M. Douglas Wray

Politics before the Law

redneck_sherrif_sketchHere’s a list of ‘lawmen’ that have decided to put politics ahead of the Law they swore to uphold.

I wonder how long till they find other laws they don’t ‘like’ and decide not to enforce based on some ludicrous twisting of the Constitution.

Their actions in this ‘lawsuit’ do not serve the safety of the citizens they are charged with protecting – thus a violation of their oaths of office.

Every last one of them should be removed from office immediately. Calling them ‘heroes’ is the most sublime nonsense imaginable. They’re nothing but petulant little children with guns – a threat to every citizen they have authority over.

JOHN B. COOKE, Sheriff of Weld County, Colorado
TERRY MAKETA, Sheriff of El Paso County, Colorado
JUSTIN SMITH, Sheriff of Larimer County, Colorado
DAVID A. WEAVER, Sheriff of Douglas County, Colorado
BRUCE W. HARTMAN, Sheriff of Gilpin County, Colorado
KEN PUTNAM, Sheriff of Cheyenne County, Colorado
DENNIS SPRUELL, Sheriff of Montezuma County, Colorado
TIM JANTZ, Sheriff of Moffat County, Colorado
JERRY MARTIN, Sheriff of Dolores County, Colorado
MIKE ENSMINGER, Sheriff of Teller County, Colorado
SHAYNE HEAP, Sheriff of Elbert County, Colorado
CHAD DAY, Sheriff of Yuma County, Colorado
FRED D. MCKEE, Sheriff of Delta County, Colorado
LOU VALLARIO, Sheriff of Garfield County, Colorado
FRED HOSSELKUS, Sheriff of Mineral County, Colorado
BRETT L. POWELL, Sheriff of Logan County, Colorado
JAMES FAULL, Sheriff of Prowers County, Colorado
LARRY KUNTZ, Sheriff of Washington County, Colorado
BRIAN E. NORTON, Sheriff of Rio Grande County, Colorado
DUKE SCHIRARD, Sheriff of La Plata County, Colorado
JIM BEICKER, Sheriff of Fremont County, Colorado
RONALD BRUCE, Sheriff of Hinsdale County, Colorado
CHRIS S. JOHNSON, Sheriff of Otero County, Colorado
FRED JOBE, Sheriff of Custer County, Colorado
DONALD KRUEGER, Sheriff of Clear Creek County, Colorado
JAMES CRONE, Sheriff of Morgan County, Colorado
SI WOODRUFF, Sheriff of Rio Blanco County, Colorado
TOM RIDNOUR, Sheriff of Kit Carson County, Colorado
TOM NESTOR, Sheriff of Lincoln County, Colorado
STAN HILKEY, Sheriff of Mesa County, Colorado
FORREST FRAZEE, Sheriff of Kiowa County, Colorado
RICK DUNLAP, Sheriff of Montrose County, Colorado
TED B. MINK, Sheriff of Jefferson County, Colorado
DAVE STONG, Sheriff of Alamosa County, Colorado
FRED WEGENER, Sheriff of Park County, Colorado
BRUCE NEWMAN, Sheriff of Huerfano County, Colorado
RANDY PECK, Sheriff of Sedgwick County, Colorado
DOMINIC MATTIVI, JR., Sheriff of Ouray County, Colorado
JOHN MINOR, Sheriff of Summit County, Colorado
SCOTT FISCHER, Sheriff of Jackson County, Colorado
PETER GONZALEZ, Sheriff of Archuleta County, Colorado
RICK BESECKER, Sheriff of Gunnison County, Colorado
CHARLES “ROB” URBACH , Sheriff of Phillips County, Colorado
ROD FENSKE, Sheriff of Lake County, Colorado
GRAYSON ROBINSON, Sheriff of Arapahoe County, Colorado
DAVID D. CAMPBELL, Sheriff of Baca County, Colorado
MIKE NORRIS, Sheriff of Saguache County, Colorado
AMOS MEDINA, Sheriff of Costilla County, Colorado
MILES CLARK, Sheriff of Crowley County, Colorado
DAVID ENCINIAS, Sheriff of Bent County, Colorado
SUE KURTZ, Sheriff of San Juan County, Colorado
JAMES (JIM) CASIAS, Sheriff of Las Animas County, Colorado
GARRETT WIGGINS, Sheriff of Routt County, Colorado
DOUGLAS N. DARR , Sheriff of Adams County, Colorado

