Your Ideas

Aspen to Central America
9:42 am
Tue April 29, 2014

On the Road: The American Experience

The bike and the West
Credit Skippy Mesirow

Aspen, CO. – Douglas, AZ.

Not all those who wander are lost. The script words on my friend’s ribcage immerge from the water. The clank of plastic glasses and the laugh of friends fill the air – the last hot tub of the season in Aspen, the embodiment of joy. Amazing friends, a breathtaking environment, an active lifestyle, great conversations, strong embraces. It’s what we all cherish and why we all call Aspen home. Yet for all its opportunity, all its character, and all its glory, to truly expand ones horizons, to expand ones understanding, empathy, and context for the world, one must venture out.

Read more
From St. Petersburg
9:57 am
Sun April 27, 2014

At the Debate, Questions of Ukraine and Old Russia

Arnoldas Pranckeviciys addressing a student's question
Credit Helen Ward

I spent most of today in classrooms judging debate rounds. Topics varied from the serious like should governments allow completely unfettered free speech to more social topics like should marijuana be legalized? It was a long day with 9 rounds of debates. By 4pm everyone was exhausted. The agenda, however, called for mandatory appearance in the assembly hall to hear Arnoldas Pranckeviciys speak.

Read more
Campaign Finance Ruling
8:54 am
Fri April 25, 2014

Campaign Finance Post-McCutcheon

The April 2 five-four decision of the United States Supreme Court on campaign finance in McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission has elicited the predictable polar opposite reactions from commentators.  The decision has been hailed by many as reinforcing the fundamental Constitutional right of free speech and strengthening the role of the parties in the political process.  Conversely, the decision has been vilified in some quarters as giving the wealthy a larger voice in politics than they may already have to the detriment, it is said, of the general public.

Read more
From St. Petersburg
8:39 am
Fri April 25, 2014

During a Conflict & Debate

Credit Helen Ward

My journalist friend Neil told me two things before leaving for Russia. First, it is often the best time to visit a country when we are embroiled in conflict. He is a war correspondent for the New York Times so he has a certain proclivity for conflict, but his point was that when tensions are escalating and both sides are being fed exaggerated points of view, remembering that we are all human and want essentially the same things; peace, prosperity, health, a better world for the next generation, beauty, poetry, music and dance -- is important.

Read more
Aspen Poets' Society
1:05 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Poem: For My Father

Laurie James
Credit Laurie James


My father said everything

when he whistled his way home

in the dust of a square evening,

that held the trail of a shooting star 

in the violet sky.

A Peter Pan in work boots, 

his cap set cocked-back,

his one-seeing eye tangoing 

to the tune of “It’s Only Make Believe, I Love You”

above the crunch of gravel underfoot.

He should have moved to the Crazy Mountains

worn a bowler

learned to play the viola 

Instead, he drew the bow of a welder

Read more