Thursday, December 31, 2009

State outrage

"A Fruita man accused of dragging a dog to death on Colorado National Monument was ordered today held without bond over the coming weekend.

Steven Romero, 37, is scheduled for a detention hearing and arraignment Monday afternoon at the Wayne N. Aspinall federal building. Romero, shackled and dressed in a yellow jumpsuit from the Mesa County Jail where he’s being held, expressed bewilderment at the allegations.

“I don’t get it,” he said of the charges, sitting alone at the defendant’s table in court this afternoon. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle Heldmyer then rose from her seat, walked toward Romero, and tossed a copy of the charges on the table in front of Romero.

Heldmyer asked U.S. Magistrate Judge Laird Milburn to order Romero held without bond for the next three days, requesting the detention hearing be scheduled for Monday. She indicated the government at that time will seek to keep Romero locked up.

Romero expressed concerns about sitting in the jail over the weekend and said he’ll be hiring his own attorney. He told the judge he’s employed as an over-the-road trucker.

“So, in other words I’ll be sitting in jail and probably lose my job, too?” Romero asked Milburn.

“Yes,” the judge responded.

Romero faces a maximum three years in prison, and a fine up to $100,000 and a year of mandatory parole, if convicted on a federal charge of felony cruelty to animals."

Sitting in jail and losing his job should be the least of his worries. He is lucky he was held without bond. The crime is outrageous and the public response is appropriate according to the crime. If he were able to bond out, from what I read, there may be people willing to risk jail to do some damage to him. The evidence is pretty overwhelming. He told one witness that he was going to kill the dog. The monument has his truck on camera going in with the dog in the back and then coming out shortly after without the dog. The owner posted a comment on the first article that it was his dog and had been stolen from Delta along with a second dog. The second dog is safe and on his way home, thank heavens. No one has been stupid enough to argue that public reaction is too strong because it is "just a dog". Everyone who has commented appears to have the sense of knowing that if this guy would commit this kind of crime against an animal, he probably wouldn't hesitate to commit this kind of a crime against another human being. The only thing good that may come out of this terrible event is that because it was a crime committed on the National Monument it is federal. The feds have a way of bringing the hammer down in a way state and local law enforcement can't. I wish them well. I don't want this man on the street anytime soon. Callie got extra hugs tonight and my protective nature regarding her has obviously increased. It would kill me if she came to harm through the violence of an individual or group. No one will love you like a dog will. Unconditionally. She trusts me to protect her and I take that responsibility very seriously.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Alcoholics can justify any behavior

Mysterious Alcoholic Author Steals His Own Books From Boulder Book Store:

"A manager at the Boulder Book Store in Boulder, Colorado says that an author shoplifted several copies of his own book from the store, but he won't say which author. The manager, Christopher Ohman, told the New York Times he thought the author was somewhat entitled to the copies.

He continued:

In some ways I can kind of understand that logic. I mean, it's a commonly held misconception that authors get as many copies of their books as they want, and that's not always the case.

Ohman told the Times that he though the author struggled with alcoholism, which contributed to his tendency to steal his books. He would not, however, disclose the name of the author.

Nor would the store's current manager, Scott Foley, who--in an interview for the Boulder Daily Camera--said that the incident has become part of the training manual for book store security officers.

The Times article has prompted the prominent national gossip website Gawker to publish a page postulating which Boulder author could possibly have orchestrated such a plot. Gawker jokingly speculated that Boulder residents Jon Krakauer and Jello Biafra (Eric Reed Boucher) may be the culprits.

Until one of the Boulder Book Store employees discloses the identity of the mysterious book thief, we're left in the dark. For now, no Boulder writer seems safe from national speculation."

I can understand the logic as well. However, if the author had been sober, I'm guessing the thought may have crossed his mind, but he would not have acted on it. In our sobriety we may have those "logical" thoughts, but because we are thinking more clearly, we rarely carry them to conclusion.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Split decision


"WHEAT RIDGE - After a split vote, a union spokeswoman offered conflicting statements on Tuesday as to whether any Colorado grocery workers had met the necessary requirements to go on strike.

