HUDSON: WHOPPING BUDGET DEFICITS OCCUR IN BOTH PARTIES
Thirty years ago Colorado’s Republican leadership would run a legislative resolution each election year demanding a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution. No one took this exercise very seriously. It was well understood the effort was simply a political ‘gotcha’ that allowed Republican challengers in swing districts to flog Democratic incumbents who voted against these bi-annual budget balancing proposals.
HUDSON: WILLING TO WORK EVEN IF THEY AREN’T GETTING PAID
I worked my first project with Volunteers for Outdoors Colorado (VOC) twenty years ago. We replanted an alpine wetlands to better filter toxic wastewater spilling from several abandoned mining tunnels along the flanks of Mt. Princeton in the Collegiate Peaks range. I’ve tried to work two or three similar projects each summer since with VOC. For the first decade, I labored as a strong back building hiking trails, constructing bridges and wildlife viewing platforms, even preparing urban gardens and installing park equipment. Whatever the project required.
TEEGARDEN: THOSE WHO MADE THE GRADE
Over the four-year duration of the Civil War, the Union Army included close to 2,500 “generals.” But that number is somewhat misleading in that it includes almost 2,000 “Brevet” Brigadier Generals. While the “Brevet” rank is somewhat complex to understand in its entirety, it is roughly analogous to a modern day combat medal or other honorary award for valor. The Brevet rank typically did not carry with it a commensurate level of authority or pay, but those who received a Brevet promotion in rank were entitled to use the associated honorific permanently.
KOPP: SOUND THE ALARM
Under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, Colorado must adapt to new federal mandates that will dramatically affect health care costs and the insurance plans available to health care consumers. How will Colorado cope with these new and costly federal mandates?
TEEGARDEN: LESSONS FROM THE CIVIL WAR
July 21 will mark the 150th anniversary of the first “major” battle of the American Civil War, which was referred to as “Bull Run” by the Union, and as “Manassas” by the Confederates. Hopefully any serious students of this particular battle will forgive my oversimplified explanation of the battle itself, as I’ve tried to capture the highlights.
HUDSON: DEPLOYMENT GIVES US TIME TO REFLECT
First to fight for the right,
TEEGARDEN: “That this nation, under God, shall have a New Birth of Freedom”
As an undergraduate student, I once had the temerity to ask a Lincoln/Civil War scholar which of Lincoln’s numerous speeches should be considered his greatest. For a moment he looked piteously down at my lesser being, then smiled and suggested that, rather than pick one favorite, all good citizens should simply read, assimilate, and reflect upon all of them. Yikes!
HUDSON: MY DAY IN PARKING COURT
Denver residents should be thankful that Mayor Bill Vidal has closed 75 percent of next year’s municipal budget deficit. His success may prevent the Hancock administration from considering Doug Linkhart’s proposal to auction off the city’s parking revenues to a private collection firm. My daughter lives in a California municipality that has taken this road, and, while their parking revenues are up, this windfall has only been achieved by unleashing a rabid army of ticket writers who receive commissions on their daily volume of infractions.
TEEGARDEN: A SAD LEGACY OF AMERICAN SACRIFICE
During the American Civil War, prisoners of war presented major logistical, political and humanitarian challenges to both the Union and the Confederacy. And, like virtually all other aspects of that conflict, the Union, for the most part, did a better job of handling those challenges. But the horror was widespread on both sides.
TEEGARDEN: JOHN WESLEY POWELL WAS HIS NAME
Until this week, I had not spent much time trying to intertwine my two favorite topics for lifelong study: the American Civil War and the Colorado Plateau Region.
But when my publisher/editor/friend at The Colorado Statesman, Jody Strogoff, returned from a “road-trip” to the West Slope in conjunction with Governor Hickenlooper's public policy and community outreach tour, I began reminiscing about my own recent road-trip to the Battlefield of Shiloh (Tennessee) and Vicksburg (Mississippi).