Doom and Bloom, or The Emperor’s New Chip

by John Mattingly

Last month, under the title, A Species Behaving Badly, I concluded. . .

“Few would argue the most unique aspect of the human species is our consciousness, but there is no reason why that consciousness must be contained and energized inside a global bone atop the body of a non-commensul, energy-eating, land-based, brain-bearing, nest-fouling mammal.”

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From the Compost Bin – June 2009

(Tips for high-altitude gardeners)

by Suzanne Ward

At long last it is June, the last frost date and time to plant the garden.? Keep an eye on the weather at this time of year, as it can change quickly.? My farmer father always said, “If you don’t like the weather in Colorado, just wait ten minutes.”?

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Walking Nature Home: A Life’s Journey

By: Susan J. Tweit
Illustrations by: Sherrie York
University of Texas Press, March 2009
ISBN: 978-0-0292-71917-0

Reviewed by Eduardo Rey Brummel

Susan Tweit has been a fixture of Salida for over a decade. Her weekly column in Salida’s Mountain Mail, has been a fixture for nearly as long, and she’s graced the pages of Colorado Central, bunches of times. Now, after writing eleven place-based books, Tweit’s most recent book, Walking Nature Home, is her most intimate, and has the most to say about the place we call “home.”

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From Redstone to Ludlow: John Cleveland Osgood’s Struggle against the United Mine Workers of America

By F. Darrell Munsell
Published in 2008 by University Press of Colorado
ISBN: 978-0-87081-934-6

Reviewed by Virginia McConnell Simmons

With its inclusion of Ludlow, the scene of southern Colorado’s most deadly labor fight, From Redstone to Ludlow will hardly be mistaken for a tourist’s guide to Pitkin County’s tiny village of Redstone on the Crystal River. Rather, as the subtitle indicates, the text is a hefty study in Colorado labor history, specifically relating to coal mining. But who is the subtitle’s John Cleveland Osgood, a name that seldom appears in Colorado histories, except in advertisements that might lure travelers to Redstone? As author F. Darrell Munsell shows, he was the stubborn, aggressive leader of mining men in Colorado’s coal and coking industries at the turn of the last century.

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Down on the Ground with The Green Fuse and Its Force

by George Sibley

I’m writing in the first week or so of the season of plants here in the Upper Gunnison. Probably old news for you by June, but this morning is the first morning waking up to new leaves on the smaller trees. Yesterday morning, those almost unbelievably green leaflets were still just buds, but yesterday afternoon was “June” all the way, despite being only early May. You could practically hear the buds unfolding. The tall cottonwoods are all still in their reddish-brown catkin stage and won’t go green for a few days yet. The grass has been greening up since the soggy days of late April. The perennial flowers are resurrecting, and the lettuce and spinach and carrots are above ground in the cold frame.

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Water Update – June 2009

by John Orr

Gunnison River flow regime through Black Canyon

Last year, conservationists, irrigators, the National Park Service, the Bureau of Reclamation, the state of Colorado, along with many other groups and municipalities, sat down and hammered out an agreement to manage flows in the Gunnison River through the Black Canyon. The agreement was the outcome of a 2006 lawsuit by environmental groups to overturn a 2003 back room deal between the Department of Interior and the state of Colorado. The original deal called for minimum flows in the national park of 300 cfs with no consideration for larger flows or shoulder flows to help maintain riparian health or for restoration. As a result of the lawsuit federal Judge Clarence Brimmer threw out the agreement terming it, “nonsensical.”

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News from the San Luis Valley – June 2009

By Marcia Darnell

Here Come da’ Judges

The Supremes came to the Valley for Courts in the Community. The program transported the Colorado Supreme Court to Alamosa High School to hear arguments in a real case before students. The kids had a chance to ask questions of the attorneys involved after the justices adjourned.

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Regional News Roundup – June 2009

Uranium processing company is at it again

CANON CITY – The Cotter Corporation in Cañon City wants to reopen their troubled plant for the chemical leaching and crushing of 500,000 tons of uranium per year for 25 years beginning in 2014.

The plant, which sits above the Arkansas River on the south side of Cañon City, has been operating on a “stand-down basis” allowing Cotter to retain their operating license despite a 25-year old Environmental Protection Agency ruling ordering the plant to do a Superfund cleanup. That cleanup has been stalled and has had repeated violations over the years.

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The Art of Christo and Jeanne-Claude: An Overview

by Keith Howard

Editors note: Christo’s proposed project for the Arkansas River, Over the River, has generated passionate discussion since its conception and much has been written for and against the project.

We decided to take a look at the career of the controversial artist, his works, and the challenges of displaying public art on such a vast scale.

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Q & A – with Thomas Jefferson


Colorado Central: Mr. President, you have been quoted as saying, “I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies.”

Could you expand on this and do you believe this to be true in your observations of the 21st century?

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Parenting Isn’t So Difficult–By Comparison

by Susan Tweit

Anyone who has ever raised kids has had at least one moment of wondering why in the world you wanted to be a parent in the first place and whether it’s possible to survive with your sanity intact, as well as at least one moment when you realize there’s nothing more wonderful than being your kid’s parent.

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Poem to the Editor

oh i wish i was the captain
out on the arabian sea
get hassled by some locals
uncle sam gonna rescue me
gonna send some big destroyers
and snipers one two three
gonna poach them hapless people’s fish
and get away scot free

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From the Editor – June 2009

We hope you enjoy this current issue of CC. It’s been nicknamed the “art edition” although it is not strictly about art or artists. June is the month Salida celebrates its annual ArtWalk, an opportunity for area artists to show their stuff and shake off the winter doldrums. Now in it’s 17th year, the event features receptions, workshops, music and other activities for locals and visitors alike.

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Another town, another Family Dollar

by Hal Walter

Westcliffe area residents no longer need to drive far for a selection of inexpensive plastic things made in China. A Family Dollar store opened here in May.

I watched in curiosity for most of the winter as the ground was broken and construction began for the new business. I was intrigued because I had in fact never been inside a Family Dollar. And since I seemed to be doing just fine without anything from there I doubted I’d ever need to set foot in the place.

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