Tag Archives: politics

Stop letting the news media pick candidates

September 21, 2015

By Bob Cox

Some opinions, comments and links relating to what is happening in this great nation and, in particular, in Western Colorado.

 

I do not think it is any great revelation that I am a registered Republican. I hold strong to the concept of the Republican Party, but the problem is that is seems more and more to be just that – a concept. I am getting more than a little fed up with the non-action of those who were elected to take action.

The leadership in both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate leaves a lot to be desired and the Republican National Committee is failing on behalf of all Republicans right now. When is the RNC going to stand up and put a stop to allowing the news media to choose their candidates?

These so-called debates are good examples of how the Republicans are running scared and failing to be a political party. These over rated get-togethers are not debates; they are news media events and nothing more. Debates do not have news reporters asking questions. That scenario takes place every day on various news outlets and in the printed media every day.

I know it takes a long time, but even a cursory review of what happened in 1858 would be a good thing for the people in charge of the RNC. It should be a required activity for every national level candidate.

In 1858 Stephen A. Douglas was solidly planted in his seat in as one of the two U.S. Senators from the state of Illinois. Abraham Lincoln was attempting to unseat Douglas and what ensued has become a national historical treasure. Lincoln lost the election, but anyone familiar with the story behind the story knows that the series of seven debates between Lincoln and Douglas put Lincoln on a certain path to the presidency.

The debates took place between August 21, 1858 and October 15, 1858. Because of the technology available to us today, anyone can read the transcripts of those debates. Some of us who had the privilege of being in a school where we learned things and schools that had active speech and drama curricula, actually had to study what happened during those debates.

There were no news media asking loaded questions, although there were a few interruptions from spectators (there were from 1,500 to 15,000 people at each of the debates). Basically, one candidate opened the debate with a one-hour address. His opponent then had 30 minutes to respond. Accusations flew and fingers were pointed, but at the end of the debate the observers knew more about their candidate than they did when it started. Those were debates.

Today, one of the most active youth organizations in the country is the FFA. They have a speech and debate program that is amazing. Although I never was part of the FFA I certainly was subject once to their well-organized efforts in a debate. I suggest that the RNC contact the national organization of the FFA and have an RNC-sponsored debate with someone from the FFA serving as a moderator.

In my scenario, the news media would be invited to attend, observe and report; nothing more. They would not be given time during the debate to address the candidates. Interviews and Q&A by the media would be done on their time after the debate concluded. In order to facilitate a large number of candidates the RNC could run the thing like a tournament with FFA judges. They can work out the details. In short, if we are going to have Republican debates they should be run by Republicans, ditto for the Democrats. Let the news media do their job and be reporters, not part of the process.

Remember, I only send out these missives to those who have asked for them. I do not share your email addresses with anyone and I use the Reagan email precisely because they don’t share or sell the addresses either. If you are getting this because someone forwarded it to you and you don’t want it, tell him or her not to forward any more. On the other hand, if you received a copy and would like to see more of my ranting, simply drop me a line at coxnotes@Reagan.com I will put you on my exclusive, but growing list.

Bob

© Robert R. Cox 2015

 

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Is Hickenlooper really capable?

June 23, 2014

By Bob Cox

Some opinions, comments and links relating to what is happening in this great nation and, in particular, in Western Colorado.

 

 

The disappointing governing of Governor Hickenlooper

 

This last weekend I spent an enjoyable evening and day with some of my peers in the Colorado Hunter Education program. We meet periodically to offer our input on the program and receive training to enhance our performance as instructors.

 

It is not surprising that an overwhelming (but not unanimous) number of my fellow instructors hold the same beliefs that I do regarding Colorado’s overreaching gun control laws that were passed last year. It is also not surprising that our evening conversations included the recent address made by Governor Hickenlooper at the meeting of the County Sheriffs of Colorado in Aspen.

