(’76 Contributor) On Feb. 23 I had the opportunity to testify before the House Committee on Finance, Colorado General Assembly, in support of HB 10-1296, sponsored by Representative Spencer Swalm and Senator Josh Penry. Joining me to testify in support of the bill were Jacque Graham, Principal at Inner City School and Theresa Gallegos, whose child benefits from an ACE scholarship. The idea behind HB 1296 came from former U.S. Senator Hank Brown, and it would provide low-income families with an annual $1,000 tax credit for enrolling their child in a private school. The bill would also provide a grant of $1,000 to any public school that loses a student to a private school as a consequence of the tax credit.
(’76 Editor) A man in Denver, call him Jim, emailed me in connection with our Feb. 17 debate on medical marijuana and potential legalization of the drug. His comments speak for themselves: I was hoping to make it to the debate but couldn’t. I did want to share with you some thoughts on the topic of discussion. I was addicted to drugs for 15 years. Though marijuana was the least harmful drug it lead to harder drugs. People like to say that it is only “habit forming” which is part of the lie that addicts buy into. All addictions are based on the addicted person convincing him/her self into a lie that what they are doing is “OK”. It is a lie.
(CCU Faculty) This week, The Centennial Institute hosted a debate on the question of whether, and to what degree, marijuana should be legalized in the state of Colorado. This is obviously a very important issue and extremely relevant. The Colorado legislature is currently attempting to deal with the continuing issue of how best to administer its current medicinal marijuana law. During the Centennial Institute debate, the libertarian position favoring the easing of restrictions and possibly outright full legalization continued to surface. At the root of this argument is a belief that people should be able to make choices for themselves, without government restriction.
(’76 Editor) Since our big debate on Colorado drug policy, Feb. 17 at CCU, I’ve been repeatedly asked who won or what conclusion emerged. There’s no simple answer in light of the cross-cutting perspectives from our five debaters – legislators Shawn Mitchell and Tom Massey, psychiatrist Chris Thurstone, and attorneys Carol Chambers (opposed to outright legalization of marijuana) and Jessica Corry (in favor of same) – and the three-layer complexity of the subject.
(Denver Post, Feb. 21) Mobilize the militia. Fire up the Humvee. Get down the musket off the mantelpiece. Boulder is preparing to invade Colorado. Yes, a lawyer from up in the progressive paradise says that your right to vote on taxes violates his constitutional entitlement to ever-increasing teacher salaries and NEA indoctrination of our kids. The invasion is no joke, because Herbert Fenster is a legal heavyweight and his intended enforcer is a robed priesthood answerable to no one. TABOR could be in trouble.
(’76 Editor) Two important articles published recently, along with a classic from the early Reagan years, remind us how deep and grave are the pathologies threatening American self-government—and map out the fundamental change of thinking we must achieve as conservatives if our country is not to go the way of Rome or Britain. Contemporary writers Jeff Bergner and Matthew Spalding in recent weeks have echoed the insights of Stan Evans, Bill Buckley’s compatriot in the 1980s, warning that the fateful options we face are to understand the soul of America either as unlimited government seeking a coercive utopia (the liberal or progressive vision), or as limited government wherein freely choosing individuals can order their own lives (the Founders’ vision).
(CCU Faculty) The other day, Vincent Carroll of the Denver Post took Congressman Jared Polis to task for his hypocrisy regarding free speech. Polis has strongly criticized the recent Supreme Court decision rolling back restrictions on corporate speech accusing the latter of using their resources to “confuse and trick people.” Carroll pointed out that Polis is fine with using his considerable private wealth to, I assume, “confuse and trick people” since that’s what money is for.
(CCU Faculty) In 1960 at Sharon, Connecticut, home of the modern conservative movement’s leader William F. Buckley, the Young Americans for Freedom issued the Sharon Statement declaring the following core beliefs of young conservatives: THAT foremost among the transcendent values is the individual’s use of his God-given free will, whence derives his right to be free from the restrictions of arbitrary force;
(’76 Contributor) It seems to me that in spite of the near-paralysis of government at all levels on meaningful reforms for health care, our runaway costs need someone’s attention. Fewer and fewer small businesses can now afford anything but an insurance package that has a huge deductible. So as a totally inexperienced drafter of such proposals, but with my share of business experience in the real world, I am so bold as to offer the following simple start:
(Centennial Fellow) In the classic musical My Fair Lady, Professor Henry Higgins plaintively asks “Why can’t a Woman be more like a Man?” Similarly Americans perpetually wonder “Why can’t other countries be more like us?” A case in point is our current relations with China which to American eyes seems willfully stubborn in its refusal to cooperate on sanctions against Iran. Similarly China seems inexplicably furious over the U.S. decision to sell six billion dollars worth of new weapons to Taiwan. Add to this China’s recent dire warnings against any U.S. officials meeting with the Dalai Lama.