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Speed Week Canceled Don’t Panic

Posted on 23 July 2015 by Howard Copelan

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Howard Copelan, Publisher

We wrote about the demise of the Bonneville Salt Flats some 25 years ago. That was after Speed Week was canceled or cut short for the fourth year in a row.

We had the scientists and the racers all swear on a stack of whatever they swore on that racing on Bonneville was a thing of the past.

Funny how quickly we forget.

The sun came out and stayed out and we had 25 years of great race weather.

The last two years have been wet and like a quarter of a century ago people are predicting that the Salt Flats will die.

Eventually they will be right.

In two hundred or 500 years the Bonneville Salt Flats will cease to be. We won’t be around to see it but the flats like everything else are temporary. Until then however there will be races. 20 or 25 years of great races and punctuated by two, three or four years of wet weather.

We also guarantee that during those wet years scientists are going to be screaming global warming or coming ice age or climate change. We like the phrase climate change the best because it means absolutely nothing.

Our daughter was very annoyed with us when we scoffed at the idea. We couldn’t see the facts of climate change right before our eyes. We did see those facts we just didn’t get excited about them.

There is something to get excited about. It is getting very little press but we have heard that the Sahara and the Arabian Desert are getting greener with every passing year. Seems that there could be an upside to global warming and the melting icecaps quench a thirsty desert.

The warmer it gets the wetter it gets and while some new wetness could mean rising sea levels what if it means more abundant rainfall?

We just read another disaster prediction about global warming. It looked pretty bad but the only thing that has already happened and can be seen via satellite is the greening of the deserts.

Yes the future sounded otherwise awful but what if the worse case scenario does not come to pass?

Who would disdain a little more green?

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Rational Fears

Posted on 16 July 2015 by Howard Copelan

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Howard Copelan, Publisher

President Obama believes that despite their hatred for the West, Jews and Christians, the Iranians are a rational people who will understand that their best interests are in not starting a nuclear war.

Thing is, rational is a very subjective measure to a man.

History, and even the present, is full of examples that reason and rational vary from place to place and from time to time.

In the 1980’s serial killers were considered a western phenomena by Soviet sociologists and so dozens of Soviet serial killers got away with killing thousands of children. In the 1950’s Chairman Mao ordered all Chinese to surrender their steel and iron tools to help in the Great Leap forward. Millions starved. After the first bomb obliterated Hiroshima, it took a week and another bomb on Nagasaki, to get the Japanese to give up. Most infamously the murder machines of the death camps in Nazi Germany continued to work while the Red Army was marching on Berlin.

None of those policies made any sense from a rational point of view or at least from a rational American point of view.

Each and everyone of them made some kind of sense if one was a Communist, Fascist or Nazi. People like their world views, they like their world views so much that they will pretty much do anything to keep those views, even if it means suffering to keep them.

Kind of explains why the Iranians endured 20 years of economic sanctions when it just made simple sense to stop waging war against America and the West.

And now peace has broken out or so it is being touted.

Thing is, we don’t see the Iranians becoming rational Americans in their thinking.

They are still Persians. Arab hating, Sunni loathing, Shiite Persians who believe either in the coming of the Shiite Messiah, the Mahdi, in the very near future, or in the inherent superiority of Persian culture over any other culture in the world.

For Americans to believe that we can somehow convert the Iranians to stop waging war because it makes our kind of sense is about the most irrational belief we have presented.

The Persians are sharpening their knives and building their bomb because it makes sense to them.

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Donald Burnum Memorial

Posted on 14 July 2015 by Howard Copelan

WWPD Detective Donald Burnham

WWPD Detective Donald Burnham


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Threads That Bind

Posted on 09 July 2015 by Howard Copelan

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Howard Copelan, Publisher

This has been a week of tragedies and miracles.

Both so intense and all consuming it is kind of hard to fully understand them.

Those of a religious bent will find a reason to continue to believe, those who are not will find more reason not to believe.

There really is no right answer to all this.

It just is.

Once we arrived naked and squalling life, our lives are full of comings and goings of others until we leave just as naked but perhaps not as loud.

What lays after no one knows but many care about.

We may have had a peek over that hilly Bourne where no one returns last fall. But for the life of us we cannot remember except for the simple feeling that we were loved and cared about.

And then we came back.

Perhaps that feeling was all that was needed and perhaps to stay in this world we all need to feel loved and cared about.

They are threads of a tapestry that entwines us all.

Not only for the here and now but also for the past and the future.

