Above the Law: Mesa County Republican Candidates Broke G.J. City Ordinance

November 16, 2014

Note: The following commentary was written by, and reprinted with permission from a local tea party activist who goes by the handle “American Patriot.” A few spelling errors have been corrected and links are provided to further information, including the City Ordinance cited in the piece, which was fully in effect in 2014.

A Commentary by American Patriot — November 16, 2014

Former Congressman Scott McInnis won arace for Mesa County Commissioner in November, 2014, even though his campaign broke several rules, including illegally posting campaign signs on power poles without permission and standing on city medians in violation of City Ordinance 9.04.250, "Prohibition against standing on or occupying medians."

Former Congressman Scott McInnis won a seat on the Mesa County Commission in November, 2014, even though his campaign broke several rules, including illegally posting campaign signs on power poles without permission and waving signs while standing on city medians in violation of City Ordinance 9.04.250, titled “Prohibition against standing on or occupying medians.”

Just before the last election, it was reported that Scott McInnis was parading up and down the Highway 6 and 50 traffic medians parading a political sign. And the Matt Lewis for sheriff campaign was engaged in the same illegal activity at 1st and Grand in violation of City Ordinance 9.04.250 which specifically forbids the use of medians for “political campaign activity.”

It would be bad enough if it were only a commissioner-elect and a sheriff-elect that flagrantly, if unintentionally, violated the law of the land, but wait for it; here’s the kicker. It was none other than our incumbent District Attorney Pete Hautzinger, who was sign-waving on behalf of sheriff elect Matt Lewis’ campaign while occupying a designated median at 1st and Grand. Now, if you or I were to do the same thing, it could cost us up to a thousand dollars and/or one year in jail.

Have you ever heard the saying, usually used by prosecutors, DA’s and law enforcement officers that “ignorance of the law is no excuse?” Well, between McInnis, Lewis and Pete Hautzinger, which one of those three do you think could get away with using ignorance of the law as a defense? Well, maybe if they just plead ignorant, a jury of Mesa County voters could buy that?

No doubt any of the three would rather be seen as ignorant rather than unethical lawbreakers. But that’s just an unproven theory. But how would you like to find out? You can, you know, by making this commentary go viral. There are thousands of eyewitnesses out there, myself included in the case of Hautzinger, which brings us to another unproven theory that just happens to be common knowledge: There are some folks in G.J. that are just above the law. Have any of them been cited or charged? Have they even been contacted by police?

Well, so much for that theory being unproven, which brings us to another violation of the law: selective enforcement.  And the list of un-indicted co-conspirators rises exponentially, and maybe they’ll all want to plead ignorance, too. Or maybe with all those thousands of eye witnesses, which could include law enforcement officers, district attorneys, county commissioners, city councilmen, and oh yeah, boo coo voters from both political parties, (and perhaps some media types) it would just be impossible to establish probable cause that a crime had been committed. Our very own elected Larry, Curly and Moe were the very people who committed that crime, even though the crimes were committed in broad daylight, using every device known to man to attract public attention, including standing on a designated median that “separates traffic for vehicular travel into opposite or different directions. between two lanes of traffic moving in opposite directions,” while waving a sign (pasted from ordinance)

Mesa County Sheriff-Elect Matt Lewis (Photo: KREX-TV)

Mesa County Sheriff-Elect Matt Lewis (Photo: KREX-TV)

If it’s true that you can indict a ham sandwich, well hell, even Pete Hautzinger could build this case. But where is the ACLU when you really need them?

What are the people to think? What are they to believe when absolutely nothing is done about this “in your face,” arrogant and unethical behavior by our elected officials? Have we gotten to the point where it’s all just white noise? Is this what we’re to accept as government leading from behind? Is this the state of our nation? Maybe so, but one thing is certain; we are no longer a nation of laws, nor are we a nation where our leaders take personal responsibility for their own actions.

Who will hold these people accountable for breaking the law, when they are the law in Mesa County? While it is a fact that panhandling bums are held to account to the same law that these elected officials willfully violated, it can also be argued that at least some of the panhandling bums broke the law through necessity. No one can argue that the bums should hold elected office; even though maybe they should, even if for just a few days…in the interest of accountability to justice.

–A.P.

 Additional resources:

McInnis Campaign Fails to get Permission to Post signs, October 6, 2014

Congress Suspended Rule to Rename “McInnis Canyons,” August 27, 2014

Petition: Change the Name of “McInnis Canyons” Back to Previous Name, August 24, 2014

Killing the Messenger: U.S. Postal Service in Congress’ Crosshairs

November 14, 2014
Supporters of the U.S. Post Office in Grand Junction protest further cutbacks at the Patterson Road mail sorting facility on Friday, Nov. 14th.

Supporters of the U.S. Post Office in Grand Junction protest further cutbacks at the Patterson Road mail sorting facility on Friday, Nov. 14th.

