It’s a special day here at The Western Word, so pop the cork!

This is the 2000th post/column/article/commentary on this blog. It all started way back on January 10, 2005, which is eight years, seven months, and 28 days ago.

Great googly moogly!

My first “post” was about football. My stats (I was on Google’s Blogger back then) showed that somebody actually read it. Then a few posts later somebody left a comment, and the rest is history.

My most read column of all time was the November 2010 “Politics 2012: 10 Most Vulnerable Senators” which was picked up by a few newspapers. A follow-up to that column came in second. The article about Barry Beach titled “The Killing at Poplar River” is the third most viewed column of all time.

Now several of my columns have been published in newspapers, and several people who work in the journalism world have blogs.

The Western Word has been read in over 100 countries. It is wild to think that a blog can even be read in 100 countries – just imagine the possibilities. Technology is powerful.

After all these years, my goal is to write something that makes people think a little, smile a little, and maybe wonder just a little.

Every weekend I look ahead to the upcoming week with great anticipation waiting to see what the world gives me to write about. It’s almost as much fun as Christmas morning…

Thank you,

Jackie M. (Mike) Brown



Commissioner Motl: A Dilemma

If you frequent the Montana Commissioner of Political Practices website very often like I do, you probably noticed that the new guy, Jonathan Motl, posted a sweet 525-word memo about his new job saying, “I love my job, it is the best job I have ever had.”

The first thing I thought after reading his memo was that he probably hasn’t had too many interesting jobs in his life and that he should probably get out of Helena more. That was right after I thought he should have spell-checked the memo. But nevertheless, Motl loves (or loved) his job as of June 24, 2013, and that is good news for Montanans in general and maybe for Democrats in particular. Continue reading

MT Politics: Just Being Really Nice Guys

The Montana Commissioner of Political Practices, James W. Murry, ruled on the Loney versus Moore, Blewett, Jacobson, and Boland complaint yesterday. It was not a big surprise to me that Commissioner Murry ruled against Loney.

To set this up a little, Republican Cleve Loney was running for reelection in Montana State House District 25. Democrat Tom Jacobson was his opponent. When the dust settled, Jacobson beat Loney by 74 votes out of the 5,068 votes cast. By the way, I am not a voter in this district.

One part of the complaint was about a state senator (Blewett) who was not on the ballot and wore a nametag, and a candidate (Jacobson) who was on the ballot and who did not wear a nametag passing out chips, candy, and water to people who were waiting in line to vote at the Expo Park in Great Falls (MT). The commissioner’s report stated there was no evidence they talked to people about voting or who to vote for or even campaigned.

Basically they were just being really nice guys.

Let’s get real. Continue reading

The Best of 2012

2012 was the best year yet here at The Western Word (TWW) – and I’ve been doing this since January 2005! Thank you!

It is always fun to see which columns are viewed the most and from where the columns are viewed – this past year people from 75 countries visited TWW – a special “shout-out” to one person in China who stopped by!

Listed below are the top five columns that received the most views in 2012 here at The Western Word.  Continue reading

Wednesday’s Political Potpourri

Hang on – It’s Wednesday and the date is 12-12-12. Wow! The weekend is starting to come into sight!

Today several issues in the news caught my attention like the Welch recount, Outside groups, Montana Senate 2012, Boehner’s leadership, McConnell’s poll, TWW Poll Results, Daines listens, and much more!

Continue reading