Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Std-Ex: Don't Mess with GRAMA

The Std-Ex Editorial Board joins WCF in speaking out in strong opposition to Rep. Aagard's HB 122

Another strong editorial from the Standard-Examiner this morning, this time picking up where we left off with our own Weber County Forum Monday rant, concerning the evils of Rep. Douglas Aagard's proposed House Bill 122. The Std-Ex editorial board has consistently stood up over the years for preservation of the relatively robust "transparency in government" provisions which are presently embodied in Utah's Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA) . And here they go again, repeating for the seemingly unpteenth time a message which ought not be repeatedly ignored by the morons on Capitol Hill. The Std-Ex once again issues our legislature yet another strong reminder this morning, together with a brief civics 101 lesson:
We remind legislators — and we are sure that we will have to keep reminding them each year — that the public’s right to know should take precedence over government’s desire for secrecy.
Within the editorial, the Std-Ex singles out and salutes the three Democratic Party legislators who voted to kill this liberty-unfriendly bill in committee. Being the curious type, we googled, and hereby present the complete roster of the same House committee, complete with handy party affiliation color coding:
House Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Committee
Rep. Douglas C. Aagard, Chair (R)
Rep. Curtis Oda, Vice Chair (R)
Rep. Trisha S. Beck (D)
Rep. John Dougall (R)
Rep. Ben C. Ferry (R)
Rep. Richard A. Greenwood (R)
Rep. David Litvack (D)
Rep. Rebecca D. Lockhart (R)
Rep. Paul Ray (R)
Rep. Jennifer M. Seelig (R)
Rep. Larry B. Wiley (D)
Rep. Carl Wimmer (R)
As to the the three committee Democrats who voted to drive a stake through the heart of this highly citizen-unfriendly bill, we bestow a hearty Weber County Forum Tip O' the Hat. As to our fellow Republicans who voted to send this bill on to the House floor, we have a question: When exactly did the Utah Republican Party, ostensibly the champion of limited and citizen-friendly government, so uniformly transform itself into the party of government secrecy?

Unfortunately, we never got the memo, and our feelings are hurt because we got left out of the information loop.

And for our many fellow Republican lumpencitizen readers all across the state of Utah...we have a further suggestion. Write down the names of these above-listed Utah GOP legislators... so's you don't forget them. They'll be running again for their House of Representatives seats in danged near the political blink of an eye, and we don't want to forget their names a little less than two years hence, when we'll have an opportunity to put their feet to the fire.

We hereby invite our readers' comments about this.


Bill C. said...

Rudi, suddenly transforemed into the party of government secracy? You guys gave us Nixon, your leaders are advocating central data bases to track individual alcohol consumption, yours is not a party centered around an ideology but a theology. One that holds as a major tenet, never question those in positions of authority. The Utah GOP seems to adhere quite well to this principle and has for most of our lifetimes.
The flaw in their approach is that they veiw themselves as authorative rather than as common individuals sent to represent other common folk.

Bill C. said...

Rudi, you may want to impress on you party's representatives that; reponsibiltiy does not equal superiority or authority over those they represent, they're supposed to serve.

Monotreme said...

Is this the same Rep. Curtis Oda who famously observed that concealed-carry guns on college campuses were not as dangerous as a guy with a sword?

Apparently, he didn't see this demonstration.

RudiZink said...

LOL, Mono. Good one!

RudiZink said...

"Rudi, suddenly transforemed into the party of government secracy?"

I confess you got me on that one Bill. In my haste to post today's opening article, I inarticulately used the word "suddenly." I've now gone back and done an edit, striking "suddenly" and inserting "so uniformly," which better describes what I deem to be a recent Utah GOP (not national GOP) transformation. If you look back over the past few decades of Utah GOP history, you'll observe that the Utah version of the GOP has always had a strong paleoconservative (libertarian) element. That's not the case lately, I'll unhappily observe. Within the past very few years, most of this faction (my faction) seems to have "flown the coop."

