The president recently assured new car buyers that their warranties would be backed by the government in the event of domestic automaker failures or bankruptcy. Does that mean that Sens. Mark Udall and Michael Bennet along with Rep. John Salazar will be installing lube racks in their offices and replacing receptionists with mechanics? - Dennis Pierce
Have you ever tried getting ahold of a politician on the Fourth of July weekend? Federal offices were as empty as a Bernie Madoff brokerage account.
No one answered the phone anywhere. Not in Washington, D.C. Not in Grand Junction. Not in Durango. It's like it was some sort of important holiday or something.
But what do you expect?
Independence Day is not exactly a day of freedom for the politicians.
It's hard work, filled with parade riding, speech making, greasy barbecue eating and constituency mingling.
Which makes you wonder: Why
on earth would anyone run for elective office?
Anyway, there was no way to verify if Rep. Salazar would become Mr. Goodwrench. It's an interesting but improbable proposition, though.
But that brings up the most important question of all: Would you really trust your car to a politician?
Action Line says keep elected officials out of the garage.
Drop the grease gun, and slowly walk away.
In civics class, we all learned that the federal government has a system of checks and balances. That doesn't mean the legislative branch checks the oil and balances the tires.
Confidential to "Aesthetician:" The fence you dislike so much is not in the city limits, so city codes do not apply.
The landowner didn't want to be identified and said he was tired of illegal dumping on the property.
The landowner is totally within his rights to erect any kind of legal fence and doesn't need anyone's permission. And yes, the fence is legal, and "it's none of your #@%&*#! business," he added.
The landowner also advised that he would "break the knees" of anyone caught dumping more trash on the parcel.
Action Line advises you to let go. It's a nonissue.
Rowean Crader of Southfork Ranch is well-acquainted with the bridge. "It lives right next to me. In fact, I rather like it, especially the choice of railings along the sides. They look like a split-rail fence and appeal to my ranchy, country taste," Rowean wrote.
"As for names, 'Bridge Over Wilson Gulch' (like 'Bridge Over Troubled Waters'); 'Where Have All the Developers Gone?' (make up your own lyrics); 'Suicide Bridge - Choose Either End;' 'How Do I Get to _______?' (Farmington, Three Springs, Mercy Regional Medical Center, Rowean's House); and my personal favorite, 'The Buck Stops Here - and There Ain't No More.'"
Rowean put things in perspective.
"When we moved here in 1960, there warn't no bridges hardly on this end of the county - except for the one across the Animas at Telluride Ironworks and Mayflower Storage.
"Heck, there were even ranchers, cowboys, miners and sometimes even horses going into the bars and doing the two-step at the fairgrounds after a day of rodeos, barbecues and horseracing," Rowean recalled.
"The train had that good ol' coal smoke, and no one complained.
"The Villa, T-Bone's Steak House, the Mandarin Cafe, Wednesday night spaghetti at Velma's Supper Club for 75 cents and the Golden Horseshoe as eateries of choice," he wrote.
"Lou L'Amour hung out at the Strater Hotel and had breakfast each morning. He always sat at the first table on the left as you entered the dining room.
"Lest I become overly nostalgic and too smart-mouthed, I will say that Sema Construction has done an amazing job on the bridges and widening Highway 160 and done it most expeditiously. I fully believe that it will all come together in the future, and we will have a viable highway system in the Grandview area that will be an asset to our area," Rowean wrote.
"Even if it is considered the 'Bridge to Nowhere,' I'm not going anywhere either, so we are going nowhere together."
E-mail questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301. You can request anonymity if you remember Woolworth's luncheonette, Parson's Drugs or the Old Muldoon.