Twilight of the Cowboy Poet

by William Skink

Quist my Gianforte
Greg my grumpy hands
violence is a language
the masses understand
though culture wars are staged
the medical debt is real
but Montana’s aging hippie
failed to appeal
Quist my Gianforte
Bobby sings the blues
Democrats astound
still without a clue
of how the fire feeds
and where it needs to burn
hard hands take the day
Democrats refuse to learn

About Travis Mateer

I'm an artist and citizen journalist living and writing in Montana. You can contact me here: willskink at yahoo dot com
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33 Responses to Twilight of the Cowboy Poet

  1. Steve W says:

    Well next primary season Liz I hope you endorse a lefty who can win, instead of endorsing someone who obviously would lose, and then switching your opinion later when it’s too late to get a better more electable candidate in.

    Timing is everything and yours is really bad, Liz. Your analysis was just as bad as a small majority of Dem convention voters back in early March. Next time you, and the Lee newspapers, should vet first and set a good example. When you get it right too late it does nothing for your credibility. In fact I find you, and Lee, less credible than the Dems, on the whole, when it comes to electoral politics. At least almost half of us got it right back in March.

    But I still read your stuff. Unlike, say, Strandberg who I just can’t read because he has no good or new info, just bad assumptions. Much of the time you actually have some good info to impart. So keep up the good and improve the bad.

    • yes, at first I thought Rob had a better chance than Curtis did (still do), but the drip-drip of his shady financial decisions–and how he and his handlers chose to respond to it–destroyed the authenticity brand hastily built around his cowboy hat.

      tell me, Steve, since you are more directly connected to electoral politics than I am, are you and the party going to whine about unfair media and the evil, Russian-backed oligarch, or are you going to start doing the things that could win elections, like dropping the anti-gun crusade and openly acknowledge the failure of the Democratic approach to solving the health care crisis in this country?

      while you work on those questions, I will continue helping people being chewed up by the system in the ways my skills and time allow. the only room I allow electoral politics to occupy my time is this platform, where I keep my disgust up-to-date and share my artistic impression of this absurdity as it unfolds.

      thanks for reading.

      • Steve W says:

        I’m far ahead of you on the issues you mention. I didn’t once whine about Russian interference in our elections since we have been interfering in theirs for as long, for as best we can, as I remember. And many other countries as well. There are always people in every party who will say anything. There is no way to tell another person they can’t vote Democrat and can’t call themselves a Democrat. That doesn’t mean they aren’t crazy. Same for the Greens the Repos The Libertarians. I’ve met surely completely crazy people who have claimed all of them as their party. But there is a wide range of opinion.

        The press does influence people and one of the reasons I have fought long and hard against a return of the Clintons to Executive power is that Clinton engineered the current media landscape with the telecommunications act among other anti-trust loosening types of legislation and policy.

        Ha ha, you think there is an anti-gun crusade in MT? How many guns have you had confiscated? 5? 10? Well? Or did someone who votes Dem insult your gun?

        I always thought MT needed a combination Gun Rental/Liqueur Store. “Rent me that .45 for the night, and sell me a bullet and a 5th of whiskey, please. No, just one bag is fine.”

        I broke ranks with Obama on health care as soon as he failed to invite any single payer advocates to the White House Health Care Summit in March of 2008. He broke a very specific campaign promise he made to allow anybody who was serious about reforming our healthcare system for the better to be able to have a seat at the table. I just wanted a free and fair debate, I didn’t expect Obama to back single payer or the so called public option. But when he nixed free and fair debate I joined the loyal Democratic opposition. In fact I got the chance to Lobby Max’s staff and Tester’s staff in DC to vote for Bernie’s amendments to the ACA. Tester did in fact vote for those amendments. Anyone paying attention knows the ACA has a limited shelf life. There is far inadequate cost containment in the bill so eventually it will be unaffordable, because there is no containing the greed of the corporate imperative by inacting the corporate imperitive to facilitate their greed. . For the short term it was definitely and certainly better than nothing; for the long term it won’t work. That is the Truth that I will march for!

        It’s all based on the Republican policy answer to HillaryCare,( later call managed-care, which doesn’t work,) hatched by the fascist Heritage foundation. It was first adopted by Mitt in MA. The ACA is tweaked and in some ways better but it’s doomed in the long run. But just repealing it will precipitate chaos. As you must be aware.

