Category: Uncategorized

Posted: April 17, 2014 at 10:11 pm

Oathkeepers to Rally for Guns, Bunkers Saturday

The Daily Inter Lake’s daybook includes a listing for an Oathkeepers Rally this Saturday in Kalispell, the Flathead Memo reports.  

The event is sure to include discussion about the Bunkerville rebellion in Nevada. (Unless the Oathkeepers have all departed already for that state.) In which case attendance may be limited to GOP legislative candidates hoping to burnish their TEA Party creds without having to actually point a gun at a federal official but rather to just casually fondle it.

Certainly the uprising has  already drawn representatives from some Montana militia groups, including one ”Cap. Rick Lovelien Company Commander MTDF, state wide (Libby).”  This same individual has also signed his name to a list of “Patriots” willing to put the hit on the Kenyan socialist president Obama. So there is that.

The Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center both name-checked the group in their reports on rising anti-government extremism, and it would be most interesting to see which GOP legislative candidates attend.

Posted: April 17, 2014 at 7:34 pm

New Report: MT Loses $1.8 Million Every Day Thanks to TEA Party Legislators

A new report by the Montana Budget and Policy Center released today indicates that Montana is missing out on millions of dollars every day, in addition to thousands of jobs, by not expanding the state’s Medicaid program so more Montanans can gain health coverage.

Because TEA Party obstructionists in the Montana legislature voted down a bipartisan measure to accept federal funds to pay for health care for the working poor, Montana has been losing as much as $1.84 million of federal funds every day.

The report also found that Montana’s economy is losing $1.3 million in increased labor productivity from the 12,000 jobs that expansion would create. This increased labor income would also help generate $135,205 in state and local tax revenue every day.

Says the MBPC:

Medicaid expansion is an important opportunity for our state, and every day it is delayed Montana loses out on millions of dollars that could be used to create jobs, support our economy, and provide health care coverage to 70,000 low-income Montanans.

You can download the full report here.

Posted: April 11, 2014 at 4:58 pm

Sign the Petition to Stop Anti-Science, Anti-Gay Billionaire Couple from Speaking at Montana’s Best Tech School

Greg Gianforte, the billionaire tech mogul from Bozeman who apparently believes that the earth is 4,300 years old, has been invited to speak at Montana Tech’s graduation. This touched off a stir,  with stories in Montana and national press.  Students and teachers at Montana Tech are organizing a boycott.

You can sign a petition urging Montana Tech’s president to do the right thing and rescind the offer of the strange husband/wife co-speech here.  Continue reading

Posted: March 25, 2014 at 7:47 pm

“Natural Man” Accuses Gallatin County of International Banking Conspiracy

Internet sensation ”Natural Man” is back in the news this week for refusing to appear in court without a white flag on which he had written “truce.”  This apparently was some kind of legal strategy which he believes will prevent him from being held accountable for his actions.  Ernie Wayne Tertelgte, which is the natural man’s actual name, also accused Gallatin County of being part of an international banking conspiracy.

Tergelgte and his pals in the local militia and Oathkeepers have been spouting bizarre and ludicrous arguments popular with the so-called Sovereign Citizens Movement.  As KTVM reported,  ”the FBI considers sovereign citizen extremists a domestic terrorist movement.”

Tertelgte’s posse have threatened to kidnap the judge who presided over Tertelgte’s last court appearance. judge

You can see the latest on KTVM’s website here.

Posted: March 18, 2014 at 6:52 pm

NARAL Pro-Choice Montana Crushes Fundraising Goal to Help Destroyed Women’s Clinic

Maggie Moran, Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Montana
Maggie Moran, Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Montana

Quick update on the fundraising efforts lead by NARAL Pro-Choice Montana Director Maggie Moran and the group’s allies.

Pro-Choice Montana’s online fundraising efforts alone have raised more than twice the initial goal–nearly $60,000 has been raised to help All Families Health Care, which was vandalized just over a week ago.

In October of last year, NARAL Pro-Choice Montana Foundation released an investigative report on crisis pregnancy centers that included discussion about the dangerous connections these fake clinics have with extreme anti-choice groups.

