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Lots of meth news in the last few days. Use of this nastiest of drugs is on the increase despite an anti-meth campaign costing millions of dollars.

The Billings Gazette quotes Police Chief Rich St. John on the near record number of murders in the Magic City, “There’s a common denominator, and it’s usually methamphetamine.” Meth-related crime is up in Missoula, too, according to KECI-TV.

Last Best News, Reptile Dysfunction and the Missoula Independent are asking the question, could the Montana Meth Project money be better spent?

Speaking of Last Best News, and drugs, former Great Falls Tribune reporter John Adams has a post up about a doctor facing drug charges who used to work at the Montana State Hospital. Mark Jay Catalanello was also, at one time, the medical director at Montana Chemical Dependency Center. Adams’ story chronicles a history of suspended licenses and brushes with the law. It’s an interesting story but equally interesting, to me anyway, is Adams’ byline at LBN. I’m not sure what the arrangement is because he has his own news blog, Montana Free Press, but between Adams, founder Ed Kemmick and recent addition David Crisp, Last Best News could be making the traditional Montana dailies a little nervous.

And speaking of journalism, Moyers and Company has a rather depressing article on veteran journalists. The subhead gives a brief description: “As newsrooms disappear, veteran older reporters are being forced from the profession. That’s bad for journalism — and democracy.” Through interviews and observations, Dale Maharidge writes about the “seismic shift” in that profession.

Colstrip workers are in the midst of a seismic shift, too, if stories out of Oregon and Washington are any indication. Legislatures in both states are passing bills designed to take coal out of their respective energy portfolios, reports MTN news. Oregon and Washington get much of their coal fired electricity from Colstrip Units 1,2,3 and 4. Union, business and government leaders are playing ostrich instead of moving forward on a plan to mitigate the loss of jobs and tax base at Colstrip. This reality does not bode well for the workers or the community.

Candidate for governor, Greg Gianforte, is also having some reality issues. State senator and former economics professor, Dick Barrett, writes that Gianforte is having difficulty grasping how the state budget, and Montana’s Constitution, actually work. Barrett concludes with:

Gianforte’s taxing and spending plans don’t pencil out, but you shouldn’t let that worry you too much. Because even though Gianforte doesn’t seem to know it, the state constitution requires the budget to be balanced. So his plan is simply unworkable. There’s some comfort in that, although it’s alarming to think that there is a candidate out there who doesn’t seem to know or care that he is pitching a plan that can never get off the ground.

 

 

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About the author

Pete Talbot

'Papa’ Pete Talbot is first and foremost a grandfather to five wonderful grandchildren. Like many Montanans, he has held numerous jobs over the years: film and video producer, a partner in a marketing and advertising firm, a builder and a property manager. He’s served on local and statewide Democratic Party boards. Pete has also been blogging at various sites for over a decade. Ping-pong and skiing are his favorite diversions. He enjoys bourbon.

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LK
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LK

Last Best News. Yup. I know all three of them guys, Ed, David, and Adams. Great journalists all. And you’re right. They’re are the BEST online newspaper in the state right now. Bar none! They’ve paid their dues, and now, they’re gonna pay back to a state they love! I mean, what the hell do they have to lose, right? They AIN’T out to please the corporate fascists! But they need a few bucks to keep going. I’ll do what I can, but I sincerely hope that every thinking person in the state does the same. I plan to take… Read more »

Egalitarian
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Egalitarian

I am not surprised that meth use has increased, especially in Billings. It is the closest big city to the oilfields which have experienced a bust after a boom.

Pain is pain, and where there is economic pain there is psychological pain. And when there is pain there will be the desire diminish it. Nothing compares to the rush of dopamine from meth, especially if ones (dopamine et. al.) reserves are depressingly low.

#RatPark

http://www.stuartmcmillen.com/comics_en/rat-park/

LK
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LK

DAMN you, O’Bama! It’s your fault again! I TOLD you that Fat Toni was in the saddle when he departed this old world. But what I DIDN’T know was that O’Bama put Fat Toni UP to it! Yes, the prez hired a special hooker to do the dirty deed, and whilst ridin’ the Fat Toni baloney, well, it was just too much for his 79 yr. old heart! And it gave out! I mean, how devious can you get?! And the ReePubes are right. I mean, how can Fat Toni ever be replaced? Just how many 79 yr. old horndog… Read more »

LK
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LK

Wow, limp lizard. Was there a point in all that? But hey, grand wizard lizard, what is YOUR solution to the meth problem? Ya got one, right, one that is just waiting to be implemented by doo doo gooders! With money! The collapse of society in general is multi-faceted, and I contend irreversible! Meth is simply a symptom. That’s all. Inbreds having inbreds begets even MORE inbreds! Until we’re overwhelmed! And for society to attempt to deal with it all is impossible! Couple that with all the problem folks with lots of problems and their inbred problem kids moving to… Read more »

lizard19
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to deal with a problem the first step is to acknowledge you have one. the media is reporting that Montana has a meth problem, which is a good first step. the point you seem to have missed is my concern that a political campaign running on the claim Montana is doing great because we have a rainy day fund and low unemployment won’t readily admit that communities across the state are dealing with terrible consequences from meth specifically and addiction generally, especially when a failed effort to reduce meth abuse has direct ties to the Governor’s office. as for solutions,… Read more »

LK
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LK

OK, I get it. One looked east, and one looked west, and we flew over the CUCKOO’S nest! (probably my favorite movie and book) Problem is, lizard, there is NO cure for meth! I’ve known personally lots of folks on meth, and they just don’t want to get off! I’ve only known one guy who seems to have been successful. Meth is bad, bad stuff. First, you’ve got to want to get off it, and second, they don’t Apparently it’s a fantastic high from what I’m told. All the treatment in the world ain’t gonna change that. And at SOME… Read more »

LK
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LK

Oops. Should be “how” many meth kids you willing to support? And how many are you obligated to support? Every taxpayer needs to ask themselves that. I say after one or two, you’re on your OWN, meth mama! And I a hater for that?

LK
Guest
LK

Your people, liz, the ones your dying to help! HEY, it’s not my study, but I fully agree with it. It’s called science!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk/6057734.stm

lizard19
Guest

I might be cynical, but I’m not an aging defeatist like you appear to be Larry. I shudder to think what your generation is going to be like in a few more years, as you really get old. there is hell waiting for you in a Goodman group nursing home to be sure. us younger folks would like to help you out, but that mountain of debt and service industry job just doesn’t leave one with a lot of money and energy to deal with grumpy old timers yammering incoherently about the good ol’ days.

LK
Guest
LK

I truly wish I were simply a defeatist, Whizzer, I truly do. But sadly, I think I’m a realist. And yet you ask me why I drink! Seriously? You don’t know? Of course not. How could you? “You’re still young, that’s your fault, you’ve so much yet to go through.” You fault the pain of having watched your country turn to sh*t! When they murdered the Kennedy’s and committed a coup, it was all over for America. Our hope died. Been downhill ever since. Unless your my age, you can’t really comprehend. (fully that is) And the amazing thing is… Read more »

LK
Guest
LK

Inbreds gonna be inbreds. That’s just how they are. FREEEEEEEdumb! is not in short supply in the inbred crowd!

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/scott-cadle-raw-milk-wv-legislature-sickness

Now, can we please get another raw milk bill from the Teatardians? Too funny.

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