Kevin Copeland: Nation is watching


Sept. 11 started out like any other week day. Hit the snooze a few times, get up, start the coffee, shower, dress and head to work. But in the brevity of time, between waking and the caffeine boost, the events leading up to the previous day had been completely overlooked. Only when a co-worker announced that “they had thrown the bums out,” was it realized that it was, anything but a routine day!

With euphoric excitement and a desire to read the details, I procured a copy of the Steamboat Today newspaper, only to be disappointed in so much as, in my mind’s eye, I had imagined something similar to the iconic picture of a grinning Truman holding up the newspaper that prematurely predicted a Dewey win. Instead, it was surprising to find a front page picture of a pink Thunderbird with headlines imploring the dismal travel experience drivers receive when entering Steamboat.

After briefly skimming the accompanying article (complete with typical lip service from our state representative, whom in attendance with the Transportation Review Committee, expounding on how she and her committee “will take all the feedback and decide whether any of the requests should be the focus of any upcoming legislation”), I found the story, back on page 15, which was of the most interest to myself and rural Colorado.

This historic recall (of Colorado Senate President John Morse and Colorado Sen. Angela Giron on Sept. 10) conveys an important message to every politician who locksteps to their party’s ideologies, in that, disregarding your constituents’ best interests, is paramount to political suicide. You hold an office by popular vote, not decree!

We all need to remember, on Election Day, those in the present administrations who have blindsided us with liberal, Front Range, New York and Washington agendas, by assuming among other things, that they possess intellectual insight as to how things should be done.

These same individuals perceive to know what’s best for all of us.

We are minimized as a voting bloc and thought ignorant of the ways of government. It is thought, we eventually all should be disarmed.

They’ve convinced their base constituents that their crusade on coal is justified and economically feasible and that we should give up good paying jobs in mining for a few marginal jobs in renewable energy. It is of no concern that thousands of other jobs piggyback on coal and its electrical generation. They offer no solutions to replace our mining wage and tax base. They’re consumed in the belief that they’ve been empowered with a higher mandate to impose upon us a doctrine, conveying when and in what form our energy needs will be, regardless of costs or proximity.

This blatant condescending disregard of our concerns and way of life is the reason many Colorado counties wish to secede.

We desperately need a government of pragmatic leaders who have our best interests in mind. People who discount their parties’ ignoble extremes and are willing to compromise with bipartisan solutions.

We have local problems; we need local solutions.

This was a wake-up call. It’s imperative that we now vote the other bums out (one local representative in particular).

The nation is watching.

Kevin Copeland



Harvey Lyon 2 years, 12 months ago

And the first thing we can do locally is send Diane Mitsch Bush back to her College Profession.

The woman has zero ethics in that she lied to me at least 4 times in 3 minutes regarding research she'd done on SB 252...have written proof. From gun control to green energy her efforts have been those of a child.....full of dreams but short on good thought, effort and engineering.

DMB is a socialoigist, and from all history I can find out, a damn good one. But instead of getting her thoughs across with her intellect she chooses to "impose" them on law. In other words, a tyrant, a dictator, that you can't gain by vote you take by force.

She's on the CO Transportation Committee. And a few weeks ago she came up here to solicit what "transportaion issues" we had in Routt County, and all of Western Slope. Nice.....But what didn't get put out was this was intended to be the focus of another 1% sales tax increase to fund. TAX AND SPEND.

I'd like to see a Representative that can make the hard choices, live within their budget, stop giving away tax dollars to fund their lively hood.

DMB needs to go from CO Government.


Harvey Lyon 2 years, 12 months ago

It should also be noted the following:

SB252: which required just about every rural electrical association not represented by a "Democratic Party Representative" to achieve 20% renewable energy by 2020 instead of the agreed upon 10%. The Governor's own energy Commission has now said that is a 2 Billion transfer of wealth from Colorado, can't be done locally.. And the original bill was just to get more jobs for the Representatives that built wind generators in their District...had nothing to do with green energy. Simply a "power ploy"to bolster Democratic Districts and rape Replublican Districts. Those are the facts.

