Category Archives: Local

Constitutional Carry in Utah

It was bound to happen sooner rather than later. HB76 has been introduced this legislative session and I’m not really sure if it’s going to pass.

Utah law already allows unlicensed open carry and concealed carry permits are easy to get. Of course there is some pant wetting going on by those who don’t understand Utah’s gun laws. “But this means criminals could legally carry concealed handguns!” Um, no, not if they can’t legally own a firearm. It would still be illegal for them.

House Minority Leader Jennifer Seelig frames her opposition as not wanting to “take any tools away from law enforcement,” referring to the daily background check that is run on all concealed carry permit holders. This is certainly a valid argument.

Even if the bill passes, I would presume that a majority of those who would carry a concealed weapon would still get the Utah permit because of Utah’s reciprocity/recognition with 35 other states.


Posted by on January 25, 2013 in Guns, Local, Politics, Self Defense


Utah’s Caucus System

Utah is a caucus state and I have to admit that I both like and dislike it.

Pros: It’s local. I enjoy going to my caucus and seeing people from my neighborhood. We get to sit down and talk about the issues that matter to our neighborhood. It truly is the most grassroots that you can get in the American political system.  It’s exclusive, meaning that you have to be affiliated with the party to attend its caucus meetings and be involved in the primary process.

Cons: It’s exclusive, meaning that you have to be affiliated with the party to attend its caucus meetings and be involved in the primary process.

In Utah, something like 12.5% of voters are registered Democrats, while 34% of voters are registered Republicans.  That leaves 53.5% of voters unaffiliated/independent.  As caucus attendance numbers dwindle, elected candidates come more from the fringe of each party, alienating a large portion of general election voters. How do you think Utah elected Mike Lee?! Mike Lee won the Republican nomination in a hotly contested Republican Primary 51%-49% (the final count was around 2,000 votes). He was carried by one ULTRA conservative county. When it came to the general election, Lee (R) defeated Granato (D) by almost a 2-1 margin. Many of Utah’s independents are Republican-leaning, and 7 times out of 10 candidate (R) is going to win in a national election.

In my discussions with many former-Republican-now-unaffiliated Utahn’s, they say that they left the party because of the caucus system. They feel that only “extreme” voices were “allowed” or “heard” and that anybody who questioned the “official party position” was ostracized. Because of the neighborhood affiliation of the caucus system, this created strain between neighbors and rather than potentially lose close friendships or create negative feelings within the neighborhood, they simply left the party (or no longer attend caucus meetings if they’re still affiliated).

So what’s the answer? Part of the answer is for more people to get involved in their caucus to make it truly more “representative” than it currently is. Of course, this means that people will have to care enough to get involved and to take the risk of arguing with neighbors. Until then, the more “extreme” elements of each party will continue to dominate Utah politics and we’ll continue electing jackasses like Mike Lee.

So please, if you live in Utah and you’re not affiliated with a party, get affiliated.  If you are affiliated, attend your local caucus meetings.

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Posted by on March 7, 2012 in Local, Politics


A Note to the Left and the Right

Something has touched a nerve today, I’m not quite sure why.  I was sitting her surfing the interwebz when I, again, became annoyed with the political establishment in this country.  For several generations now we, the citizenry, have sat back and allowed our government to become extremely top heavy on the Federal end.  In some cases, an extremely vocal minority have called for this increase.  In most cases, an extremely apathetic majority simply sat back and did nothing. 

We have lost something that the founders had enjoyed and come to love.  I do not say founders in meaning the Big Boys of American History, but rather the citizens who supported the Big Boys.  The citizens of the original 13 Colonies had spent almost 170 official historical years governing themselves.  Lifted from the source of all truth and knowledge, Wikipedia – “Each colony developed its own system of self government. The[y]… voted for their local and provincial government.” 

Yes, the early years of American history are not the golden age that many on the right try to paint them.  They are not, however, the historical arm pit that many on the left try to paint them.  It was imperfect, what with indentured servitude and slavery and what not, but it was 17th and 18th Century America.  The one thing they truly got right was local government and a citizenry active in that government. 

The British government started poking their nose in where the American Colonials felt it didn’t belong.  The Americans rebelled, declaring

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

The War was fought, the Americans won (with the help of the French who wanted to spite England), and The United States of America was quickly recognized as a nation by Morocco.  The people then set out to “form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity….”  On September 13, 1788 the United States Constitution was confirmed ratified and the country was set on its historical course. 

The US citizenry then fought another war about slavery and about independence in government.  For the better, the Union won the War of Northern Aggression and the United States stayed intact, to some extent.