It’s been 1920 in Colorado long enough. It’s time to remove these badged NRA puppets from public office before they cause serious trouble.

Update – this article at ColoradoPols.com underlines how completely spurious this lawsuit is and why I predict it will fail.

The Worth of Water

We never know the worth of water till the well is dry. ~Thomas Fuller, Gnomologia, 1732

On Sunday Jan. 9 the Longmont Republican Women held an event called “New Year New GOP” at the Well and indicated it was ‘Open to the Public.’ Well, I could hardly turn that down!

Here’s the photos I took:

[flickr-gallery mode=”photoset” photoset=”72157632455665455″]

There was a lovely spaghetti & meatball dinner provided by Mark Price of Aunt Alice’s Kitchen. I love Aunt Alice’s so I know it was great food. There was also a very tasty looking dessert from the folks at the Well. I didn’t partake, just didn’t feel right mooching a meal, being a lefty and all. Besides, there was a respectable crowd (in all senses of the word of course!) gathered in the Well’s cavernous industrial space and they were hungry – not just for food either.

Joel Champion announced the formation of the Private Property Council, a non-partisan group with open membership. The mission is education and the setting up of teams ‘to do monitoring of our public officials who are elected and help move our ideas forward in legislation at all levels of the city, county and state.’

At one point Joel mentioned ‘our Democratic friends in the audience’ which prompted Peg Cage to ask him to introduce Kaye Fissinger and myself. Thank you Joel! Thank you Peg! We appreciated being allowed to attend.

Here’s all the rest of the details of those speaking.

Derrick Wilburn, Founder, Rocky Mountain Black Conservatives gave a well-polished and aggressive lecture about what the GOP needed to do to get the votes of conservatives of color. Solomon Martinez gave a report about the Northern Colorado Hispanic Relations group as well as his views on outreach. The featured speaker, Tom Tancredo – confessed to suffering from ‘Post Election Stress Syndrome’ and said it had been ‘debilitating.’ CO GOP Chair Ryan Call laid out the wreckage of the campaign like an FAA crash inspector. It was some hard talk.

I left before the question and answer period but I’d be delighted to link to any audio files from that.

New Year New GOP speaker audio files

Brought to you by: Longmont Republican Women, The Well Outreach and Worship Center, The Longmont 9-12 Tea Party

Scofflaw Ex-Mayor Arrested for Failure to Appear

Brian Baum - Arrested after failing to appear for traffic court

Brian Baum – Arrested after failing to appear for traffic court

Wow. Just wow…

Longmont’s has-been ex-mayor Bryan Baum, obviously still a slow learner even after his last run-in with the Boulder County court system, caused a potentially-fatal accident involving a motorcycle and then didn’t show up for court on Oct. 17th. Apparently Mr. Baum has a real problem with authority – especially when he’s not in authority.

In 2010 he stalled paying medical damages to a Longmont family after dogs that escaped his property attacked a woman and her dog. The family took him to court and won a $566.62 settlement for medical expenses1 – after which he and his wife argued bitterly with the judge. Apparently there were also hard words outside the courtroom as well that prompted the officer on duty to ask them to leave.

