Commentary

Commentary - June 24th, 2013
9:19 am
Tue June 25, 2013

Nothing is quite as loud as the silence of a sawmill not running

Nothing is quite as loud as the silence of a sawmill not running.  Unfortunately, the sound of the closure of 28 sawmills in Montana since 1990, and the loss of over 3,200 direct, good paying, mill manufacturing jobs has been deafening.  These closures and job losses are the direct result of the increase in federal timber harvest litigation during that same time.

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Commentary - June 19th, 2013
2:46 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Finding Wildness at Home

Could it be that the simple act of planting a native snowberry shrub or quaking aspen in your back yard is more than an expression of decorative taste?  I’m willing to say that it’s actually a simple but highly significant act of conservation that fosters a way of relating to nature that we, and the natural world, could sorely use.  The ecological problems we face now require solutions on a mammoth scale—a paralyzing thought for those who care.  But perhaps before we can achieve the elusive political will to take on these problems, a more personal, psychological change must be nurtured.

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Commentary - June 20th, 2013
12:16 pm
Thu June 20, 2013

Millennials Making Change

We all hear it, all the time: “The trouble with kids these days is… ” This line is often followed by a string of complaints that detail the sense of entitlement and addiction to Facebook and other social media we often associate with the Millennial Generation.  But what if that’s just not true?  I’ve had the opportunity to work with young people from across Montana and I’m here to tell you:  not only are many of them motivated, intelligent, and selfless— they’re here to make change.

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Commentary
8:46 am
Thu June 20, 2013

Citizen Gun Ownership as a Way of Protecting Ourselves from an Authoritarian Government

          One important justification for having an armed citizenry is to keep the government from having a monopoly on the means of violence. If the government has that advantage over its citizens, so the logic goes, there is nothing to keep the government from using its armed advantage to displace democracy with authoritarian rule.

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Commentary - June 12, 2013
1:56 pm
Wed June 12, 2013

Elder Abuse Awareness

Good evening.  I’m Susan Kohler, CEO of Missoula Aging Services, the Area Agency on Aging for Missoula and Ravalli counties.  Tonight I want to raise the unpleasant but important topic of elder abuse.  By defining what it is and giving examples, I hope to increase your awareness of this growing “silent epidemic” and suggest ways we can all help stop its spread.

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Commentary - June 7, 2013
3:29 pm
Fri June 7, 2013

Women and families need comprehensive immigration reform

With Memorial Day behind us and summer vacation in full-swing, summer is just beginning to hit its stride here in Montana. Just talking about it brings a smile to my face: vacation, bbq, family, camping, fireworks, roasting marshmallows, swimming, and this summer, comprehensive immigration reform.

The season that seems to celebrate so many things American, is perhaps the perfect time for our country to embarking on an epic discussion of immigration reform.

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Commentary - June 6, 2013
9:25 am
Thu June 6, 2013

Was Stillwater’s Future Foreshadowed by Anaconda’s Past

It’s said that "those who do not learn from history are condemned to repeat it.”  Almost exactly thirty years ago the last Anaconda/ARCO miner laid down his tools.  Does that economic disaster provide lessons for Stillwater Mining today?

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Commentary - June 5, 2013
11:47 am
Wed June 5, 2013

Like No Other

This week across Montana, schoolchildren are scampering off to what they hope is endless summer.  Meanwhile their teachers close another chapter in their careers.  For some of them, it’s the last chapter.  But whether it’s the first, middle or last time, the closing of the school year is a bittersweet time for our K-12 schoolteachers.

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Commentary June 4th, 2013
9:15 am
Wed June 5, 2013

US Supreme Court's Balls and Strikes Count

Last month I spoke about how mandatory, pre-dispute arbitration clauses in consumer and employment contracts can never be fair, because the parties do not have equal bargaining power, equal experience in arbitration, equal ability to understand contract language, particularly the ramifications of the rights being waived, and an equal ability to insist on clauses being included or excluded in the contract. 

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Commentary June 3, 2013
9:53 am
Tue June 4, 2013

The Right to Bear Arms Against the Government

One of the interesting under-currents in the great American gun debate goes well beyond the right to self-defense against attacks on our person, family, or home. Instead it focuses on the need for the population to be significantly armed so that it can effectively rebel against a government that has become authoritarian and threatens our basic democratic rights and liberties.

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