As to the point in your second comment, I couldn't be more in agreement. In this connection I'll refer to Trentelman's most excellent Wastch Rambler column of yesterday, wherein Charlie makes your point square-on:

"Rep. Mike Noel, R-Kanab, voiced the attitude best in a statement about those oil leases the federal government rescinded because it doesn’t want people’s pictures of Delicate Arch to have an oil derrick in the background:
“We’re the Legislature, the ones who are supposed to have control.”
No, you’re not, Mike. Those are public lands and you are public employee. You are supposed to work for, and represent, and be fair to, all the people."

Curmudgeon said...

Hmmmmmm... let's see now. Passed on a straight party-line vote. All Republicans voted for gutting the GRAMA statute, all Democrats voted nay. Hmmmmm.... I wonder.... might that possibly suggest a plan of action to voters in Ogden and Weber Counties? A way, come next election, to maybe prevent this sort of thing from happening in the future?

Hmmmmmm... I wonder what that plan of action might be....

I voted D said...

Curm, you are too funny. I only wish us Yellow Dogs could get the R's to remember all the transgressions that their so-called representatives have committed over the years when it's time to vote.
See ya at the meeting Saturday morning?

How much will it cost us said...

Off thread but thanks to the republician insurance lobbyist my car insurance went up $15.86 a month on my 2 vehicles that are over 8 years old. The legislature mandated more insurance coverage.

So now how many folks will stop their insurance after they register their vehicle?

Why does the legislature have to tell me how much coverage I need. No accidents in over 10 years, no hurricanes or eathquakes to dig into the insurance companies profits.

Just another reason Utah is the highest taxed and screwed state in the USA.......

Bill C said...

Ah, Rudi, I can't get over it. Yea, Trentleman did point that out and quite well I might add but unfortunately the majority of people in this state don't get it.
Still to this day most think that coal is the salvation of this region. It's no surprize that these elected so-called reps, understand fully and take advantage of the ignorance and apathy of the general public.
Case in point. 1998, these guys passed the bill that became Prop 5 amending the state constitution. This to me highlights the level of stupidity shared by so many in Utah. By a slim majority of 56% to 44% the voters of Utah basically took away their own say in all wildlife issues and policy unless they could achive a super majority at the polls, 67%. This was also a year that saw the most closed caucus meetings to date, defying the spirit of open meetings laws and eliminating the public or their opposition from having any real input or say.

RudiZink said...

Keep your eyes on Weber County Forum, Bill. Within the next few weeks, according to our understanding, after conversations with a bipartisan coalition of disgruntled Republicans and Democrats, we plan to feature a new web site, which will strongly support the abandonment of our presently corrupt Utah Caucus party nomination system.

We'll definitely let you all know how this effort shapes up.

Curmudgeon said...

It's not just coal. There was a state legislator --- I shall be virtuous and not mention his party --- who said this week that we have 400 years worth of oil in oil shale in Utah. Sure we do.... but he did not discussion how much of it was recoverable with present or even predicted technologies, and at what price per bbl. [Notice how all the talk of oil shale development being fast tracked has kind of skittered to silence now that oil has slipped to 40 bucks a bbl? At 150 bucks a bbl, maybe --- maybe --- there was enough oil in shale recoverable at a profitable price in Utah to make development worth while. Maybe. But at 40 bucks a bbl? No way no how.

The legislator didn't mention that. I wonder why....

dan s. said...

Folks, may I suggest that you take a few minutes away from blogging and get on the phone tonight to call your state reps and ask them to oppose HB 122? I actually think there's a chance that a moderate number of phone calls could make a difference here.

Amy Wicks said...

Off topic but worthwhile.

Ogden jazz legend Joe McQueen is playing at Union Station tonight (Wednesday, February 11) at 7:30.

Free, well behaved children and adults are welcome.

Joe is almost 90 and still plays a mean sax.

Against Nancy P., Harry R., and Dems including Utah's RINO said...