The incident didn’t appear in the Times-Call until after FRL reported on it. Baum had paid the judgement – not much choice, the alternative would have been jail I suspect – and clearly had hoped it would simply stay swept under the rug. When the Times-Call finally published their story Baum called them and reportedly had this conversation:

(from Daily Camera online 10/25/2011)

“We paid our debt and now you are dragging us through this bullsh–,” Baum said, adding that he had receipts to prove the judgment was paid, although it was not yet reflected in court records. He said he would provide the receipts to the Times-Call, but added, “I am serious, man, but this is going to cost you. This is. You are going to pull my family into a bunch of crap.”

Asked what he meant about “cost you,” he replied. “We’ve got to get something in return for this.”

Mr. Baum subsequently lost a tight race for his mayor seat and sure seemed to be harboring a grudge; he and his wife (or someone close to them obviously) tried to claim that a post on Facebook by my stepson2 was ‘a threat’ and insisted I be arrested. The Boulder County District Attorney indicated it was ‘…not a credible threat…’3 but that hasn’t stopped Longmont’s hard-core partisan hate machine from trying to make hay with it – still to no effect.

To me, the funniest part of this new incident is that the accident took place as the ex-mayor was pulling out of the driveway of a McDonalds4.

The Times-Call story phrased it like this:

According to police reports, Baum was stopped facing west from the driveway to the McDonald’s near 19th Avenue and Main Street waiting to turn left onto Main Street. He pulled forward to attempt the turn, but stopped suddenly to accommodate another vehicle. When he stopped, a Harley-Davidson motorcycle traveling north on Main Street struck the car.

Sounds to me like he was in a hurry, pulled out without sufficient clearance, stopped directly in front of the motorcycle (to avoid getting hit himself) and the motorcycle didn’t have enough stopping room. Had this been on a street with a higher speed limit the accident might well have cost the motorcyclist his life. Luckily for the motorcyclist it didn’t.

It’s typical for people that don’t ride motorcycles to not give them enough attention but Mr. Baum has written about going for rides on his Harley so it’s pretty clear (to me at least) that he knew exactly how dangerous pulling out and stopping in front of a motorcycle was5,6. Probably why he was cited for “careless” driving. But more importantly he was also cited for “failure to produce insurance” – the same insurance you and I are required by LAW to have and carry proof of at all times when driving. Something tells me the motorcycle rider will be waiting for compensation for some time.

So, after causing the accident and getting ticketed he failed to show up in court. Only when a bench warrant was issued did he finally do the right thing and turn himself in. Maybe he is learning – imagine how bad a public arrest would have looked…

This is a man that thinks he should have another chance to sit on Longmont’s City Council – as an at-large councilman7 with a four-year term no less! – obviously hoping to weasel his way back into the Mayor’s chair some day.

At least that’s what the poorly-concealed rumors oozing out of Longmont’s extreme right say.

Here’s hoping this is the final nail in this poltroon’s political career and he’ll simply crawl away from the public spotlight for good.

One can only hope.

  1. The couple in question only asked for their out-of-pocket medical expenses when they easily could have sued for much more. But really? $566.62?? The guy’s a ‘wealth manager‘ – must not have much to manage.
  2. A veteran of two tours in Iraq and Purple Heart recipient
  3. I believe that’s lawyer-talk for ‘bullshit
  4. Especially since his wife and friends have been tweeting relentlessly about weight loss
  5. Assuming he ever took a motorcycle riding safety course…
  6. Or just didn’t give a crap…
  7. Hoping to knock yet another Democrat off council?

Mr. Frackenlooper’s Town Meeting

Father and daughter have a special view of the governor.

Big John Hickenlooper apparently only hangs out with the ‘real’ people, not those pesky ‘constituents. It tickled my heart to see all these folks come to say quite clearly that they wouldn’t stand quietly by as their lives and homes were bargained for.

Here’s the Flickr gallery of photos.