Supporters of the U.S. Postal Service rallied outside the Patterson Road Mail Processing Annex in Grand Junction Friday afternoon to protest a new round of cuts that will eliminate Saturday delivery and close 82 more postal stations, including mail sorting facilities, nationwide.

In 2006 Congress mandated that the U.S. Postal Service pre-fund health benefits for its future retirees 75 years in advance, a requirement made of no other business on Earth. The requirement is costing the Postal Service a whopping $5.6 billion per year, making it financially much harder for it to operate. In addition, now the U.S. Postal Board of Governors, which oversees the Post Office, will meet to approve cutbacks aimed at eliminating Saturday mail delivery. These newest rounds of cutbacks will delay the mail, making it take much longer to simply get a letter across town.

Palisade Pot and Mesa County Clerk Sheila Reiner

November 5, 2014
The Mesa County Clerk's two goofs on the Palisade ballot appear to have been effective at keeping recreational pot out of the Grand Valley for the immediate future.

The Mesa County Clerk’s two goofs on the Palisade ballot right before the Nov. 4 election — both affecting only Palisade and the town’s two pot measures — appear to have helped keep recreational pot out of the Grand Valley for the time being.

It’s no secret that Mesa County’s Old Guard Establishment Republicans (OGREs) oppose legalized marijuana. Even though Colorado legalized marijuana in 2012, the Commissioners — all OGREs — exercised their option under the law to prohibit retail sale of pot throughout the unincorporated county, shutting off a new source of badly-needed new jobs and tourism, and blocking a desperately-needed economic boost to Mesa County’s long-suffering economy.

The OGREs’ only problem is that despite their best efforts, retail pot keeps creeping closer to Grand Junction, and there’s little they can do about it. Under state law, home-rule cities and towns can make their own rules regarding the sale and cultivation of pot, and last spring the town of DeBeque, 32 miles east of Grand Junction, approved retail pot shops by four votes.  Now DeBeque is poised to reap the benefits of being the first town on Interstate 70 inside Colorado’s western border to have retail recreational marijuana shops.

But retail recreational pot was about to creep even closer than that. Read more »

It’s Time to End GOP Rule in Mesa County

November 2, 2014

GOPIndistressDo you plan to vote for Republican incumbents and the same Mesa County politicians we’ve had in office before?

Think again.

Mesa County’s long reliance on the local GOP has led it to disaster.

Just look at the Mesa County GOP’s record:

1) Our unemployment rate has long remained among the highest in the state;

2) Our local wages are among the very lowest in the state;

3) 13.4 percent of our area’s residents live below federal poverty level ($23,550 for a family of four),

4) Mesa County’s suicide rate is among the highest in the U.S.;

5) Mesa County is the drunkest county in the state in 2013 (based on the average blood alcohol concentration for arrested drunk drivers);

6) Forty one percent of School District 51 students qualify for free and reduced-cost lunches at school, and Kids Aid, the area nonprofit that provides backpacks of food to hungry students so they can get through the weekends without starving, sends 1,800 District 51 students home with backpacks full of non-perishable food home every WEEK.

Yes, you read that right. Eighteen hundred Mesa County school children are food insecure every WEEK. Have you heard a single local GOP elected official mention this state of affairs? No. Read more »

Why a Fetus is Not a Person

October 31, 2014

NotADifficultConcept

Updated November 5, 2014

Colorado’s Amendment 67 did not pass, to the relief of most of the state. The measure would have declared unborn human beings as a “person” or a “child” in the Colorado Criminal Code. It was yet another a personhood measure, but this year Personhood USA, the group pushing these kinds of measures, tried to disguise that fact by calling it the “Brady Amendment,” after a fetus a woman lost in a 2012 drunk driving accident. Naming the measure after a woman’s lost fetus was an attempt to give the measure emotional appeal, because when you can get people to react through emotion, they’ll often bypass their rational thinking.

Coloradans have rejected personhood measures three times now, for good reason. The thinking behind these ballot initiatives is illogical and thus fundamentally flawed.

A fetus is not a person in any legal sense.

Both fertilized eggs and clones represent potential, not actual human beings.

Zygotes, or fertilized eggs, and fetuses lack many of the physical characteristics of human beings. They don’t have brains, skeletons, or internal organs. A fetus cannot engage in human perception or thought. The analogy that fits is that an acorn is not an oak tree and the egg you eat for breakfast is not a chicken.

Fetuses have no social identity, and there is no precedent for giving them such. Names are not legally conferred upon fetuses until after birth.  The first legal recognition of a person’s existence is their birth certificate. No government on Earth issues “pre-birth certificates.” The government does not issue death certificates for miscarried or aborted fetuses. The government does not issue social security numbers to fetuses, or give fetuses rights of citizenship upon conception. Read more »

Mesa County’s Political Conservatism Showing Cracks

October 27, 2014
This yard sign, recently spotted on north 12th Street, provides evidence that Mesa County's long-time conservative political ideology is starting to change, as more local residents start to understand the folly, and dangers, of electing Republicans to office.

