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A vicious smear campaign


It saddens me to inform the voters of Southwest Colorado that in my quest for the Democratic nomination for the Colorado House of Representatives, I have become the object of a vicious smear campaign by members of Joe Colgan’s campaign committee. I assume that my opponent, Mr. Colgan, would not condone unethical behavior, and I ask him to act swiftly to stop his associates and retract their lies.

Over the past few weeks, I have been told by concerned Democrats from throughout the 59th District that they had been called by members of my opponent’s staff and told not to vote for Jeff Deitch because “he has been reprimanded several times by the Bar.” How absurd to think that a voter would not contact the Colorado Supreme Court at (877) 888-1370, or at its web site, and find out that in the 18 years since being admitted to the Colorado Bar, attorney Jeff Deitch has never been disciplined or reprimanded in any way.


Spreading lies in an attempt to destroy an attorney’s professional reputation is horrific. At the very least, I respectfully request that Mr. Colgan call all voters who have been contacted and tell them the truth.

I will continue my positive campaign and work with the citizens of Southwest Colorado in solving problems concerning health care, environmental protection, public education, and earning a decent wage. I look forward to a campaign that honors the dignity of our political process.

– Jeff Deitch, candidate for the Colorado House

of Representatives, 59th District


Father knows best

Dear Editors,

Recently, Colorado’s largest daily,The Denver Post, endorsed Mr. Alito for a lifetime appointment to the

Supreme Court. Their argument, both cowardly and soft headed, ran something like this: “Well, we don’t much like Mr. Alito but the president does, and, after all, he is the president, so we defer.” Such piffle is little more than a stolen refrain from a Gilbert and Sullivan opera. 

Mr. Alito’s most alarming characteristic is his tested willingness to defer to the White House in all matter

of things, even those that under the Constitution’s separation of powers, should be rightly decided before the Supreme Court or Congress.

Sure, Alito can pipe that the president is not above the law, but he doesn’t seem to mean it, for as almost anyone with reading ability knows, the president has and continues to run roughshod over any number of federal4

statutes, some of which he himself signed into law.

Bush, in response to the meek criticism his lawlessness has generated from the Congress and the corporate press, proclaims himself devoted to a higher cause, one that trumps all before it. He is protecting our freedoms by eliminating them in his self-proclaimed “War on Terror.”

Father knows best, and Alito will help see to it. It’s called a dictatorship.

– Phil Doe, via e-mail

Making Crossroads a reality

Dear Editors,

As co-chairs of the Psychiatric Community Resource Task Force, we wish to thank all of those in Southwest Colorado who are making Crossroads a reality. Construction started in December on this facility, which will incorporate a psychiatric urgent care unit, a triage unit, and a detox unit. Crossroads will provide the mental health care for persons in psychiatric crisis that Southwest Colorado has been without, and that has entailed transport of our citizens to Pueblo or Grand Junction. This innovative and state-of-the-art treatment facility will help consumers stay close to family and community while dealing with a mental health crisis.

Every town, city, county, law enforcement and human service entity in the five-county service area has endorsed this regional community partnership helping to move us all toward a healthy mental-health future. We have received construction funding from federal (12 percent of the project cost), state and regional governments, along with funds from private foundations.

Now we need your support – the private citizens of Southwest Colorado who will benefit directly from Crossroads services – to raise the final construction dollars. Please consider giving to this critically needed resource. You may mail donations to Southwest Colorado Mental Health Center, earmarked for Crossroads construction, at P.O. Box 1328, Durango, CO 81302. You may also give on our web site, at www.swcmhc.org.

For more information about Crossroads, please contact Beth Utton at 259-2162.

Thanks to you, Crossroads is now a reality, and your continued support is very much appreciated!

– Rep. Mark Larson, R-Cortez,

and Bill Mashaw, Durango

What’s left of our wildlands

Dear Editors,

As a former Air Force officer and a member of the Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, I’m concerned about the few remaining wild places and wide open spaces in this country.  The places that shaped us and helped make us a great nation are now being decimated for mostly insignificant amounts of oil and gas, against the wishes of local communities and citizens.

The ideals Secretary of the Interior Gale A. Norton outlined shortly after taking office – cooperation, consultation and communication with local communities – the “4 Cs,” are nowhere to be found now. For instance, Norton’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has proposed nearly 500 wells for the Roan Plateau in western Colorado.

Every single town and city in Garfield County, where the plateau is located, expressed support for protecting it from drilling, as did some 12,000 citizens who wrote or e-mailed the BLM. They were joined by more than 70 area businesses and outfitters who know firsthand the local economic value a pristine plateau provides through tourism and recreation. However, now a drilling rig is visible on the skyline atop the Roan Plateau.

Fully 88 percent of the public lands in the Rocky Mountains are open for oil and gas drilling. In Colorado, between 1982 and 2004, oil and gas companies had access to 15.8 million acres of public land – about one-fourth of the entire state. But from 1989 to 2003, they produced enough oil to power the country for one day and enough gas for less than two weeks.

Against such unfavorable odds, the Bush administration is willing to wager some of the most spectacular wildlands left in the world. So much for the “4 Cs.”

– David A. Lien,

via e-mail