What Pro-Choice Montana had to say of the attack is worth reading:

We are deeply saddened by the vandalism at Susan Cahill’s family practice in Kalispell and are equally distraught by the recent knowledge of the suspect’s connections to the local CPC network—Hope Pregnancy Ministries. The Montana Human Rights Network uncovered the fact that the suspect’s mother is a board member at Hope Pregnancy Ministries, which administers Clear Choice Clinic, a crisis pregnancy center in Kalispell.

We stand with Susan Cahill, All Families Healthcare, and all of the Kalispell community members who depended on the clinic for healthcare. Everyone has the right to healthcare and to employment without fear of intimidation and violence. NARAL Pro-Choice Montana and our allies also stand committed to exposing crisis pregnancy centers’ harmful and deceptive practices.

Ms. Moran and her volunteers, staff, and coalition partners are to be commended for their outstanding efforts to help this community health care provider and the members of the community which this clinic has served for decades.  Well done.

Posted: March 17, 2014 at 6:57 am

Don’t Let Violence Win

The Montana Human Rights Network has been raising money online to help All Families Health Care in Kalispell to recover after it was destroyed by vandalism.

Susan Cahill has been offering family practice services in Kalispell, Montana since 1976.  She has provided abortions as one part of her comprehensive reproductive healthcare model–and this is probably why she was targeted by an anti-choice extremist. (Not that you can find many of these types that support birth control either.)

The damage at All Families Healthcare has been described by Susan Cahill herself as “a total loss.”  All of the equipment was systematically destroyed, records were trashed and stolen.

As Susan Cahill said, “If women don’t band together and understand that this violence against me is also violence against them, then we’re just going to end up back [as things were] before [abortion] was legal.”  We must stand together as a caring community to support Susan, the All Families staff, and anyone else who is a victim of violence. The vandalism and subsequent hiatus of abortion services in Kalispell and the Flathead Valley does nothing to reduce the need for these services–in fact, one could argue that the need now is greater than ever as Susan Cahill also provided services like pregnancy prevention.

Please take a minute to share this fundraising page with others who may be willing to help.

You can also get connected locally to Love Lives Here in Kalispell by contacting Will Randall, prandall@cyberport.net.  Love Lives Here in the Flathead Valley, an affiliate organization of Montana Human Rights Network, is committed to co-creating a caring, open, accepting and diverse community, free from discrimination and dedicated to equal treatment for all our citizens.

As of last night, over $39,000.00 donated, the goal was $25,000.00. This particular fundraiser will run for another 25 days or so. There are other fund raisers other than this one in the process of collecting contributions, t the current rate. Hopefully, combined, there may well be over $100,000.00 generated by the months end, which is closer  probably not even close to the amount needed to help this clinic stay in business.

Here are some of the stories about the destruction:

Flathead Beacon

The Missoulian

RH Reality Check

Salon

Southern Poverty Law Center

Care2 Make a Difference

The Stranger

The Flathead Memo

and of course on this blog.

Good work by Maggie Moran, Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Montana, and the Montana Human Rights Network.  It’s great to have organizations like this in Montana.

Posted: March 14, 2014 at 6:37 pm

Creationists and the Court

Seems our recently profiled candidate for Montana’s Supreme Court,  Mr. Lawrence VanDyke, has a soft spot for soft science.

While he declined to reveal much in his interview with the IR, the internet has much to offer us.

In his time as the editor of the oft-praised Harvard Law Review in 2004, he took it upon himself to bring the world creationism rebranded as intelligent design.

Apparently, VanDyke:

“published a besotted review of Francis Beckwith’s book about the constitutionality of Intelligent Design creationism in public schools. VanDyke’s insipid and error-filled piece…would have been eminently ignorable had it not appeared in the often respected Law Review, and this fact alone attracted a dogpile of criticism.”

For example.

Mr. VanDyke’s article was entitled “Not Your Daddy’s Fundamentalism” it appeared in 117 Harv. L Rev. 964. He got trounced in the blogosphere and and merriment ensued.

Now, he wants a seat on the Montana Supreme Court.

Contrast this candidate with someone like Mike Black, who is more committed to social and economic justice than pseudo-science.

Posted: March 5, 2014 at 9:01 pm

UPDATE: More Information Emerges on Suspect in Women’s Clinic Destruction

The Montana Human Rights Network is reporting some additional information on the organization’s Facebook page about the connections of Zachary Klundt, the man who was arrested today in connection with the break-in and vandalism of a women’s clinic in Kalispell, Montana. Nothing was stolen from the clinic, instead, “extensive damage” was found.

