Arapahoe County part of history Left, right or ambidextrous, politically speaking, no one can deny that Arapah...
Believing is seeing? The common phrase “seeing is believing” captures the commonsense idea that what we believ...
Best holiday activity decision making method, why use approval voting? When your family or friend group tries...
Clarity and correcting Oct 24 Letter to the Editor submission While the results of the election will be known...
Endorsing Barnacle I endorse Libby Barnacle for Greenwood Village City Council because in the four years in wo...
Coffman will control growth I am concerned that Aurora and the entire metro area are growing too fast. I am ve...
Ron Phelps is the leadership Centennial needs For the past two months I’ve been walking neighborhoods for Ron...
Correction to Whitney Yeager article Thank you Jessica Roe for your email concerning my article that appeared...
Savvy Seniors need to know I happened to read Jim Miller’s (Savvy Senior) article on how to get social securit...
Ramblin’ around the corral with Bob Sweeney What a Bronco football game last Sunday, we won with the two...
Left, right or ambidextrous, politically speaking, no one can deny that Arapahoe County became part of history last week.
First-term Democrat congressman Jason Crow was elected in 2018 during a voter’s response to an unpopular president. More voters turned out in that election than ever in the history of the United States.
Now he is in one of 21 members in the history of the United States House of Representatives to present evidence to the Senate that the president should be removed from office.
Once the United States House of Representatives passed two historic Articles of Impeachment against President Donald Trump for allegedly orchestrating a campaign to withhold $391 million in military aid and a White House meeting for an announcement that Ukraine would start an investigation into his political rival. The first Article alleges that Trump abused his “powers of the Presidency when he solicited the interference of Ukraine in the 2020 United States presidential election. The second article charges Trump with “directing the unprecedented, categorical and indiscriminate defiance of subpoenas issued by the House as part of its impeachment inquiry.”
Crow said of his historic appointment by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, “I love our country and what it represents both at home and around the world. My time in military service taught me that our democracy exists because men and women stand up to fight for it. It’s a belief that drove me to serve my country in combat and led me to the halls of Congress. While there is no map for the challenges we face, my oath to support and defend the Constitution has guided me for years and will continue to guide me during this trial.
“As an impeachment manager, I will approach the process with the dignity and seriousness that it deserves, and advocate for a full and fair trial. It’s my solemn responsibility to lay out the facts and give the Senate – and the American people – confidence in the process. It is the duty of Congress to protect the rule-of-law and hold the president accountable. Our democracy depends on it.”
Besides Crow, the managers are Reps. Adam Shiff (CA), Jerry Nadler (NY), Zoe Lofgren (CA), Hakeem Jeffries (NY), Val Demings (FL) and Sylvia Garcia (TX). All managers have a background as lawyers, prosecutors or in law enforcement. Crow is a lawyer and also has a national security background as an Army Ranger.
Another connection to Arapahoe County and the history of Trump is Rep. Diana DeGette preceded over the formal vote to appoint the managers and send the Articles of Impeachment to the Senate. Jeffries was the keynote speaker at the annual Pat Schroeder Democratic dinner in 2018.
Colorado Senators Cory Gardner and Michael Bennet are judges at the trial. The question is whether they will fairly judge the evidence that is presented at the trial, or fall in-line with their political party. Gardner is up for reelection in November. The latest polls suggest he is “underwater” and may in fact be defeated. Bennet is not up for reelection this year.
As for the public, 70 percent want witnesses to testify during the trial which started Tuesday. It will take 51 Senators to vote to approve witnesses but two-thirds of Senators present to approve the removal of Trump from office.
The common phrase “seeing is believing” captures the commonsense idea that what we believe to be true should follow from some form of credible information or direct experience. All too often in our current charged political world, we operate on this phrase flipped around, as if “believing is seeing.” That is, our preexisting political beliefs and affiliations, often infused with strong emotion, govern what information we pay attention to and accept as true. This is a very human trait that can be found across the political spectrum. A particularly good example can be found in the recent column entitled “Impeachment idiocy-what’s next?” (The Villager, December 26). The author states, as if it is a fact, that President Trump was “temporarily withholding aid to Ukraine … until he was sure that the new Ukrainian president wasn’t as corrupt as the last one …”. To my knowledge, there is not a shred of evidence to back up that statement.
In fact, what President Trump’s motivations were is an important issue that the current Congressional investigation is trying to ascertain and make clear to the public.
Another example in the same column is the statement that “When Ukrainian law enforcement began investigating this (Hunter Biden’s position at Burisma), Joe Biden threatened to withhold US aid unless the prosecutor was fired,” followed by the accusation that Joe Biden was doing the bribing. According to multiple news sources and interviews with many people knowledgeable about the situation, this is simply not true. Joe Biden was one of many officials, including those from our State Department , the European Union, and the International Monetary Fund, calling for the prosecutor to be fired because he was being too soft on the rampant corruption in the country. This was the position of the US Government. Biden’s threat to withhold funds from Ukraine was actually in the service of wanting stronger anti-corruption measures, not to protect his son. For good detailed accounts of this complicated situation, please see relevant articles in the September 25, 2019 edition of Forbes, the November 10, 2019 edition of the New York Times, or Bloomberg News on May 6, 2019.