 

For the last week Gov. Hickenlooper has been trying to walk back some of the comments he made to the sheriffs. He should have realized from the get-go that these law enforcement experts deal in the difference between fact and fiction every day and they quickly recognize the efforts of someone that is trying to make fact out of fiction.

 

When this whole gun debate was taking place last year, it became an established fact that Gov. Hickenlooper communicated with Mayor Bloomberg of New York. In fact, the bloggers at CompleteColorado.com requested the cell phone records from Hickenlooper’s office and confirmed that Bloomberg and Hickenlooper talked twice on March 2, 2013 and that one of those conversations lasted 12 minutes. They talked again on March 19. In April spokesman Eric Brown confirmed those conversations. But, fast-forward to last week, and Gov. Hickenlooper stood in front of a room full of sheriffs and said he had never talked to Bloomberg about the gun issue.

 

Almost as upsetting is the fact that, in a failed effort to patch things up with all the sheriffs that disagreed with the gun bill, Hickenlooper tried that old Obama tactic of blaming someone else, in this case some unknown staff member. He said he “felt conflicted” about signing the bill that limited magazine capacities, but did so because one of his staff made a commitment to do so, and he felt compelled to sign the bill. Thanks to Montezuma County Sheriff Dennis Spruell, many of us knew about the governor’s comments almost immediately after he made them. Because of Spruell’s Facebook posting, the governor will have a hard time backing up too far.

 

Two things bother me here: First, it is upsetting that Gov. Hickenlooper would even try to pass off an easily refuted statement such as his not talking to Bloomberg. Second, if he is making such monumental decisions because a staff member wants him to, what does that say about his ability to actually “govern?”

 

One other thing: I just read a quote from State Rep. Rhonda Fields. Fields is from Aurora and thought that the magazine bill would prevent more of those stupid mass shootings. I can understand her passion, although I think she is wrong, but what she said when asked about the commitment from a staff person only heightens my concern. She said she never received any commitment from anyone on Hickenlooper’s staff. It brings to mind Sir Walter Scott: O, what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!

 

Remember, I only send out these missives to those who have asked for them. I do not share your email addresses with anyone and I use the Reagan email precisely because they don’t share or sell the addresses either. If you are getting this because someone forwarded it to you and you don’t want it, tell him or her not to forward any more. On the other hand, if you received a copy and would like to see more of my ranting, simply drop me a line at coxnotes@Reagan.com I will put you on my exclusive, but growing list.

 

Bob

 

© Robert R. Cox 2014

 

 

 

 

Colorado Senator lending to bad neighbor reputation

June 9, 2014

By Bob Cox

Some opinions, comments and links relating to what is happening in this great nation and, in particular, in Western Colorado.

 

Colorado’s reputation of being a bad neighbor is being made worse by our senator.

 

Last week, I was given some information that was intended to debunk some of Sen. Harry Reid’s phony attempts at campaign finance reform through a constitutional amendment.

 

The information was that Reid and former Vice President Al Gore personally met with Tom Steyer at his home to firm up a deal whereby Steyer, a billionaire super-donor to the Democrat Party, would provide $400,000 in campaign donations, with another $100 million on the table. The larger amount came, according to reports, with a caveat: Keep delaying and ultimately stop the Keystone Pipeline.

 

Nothing about the information surprised me at the time. The meeting evidently took place last February, but was not reported on very extensively. The fact that it was not reported on and the fact that Reid is a hypocrite added little to my base knowledge of how things work. Then, I found out that Reid and Gore were not the only ones at the meeting. There were five other Democrats there, including our own Sen. Mark Udall.

 

With Colorado quickly gaining a reputation of being a bad neighbor because of the marijuana laws and the problems those laws are creating for bordering states, especially Nebraska, it seems Sen. Udall is going to take it a step farther and be part of denying our neighbors in Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma the possibility of having some very good jobs that will certainly come with the pipeline.