Norman Mattoon Thomas (November 20, 1884 - December
19, 1968 and some of us are old enough to remember him running for
President) was a leading American socialist, pacifist, and six-time
presidential candidate for the Socialist Party of America.

Norman Thomas said this in a 1944 speech:

"The American people will never knowingly adopt socialism. But, under the name of "liberalism," they will adopt every fragment of the socialist program, until one day America will be a socialist nation, without knowing how it happened." He went on to say: "I no longer need to run as a Presidential Candidate for the Socialist Party. The Democratic Party has adopted our platform."

Just for Curm, and all tha boys and girls on this blog...

Curmudgeon said...

Funny how folks who look upon socialism as an anathema nevertheless quote socialists and offer their words up as graven in stone and handed down from the [political] mount when it suits their purposes....

As for me, I like to think of myself as a pragmatist, you know, like Teddy Roosevelt. I'm interested in what works in any given situation, and I don't care what you call it: socialism, capitalism, pastafarianism, rumplestiltkinism, pragmatism, or green jelloism. I want to know, especially in a national crisis, if a proposal will work. If it will, you can call it whatever you please. That won't matter to me at all.

Bill C. said...

Curm, pastafarianism? I'm interested. Please enlighten me.

rosco pee ko train said...

I find it interesting that Howell and Schwebke always beat up the democrat’s during the campaign season.

But to make themselves look like they beat up their own party too. They always wait until the election is over, when they try throwing mud at their own their own political party.

By the way Howell and Schwebke are not bathroom toe tappers that everybody thinks they are!!

When will Howell and Schweke learn that the republican party is not for free unfethered axcess to government records. Republicans have a lot to hid. Not that Howell and Schwebke would do anything about their republican buddies that are abuseing the taxpayers.

Howell and Schwebke are just flat assh0ls.

britney spears said...

Howell and Schwke are two ferry fine frinds that go queer cross town to go homo.

Schwartzenager said...

Why does the Standard Ex want gramma laws unfetterd access?

They elect Republicans they love Republicans. Republicans don't do anything wrong.

Why would Howell and Schwebke need to spy on republicans because there are no democrats in office to spy on. Unless,, they want to watch me and their wives.

drewmeister said...

Bill C, I believe Curm is making reference to a religion I'm quite partial to, and I'm very pleased he did, btw. I think it's just as sensible a religion as any other out here in the world today. Pastafarianism

Curmudgeon said...

There is an interesting supplement in this morning's SE. It is the Ogden-Weber Chamber of Commerce annual supplement, announcing the winners of Chamber Awards for this year for business leaders and for community service [to all of whom congratulations]. But it also includes a full page from Chamber President Dave "Cables" Hardman, outlining the Chamber's policy and program goals for the coming year --- what the Chamber intends to support and promote.

It's not a bad list in many ways. The Chamber will promote, Hardman reports, "Green Community practices," and "transportation infrastructure and public transit to ensure growth opportunity,[and] reduction of congestion and pollution." But what is surprising about the list is what is not there: nowhere in the long communication by "Cables" Hardman does the word "gondola" appear. Not once. Not ever. This, from the fellow who, when the Mayor's cockamamie gondola-for-golf-course swap project was taking on water fast, was assuring people face to face that "it's a done deal; it's going to happen." Yet now, in Hardman's plan for the coming year, the gondola seems to have gone extinct.

Well, now. That's certainly a change. Some might even call it progress. And how appropriate that the supplement appears in the SE on Darwin Day. Seems even "Cables" Hardman and the Chamber he leads is capable of evolving. Imagine that....

Bill C. said...

Thanks Drew, I am impressed, and it comes from Kansas.
That Curm, nothing slips by him.

ozboy said...

Mr. Curmudgeon

You wrote above in a comment: "I want to know, especially in a national crisis, if a proposal will work."

That seems to be the hard part!

Fer instance in the current "national crisis" just how is a body to know what given complex proposal will really work? For every thousand economists there seems to be 893 different opinions of what will work and what won't.

