Never let your loyalty make a fool of you. – Unknown
Welcome to the big column to end the week, “Caught My Eye” (CME)!
If you are a first-time visitor, welcome! CME is the once a week column that is posted here every Friday morning. This is when I take a look at some of the stories I did not have time to write about during the week. There may be some sarcasm and pointed independent commentary so be warned!
Here are the topics that “Caught My Eye” this week:
Politics is no longer theater, it’s show business. So let’s put on the best show in town. – Frank Underwood (House of Cards)
It’s hump day – and a big day for political news! Today is another one of those days in which there are several major stories out there that I want to comment about – so it’s another “Political Odds & Ends” day!
Thanks to you, 2015 was another great year here at The Western Word (TWW)!
Special thanks to the 209 subscribers to TWW. By the way, you can be notified of new columns by subscribing – and it’s FREE. You can do that by clicking on the +Follow tab in the bottom right corner and entering your e-mail address, or by going to the subscribe box on the right side of the page and entering your e-mail address there.
It is always fun to see which columns are viewed the most and from where the columns are viewed. This past year people from 98 countries visited TWW. A special “shout-out” to the four people in China who stopped by! Besides the United States, the other top countries for visitors to TWW are Brazil and Canada.
In 2015, there were 311 new posts which bring the total archive of this blog to 2,730 posts.
It looks like we have a race for an open seat on the Montana Supreme Court brewing!
State District Court Judge Dirk Sandefur announced in February that he would run for the seat being vacated by Justice Patricia O. Cotter. You can view his website HERE.
Earlier this week, the Great Falls Tribune reported that Kristen Gustafson Juras of Great Falls had filed for election to the Montana Supreme Court. I first read the news Monday via Twitter from Troy Carter who writes for the Bozeman Daily Chronicle (BDC). You can read the BDC story HERE. The campaign website for Juras will go live June 1. You can view her website HERE.
It looks like convicted murderer Barry Beach has at least two more chances to be freed from prison. Beach is serving a 100-year prison sentence for the 1979 murder of Kimberly Nees near Poplar, Montana.
Beach’s case came to light back in 2008 when a show on Dateline NBC called “The Killing at Poplar River” aired. Beach contends he was coerced into a confession. His case has bounced around the justice system in Montana, and for about 18 months he was even freed from prison.
He has an appeal pending before the Montana Supreme Court. Just this week a bill was signed by the Montana governor that, according to the Associated Press, will allow the governor to grant clemency to prisoners even if the state parole board recommends against it. The governor can also waive fines, lessen a sentence, or issue a pardon.
The law takes effect Oct. 1, 2015.
I’ve probably written about Barry Beach more than most. It all started back in April 2008, and this will be the 30th column in which I mention Beach. You can read them all by going to “categories” on the right side of the screen and selecting “Barry Beach” from the dropdown menu.