So, what am I rambling on about?  “Federalism,” the great American experiment, has changed many, many times over the last 235 years (see the source of all truth and knowledge).  The authors of the Declaration of Independence were correct when they said, “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.”  In modern speak, Common sense (because “common sense” has replaced prudence) tells us that when a government has been around for a long time it shouldn’t be changed on a whim.  History also shows us that the people will mumble under their breath against government overreaching rather than giving up the entitlements granted while their rights are being trampled.” 

Sound familiar?  It should, because we are living it!  The Federal Government has gotten too large and overstepped its constitutionally set limitations.  Several factors are involved, not the least of which is the ever expanding authority of the Executive Branch, the weakness of the Legislative Branch and its relinquishment of authority to the Executive, and the failure of the citizenry to remember that the Judicial Branch exists outside of the Supreme Court (apart from viewing the Judicial as a tool to circumvent the Legislative).  I’m not saying that the Federal Department of Education can’t exist, but I am saying that it shouldn’t under our current Federal Constitution.  Do you want a Federal Department of Education?  Then convince your state legislature, or your Senator or Representative, to make a push for a Constitutional Convention or Constitutional Amendment so that the Federal Department of Education can be instituted properly. 

Your role as a citizen is to read and understand the United States Constitution and your State Constitution.  If you haven’t read them then you can’t know when your governments are overstepping their bounds and what their constitutional limitations are.  When you know these things then you can become active in your community and allow the private sector to do what the government has no authority to do. 

Governments are not all powerful.  If you think they should be, please remove yourself to Europe.  They favor that type of thinking over there.  The United States of America was founded on principles of INDIVIDUAL LIBERTY.  To members of the Right and the Left who have special interests, you are partially at fault for the current state of American politics.  The apathetic also hold responsibility, as do the political weasels who have found “public service” to be a career and not service. 

There, my rant is over.  Return to your regularly scheduled programming.


I Voted

Today is Primary Day in Utah, as in other parts of the country.  On the state-wide Republican ballot we’ve got two contenders for U.S. Senator: Mike Lee and Tim Bridgewater.  The former is trying to jump on the “anti-incumbent-I’m-a-real-Libertarian” bandwagon.  The second is a successful business owner.

Locally we’ve got one putz(R) running against the incumbent putz(R) for State House Rep.  I voted against the incumbent.  Not because she did a poor job but because she didn’t do ANYTHING that I felt was a worthy use of taxpayer time and money.  If the new guy wins, hopefully he’ll do better, or else he faces the ax.

Results later tonight.

The other interesting race in the state today is in Utah’s 2nd District, between incumbent Blue Dog Jim Matheson(D) and uber-leftist Claudia Wright(D).  She was hand picked by the unhappy Democrats in the district because, “well, Matheson just isn’t Blue enough” or some other stupid argument.  Matheson actually represents the 2nd District, and the State, pretty well.  The scary part about this primary is that it’s an “open” primary, meaning you don’t have to be a registered Democrat (which only 8.6% of Utahns are) to vote.  There have been rumors that Republican uber-conservatives will try to throw the vote to Wright because she’s beatable in November.  I hope that doesn’t happen, as I really like Matheson.

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Posted by on June 22, 2010 in Local, Politics


I Have the Answer

To all of the Californians who vacation in/move to Utah – STAY OUT!  We’re tired of being associated with this crap:

PARK CITY, Utah – A woman who says she relied on Google for walking directions in Utah that got her hit on a major roadway has filed a lawsuit against the Internet company claiming it supplied unsafe directions.


Posted by on June 3, 2010 in Eyes+Sharp Stick, Local, People


Tour the Salt Lake Temple

Well, virtually any way.

More than a century has passed since the public open house was held for the Salt Lake Temple, but an exhibit featuring a 1:32 scaled replica of the Mormon temple opened today that offers an open house experience of the magnificent building. Earlier this morning, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints unveiled the 88-inch tall, near-identical replica of the temple in the South Visitors’ Center on Temple Square. The permanent exhibit will be open to the public starting at 1:30 p.m. today.

This is a really cool idea!  The model is almost 7 feet tall and weighs between 600 and 800 pounds.  The Deseret News has a decent article on the project, with a neat slide show.  Even though I’ve been inside the Salt Lake Temple, I plan on heading downtown next week when I have a day off to check out the model.

If you’re interested, here’s a little background on the Temple.

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Posted by on May 29, 2010 in Local, Temples


Tea Parties

Not so astroturfy.

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Posted by on May 11, 2010 in Local, Politics, Really Excited

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