As we all make our way through these fraught times, it is incumbent on all of us, across the political spectrum, to make sure that we are not simply accepting what our emotions or our party leaders or our social media feeds are telling us is true. For the sake of our future, we must challenge ourselves to make sure we are evaluating the best evidence possible and using good critical thinking skills to reach conclusions and to promote sound policy. This is the hard task of good citizenship and true love of country.
Thomas MichaelsGreenwood Village
“Seeing is believing” or is it “believing is seeing”? With the proliferation of fake news, particularly from previously trustworthy print and digital news organizations, what one “sees” or “believes” in the news must be taken with a grain of salt.
In a recent letter to the editor (adjacent), it was stated that I put believing ahead of seeing. The first example was President Trump “temporarily withholding aid to Ukraine until he was sure that the new Ukrainian president wasn’t as corrupt as the last one.” What do I see to make me believe?
According to The Guardian, in a 2015 article, Ukraine was indeed corrupt. They ran this headline, “Welcome to Ukraine, the most corrupt nation in Europe.” This is when Trump was running for President and learning who he would be dealing with if he won the election.
Trump, in a speech on October 13, 2016, weeks before the election, made his views on corruption quite clear.
“It’s a global power structure that is responsible for the economic decisions that have robbed our working class, stripped our country of its wealth, and put that money into the pockets of a handful of large corporations and political entities.”
It’s only logical that his Make America Great Again campaign was focused on corruption, foreign and domestic, and he wasn’t going to allow billions of US taxpayer dollars to flow to a foreign country only to enrich corrupt individuals and entities.
For comparison, recall that the Obama-Biden administration withheld lethal military aid to Ukraine, the same thing Trump is accused of, after Russia annexed Crimea in 2014. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko came to Washington pleading for weapons to defend his country. Addressing a joint session of Congress, he said Ukraine appreciated the nonlethal assistance it received, but reminded “one cannot win a war with blankets.”
Perhaps this was part of Obama’s “Russian reset” or “more flexibility” he promised Putin after his 2012 reelection. But I don’t recall any efforts to impeach Obama over HIS motivations in withholding aid to Ukraine. That was reserved only for Trump.
As to the writer’s second point, Joe Biden’s statement about the Ukrainian prosecutor, let’s look at the background. Biden’s son Hunter was kicked out of the Navy after testing positive for cocaine, then joined the board of Ukrainian natural gas company Burisma in 2014. This was despite having no experience in the energy industry, not speaking Ukrainian, nor having any other qualifications to serve on such a board other than the fact that his father, the vice-president, was Obama’s “point man” on Ukraine after the Crimea annexation.
Burisma was enmeshed in corruption allegations, serious enough that Ukraine’s prosecutor general initiated an investigation into the company. Such an inquiry would likely expose Hunter Biden, receiving $50,000 per month for serving on the board with no relevant qualifications.
In a 2018 speech for Foreign Affairs, Biden bragged,
So they said they had–they were walking out to a press conference. I said, nah, I’m not going to–or, we’re not going to give you the billion dollars. They said, you have no authority. You’re not the president. The president said–I said, call him. (Laughter.) I said, I’m telling you, you’re not getting the billion dollars. I said, you’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here in, I think it was about six hours. I looked at them and said: I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money. Well, son of a b-tch. (Laughter.) He got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time.
The letter to the editor argued that Biden wanted the prosecutor fired because he wasn’t tough enough on corruption and that the US media agreed. I’m sure the New York Times, which hasn’t had a nice thing to say about Trump since he announced his candidacy, would back this perspective. As would Bloomberg News, which promised to refrain from investigating any Democrat presidential candidates.
Rather than asking a newspaper, ask the prosecutor himself, Viktor Shokin, why he was fired. According to The Hill on April 1, 2019,
Shokin told me in written answers to questions that, before he was fired as general prosecutor, he had made “specific plans” for the investigation [into Burisma] that “included interrogations and other crime-investigation procedures into all members of the executive board, including Hunter Biden.”
That’s what I “see” and “believe” regarding Trump’s reasons for temporarily withholding aid to Ukraine compared to Biden demanding a quid pro quo from the Ukrainian president. As to Trump targeting a political opponent, there were 20 plus Democrat candidates seeking the party nomination at the time of Trump’s phone call with the Ukrainian president. Joe Biden was one of many with no assurance then, or now, that he would be his party’s nominee.
And as to impeachable offenses, when the witnesses testifying before the House Intelligence Committee were asked to name any crimes or impeachable offenses that Trump committed, they were all silent. The State Department bureaucrats and the four liberal law professors could cite no high crimes or misdemeanors.
Despite allegations, there was never a press conference announcing an investigation into the Bidens and the Ukrainian aid was released. No quid, no quo.
Ultimately the US Senate will decide whether or not to impeach President Trump and voters will be the ultimate arbiters of “good citizenship and true love of country” next November when they cast their votes for president. I thank the letter writer for engaging on this important topic.
Brian JoondephVillager Columnist
Iran has been terrorizing and killing people for decades. They especially hate us as anyone would know by watching the frequent mass demonstrations in Tehran with signs saying “Death to America” and “Kill The Great Satan.” These demonstrations are not new and have also gone on for decades. What thinking American could not believe that Iran is our mortal enemy and wants to destroy us? This is not new and was apparent in 1979 when Iran captured and took 66 Americans hostage. Our president then, Democrat Jimmy Carter, did nothing to prevent this disaster and when the Iranians saw how weak he was they held onto the hostages for 444 days. The only reason they were ever released is that in 1980, Republican Ronald Reagan was elected in a landslide with 489 electoral votes. One of his main campaign promises was to get the hostages released no matter what. Knowing they now faced a strong Republican president, the Iranians released the hostages minutes after President Reagan was sworn in.