        I stopped voting for Max back in 2002 after he voted to violate international law and commit war crimes in Iraq based on fake news supplied by our CIA that I was certain was fake, but he was in the dark about , supposedly. He was in the minority of Dems, but joined the majority of Republicans to waste human life and treasure for nothing. I wrote him a letter and he flat out lied to me and swore the UN had to vote a second time, so give him a break. Course that was BS. I knew he was going to win reelection anyway, so it wasn’t really bravery on my part, but he seemed a little too sleazy. Too close to the big money. Plus he flat out lied to me. I just left that office blank. I never went back until I voted Amanda Curtis for that seat in 2014.

        • Big Swede says:

          I agree Steve, the last thing anyone should want is chaos.

          By the way CA just voted in the public option to the tune of half a trillion. Can’t pay for it but the intention all that matters.

        • It will be a useful experiment if it is real. Very little in politics is real, so that something being “voted in” is probably a mask for some other objective. (They don’t count votes.) but still, is this not what you “conservatives” (yuk yuk) are all about, small experiments before big moves? Our health care system is unworkable. ACA is designed to make it nearly impossible to get health care (as opposed to (useless) insurance ). The current debates are laughable. The system, sucking money from little people,while fencing them it of the system will stand. It is bipartisan.

          I have been observing you, Swede, for many years now. I note that you never move forward, never admit error. You’ve settled dogma that blend with your consciousness in your late twenties or so. You’ve been stuck in a rut since. This is your problem. You do not grow. You do not move forward. You wallow.

        • Big Swede says:

          When it comes to new legislation any thing I’d mention would gather the same response from you as with all other topics, “It’s not true”. Kinda makes any discussion abruptly end. Could it be that you truly believe in your ability to tell truth from fiction or a ploy to further your chaos theory of believing in nothing promoting despair and unrest.

          I’ve always maintain there’s two factions of the liberal party. Those who are above normal in intelligence and those who are well below. The smarter of the two manipulate the dumber. The smarter know how to increase dependence in order to control the masses, not unlike a modern day plantation. Sowing mistrust enhances dissatisfaction with the status quo in a scheme to enact a change in culture and government to further the goal of complete dependence on a nations redistribution scheme.

          I’m glad you’ve observed me thru the last few years. I believe I have changed. When I first started commenting I thought the Republican Party was our savior. Those thoughts have changed, in fact I despise some traitor Republicans more than leaders in the Democratic Party. I still vote for Republicans knowing they will not solve problems but lessen the corrosion of our founders original intent.

          My other change is concentration on self reliance. Mortgages are paid off, fruit trees are planted, meat in the freezer and on the hoof, springs are running, garden planted, new bee hives established, weeds and prairie dogs eliminated. All that’s missing is 4 cords of wood split and stacked behind the house.

        • Eric says:

          Are you of the opinion Steve that the Dems are pro-gun, and/or pro-hunters, or pro-shooting sports? If you are, I can forward you a list of all the related bills from the last 3 sessions, and we’ll see how many “NO” votes come from legislators with a (D) behind their name.

          A much shorter list would be to tabulate the positive votes from whichever Dems – I think it could be written on the back of a business card.

        • First two paragraphs appear to be lifted from other sources, though you are conscious of being a linking person. So you made it sound like you wrote it.

          What I note most about you and Eric is that you project. You don’t actually know what other people think. You simply make a photo based on Rush, others, watching “news'” and assuming you know what is going on in their minds. You then write based on those assumptions.

          I know the so-called “liberal” and “Democrat.” I speak only of those I know, and can tell you they are predictable. And stupid to the core. But here is the key: They think they are morally and intellectually superior to people like you. They are not. Here is the other side of the coin: You think you are morally and intellectually superior to them. You are not. You are them. They are you.

        • Eric says:

          No Mark, The party’s are not the same. Steve thought he was being flippant, by asking how many gun confiscations he had seen, knowing full well that banning all firearms is a liberal fantasy. I however, have a handful of expired NRA Lifetime membership cards, and am quite different from Steve. After Al Gores defeat at the hands of the NRA, the Dems gave up on gun control for years, realizing it was a losing venture. Then, for some misguided reason, after watching Obamas gun control schemes all go down in flames they thought it was a good idea to resurrect gun control, and put it back in their playbook. Dumb, dumb, dumb.

        • Big Swede says:

          I’ll pile on. The last 3 or 4 Dems running for the US House have been rated “F” by the NRA. Tester won with a “A” rating I believe Bullock did also. The lesson is running a “F” rated opponent loses elections.

