I guess it’s that time of year.
Yep, the time when we look back at what’s been said and done.
After months of perspective, most of the issues that we were ‘up in arms’ about earlier in the year seem rather quaint and unimportant.
Let’s try to avoid those posts.
Instead I’m going to focus on posts that are still timely, with information that’s still relevant. Most of these posts still point to glaring problems…problems that should cut across party lines.
Alas, this is America and we just don’t think like that anymore.
What I’m going to do is give you at least one post from each month of the year, with a small excerpt to get you started.
My main goal is to give you interesting posts that you still want to read, not posts that are focused on yesterday’s issues or candidates.
In other words, let’s avoid things you don’t care about now…and probably didn’t care about then.
Shouldn't be too hard - I put up 163 posts on this Montana blog this past year, or about 13 a month. Still, I found just 19 posts that are worth your time today.
Hope you get some useful information.
Images from the 2018 Women’s March in Missoula
“The Facebook event page for the 2018 Women’s March in Missoula lists 893 people as going, with another 786 interested.”
Heenan and Kier are Following the Usual Losing Strategy
“The two leading U.S. House campaigns are currently using the same tired old marketing and consulting firms, still wasting too much money on payroll, and they’re paying the same kinds of ‘professional’ political operatives that have worked on failed U.S. House campaigns in the past.”
A Rosy Picture of America
“High School seniors are smoking cigarettes less, with 28.3% doing so in 2016 and 26.6% doing so in 2017.”
10 Ideas for Montana Candidates
“And don’t worry about attacks or what people are saying about you – hardly anyone outside their little groups gives a shit.”
A Little Irish in Montana
“By the time the 1930 Census came out, Montana had 17,940 people of Irish descent…or 7.7% of the state.”
Who Benefits from Montana Farm Subsidies?
“The federal government usually hands out $25 billion to farmers each year in the form of subsidies, with 85% of that money going to the largest 15% of farm businesses.”
Montana Tourism Stats
“Glacier National Park had 80,000 overnight camping stays in July 2016, or an average of 2,667 a night for the Park’s 1,014 campsites. ‘The campgrounds were effectively booked across the board,’ officials told us.”
Steve Bullock’s 2020 Timeline
“On March 3 it’s Super Tuesday, with twelve states or territories voting. Big ones will be California, Colorado, Minnesota, Texas, and Virginia.”
What’s Happening in the Bedroom?
“Singles are having sex 59 times a year compared to the 55 times married couples do it.”
Does Teen Anti-Depressant Use Cause More School Shootings?
“150,000 kids were taking stimulants for ADHD in the 1970s, but by 2014 a whopping 4.3 million kids were on them, accounting for a 2,766% increase.”
We’re Ignoring the Root Cause of the Border Crisis
“In 2001 the Taliban had reduced opium production to near-zero, effectively wiping out 75% of the world’s supply. Then came 17 years of American rule there, and opium production shot up to a record high in 2017.”
A Look at Missoula’s Reserve Street Homeless Camp
“Mel told me that before the flooding came, around 75 to 100 people were living in the camp. Now he figures it’s around 25 to 35.”
Missoula Spends $8 Million in 2 Weeks (With Another $15 Million in Bonding to Come)
“Between 2005 and 2017 taxes in Missoula went up by 94%.”
Which Montana Party will Jump on the Legalization Bandwagon First?
“In 2017, legal marijuana sales totaled $9.7 billion in the US, which is a 33% increase from the previous year.”
How to Beat Missoula’s Liberal City Council
“First, if you’re running in a competitive race you’ll need to raise anywhere from $4,000 to $8,000 or more.”
57% of Montanans Have Nothing Saved for Retirement
“After all, we know that just 3% of workers aged 65 or older were in the workforce in 2000. Today 12.4% of seniors are working.”
How ‘Bout that Economy?!?
“Currently P/E ratios are out of control, with the stock market capitalization to national GDP ratio at 33. This means that the stock market share prices are trading 33 times higher than what the company’s market values really are. Back before the Great Depression started, the number was 32.”
Pegasus Mine Cleanup Costs and Your Money
“By March 1998 Pegasus announced that they couldn’t pay their Montana property taxes. It amounted to a lot of money – the year’s bill totaled $1.27 million, all earmarked for Jefferson County. At the end of March, however, Pegasus asked a Nevada court to allow it to ‘pay 26 of its top executives more than $5 million in bonuses and severance pay.’”
Early Takeaways from Last Night
“I don’t expect Democrats nationally or in Montana to look at themselves after this election, wondering what went wrong. They surely won’t talk about it. I mean…they didn’t after the losses in 2016, and here in Montana they didn’t after they lost in 2017.
Democrats in Montana actually thought the body slam incident would hurt Gianforte. He got more votes than anyone else in the state last night, and he won more than he did by in 2017.
Dems really need to figure out a new playbook, but they won’t. This is really good for the GOP here.”
December and Beyond
I don’t have any interesting posts from December to share with you, and I’m not sure I’ll have anything for you in January.
I’ve been writing on this site since March 2013, yet I’m plum-out of ideas.
Worse, when I do decide to write something, it’s usually forced and boring and you know it. With the near-total collapse of our media in Montana – and the insistence of the national media to do little more than talk about Trump all the time – there’s very little in the news for me to write about.
Perhaps that’ll change when the legislature starts up. Still, what the legislature does or doesn’t do…well, it doesn’t affect me much. I don’t pay property taxes, after all…and despite the argument that my rent will go up if taxes do, I haven’t seen a rent increase in three years.
But I still like the idea of providing some kind of check on what these political clowns are doing, although I don’t think it has much impact at all.
Most of these politicians – and their hangers-on – already have their minds made up. If they don’t, those in their party will pressure them to go a certain way.
What I say or what anyone else on a blog or in a media report says…well, it doesn’t really matter.
So while I could write about the upcoming legislature, I just don’t think it’ll sway your thinking or those in office.
Maybe I’m wrong on that. But I don’t think so.
And boy, the coverage of the 2019 session is going to be abysmal – already is. The only thing I see on the media’s radar so far is the possibility of a state rock and roll song.
God help us if this is the only thing we’re talking about right now, with about a week to go until the shit show comes to Helena.
Well, it’s not – legislators are also clamoring for a raise. Currently the nearly $200 a day they get in pay and benefits isn’t enough, not to mention their free healthcare for 2 years…even though they ‘work’ but 4 months.
God those legislators make me sick.
And that’s a big reason I don’t want to write about ‘em – they’re full of shit.
Try to have a good New Year.