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July 18, 2015



I can't help thinking of Larry Kralj when I read this, someone that commented all the time on that site until about a year ago, when he got banned. I kind of miss him, but a lot of people felt getting rid of those comments was a good thing.

I think you really bring up some good points, and those are who gets to speak and who doesn't. I was also thinking tonight about Montana Democratic leadership, and I was comparing and contrasting the leadership of the two parties during the last session.

GOP leadership was young. In the House you had some young people in key positions. For the Dems, it's not the case. Dems are much more 'wait in line,' while the GOP is more 'damn son, if you can do it, go right ahead!'

Maybe there's more ego in the Democrats. I heard a good one a few months back. Ego = edging out God. Democrats would never consider that quote, however, which I believe might have come from Dave Ramsey. But that's on Fox radio, so it's a no-no.

Alas, what can be done? Gianforte gave us the perfect map to follow to re-energize our far-flung precincts, but Keenan has done nothing. I've said before that her leadership is no good right now, but maybe I'm wrong. She's an old woman that feels her time has come, even though it's passed long ago. Remind you of anyone?

I'm afraid Democrats will turn off a lot this year, meaning turnout will be low. People are not excited about Hillary! Well, old women are, but that's about it.


I've noticed at least 5 times in the last several months folks at that website embracing arguments that aren't just poorly considered, but downright counter-productive. Conservative arguments, arguments that the Republicants, both factions, use to beat progressives over the head with, to electoral defeat. And they do so in the name of being personally 'right' as opposed to being right for Montana or the people of Montana.

No offense meant, but there are times I do not like your arguments either in style or content, the Ad Hominem about old women being one of them. But when examining what you say in a discussion the last thing I care about is your 'tone' or your 'station'. If you have a good point to make it should be heard, and frequently you do. It does no one any favors to see those points are lost in a sea of Ad Hominem and dismissal. One of the true power-houses in the Democratic party is Ellie Hill. To see her treated so shabbily at Cowgirl made my brain hurt, treated such by people who claim themselves the great defenders of progressive democratic values.


how was Hill treated shabbily at Cowgirl? I must have missed that. good to see you writing more, added you to the blogroll for what it's worth.


Thank you, Lizard. A Brahman, untouchable due to status, posted about how we must favor local regulation due to the weakening of federal legislation, effectively arguing that we must distrust federal pre-emption. Not a bad idea as far as it goes, but those of us familiar with the tactics of Racicot, Fred Thomas and Goldman Sachs have seen this before in energy legislation. Devide and conquer, based on weak state's right claim. The protected argued that Hill was being bought by corporatists, never bothering to ask why Ellie Hill favored allowing Uber into Montana. At the risk of offense, I asked you why you hadn't as well and receivied no response.

Whether one agrees with the response Ellie Hill posted, that Missoula was being poorly served by inadequate taxi service, it was out of line to accuse her of being bought and payed for by ALEC and the coporazi. That is precisely what Norma did, because Norma was defending her lively-hood as a taxi service. I don't have a problem with that, per se. What I do have a problem with is this: Angrily, stupidly, petulantly identifying enemies in every personal corner is precisely the problem that democrats have. It is not democratic. It is not a winning scenario. I realize that many on the farther left are convinced that I am some kind of enemy, but in most respects they make the same damned mistake. The point of the democratic ideal is to listen to others, as opposed to thinking about what you have to say to shut those others up.

That latter is exactly how Ellie Hill was treated at Cowgirl. It was pretty damned shabby. And she's not the only one.


I didn't try to talk to Rep. Hill because that would be a waste of time. there are a few people who know better than to trust anything she would say. I'm one of them.

that said, I don't think she was "paid off" to carry water for Uber. I think she truly understands the need for more choices for a ride at 2am on a Saturday night.


I'm glad Ellie Hill helped bring new taxi service to Missoula - we need it (from what I hear, I don't use it as a bike would be faster). There were some pretty bad comments from a former Missoula taxi driver on the Independent last week.

