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Posts published in “Day: August 15, 2009”

Obama out west

A good on the ground report about Barack Obama's visit and town hall at Bozeman, Montana, by a veteran reporter - Ray Ring - who lives there.

Ring: "Obama tells several of the skeptics, 'That's a legitimate question.' He tells one guy, Randy Rathie, a proud National Rifle Association member worried about costs of health-care reform, 'I appreciate your question and the respect with which you ask it.' He keeps using one of his own downhome words - 'folks' - to refer to just about anyone. He completely abandons his Harvard and Columbia degrees to intentionally misuse the language for a moment - 'got to be careful of them cable network shows.' He points to another woman who's wearing a cowboy hat and says, 'If I'm in Montana, I've got to call on someone with a cowboy hat.'"

A decline in courtesy, backcountry version


/Boise National Forest

We've gotten the sense over the last generation or so of a decline in common courtesy, a rise in rudeness - a growing lack of concern, even unawareness, about impinging on other people. We probably see this emerge in other places in some of the uglier sides of our politics.

Read the first letter to Idaho Statesman outdoors writer Pete Zimowsky in this Q&A column, and see if it doesn't ring a bell.