If we could look upon this weaving we would surely be astounded at all that came before us and all that will come after.

And so the Fates weave, tirelessly and without complaint.

Once they were believed in venerated and feared.

Not any more.

But still it is a beautiful work.

And perhaps that is why they continue, for beauty’s sake.

And for beauty’s sake we all should continue until our threads run out on their own.

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Much Ado About Nothing

Posted on 02 July 2015 by Howard Copelan

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Our facebook page exploded last week.

We had friends who were predicting the end of civilization and then we had other friends who tinted themselves in rainbow colors and went Yippee.

We seriously began thinking about getting a new set of friends and then we realized we did.

Thanks our history we have quite a few friends who could care less about last week’s SCOTUS decision.

It is not that they are or are not gay or gay sympathizers or devout traditional Christians or Jews. Our friends who could care less because they aren’t Americans.

The Supreme Court of the United States decision and a couple of euros will get a cup of coffee in Paris.

We are going to go out on a limb here and suggest that in a couple of years from now even Americans will not care about last Friday.

There were a lot of other headlines that we can read.

The Greek crisis, ISIS, Syria, heck Russia just declared that the Baltic states may have become independent illegally.

Yes we know it made the news, on and on again but seriously we are sure that for all the fanfare gay marriage is probably the least important headline of the 21st century.

There just not that many gay who are getting married and there never will be.

Some may cheer others may jeer at gay friendly children’s books but they will remain on the shelves and not checked out of the library.

Yes one may lobby even sue for gender neutral grammar  toilets, but they will go unused unless of course by a desperate boy or girl who really needs to go NOW.

There is a world going on and tinting one’s facebook photo the colors of the rainbow is silly.

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Local Teens Honor Military Veterans In Stirring Essays

Posted on 02 July 2015 by Howard Copelan


Mackenzie Leishman Voice of Democracy 3rd place national winner of $10,000 scholarship Elko VFW Post 2350

Austria 1944.  It was a grey morning, still damp from the rain storm the previous night…and there was a shed.  ITt was about three stories tall, but only 8 feet wide and 8 feet long.  It was faded and falling apart and the roof was caving in and there was blood seeping out from around the edges on the ground.  Inside this shed were stacks of bodies.  Once handsome men, now deformed and degraded into shells of their former selves.  Some were wearing only sacks, some had no eye lids, and the saddest part?  They couldn’t have had the mercy of a quick death.  These human beings had taken weeks to dies.  I remember Carl Pacini, one of the first men to discover a concentration camp, describing all these things to me and crying.  Almost 70 years ago, and he still can’t sleep through the night without nightmares.  And yet…I sleep safely each night.  How unfair is that?

My little sister asked me, “what’s a veteran?” I told her tho only answer I had.  “A hero.”  “What color is his cape?”  “Well, some hers don’t wear capes.”  “Like grandpa?”  “Yeah…like grandpa.”

My grandpa was drafted into the Vietnam war, and when he came home, they yelled at him and his fellow veterans.  THe crowds of people spat on them as they walked to their taxi cabs.  And so a couple weeks ago, I sat at his funeral and then the guns rang 3 loud shots.  It was the most final thing I had ever heard.  And then taps sounded throughout the room, and it was really the respect he should have gotten the moment he stepped off that plane back 1973.

centracom1501There’s nothing I can say that hash;t already been said.  The veterans have kept America safe since the day the military branches were created, they’ve protected and defended my unalienable rights and they dob’t even know me.  America has been victorious in every major war because of the Veterans.  It’s because of them; we are a democracy for the people by the people.  It is because of them in Iwo Jima, when the dust cleared, it was our flag still standing.  No one else’s.  They aren’t important to our history, because they are out history.

Our future…we wouldn’t even have one without them.  I can’t predict what’s going to happen, if I did, I would be rich.  But the veterans will be here to lead and guid the soldiers in my generation–the future veterans.  I am so grateful to look around me and see that my friends, even now, are already preparing for the front lines of battle.  I have five personal friends, months from graduation, that are already insisted.  And some day when my own future daughter does the V.F.W. speech, and she will, she will be telling the stories of my generation and the one before and how her great uncle wore one of those green berets, and her grandpa was an accomplished sniper, and hoe her great grandma was in the Vietnam war.  And she git all of this pride, from her mother.

I picked up a newspaper recently and found a name in the obituaries that I never wanted to see.  Carl Pacini died at age 89, 7 days after my birthday this year, and just two days before his 90th birthday.  I’m so proud of my friend, my veteran.  This speech was for you.


