Andrew McCullough's Blog

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Shurtleff, Dylan and Barr

August 30, 2008

This morning's SL Trib reports on the operation (No. 7) that Mark Shurtleff, our current Attorney General, underwent yesterday to save his leg -- the only alternative, they say, to amputation. I want to say once again that, while I staunchly oppose many of the policies of his office, I like Mark, and I enjoy being around him. One of his assistant's once told me that he didn't have much of a sense of humor. That just isn't true. You can even see it in this time of crisis. He is actually a pretty funny guy. And, while I hope he is not re-elected, my best wishes and prayers are with him for a complete recovery. Hope to see you around, Mark, and in good spirits.

Bob Dylan is coming to Utah tomorrow for a concert. It is outside, and the weather may not cooperate. but this is a man who inspired several generations to make the world a better place. And in terms of the message I am preaching (while not exactly what he would preach, I think), here is an excerpt from the song "A Hard Rain's Gonna Fall" that inspires me to do my best at it:

And I'll tell it and think it and speak and breathe it,
And reflect from the mountain so all souls can see it,
And I'll stand on the ocean until I start sinking,
But I'll know my song well before I start singing,

Thanks, Bob for the inspiration.

And, finally, I got an e-mail from somebody who thought the Republican VP nominee will be more libertarian than most, and seemed pleased. I am not pleased with anything the Republicans do. They have spent 8 years destroying our freedoms, and we should give them what they deserve, a real thrashing. Vote for Bob Barr for President, and see his website for ways to help. Please see also updates this weekend on the website. AND, watch for the major overhaul of my campaign website, coming sometime over the next week at What I have seen of it is quite wonderful. Oh, and the campaign (and party) now has a real working phone number: 801 565-1988. Call and volunteer to help.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Left out again?

August 23, 2008

A supporter sent a calendar item from the Utah Policy website announcing a debate at the Hinckley Institute at the University of Utah on September 30, for the Attorney General candidates. Unfortunately, my name was not included. This is not unusual, and if asked, the sponsoring organization will usually say something like "we only want the candidates with a realistic chance to win". Well, the initial polls in this race show the Democrat candidate, Jean Welch Hill, with almost no chance at winning. So, why not just acknowledge that, and only invite the current Attorney General to tell why is so loved and admired? On the other hand, if the Hinkley Institute wants to air the issues and examine all valid points of view, they should invite me. I am a breath of fresh air, and will change the nature of the debate. Rather than just arguing over who can be "tougher on crime", we would examine the issue of whether the drug war, which puts thousands of young people in prison every year, is a total catastrophe, and should be ended. Crime rates would plummet immediately, and society would be safer. But, for now, such a point of view will not be heard.

If you agree that the debate needs all points of view, contact the Hinckley Institute right now and ask them to include me in their debate. And then, send a contribution, get a lawn sign, put on a bumper sticker, or simply forward this to your Utah friends and ask them to do the same. <>

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A note on the Olympics.

August 20, 2008

I have tried to watch as much of the Olympics as I can over the last 10 days or so. And since I am a season ticket holder at the University of Utah gymnastics, I tried to watch those events. Last night our little American gymnastics hero, Shawn Johnson, finally won her gold medal on the balance beam. And during her interview afterwards, she warmed my heart by her very quiet political statement, which consisted of wearing "peace symbol" earrings. Nobody mentioned them, but as someone who opposes Mr. Bush's war and all the infringements on civil liberties which have come with it, I was indeed very proud of this American gold medal winner. Way to go, girl!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Latest news

August 19, 2008

I returned to Utah from vacation late last night, and found news and issues awaiting me. This morning's radio and newspapers report that the president of Westminster College in Salt Lake City has signed on to a letter circulating among college presidents encouraging states to lower their drinking age to 18. The higher age restriction, according to some, encourages binge drinking, and is widely violated. I have always thought this was a stupid law, designed by those who want to continue making decisions for other people as long as they can. I have wondered why younger voters do not rebel and throw those who want to run their lives out of office. I fully support the initiative of the college presidents, and urge younger voters to flex their muscles this year by voting Libertarian and demanding their equal rights as citizens.

The Deseret News also reports today an effort by Republicans in the legislature to stop citizens from making laws by initiative process, or from repealing bad laws by referendum. this is after the voters of this state overwhelmingly crushed a law on vouchers earlier this year. Some may remember the citizen initiative from several years ago which substantially restricted civil forfeitures of those accused (but not convicted) of certain crimes. After intense lobbying from the current Attorney General, the legislature overrode that initiative, and gave police back their right to take property which they claim was illegally gained or used. Now the legislature will likely act to atop voters from overruling them again. Once again, it is time for voters to rebel and to throw those who want to run their lives out of office. Help me send a message that you do not like state officials telling you what to do. Now, before it is too late.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


August 13, 2008

I am on vacation in New York State, so will write only briefly. Various news sources report that the Governor and the Attorney General did not read the Constitution of Utah before changing the State's work day to a ten hour day, four days a week. The Constitution says, in Article XVI, Section 6, that all state employees shall work only eight hour days. Now the Attorney General says that there is "enough ambiguity" in the Constitution to defend the State against any law suits on the subject. I fail to see the ambiguity. why not just admit that you blew it and didn't do your job?

Had enough? See previous blogs for ways to help change things. More soon.
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