From Silver Creek Leadership Academy students:

A few educational notes about public photography

The following is from Petapixel and is the text of a reference on photographers rights. If you’d like to submit a photo to Free Range Longmont, please be sure these rules have been observed:

  1. You can make a photograph of anything and anyone on any public property, except where a specific law prohibits it. i.e. streets, sidewalks, town squares, parks, government buildings open to the public, and public libraries.
  2. You may shoot on private property if it is open to the public, but you are obligated to stop if the owner requests it. i.e. malls, retail stores, restaurants, banks, and office building lobbies.
  3. Private property owners can prevent photography ON their property, but not photography OF their property from a public location.
  4. Anyone can be photographed without consent when they are in a public place unless there is a reasonable expectation of privacy. i.e. private homes, restrooms, dressing rooms, medical facilities, and phone booths.
  5. Despite common misconceptions, the following subjects are almost always permissible:
    • accidents, fire scenes, criminal activities
    • children, celebrities, law enforcement officers
    • bridges, infrastructure, transportation facilities
    • residential, commercial, and industrial buildings
  6. Security is rarely an acceptable reason for restricting photography. Photographing from a public place cannot infringe on trade secrets, nor is it terrorist activity.
  7. Private parties cannot detain you against your will unless a serious crime was committed in their presence. Those that do so may be subject to criminal and civil charges.
  8. It is a crime for someone to threaten injury, detention, confiscation, or arrest because you are making photographs.
  9. You are not obligated to provide your identity or reason for photographing unless questioned by a law enforcement officer and state law requires it.
  10. Private parties have no right to confiscate your equipment without a court order. Even law enforcement officers must obtain one unless making an arrest. No one can force you to delete photos you have made.

These are general guidelines regarding the right to make photos and should not be interpreted as legal advice. If you need legal help, please contact a lawyer.

Here’s a few more good references on photographer’s rights:

The Photographer’s Right by Bert P. Krages II, attorney at law. PDF Pocket Ref.

Photography & the First Amendment

Know Your Rights: Photographers

Candidates Forum 8-15-12

The Boulder County Candidates Forum – held by PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays of Boulder County, Colorado) at First United Methodist Church in Boulder, CO.

These photos are free to use if attributed “Photo by FreeRangeLongmont.com”

Doug Graham: What’s the connection?

Rightwing loonies attack anything in sightI think it’s terribly cute how the Times-Call tries to pretend it’s a real newspaper then turns around and publishes attack articles about Free Range Longmont. The most recent screed by Doug Graham pretty much calls out by name the entire Progressive community in Longmont and tries to claim FRL is some sort of nefarious ringleader. Hey, I’m delighted to be associated with Progressives – FRL is a progressive publication. And should we play a leading role in things progressive, local or beyond, we wear that badge with great honor and satisfaction. Free Range Longmont was born of the need to counter heavily biased reporting of the Times-Call as well as the Times-Call’s failures to cover information that was not in line with its right-wing agenda.

So sure, FRL is Progressive and we’re PROUD OF IT. Our masthead proclaims it clearly: Progressively Better News.

Not surprisingly, Mr. Graham gets a bit crumbly as he whines about FRL’s moderation policies:

They “nuke” what they don’t like but otherwise reuse, edit and republish your comments as they please, then throw the T-C under the bus implying it encourages libel, which is ironic considering how often members of the “team” submit opinions to the T-C.

Right there, in one line is classic TC distortion. FRL doesn’t “nuke” things “we don’t like” we delete comments that come from fake email addresses, attack our authors or use hate speech of any kind. The Times-Call could benefit from such a policy since their comments are routinely full of anonymous hatred, bile and sometimes just plain incomprehensible lunacy – some of which could be Mr. Graham (wearing a stylish mask provided by TC’s own IT team). Oh, and how dare any of FRL writers use their First Amendment rights to send LTEs to the newspaper. The temerity!!

