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Opinion

  • The Colorado General Assembly passed the halfway mark of this year’s 120-session last weekend. This year’s session has been marked by big reports, the arrival of TABOR author Douglas Bruce and a workmanlike tone. The biggest issues are likely still to come.

  • If you’ve been to Summit or Grand counties lately, you’ve seen the effects of the largest and most catastrophic pine beetle infestation in decades.

    As the Rocky Mountain News recently reported, “Every large, mature lodgepole pine forest in Colorado and southern Wyoming will be dead within three to five years,” based on projections from the U.S. Forest Service. The Rocky further reported that the outbreak, which began in 1996, has infested 1.5 million acres of trees, culminating in an unbelievable 500,000 additional acres in 2007 alone.

  • Hannah Hayes

    In typical “Both Sides Now” fashion, there are contrasting ways that citizens might feel about government authorizing wiretaps on Americans communicating with those outside the country. President Bush felt that he had been granted the power to spy on us when Congress gave him unchecked authority to fight terrorism. That was a mistake made in the first week after the attacks on the World Trade Towers and the Pentagon.

  • Evergreen Middle School technology teacher Chet Andes is working to turn family misfortune into societal good, and his colleague J.R. Dunn is using it to teach his students about their responsibility to help others and their ability to influence the public.

  • Earlier this month, Barack Obama’s wife Michelle said that, “people in this country are ready for change and hungry for a different kind of politics and ee for the first time in my adult life I am proud of my country because it feels like hope is finally making a comeback.”

    At another speech later that day, she made a similar statement, saying that “for the first time in my adult lifetime, I’m really proud of my country ee not just because Barack has done well, but because I think people are hungry for change.”

  • Hannah Hayes

    Grassroots democracy was the big winner at Democratic caucuses. In that spirit, here are some impressions from those who participated.

  • This year’s presidential race is shaping up to be the most interesting and unpredictable in decades. Six months ago, conventional wisdom held that John McCain was finished and Hillary Clinton was heading for a coronation in Denver. So much for conventional wisdom.

    State legislators, like most Americans, are also watching the presidential race — but their interest also happens to be personal. Whom the parties nominate will have significant down-ticket effects, meaning that close state legislative races may turn on national trends.

  • It’s a little too early in this election year to declare democracy the big winner in 2008, but early returns are certainly encouraging.

    The stunning turnout by Democrats at Jeffco’s party caucuses Feb. 5 — 10 times the turnout during the last presidential campaign in 2004 — is an indication that long-apathetic voters are beginning to dip their toes in the puddles of populism that have somehow survived the last eight years.

    And in many precincts, the puddles overflowed.

  • “I am a clock without hands

    I’m walking through the midnights

    Counting all the moments

    Of the loves I’ve left behind.”

    — Nanci Griffith,

    “A Clock Without Hands”

  • Hannah Hayes

    The survival of our planet depends upon a large-scale shift in consciousness. Increasing the number of miles per gallon a car is required to achieve isn’t going to create enough change. If you are not already embracing a responsible 21st-century lifestyle, the journey might be uncomfortable at first, but it’s absolutely necessary. Reversing global warming and gearing up for sustainability requires steering outside of those double yellow lines and parking in an entirely new spot.

  • Hannah Hayes

  • I was a teenage dinosaur.

    Actually, I was in my early 20s when an old-school managing editor by the name of Gale Baldwin told me I’d just become the editor of a weekly section that would target readers in the 6-to-11 age bracket.

  • “When I find a well-drawn character in fiction or biography, I generally take a warm personal interest in him, for the reason that I have known him before — met him on the river.”

    — Mark Twain, in “Life on the Mississippi”

    Brad Bradberry never met a person he didn’t know, or with whom he couldn’t navigate a long, meandering conversation. While some people collect objects, Brad collected people: childhood friends, rivals, Rotarians, fellow publishers, bosses, employees, customers.

  • From the time I was diagnosed with cancer about 14 months ago, I wondered what the subject of my final column would be and when I would write it. Well, I’m no closer to a subject and have been wondering how much longer I could hold out, but now the time has come.

    Like everything else during my life, I have put it off until the last minute.

  • It was Sunday a couple weeks ago and, as always, I found myself at 8 a.m. in front of the TV watching one of those weekly news shows. The discussion, as always, involved the presidential race, and as I took a swallow of coffee, it occurred to me that I was completely wasting my time given that I will not be around to vote next November.

  • When I first came down with cancer and began the chemo routine, I never thought twice about the color pink. Now I notice every woman who comes into the chemo lab decked out in a pink hat with matching pink scarf.

    I understand that the color pink has come to designate those with breast cancer, which leaves out men for the most part. But today I wonder whether pink is confined to breast cancer. Do some of those women running around with pink hats have colon cancer? Or lung cancer?

  • There are days, and then there are days. I had a day last Saturday.

    It all started with my grandson’s 6th birthday party. My wife, who takes such things very seriously, spent at least two days running around finding party favors, candy, decorations and other assorted junk. By Saturday morning, you would swear we were in the home party business.

  • Seldom is the force of government more concentrated than at the moment a district attorney decides whether to pursue a case against a defendant. We hope our prosecutors are men and women of sound judgment and unimpeachable integrity, and for the most part they are. But every so often a case exposes how vulnerable our system can be to an unprincipled individual.

  • It’s getting tougher and tougher to write this column. Not because I have cancer, but because I simply don’t get around much anymore. I seldom stop by the newspaper, so I have little idea of what’s going on ee you know, the background stuff. Oh, I still read the paper, but nothing beats hanging around the newsroom, or talking with friends. That’s where the really good ideas come from.

  • Rockies World Series ticket nightmare