Since that time, things have gotten progressively worse with Iran expanding it terrorist regimes all over the Middle East. In that process their main instrument has been Quds General Soleimani who was responsible for the killing of over 500 Americans. Thank goodness President Trump took this killer out so that he wouldn’t kill again. Who could ever believe anything other than Soleimani would continue to kill Americans?
The answer to that question, of course, is the Democrat Party and it’s supporters. Democrat presidential hopeful Joe Biden called killing Soleimani a debacle. According to the Wall Street Journal Biden would “double down on the flawed Obama diplomacy that provided Iran with cash for its campaign of Mideast destabilization.” Of course, that cash helped Soleimani direct the killing of hundreds of Americans. Do we really want a president whose strategy is to try and buy off those people who are trying to kill us?
Democrat U.S. House leader Nancy Pelosi and most of her fellow Democrats have passed a resolution saying that President Trump must get permission from Congress to fight back against Iran. Huh? Can you imagine our commander -in-chief asking Congress for permission to protect Americans from an imminent threat? That request would be in the newspaper the next day and by the time Congress discussed it, hundreds maybe thousands of Americans would be dead. Do we really want another 9/11? Are we ok having Democrats like Pelosi trying to stop the president from protecting us?
One Democrat, U.S. House Representative llhan Omar even went so far as to say that “Iran could threaten Trump hotels world wide” which could cause more American deaths. Do we really want someone like this in the U.S. House who highlights the possibility of Iran killing more Americans when they travel?
Incredibly, the Democrat party and their possible candidates for president have been against taking any action to protect Americans from attacks by Iran. Not one of them has offered up a plan to deal with Iranian terrorism that threatens not only Americans, but the entire Middle East. Thus the Democrat party has become Iran’s most important American asset and will become more valuable if the Democrats get complete control of our government. Let’s hope the American voters reject such cowardice as they did in 1980 when they overwhelmingly elected Republican Ronald Reagan. God help us all if voters don’t reject the appeasement of terrorists by the Democrats.
Charles NewtonHighlands Ranch
When your family or friend group tries to decide on a holiday activity, how do you do it without causing more stress? Will you go to a holiday market to see the lights, or go ice skating? What about the mall, or snowshoeing?
Usually, the decision is made through a show of hands, letting everybody vote for more than one activity if they want to. How and why does this method, also known as Approval Voting, work better than our current politically divisive, brutal, single vote per person method?
Too often with a single vote, the voter has to be strategic with their precious vote – avoid wasting the vote on a spoiling “loser”. If you can only pick one, and you want an outdoor activity, you might go with skating instead of snowshoeing. If you still need a gift for Aunt Martha the mall might work better, but you might be willing to join the fresh air folks and go to the outdoor holiday market.
With more than one vote, the voter can endorse the moderate center consensus activities AND express a true preference that may not have others’ support.
People also can reach consensus by eliminating “extreme” alternatives. But if we eliminate others’ preferences rather than advocate for our true preferences, we get stuck in the rut of the mediocre. We do the same old boring safe activity and never discover something new.
Maybe this is the Holiday Spirit – build consensus rather than trying to eliminate what we consider to be undesirable extremes. I urge you to use Approval Voting this holiday season. Happy holidays!
Unlike the Clinton impeachment, which convicted a Democrat president of committing perjury (which is a crime), the current impeachment has relied on the magician’s sleight of hand to try and convince the American people that another crime has been committed. U. S. House leader, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, has started the show by authorizing head wizard, Democrat Adam Schiff, to have exclusive star chamber interviews with supposed “witnesses” about a well publicized phone call that President Trump made. These interviews, which included a secret whistleblower, were closed to Republicans. Also, according to the WSJ, Schiff obtained phone records, perhaps illegally, on Republicans and a journalist so he could further this attempt to find something, anything that would prove his case. This was much different than Clinton’s impeachment where the top Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee praised the Republicans for conducting a fair and bipartisan impeachment.
These magical proceedings produced the desired result of finding grounds to impeach Trump. They, of course, have no connection to the U.S. Constitution which says in Article II section 4 “The president, vice president and all civil officers of the United States shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.” This standard is not met by the “trumped” up fabrications conjured up by the Democrat leaders of the U.S. House of Representatives.
However, Pelosi’s and Schiff’s magic spell has successfully hypnotized most of their fellow Democrats. This spell has been able to blind many Democrats as to what the Constitution actually says and has captivated all the Colorado U. S. House Democrats, including my representative, Jason Crow. Sadly, I believed his campaign line that he would not become a Pelosi clone and would be able to think and act independently. Not. Hopefully, all thinking Coloradoans will remember their representative’s vote come election time.
Thank goodness there are still a lot of thinking Americans who will go to the polls next year. At that time let’s hope they bring down the curtain on the Pelosi magic show and all those who engaged in this historic flop.
While the results of the election will be known by the time this is published, and nothing that I can write will make a difference in that campaign, it is still important to correct the record when someone gets it wrong. And the submitter got it all wrong in his Oct 24 Letter to the Editor (Oct 24; Stuart Brann, “Clarity for Candice Moon”).
