March 31, 2009

RMA 2.0: Rocky Mtn Blogs Radio Show #20

**Every Tuesday--next show March 31, 8:30 pm.



The Blog Talk Radio version of the Rocky Mountain Alliance. A weekly discussion about politics--national, state, and local--featuring RMA members bloggers led by featured host and producer Joshua Sharf, with rotating co-host duties from Ben DeGrow of Mount Virtus, Randy Ketner of Night Twister, and Michael Alcorn of Best Destiny.

March 31 lineup--Nancy Doty talks about a potential run for Secretary of State, and DU law professor Robert Hardaway on HB1299, the bill to replace the Electoral College with a National Popular Vote.

March 24 lineup--we review of the recent state GOP organizational meeting, where Dick Wadhams was reelected as state chair, and Leondray Gholston was elected vice chair after three rounds of voting with Boulder County GOP chair Scott Starin, and David K. Williams, co-founder of the Gadsden Society of Colorado.

Last week (all shows archived): March 17 lineup--State Senate Minority Leader Josh Penry was our first guest, followed by Nathan Chambers, candidate for Colorado Republican Party state vice chair.

Previous week: March 10 lineup--From 8:45 to 9:15, Colorado Republican Party Chair Dick Wadhams and at 9:30 Hassan Daioleslam.

March 3 lineup--two candidates for Fort Collins City Council, Aislinn Kottwitz (District 3) and Andrew Boucher (District 5), and Tom Stone, who is challenging Dick Wadhams for state party chairmanship.

Next week--TBD.


February 24 lineup--Evan Coyne Maloney of Indoctrinate U, whose film of the same name was shown at the inaugural Liberty on Film last Thursday, and Nadeem Esmail of the Fraser Institute, discussing the dangers of single-payer (socialized) medicine from first hand experience.

Indoctrinate U trailer:


Plus two special editions of RMA Radio--the Pork Roast/anti-stimulus rally edition from the steps of the state capitol, as well as extensive coverage of the Larimer County Lincoln Day dinner.

February 17 lineup--Denver-based political activist Chris Maj, also an affiliate of Ron Paul’s Campaign for Liberty, and a look back to today's anti-stimulus/pig roast rally at the state capitol.

February 10 lineup--State Rep. Cory Gardner (R-63), probable candidate in the CD-4 GOP primary, and Leondray Gholston, Republican activist and candidate for state GOP vice-chair.

February 3 lineup--Daveed Gartenstein-Ross from the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and Mike Saccone of the Grand Junction Sentinel.

January 27--Guests included elections expert Jan Tyler and State Sen. Greg Brophy.

January 20--Guests included Todd Shepherd, Independence Institute, and Mark Hillman, Colorado Republican National Committeeman.

January 13--State Rep. Ellen Roberts, R-Durango (HD 59) and State Senator Mike Kopp, SD 22, R-Littleton.

January 6--CU Regent Tom Lucero, chairman of the successful Amendment 54 campaign and a candidate for CD 4 in 2010.

December 30--RMA took a look back at a dismal year in their 2008 year-in-review.

December 23--Joshua and fellow commentators (including yours truly) hosted Jim Pfaff of Americans for Prosperity Foundation and Opinion Times. Pfaff discussed the AFP Colorado report "Keeping Colorado Competitive" and bridging the Christian/libertarian gap.

On December 16 we hosted State Rep. Kevin Lundberg (District 49), and discussed the Salazar appointment as the Secretary of the Interior in the Obama cabinet.

The December 12 edition featured Aurora City Councilman Ryan Frazier.

**Bookmark the new RMA Radio home page, with embedded player and calendar of upcoming shows and featured guests.

Stream the show live, or play/download the podcast at your convenience.

Listen to Rocky Mtn Blogs on internet talk radio

I'll update co-host and guest info for each episode as it becomes available. Stay tuned . . .

RMA's shows are archived--if you missed any of them, be sure to check out the archive page to stream or download, or scroll down this page a bit, for the embedded archive player.

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March 30, 2009

Colorado 2010 US Senate Race Update: Ryan Frazier's Ascent Part II


A new direction for the GOP?--Ryan Frazier speaks at the March 1 Gadsden Society "Rally for Freedom"

Yesterday, SP noted that Ryan Frazier had won the straw poll at the Douglas County Lincoln Day dinner.

What we didn't know was how big.

Then we received the numbers--this was more than a plurality--it was a clear majority of attendees:
171 votes cast in straw poll....