Gun Control: Limited the size of new magazines to 15 and required private transfers to get background invesitigations at $50 a Pop. So far 6 of 10,000 have been denied.....and it will be less after the appeals.Christ, who cares if its 15 or 150000, the solution to mass murders does not lie in Gun Control, it lies in folks that know when a guy/gal are going "postel".

As I said here before, I showed up early to a Diane Mitsh Bush "Town Hall" and asked her about SB 252. She immediately got defensive, lied about who she talked to, and then stormed out of a private meeting. Clearly she was defensive in nature and wished to be viewed as an "enlightened dictator".She's not open to any discussion on her views, will lie, cheat and steal to get her agenda. She's worse than what's going on in DC.

The cost of her "dreams" is well into the hundreds of millions of Colorado Tax Dollars which could certainly be better spent on good programs that result in clean energy and less sociatal violance that involves guns.


Harvey Lyon 2 years, 12 months ago

And lets talk about CO Amendment 66. Or SB 191. This takes all the good ideas regading education of out children and lumps them all a bill that will raise your income taxes more than 33%.It does not, even in the iota, indicate a real, within budget change, indication of support for education for Colorado youth. It does increase "give away progrms", by 30%. Vote Democrat and you'll be taken care of like a serf.

The Democrats are not prepared to back off their "give to you if you vote for me" attitudes, even for the good of your kids. They don't care about your kids education. They care about getting people to the voting booth and voting for the Democratic Party.

"Give me your Tired, your poor, your hungry" has beome their matra...and the focus of their ground game. But you that are not tired, poor or hungry, due to hard work on both your education and work, need to recognize this.

Did you get picked up to go vote last election? Have your taxes gone up or down? Do you think that paying for another's health insurance is a good idea? How about their retirement?

Did you know that great schools such as Harvard and Boston College have top notch degrees on "how to win elections"?. What to say, whom to court? Did you know that we've had some 20 kids from Steamboat go to these schools in the last 10 study "Political Dynamics".?

The Democratioc Party, including Diane Mitsch Bush, is taking advantage of your ignorance and will return you nothing save higher taxes.

Which they will use to build their voting base as they have continually.

I'm in the later years of my young guys/girls have to make up your own mind...LOL


mark hartless 2 years, 12 months ago


You have the democrat party summed up fairly well.

Now what of the republcans? Until Obama the last republican in the white house was the spendingest president in the history of the world. Republicans like John McCain vote to suppress free speech. Few of them will address the treasonous neglect of our southern border. Only a small fraction of them have ever met a war they didn't like.

Much like the democrat party takes advantage of half the electorates ignorance, so too do republcans take advantage of the other halfs over-eager, misplaced, and often knee-jerk sense of patriotism and their misguided notions that this thing called America will always be. This mainfests itself in the form of never ending wars which have been, since 1944, basically without any real victory anywhere.

Although I am not old, I too am likely in the later years of my life and do not expect to have to bear the aweful consequences of the multitude of bad choices this generation has made for the past few decades. Ships the size of this republic sink fairly slowley. When Titanic struck ice it took hours for her to sink but her demise was a mathmatical certainty the moment her hull was breached. Americas hull is now breached and I personally believe her collapse is of a certainty,

The problems facing this nation are not too big to overcome mathmatically, but they appear to me to be far too big for the small, selfish, ignorant, haughty minds which are today at the helm of this once great republic.


Scott Wedel 2 years, 12 months ago

So the lesson of the recalls is that DMB should ignore Republicans and focus on her Democratic Party base? The recalls were moderates serving in a district where their party is slightly in the minority. So DMB in a district that is more Democratic then Republican is apparently being advised by members of the Republican minority to ignore them.

Fair enough.

Though, I don't understand why these same members of the minority party in her district are then upset that she doesn't automatically agree to their policy advice.


Mark Rueff 2 years, 12 months ago

In reality, the recall showed that Citizens United is having a huge impact across our nation. The NRA spent over $400,000 to recall those individuals. The senators obviously did not have the same deep pockets to counter. As we go into the third day of the shutdown, we need to remember that the majority rules in this country through public elections. In turn, the minority should not be able to threaten their way into running the government. Sorry Kevin, but it's not "liberal, Front Range, New York and Washington agendas" it the majority of people that voted this government into office. Keep voicing your opinion, vote in the next elections and maybe the tide will turn. But for now, we all need to act like civilized people even though we don't always agree.