          Even the party brown nosers over at ID realized they had to silence themselves on gun control issues in order to drag their candidate over the finish line.

        • There are some things you guys just have to grasp if you are ever to understand politics:

          1) Controlled opposition. This is Bernie’s Sanders, but they are all over, Dennis Kucinich, Ron and RAnd Paul, for instance.,The purpose of Bernie’s candidacy was to keep liberals and progressives interested in the campaign. He never expected to win, does not believe the platitudes he mouths. Not do the Paul’s. Politicians are actors, all of them. None of them ‘believe’ in anything they say. They mouth words written by others to keep you occupied.

          2) Wedge politics. This is the gun control matter you both brought up. It is like abortion, something that is only used to divide and create controversy. Roe v Wade was 1972, is still used in campaigns, even state level where nothing can be done. IT will not change, as no one in power wants it changed. Are you catching on? No politician cares about it. NRA is, like Sierra Club, Move On, EartH First!, are just fronts used to keep you distracted. They are staffed by paid actors. If you come back thirty years from now, you will find these issues still being used to divide voters.

          3) Votes are not even counted. it would not matter if they were. But this is way too advanced for you two.

        • JC says:

          Mark, most people don’t buy into your form of nihilism. But go ahead and keep on trying to convert people. Nothing like a country full of nihilists to really make for a pleasant existence.

        • Goodness, you call it “nihilism?” I say this without ego or any desire to enlighten anyone or save the world, as I am fully aware the world must go on as it is. I simply enjoy understanding it better than most people, including you. I may be the happiest person I know, as I am unaffected by events, unimpressed by public personalities, and unfooled by public hoaxes. That in mind, understand what I know:

          News is fake. The weather report is often pretty good. Sporting events are often played out for real. The Super Bowl and World Series and NBA finals are scripted. Advertisers insist on it.

          Votes are not counted. They used to go to great lengths to control choices, but now, why bother? They have their machines in place. And anyway, do you really think that those in power give two shits what ordinary people think about anything?

          Politicians are liars. All of them! They cannot be “elected” otherwise. Most often they are bloodline, that is, like Baucus, descended from royalty.

          “Issues” are grist used to keep the mill in business. None are real. they make them up. There is no global warming, AIDS, terrorism, pedophilia scandals, serial killers, blah blah blah.

          There is more misdirection than direction. Donald Trump and Billy Bush read a script to misdirect you from Trump being gay. Anyone with open eyes observing Melania and Donald can see this. She is a beard!

          Do you see why I am so happy, JC? Every day is uncovering new deceptions. There is reality, I am surrounded by it, but none of it is carried on news. And here is the most important lesson: People are good. I like them. I have a problem with you, Eric and Swede, as you are so slow to understand and get so pissy, but if we were to have a beer (me, cheap white wine), I think we would walk away friends. Maybe not Eric. He is pretty full of himself.

        • JC says:

          Pretty good self description of being a nihilist. Again, you know little about me, Mark, so please keep your judgements to yourself. A little humility and understanding instead of arrogance and presumptuousness would go a long way to smoothing the barbs around your nihilism.

        • But JC, I did not describe an empty meaningless life! You seem to misunderstand the words you throw at me! Life is full, rich and meaningful, and I suspect once done here an even fuller and richer afterlife awaits. People are full of goodness. Each morning brings me down the stairs full of anticipation at the things to be discovered. I love being alive.

          There are in place overlords who use fear, hatred, fake events, and cradle-to-grave propaganda to control us. But it has been a revelation to learn they seem to understand karmic justice, and do not actually kill anyone. They use controlled media and actors to give that impression. They want us to fear each other. I am not afraid. Frightened people are easy to manipulate and govern. People divided are like children, easy to control.

          I am the anti-nihilist! And I have well-developed intuition. I am not looking for bad in you JC, but hope that you too can overcome the spawned hatred and fear that arises out of news and politics, see through it all, relax, and enjoy a life of exploration and learning. Right now you’re caught up in politics, wars, and a desire to make a better world by fighting injustice. That’s a good thing. You are just a little behind the eight ball in understanding events around us. If they are on news, they are fake. Except the weather.

        • JC says:

          Being anti-science, i.e. not understanding or accepting the evidence on climate change, is a form of nihilism. Your belief and righteousness about your opinions deny the reality of the world. You think you know more and better than others, but all you have done is to construct an alternative universe in your head and adjusted or denied the facts to fit. Denial of reality is a form of nihilism.

