by Pete Talbot

(Jhwygirl beat me to the draw, as usual, but here’s my perspective on some of her Various & Sundry observations, plus some other stuff.  Also, I changed my original Denny Rehberg headline (a strike through wouldn’t cut it) because it lacked class.  And while I have no respect for the man, I still have some for the office.)

Disingenuous Denny

I had forgotten that Rep. Denny Rehberg was going to be the speaker at Missoula’s City Club luncheon on Thursday.  I didn’t miss much, though, according to the Missoulian.  The same old: lower taxes, cut programs, reduce regulation.  Then there was this gem:

He also claimed that family planning services were losing billions of dollars by duplication between Medicaid and Title X services.

Missoula Planned Parenthood volunteer coordinator Tannis Hargrove, who asked about the family planning spending, disputed Rehberg’s duplication claim. She said Title X services were not available to Montanans eligible for Medicaid, and that Medicaid eligibility was too strict to allow that kind of double-dipping.

Rehberg also said it was the fault of the federal government that the housing market collapsed, leading to the Great Recession.  It had nothing to do with the credit default swaps of JPMorgan, Lehman Brothers, AIG, Goldman-Sachs, etc.  Thank God those markets aren’t better regulated.

And you can blame those pesky regulations for your $4-a-gallon gas.  That’s what’s keeping the petroleum industry from modernizing its gasoline infrastructure, which is keeping consumer gas prices high, says Denny.  I guess it’s hard to invest in new infrastructure when your first quarter profits are only $10.7 billion.

The rest of the Rehberg story is here.  Read it and weep.  KECI also has a story but I’m boycotting NBC because of that stupid Celebrity Apprentice show, which leads me to …

Rob Trump, Donald Natelson?

I like things easy and Rob Natelson makes finding a topic to post so easy.  This time, he’s picking up where The Donald left off. Couched in some historical nonsense about the English monarchy, Rob’s worried that a U.S. President could hand our country over to some foreign power.  I’m pretty sure he’s targeting Obama and the President’s penchant for all things Kenyan.  I’m surprised he didn’t raise this issue about Reagan’s Mexican proclivities.  He should also be worried about Gov. Schwarzenegger selling California to Austria.  There are just too many examples to cite. Be afraid, be very afraid.

“Extremely far-right extremists”

That’s a quote from former Sanders County Republican Chairman Mike Hashisaki.  But it looks like it’s the extremists who are running things now that state party chairman Will Deschamps says the new Sanders County Republican Central Committee will be certified at the Montana GOP convention in June.  How far to the right is the new committee?  Well, Denny Rehberg is a socialist.  According to the Missoulian:

The convention then chose Katy French of Paradise chairwoman. Her husband Mark, who unsuccessfully challenged U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg for the Republican nomination to Congress in 2010 – charging that Rehberg had backed “irresponsible, unconstitutional and socialist issues” – was elected state committeeman.

It was the worst of times, it was the worst of times.

I guess the 62nd Montana Legislature could have been worse, but not much.  One of the major disappointments for me — the failure to pass a bonding bill that would have paid for a new UM College of Technology building, among other buildings around the state.  It would have pumped $29 million into the Missoula economy, and would be an investment in Montana’s future by educating and training Montanans.  There was plenty of other bad stuff, too, some of it yet to reach the governor’s desk.  The Associated Press has a round-up.

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  1. Geoff Badenoch

    I was disappointed that the Montana Legislature failed to pass the authorization to issue bonds to construct projects all over Montana. This proposal had deep and strong support across Montana from contractors, labor, communities, etc. In Missoula the COT project was listed as UM’s #1 priority. Note: it was a project to help educate technicians, health care professionals, blue color workers, etc. Not a poetry, philosophy or humanities student other liberal arts program participant in sight.

    Is it debt? Of course it is. It’s the way states and local governments build things. Buildings and facilities built with this sort of funding have lifetimes that go way beyond the life of the bonds. Most of our public buildings are built this way and, in the life time of a bond, it can be reasonably assumed that the economy will have ups and downs. The need for the facilities is now, and although the economy would have gone up and down, the ability to educate our citizens would have been met now and long after the bonds were paid off. And it would have created jobs, which I recall was the drumbeat to which this Legislature’s leadership opened the session.

    File the rejection of this proposal by the Legislature as both penny stupid and pound foolish.

  2. Matthew Koehler

    RE: Donald Trump

    After watching President Obama’s thorough roasting of The Donald during the White House Correspondents’ dinner last night, it occurred to me that perhaps the White House waited until a few nights before the dinner to release “the long form.” That’s really the one and only place where the President can do what he did to Trump…and President Obama did it very well.

  1. 1 Black Birds

    […] News and views III « 4&20 blackbirds 4&20 blackbirds Blogging the politics and culture of Missoula and Montana and everywhere else beyond. News and views III. April 30, 2011 in 2011 Legislative Session, 2012 Election, Denny Rehberg, Missoula, Montana, Montana Republicans, […]




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