Frazier 102 = 59.6%
Caplis 34 = 19.9%
Beauprez 22 = 12.9%
Tidwell 4 = 2.3%
Buck 9 = 5.3%
Given that the average Lincoln Day dinner is populated by GOP faithful, including operatives and activists, and not fly-by-night grassroots supporters organized by the candidate him/herself**, and also given that Douglas County isn't exactly RINO territory, this informal poll says quite a bit. Frazier has the clear ability to draw broad-based support in a fairly conservative county that will be one of the keys to any GOP victories in the state. There are many counties that will play a part in the five state wide elections in 2010 (US Senate, Governor, Attorney General, Secretary of State, Treasurer), but how Douglas County goes, so goes . . .

Initial impressions for this race have yet to be firmly cemented, but GOP voters like what they see in Frazier--one among the next generation of GOP leadership. As mentioned yesterday the hard part will come in spreading that visibility and familiarity state wide, establishing solid policy chops, and raising the campaign dollars necessary to win.

Frazier's speech from Saturday's Lincoln Day dinner:





Previous Frazier-blogging.

**an earlier version alluded to Ron Paul's supporters, not to reflect on RP himself or his message, just the tactics of some supporters who occasionally "gamed" online or straw polls

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March 29, 2009

Colorado 2010 US Senate Race Update: Ryan Frazier's Ascent

**Update--Buzz from Douglas County Lincoln Day dinner indicates that Frazier won the night's straw poll--exact numbers to follow this evening.

From Chris Cillizza's "The Fix" at the Washington Post:
9. Colorado (D): Appointed Sen. Michael Bennet has made a solid debut so far although his wishy-washiness on the Employee Free Choice Act has turned him into something of public punching bag on the right and the left. Bennet, a virtual unknown before he was named to replace Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, is clearly vulnerable in 2010. But, there doesn't appear to be a serious primary challenge in the offing (does former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff really want to risk his "rising star" status on a race against a sitting senator?) and the Republican field has been slow to take shape. The most likely GOP candidate seems to be former Rep. Bob Beauprez but his disastrous 2006 run for governor raises questions about his political strength. Some within the GOP are excited about the possible candidacy of Ryan Frazier, a 31-year old African American member of the Aurora City Council. (Previous ranking: 10)
The seat could quickly become a real toss-up as Frazier's visibility within the party increases. GOP grassroots activists, many of whom supported Leondray Gholston's successful vice chair candidacy at the state level (Gholston served as Frazier's reelection campaign manager), have identified Frazier as a strong contender for the GOP's 2010 U.S. Senate nomination. They believe that Frazier carries none of the negatives of the other potential candidates whose names have been bandied about for the seat, and argue that he has a greater potential for reestablishing and mobilizing a "big tent" for conservatives/GOP/libertarians in the state. His main task will be in establishing brand awareness across Colorado in the coming months, along with building a sufficient campaign war chest to tackle a contested primary and Sen. Bennet in 2010.

SP has been tracking Frazier's potential candidacy for months.

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March 26, 2009

Colorado Blizzard 2009 Photos And Timelapse Video

Wheat Ridge received at least 15.1" from Thursday's storm, producing these drifts by the time I returned home after a snow day(!) was declared:





Around the 2:00 mark of the following timelapse shot from my office this morning, the blizzard really kicked in:

video

I turned the camera to catch the intersection of 14th and Larimer--the snow was collecting so quickly, that the tire tracks from each successive turn of traffic disappeared:

video

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Leadership Program Of The Rockies Retreat: Defending Liberty Through Action

"Pro-liberty, pro-freedom revolution"--LPR's 2009 retreat

"Courage, moral fortitude, and passion around liberty" was the central message of the Leadership Program of the Rockies' annual retreat held March 6-7 at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs. Former U.S. Rep. and current LPR Board Chairman Bob Schaffer emphatically charged the attendees to reject the GOP inferiority complex and effectively advocate on behalf of the core American philosophies of liberty and freedom.

The retreat proved far more than what might be considered similar conferences held in DC--where elbow-rubbing with conservative/libertarian celebrities and self-congratulatory back-patting from attendees cheering their own enlightened perspectives are the norm--LPR is a call to action. The invited guest speakers repeatedly admonished the crowd to perform the duties of free people in the defense of liberty. Boiled into a bumpersticker quote it amounted to this--"what have you done today for liberty?" Grousing about Democrat victories and creeping socialism, especially among like-minded compatriots, achieves nothing. Principled opposition with substance will ultimately win the argument of the day, not the sort of frothing rage that characterized the Left for the better part of the last decade.

The following is a photo essay of the event--not a recapitulation of the speakers themselves (you should attend next year's event, or better yet, get in the program yourself!), but key points from the speakers, packed with links to relevant blog posts, author's books, and other materials discussed at the retreat.

Click to enlarge:


Bob Schaffer, former U.S. Representative, current Chair of the Colorado's Board of Education, and current LPR Board Chairman--exhorted retreat attendees to act with "courage, moral fortitude, and passion around liberty."