There is so much mistruth and inaccurate information given, that I must presume that the writer’s attempt to provide “clarity” isn’t intentional libelous, but instead that Mr. Brann is just confused or received bad information when he talked to the Moons.
Here are two points on how much Mr. Brann statements are wrong:
1. Mr. Brann has the “employment” scenario all wrong. First, in 2007, I was fully employed. Second, my wife was never hired by nor worked for Mr. Moon’s company, MBJ, Inc. There was no “mutual acquaintance,” who asked Mr. Moon to employ either of us.
2. Mr. Moon’s company wasn’t in business in 2007 because it was dissolved in 2005, later reformed in 2010, and then shown delinquent in 2012 (according to SOS filings; company ID 19941086807).
Finally, it should be understood that Mr. Brann is an active supporter of and has financially contributed multiple times to Candice Moon’s 2015 and 2019 campaigns. So, based on the number of his inaccurate statements, I choose to believe that Mr. Brann is either confused or received bad information from the Moons.
Ron PhelpsGreenwood Village
I endorse Libby Barnacle for Greenwood Village City Council because in the four years in working with her on the city’s Planning and Zoning Commission, I have found her to be interested, knowledgeable, articulate and honest. She works well with Councilmembers, Village Commissioners as well as city staff and communicates well with and advocates for the citizens she has been appointed to represent.
Steve GoldmanGreenwood Village District 2 resident and current Planning and Zoning Commissioner
Brian has served the City of Greenwood Village for six years and has held positions on the Board of Adjustments and Appeals (BOAA) and the Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z). This experience has provided him an opportunity to understand City processes and develop working relationships with a number of departments. I have worked with him on P&Z for over a year while he provided effective guidance to the Commission as its Chairman. During this period Brian has reviewed and administered a number of development cases while demonstrating a fair and balanced approach. He understands the key priorities of the Comprehensive Plan and has worked to maintain and enhance Greenwood Village. I strongly support Brian’s candidacy for City Council.
Rich EastonMember P&Z Commission
Steve GoldmanGreenwood Village District 2resident and current Planningand Zoning Commissioner
“We believe you will be a strong advocate for the fire service of Aurora” (October 2, 2019) – The Aurora Firefighters Protective Association has announced their endorsement of Curtis Gardner for Aurora City Council At-Large in this November’s municipal election.
In a statement, the Local 1290 Board said “On behalf of Aurora Firefighters Protective Association Local 1290, we are pleased to inform you that you have been endorsed in your race for Aurora City Council Member At-Large. After careful consideration, we believe you will be a strong advocate for us and our brothers and sisters in the fire service.”
Curtis Gardner has made public safety a priority issue in his campaign for City Council, along with economic development, quality of life and transportation issues.
“I am humbled and honored by the endorsement of the Aurora Firefighters Local 1290,” said Curtis Gardner. “When I am on City Council, I’ll be an advocate for the men and women of Aurora Fire Rescue in working to ensure they have competitive pay and the appropriate training & equipment to serve Aurora residents.”
Curtis Gardner has now been endorsed by the Aurora Firefighters Local 1290, the Aurora Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 49 and the Aurora Police Association.
For More Information, please contact:
Curtis for Aurora, email@example.com, www.curtisforaurora.com
Jimmy AllenAurora Firefighters Local 1290, Goverment Affairs
I am concerned that Aurora and the entire metro area are growing too fast. I am very worried that all of this growth will hurt our quality of life here in Aurora. You can see the impacts of growth all around Aurora with more traffic, less open space and not enough resources to take care of our streets, sidewalks and older neighborhoods. Aurora just can’t keep growing like this.
This will be a major challenge for Aurora’s next mayor. We need a mayor who will balance growth with concerns from across Aurora. We also need a mayor who knows how to work with other communities to make sure that their growth does not hurt our community. That’s why I am voting for Mike Coffman this election day.
I know that Mike has the experience and vision to make sure that growth is better managed in Aurora. Mike wants to balance new growth with more open space, parks, trees and trails. He plans to improve and expand our road capacity and fix the potholes. He wants to use technology to help manage traffic, so we are not sitting at red lights in our idling cars. And Mike will pay attention to Aurora’s older neighborhoods by working with existing residents to revitalize our communities.
I am proud to say I will vote for Mike for Aurora mayor on November 5. By saying yes to Mike, we will have a mayor who will help Aurora grow in the right ways and protect our quality of life. Mike is the right person to be our next mayor, will you join me and vote for Mike Coffman for mayor of Aurora.
We have known Mike Coffman for more than 20 years. We knew Mike when he represented Aurora in Congress and in state House and Senate. We knew Mike when he served in Iraq, bringing democracy and order to that nation. Mike is one of the most dedicated public servants we have ever met. He has served his community, state and country in so many ways. But these are not the reasons we are supporting Mike for Mayor of Aurora. We are supporting Mike because we know he has the skills and experience needed to tackle the difficult issues facing our city. Violent crime is increasing. Traffic is much worse. And we need to find a better way to manage growth so it does not hurt our quality of life. Mike has a long record of working through tough issues. If it weren’t for Mike, the Aurora VA hospital likely would never have been completed. He made sure that our veterans received the care they deserve. Mike was ranked as one of the most bipartisan members of Congress, showing how he works to solve problems. That’s what Aurora needs in its next mayor. So please join us in voting for Mike for Mayor.
