Thursday, January 17, 2008

Teach Your Children Well

Their father's hell will slowly go by
-lyric from the song Teach Your Children by Graham Nash

Those of you who do not live in Colorado may not recognize the name Douglas Bruce but he is the man who came up with The Taxpayer's Bill Of Rights (TABOR) back in the late 1980's. This bill amended the state's constitution and limited any increase in state and local government's taxes by requiring the increase to be subject to a vote by the people if that increase was over a certain percentage. It also limited, by vote, the amount of money any government could spend. In the years following the passage of the amendment many local governments ask voters for permission to exceed these spending limitations. Doing so was was referred to as "deBrucing" and a great number of voters across the state decided to "deBruce."

Well, Bruce is back in the news this week. First he caused a commotion after he was selected to fill in a vacant Colorado House of Representative seat by saying he wanted to be swore in as a Representative with the House members in attendance and the House in session; something that is not done with people filling out another person's term of office. Oh,yeah, he would also like to make a speech after his swearing-in ceremony. The request was turned down so Bruce decided not to turn up on the opening day of the second half of this year's legislative session. When the higher ups in his party (Republican) threatened to replace him with someone else he decided that maybe he didn't need all the other House members there for his swearing-in ceremony at all.

You think that would be the end of it, wouldn't you? Nope. This story had snowballed and many local news departments decide to cover his no-House-members-in-attendance swearing-in. Right before the ceremony and during a prayer he kicked (video here) a Rocky Mountain News photographer for taking his picture. Bruce, of course, refused to apologize since it was all the photographer's fault. Classless behavior from a classless guy.

Normally I wouldn't waste my time on this guy but one news story caught my eye. Denver Post columnist Susan Greene discussed Bruce's behavior with a group of preschoolers. They thought he was wrong and had suggestions for just how Bruce's behavior should be handled.

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