Scott Wedel 2 years, 12 months ago

Actually, Citizen United allowed NYC Mayor Bloomberg to spent substantial money opposing the recall efforts.

The recall election showed that relatively low turnout for an election on one issue that the minority is more passionate than the majority of the recent general election can overturn the results of the general election. The recalls didn't succeed because the candidates substantially lost their supporters, but because their opponents were more successfully at getting their people to vote in the special election. They had won narrowly in the general election so it wasn't that hard for a change in voter enthusiasm to lead to different electoral results.

Note that the NRA carefully picked only two recall elections. They didn't go after DMB because the Democrats have a clear registration advantage and she won by a larger margin.


Fred Duckels 2 years, 12 months ago

Mark, Folks on the left are always preaching about civil discourse but they are the masters at using any means to justify the end. Look at the environmentalists and endangered species for example and the ensuing no holds barred tactics. Now are we to remain civil in the face of such chicanery?


Mark Rueff 2 years, 12 months ago

Fred, Those issues don't shut down the government. And I'll remind you that GW Bush was master of "my way or the highway". There was no negotiating with Dems on a lot of issues that were forced on them - tax breaks again and again, wars again and again. We didn't shut down the government to get our way. Maybe we should have though after the severe economic impacts of two wars, tax cuts and deregulation. How would you like it if one of your supervisors shut down work for a few days so they could get concessions from you? You'd probably fire them the first day, right?

Scott, good points.

And as a general point, nobody is trying to take away your guns or large magazines. Gun checks and magazine limitations are targeted to reduce mass murder. A study published last month shows that high gun ownership does not make a country safer, "the US, with the most guns per head in the world, has the highest rate of deaths from firearms, while Japan, which has the lowest rate of gun ownership, has the least."


mark hartless 2 years, 12 months ago

The secomd ammendment was not predicated on whether or not it nade this nation more "competitive": on the statistics.

Even if our murder rate was tripled it does not give anyone a right to demand we dump our guns.


mark hartless 2 years, 12 months ago

And the environmentalists don't shut down the government because they have found it to be an instrument of aid and advancement of their religion.

Instead they shut down limber mills, logging operations, power plants, etc which, for many of us, are way, way, WAY more useful and productive than the gubbamint.


John Fielding 2 years, 11 months ago

What is happening is a symptom of a more fundamental problem, that is the way money is budgeted and spent in the Federal government. In our City budgeting process each department budget is reviewed, each commits to certain tasks to be accomplished as well as can be done with the amount of money allotted to them. Few are given as much as they would ask for.

The approach the Republicans are taking in their opposition to ACA is much harder than simply to fund the department that administers the program at a lower level than its request. If the predictions are correct even the full amount requested will not be enough, and there is plenty of precedent for allotting less than requested. The problem that then emerges is that the programs difficulties are blamed on low funding levels.

In effect, this has a economic basis that must require massive amounts of taxpayer support. If the way for it to work is with universal support from young healthy people, but that is far more expensive for them than the penalty for not enrolling, they will not. A severe penalty must be enacted, one more expensive that the cost of enrolling. Otherwise we pick up the tab.


Mark Rueff 2 years, 11 months ago

Mark H, Who is demanding that you dump your guns? That has never been part of the issue. Nobody has ever asked for anybody to turn in lawfully acquired guns. If you own a gun, you can keep them and all the ammo you want. Now if you want to go buy a automatic rifle with a huge magazine, you'll need to get a background check and smaller magazine. I'm sure you would pass the check with no problems. But if somebody has a history of violence or mental history, they don't get a gun. That's fair.

Please tell me what limber mills, logging operations, power plants, etc have been shut down. The last time I looked, the energy companies are not having issues drilling everywhere possible, except the ANWR.