Lynne & Bo CottrellAurora
Aurora has a great opportunity this Election Day to make sure our city is ready for its future. That’s because Mike Coffman is running for mayor, and I believe he is the right choice to address the challenges ahead for our community.
I know my family and my neighbors are tired of all the traffic in Aurora. That’s because there’s been too much growth in our City and in nearby Denver, and our roads and highways just cannot keep up. Mike wants to prioritize Aurora’s budget to make sure roads are repaired and maintained and to speed up widenings and improvements across the city. Mike also wants to use new technologies that better manage traffic by making red lights and intersections adapt to congestion.
In addition, Mike has said he will make sure that growth doesn’t overtake Aurora’s great quality of life. He will prioritize parks, open space, sidewalks and trails to make Aurora more pedestrian, and family, friendly. He will work with neighboring mayors to make sure that transportation issues are addressed regionally and that we make the best use of transit and light rail to speed up our commutes.
If you want to see our roads improve and traffic congestion reduced, vote Mike Coffman for Aurora Mayor on November 5, 2019.
Aurora is a thriving community, which, on balance, is headed, in the right direction. But we face serious challenges. The violent crime rate increased 76% between 2014 and 2018. WalletHub ranked Aurora as the 20th worst city in the nation in which to drive in 2018. The cost of housing in Aurora has priced many young families out of home ownership.
Aurora needs a mayor who can make a difference and address these growing challenges head on. That’s Mike Coffman. Mike not only has deep Aurora roots and connections at the local, state and federal level upon which he can capitalize, he has a vision for Aurora’s future.
Mike will stand by our law enforcement and give them the resources they need to reduce the crime rate, safeguard our schools and protect our neighborhoods.
He has a detailed plan to address Aurora’s traffic and roads: region-wide planning, smart technologies to streamline traffic flows, and expediting much-needed road expansions, such as Gun Club Road.
Mike will work to promote transportation and neighborhood-friendly development and redevelopment projects that expand affordable housing opportunities, while balancing the need for more parks and open space.
Mike Coffman is the candidate for mayor who can make a difference for Aurora on day one.
Between 2014 and 2018, according to FBI data, the violent crime rate increased 76% in Aurora. Aurora is still “safer” than many cities, but let’s not turn a blind eye toward the trendlines. Rising crime rates affect Aurora citizens in very tangible ways: violent crimes victimize real people and negatively impact our property values.
Aurora’s next mayor needs an excellent working relationship with law enforcement to safeguard our schools, protect our neighborhoods, and bring down the crime rate. That’s Mike Coffman. Mike is endorsed by both the Aurora and Arapahoe County chapters of the Fraternal Order of Police because he will work to ensure law enforcement gets the resources they need.
Mike will also work to protect the rule of law and he opposes so-called “sanctuary city” policies.
Aurora citizens deserve safe schools and neighborhoods. Strong leadership that is committed to protecting the rule of law and standing by our law enforcement can make a difference. When it comes to public safety, one candidate for Aurora stands above the rest: Mike Coffman.
Aurora is in the midst of a pivotal mayoral race. Who we elect matters. While Aurora is thriving, our community faces growing challenges: worsening traffic, escalating crime rates, and unbridled growth.
Aurora needs a Mayor who can make a difference on these and other challenges facing the city. That’s Mike Coffman. His experience and vision are unparalleled, and Mike’s relationships – at the federal, state and local government levels and with Aurora business and community leaders – mean he is uniquely equipped to tackle tough challenges.As a businessman, elected official and military veteran, Mike Coffman has experience working within and leading large organizations. That’s important. It’s one thing to propose plans and ideas. In the world of government, that’s the easy part. It’s quite another thing to know how to get those plans and ideas approved. Mike Coffman not only has bold ideas to tackle our public safety, transportation and growth challenges (see www.MikeforAuroraMayor.com); he has the tools and know-how to get them done. As the Gazette recently opined in its endorsement of Mike Coffman, “few cities will have an opportunity to elect leadership this well-qualified.” Indeed. Aurora voters shouldn’t pass up this opportunity. Vote Mike Coffman for Mayor.
In the campaign for the Centennial District 1 election, there have been a number of misstatements by the candidate opposing the re-election of Councilmember Candace Moon. This is an effort by an observer outside that campaign to offer some clarity. Candace Moon was not the sponsor of the now defunct proposed ordinance regarding Motor Vehicle Parking on private property. It was the work of a subcommittee appointed by the Mayor. Candace Moon was not a member. After it had died, however, Candace, dutifully informed our residents of its status. She and other members of council had seen that the proposed ordinance was defective, and would not second the motion. This, in effect, killed the proposed ordinance.
Her challenger’s employment appear to be a second item of concern. In 2007 this was public knowledge and well known to the Moon family; so much so, that mutual acquaintances approached Candace Moon’s husband to ask for assistance in providing the Phelps’ family with employment. Mr Moon was able to hire a member of the Phelps family for his training and development company (MBJ, Inc.). The following April, less than six months after election, Phelps resigned and moved away from Colorado. Phelps knew the challenges he would face if he ran for public office. He had been told. He chose to run for public office knowing what personal challenges he would face. In this day, it is a mantra that one must be ready and prepared for job change.