        • It was a slow process based on discovery of evidence, JC, that led me to the place I am at. But as a new curiosity replaced the old set of entrenched fears, I slowly realized that I was, at last a free human being. Free at last, and I wish that for you too.

          Far from being a nihilist, I am more likely an existentialist, and certainly an optimist. At any rate, I will stand my evidence against your beliefs any day, any time, and yes, I do believe in myself, but also know well the words of Kipling …

          If you can keep your head when all about you
          Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
          If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
          But make allowance for their doubting too;…

          Regarding climate change, I look forward to drinking Canadian wine. It’s a cycle, nothing more.

        • JC says:

          “I will stand my evidence against your beliefs any day”

          Lol. I look forward to your post on the evidence that there is no climate change. As to beliefs, you haven’t a clue what I do, or do not, “believe” in. Your hubris is showing once again.

          No Mark, you are a nihilist as you reject science. That is not existentialism.

          “Existentialism does not deny the validity of the basic categories of physics, biology, psychology, and the other sciences (categories such as matter, causality, force, function, organism, development, motivation, and so on). It claims only that human beings cannot be fully understood in terms of them. “

        • I did not say there is no climate change. There is always climate change. Right now we are in a warming cycle. Relax and enjoy it. You suffer from eschatological delusions. Back in the 19th century you would have run with the Millers. Come back in 200 years, you’ll find this beautiful planet in fine shape.

          One thing I have learned is that the 20th century forward has seen corruption of all institutions, from education, journalism, history, finance, the judiciary, government and yes, science. My only question is if it has always been like this. I don’t care, as my own life is full and rich. I have no delusions of power or ability to “reach” anyone. I am just on board for a ride, a fun one. I enjoy my research, new discoveries excite me.

          But it does appear that the best and strongest minds in science came from the pre-Einstein era. Human intelligence is ebbing low, the public dumbed down as never before. We are stupid and getting stupider, easily fooled, constantly manipulated by hidden hands, climate change being but one tool, others illusions like terrorism and elections working on us too. I just watched you guys bust your balls over election of a lowly representative with no more power (or desire) to force change than Paris Hilton, and it consumed you. What fun!

          Climate change is nothing more than power of suggestion coupled with confirmation bias to drive a hidden agenda, probably financial.

        • By the way, you tell me repeatedly that I cannot know what you think or believe. What, then, is the point of your writing? If your beliefs are not coming through, you’re wasting your time.

        • JC says:

          What a fool. So you don’t believe that the carbon dioxide our society is injecting into the atmosphere is having any effect on climate? You’re not only a nihilist, your form of nihilism is dangerous to the rest of the living beings on this planet.

          Please, put up a post on your site to see how your followers feel about such beliefs, and have the discussion there. I’m not going to argue science here with someone who has already acknowledged their ignorance of the topic.

          You’re a fool Tokarski, hiding behind your faith that your opinions and beliefs have the power to alter or define reality. That may be true for you between your ears, but not for the rest of the planet. Create your own reality in your head and live in it comfortably. You’re a privileged white male and can afford to do so and hide from the effects that has on the rest of the world. C’est la vie.

        • Big Swede says:

          Sorry JC, I have to agree with Mark.

        • I am Laughing here, JC, not at you, but one that Swede and I are in agreement, and two that the lines of the poem come to fruition, if you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming you … and yes, I will go to my own site. We have said everything now.

          Swede, it is good to agree with you now and then. Helps me remember that we are all just trying to figure things out, doing our best, using our brains. Be well.

        • By the way, Swede, your link is solid.

  2. Eric Coobs says:

    The outlook wan’t brilliant, for the Montana Dems that day,
    The score stood 0-9 with another election left to play.

    And so when Curtis lost in flames, and Juneau did the same,
    a sickly silence fell upon the bundlers of the game.

    Brian thought if only Robbie,
    could get a wack at that,
    the Dems might put up millions if they thought Brian had his back.

    But the Gazoo listed out bad debts,
    enough to weigh a ton,
    and when the voters studied it, they silently cried

    Then it quickly was exposed, that Robbie stiffed
    a contractor too,
    “It was just bad luck” said Robbie, but the
    voters cried “STRIKE TWO !”.

    But Greg put on a choke hold,
    to the wonderment of all,
    and in front of National TV kicked
    a reporters ass on down the hall!
    And twhen the Mikes came back on, we couldn’t
    believe what we heard, a Congressional candidate
    losing his cool, and yelling every word!