Michelle Malkin, MichelleMalkin.com and HotAir.com--urged the less tech-savvy to embrace, not fear, online activism and new media use, noting that conservatives need to continue engaging politically while "withdrawing [their] checkbooks."


Princella Smith--"invite, engage, and promote, on principle," and establish tasks to be accomplished, beginning at the local level.


Ross Kaminsky, Rossputin.com, discusses "going Galt."


Philip Howard, author of "Life Without Lawyers"--argues for the need to have a basic shift in legal philosophy and a return to a responsibility that underlies freedom, that Americans should be "free to act, with accountability"; calls for judges to "redraw boundaries on authority" and cease using the power of the state to take freedom from others.


Former U.S. Rep Bob Beauprez, author of "A Return to Values: A Conservative Looks at His Party"--asked attendees to not to reexamine their principles, but ways to effectively advocate them in the public sphere, and discussed "education, taxation, litigation, and regulation" among other topics.


Mike Rosen, radio talk show host for 850 KOA, put it simply--conservatives and libertarians need to "dig deeper into their pockets to beat" the Colorado Model, with fundraising and organization; that pragmatism (not overweening optimism) should pervade any sense of a pendulum swing back from extreme liberalism; and finally, to win the argument one must harness rage, and refute Democrat overreach with substance and principles.


Dr. Yaron Brook, President of the Ayn Rand Institute--advocated a moral defense of laissez-faire capitalism, rejected the premise that the current crisis is a product of capitalism (the real culprit is government intervention); explained that rational self-interest has been demonized, requiring capitalists to educate others.


Philip Howard discusses law with Colorado Attorney General John Suthers before dinner.


U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman talks to the crowd during Friday's keynote dinner.


Current LPR Class of 2009 members--Jenny Lang, David K. Williams, and Kate Melvin, and Rachel Boxer of FaceTheState.com.


Keynote speaker William Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard, expressed guarded optimism and suggested a retreat from hasty decisions, positing a call for "political entrepreneurship" and the flowering of intra-party debate.


William Kristol and Matt Dempsey, Communications Director for Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), Republican Leadership Program graduate (LPR's predecessor, Class of 2000), and editor for Sen. Inhofe's EPW blog (Environment and Public Works committee), prepare to exchange business cards.


Aurora City Councilman Ryan Frazier, RLP Class of 2002, and potential candidate for U.S. Senate in 2010.


One of the Broadmoor's more enchanting promenades.


Maurice McTigue, a prominent New Zealand politician, reminded the crowd that whether in power or biding time on the sidelines, leaders must have courage to do the right thing; government should be seen as a referee, not a player, and certainly not accorded responsibilities and power that threaten wealth creation; that action requires challenging legislation and policy at all levels and at all times (ask why? what is the outcome? public benefit? efficacy? cost benefit?).


Brigitte Gabriel, author of "They Must Be Stopped: Why We Must Defeat Radical Islam and How We Can Do It"--roused the crowd with a defense of Western culture, describing her own personal experience with radical jihad, honored current and former members of our armed forces, and detailed the threat posed by those who loathe our freedoms (let alone despise capitalism) through insecure borders.


Bob Schaffer holds up the stuffed turkey that used to hang on the wall of his office during his tenure in Congress, returned to him by the soon-retiring John Shadegg (R-AZ).


Kate O'Beirne, Washington editor of National Review, introduces Jonah Goldberg, editor-at-large of National Review Online.


Goldberg, the author of "Liberal Fascism: The Secret History of the American Left, From Mussolini to the Politics of Meaning"--defended his damning critique of the left as the true originators, perpetrators, and perpetuators of fascism and highlighted the politics of personal destruction employed by them; brought the retreat to a hilarious close that focused on the intellectual insecurities of the left, the need for principled opposition, and a final call to action echoing all of the previous speakers.


Goldberg enthusiastically signed copies of his book, a New York Times #1 bestseller.


The sky was overcast above the Broadmoor, but the forecast inside wasn't bleak, just as long as LPR members and guests went back home, armed with additional intellectual ammunition and a renewed sense of principled purpose and substantive objectives.