Asking the electorate to vote for a candidate is not to be taken lightly. Phelps did not take his oath to heart. His actions caused undue delay in the administration of Centennial government. There is no guarantee it won’t happen again. With Phelps’ decision to move, Centennial was again faced with a vacant seat in District 1. He had left citizens in District 1 under-served, and the city had to decide whether to hold another expensive election, or find a qualified person to fill the vacated seat. Fortunately, the city was able to persuade Vorry Moon to fill the vacant seat, which he served honorably and selflessly, despite a negative effect on his personal income. In 2011, Vorry Moon went on to run for re-election and won the vote in the 2011 campaign and served a second full term (2015) without incident. Candace Moon is the candidate for re-election who has shown that she can balance the rigors of life, employment demands and the pressure of responsible representation of Centennial District 1. She deserves full community support, not negative, unsupported attack.
Stuart R. BrannCentennial
I have the pleasure of serving with Libby on the Planning and Zoning Commission. As a fellow native of Greenwood Village and active member of the community, I am pleased to endorse Libby for City Council. Her vision aligns with mine and many citizens of Greenwood Village to preserve the parks and trails, to maintain high standards for development, to ensure growth does not adversely impact our culture. She is detailed, candid and loyal to her constituents. She will be a great representative for District 3 and for the rest of our community.
Paul WiesnerGreenwood Village District 1 residentand current Planning and Zoning Commissioner
I know Libby personally and have served with her on our Planning and Zoning Commission for the last two years, so I have seen how deeply she cares for Greenwood Village. The combination of intelligence and heart that she brings to her decision-making makes her the right person to serve on City Council. Please vote for Libby Barnacle for Greenwood Village City Council.
Rasmani BhattacharyaGreenwood Village District 4 residentand current Planning and Zoning Commissioner
I have worked with Libby Barnacle for over a year on the GV Planning and Zoning Commission. Throughout this period she has demonstrated a strong commitment to the City of GV and has worked to preserve the outstanding qualities of our City. Libby has shown to have a logical mind and aptitude for getting at the key issues brought to us from a wide range of development applicants. Her educational background and experience of over four years on P&Z well positions her to be a great asset to represent District 3 on the City Council. I strongly endorse her candidacy.”
Rich EastonGreenwood Village District 2 residentand current Planning and Zoning Commissioner
Libby has my endorsement for Greenwood Village City Council, District 3. She is honest, pragmatic, and insightful and has shown through all of her actions that she has our community’s best interests in mind. She has demonstrated her commitment to look into our community’s concerns and needs, and is willing to examine the issues and listen closely to the public’s questions and suggestions. A vote for Libby is a vote for our Village!”
Aliza RothmanOrchard Hills
Libby Barnacle is an outstanding candidate for Greenwood Village City Council, District 3. Libby is endorsed by George Lantz, District 3 Council Member and Mayor Pro Tem; former District 3 Council Members Charlie Hazlehurst, Allan Stone, and Bette Todd; and former District 2 Council Member Mike de Chadenedes .
As a Planning and Zoning (P & Z) Commissioner, Libby has distinguished herself as a strong representative of the citizens of Greenwood Village. She was a passionate advocate for residents, opposing high density development at Orchard and I-25. Libby consistently spoke and voted against changing the Comprehensive Plan in a way that would increase traffic and forever alter the suburban character of the Village. She supported sending the proposed Comprehensive Plan changes to a vote of the people, and further served on the Save Our Village Steering Committee.
Mayor Ron Rakowsky publically credited Libby with an “eagle eye” after she spotted questionable signatures on a petition of support for a hotel project being presented at a P & Z meeting. Libby knew her constituents well enough to recognize some signatures did not make sense, and she was not afraid to speak up and question the developer. As it turned out, several Greenwood Village residents had, in fact, been the victim of forged signatures.
“Libby’s passion for the community, experience as a prosecutor, and her work on the Planning and Zoning Commission, make her the ideal advocate for our community,” says George Lantz Greenwood Village Mayor Pro Tem.
Born and raised in Greenwood Village, Libby understands our Village is a special place. She knows the history of the Village and the importance of quality of life to Village residents. Libby has a proven record and is a trusted leader. Greenwood Village needs Libby Barnacle’s energy and ethics on City Council.
Former Greenwood Village City Council Members,Charlie HazlehurstAllan StoneBette ToddMike de Chadenedes
Part of what informs my vote for Mayor of Aurora is the specificity of a candidate’s plans and proposals. It’s for this reason I am casting my vote for Mike Coffman. His plans transcend typical political platitudes and demonstrate thoughtful solutions for Aurora.
Take reducing commute times, for instance. This is an issue that is relevant to almost every Aurora resident. Coffman proposes to implement cutting-edge, smart city technologies, such as “adaptive traffic signaling”. This entails “adjusting the time intervals of the traffic signals based on real-time traffic conditions instead of by a synchronized system that is relatively inflexible,” as described by his website. What a great idea!
Coffman also proposes to work with other metro area mayors to develop and implement plans to address traffic congestion through regional solutions. This will require working with federal, state and local governments, stakeholders that Coffman – and Coffman alone – has experience working with.
One candidate for Mayor has the experience, vision and plans that can make a difference for Aurora: Mike Coffman.
