Monday, November 24, 2014

Salt Lake Tribune Op-ed: Insiders Working to Kill ‘Count My Vote’ Reforms

Stripped of their former stranglehold over the Utah political nomination process, it seems that some GOP political insiders will stop at nothing to put themselves back in the drivers seat

Uh-oh folks. Seems that foes of Utah's March 2014 "Count My Vote" legislative compromise, which "statutorily established a sensible two-track system for Utah political nominations." remain hard at work, behind the scenes, attempting to once again re-establish plutocratic Republican Party "insider control" of the Utah political nomination process, according to one informative Saturday (11/22/14) Salt Lake Tribune op-ed.  Here's contributing author Kirk Jowers's introductory lede:
Senate Bill 54, the compromise Count My Vote law, passed overwhelmingly in the 2014 Legislative Session, empowering voters by giving candidates an alternative path to the primary election ballot. Now, I hear rumblings about legislative and legal plans to gut the law and obstruct its intent.
Check out Mr. Jowers's eye-opening full writeup, Weber County Forum political wonks, which describes possible new upcoming legislation, a possible lawsuit, along a useful historical summary of "how we got here":
"If such an act of bad faith is attempted, it would trigger public uproar, risk a gubernatorial veto and prompt a major referendum campaign challenge," Mr. Jowers opines, quite rightly..

Back in April, we posted this:
And in a move which we'll characterize as a demonstration of exceedingly bad sportsmanship, it seems that the GOP crackpot faction ram-rodded through a convention resolution which would, if successful, reverse the landmark "Count My Vote" legislative compromise achieved during the 2014 Utah legislative session, which broke the GOP "extremist" nominations stranglehold, and statutorily established a sensible two-track system for Utah political nominations:
In the wake of the passage of this resolution, state GOP leadership remains "cagey" about precisely how this revisionary tactic would be implemented.  Nevertheless, we're sure that everybody will agree that the development of this story will be interesting to watch.
Consider yourselves "updated," folks. Stripped of their former stranglehold over the Utah political nomination process, it seems that some GOP political insiders will stop at nothing to put themselves back in the drivers seat.

This behavior is "exceedingly unsportmanlike," to say the very least.

We'll continue to carefully monitor this sleazy situation as it continues to develop, of course.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Weber State University Game Day Thread: WSU v. ISU - Updated

“This game is an absolute critical part to our future,” says Weber State head coach Jay Hill.

With back-to-back wins the Weber State football squad will look to end its season on a streak as the Wildcats take on longtime rival Idaho State University this afternoon. Weber State will play the Bengals today at 2:30 p.m. in Holt Arena in Pocatello. Weber State sits at 2-9 on the season and 2-5 in Big Sky play, following last Saturday’s 34-21 win over Northern Colorado. Idaho State sits at 7-4 overall and is 5-2 in Big Sky Conference play. The Bengals still have hopes to qualify for the FCS Playoffs.

The Northern Utah media is all over the pre-game coverage:
Even the Tribune is getting in on the act:
You can follow the game online, via the usual live-streaming sources, of course:
In the wake of the 'Cats two-game winning streak, our  2-9 'Cats are pegged as (get this)  14-point favorites!

The Standard's Brandon Garside neatly sums it up, we think, concerning what's at stake for the Wildcats on the Holt Arena gridiron this afternoon:
“This game is an absolute critical part to our future,” says Weber State head coach Jay Hill. “I think it’s big for us to have all this momentum going into next season, and into recruiting. Our players know it’s big, and obviously Idaho State knows its big.”
Although the Wildcats haven’t lost to the Bengals since 2002, getting a win will be a challenging task, as the Bengals have yet to lose inside Holt Arena this season.
They’re 5-0 at home, so being able to get a win in their dome is a big deal,” said WSU defensive coordinator Justin Ena. “It also carries a lot of momentum into the offseason. Guys believe not only in the program, but in themselves. Our guys have gained a lot of confidence, and if they can just keep on being confident and just doing their job, we’ll be successful.”
GO!  Wildcats!

Update 11/22.14 5:00 pm Whatta a disastster , Wildcats fans: Wildcats fall to the Bengals,  46-28.

Update 11/23/14 8:00 a.m.: The Standard's Brandon Garside provides the post-game story:

Friday, November 21, 2014

Salt Lake Tribune: Ex-Utah AG Swallow Faces a New Felony Charge

Sodden question: What other yet-uncharged allegations does SLC D.A. Sim Gill  have still simmerin' on the back burner?

On the heels of yesterday's news that Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings filed a motion in 3rd District Court to drop a charge for racketeering against former Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff, we learn from the Salt Lake Tribune this morning that Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill has now upped the prosecutorial ante, with new criminal charge filed against John Swallow, Shurtleff's A.G. successor, and former co-defendant. Here's the lede from this morning's Jennifer Bobbner story:
Embattled former Utah Attorney General John Swallow faces a new felony charge for allegedly taking a Nevada houseboat trip paid for by a campaign contributor whom he also had defended in a state consumer protection investigation.
The new charge — a second-degree felony count of accepting a gift — brings the total tally against Swallow to 14 and reflects the nature of an ongoing probe, Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill said.
The charge, filed Thursday in 3rd District Court, is tied to a five-day Lake Mead houseboat trip prosecutors say Swallow took with his family in June 2010, while he was then-Attorney General Mark Shurtleff’s chief deputy, at the expense of Jared Pierce.
Read up, peeps:
"It didn’t surprise us. We knew that it would be coming along," Swallow’s attorney, Stephen McCaughey, said of the new charge, thus triggering the question:  "What other yet-uncharged allegations does SLC D.A. Sim Gill have still simmerin' on the back burner?"