Those on the ground at the LPR retreat reflected on what the program means to them and how the retreat has impacted their own political activism:

•"During this time of unprecedented trends toward both economic fascism and socialism in our nation, the inspiration and intellectual ammunition provided by the Leadership Program of the Rockies is invaluable for those of us fighting daily for liberty and, with luck, will encourage others to join the fight. The value of knowing "you are not alone" in trying to protect the values on which this country was founded can not be overestimated, and for that I'm especially appreciative of LPR"--Ross Kaminsky, prominent Colorado blogger of Rossputin.com, LPR Class of 2005

•"LPR has been a great place to network and meet like-minded individuals . . . The LPR retreat was fantastic! Where else are you going to go to hear highly esteemed individuals explain how democracy goes against individual rights??!"--Amanda J. Teresi, co-founder of Liberty on the Rocks, LPR Class of 2009

•"The retreat is an inspirational event. The speakers help improve one's ability to demonstrate how capitalism is the only moral system of human interaction. I'll be back"--David K. Williams, Jr., co-founder of the Gadsden Society, LPR Class of 2009

•“This LPR retreat attracted phenomenal speakers. Jonah Goldberg was a riot – at lunch it was time to open the brain tanks because he was dispensing premium, 91-octane knowledge”--Wesley Dickinson, co-founder of People's Press Collective, LPR Class of 2007

•"LPR is the premiere place for Colorado's future leaders to learn the value of liberty and for Colorado's lovers of liberty to learn to be effective leaders. If you get the opportunity to join LPR, to meet like-minded leaders, and to understand more deeply the principles that make this nation great, don't pass it up"--Ben DeGrow, Independence Institute education policy analyst and blogger at Mount Virtus, LPR Class of 2006

•"As an activist and first-time Retreat attendee who has been interested in the Leadership Program of the Rockies for some time, I was very impressed with the caliber of speakers and the number of civic and intellectual leaders in attendence. Excellent experience, and I am excited to become more involved in the program!"--Brett Moore, President of Denver Metro Young Republicans

•"When I was a State Patrol Major Gov. Owens appointed me to Chair the Homeland Security Board for the Metro Denver area in 2002 so I am aware of the terrorist issues facing America today. But Brigitte Gabriel's presentation brought firsthand knowledge of the dangers the World is facing; she brought tears to my eyes and is the best speaker I have ever heard! I encourage everyone to check out her website: www.actforamerica.org. Get educated, understand the threats we face, get involved and protect America's future"--Lora Thomas, Retired Major Colorado State Patrol, LPR Class of 2008

•"The Leadership Program of the Rockies annual retreat at the Broadmoor this year was a much-needed "shot in the arm" to re-energize, reinvigorate, and re-arm (rhetorically) the liberty-loving coalition.

The panelists and presentations were informative, engaging, even rousing - I dare you to experience Yaron Brooks, Brigitte Gabriel, and Jonah Goldberg and not get motivated. If they didn't succeed in lighting your fire, your log is wet.

However, I think that Bob Schaffer's opening remarks really encapsulated the spirit of the event. After remarking on the rapid growth of the government role in so many areas and noting that freedom and market principles are under relentless attack, Bob called for “an army of people devoted to the cause of liberty” – people of courage, moral fortitude and armed with the knowledge and understanding of how things work, and the ability to engage in public debate – and win!

Now – in times that once again “try men’s souls” – we need to create the same revolutionary sense as 1776.

Bob asked, "How did the colonists begin to organize and exchange ideas?" They formed clandestine groups – such as the “Sons of Liberty”, meeting in pubs and private houses, forming “Committees of Correspondence” to spread ideas and organize people from the ground up.

We, the people are recapturing that revolutionary spirit – forming grassroots groups, meeting in pubs (“Liberty on the Rocks”) and “Committees of Correspondence” to spread the idea of freedom & liberty (“Peoples Press Collective”, E-mail chains).

The Leadership Program of the Rockies Annual Retreat is a kind of constitutional convention of the freedom movement, the attendees the core of the "Army of Freedom" that are mobilizing as Leaders in Action to rise up in Defense of Capitalism, individual rights and the principles of freedom. Go LPR!"--Matthew Arnold, LPR 2008 Class President

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March 25, 2009

An Evening With Barack Obama… and the DNC

Your humble correspondent had the unexpected chance to attend a DNC/Organizing for America fundraiser at the Warner Theatre in Washington, DC, headlined by none other than the President. The ticket was a gift from a new, lavishly generous friend who also happens to be a big donor to the DNC. Don’t worry, no SP or other hard-earned conservative dollars were sacrificed on the Democratic altar in the name of journalism!



What recession? The Democratic Party mavens were out in force buying Juicy Couture, Zac Posen and other designer label clothing and accessories, all emblazoned with Obama’s name, image and slogans.

For those of you who think that the Dems are cranky heathens who hate America, you’ll be pleased to learn that not only did the event open with hymns from Howard University’s gospel choir, but we were also treated to the Star-Spangled Banner—also sung by Howard U.—and John Phillip Sousa marches at the end. Alas, there is where the similarities end between a similar conservative event.

First up was Deputy National Director of Organizing for America (OFA), Jeremy Bird. He spoke in pleasantries about how he met Mr. Obama when the erstwhile senator was a no-name candidate with long-shot chances at the nomination. He suggested that if we gave money to OFA, we would once again be the beneficiaries of a “real conversation again,” as in a national debate. As if this has been missing over the past indeterminate period? Your correspondent is mystified, since the Left has been plenty vocal in recent years.