UPDATE:  The Flathead Beacon is reporting that something was stolen – medical records.  Also police found an unidentified yellow powder had been sprinkled around covering “almost everything.”

Zachary Klundt is the son of a woman named Twyla Klundt, who is on the board of Hope Pregnancy Ministries which is affiliated with a fake women’s clinic called Clear Choice–which is a so-called “crisis pregnancy center,” MHRN reports.

A crisis pregnancy center, in case you aren’t familiar with them yet, is basically a fake doctor’s office run by an anti-choice organization which poses as a medical clinic to get pregnant women seeking abortions or medical care in the door. Once women are inside, the staffers often then give women a Walmart pregnancy test out of the box and make them watch films with fake claims about the evils of abortion. There are all kinds of horror stories about these places, and there are several in operation in Montana. Some states have passed “truth in advertising” laws the prohibit these places from posing as medical clinics.

Anyway, as the Montana Human Rights Network’s researchers report, “In 2010 white supremacist April Gaede solicited donations for Hope Pregnancy Ministries.”

Even if you haven’t heard of April Gaede, you’ve probably heard of her twin daughters, Lamb and Lynx, who used to have a white power musical group called Prussian Blue. The two girls have been referred to as the “Nazi Pop Twins,” the Human Rights Network reports. The Southern Poverty Law Center calls Gaede “a neo-Nazi stage mom” and includes a picture with her profile.

Gaede has posted on the white supremacist website Stormfront that she‘s given to Hope Pregnancy Ministries in the past, and that she believes giving money to that organization is a good way to “help save White babies.” I won’t link to Stormfront, nor should anyone.  As MHRN reports:

Gaede‘s posting continued by saying she has ―personally met many of these people (Ministries‘ staff). She told her peers to tell staff members that they were supporters of Stormfront, the  white supremacist website where Gaede made her request, when making a donation. She included the mailing address and website address for the Ministries.

Gaede encouraged her fellow white supremacists to send funds, because “our local population is over 95% White so they would be ―pretty much guaranteed to be helping to save White babies.”

To be sure, this new information about Klundt’s ties may or may not inform the investigation and or the case. Only time, good investigative reporting, and the courts will tell. There’s lots more info in the full six-page MHRN brief for an enterprising reporter to uncover on this emerging story.

Posted: March 3, 2014 at 7:51 pm

Great New Montana Blog

The Montana Budget and Policy Center has a new a new blog.  I’ve added it to the blogroll here.

Charted Territory will be a great source of straightforward, non-partisan and clear information about reducing poverty, growing the economy, creating jobs, and ensuring access to health care–and a great way to learn about how decisions about the state and federal budgets impact Montana citizens.   It’s rare to get information of this quality in such a readable and relevant format.
Here are the blog’s goals:

We aim to give Montanans a map to these crucial issues, using accurate information and clear, non-partisan analysis to provide timely commentary. Here, you will find straightforward talk about events and decisions that impact the lives of Montanans, and our nation as a whole. We’ll discuss trends in the Montana economy, the role that state and local taxes play in building strong communities and a vibrant economy, the difference that safety net programs make in helping families meet basic needs and giving them opportunities to move up the economic ladder, and much more. Of course, we’ll throw in a few charts along the way.

You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter @MontanaBudget and sign up for e-mail updates.

Posted: February 25, 2014 at 6:39 am

GUEST POST: Broken Ladder

[This guest post on income inequality is by new Cowgirl contributor Bud White, who can be reached at budwhite41@outlook.com A discussion on this topic is long overdue.]

As the recognition grows regarding the issue of economic inequality in America, the discussion invariably comes around to upward mobility. In an attempt to describe the current situation, many observers and experts turn to an analogy of a ladder with ever lengthening rungs to paint a picture of why it is difficult to advance. The idea being the opportunity to move up the ladder is there, but it is just harder to reach the next step.

These experts then go on to offer a variety of factors to explain why. They mention inadequate worker preparedness, globalization, education, etc. All these imply that the opportunity to advance is hindered by something lacking in the individual that prevents him or her from reaching the next rung. It’s possible, one just has to improve and work harder to reach it. In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Continue reading