As a U. S Marine Corps Vietnam Era veteran, I believe Jerry Valdes is the clear choice for re-election to Littleton City Council District 2. I have attended or viewed many of the Council’s meetings and he has always been prepared and knowledgeable on the issues at hand. He is a goal setter and keeps his mind on those goals. Not only does he have a list of what he will continue to do for Littleton, he has a list of what he has already done. He played a major role in getting the cross walks installed at several intersections along Littleton Boulevard. As a Littleton resident of 33 years, he served on the Littleton Planning Commission for 12 years and is an active volunteer at several Littleton public schools. Jerry is a proven and prudent leader. Re-elect Jerry Valdes for City Council District 2 on November
For the past two months I’ve been walking neighborhoods for Ron and talking to friends and neighbors about their vision for our City. Most people comment that they want to see Centennial return to its roots of limited government. This is what we were all promised when Centennial was incorporated.
That’s what Ron stands for — a government that focuses on providing services we need like maintaining our roads and public safety and less on regulations that would ban parking recreational vehicles in residential neighborhoods. Ron’s opponent, Candace Moon, in fact sponsored the latest discussion on banning recreation vehicles which does more to divide us as a community then bring us together.
In one of her greater ironies, Council member Moon has been critical of Ron for vacating his council seat in 2010 after a hard-fought election in 2009 where Ron beat her husband, Vorry. Ron had to move out of state for work after he lost his job and Vorry Moon was appointed to fill his council seat. Most of us would be gracious under these circumstances. Not Council Member Moon. For her, it’s just another opportunity to attack a neighbor.
Like many of my friends and neighbors, I’ve woken up one day without a job and wondered how I was going to pay the mortgage and support my family. We need people in leadership like Ron that understand the ups and downs of life and seek to lift up their neighbors, rather than bring them down.
I’m glad Ron is back and running for city council! I’m proud to walk for him and support him. I hope you’ll join me in voting for Ron Phelps!!
Over the past half billion years the earth’s climate has changed significantly a number of times. These climate changes were driven by volcanic eruptions and lava flows that released vast quantities of carbon and warmed the planet, or by carbon capture mechanisms, e.g., extensive forestation, that removed carbon from the atmosphere and cooled the planet. The geologic record tells us that five periods of mass extinction of plants and animals occurred during this time. These processes took many millennia to play out. Currently we are in a period when the planet should be cooling, with a repeat of an ice age, maybe 10,000 years from now. However, human activities are pumping carbon into the atmosphere and thus we are warming rather than cooling. When people ask me, “How much climate change is due to human activity”, I answer “100%”, otherwise our planet would be cooling.
There is no question that the industrial revolution improved our standard of living but the issue is will that continue to be the case. Prior to the industrial revolution, CO2 concentrations (the principle greenhouse gas) were around 200 to 280 ppm. Today they are above 400 ppm. It was in the late 1800s that scientists first discovered the relationship between greenhouse gases, CO2 in particular, and the warming of our planet. The more fossil fuel use, the more greenhouse gasses, the more warming of the planet. There is no scientific question that human activity is warming our planet.
It is important to understand that carbon buildup in the atmosphere can occur rather rapidly, as it is presently, but carbon removal from the atmosphere is a very long term process. So the carbon we have and will put into our atmosphere will be with us for centuries and significantly impact the lives of our children and generations to come. This is the reason that we must act now to reduce carbon emissions.
The warming of our earth’s atmosphere and oceans means more extreme weather events, including greater droughts and floods and the melting of sea ice and glaciers. Coastal communities are already being impacted and others are threatened with sea level rise and extreme weather. As the oceans absorb more CO2 they become more acidic and this threatens our marine food web and eventually most sea life. Today we are seeing how more severe heat waves are killing people, and rising average temperatures are eliminating critical habitats of animals and plants.
Some good things are beginning to happen. Use of renewable energy, solar and wind, is on the rise. Reliance on fossil fuels like coal is declining in the US. Other global players such as China and India are slowly following suit. Production of electric vehicles is increasing. These and other actions are economically driven and this will continue as most strategies to address climate change are economic winners, producing a more sustainable economy and social well-being. However, even with these actions, the United Nations (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) indicates not enough is being done to reduce carbon concentrations in our atmosphere and emissions are still going up. Furthermore, they tell us we have but one decade to change this or the consequences will be much more severe by 2050 and beyond.
Given that our current rate of pumping carbon into our atmosphere will certainly affect generations to come after us and could eventually doom our existence, why is more not being done? If we are honest we might say, “the affects take a long time to play out and most of us are happy with the way we live and don’t want to change all that much”. Okay, I get that, but the problem is deeper than that. Today, much of our government policy, and social, economic and institutional drivers are based on continued fossil fuel consumption. This is especially true because of the efforts of the fossil fuel industry, their lobbyists, and too many political leaders’ efforts to misinform; promoting false information on climate change that is not based in science.
The drivers promoting use of fossil fuels are both ubiquitous and insidious. Take our agroindustry for example. The mono-crop farming of corn, soybeans, wheat, etc. is built and reliant on the use of fossil fuels to fertilize, control insects and weeds, feed livestock and transport products long distances. To modify this arrangement will require not only that we farm differently, but also that we shop differently, and that supermarkets acquire food differently (locally and seasonally), and this means that we will eat differently. This is just one example of what we must change.