Free Range Longmont’s ‘ends’ are quite simple: we want to give Longmont the information the T-C tries (and routinely fails *arf*arf*) to suppress and allow the Progressive community in Longmont to have a clear voice in the public square. We want citizens to be able to speak out against the extreme right-wing power base that’s slowly but surely wrecking our home. Lastly we intend to provide that forum without the barrage of lies and libels routinely seen among the T-C comments. Let the rabid right seek and destroy elsewhere.

Doug Graham, VP of IT at MediaNews GroupFree Range Longmont is here and here to stay. Newspapers loss of influence is already well-documented and it’s time for the fishwrap factories and their corporate owners to wake up and realize the game has changed.

There is a “Doug Graham” listed on LinkedIn but he claims he’s ‘never read the Times-Call’ – which is odd since he was IT VP for their parent company. I leave that conundrum for the reader to solve.

Video: The Truth About FRACKING

Saturday, July 7, 2012
2:00 pm – 4:45 pm
Longmont Library, Rooms A & B
409 4th Ave.

Learn about heavy industrial drilling and fracking technology. Hear about the dangers to our health, air, water resources and property values in Longmont.

Presentations by Wes Wilson, retired EPA engineer; Phil Doe, Environmental Issues Director for “Be The Change”; and Shane Davis, research biologist, Sierra Club.

More information at www.LongmontROAR.org

Memorial Day 2012 – A three star family’s tribute

Three stars in our window

Three stars in our window

I was born in 1957 in San Diego, California. My father, George Wray had served in the Armed Forces as did numerous relatives. The Korean war had been over for four years, the Vietnam War was three years away. Eisenhower was President and America was catching her breath and leaning into the race to the future. John F. Kennedy was eyeing the White House.

My childhood memories start when I was four, that’s the earliest I can recall clearly. The town I grew up in, Apollo, was deep in rural Pennsylvania northeast of Pittsburgh; squarely in the middle of the Rust Belt. Allegheny Ludlum’s Vandergrift steel manufacturing plant was still running and nightly ‘slag dumps’ into the Kiskiminetas River were still popular evening entertainment. Cautionary tales by relatives in the steel industry made it clear that men were ‘consumables’ and only the vigiliant and the lucky survived unscathed. At age six I was quite familiar with amputation scars and missing limbs – most of the adults I knew had one or the other. Coal and cargo trains ran regularly and I walked railroad tracks virtually every time my friends and I went hiking. The sound, smell and feeling of huge trains rumbling or roaring by fill my memories of that time. When I saw the movie Stand by Me I could empathize closely with the boys as they crossed a railroad bridge. Memories of the smell and feel of wood, creosote and hot metal come back sharply.

My memories of childhood are also littered with the jingo and propaganda of the Cold War. We heard in school what monsters the Communists were and television brought images of nuclear bomb tests – horrifying that our enemies had such things. More horrifying was the fact that such things existed at all. I was a smart kid (or so my teachers kept telling me); I understood what “10,000,000 degrees Fahrenheit” meant. Hot as the surface of the sun, literally ‘hell on Earth.’ Even as a boy I realized no human being should wield such force and knew without a doubt that if we ever actually used them in earnest, we’d strip this beautiful world down to naked molten rock – a giant slag dump. So I grew up living in fear that one day the madmen ‘running the world’ would go wild and kill us all. I still remember the ‘duck and cover’ drills that I knew abundantly well meant absolutely nothing – there’s no escape from an atomic attack.

My brother in law David Hill served in the Vietnam war. I remember his visits when he finished basic training and before he left to go overseas. When he came home he dealt with PTSD (usually during thunderstorms) and the depression that accompanies it. He died recently of cancer induced by exposure to Agent Orange.

In recent years I lost my wife Marilyn to lymphoma as well as my parents to aneurism and heart failure. Things weren’t going well at all. Then I met my future wife and life started getting better again.

My fiance had four children and had lost her husband to a heart attack triggered by a congenital condition likely caused by prenatal prescription drugs whose effects on mothers and children were not yet known. So death-by-industry was a very personal experience for us both.