I'm certain that in the long-run, those Uber drivers will lose out. Is that Hill's fault? I don't think so. I also don't think it's her fault that many might not be able to serve as drivers, as I believe your car needs to be 2010 or newer. But if it gives more options to consumers, that's great - Democrats should be doing that!

Democrats should also be focusing on unions. The AFL-CIO meeting a month or so ago at the hot springs was…drab. I'll say drab. They need more people! We need to get our tourism industry unionized.

I also feel talking about the big banking hold on Montana Democrats is long overdue. Infrastructure is great, but spending all that interest money, $67 million by my calculations, and when we have money in the bank? Please.

The two main Democratic blogs of the state decry our lack of discussion and the voices in the media, but when other blogs discuss these things, they shy away, pretend they don't notice, or worse, block you. How is that getting at transparency and inclusiveness? I don't know. Things are pretty messed up.


Slightly off topic but timely:

Greg, it isn't going to do anyone any good if you get yourself banned at Cowgirl. An anecdote to clarify my meaning, many years ago when I actually agreed with much of what Norma had to write, I politely pointed out that as a candidate for office she might want to consider getting an editor. Her response was, and I quote "fuck off and get a life" This was a candidate responding to a supporter, most of whose family lived in her district. Since that time she has decreed that I am a racist, a sexist, a bully, a fake democrat, a liar about my own life and a troll.

This is the person that website has embraced. Arguing about her writing skills or lack thereof will get you banned. I know you're right, you know you're right, hell even MT Cartman Intemperance probably knows that you're right. But their decision has been made and MT Intemperance has authority issues about seeming week, or even contemplative. I reiterate, getting yourself banned there will do no one any good at all.

Big Swede

It's because MT Democrats are more conservative than the National Democratic Party which because of technology pulls local candidates further to the left.

And the fact that MT Dems are more apt to hold their representatives more accountable.

For instance an IL Dem would continually vote Blue regardless of this.

"A new study released Tuesday reveals that the poverty rates among American children have risen under the Obama Administration, especially African-American, American Indian, and Latino children.

The study from the Annie E. Casey Foundation showed poverty rates among all children have grown since 2008, when the rate was 18%; the rate increased to 22% by 2013. The report indicated particularly bleak news for African-American, American Indian, and Latino children, stating, “On nearly all of the measures that [it] track[s], African-American, American Indian and Latino children continued to experience negative outcomes at rates that were higher than the national average.” -William Bigelow

A MT Dem may not blindly support non-effective leadership.


Oh, I'm sure I'll be banned at MT Cowgirl eventually. Not sure who runs that, but maybe the recent trend of posting fountain fluff is just a way to weed out all the undesirables. Make them say outrageous things in the comments so there's justification to rid 'ourselves' of them.

I dunno, Norma Duffy seems like she has some good ideas, but I don't think those ideas will ever see fruition - she can't get elected. When you get into a rut like that you usually stay there, and since she and many other MT Democrats are so old, I doubt they'll be learning new tricks. They definitely won't change.

The main problem that Montana has is a lack of good jobs. What jobs we do have pay a lot less than other places. We're all taught to believe this is justified since we live in such a wonderful place. So take what you're given and be thankful. The top blogs of the state, and the state newspapers, all perpetuate this. They never report on our lack of jobs and they never put out ideas on how we can get better jobs. I suppose any idea there is will be shot down anyways, as infringing on some fringe group.

If people in this state were making more money, I doubt they'd bitch as much. Economic times are bad, and Montanans have their pride stolen by asking for help all the time. We depend on government too much because our government won't help get good jobs here. I guess the Helena bureaucrats get to skim some off the top of all the federal dole money. So having more people poor benefits them, keeps them in a jobs.

Terrible cycle.

Craig Moore

Greg, check out trucking jobs. http://www.truckingtruth.com/jobs/jobs-Montana.php

Craig Moore

Also check out the Helena tech jobs. http://chj.tbe.taleo.net/chj06/ats/careers/searchResults.jsp;jsessionid=8FF23FE543C25CA920A6594730268C8D?org=MTHIGHTECH&cws=1

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