Alia Minoletti 6th Place National winner (patriot pen) $2,000 Scholarship. VFW Post 8194 Eureka, Nevada

Alia Minoletti
6th Place National winner (patriot pen) $2,000 Scholarship.
VFW Post 8194 Eureka, Nevada

Why I Appreciate America’s Veterans

“The things that the flag stands for were created by the experiences of a great people.  Everything it stands for was written by their lives.  The flag it the embodiment, not of sediment, but of history,” (President Woodrow Wilson).  Our flag and Veterans have much in common.  They represent out strength as a nation and the history they created and protected.  Veterans are a gigantic brick wall protecting us from out enemies that try to destroy our way of life.  Our American Veterans have been fighting for our freedom since the Revolutionary War.  They have fought and died for our freedom and have protected all of our rights that are guaranteed to us by the U.S. Constitution and Bull of Rights.  Some of the rights I value most are out right to free speech, to vote, to bear arms and the right to choose our religion.

I have family members who are veterans.  My mom’s grandpa and my dad’s grandpa were veterans.  I also have an uncle that is currently serving our country.  He is a Marine and has been to Iraq twice and Afghanistan once.  I am very proud of him and thankful for what he had done for our country. m I also appreciate the veterans’ families that are left behind who constantly worry about their loved ones not knowing if there will ever see them again.  I’be seen my aunt spend many holidays without my uncle and it is just as hard for my aunt as it is for my uncle.

fishing (1)I appreciate America’s veterans because they represent many characteristics that I admire.  Veterans are brave, courages and unselfish.  Veterans are willing to go fight and kill their enemies at home or in foreign countries.  THey learn to adapt to the different cultures and unselfishly agree to leave their families for an unknown amount of time.  The one characteristic that I value most in our veterans is the fact that they are willing to pay the ultimate price by giving up their lives so I can live free.  I don’t know of any other way to show my appreciation to our veterans than to give my life to the fullest and never take for granted the wonderful gift of freedom they have given to me and my family.

I hope veterans know their sacrifice was not water and we honor them.  Thank you veterans!

Fandango2c-gold- 2015

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Racist & Rude

Posted on 26 June 2015 by Howard Copelan

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Of all the stupid things we heard this week the assertion that the Confederate Battle Flag is not a symbol of racism is the stupidest.

Of course it is. The flag may not only be a symbol of racism but let say it was flying over a gathering in a park we would not expect to see any black people there unless they were either servants or sacrifices.

We would avoid such gatherings as we would those who are flying the Swastika. Yes we know that the crooked cross can also be a good luck symbol for Hindus and also a sign of the Basque people.

But in the last 80 years or so the Basques have replaced the right angles with paisleys and while Hindus still use it in India they don’t in the West.

Kind of like our friend from New Orleans who proudly flies the Stars and Bars above his house in Israel.

His neighbors don’t think much of it. Just a quirky thing that the Yankee does every once in a while. But as he gave up correcting them from calling him a Yankee he would not dream of flying the flag in the States.

Here it is racist and rude.

Yes brave men died fighting under it and venal men fought for the Union. But there is a reward for fighting for a just cause as one’s sins are mostly forgiven. And there is a price one pays for fighting for evil. One’s bravery is forever sullied by the despicable cause.

It may not be fair but it is true.

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In Memory of Albert B. Charboneau

Posted on 25 June 2015 by Howard Copelan

Bert 3Albert Benjamin Charboneau, 72, of Las Vegas, Nevada passed away June 18, 2015 from a long illness with asbestosis. He was born April 21, 1943 to Albert R. and Wilma Charboneau in Idaho Falls, Idaho. He was the eldest of five children. Charboneau was a long time business owner and entrepreneur in Idaho and Nevada.

In the summer of 1961 he met his love of his life, Eleanor Jewkes at a local drive-in. He was smitten at first sight and told her that he would marry her on their first date. That same year, November 24, they were married at the Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Idaho Falls. Together, they had three children, David, Michael and Kathleen. To Albert, the most important thing in life was his family and extended family.

He was a sharp businessman and together with Eleanor they were the proud owners of Iona Merc, Highland Market, Midget Market and Sconey’s in Idaho Falls and Frontier Foods in Wendover, Nevada. Plus taxi companies, gas station/car washes, produce and bar delivery services, as well as other various retail oriented businesses. Prior to his successful business career, he worked at Idaho National Engineering Labs (INEL) for contractors Catyletic, Westinghouse, NRF and the Atomic Energy Commission.