When we decided to live together, one of the items she brought with her was a Service Flag with three stars on it- one for each family member serving. It hangs in our front window, slightly lower than our American flag as per tradition. There is no question in our home about ‘honoring the troops’ – those ‘troops’ are our family members.

To all the families in Longmont, Colorado and the rest of the United States who have family serving in the Armed Forces, you have our tribute and our comradeship. When our government decides to send troops or bring them home, we feel as you do – grief or relief since it could mean the loss or rescue of our dearest hearts.

On this day I pay homage to all my family and friends that have served our Nation – as well as the millions of servicemembers and their families. We remember you every day but most especially today – when the United States stops briefly to bow its collective head and say a prayer for the lost and those in harm’s way.

God bless the service families today, we stand with you.

May they all come home soon and may we ‘study war no more.’

Romney visit in Ft. Lupton – Wed. May 9

Taking with both hands

We just received word that former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is making a stop near Fort Lupton tomorrow morning (Wednesday). Romney will reportedly give a speech at an oil drilling facility northwest of town at 10AM.

It’s terribly short notice, but we need you to join us tomorrow morning to counter Romney’s visit.

K P Kauffman Company Inc.
10137 County Road 19, Fort Lupton
Click here for a Google map

For months, Romney and his right-wing allies have claimed that energy production in America is being “held back.” But it’s not true: domestic oil and gas production is actually at its highest level in years, and America even exported refined petroleum products last year.

Rather than calling for responsible development of our natural resources, Romney and his friends in the energy industry are pushing for an irresponsible rollback of environmental and health protections for citizens who live near energy production.

Don’t let Mitt Romney frack our future: join us tomorrow in Fort Lupton.

We’ll have “Romney in the Tank for Big Oil” signs for everyone, or bring your own! And above all, thank you for standing up at a moment’s notice for Colorado’s clean air and water.

Mile High Arrogance

This is what a ‘professional’ at Mile High Skydiving considers funny: sending a community activist* a large-format mailer (source has been verified**):

Large-format envelope, they paid extra for this middle finger.

containing a low-grade laserprinted color poster:

I don't find this admirable at all - it's crude and high-school childish.


and a crude, cheaply-made bumper sticker:

When will this one land on Airport Road?


Nothing says ‘little town’ more viciously than immature thugs with money and idle time.

The thing is, they seem to spend their time and money (but not much) doing ‘pranks’*** when they really need to be working more on their safety record:

I have to say, from a personal point of view, this information does not inspire respect in me.

In fact, something like this, in my opinion, has the aspect of an upraised middle finger.

Longmont, every time you hear that loud droning remember: you “love airplane noise.

Get used to more of it.

All the time.

Every day.

And night.

*  Who’s fighting a nuisance his business is creating. Oh, and the members of the organization – all homeowners.

** Mile High’s management gleefully admitted to doing it in an article in the Longmont Times-Call.

*** That I suspect nearly no one finds funny. It’s in the same class as soaping car windows and flaming bags of poop on doorsteps.

Call it what it is: Sedition

President Barack Obama

A recent letter to the Times-Call proves (again) that the ‘editor’ has no concept of what’s protected speech and what’s sedition. A common problem for right-wing ‘news’papers.

In ‘Criminal in the White House‘ Ron Klein of Berthoud states in regard to our President:

“He needs to be removed, prosecuted and punished under the law.”

Removed“? Really? How so?

I’ve noticed the chest-puffing blowhards always dance around this point, knowing full well the penalty that would occur if they came right out and voiced their secret desires.

Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about Sedition:

Sedition often includes subversion of a constitution and incitement of discontent (or resistance) to lawful authority.

Typically, sedition is considered a subversive act

The difference between sedition and treason consists primarily in the subjective ultimate object of the violation to the public peace.

So the purpose of sedition is to incite discontent (or resistance) to lawful authority.