 

I could almost understand it if Sen. Udall opposed the pipeline because it was going to come through Colorado. At least then he would have some standing, but to throw in with these seemingly corrupt people to halt a project that cannot in any way harm Colorado, and will quite likely help some of us, is ludicrous.

 

Remember, I only send out these missives to those who have asked for them. I do not share your email addresses with anyone and I use the Reagan email precisely because they don’t share or sell the addresses either. If you are getting this because someone forwarded it to you and you don’t want it, tell him or her not to forward any more. On the other hand, if you received a copy and would like to see more of my ranting, simply drop me a line at coxnotes@Reagan.com I will put you on my exclusive, but growing list.

 

Bob

 

© Robert R. Cox 2014

 

 

The EPA is going nuts

June 2, 2014

By Bob Cox

Some opinions, comments and links relating to what is happening in this great nation and, in particular, in Western Colorado.

 

Many times over the past 40 or so years, I have heard the cliché that there are more fights started in Colorado over water than over unfaithful spouses. My adult beverage research crowd assures me that the saying started at about the same time Colorado became a state, and maybe even before that.

 

While that is somewhat of a joking phrase, it tends to show just how important water is to the people of Colorado. I would be impossible to put a number on exactly how many landowners in Colorado have some sort of dry wash, arroyo or old ditch running through their property. Many people will probably curly their brows in disbelief if they were told that all of these depressions in the earth could be considered to be part of the “navigable waters” of the United States, but every time some government agency extends its tentacles into our otherwise private lives bad things happen.

 

When the Rivers and Harbors Act was passed in 1899, it prohibited anyone from obstructing (building a dam) on “navigable waters” without first obtaining a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. USACOE subsequently described in their code that, “Navigable Waters” are waters that are subject to the ebb and flow of the tide, and those inland waters that are presently used, or have been used in the past, or may be susceptible for use to transport interstate or foreign material into such water, or the accomplishment of any other work affect the course, location, condition or capacity of such waters.

 

As states became states, even prior to the Rivers and Harbors Act, they assumed the ownership of roads and highways as they were constructed for transportation purposes. Included in that assumption for most states was any flowing water that had, for any reason been used for transport of commodities of any sort. So, a Native American paddling a canoe up the Uncompahgre River at any point made the entire river navigable waters. The term has been expanded by one government agency after another. Now the Environmental Protection Agency, under the guise of the Clean Water Act is changing the terminology even more by referring to “traditional navigable waters.” They are in the process of really putting the screws to the ranchers and farmers in Arizona, and Colorado is sure to feel the impact. Their goal is to see to it that every ditch, canal, dry riverbed and adobe arroyo will fall under their jurisdiction through the CWA. The people in Arizona, particularly the farmers and ranchers are right to be concerned and the people of Colorado had better stand up and be counted right along with them. It is time to get back some of the controls that these out of control government agencies are taking from us, one piece at a time. EPA Region 9 administrator Jared Blumenfeld says that the Arizona move does not expand the EPA jurisdiction. Sound a lot like, “If you like your water, you can keep it.”

 

Remember, I only send out these missives to those who have asked for them. I do not share your email addresses with anyone and I use the Reagan email precisely because they don’t share or sell the addresses either. If you are getting this because someone forwarded it to you and you don’t want it, tell him or her not to forward any more. On the other hand, if you received a copy and would like to see more of my ranting, simply drop me a line at coxnotes@Reagan.com I will put you on my exclusive, but growing list.

 

Bob

 

© Robert R. Cox 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

Needed: real UV protection

By Bob Cox

May 5, 2014

Some opinions, comments and links relating to what is happening in this great nation and, in particular, in Western Colorado.

 

 

I do not routinely rummage through my wife’s “personal” stuff. I don’t think I have ever opened her underwear drawer or went beyond retrieving her car keys from her purse.

