•  The crusade began with the Douglas County Board of Education in 2009. A shift in power took place, giving the forces of so-called reform a majority. That new majority began to impose rules that took aim at veteran teachers with the hope they’d move on and out. It’s succeeding.

  • Vox

     Can the county handle the I-70 pressure?


    I think most people don’t do stupid things because they are stupid; they do so mostly under pressure. 

    The Interstate 70 expansion is pressure that Idaho Springs and Clear Creek County would love to just go away. The Colorado Department of Transportation is also under pressure from those calling the shots under the Gold Dome in Denver. 

  •  The protracted, insidious war on anything public, launched by Ronald Reagan in his quip about the scariest thing one can hear, “I’m from the government, and I’m here to help,” has gone to excess. The war, by the way, does not include eliminating tax credits and other forms of corporate welfare. In the dystopian Randian world of absolute individualism, corporations are really people worthy of public largesse despite them being soulless entities focused on one thing only: profit. 

  • It’s been tradition for many to make New Year’s resolutions — e.g., lose weight, quit smoking — that most often fail to materialize. The reasons vary, but I suspect they primarily relate to the fact they are specific goals, which, while well-intentioned, are negative or reactive, despite being grounded in positive intention.

  •  As I read about the record-breaking Internet sales being reported this Christmas, I remember s0metime around 1985 I was asked to co-chair a task force at Sears headquarters to come up with ideas about how the retailer should leverage the use of the Internet. 

  • Vox

     It’s time for the penny to buy the farm


    If it costs 3 cents to mint a penny, why not do away with the penny?

     I mean, after all, does it make sense? Or cents?

    Of course, you realize this would mean our costs would go up. For instance, instead of something costing $1.03, now it would cost $1.05. But hey, just think of the possibilities. It could help pay for health care or even help reduce our national debt.

    Think about it.

  • What a gift, and just in time for the holidays! Well, the unwrapping will be delayed, but the FCC’s granting of a stronger signal for KYGT-FM, the Goat, is something that will greatly increase the service the nearly all-volunteer station provides to the Clear Creek community.

    KYGT has quite a history, reminiscent of Guglielmo Marconi’s first go at sending signals we take for granted today. I can’t do justice to the telling of it, but if you can tie down founder Greg Markle, he’ll regale you with a tale that’s both true and incredible. 

  • Vox

    What would a monorail ticket cost?


    How come nobody has told us what  a monorail ticket would cost yet? I am an architect, planner, engineer, GC and MBA with some experience in mass-transit design, including the monorail alternative. I am not an anointed  “expert”  or  big-name firm. But it ain’t rocket science,  just numbers with a lot of zeros at the end. Let’s take a rough shot at it, shall we?

  • In his eulogy for Nelson Mandela, President Obama said the world is not likely to see the likes of him again. Mandela’s life was a true model of unwavering personal courage, willing to self-sacrifice all for a greater and nobler cause than his own personal fortune.

  • Attorney General John Suthers, Colorado’s highest-ranking Republican official, has shed his conservative mantle and donned the robes of a curious progressive, so it seems. In his recent written defense of TABOR in the Denver Post, he points out, quite nicely and correctly, that a number of initiatives that we take for granted and that make life much more safe and bearable, such as the eight-hour workday, are products of the Progressive Era of a century ago. 

  • Vox

     Idaho Springs council should revisit

    proposal for Patriot’s Park


    As a nonpolitical concerned citizen and veteran, representing only myself, I would like to revisit the Patriot’s Park controversy.

  •  Dear Sis:

    OHIOPYLE, Pa. — You never shared my need to return to these rivers and creeks and hollows when wounded, this ancient place where water and stone wage their endless battle.

    I come here looking for sense, hoping there still is sense to be made, yet leave each time with the comforting and appalling certainty that life is merely a series of accidents, and we are their lucky or unlucky victims.

  • The lopsided defeat of Amendment 66, which was dedicated to increasing funding for public schools, has deeper implications and reasons than the much-ballyhooed stuff about voters’ economic concerns and it not being a good time to ask people to raise their taxes.

  •  It’s time to make a deal with James Holmes.

    As we approach the year and a half anniversary of the tragedy of the Aurora theater shootings and as the pretrial hearings continue (and continue and continue!), it looks less and less likely that Holmes will ever be executed. It would be in the public interest to get some kind of plea in place that assures Holmes will spend the rest of his life in custody, to achieve final resolution and to put this ordeal to bed once and for all.

  • In her defense of George W. Bush’s War on Iraq, national security adviser and later Secretary of States Condoleezza Rice used the phrase “status quo ante” to describe the situation in Iraq during the Saddam Hussein regime before the U.S. invasion. By so phrasing the situation, one of her points was that even the biggest critics of the war would not support returning Saddam to power.

  •  It’s hatched! For the past year, I’ve been sitting on a huge egg, tending to it like a mother hen. The egg was the Public Health Assessment required by the state of all local health agencies, and the five-year public and environmental health improvement plan mandated as part of the assessment -- thus the reason for my health column sabbatical. As indicated in Ian Neligh’s feature story in the Oct. 16 Courant, the entire improvement plan including the results of the surveys, focus groups, interviews and research studies is available at www.ClearCreekHealth.us.

  • Vox

    Patriot’s Park would be good for town
    Regarding the recent article in the Courant: It is incredible that a simple proposal to name a piece of city property “Patriot’s Park” could invoke such a storm of recriminations from the director of the library board.
    The allegations presented by the board of director are as follows:
    • The new name would detract from the classy, inspirational titles espoused by the director — i.e., “the yard” and “the library grounds.”

  • If you remember flashbulbs and the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, you’re likely over 60. For the nation, the ordeal was a “flash-bulb” moment, one that you accurately and vividly recall where you were, what you were doing and those you were with.

  • Vox

     CDOT’s endless presence, nightmare

    So, I guess CDOT is finally finishing it three-lane, 2-mile highway segment east of Idaho Springs. After this traffic debacle, I guess they are toying with a toll lane going west from Empire, then maybe a three-lane eastward tunnel bore.

    What does all this add up to? Two to three years of a living hell for all those traveling east or west of Idaho Springs, and in return for what? 

  • The two-part series I wrote on the wisdom of preserving open space atop Floyd Hill elicited varied responses, written and verbal. Some were specific to the issue itself and others about me changing my position and being willing to not only say so but also be clear in my explanation for the shift in perspective.