Mr. Bird yielded to the legendary Tony Bennett, who performed a number of his famed swingy tunes. He also engaged in small talk between songs about Mrs. Obama and the time he saw her feeding the homeless. Although Bennett is a superstar, the crowd was clearly becoming restless to get on with the main event… the real superstar, in their eyes, of the evening.

Bennett’s performance finally yielded to a short intermission, where the now-obligatory TelePrompTers were set up. You will see them clearly in the photos. The speech was a scant 18 minutes long, but as we learned last night during the prime time press conference, Mr. Obama likes “to know what [he’s] talking about” before he speaks.

At long last, at 8:58 pm, DNC Chairman Tim Kaine took the podium to introduce the President. Former Gov. Kaine outlined his opinion that President Obama has “done more in 60 days than many presidents do in 60 months,” and proceeded to outline a number of Mr. Obama’s recent policy initiatives that have galled conservatives and some moderates. He spoke of Lily Ledbetter, Guantanamo, SCHIP, and let’s not forget that we “reversed an anti-science position” to boot. Translation: stem cell research will now be funded by taxpayer dollars.



Apologies for the brief video; your correspondent was justifiably unprepared. Trust me when I say that my attendance was truly unexpected.

Mr. Kaine notes that there are three functions of the DNC: 1) to be the political arm of the White House, as the President “needs to be a success” and the DNC will be sure that it happens; 2) to ensure party strength in 50 states, and 3) Organizing for America will be an arm of the DNC. Kaine opines that this is perhaps the most exciting part! Opinions vary, I suppose.

At 9:05 pm, Mr. Obama took the stage. Note that the event was slated to begin at 8:00 pm. Some could view this as the appropriate time in the program for his appearance. Others would view it as symptomatic of his pervasive tardiness. Here at SP, we believe in letting you be the judge on this one.



Mr. Obama’s speech largely consisted of throwing red meat to the base, as is customary in fundraisers for either party. Of course, he started off by commending the efforts of volunteers, without whom he would still be a community organizer in Chicago. It quickly became clear, however, that the evening’s remarks were mostly about shoring up support for his boondoggle budget and massive economic plans. Bright-faced volunteers, clipboards and petitions in hand, were canvassing the lines outside of people waiting to be inspected by the Secret Service. The objective is to show that 100,000 people agree with Mr. Obama on the economic issues. According to the president, people want to know “What will you do to give us a hand up, not a handout?” He joked about the process of finding an answer to this question, saying that in the news, “One day I’m a genius, one day I’m a bum.” Again, we at SP will let you decide!

The president mentioned some indicators that he thinks show “progress.” For example, “we measure recovery by how many Americans can bring home a paycheck to make ends meet.” He again hammered home that 95% of Americans will be receiving a tax cut soon. He also deftly took credit for home prices “stabilizing in some parts of the country,” attributing this to the actions that the administration has so far taken. Although our Constant Readers’ eyebrows might be raised, there was no disagreement in that room. Except, perhaps, for your correspondent.

Mr. Obama also discussed, as a measure of success, whether kids can go to college. According to him, “we’ve generated more lending in the last week than we have over the last four months.” Again, it is attributed to his plans and actions.



The item with which I had the most disagreement was his assertion that we need to build the economy on a strong foundation—and that “the budget I’ve submitted to Congress does that.” Stated another way, his “budget leads to economic prosperity.” He made his case for why we can’t afford “fiscal discipline” right now. Evidently, because the American people can’t choose to prioritize and pay one thing at a time, neither can the U.S. government. This argument is specious, if only because the government can and should scale back grandiose plans until we have the revenue to support them. The average American must certainly meet obligations, but it does not have to be an obligation for the U.S. government to load up its plate with new entitlement spending, social programs, colossal “down payments” and other new spending measures.

I digress. Mr. Obama also stated that we aren’t “gonna wait until we have $4-a-gallon gas to say that we don’t have an energy policy.” I hope that some SP readers can see the irony in this statement, given what we know of Mr. Obama’s ideas on energy policy. Additionally, critics of his billions in undefined health care expenditures “don’t understand” the human element that needs health insurance. I suppose that, regrettably, I must be counted among those that didn’t get the memo.

The president ended his remarks with the declaration that he won’t kick the problems down the road for another four or eight years—the cheers at the proposition of eight years were deafening—because we can’t wait. Sadly, there are a growing number of people who would indeed like to wait, preferably indefinitely, for Mr. Obama’s ideas to come to fruition.