Then, recently, while looking for something entirely different, I came upon a small bottle, which dominantly displayed the words “maximum moisturizer with maximum UV protection.” I locked the bathroom door, squeezed a substantial glob of this stuff into my palm and began rubbing it all over my body, with special attention to the top of my head and around my ears.

 

Why Diane had never told me about this stuff was a mystery to me. How could she keep something so important a secret? In my analytical mind, I began to understand things much more than I ever had, but the question about her secrecy kept coming up.

 

Each morning thereafter, I waited until my bride of more than 45 years left the house. Immediately after my shower I began rubbing this amazing cream on my significant and ample body. I waited for the results, but the stuff just did not seem to work that well. I decided to confess my deeds and ask advice. After all, she had evidently been using the cream for a long time.

 

That evening I deftly worked the topic into the conversation and asked if the cream really worked. I received a simple, “Well, I like it.”

 

“But, does the UV protection really work? I asked. Again, a rather dismissive answer: “I guess so.”

 

“So, why didn’t you ever tell me that you had a cream that will protect me from Uninformed Voters?”

 

What a letdown! She tells me that the UV stands for “Ultra-Violet.” There really is no protection for uninformed voters. I guess I will just have to keep trying to tell people what I think and hope that they either confirm my words through other sources or prove me wrong. At least that way I am doing something about the problems in this world. If I were a chemist I would be working on that UV cream though. I know we need something.

 

Remember, I only send out these missives to those who have asked for them. I do not share your email addresses with anyone and I use the Reagan email precisely because they don’t share or sell the addresses either. If you are getting this because someone forwarded it to you and you don’t want it, tell him or her not to forward any more. On the other hand, if you received a copy and would like to see more of my ranting, simply drop me a line at coxnotes@Reagan.com I will put you on my exclusive, but growing list.

 

Bob

 

© Robert R. Cox 2014

 

 

Revenue or deterent?

April 7, 2014

By Bob Cox

Some opinions, comments and links relating to what is happening in this great nation and, in particular, in Western Colorado.

 

For the most part I come out in favor of keeping regulations and laws on as local a basis as possible.

 

In Colorado, any municipality can adopt the Model Traffic Code and set their own parameters on things like stop signs, speed limits and traffic control, but they cannot do so in the case where state law prevails.

 

When cities and towns across Colorado began using red light and speeding cameras, they justified their actions by telling the public that the use of these devices acted as a deterrent to speeders and red light violators. They knew better, and those of us who really understand knew better also.

 

The big push for use of these devices came as lawmakers began to look at other states and locales that were using them. They did not see safety so much as they saw money; money that might come flowing in from people who rarely would challenge the charges because there was that undeniable pictorial proof of their guilt.

 

Greeley Republican Sen. Scott Renfroe has once again introduced a bill that would ban the use of these devices. The Colorado Municipal League will undoubtedly oppose the measure, and that is what they are supposed to do, but they will oppose it using that same mantra of deterrent and public safety. If they were really honest with themselves, they would admit that it is about money, not safety, just as Renfroe said last week.

 

Too often, we have allowed our traffic laws to become revenue generators rather than enforcement efforts for the good of the people. We are all aware of those stretches of highway where the speed limit is artificially low, or where speed limit signs, whether by design or neglect, are lacking or placed in such a manner as to almost ensure that drivers will be above the limit. We are also aware of the enforcement efforts that take place within those areas. We are constantly told that speed kills and that the enforcement of the speed limit is a deterrent.

 

If deterrence was really the name of the game, the Colorado State Patrol would paint their cars fluorescent orange and have the blue lights flashing constantly. Then, if someone sped passed them they should be severely punished. But, what is really happening is the those cars are painted grey, alarmingly close to the same color as the highway, then a couple of stripes are incorporated into the design to break up the pattern, and suddenly the cars become almost invisible when parked beside the road for the purpose of running a radar speed enforcement area. That is revenue enhancement. The same thing goes for those cameras. We conscientious drivers are looking at the traffic and the bicyclists and the young goofballs playing games. We are not looking for cameras. There are times when safety requires that we cheat a yellow light – maybe to avoid a rear end collision. The camera tries us, finds us guilty and fines us without due process. That is revenue enhancement.