    Oh somewhere in Montana,
    the sun is shining bright.
    In Bozeman the GOP is laughing,
    and in Billings hearts are light.
    And in Cascade County, you won’t find any frowns,
    but there is on joy in Whitefish,
    Singing Robbie was voted down.

  3. Eric says:

    I must go down to the polls again

    In the land of the big blue sky

    And all I want is another lib

    And a quote to hang him by ….

  4. Steve W says:

    Liz, after looking at the numbers from the special election a couple of interesting things.

    GG got 80% of his 2016 votes statewide. Since the 2017 special election had a 23% lower voter turn out, gg actually improved his share of the vote by 3% over his 2016 numbers gg got 4 votes out of every 5 votes cast for him in the 2016.

    Rob Quist received 60% of the votes cast in 2016 for Bullock (vs gn40) So he did about 17% worse in terms of relative share of the vote than did Bullock. Rob got 3 of every 5 votes cast for Bullock. So Rob got no Republican votes. Guess you and Brian were engaging in wishful thinking. Or is that Brian’s fault for not campaigning for Rob to get Republican votes? Or you, why didn’t make make a special appeal to get independents and Republicans out for Rob? He couldn’t do it by himself because that’s a magic power that he doesn’t have.

    Rob didn’t even turn out the whole Democratic Base because even though you think they do, the data shows Montana voters don’t vote for cowboy hats.

    Rob tried to run a small regular kind of meet the people but don’t grow too big too fast low turnout campaign and he lost. He never really turned out the base. When the voter turnout is so low, Dems can’t win. We needed a really big growing right out of the gate campaign and we got a turtle slow and friendly kind of campaign. It was a rookie mistake.

    Brian had us fishing so far from the boat we fell in the water. And you and James Conner helped. The fish were the small majority of voting Dem delegates and some of the bloggeshere. and you all went straight for the lure. No one would have taken Rob seriously as a candidate without Brian’s slight of hand illusion of credibility and his endorsement.

  5. Steve W says:

    Eric wrote- “Are you of the opinion Steve that the Dems are pro-gun, and/or pro-hunters, or pro-shooting sports?”
    Eric, all the gun owners I know are Democrats. If you want to meet a bunch, I’d be glad to introduce you.

    • Eric says:

      If that’s the case Steve, what do you think about the Obama / Hillary Dems wanting to register our guns, ban our ammo, and make gun ownership as difficult as they can?

      How could a real gun owner support people like that?

      • JC says:

        Well, you republicans have a problem with your president and legislative candidates and wanting to limit first amendment rights of the press. Whatcha going to do about that? You’ve got a perp congressman on record trying to limit the presses rights.

  6. Eric says:

    Not in the same argument.

    Hillary came out and said she supports Australia-style gun confiscation, so you would have to show mw where a politician promoted legislation forcing newspapers to close their doors before you would make the comparison. I’ve seen no such proposal. Please put up a link to the bill(s), or the speech saying they want to close up a newspaper.

    You are well aware that Steve isn’t talking about real gun owners. The Dems want to sit in a circle, smoke dope, read a little Karl Marx, and hope the government supports them, and an armed population who might object to supporting them, is dangerous and subversive, and must be disarmed.

    • JC says:

      So when a perp congressman like Gianforte assaults a reporter, because he is exercising his first amendment rights, that’s ok? This indicates a congressman who doesn’t understand or value the first amendment. Of course, it doesn’t matter what you or I think. But I guarantee you it will be at the top of list of issues that GG gets slammed with if he decides to run for reelection.

      So keep on keeping on with the gun prattle. If you own a gun, that’s real whether or not you want to denigrate a gun owner because of his political persuasion. But that bullet? doesn’t matter if it comes from a dem or a rep, muslim or christian, young or old, man or woman, crazy or sane person. And it will kill just as effectively even if it comes from someone you label as not being a “real gun owner.”

      Likewise, a journalist has the same freedom to pester a politician for an answer no matter who he writes for. What the perp did to Ben Jacobs is no different than if he would have walked up to someone displaying open carry, assaulted him and grabbed the gun and said he was “sick and tired of you people.” You might say the open carry person might have defended himself and shot the perp. Likewise, GG can expect a major onslaught of words that will effectively kill his career.

  7. Eric says:

    JC I’m really trying to follow you here, but it seems that you’re justifying a gun owner, voting for Hillary, because Greg Gianforte kicked an obnoxious reporters ass? I can’t make the connection.

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