• Monthly
  • $25
  • $50
  • $100
  • $other
  • use PayPal

ONE WEEK TO DOUBLE YOUR DONATION!

A generous CounterPuncher has offered a $25,000 matching grant. So for this week only, whatever you can donate will be doubled up to $25,000! If you have the means, please donate! If you already have done so, thank you for your support. All contributions are tax-deductible.
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail

Tiger Max, Evel Denny, Buffalo Brian and Mini-Max Jon

Montana politics are fun again! It seems like eons since we were amused by bald-faced buffoonery by the likes of former U.S. Rep. Marlenee and former U.S. Sen. Conrad Burns.

Sure, we’ve had 35 years of consistently reliable incoherence from U.S. Sen. Max Baucus in his natural mental state. And, the captivating antics of U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg, in his alcohol-induced “wild and crazy guy” state.

But, it’s been a full five and a half years since Rehberg visited Kazakhstan, drank six shots of vodka, called the locals “coneheads,” fell off a horse, and broke his ribs. And, a full 27 years since Baucus traded in then-wife Ann Geracimos for now-former-wife Wanda Minge. Pretty boring.

Of course, Baucus has since achieved stardom inside the Beltway for raking in more special-interest money than any other senator. Last year, Baucus raised $12 million, much of it from industries he “regulates,” with 87 percent coming from non-Montanans.

Baucus is also infamous for his staff’s incessant “revolving door” relationship with K Street. Over two dozen former Baucus employees now lobby for the pharmaceutical and health insurance industries. Was anyone really surprised when Baucus sold us out on health care? But, hey, that’s politics. Again, pretty boring stuff.

In the past, Montanans have cut Baucus a lot of slack, due to his awkwardness and speech impediments. But, Baucus’s inherent ineptitude is now a topic of national discussion, due to his spectacularly disastrous flameout regarding health insurance.

However, to the fickle public, predictable machinations like caving on health care apparently don’t hold a candle to personal proclivities. Who would have guessed that Baucus would pull a Tiger Woods concerning his wife and his girlfriend? But, you’ve got to hand it to Woods. At least, Tiger never nominated his mistress to be head of the PGA Tour.

As for Rehberg, drinking too much, insulting locals, falling off something, and breaking bones is one thing in Kazakhstan, but quite another at home. A boatload of inebriated Republicans revelers roaring their 22-foot-long craft at 4,000 rpm and 40-45 miles per hour straight into the shoreline of Flathead Lake is bound to receive a bit more media coverage.

By doing an Evel Knievel (whose 37 broken bones earned him a revered entry in the Guinness Book of World Records) last August, Rehberg demonstrated with profundity the “cojones” necessary to win the demographically-significant and much-coveted Butte alcoholic vote.

Add to this, our effervescent Gov. Brian Schweitzer bragging that, “No governor in Montana history has sent more bison to slaughter than this governor,” in reference to the senseless killing of more than 2,800 of the imperiled last remaining wild migrating bison in the world.

After his sycophancy before the Montana Stockgrowers Association, “Buffalo Brian” then quickly elbowed his way to be the Last Best Passenger on board the Tester Logging Bill Hindenburg.

For the past couple of years, U.S. Sen. Jon Tester has been OK fulfilling his designated role as “mini-Max,” quietly focusing on veterans’ affairs, and subscribing to Baucus’s tutelage that securing corporate cash from inside-the-Beltway lobbyists is of superior import than audaciously standing up for cashless commoners from far-off Montana hinterlands.

But, in pushing a bill projected to cost hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies for industrial-scale logging of national forests that have NO commercial timberlands, “mini-Max” Tester has now also established himself as worthy of commemoration in the pantheon of politicians. Even the U.S. Forest Service, which never saw a timber sale it didn’t like, had to oppose mini-Max’s largesse for a mere four timber corporations.

In retrospect, 2009 was a great year! “Tiger Woods” Baucus, “Evel Knievel” Rehberg, “Buffalo Brian” Schweitzer, and “mini-Max” Tester – thanks to their selfless toils, Montana at long last regained its rightful place on the national political radar screen.