An aside: the Baltimore Sun reports that although the DNC is the party in power, they report just $8.6 million on hand, with $7 million in debt, for February month-end. They raised a mere $3.2 million in February, with the GOP raising $5.1 million under the new leadership of Michael Steele. The GOP also reported a relatively staggering $24 million in the bank with no debt. Look for the fundraising wars to heat up as candidates declare for the 2010 election cycle.

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Denver Museum's Solar Panels, Touted As Part Of A "Green Economy" During Obama's Stimulus Tour, Won't Pay For Themselves For 110 Years

Todd Shepherd, the Independence Institute's investigative reporter and co-founder of CompleteColorado.com, has an outstanding followup to President Barack Obama's vaunted Denver visit in February to sign the "stimulus" package:
Before signing the $787 billion stimulus package into law on Feburary 17, 2009, President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden toured an array of solar panels on top of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. The photo-op allowed the President to once again extol the virtues of the coming “green” economy.
. . .
A 2008 article in the Denver Business Journal sheds further light on the subject. The article notes the total price of the solar array was $720,000. And Dave Noel, VP of operations and chief technology officer for the Museum, was quoted as saying, “We looked at first installing [the solar array] ourselves, and without any of the incentive programs, it was a 110-year payout.” Noel went on to say that the Museum did not purchase the solar array because it did not “make sense financially.”

Additionally, most solar panels have an expected life-span of 20 to 25 years.
The article really is worth your time--the obstinacy from the DMNS on transparency surrounding the solar array is really quite unsurprising.

Shocker.

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March 24, 2009

RMA 2.0: Rocky Mtn Blogs Radio Show #19

**Every Tuesday--next show March 24, 8:30 pm.



The Blog Talk Radio version of the Rocky Mountain Alliance. A weekly discussion about politics--national, state, and local--featuring RMA members bloggers led by featured host and producer Joshua Sharf, with rotating co-host duties from Ben DeGrow of Mount Virtus, Randy Ketner of Night Twister, and Michael Alcorn of Best Destiny.

March 24 lineup--we review of the recent state GOP organizational meeting, where Dick Wadhams was reelected as state chair, and Leondray Gholston was elected vice chair after three rounds of voting with Boulder County GOP chair Scott Starin, and David K. Williams, co-founder of the Gadsden Society of Colorado.

Last week (all shows archived): March 17 lineup--State Senate Minority Leader Josh Penry was our first guest, followed by Nathan Chambers, candidate for Colorado Republican Party state vice chair.

Previous week: March 10 lineup--From 8:45 to 9:15, Colorado Republican Party Chair Dick Wadhams and at 9:30 Hassan Daioleslam.

March 3 lineup--two candidates for Fort Collins City Council, Aislinn Kottwitz (District 3) and Andrew Boucher (District 5), and Tom Stone, who is challenging Dick Wadhams for state party chairmanship.

Next week--TBD.


February 24 lineup--Evan Coyne Maloney of Indoctrinate U, whose film of the same name was shown at the inaugural Liberty on Film last Thursday, and Nadeem Esmail of the Fraser Institute, discussing the dangers of single-payer (socialized) medicine from first hand experience.

Indoctrinate U trailer:


Plus two special editions of RMA Radio--the Pork Roast/anti-stimulus rally edition from the steps of the state capitol, as well as extensive coverage of the Larimer County Lincoln Day dinner.

February 17 lineup--Denver-based political activist Chris Maj, also an affiliate of Ron Paul’s Campaign for Liberty, and a look back to today's anti-stimulus/pig roast rally at the state capitol.

February 10 lineup--State Rep. Cory Gardner (R-63), probable candidate in the CD-4 GOP primary, and Leondray Gholston, Republican activist and candidate for state GOP vice-chair.

February 3 lineup--Daveed Gartenstein-Ross from the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and Mike Saccone of the Grand Junction Sentinel.

January 27--Guests included elections expert Jan Tyler and State Sen. Greg Brophy.

January 20--Guests included Todd Shepherd, Independence Institute, and Mark Hillman, Colorado Republican National Committeeman.

January 13--State Rep. Ellen Roberts, R-Durango (HD 59) and State Senator Mike Kopp, SD 22, R-Littleton.

January 6--CU Regent Tom Lucero, chairman of the successful Amendment 54 campaign and a candidate for CD 4 in 2010.

December 30--RMA took a look back at a dismal year in their 2008 year-in-review.

December 23--Joshua and fellow commentators (including yours truly) hosted Jim Pfaff of Americans for Prosperity Foundation and Opinion Times. Pfaff discussed the AFP Colorado report "Keeping Colorado Competitive" and bridging the Christian/libertarian gap.

On December 16 we hosted State Rep. Kevin Lundberg (District 49), and discussed the Salazar appointment as the Secretary of the Interior in the Obama cabinet.