Albert loved family get togethers and was always on the lookout for a new adventure and challenge. His house was always full of family and friends and he was known for his memorable 4th of July parties on the river. He enjoyed a good card game, round of golf or long conversation. He was extremely well liked and never met a stranger.

Albert was preceded in death by his parents Albert Sr. and Wilma and brothers Robert (Bobby) and Jimmy. He is survived by his “Love of His Life” Eleanor; children David, Michael (Sue) and Kathleen (Tony) Kunkel; his sisters June (Larry) Taylor, Patsy Charboneau and honorary brother/cousin Ron (Faye) Eccher. He is also the very proud grandfather of Amy, Daniel, Damien, William and Emily; and five great-grandchildren Alizay, Kiana, Liam, Amari and Bailey.

He will always be remembered for his smile, generosity and his love and devotion to family and friends.

Memorial services will be held Saturday, June 27, 2015, 11:30 a.m. at Buck Miller Hann Funeral Home, 825 E. 17th Street, Idaho Falls, Idaho. A family viewing will begin at 11:00 a.m.

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Farce, Trajeday & Monty Python

Posted on 19 June 2015 by Howard Copelan

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Howard Copelan, Publisher

How goes the old line history repeats itself first as tragedy and then as farce.

We appreciate the sentiment but we think he got it backwards.

The oh so serious story of Bruce Jenner becoming Caitlyn was lifted from a story line in the life of Biran.

“FRANCIS: Why are you always on about women, Stan?

STAN: I want to be one.

REG: What?

STAN: I want to be a woman. From now on, I want you all to call me ‘Loretta’.

REG: What?!

LORETTA: It’s my right as a man.

JUDITH: Well, why do you want to be Loretta, Stan?

LORETTA: I want to have babies.

REG: You want to have babies?!

LORETTA: It’s every man’s right to have babies if he wants them.

REG: But… you can’t have babies.

LORETTA: Don’t you oppress me.

REG: I’m not oppressing you, Stan. You haven’t got a womb! Where’s the foetus going to gestate?! You going to keep it in a box?!

LORETTA: crying

JUDITH: Here! I– I’ve got an idea. Suppose you agree that he can’t actually have babies, not having a womb, which is nobody’s fault, not even the Romans’, but that he can have the right to have babies.

FRANCIS: Good idea, Judith. We shall fight the oppressors for your right to have babies, brother. Sister. Sorry.

REG: What’s the point?


REG: What’s the point of fighting for his right to have babies when he can’t have babies?!

FRANCIS: It is symbolic of our struggle against oppression.

REG: Symbolic of his struggle against reality.”

Back in 1979  it was pretty funny because reality and absurdity were clearly defined.

We don’t think Monty Python would play well now.

Stan/Loretta would no longer be funny but courageous.

The Norwegian Blue Parrot would be dead but self identify as alive or black as the nut job from Spokane has done.

We used to laughed so hard with Monty Python we cried.

Now we just cry.

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Epidemic of Dumb Ass

Posted on 11 June 2015 by Howard Copelan

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Howard Copelan, Publisher

Is there a sale on dumb ass pills in Ely?

If a woman is married to a guy who is a very, very deep shade of brown and have a couple or three brown children she kind of has to give up her membership in the KKK.

It is a rule.

And while she might miss out on that famous after the cross burning potato salad forever she also be exempt from being called a racist.

Because that would make her accuser a dumb ass.

Going after the job of the mother of the couple or three brown skinned babies compounds the dumb ass-ery to the point head exploding.

So most of Wyatt Cox’s team lost the election.

Big deal!!

  There is another in two years.

Instead Cox and some of his supporters have downed the dumb ass pills and are calling for the professional scalp of Pat Fua, the mother of those brown babies, for being a racist.

Head is exploding.

They aren’t only dumb asses.

They are mean.

Speaking of dumb ass-ery we never thought we would ever read about our Jewish son being barred entry to a Jewish place (Temple Mount) in a Jewish city (Jerusalem) in a Jewish country (Israel) because he was Jewish.

Seems like the cop must have downed a double portion himself.

A couple of years ago we went to the Snake Valley Festival.

And while the folks were trying to put on a brave face, it was still pretty sad.

Everyone knew that Las Vegas was simply too big and too powerful to stop.

Still those brave souls girded their loins and went out to battle.

Then a miracle happened.

They won.

And they kept on winning.

So every time you open the tap, turn on a hose or go fishing in a stream up here in the north say a thank you to those brave souls in Snake Valley who refused to give up when they knew all else was lost.

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