 

It may come as a surprise to some that I feel this way, but my law enforcement career was based, I hope, on fairness and realizing that even the bad guy is human. I fully support Sen. Renfroe in his efforts. He is right, and being right puts a person in my favorable column every time.

 

Remember, I only send out these missives to those who have asked for them. I do not share your email addresses with anyone and I use the Reagan email precisely because they don’t share or sell the addresses either. If you are getting this because someone forwarded it to you and you don’t want it, tell him or her not to forward any more. On the other hand, if you received a copy and would like to see more of my ranting, simply drop me a line at coxnotes@Reagan.com I will put you on my exclusive, but growing list.

 

Bob

 

© Robert R. Cox 2014

 

 

Obama Care is hurting Colorado

By Bob Cox

March 31, 2014

Some opinions, comments and links relating to what is happening in this great nation and, in particular, in Western Colorado.

 

Today is the day that we will all know just how well the Affordable Health Care Act is doing; or will we?

 

There have been more adjustments and delays in this ambiguous piece of garbage legislation than in anything the government has ever done. We have witnessed out-and-out unconstitutional rewrites of a law by the executive branch of the government without any objections from the legislative branch. We have witnessed precedents that will likely haunt our system of government for years, if not forever.

 

Colorado is not exempt from the corruption caused by AHCA. Last week the Senate Health and Human Services Committee in the Colorado Legislature voted to kill HB 1257, a bill that would have permitted the state auditor to conduct a performance audit of Connect for Health Colorado, which is our state health insurance exchange.

 

I cannot help but think that this rejection is little more than another political ploy to distract our citizens from the fact that AHCA (Obama Care) is a complete and total failure.

 

To her credit, CHC board member Ellen Daehnick questioned the committee vote, but then turned around and explained why she questioned it, by saying that she was a lifelong Democrat and business owner and was concerned that the vote will harm Democrats in their efforts to seek re-election. That, folks, is what this is really all about.

 

After all why would a quasi-government non-profit organization that takes federal grant dollars need a state audit? Why would we want to audit anyone who spent $7.2 million on advertising? Why should there be any scrutiny into the fact that $46,000 of that went to buy exchange-branded packets of lip balm? Why should we question the need for an RV rental with an advertising wrap that cost us nearly $10,000? Why, oh why, should an arm of our government be audited when they pay outside lawyers up to $575 per hour? Were the proposers of HB 1257 getting just a little nit-picky over such trivial things?

 

Lastly, should we be just a little concerned about an organization that hired Christa McClure? McClure was recently placed on paid leave, after it was determined that an indictment filed in the U.S. District Court in Billings, Mont. alleges that, while serving as the executive director of the federally funded Housing Montana, she paid herself a potful of money for “consulting services” while she was already on the payroll under the designation of being a full time employee. The indictment alleges many other violations. Do we not need to take a closer look at an organization that failed to vet someone to that degree?

 

This all boils down to protecting those who support the AFCA. It is nothing less than corruption, and we need to take note of who is involved. The members of the committee are: Irene Aguilar, Chair; Linda Newell, Vice-Chair; Larry Crowder, Owen Hill, John Kefalas, Kevin Lundberg and Jeanne Nicholson.

 

Remember, I only send out these missives to those who have asked for them. I do not share your email addresses with anyone and I use the Reagan email precisely because they don’t share or sell the addresses either. If you are getting this because someone forwarded it to you and you don’t want it, tell him or her not to forward any more. On the other hand, if you received a copy and would like to see more of my ranting, simply drop me a line at coxnotes@Reagan.com I will put you on my exclusive, but growing list.

 

Bob

 

© Robert R. Cox 2014