Miller Hudson

HUDSON: MERIT-BASED CIVIL SERVICE ASSURES SMART GOVERNMENT

State bureaucrats once again dodged meaningful analysis of compensation issues

GUEST COLUMNIST

The Hickenlooper administration raised several hundred thousand dollars in order to survey state employees about their jobs. The results are now summarized on the Department of Personnel and Administration’s (DPA) website. It’s a good thing taxpayer dollars weren’t wasted on this effort. The questions read like they were dreamed up at a blissed out, New Age smoke-in. The only interesting response is the 58 percent of state workers who indicate they are seriously considering quitting during the next 12 months.

HUDSON: NUMBERS HIT HOME

‘Going big’ could mean a big budget mess

GUEST COLUMNIST

Rarely do the media, nor do our politicians in Washington, present financial data in a format that actually communicates the jaw-dropping reality of our federal budget mess. It’s proven easier to talk about “going big,” the euphemism du jour for attempting to legislate a fix which reduces budget deficits to zero within fifteen or twenty years. Easier still, was pointing fingers during the Congressional Super Committee’s recent failure to identify $1.2 trillion in spending cuts over the next dozen years. Lets chart the current fiscal position of every American before proceeding.

HUDSON: REMEMBRANCES OF A LEGISLATIVE FORCE

Freda Poundstone played her politics as a full contact sport — rugby not badminton

GUEST COLUMNIST

When I was sworn into the Colorado Legislature in January 1979, whether one loved her or feared her, everyone at the State Capitol knew Freda Poundstone. As a Denver Democrat, I arrived abundantly aware that she was particularly reviled for her Poundstone Amendment to the Colorado constitution. She had, nearly single-handedly, applied the brakes to Denver’s long running annexation binges of the ‘50s and ‘60s. Freda’s critics liked to portray her as a bigot, viscerally opposed to the court ordered school busing imposed on Denver’s public schools.

HUDSON: REFORM FOR ALL OF DPS, NOT JUST FOR THE WELL CONNECTED

Despite lack of support from “reformers,” Arturo Jimenez’s brand of reform rings true

GUEST COLUMNIST

Despite the fact that Colorado’s self-anointed educational reformers moved heaven and earth to toss Arturo Jimenez off the Denver School Board, voters narrowly returned him in a surprising election result. I believe this decision by voters will ultimately prove the right one for the goals these reformers support, but, more significantly, it was in the best interest of Denver students, parents and teachers. We don’t need a single flavor of school reformer on the School Board.

HUDSON: THEATER SEASON IS UNDERWAY

Two fun-filled local productions worth seeing

Contributing Columnist

THE LIAR as adapted by David Ives from Pierre Corneille’s original farce. Directed by Kent Thompson at the DCPA and playing through October 16. SOME GIRL(s) by Neil LaBute, at the Edge Theater Company, 9797 W. Colfax. Directed by Rick Yaconis and playing weekends through October 23.

HUDSON: NOT CARING FOR UNINSURED MAKES ME SICK

No insurance? No health care? No way

The Colorado Statesman

As I was watching the TEA Party debate among the Republican candidates for President, it became evident why Sarah Palin and her admirers were so exorcised last year regarding the possibility of death panels. They must have known what they might expect if any of them were selected to serve on these juries. Little wonder they were alarmed. The critically ill, when uninsured, would not pass GO, nor collect $200, but would be promptly delivered directly to the closest mortician.

HUDSON: I’M A JUNKIE FOR BOOKS

The well-known (and cunning) bibliophile, Mephistopheles, still murmurs in my ear

Contributing Columnist

Now that reality TV has found a profitable audience for voyeurs transfixed by the obsessive/compulsive disorders of coupon clippers, packrats and the perpetually jejune, think Jersey Shore and the Housewives of Wherever, there appears to be little shame in forthrightly acknowledging one’s pathologies. In fact, there seems to be a buck in it for nearly everyone. Consequently, I am now quietly biding my time until bibliophiles earn their turn in cable TV’s high definition spotlight.

HUDSON: COLORADO’S GOVERNOR ON THE NATIONAL STAGE

The notion of Hickenlooper for President is brewing with possibilities

Contributing Columnist

If the Hancock media team really wants to raise our new Mayor’s national profile they could do worse than to take a lesson from Governor Hickenlooper. It doesn’t get any better for a Democrat than snagging a shout out from George Will. As the dean of (establishment, not Tea Party) conservative punditry, Will’s recent column helps spread the speculation that Hick just might make an appearance on the Democratic national ticket in 2016. A lot of homebrew will need to pass under the bridge before that comes to pass, but who’s to say it’s impossible?

HUDSON: A DAY OF RECOGNITION, BUT FOR WHAT?

Labor Days of the past and present

Contributing Columnist

For most Americans Labor Day is the bookend summer holiday which closes the family vacation months that begin each year with Memorial Day. Not one in a thousand could tell you it was established by a unanimous vote of Congress in 1894. Fewer still would know why such consensus prevailed. Suffice it to say that the wholesale slaughter of workers by federal troops during the Pullman strikes proved an embarrassment for both political parties. Designating a day of national recognition for the working men and women of the nation seemed expedient at the time.

HUDSON: I’M PROUD TO SAY I WAS THERE

Martin Luther King Memorial in D.C. brings back memories from 48 years ago

Contributing Columnist

Forty-eight years ago this week I moved into my dorm room at the University of Maryland in College Park. Freshmen were required to report a week early to undertake an orientation to the state’s flagship campus serving more than 30,000 undergraduates. The program also afforded the opportunity to register early for classes, meet with our academic advisors and purchase textbooks before the real crush occurred. By Wednesday we were getting bored and many of us were itching to go barhopping in Washington, D.C., where the legal drinking age was still 18.