The December 12 edition featured Aurora City Councilman Ryan Frazier.

**Bookmark the new RMA Radio home page, with embedded player and calendar of upcoming shows and featured guests.

Stream the show live, or play/download the podcast at your convenience.

Listen to Rocky Mtn Blogs on internet talk radio

I'll update co-host and guest info for each episode as it becomes available. Stay tuned . . .

RMA's shows are archived--if you missed any of them, be sure to check out the archive page to stream or download, or scroll down this page a bit, for the embedded archive player.

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March 23, 2009

Ward Churchill Testifies (Finally): "I Am Not In Favor Of Terror," Profit Motive Made 9/11 Victims "Little Eichmanns"

Today's earlier Week 2 recap. Drunkablog contextualizes Churchill's contextualizations on the stand earlier today. PirateBallerina has even more.

From the Denver Post Churchill blog:
Churchill is putting the meaning of his 9/11 essay in context for the jury. "I am not in favor of terror," he said.
. . .
"If the country wanted to avoid a repeat performance, maybe they should stop doing what it was that prompted the attack in the first place."

Churchill said people did not understand that Eichmann was a "bureaucrat, a desk murderer" and his mistake was assuming people understood Eichmann's role when they read the essay.

"When you bring your skills to bear for profit for yourself and your clients, you are the moral equivelant of Adolf Eichmann," Churchill said. "He never killed anyone, but without him the killing would have taken a very different or inefficient form."
Churchill continues to perpetuate a conflation of staggering malevolence--that somehow those working in the Twin Towers on 9/11, those corporate types involved in free market capitalism, are the moral equivalent of a man who organized train schedules and facilitated the murder of millions of Jews. But he's not in favor of terror, so he has that going for him.

Maybe he can't help it--he was just a "copy editor, essentially" for one of his cases of academic misconduct.

Russell Means--Churchill just "writing the wrongs of history" or "righting the wrongs"--depending on the blogger:
"It's an insult to my people and my history," Means said. "It's a scholarly massacre and it's not right. It's full of holes and full of lies. It's unconscionsable, because they don't treat white professors at CU the same way."
Yes they would, if any of them acted as academically irresponsible as Churchill. There is "scholarly massacre" at stake here, the kind perpetrated by Churchill in pursuit of a purely political agenda.

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Where's Ward Churchillpalooza Week 3: Week 2 Recap, Will He Finally Take The Stand?



"Simply made-up, simply false . . . He just cheated"--University of Colorado sociology professor Michael Radelet, investigative committee member, on one of Ward Churchill's many faulty historical claims

Week 1 Recap--Churchill is expected to take the stand today, barring any more delays or snafus

March 16--Churchill's 9/11 essay "cruel and gratuitous", more here from the Daily Camera blog

March 17--Michael Yellow Bird on inventions in "oral history"; academic debates surrounding Churchill's questionable claims should "remain in the Academy and not in the courts"

March 18--MYB continued . . . "They don't invent facts, they invent the possibility that these things happen":
For the final question CU attorney Patrick O'Rourke asked indigenous studies professor Michael Yellow Bird during his re-cross Wednesday morning, he pulled up a transcript of previous testimony the professor had given to CU's Privilege & Tenure Committee and asked him if he had made the statement that "fabricated, made-up accounts promote the truth."

With a slight pause, Yellow Bird said yes.

"No further questions," O'Rourke said, closing his binder and taking a seat.
Lynne Stewart, yes that Lynne Stewart, will be defending Churchill this week.

CU investigative committee prof: Not "part of a right-wing attempt to get professor Churchill," problems with sourcing

March 19--technical snafu's deplete Churchill's crowd of supporters; CU's lead attorney goes on the offensive

March 20--Why the Churchill case matters from Vince Carroll of the Post; Churchill "hiding behind" oral tradition

March 23--Churchill lawyer claims that the powers that be at CU "disrespect Native people"; "He just cheated":
University of Colorado sociology professor Michael Radelet, who served on the investigative committee looking into allegations of academic misconduct by Ward Churchill, said his initial concern was that his colleague was being "railroaded" by people who wanted to see him punished for writing a controversial essay.

Radelet said he even signed on to a statement drawn up by his colleagues calling for Churchill's academic freedom and First Amendment rights to be protected by the university during the days after the 9/11 essay came to light.

"I am not and was not a person they would pick if they wanted someone to frame, railroad or even convict Ward Churchill of research misconduct," Radelet told the jury.

He testified that the committee, sensitive to the concept of academic freedom, "bent over backwards" to give Churchill the benefit of the doubt.

Radelet, who looked into allegations that Churchill had falsified information through his contention that there was "pretty strong circumstantial evidence" that Captain John Smith purposely introduced smallpox to the Wampanoag Indians in Massachusetts, said the claim was "simply made-up, simply false."

