenty of finger pointing on this Global Warming tour. Astoundingly, with just this one trip, a bigger carbon footprint was created than what 33 cars combined would create in an entire year.
From his many entertaining Instagram pictures, it looks like he enjoyed his trip, thankfully! Hard not to in the ever-changing ebb and flow of God's Northern grandeur that has evolved with natural cyclic phenomenons, like tides rising and falling, glaciers advancing and receding, trees growing and dying in this energy-rich land that's been reshaping itself since the beginning of time.
Residents here are thankful when far-away decision makers who control the vast majority of Alaska's land and resources give us the time of day; hopefully his was an impacting trip. Here are a few things he missed, though:
The Hubbard Glacier…which is actually growing.
The thousands of men and women working in extreme conditions to produce safe, available, American oil in our energy industry where jobs suffer such negative impacts due to the Administration's anti-development mindset.
Five Chinese warships off our Alaska coast - right there in the Bering Sea this morning - a signal that growing Superpowers like China (and Russia, with its recent brazen claims to lands and waterways that a sleepy America should be claiming) are no longer respectful of America, nor intimidated.
The vast untapped natural resources trapped in the desolate ANWR region, locked up by Feds who ignore the will of the people of Alaska who support drilling.
Blocked, despite there being enough crude to produce more barrels per day than we import from Saudi Arabia, thus easing our dependence on unstable, unfriendly foreign sources of energy. Development creates jobs...it's the only real "stimulus package" the Feds should have engaged in. Drill, baby...eh, you know the rest.
The Commander in Chief wasn't able to make time to visit with Alaska's 22,000-plus active duty military personnel proudly fighting for our freedom. We'll thank the troops for you, sir.
Next time I hope the President can take a minute to visit groups like Franklin Graham's "Operation Heal our Patriots" near Bristol Bay; the faith-based charity working to heal scars inflicted in war.
Such a selfless group of leaders committed to addressing the 80-85% divorce rate among young returning vets, and the tragic veterans' suicide statistics.
The near empty oil pipeline, thanks to activists deceiving the Administration with domestic energy scare tactics that result in lost jobs, lost American energy, and greatly diminished national security. After Alaska was purchased from Russia, eventually becoming the 49th state, the deal was we'd be as self-sufficient as possible, and we'd do it by developing our God-given rich natural resources.
The Federal government has reneged on its end by blocking or disincentivizing oil, gas, and mineral developments not just on all government lands, but also on the precious but measly 2% of Alaska land that is privately owned.
A quick trip to our coast would have been worthwhile. Next time! Yes, uneducated media, you can actually see Russia from here. Thar' she is...
Maybe if he had looked across the way he'd finally notice the looming, growing, serious threat that is Vladimir Putin. What, do I have to keep an eye on him from my house?
...and see how the U.S.A. is getting its butt kicked in Arctic oil exploration, underwater resource flagging, and waterway grabs by the Russians and Chinese as they race to claim another 13% of the world's undiscovered oil here, while the Administration sits on its thumbs.
Or golfs. Or wipes servers. Or takes selfies. Or whatever they do lately.
Maybe, had our President seen this winter supply of organic protein, he'd stop pretending the very real threats to our national security and way of life are not imaginary, security threats including the resource grab underway, underfoot, and underwater.
Mr. President, I'm glad you loved Alaska...these residents were excited to see you…that's the Alaskan spirit!
To meet even more residents, come back during our beautiful, breathtaking winter.
And with the Federal flying ban finally lifted as Air Force One departs, we can fly out to moose territory to harvest ingredients for Alaskan Moose Chili - we'd share the bounty with you and the entourage...thank you for speaking so highly of the Last Frontier.
Denali served as Alaska's 9th Governor, the youngest and first woman governor of America's largest state. Prior to serving as Governor she was Mayor and Manager of the state's fastest growing community, then went on to regulate energy development as Chairman of Alaska's Oil & Gas Commission. Denali's husband, a Yupik Eskimo from Dillingham, is the four-time "Iron Dog" race champion, is a pilot, and worked for nearly two decades as an oil field production operator in Prudhoe Bay. The family owns and operates a commercial fishing business in Bristol Bay.