Thursday, November 20, 2014

KSL News: Prosecutors Ask Judge to Drop Racketeering Charge Against Shurtleff

The downside for Shurtleff? Davis County prosecuter Troy Rawlings plainly believes the nine other remaining criminal charges will "stick."

KSL news is reporting an interesting development in the Mark Shurtleff case, wherein the former Utah Attorney General had been charged with ten criminal counts of "public corruption":
SALT LAKE CITY — State prosecutors asked a judge Wednesday to dismiss one of the 10 felony public corruption charges against former Utah Attorney General Mark Shurtleff.
Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings filed a motion in 3rd District Court to drop a charge for racketeering, saying the state doesn't have a "reasonable probability" of convicting Shurtleff of that charge. He asked Judge Elizabeth Hruby-Mills to dismiss the second-degree felony charge without prejudice, meaning prosecutors could bring it back.
Shurtleff [still] faces nine other felonies, including bribery, illegally accepting gifts, improper use of employee position and obstructing justice.
Check out the full video story here:
"Shurtleff said he was pleased with the decision to drop the racketeering charge," KSL's Dennis Romboy further reports.

The downside for Shurtleff? Davis County prosecuter Troy Rawlings plainly believes the nine other remaining criminal charges will "stick."

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Standard-Examiner: WSU VIOLATIONS: Math Teacher Completes Coursework for Football Players

Oh Dang! No sooner does the Weber State football program show signs of getting back on its feet, we receive this disturbing news, via the Standard-Examiner:
Whattabummer, eh 'Cats fans?

This is possibly worst news we Wildcats could receive, wethinks, as Coach Hill tries to rebuild the Wildcats into a Big Sky Conference "football power."

"DANG" pretty much sums it up, eh, my fellow WSU Wildcats Fans? Our WCF take? These academic fraud allegations may "fester, " just as they did many times for other colleges. Here are the most recent of many telling recent collegiate academic fraud examples however, for what it's worth,. Keep in mind that thisw is only one story of many.
Read up.WSU Football fans!
Update 11/20/14 7:20 a.m.: The Standard's sports-beat writer Jim Burton chimes in this morning with his own illuminating follow-up column:
Don't let the cat get your tongues, Wildcats fans!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Exclusive Poll: Utah's Liquor Laws Hurt Tourism and Economic Development

Peculiar" state we live in, innit?

Click to Enlarge Image
To kick off our Monday morning WCF discussion, we'll shine the spotlight on a last week's UtahPolicy.com poll, which revealed, among other things, that "[a] solid majority of Utahns say the state's liquor laws hurt economic development and tourism in the state. Our UtahPolicy.com poll finds 69% of Utahns feel the state's restrictive liquor laws put a damper on economic development and tourism":
Just like clockwork. the "telling" polling results concerning this Utah "hot button" issue provoked the Salt Lake Tribune to then unleash a flurry of followup stories and editorial commentary:
Governor Herbert ain't buying this new polling evidence however. Herbert "thinks Utah's liquor laws are effective and not hampering the economy, as some have argued." Herbert no doubt doesn't "give a fig" what Utah Lumpencitizens "think," we suppose :
Nevertheless, for the benefit of any WCF readers who may be concerned about our Zion's Zions's Curtain Law"silly", we invite you to check out the below-linked Salt Lake Tribune video story: featuring Utah House Representative Craig Powell, the GOP state legislator who plans to again run (for the third time) a "Zion Curtain repeal bill" during the 2015 Utah legislative session, as he and Melva Sine, ot the Utah Restaurant Association, now grapple with and "flesh out" the competing Zion's Curtain issue(s):
Alas, this 30-minute question and answer-style video presentation did not include input from the single Utah liquor law "stakeholder" whom, in the final analysis, will, in truth be "calling the shots." 

Keep your eyes on this space, O Gentle Readers, as we follow Representative Powell's courageous attempt to move his "remedial" bill forward through the 2015 "Churchislature."

"Peculiar" state we live in, innit?


Update 11/17/14 5:00 p.m.: Even the Standard Examiner editorial board is getting in on the act:

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Weber State University Game Day Thread: UNC v. WSU - Updated

Having finally tasted sweet victory on the road last week, here's hoping the Wildcats are resolved to make winning a habit!

Fresh off its first win of the season, the Weber State football squad returns home for the final home game of the year as the Wildcats host the Northern Colorado Bears this afternoon at Stewart Stadium. Today's game will begin at 1 p.m. and will be Senior Day and Jamie Martin Day.
Weber State sits at 1-9 on the season and 1-5 in Big Sky play, following Saturday’s 24-12 victory at North Dakota.
Northern Colorado is 3-6 overall and 2-4 in conference play. The Bears are coming off a bye week last week.

Check out the WSU website for the full pregame story:
After sitting it out last week, the Standard is back on the bandwagon with it own pre-game hype:
'Cats fans who can't make it to the stadium this chilly afternoon can follow the game via these live-streaming sources:
Surprise of surprises, our  1-9 'Cats are pegged as 5-point favorites!

Having finally tasted sweet victory on the road last week, here's hoping the Wildcats are resolved to make winning a habit! .

GO!  Wildcats!

Update 11/15/14 4:10 p.m.: Weber State whoops Northern Arizona by a score of  34-21.  Next WSU Wildcats victim? Idaho State U.

Update 11/15/14 5:40 p.m.:  It's victory again for our boyz in Purple and White:
And here's a little something even more uplifting, straight from the WSU website...



Yeah, Wildcats!

Added bounus 11/15/15 9:21 p.m: Actually, it's been a pretty good weekend for Utah College Football, all-in-all:
GO Utah Football Programs!

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