PAUL RICHARDS a Boulder, Montana area businessman and former member of the Montana House of Representatives, ran for the U.S. Senate in 2006. Founder of the Deerlodge Forest Defense Fund, he served for many years as an official member of the Deerlodge National Forest Technical Advisory Committee. He can be reached at: paul@prmediaconsultants.com

 

More articles by:
bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550
October 16, 2019
Patrick Cockburn
How Turkey’s Invasion of Syria Backfired on Erdogan
Chitrangada Choudhury – Aniket Aga
How Cotton Became a Headache in the Age of Climate Chaos
Jack Rasmus
US-China Mini-Trade Deal: Trump Takes the Money and Runs
Michael Welton
Communist Dictatorship in Our Midst
Robert Hunziker
Extinction Rebellion Sweeps the World
Peter A. Coclanis
Donald Trump as Artist
Chris Floyd
Byzantium Now: Time-Warping From Justinian to Trump
Steve Klinger
In For a Dime, in For a Dollar
Gary Leupp
The Maria Ramirez Story
Kim C. Domenico
It Serves Us Right To Suffer: Breaking Down Neoliberal Complacency
Kiley Blackman
Wildlife Killing Contests are Unethical
Colin Todhunter
Bayer Shareholders: Put Health and Nature First and Stop Funding This Company!
Andrés Castro
Looking Normal in Kew Gardens
October 15, 2019
Victor Grossman
The Berlin Wall, Thirty Years Later
Raouf Halaby
Kurdish Massacres: One of Britain’s Many Original Sins
Robert Fisk
Trump and Erdogan have Much in Common – and the Kurds will be the Tragic Victims of Their Idiocy
Ron Jacobs
Betrayal in the Levant
Wilma Salgado
Ecuador: Lenin Moreno’s Government Sacrifices the Poor to Satisfy the IMF
Ralph Nader
The Congress Has to Draw the Line
William A. Cohn
The Don Fought the Law…
John W. Whitehead
One Man Against the Monster: John Lennon vs. the Deep State
Lara Merling – Leo Baunach
Sovereign Debt Restructuring: Not Falling Prey to Vultures
Norman Solomon
The More Joe Biden Stumbles, the More Corporate Democrats Freak Out
Jim Britell
The Problem With Partnerships and Roundtables
Howard Lisnoff
More Incitement to Violence by Trump’s Fellow Travelers
Binoy Kampmark
University Woes: the Managerial Class Gets Uppity
Joe Emersberger
Media Smears, Political Persecution Set the Stage for Austerity and the Backlash Against It in Ecuador
Thomas Mountain
Ethiopia’s Abiy Ahmed Wins Nobel Peace Prize, But It Takes Two to Make Peace
Wim Laven
Citizens Must Remove Trump From Office
October 14, 2019
Ann Robertson - Bill Leumer
Class Struggle is Still the Issue
Mike Miller
Global Climate Strike: From Protest To Power?
Patrick Cockburn
As Turkey Prepares to Slice Through Syria, the US has Cleared a New Breeding Ground for Isis
John Feffer
Trump’s Undeclared State of Emergency
Dean Baker
The Economics and Politics of Financial Transactions Taxes and Wealth Taxes
Jonah Raskin
What Evil Empire?
Nino Pagliccia
The Apotheosis of Emperors
Evaggelos Vallianatos
A Passion for Writing
Basav Sen
The Oil Despots
Brett Wilkins
‘No Friend But the Mountains’: A History of US Betrayal of the Kurds
John Kendall Hawkins
Assange: Enema of the State
Scott Owen
Truth, Justice and Life
Thomas Knapp
“The Grid” is the Problem, Not the Solution
Rob Kall
Republicans Are Going to Remove Trump Soon
Cesar Chelala
Lebanon, Dreamland
Weekend Edition
October 11, 2019
Friday - Sunday
Becky Grant
CounterPunch in Peril?
FacebookTwitterRedditEmail