Recent Writings

Commissioner race can be uplifting

It can be downright depressing. We’re realizing the most dangerous threat to our privacy comes not from Big Bro but Big Corp. Orwellian ventures mining not for gold as did Clear Creek’s first white guys but for personal data. Now it’s from your Facebook account. It was bad enough knowing marketing research was the underlying principle of Madison Avenue, men-in-black sorts for whom a fulfilled life meant convincing the gullible toenail fungus was the greatest impediment to their health and happiness. But now we have evidence about how those slicksters used your personal data and beliefs to get you to vote for, well, you-know-who and the you-know-who’s.

The news wasn’t akin to a revelation from heaven ala God and Moses or a lightning bolt from Thor to Sven commanding him to plunder Europe. We, as in those who accept evidenced-based information as fact as opposed to those who refuse to clutter their minds with knowledge that challenges already-held beliefs, have known for some time many were duped, snookered, conned by Raskolnikov’s descendants. Besides pissing us off, it scared the bejesus out of us because of its grave threat to our democracy. Now we’ve learned of how they were aided and abetted by their Cambridge cuzzes whose analytical services were secured by the you-know-who’s. Ah, you might ask, what is the punishment befitting the crime?

No wonder many are cynical about politics and governance. Machiavelli and Goebbels meet Facebook.

But, no time to explore that now because we also need to focus on Clear Creek where we’re blessed to live. Good gosh, we got it all, don’t you think? A rugged, natural home folks traverse great distances to check out. A plenitude of fun stuff to do in concert with a menagerie of off-beat personalities who make life real. Sure, there’s a gaggle of such on the flats, but they get swallowed up by the pell-mell rush of urban life. Tough to stand out when you’re one of trillions. Okay, a few less but when we leave the hinterlands for Big Town, thousands seem like trillions.

Yep, we have it good, which gives us a job to do: Keep it good. Which serves as my writing segue to something that might be as exciting as pondering The D’s comb-over: The commissioner race.

Oh, you might ask, is there one? Gosh, you might say, I’m usually up on this sort of thing, but crazy me, it simply slipped by me.

Yes, Virginia, there’s an election to replace old Tim Mauck. Well, Tim’s not old, at least in the classic sense, but he’s been the District One—Idaho Springs—commish, as I call them, for eight years, which makes it like forever, so is term-limited, which is our way of saying we don’t trust ourselves. Like how TABOR ultimately being a paean to mobocracy.

The cool thing is there are several who’ve said they’d like to fill Tim’s waders. That’s neat because it’s the essence of democracy. And it gives us the perfect reason to go at it about our home: How it is and how it should be past our times given our personal limited shelf-life. Because, in the end, we’re only caretakers for our Clear Creek home.

Recently, I talked with George Marlin on KYGT about his campaign for commish. A great part of the conversation was that we talked about more than the specific issues, which are critical of course; we talked about Clear Creek itself: What makes us the community we are and what we need to do to sustain it. I like that type of discussion because it forces participants and listeners to think, to move past the blah, blah, blah and delve into the essence of who we are and define our vision for a great community.

Commissioner in small counties is a pretty big deal, even bigger than being an American Idol judge. They make final calls on how it will go down or up in Clear Creek. But what’s really cool is that we make the final call on who gets to make the final call. A good antidote for cynicism. So maybe not so depressing after all. In fact, pretty uplifting, don’t you think?

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