To combat the climate crisis that is around the corner we must each begin by educating ourselves on the subject and then communicate our knowledge and the urgency of finding solutions to as many people as possible. We must elect people who are curious, interested in understanding climate change, and willing to take decisive action to move away from our addiction to fossil fuels. We must be attentive and measure how we are progressing and hold others, especially elected officials and enterprise leaders, accountable for their actions. Above all, we must act and not be deterred or delayed by wishing for the status quo. Standing still or returning to the past are not options.
Bob DoyleGreenwood Village
At the Sentinel-sponsored City Council candidate forum on October 8, every ward-level challenger (Alison Coombs, Juan Marcano, and Bryan Lindstrom) expressed their support of taxpayer-funded “public enterprises” such as municipal broadband and municipal banks.
To be clear, what they are proposing is that the city gets into businesses that aren’t the job of the city, that it knows nothing about, and that should not be government-controlled.
Let’s look at them individually.
Many small cities and towns are experimenting with municipal broadband today. Less than half of these systems are able to cover their operating expenses, much less turn a profit. Provo, Utah, spent $39 million on public broadband, only to eventually sell to Google for one dollar. In Burlington, Vermont, excessive borrowing resulted in their credit rating being reduced to almost junk bond status. (Bear in mind, Aurora recently reached Moody’s AAA rating – the highest quality and lowest credit risk possible.)
Two candidates pointed to Longmont’s NextLight service as a model, which was introduced during a strong economy to fill a demand in an underserved market. What happens when the economy softens? Is there a need in Aurora not already served with reliable, fast Internet? And when you compare Longmont’s scant 29 square miles to Aurora’s 170 square-mile footprint, it’s easy to see there’s hardly a comparison.
Now, let’s consider municipal banking.
As I mentioned in the forum, municipal banking is not a new idea in America. They have been attempted many times over the last 200 years. All but one have failed. They were always marked by corruption.
Besides, it’s not cheap to start a bank. It would require billions of dollars in start-up capital, which would come directly from the pockets of taxpaying citizens. With the government in control, politics would undoubtedly drive lending decisions to fund pet projects, and direct dollars to a few at the expense of taxpayers. And every dollar we spend on this idea would be a dollar not spent on something else such as road maintenance, water acquisition, and public safety.
The Roosevelt Institute says it plainly on their website, “… municipal banks can advance and realize a broad set of redistributive and environmental objectives.” In other words, it’s about control, cronyism, and expanding government.
We do not know what the Aurora City CounciI will look like come November 6. What we do know is that it may include council members making risky bets with taxpayer money, if these are their ideas. We also know no major city has embraced municipal banking or municipal broadband.
And when California cities like L.A. and San Francisco turn ideas down, you had better think twice about just how extreme those ideas may be.
Françoise BerganAurora City Council Member, Ward VI
Our townhome community sits right across the street from The Streets at Southglenn mall. As a volunteer, Ron has given us a voice in the redevelopment plans calling for up to 1,600 additional apartments to be built where Sears and Macy’s now reside. On his own time, he has organized and led meetings to represent the neighborhoods and District 1’s interests in discussions with the developers and owners; and kept us apprised of updates at every turn. We know that Ron will fight to protect and preserve our neighborhood’s quality of life. In getting to know Ron, we’ve learned that he has been an active volunteer in the Centennial community ever since arriving here in 2003. He has served on several city and county citizen boards/committees and as a sheriff’s office victim advocate.
Join me and support a candidate who is a proven asset to our community – vote for Ron Phelps!
Richard A. KimblePresidentGlenn Oaks TownhouseOwners Association
I endorse Donna Johnston and Brian Strandes for City Council, District 3.
Over the last several years, the City Council has wrestled with several critical issues that will frame the future of our Village: Orchard Station; 5G Cellular standards; and the City-Wide Transportation Study are just a few great examples. Landmark issues such as these emphasize the importance of electing Councilmembers that speak for the people they represent. I’ve known and worked with both Donna Johnston and Brian Strandes on City matters for several years and I am confident they will be strong advocates for District 3. They will be accessible, approachable, and great stewards of the needs and desires of their constituents.
I invite you to join me in voting for Donna Johnston and Brian Strandes to represent District 3.
Steve MoranCity Council, District 3
Thank you Jessica Roe for your email concerning my article that appeared in the 9-26-19 edition of The Villager. I am including Bob, the publisher of The Villager, on this reply to ask him to post this correction in the next publication of The Villager to the following: although two people “died” at the 2013 Arapahoe High School shooting, more accurately ONE person was killed and the gunman then took his own life.
I appreciate you pointing this out to me. I sincerely hope you understand my intention was not to further victimize the families and friends of the Arapahoe HS shooting with semantics that lacked specificity on the cause of death, rather to emphasize the need for real change.
Thank you Bob and The Villager, for clarifying the meaning on the cause of death so that it is not misleading to your readers.
Please vote for Ron Phelps for Centennial City Council in District 1 on November 5th
I know Ron to be a conservative leader who will fight for our neighborhoods. He will follow limited government principles to guide his decisions and is a registered Republican. Ron is running against a liberal democrat who wants to grow government and place restrictions on private property. The Moons have created a dynasty by being on city council for 14 of the city’s 18 years of existence. That alone is reason to vote for Ron Phelps!
Ron knows that our individual rights are worth fighting for and that we – as citizens in Centennial – have to stand up and vote for to be represented by someone like Ron.
Join me and vote Republican for Ron Phelps!
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