Please show respect said...

"Bill C, I believe Curm is making reference to a religion I'm quite partial to, and I'm very pleased he did, btw. I think it's just as sensible a religion as any other out here in the world today. Pastafarianism" Drewmeister....

Drewmeister, Curm, Bill C., Tech Johnson and all those who show a tendency to mock and demean Christianity. I need to say simply this: Although many of you, although not all of you, have never been in a war, and likely are now too old to have to worry about such, many of your dad's were. And out of war comes some basic moral truths.

"There is no such thing as an atheist in a fox hole." Meaning when the bombs or mortor shells are exploading all around you, no one turns to "RA", or the "Flying Spagetti Monster", or "Joseph Smith", or any other idols or false prophets (and there have been thousands). Soldiers faced with imminent death pray simply to the singular God of our forefathers.

So when you mock and laugh at those who do believe in the one true God of Christianity, please remember that basic truth "there is no such thing as an unbeliever in a fox hole". Or at least show some reverance too, or basic decency toward it.

For you who have been sadly disenfranchised and turned off by disappointments in what ever religion you were exposed too, I remind you of blasphemy: Other terms for blasphemy are blasphemous libel, defamation of religion, vilification of religion, and religious vilification.

We old timers, were "raised" on "don't be sacreligious". It was, and still is, considered rude, immoral, and ignorant behavior, generally employed by pseudo-intellectuals who are simply insecure in their belief structures or who have been sadly turned against all others and thus have become cynics. You are entitled to such self defeating behavior, opinions, theories, etc. But there are some subjects which are just not appropriate for public exposure.

It is like personalized bathroom wall graffiti...very low life and inappropriate.

There I said it...Now have at it...

Curmudgeon said...

Please show respect:

Two points:

1. Just for the record, in the post you refer to, I made no, repeat no, disparaging comments about Christianity or any other faith. I was making a point about looking for practical solutions to economic problems, and about not much caring how someone might characterize those solutions... as socialist, capitalist, pastafarian, rumplestilkinism or green jello-ism. How you derived from that the notion that I'd posted an attack on Christianity escapes me. Could it be you're looking for ways to be offended, even when none are there?

2. You wrote this --- "There is no such thing as an atheist in a fox hole."

Sorry, but that business about no atheists in the foxhole is nonsense. I knew an atheist who went into WWII an atheist, fought [combat infantry] through D-Day to the end of the war as an atheist, got wounded as an atheist, and came home atheist. It's just one of those old bromides folks like to quote that turn out not to be so. Makes some folks feel better, I guess, to think it's so, but the evidence won't support the claim. Change it to "few" atheists in the foxhole, and you'll be on solid ground. But not "none."

Respect said...


You previous post(s) have on occasion mocked Christian beliefs in several ways. An objective and prudent review will prove it so. And you know that.

And as for your alledged atheist friend...I highly suspect it is untrue. Whether you or he/she reported it or not, I care not.

Go with His grace and forgiveness. You will need it soon enough ole friend. We all will, and sooner than we think.

Curmudgeon said...


As for this: And as for your alleged atheist friend...I highly suspect it is untrue.

Well, sorry, R, but if you discount as untrue all atheists who profess their unbelief, there's not much point to discussing matters. I could just easily say of your statement of belief that "I highly suspect it is untrue."

Seems to me, R, if you want people to accept what you say about your own belief, you more or less have to accept what other's say about their belief --- or lack thereof. Particularly if you're going to go about signing yourself "Show Some Respect Please."

Ciao, paisan.

Bill C. said...

There you go again Curn, who's God stuff, twice in a month.
I do wonder what Mr. or MS. Respect is refering to when he mentions the God of our forefathers. In these United States, the ultimate melting pot, every culture, race, creed and religion on the planet represented, not to mention the hundreds of truely Native belief systems here for thousands of years before our discovery, who's God.( I always laugh at the thought of discovery) Curm, your incorrigible.

dReWmEiStEr said...

