MOLE FROM ‘SAVE ANCHORAGE’ IS SLIPPING INTEL TO CANDIDATE DUNBAR
“At the same time that Anchorage’s fringe right-wing groups have been organizing, the city’s Democratic Party has been falling apart,” wrote The Appeal, an online newspaper in San Francisco, which has taken a sudden interest in the mayor’s race in Anchorage. It’s so worried that the Democratic Party is falling apart, that the Bay Area news organization has jumped in to save candidate Forrest Dunbar.
This is how the narrative is shaped: Leftwing candidates reach out to leftwing writers to give them an assist with the voting public, getting them to damage their opponents. In this case, it appears that “Save Anchorage” is mayoral candidate Forrest Dunbar’s opponent. He is trying to tie candidate Dave Bronson to the group, which has someone funneling information out to Dunbar.
It’s possible that his deeps association with the Anchorage Press and Blue Alaskan are not helping Assemblyman Dunbar enough. Now he’s had to get San Francisco, the home of former Mayor Ethan Berkowitz, to lend a hand.
It would not be the first time that Dunbar sought to damage the 8,000 members of the Save Anchorage group, which is comprised of a lot of normal moms and a few wild-eyed people who are mad at city government. Dunbar recently mentioned Save Anchorage and Must Read Alaska as his enemies in a fundraising letter to all Anchorage super-voters.
A reporter for The Appeal in San Francisco interviewed Dunbar, and characterized him as worried about “Save Anchorage,” which organized last year after a series of radical decisions to shut down the city’s businesses, purchase hotels for vagrants, and ban a practice called “conversion therapy.” Save Anchorage was a constant presence at protests during the summer, fall, and winter at Assembly meetings, as members tried to save the city’s economy.
The Appeal is funded in part by the wife of Mark Zuckerberg, who is the CEO of Facebook.
The Appeal has been reaching out to readers in Anchorage through a public relations wire service to try to get them to read the story, in which they characterize Save Anchorage as the real radicals. The story, appearing as the lead item in the current edition of The Appeal, refers to Anchorage Daily News, the Anchorage Press, and Alaska Public Media stories as its sources its summary of the political environment in Anchorage. It is a textbook case of parachute journalism.
“On March 21, 2020, the city began using its sports arena and other large venues as temporary shelters. Over the summer, the city proposed using $22.5 million in federal CARES Act funds to buy four properties to house homeless people. Public health advocates and progressives applauded the decisions, but for a set of right-wing Anchorage residents, the decisions amounted to a rallying cry,” the news organization wrote. It then went on to say the group threatened violence and that a Facebook user named James Mileur “stormed the U.S. Capitol” on Jan. 6.
The Appeal then revealed the existence of a mole in Save Anchorage: “At least 8,000 people have joined the group, which has since been made private. But one person has ensured that its message stays in the public discourse.”
In addition to Zuckerberg money, The Appeal is funded by several radical left-wing nonprofit organizations. With a staff of dozens, it is essentially an unregistered field organizing team that appears to be putting the target on Save Anchorage as the Anchorage mayoral race heats up.
The story also swiped at mayoral candidates Dave Bronson and Mike Robbins. The author paints Bronson as being anti-homeless, while painting Robbins as someone associated with a dating website called Romanian American Matrimonial Introduction Services, and also a supporter of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016.
Suzanne Downing is the publisher of Must Read Alaska. She is a former business owner, longtime journalist, and political adviser who worked for Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida and Gov. Sean Parnell of Alaska. Raised in Juneau, Alaska and based somewhere in Alaska, she was the editor of the Juneau Empire and now writes on current events and politics.