Joe Miller is fond of private security.
In the Spring of 2008, Joe Miller showed up wearing Eric Estrada circa 1984 mirrored sunglasses, with security guards in a staged coup d'état of the leadership of the Alaska Republican Party. He lost. Randy Ruedrich still stands supreme as the party Chair, and now supports the man who once tried to oust him.
Fast forward to July 4, 2010 -- US Senate candidate Joe Miller's supporters marched with assault rifles and campaign signs.
The Alaska Dispatch has been doggedly pursuing a story on why Joe Miller lost his job several months after the attempted takeover encouraged by then-governor Sarah Palin. All indicators point toward Miller using the computer resources of his employer, the Fairbanks North Star Borough, to rig some sort of vote, and then clearing out the cache to conceal that fact.
On Sunday, Joe Miller, candidate for US Senate, held a town hall meeting at a middle school in Anchorage. When asked about illegal immigration, Miller offered up: Build a wall! "If the East Germans could do it, so can we!"
Really? The Stasi? I know Palin said we could see Russia from Alaska, but East Germany is pushing it.
Tony Hopfinger, editor at the Alaska Dispatch and host of a US Senate debate scheduled for Monday evening, followed Joe Miller into the hallway after the debate to ask additional questions. At a press conference last week, Miller announced he would no longer be taking questions about his past, but has continued advertising his past accomplishments; military combat service, Yale Law School, federal magistrate, etc.
According to Hopfinger:
1. Hopfinger had been trying to ask Miller questions when two or three guards told him to leave or risk being charged with trespassing.
2. When Hopfinger continued to try to ask questions, one of the guards put the reporter in an arm-bar and then handcuffed him.
3. Hopfinger was released after police arrived.
4. The reporter was on public property where a public event was being held at the time of the incident.
5. Miller has been adamant about his desire to avoid talking to the Alaska media, but no one in the working press in Alaska has ever before seen a candidate go to this length to avoid questions.
It is bizarre enough to have a reporter "arrested" by private security, but those of us who drive past The Drop Zone, the business behind Miller's security, every day aren't surprised by their over-reach or connection to Joe Miller.
The only thing more extreme than the weather and wildlife in Alaska is the politics. The Drop Zone was a sponsor of Palin apologist and former radio host, Eddie Burke. The DZ bragged to patrons about their security squad being littered with former Blackwater operatives. Not disclosing full names and a preference for cash transactions were commonplace. A poster of President Obama as the Joker hangs in their front window.Part of being a 2nd Amendment Progressive in Alaska is having friends who are gun nuts. Several have recalled "Bill" at the Drop Zone boasting about his partners' participation in rendition and black ops overseas. He would show off the 50 caliber sniper rifle worth at least $80,000. No one I know would ask what it was worth. It doesn't take a sniper rifle to put a moose in your freezer.
"Bill", identified in news accounts of this story, is William Fulton. He is the owner of the Drop Zone. Bill was photographed in front of the Alaska 9/11 Glenn Beck-Sarah Palin rally after accosting and pointing a finger at a protester while shouting in her face, "Socialist!" The woman's sign said, "Don't be stupid Alaskans, Don't Vote Joe Miller, We Deserve Better...", and she held her own against the verbal onslaught. (see picture below)
Bill loves Glenn Beck and was heard saying, "Glenn talks to the crazies," who are his best customers.
Extremists aren't rare in Alaska. Through Todd Palin, the nation became aware of the Alaska secessionist group known as the Alaska Independence Party. Norm Olson, who was ousted from the Michigan Militia for being too radical, set up camp in Nikiski and started the Alaska Militia.
I think Scott McAdams, the Democratic candidate on the ticket opposing Joe Miller, put it best: "@JoeWMiller - in case you were unaware, the Constitution also applies to reporters."
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