A majority of King Soopers workers accepted their employer's 'last, best and final' contract proposal.

The UFCW Local 7's outgoing president, Ernie Duran, Jr. had urged workers to strike.

Safeway workers voted to reject the deal, but did not meet the two-thirds margin need to prompt a strike, union spokeswoman Laura Chapin initially told 9NEWS on Tuesday.

Hours later, Chapin backed off from her original assertion there would be no strike action.

A union rule, said Chapin, allowed Duran to apply the two-thirds strike authorization rule to the membership as a whole or to individual bargaining units.

Chapin said Duran chose to measure strike authorization by units, which are largely defined by city.

By that measure, some Safeway workers in select stores did approve a strike, but no action is imminent, Chapin said.

Chapin requested more time to research whether Duran's decision was made in writing and to clarify what happens in the four King Soopers"

The vote tally as of yesterday was 66% of Kings/CM employee approving the contract and 63% of Safeway employees rejecting the contract. Kings employees will continue working under the new agreement. The union had a Kings representative say that the reason Kings employees accepted the offer is because the company threatened to lock empoloyees out if Safeway went on strike. I don't think that is why the offer was accepted. The vote was simply to protect themselves in this hard economy. I am glad this is finally settled.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Ousted grocery-union execs get big parting gifts - The Denver Post

"The family members who run one of Colorado's most powerful labor unions are being forced out of power, but not before they receive parting gifts paid for with union dues.

Ernie Duran Jr., the longtime president of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 7, will receive his union vehicle, a Ford F-350 pickup, as a retirement gift.

Outgoing union secretary-treasurer Stan Kania will drive away in a union-purchased Ford Five Hundred.

Both gifts were approved by Local 7's executive board, in what 7th vice president Will Joseph called a long-standing tradition.

'If every other president got the vehicle on departure, I don't see changing the trend,' Joseph said.

Several UFCW Local 7 presidents who served in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s said they did not receive vehicles as retirement gifts and had never heard of that being done.

Duran and Kania declined interviews through a union spokeswoman."

I won't discuss the union here as I received some advice not to. Click on the link to lean more about Ernie and company. All I will say is that it makes my blood boil.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Snow December 8, 2009

Only one good picture of Callie. She was too busy running as fast as she could to kick up as much snow as possible. She loves this stuff

There's a car under there somewhere!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Let it Snow

"The city of Grand Junction is under an accident alert this afternoon, as accident reports are piling up due to the continued snowfall and slick roads.

The alert means drivers involved in non-injury crashes within city limits should move their vehicles off the road, exchange information with the other driver and file an accident report within 48 hours. Grand Junction police will still respond to accidents involving injuries, suspected intoxication and hit-and-run.

Multiple accidents have been reported across Mesa County and the Grand Valley in the last hour, including rollover crashes on Broadway on the Redlands and on Interstate 70 just on the other side of the Utah state line. Accidents have also been reported on the Fifth Street Bridge and at U.S. Highway 6&50 and 23 Road. No serious injuries have been reported so far, although the southbound lanes of the Fifth Street Bridge are currently closed.

Grand Junction is under a winter storm warning, effective until Tuesday evening. Snow that began falling in the valley this afternoon is expected to intensify tonight and carry over into Tuesday morning. Forecasts are calling for up to 8 inches in the valley."

We haven't had snow like this in a few years. It's been great! I can't wait to see the canyons in the spring...tons of water for Callie to dive in...what a blast!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Good Advice

Upon some good advice I have deleted all references to my issues with work. It will not be discussed here any longer. I doubt it was job threatening. I didn't say anything bad about my company, my issues are with the union alone. However, this person is right, it is better to err on the side of caution as it is likely we no longer live in a democracy, we just think we do. The voting will be over in a couple of weeks, and I doubt my insane rantings will have much effect. I prefer to focus on other things at this time. I want to get back to my writing and have work be the means to give me time for that. Thank you to the person who suggested I protect myself. You are right and I understand more than ever how cruel and unfair this world can be, especially to a lowly useless grocery store worker.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009