Fred Duckels 2 years, 11 months ago

Mark,, The lefties have the media, academia, and their cultivated dependency crop including a large percentage of government workers ready to cover their backsides. Any devious tactic that they choose as a political tool will be automatically accepted as main stream thinking. I am not in favor of a shutdown as I think that Obamacare will go the way of prohibition. The fly in this ointment is that O will be given the option of making the rules up as he goes in order to morph into single payer.


jerry carlton 2 years, 11 months ago

Mark Rueff Every thing starts slow and builds up over the years. Gay rights started as parades in SanFrancisco and is now mainstream thinking. Abortion started in back rooms illegaly and now is available on request. Gay marriage started with those parades. Large scale acceptance of pot started with the return of Vietnam veterans. Seizing peoples guns begins with passing more and more restrictive laws and developing a list of everyone that owns a gun. Of course all the gangs in the country, eespecially Chicago, will not be on that list.


Scott Wedel 2 years, 11 months ago

Gay rights, abortion rights, and legal mj all expand individual rights.

Gun control is more like auto safety where rules are added to limit the damage. Requiring a car to be registered with insurance and have airbags is not part of a plan to seize cars.

Gun control is not about seizing weapons, but about not letting criminals or the mentally ill to legally buy guns.


mark hartless 2 years, 11 months ago

Jerry hit at my response to you, Mark R.

When you say "...if someone has a history of violence...they don't get a gun..." you sir are in a state common to many... denial.

Look at Chicago, Detroit, etc. Violent people get guns all the time. Those who get shot with those guns consider it little consolation that they were acquired illegally.

I have very little respect for those who think laws change men. Laws do not change men; men change laws because they are unwilling to change their hearts.

And unlike Fred I am ecstatic about a government shutdown. I'd love to see 70% of it shut down permanently. It is little more than an overbearing tyrant parasite sucking the life out of this nation.


Scott Wedel 2 years, 11 months ago

"Those who get shot with those guns consider it little consolation that they were acquired illegally."

Those that get shot don't care if the shooter got the guns legally or illegally. But if criminals illegally acquired guns then the weapons can be confiscated when they are stopped and frisked. And even better, the criminals can be arrested for illegally owning a gun.

Laws are not passed to find a way to get after the generally law abiding people, but to find a way to more easily nail the criminals. Gun laws are not enforced on ranchers, but on people like drug dealers. A drug dealer with a gun doesn't need to be caught selling, but just the illegally acquired gun is good enough to be arrested.


mark hartless 2 years, 11 months ago

Considering the voluminous amount of laws on the books today I would argue that laws are passed in such numbers that they can never be enforced, nor is that any longer the intention. Instead they are selectively enforced based on who the power wants to intimidate.

Banana republics and other corrupt regimes have been doing this for centuries... with powerful results. As we slip further and more rapidly into a dictatorial banana republic of our own this trend will escalate here as well.

The american people are foolishly falling into the trap of "just give us more laws and we'll make you safe".

Putting everone in a cage makes them safe too... safe from all but their zoo-keeper... who is to say when the zoo-keeper turns into the monster with the gun???????


mark hartless 2 years, 11 months ago

We used to keep our chickens in a coupe to keep them safe from foxes, coons, etc.

But as the "gate-keeper" sooner or later we would take that chicken from the safety we provided and lay it's neck across the chop block out under the oak tree...

The providers of safety bacame the instruments of death for those ignorant chickens

Is uncle scam keeping you safe for your own good or for his???


John Fielding 2 years, 11 months ago

There is something inherently corrupt in enforcing laws only when there is a complaint.

I got a letter this spring advising me that I was being charged with several counts of violating the Community Development Code, penalties to include 6 months in jail and $999/day for each count.

I was advised that the 20' shipping container I use to support my home renovation was to considered a building, and regulated as such. But the neighbor across the street has two identical containers in his yard.

My plastic and steel hoops greenhouse was described as being built on City property. When the City surveyed the line they discovered it was 30 feet from where they thought, right where I said it was. I was encroaching on the setback, so I was ordered to remove it. But the neighbor two doors up has a hoop house in his front yard driveway

I was charged with maintaining my property "out of harmony with the neighborhood", my uses being unconventional, oriented to a micro urban farmstead. But one neighbor right across the street keeps a dozen or so of classic cars (junk?) and parts in his yard, and next door to him is a yard with no landscaping at all, just bare gravel all around the house. Only half the adjoining properties have conventional landscaping.

The list goes on, but in every case it was clear that others of my neighbors also had the similar nonconforming uses on their properties. The decision to prosecute me was based on persistent complaints by a neighbor or two who were willing to overlook the fact that right next door the same conditions existed.