"He just cheated," he told the jury.
Drunkablog has Radelet's assertions that, by Churchill's standards, just about anyone in Boulder in 1996 could be a suspect in the JonBenet Ramsey murder.

Much more from the aforementioned Drunkablog, who has braved the trial's tedium and icy glares from the Chutchites for two weeks already, and PirateBallerina, who continues to serve up links galore to Churchilliana.

The Daily Camera's blog/story archives are here, and the Race to the Bottom blog offering legal insights into the trial continues to chronicle the Churchill legal saga.

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March 22, 2009

Dick Wadhams Decisively Reelected Colorado GOP Chair, Leondray Gholston Pulls Off Third Round Upset For Vice Chair

**Update 3--Scott McInnis "in" for Governor?

**Update 2--Lynn Bartels doesn't disappoint . . . Dick Wadhams accused of being "liberal"--heh.

**Update--photos posted (scroll).

Ben DeGrow was able to post before I got home from a long day at the state central committee organizational meeting, but his report is accurate.

I would like, however, to elaborate on the proceedings.

The vote totals for state chair were immaterial, but Christine Tucker's last-minute withdrawal appeared to boost Tom Stone's bid against current chair Dick Wadhams, and drew a round of gasps from the crowd. In the end, Wadhams was comfortably reelected. Both Tucker and Stone emphasized expanding the appeal of the GOP, with Tucker adamantly calling for attention to the youth within the party.

With Wadhams' reelection assured, the attention quickly turned to the crowded field for vice-chair, with Arapahoe County's Nathan Chambers (who appeared to be the establishment candidate) arguing that experience trumped vision, dismissing his main opponent's appeal as nothing more than "oratory." Chambers' speech, preceded by nomination from Attorney General John Suthers and a second from former Congressman Tom Tancredo, was tinged with self-importance. Leondray Gholston, on the other hand, continued his impassioned plea to build a strong fundraising campaign designed to turn Republicans into "shareholders" of the party. Following a first round vote without a majority (simple majority required, otherwise another round of balloting would ensue), Chambers' slight lead gave way to Gholston's second round improvement, a mere two votes from a majority necessary for victory. The remaining candidates for vice-chair, Curt Grina and Marti Albright, dropped out before the third round, throwing their support behind Chambers and Gholston respectively. Needing 175 votes for a majority, Gholston took the vice-chair position with 190+ votes, leaving many in the crowd shocked by the events that had just transpired.

The Wadhams-Gholston team, as Ben points out, has quite a task ahead of them--to make inroads in the Democrat-controlled state and federal legislative contingencies, as well as the five state-wide offices of Attorney General, Secretary of State, Treasurer, Governor, and U.S. Senator. The GOP will not be starting out from zero, as modest victories in the Colorado House in 2008 showed that a Republican comeback is not out of the question. The party also starts out this election cycle with no debt, and a headstart on political infrastructure. Needless to say, Republicans have a long road back to parity within the state, much less control. But the road to political dominance starts with the smallest of steps, and the new leadership team marries a vast amount of electoral and organizational experience in Wadhams with an impassioned infusion of vision, enthusiasm, and grassroots support in Gholston.

Waiting for the Lynn Bartels update on today's affairs, the Denver Post offers up the lame AP snippet--proving once again how much superior the Rocky Mountain News was in providing on-the-ground updates to local stories instead of relying on AP newsfeeds. Let's hope they return Bartels to the quicker turnaround we were used to seeing from her at the RMN.
Click to enlarge:


Starting bright and early, a very busy schedule.


Volunteers conduct credential check-in.


Rep. Cory Gardner chats with folks outside the auditorium


David K. Williams at the Leadership Program of the Rockies table.


National Committeewoman Lily Nunez.


The photo captions itself--Mark Hillman.


GOP Executive Director Michael Britt.


Tom Stone, candidate for GOP State Chair.


Senate Minority Leader Josh Penry places current State Chair Dick Wadhams' name into nomination.


Wadhams accepts the nomination.


The vote.


Attorney General John Suthers pleads with Republicans to make him less lonely by helping to elect more GOPers to state-wide office.


Rep. Doug Lamborn, CD-5


Rep. Mike Coffman, CD-6--with now former State Vice Chair Perry Buck looking on.


Rep. Cory Gardner fires up the crowd.


Former Rep. Bob Beauprez talks conservative principles.


Former Rep. Bob Schaffer, current chair of Colorado's Board of Education.


CU Regent Tom Lucero, candidate for 4th Congressional District.


Joshua Sharf, Denver County 2nd Vice Chair, speaks on behalf of Jewish Republicans.


Aurora City Councilman Ryan Frazier.

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