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Like I Was Saying

Like I Was Saying

Don’t Blame Paul

The eyes of much of the country, especially party insiders, last week were fixed on the GOP convention, for the rollout of vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin and on John McCain’s acceptance speech. Yet just a few days earlier in the town next door, thousands booed Republicans as loud as Democrats. Ron Paul supporters gathered […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Schweitzer’s DNC Coronation

On the second day of a Democratic convention that even party loyalists had panned as dull, a sweating Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer took the podium. He yelled, waved his arms and brought a previously unenthused audience to its feet. He slammed the Bush administration’s energy policy while tying it to that of presumptive Republican nominee […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

With Tax Law, State Micromanages Cities

City budgets across the state are in such dire straits that those in the unenviable position of managing municipal money have joked amongst themselves about which one will go bankrupt first. While not funny “ha! ha!” it is, perhaps, a way to lighten the mood when staring down untenable numbers. Right now, it appears Billings […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Conservation in Moderation

When a Beacon reporter called planners in other Montana counties to get their perspective on conservation easements and a November initiative to preserve land in the Flathead, some were taken aback. They were likely surprised it was approved for the ballot at all, assuming that preserving land is not a priority here and that the […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Banking on Apathy

The problem with Kalispell’s proposed parks district is the fact that it’s not really a proposal. The only way the public can stop it is if 50 percent of the property owners in the city protest its creation. The council would have done better not soliciting our input at all. Turnout in anything other than […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Whitefish Sign Law Encouraging Blandness

The hammer that is the Whitefish sign ordinance is, once again, swinging wildly. This time, no real lives are in danger – just a rosy mural on the side of a local café – a sharp contrast to a previous kerfuffle involving the dubious law. Then, North Valley Hospital officials had to convince the city […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Race Issues in ‘Fly-Over’ Country

The thorny issue of race recently surfaced on a national and local level. From a controversial national magazine cover to local assault accusations, it turns out there is little consensus on how to confront a topic that makes the media and its audience squirm. For this newspaper, the grappling began after we posted on our […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

This Bud’s From Who?

Amid a creaky economy Congress has found a convenient scapegoat: foreign companies landing American contracts and scheming to take over our iconic brands. First, the Air Force awarded a deal to build refueling tankers to Airbus, a European company, instead of U.S.-based Boeing. And now foreigners are going after our beer. The prospect of Belgium’s […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Library Bogged Down by Bureaucracy

The Flathead County Library Board of Trustees met last month and once again failed to make a decision, or even indicate a possible plan, on the future of the Kalispell library. Meanwhile, the abandoned Tidyman’s grocery store near downtown here continues to rot, its 52,000 square feet eager for books – or anything else to […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Two Bad Debate Offers

Republican gubernatorial candidate Roy Brown, succumbing to political saber rattling, challenged Gov. Brian Schweitzer to 18 debates. While Brown is doing what challengers do, shooting for the moon in an effort to put himself in front of voters while spending little money, the Democratic incumbent’s counteroffer was highly disappointing. Schweitzer wants to have five debates […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Infighting Under the GOP’s ‘Big Tent’

During the opening reception at the Montana Republican convention last week, party chairman Erik Iverson called for unity. With continued infighting over which ideological direction his party is heading, it’s a lofty goal and one that he must approach delicately. How Republicans fare in the November elections may depend upon Iverson’s ability to appease different […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

Checks Well Spent

Detractors of Pres. Bush’s stimulus plan were forced to momentarily mute their criticism last week when retail sales posted a bigger-than-expected gain. It turns out that the 57 million Americans who have so far received their checks chose to spend them wildly. Some economists had predicted the opposite; that the majority of Americans would opt […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

The Upsets are Over

One is a perennial political loser who has run at least 16 times prior for various offices, winning just once, and whom the GOP establishment is loath to support. The other is a politically aloof afterthought who filed for office at the last minute, is reluctant to campaign or raise any kind of money and […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

NRA, Schweitzer Embrace Awkwardly

The National Rifle Association endorsed incumbent Democratic Gov. Brian Schweitzer last week, which forced him, for a day anyway, to wobble on his previous stated position that the organization is nothing more than a “fully-owned division of the Republican Party.” That’s what happens when the swirling political winds change direction. Not long ago, on April […]

By Kellyn Brown
Like I Was Saying

The Beacon, One Year In …

About three months after we began printing the Flathead Beacon, a grizzled man gripping a copy of our latest edition entered our Main Street office. Calmly, but directly, he asked me, “Are you ignorant or something?” I replied as best I could that I wasn’t, which then began a long conversation about the lack of […]

By Kellyn Brown

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