The ability to use the city ordinances to harass neighbors must be curtailed. Any law the City decides to enforce on one must be enforced on all. If the City does not choose to enforce a law it must be repealed.


john bailey 2 years, 11 months ago

Wait, I thought you had to be pretty to live in the city? I know your place John and I like the look of it , funky cool , and functional. Screw the noisy neighbors . They got nothing better to do than harass those that are not like them selves, it appears. are you ready for the hula lesson? ~;0)


John Fielding 2 years, 11 months ago

Thanks John,

I am happy to let my neighbors have all the liberty they want, even when it infringes on mine somewhat. I accept that putting up with neighbors different strokes is part of living in town. If you can't, you should move to the country.

My neighbor with the classic cars used to always exercise their motors on Sunday morning, noise and fumes coming up into my garden. Sometimes I would have to go do something else till he was done. It bothered me but I figured he was within his rights, never looked to see if I could have the City make him stop.

The hardest neighbor to put up with was the Old West Steak House. I'd be in my garden when the smell of their grill came wafting over, make me so hungry I had to go in and fix dinner. ;-)


Brian Kotowski 2 years, 11 months ago

Mark Rueff:

You couldn't be more wrong about who had the deep pockets. The recall funding disparity was heavily weighted in favor of the two senators: $540k for the recallers v. $3 million for the gun controllers (including 350k from Michael Bloomberg). That's what you get for relying on partisan hacks to stroke your dogma. Because the truth should never be permitted to impede one's demagoguery.


Scott Wedel 2 years, 11 months ago

I think Citizens United has become a bogeyman without factual justification. Yes, it allows lots of money to be spent, but there has been no evidence that it provides an unfair advantage to either party.

I think partisan gerrymandering is a far more destructive to democracy. An individual's vote matters little if stuck voting in a district that one party has a clear advantage. Obviously, some areas have more people of one party or the other, but when political leaders draw political maps to focus those variations for political advantage then there are virtually no competitive campaigns left.

The voters of California passed two important initiatives supported by Arnold S. The first assigned redistricting to a nonpartisan commission with specific guidelines of following city lines, county lines and geographical divisions to prevent gerrymandering. The maps they drew after the 2010 Census was generally considered to be the fairest in many years. The second created open primaries with the top voter getters advancing. So some districts with big advantages for one party ended up with two people of the same party in the general election. And, for instance, a moderate Democrat beat an incumbent Democrat liberal Pete Starkey of 40 years whom never would have lost either a primary challenge or a general election to a Republican.

Overall, California in 2012 defeated more Congressional incumbents than in the previous 10 years combined.

I think the voters of Colorado should start pushing for that sort of reform here.


Mike Isaac 2 years, 11 months ago

Scott W, are you serious. You think Colorado should follow California policy. The people out their vote for taxes that kill their economy that cost them their jobs and force them to move. Most of these people move to Texas but many come here and bring their job killing voting habits.


Scott Wedel 2 years, 11 months ago

Not every idea in California is automatically bad. Their electoral reform has already been shown to work spectacularly if defeating entrenched incumbents is considered good. No, they didn't defeat all, but they did defeat more in 2012 than had lost from 2000 to 2010. Which is rather spectacular since 2006 and 2010 were tough years for congressional incumbents.

Also, these electoral reforms have nothing to do with economic policy so why did you use their economic policy to criticize electoral reforms?


mark hartless 2 years, 11 months ago

"Not every idea in California is automatically bad..." hee hee

Reminds me of another quote I'll probably butcher...

"the race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong... BUT THAT'S THE WAY TO BET."


Karl Koehler 2 years, 11 months ago

A third recall effort in Colorado is gaining traction. The crosshairs are now trained on Senator Evie Hudak of Westminster. If you did anything at all to support the successful recall efforts of Senators Morse and and Giron, you know your voice and your signature and your financial expression of support can and in fact did make the difference. The battle was won, but the war continues on.

I'd urge everyone with an ongoing interest in this issue to educate themselves about Senator Hudak's role in the same political debacle that Senators Morse and Giron have already been held accountable for. In the interest of fairness alone, Senator Hudak should receive the same treatment.


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