This yard sign, recently spotted on north 12th Street, is evidence that Mesa County’s long-time conservative political ideology is starting to change, as more local residents begin to understand the dangers of electing Republicans to office.

Online Database Details Religious Crimes Against Humanity

October 25, 2014

fishAn eye-opening database publicly available on Google Docs lists known major organized crimes implemented globally by the Catholic church and other religions. The list includes systematic child abductions by the Church (the seizure of millions of babies from unmarried women and girls from the mid 1940s to the mid 1970s who were then adopted out for profit), child and female enslavement, sexual abuse, child pornography, abuse of deaf victims, beatings, severe punishments and use of orphans as “guinea pigs” in human experimental and clinical trials. All entries are documented to authoritative sources or reporting. One example of crimes committed by the Catholic church is the so-called “Baby Scoop Era,” in which unwed pregnant girls were “disappeared” into Catholic “Mother-Baby Homes.” There the girls and young women were fed and housed with minimal attention until they gave birth in rooms alone, without support, assistance, counseling or coaching. The new young mothers were then coerced or forced to surrender their babies for adoption. This human rights crime against women is backed up with a link to a one hour investigative news program by Dan Rather titled “What the Catholic Church failed to tell you: Abominations of the Catholic Church in USA and Canada” that details how from the 1950s to the mid-1970s, Catholic nuns coerced over one million American women and girls to give up their babies. The Church then sold them into illegitimate adoptions for “astronomical profits.” Read more »

Woman and Girls Used as Slave Labor in Irish Laundries Operated by the Catholic Church

October 23, 2014
Women who were held as slaves in Catholic laundries in Ireland are seeking justice for their imprisonment and abuse

Women who were held as slaves in Catholic laundries in Ireland are seeking justice for their imprisonment and abuse

A BBC investigation has revealed that Irish nuns from the Catholic church took female children out of church-operated state orphanages and used them as unpaid slave labor in church-owned commercial laundry facilities called the Magdalene Laundries. Women and girls made to work in the laundries were held as prisoners and endured significant abuse. The slave laundries existed into the 1980s and did the laundry for restaurants, railway stations, convents and the airport. Some women were held in the laundries for over 50 years.

The Irish Examiner newspaper investigated the finances of religious orders that operated the laundries in 2012 and found they owned assets of $1.9 billion. (Yes, that’s “billion” with a “B.”).

One woman, the main subject in BBC’s report, escaped the laundry, ran to a nearby church for help, got raped by a priest and returned to the laundry. She became pregnant from the rape. The nuns took her baby away from her at birth and gave it up for adoption. The woman was forced to work in the laundry for 14 years. She was finally reunited with her daughter 40 years after her birth. The woman is demanding an apology — just an apology — from the Church.

Source: Demanding justice for women and children abused by Irish nunsBBC News, September 23, 2014

Man Paralyzed by Spinal Cord Injury Walks Again After Groundbreaking Surgery

October 20, 2014

A British man paralyzed from the chest down in a knife attack two years ago has regained the ability to walk after an experimental treatment in which doctors transplanted cells from one of his olfactory bulbs into his spinal cord.

Olfactory sheathing cells (OEC) and enable the sense of smell. Since olfactory cells, which part of the nervous system, are constantly being damaged and replaced, the olfactory system is the only nervous system in the body that constantly regenerates itself throughout life. Doctors harnessed this regenerative ability to help the man regain his ability to walk.

Surgeons performed two separate operations. First, they removed one of the patient’s two olfactory bulbs and used it to grow more olfactory ensheathing cells in a culture. After two weeks, they transplanted some of the new OECs into the man’s spinal cord. They then made about 100 micro-injections of OECs just above and below the damaged area of his spine. In a second surgery, doctors took four small strips of nerve tissue from the man’s ankle and placed them across the gap in his spinal cord. The graft provided a bridge across the gap in the spinal cord for the OEC regrowth to follow.

Prior to the operation, the patient had undergone intensive physiotherapy for two years but made no progress towards getting his leg function back. But three months after the experimental surgery, he noticed more muscle growth in this left thigh. Six months after the operation, he took several steps on his own between parallel bars, with help from a physical therapist and supported by leg braces. He has also gotten back some of his bladder and bowel sensations and sexual function.

Using the man’s own cells eliminated the possibility his body would reject the transplanted cells. MRIs done on the patient’s spine indicate the gap in his spinal cord has closed since the treatment.

The landmark research that led to the successful operation was supported by the Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation (NSIF) and the UK Stem Cell Foundation. None of the researchers or institutions involved in the pioneering research want to profit from it, and NSIF says it would acquire any patents that might come out of the research so they can make the surgery technique freely available to all who need it.

Until this groundbreaking surgery yielded these results, spinal cord regeneration was thought to be impossible.

Source: Paralysed man walks again after cell transplant, BBC.com Health News, October 20, 2013

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