Opinion

Commentary from a variety of Montana citizens expressing a range of viewpoints.

Views expressed by the commentators do not necessarily reflect the views of this station.

'Feelin' The Bern' Or Nixon Redux

Apr 29, 2016

I respect all who are “feelin’ the Bern.” Bernie Sanders has best articulated the challenges of the economically repressed American middle-class, helping many, including Hillary Clinton, find our voices about how badly the economic playing field is tilted to the advantage of the uber-rich and giant corporations and needs to be changed.

Montana Democratic Party Rules Increase Fairness

Apr 29, 2016

I am an active Democrat. I know little about how Montana Republicans select the delegates to their national presidential convention, but do understand the Montana Democratic Party approach.

History Says Keep An Eye On Federal Coal Payments

Apr 5, 2016

The Department of Interior recently announced a comprehensive review of federal coal leasing and a pause in most new leases. This has been done twice before during the Nixon and Reagan Administrations. Then, like now, those reviews and moratoria arose from concerns the public was being denied a fair return on the coal it owns. Seems like every time the system is fixed, it turns up broken again, leaving taxpayers on the short end of full and fair payment from the coal companies profiting from the people’s resources. How could that keep happening?

Who’s In Charge: The 'People' Or The One Percent?

Feb 29, 2016

“The people,” said a farmer’s wife in a Minnesota country store while her husband was buying a new post-hole digger, “The people,” she went on, “will stick around a long time. “The people run the works, only they don’t know it yet – you wait and see.”

Carl Sandberg in “The People, Yes” (1936) 

Opinion: Protecting People And The Environment

Feb 11, 2016

Republican/Tea Party political mantra includes phrases like “government is the problem,” “any business regulation is bad,” and we just need to “trust the marketplace” and the companies that inhabit it.

In an unusual nexus, Donald Trump’s latest excess against “Muslims,” a religion of 1.6 billion humans -- 23% of global population, coincides with the Christian season of Advent. The nexus is that on the tube we each can see two radically different versions of America. One view can be found by watching the political news, dominated by the face of Donald Trump, while the other view can be seen by viewing a presentation of the movie classic “It’s a Wonderful Life,” which runs every Christmas season.

The Montana Conservation Ethic

Dec 2, 2015

The Clean Power Plan is designed to reduce Montana’s contribution to the carbon pollution now affecting our climate and every person on earth. The steady flow of scientific verification along with daily weather reports demand action and political acknowledgement of a reality that must be addressed.

Is America About Doors Or Walls, Fear Or Hope?

Dec 2, 2015

Here on Thanksgiving Day my thoughts go to my family, which is like the face of America. My Catholic father was mostly Irish with a little Scottish, Welsh and English thrown in. My mother was Jewish with ancestors from Germany, Russia, Poland, Austria and England. One of my six brothers is married to a wonderful lady from Mexico. Their daughter is married to a Moroccan. One of my daughters married an African American. One of my brothers is gay and his partner is from Mexico. Our family includes a Native American and several Asian-Americans. We include Jews, Christians and Muslims. Parents and siblings, children and grandchildren, nieces and nephews, we are certainly part of that great jumble of differentness that is humanity – that is America.

Dorothy Eck: Building Bridges, Not Playing Bridge

Sep 28, 2015

Bozeman’s Dorothy Eck, 91, is the Grand Dame of Montana government and politics who is being recognized and honored at a dinner September 11. Over the years I have been privileged to work with Dorothy as a leader of the Montana League of Women Voters, a Constitutional Convention delegate & officer, and a 20-year State Senator. Dorothy Eck has been a mentor for many and an inspiration to us all, testimony that one person can really make a difference.

Dan Harrington: Mensch Who Made A Difference

Sep 28, 2015

I have been siting before my computer, hands above the keyboard, trying to start one of my regular commentaries. There were so many tempting topics to choose from. The Montana GOP effort to force citizens to publicly register their political party preference. The unique combination of Cry-baby and Bully that makes up Donald Trump. The Pope telling the U.S. Congress to deal the human causes of global climate change. And more.

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