Respect, thank you for your condescending and self-righteous diatribe. You show an astounding lack of respect for anyone who doesn't hold the same mystic beliefs as yourself. Very Christ-like. Though not surprising, from someone who praises the virtues of his ancient history when blacks sat at the back of the bus and women always wore dresses. I like to think that the progression towards respect and tolerance for individuality is a good thing, but I guess I'm wrong. Perhaps, oh great learned one, whom I am not worthy to speak to until I've crawled the shores of Normandy and nailed myself to a cross to cry my sad song of discrimination just as you yourself have, you may find it in your heart to forgive me for exercising the right to have a goddamned sense of humor?

Seems to me that these soldiers, that you pompous conservatives always invoke when your 9/11 and illegal immigrant cards run out, fought for the right of all humans here on American soil as well as all the continents of God's or Mother Nature's or whoever you want to think created it, to be free to believe what we want to believe. I'm sure you agree.. however, most conservatives seem to bristle at anyone actually expressing those beliefs. Unless they coincide with their own.

You also show a strong streak of assumption when it comes to others, since you evidently don't know how to mind your own business. Allow me to quote a favorite movie of mine, though I'm sure it doesn't hold a candle to your wise, sage advice, perhaps it may offer a glimmer of intelligence in reference to your assumptive arguments: "Assumptions, my dear, are the mother of all fuck-ups."

May we all bask in the glow of His Holy Noodliness!

And if you disagree.. well, bite me. A lot of soldiers that you passionately invoke whenever the mood touches you died so that I could say so, and I intend to exercise that right to the fullest. To not do so would be a shameful travesty.

Bill C. said...

Respect, I mean no disrespect for your foxhole example and I have given it some thought, but I offer you an example, a cheyenne dog soldier, no hunkering in a hole, he'd stake himself to ground on which he stood,say "it's a good day to die" and fight you to the death. No reflection or question as to what's to come that is the land of his forefathers and their Creator. Is your faith stronger than his? Do you question his faith? You're entitled to your beliefs but not superiority.

Curmudgeon said...


In re: There you go again Curn, who's God stuff, twice in a month.... Curm, you're incorrigible.

Hey, Bill, cut me some slack. I thought I was posting on the Obama jobs plan. Odin knows where religion commentary came into that. Perhaps Athena will grant me the wisdom to understand it, but so far she hasn't.

Believer said...

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that who so ever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life.

That God is the only God and He loves you. He only wants a relationship with you. That you turn away from Him is a choice you must live and die with.

RJ Svengali said...

On that note, it would seem to be story time.

To wit:

by Camden Benares, The Count of Five
Headmaster, Camp Meeker Cabal

A serious young man found the conflicts of mid 20th Century America confusing. He went to many people seeking a way of resolving within himself the discords that troubled him, but he remained troubled.

One night in a coffee house, a self-ordained Zen Master said to him, "go to the dilapidated mansion you will find at this address which I have written down for you. Do not speak to those who live there; you must remain silent until the moon rises tomorrow night. Go to the large room on the right of the main hallway, sit in the lotus position on top of the rubble in the northeast corner, face the corner, and meditate."

He did just as the Zen Master instructed. His meditation was frequently interrupted by worries. He worried whether or not the rest of the plumbing fixtures would fall from the second floor bathroom to join the pipes and other trash he was sitting on. He worried how would he know when the moon rose on the next night. He worried about what the people who walked through the room said about him.

His worrying and meditation were disturbed when, as if in a test of his faith, ordure fell from the second floor onto him. At that time two people walked into the room. The first asked the second who the man was sitting there was. The second replied "Some say he is a holy man. Others say he is a shithead."

Hearing this, the man was enlightened.


The Hell Law says that Hell is reserved exclusively for them that believe in it. Further, the lowest Rung in Hell is reserved for them
that believe in it on the supposition that they'll go there if they don't.
HBT; The Gospel According to Fred, 3:1

drewmeister said...

Jesus, save me from your self-righteous followers.

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