It was Spring Break here in Missoula and that was a large contributor to my struggles.
For others, it was the political atmosphere.
We’ll get into all of it in this post.
On the Radio Again
It’ll be tomorrow morning – Monday, April 11 – at 9 AM.
It’s on KGVO Newstalk and you can listen live online.
Sorry for the late notice, but that’s often how things are. Actually, they wanted to get me on there on Friday but my son Paul was sick.
So I’ll be on tomorrow and we’ll be talking about…Bigfoot.
Yes, Bigfoot or Sasquatch or whatever you want to call it. For the most part, we’ll discuss the 1892 Bauman Story, or what I call the Bitterroot Mountains Sighting in my book.
That book is Paranormal Montana and you can get it on Amazon or iTunes or Barnes & Noble…plus a few more.
The story we’ll discuss was told to President Teddy Roosevelt when he was living in the area.
Perhaps we’ll get into some other Teddy Roosevelt Montana stories, such as his 1884 Wibaux bar fight.
It should be a fun hour on the radio and I hope you can give a listen.
Caring for Children
I was watching him all week while his mom took a much-needed vacation to New York.
Paul went to MisMo for a few days and had a blast.
Besides that, I took care of him in the afternoon and evenings and boy, it was tough at times.
Raising kids is hard, and lots of families have it hard. Childcare costs are through the roof it seems and this leaves parents stressed.
I’m very lucky and blessed to have a healthy kid that’s smart and well-behaved.
I got through my week and we had a lot of fun for the most part. Sure, there were some ups and downs…but when are there not?
Nonetheless, I’m glad my wife is back and I appreciate what she does a lot more.
The Money from the Williams Dinner
For the most part, we have more information on finances but more questions as well.
I got into a back and forth on Facebook with Pam Walzer today about this. I posted the full comment on Friday’s post, but for the most part things go like this:
- Missoula Democrats “do not have the exact same numbers” for money raised and money spent.
- I was told that this information was on the Commissioner of Political Practices (COPP) page, but I wasn’t told exactly what to type in to find it.
- The $19,738.87 raised in 2014 is not in question.
- The $11,668.35 cost of the 2014 event is also not in question.
- That left $8,072.52, and $7,800 of that was given to candidates.
How that $7,800 in candidate giving breaks down is like so:
- MDLCC: $3,500
- John Lewis: $600
- Amanda Curtis: $600
- Cola Rowley: $800
- T.J. McDermott: $800
- Dave Strohmaier: $500
- Andrew Person: $500
- Bill Geer: $500
Now, for the MDLCC money, that was used to rent the office that staffers used to make calls, recruit volunteers, and do other Get Out The Vote (GOTV) types of things.
I think that’s justified.
Actually, all the costs are justified.
Personally, I feel not enough is going to the candidates, however, and a big reason for this are the expenses of putting on the event.
I was told that “the cost of a sit-down banquet dinner in Missoula runs between $40 and $45 per plate,” and that’s “if you include the ‘extras’ like PA equipment, advertising/invitations.”
My, those extras sure run a lot.
My main question is, why are expenses out of control?
You’ll remember my own expense analysis for my business in my first monthly report of this year.
I found that expenses were prohibitively high, eating into my profits and causing me unneeded stress.
For the Williams Dinner, 59% of the money raised is taken up by expenses.
This leaves just $8,000 to go to candidates.
We have a case where just some candidates get money, others don't get any support.
It doesn’t have to be this way!
“The decisions on what to give to whom was by vote of the Central Committee,” I was told, and I imagine the Central Committee can reduce the event costs as well.
I hope that happens.
Terrible Tribal Housing
The subtitle tells us that 40% of “on-reservation housing in the United States is considered substandard.”
Something that’s in the long article is a discussion on row-houses vs. pockets of housing here and there.
The former destroys tribal family traditions while the latter fosters them.
The problems can be traced back to the 1980s but the solutions will need to be found in the late-2010s.
Please, national Democrats, instead of just paying lip service to the tribes every couple of years, try to actually help them.
I expect Senator Tester will get a little vocal about this when he gets the chance.
I’m not expecting much from Zinke, though Daines might pipe-up. It’s of course a great issue for Denise Juneau to play up.
Angela McLean was very active in bringing native issues to light as well.
All in all, I hope we see some discussion on this. I hope we see more stories in the paper. I hope it’s not just forgotten after this article.
The Marijuana Divide
Currently we have CI-115 and I-178. Both will legalize and tax marijuana.
On the other side we have the medical marijuana community and their initiative, which will be done by April 18 (it's hoped).
Both camps are working to gather signatures and they have 9 weeks to do this (the deadline is June 17).
Right now the legalization movement is out of money and losing hope, despite having dozens if not hundreds of people going around their local areas to get signatures.
The medical movement has tens of thousands of dollars, a lobbyist, a marketing firm, and a statewide organization.
Despite this, they are behind the legalization effort.
This has created animosity toward the legalization folks. The legalization folks have animosity toward the medical folks as well.
Mainly, legalization feels they need support. They have a viable initiative now, and with the help of MTCIA’s resources they could get it done.
But that help will not come…at least at this point.
If the initiative is approved by Tim Fox on April 18 then it will never come.
There will be two competing marijuana initiatives, medical and legalization.
I don’t have a sunny outlook for either at this point, mainly because of the infighting.
You can read all about that infighting in a Facebook group called The Patients’ Voice.
Hundreds if not thousands of medical marijuana patients have already lost their provider, many have had their prescription card expire.
It’s a sad situation, and meanwhile Montana Democrats remain on the sidelines (we know the MT GOP isn’t worth shit in this fight).
It’s sad, and again, I’ve lost a lot of hope.
Maybe I just need to get my ass down to the library and check out Montana Place Names from A-Z.
I think that book might answer my question, which is what is the old brick electrical station on I-90 between Missoula and Butte?
Loyal readers know well my quest for old knowledge about old places.
- There was the time we looked into the old orphanage out on North Montana Avenue in Helena.
- One time we looked at the history of Jim Darcy School.
- We took at look at the history of the Benton Avenue Cemetery in Helena once.
So if you know a bit about that place, or some other interesting places you see while driving on the highway, let me know.
I say this because the technician at a local Jiffy Lube here in Missoula told me I might have gotten some bad gas.
He said that because he could find no real reason why my “check engine” light had come on two weeks ago.
It happened while going up the west side of MacDonald Pass into Helena.
The car ran just fine after that and then on Friday during an oil change I got it checked out, the light turned off.
Today coming back from Helena, however, the damn light came on again, this time going up the east side of the pass.
Hell’s Bells – I dunno what I’m gonna do.
Anyone else having strange car troubles? The comments are open.