What it boils right down to is that the birthers, like angry un-potty-trained children, absolutely refuse to obey the law. Like an angry child in a poopy diaper they only manage to smear it everywhere and disgust everyone with the filth and stench.

To quote David Brown from his hate-rant, “No, there will never be “enough” and with that he neatly sums up the birther movement – “never enough” – these are partisans so dead-set on getting their way that they would tear down the country and use the bricks for weapons.

Contrary to Mr. Brown’s lies, “the left” is not trying to surpress free speech – if the right wants Obama impeached, go right ahead and prate for that all you like. That’s the legal method. What we’re sick of hearing are the barely-veiled calls for violence and insurrection with the calls for him to be “removed” – make no mistake, force is implied by the use of that word.

For the Times-Call to publish such violent anti-American jingo is dismaying at least and proves again that there is still a lingering cancer that has tendrils throughout the organization.

Longmont deserves better.

Heroes of the GOP

From AmericaBlog:

Aging former rock star, Ted Nugent, recently endorsed Mitt Romney for president.  Two weeks agoRomney’s son Tagg had this to say about Nugent’s endorsement.

Does Tagg Romney think it was cool and great when Ted Nugent called Barack Obama a “piece of sh*t,” and when he called Hillary Clinton a “b*tch”, during the 2008 campaign – while waving two machine guns in the air?  Here’s what Nugent said at the time (video):

“I was in Chicago last week.  I said, hey Obama, you might want to suck on one of these, you punk [holds up two machine guns].  Obama, he’s a piece of sh*t, and I told him to suck on my machine gun.  Let’s hear for it.  I said Hillary, you might want to ride one of these into the sunset, you worthless b*tch?

Nugent had more violent rhetoric about President Obama this week, after having endorsed Mitt Romney for President.  The Secret Service doesn’t appear amused.

Read the rest at AmericaBlog.

Charles "Russ" Russel Lyman - GOP HD 12 candidate

Charles "Russ" Russel Lyman - GOP HD 12 candidate

Wow. The campaign hasn’t even started and the wild-eyed gun rhetoric is on 11.

I suppose it’s to be expected – hard line GOP partisans know it will take a virtual miracle1 to get Romney elected and that has got to be pissing them off… badly.

They’ve had to listen to years of those DFHs bad-mouthing their ‘mission leader’ (Dubya) while a… a… (whisper) (censored) was in their White House. Even the oft-summoned spirit of Saint Ronnie the Tax-Fighter was no help, in fact he was an embarrassment to the Tea Party. The once-proud lockstepping Grand Old Party was splintering like cheap patio furniture in a hillbilly family brawl.

So it makes sense they’d turn to their (ahem) spiritual leaders… and if anyone’s consumed more spirits than ole’ Uncle Ted I don’t know who it is. One thing’s for sure though, Teddy Bare Nugent is a perfect symbol of today’s GOP electorate: clueless, hateful, crazy and armed to the teeth.

Something tells me we’re going to be seeing a lot more of folks like Teddy – on Fox ‘News,’ at rallies and GOP Assemblies… and on posters… and YouTube videos… etc, etc, etc.

Boulder County was truly lucky to see one of the very first emergences of ‘grass roots’ GOP heroes – the Colorado Statesman reported on just one such firebrand: Charles “Russ” Lyman. When I read the article I was shocked2 not to find a photograph of this charismatic powerhouse that “…brought the crowd to its feet…” so I made it my business to locate this beacon of GOP hope.

When he mounted the lectern3, suddenly I started to feel some of that magic – or it might just have been my breakfast burrito doing a rerun.

Good luck Mr. Lyman – the hopes and prayers of the Boulder County GOP clearly go with you. May the spirit of the Motor City Madman show you the way.

1. You know, like the golden plates… that were returned to an angel.

2. Shocked I tell you!!

3. It was perhaps that very turn of phrase that called forth the spirit of my burrito.