Dave Simpson: These Guys Don't Take Prisoners

Columnist Dave Simpson writes, "Not selecting how-to manuals on sex for a school or public library does not constitute 'book banning.' Caring what your little one is exposed to is not Nazi Germany."

Dave Simpson

August 07, 20234 min read

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(Cowboy State Daily Staff)

Been spending some time with my peeps this summer.

My posse.

My homies.

There are three of us, each 72 years old. One was born in South Dakota but has lived in Casper most of his life. We met at UW, and have been friends for 54 years. The other guy was born in Nebraska and now lives in California. A johnny-come-lately, we've only been friends for 33 years.

I was born in Chicago, but have lived in Wyoming, on and off, for 31 years. (Which I'm sure isn't good enough for some of you natives, but suck it up, Buttercup.)

The three of us are certifiable old white guys, have each served time in the news biz, and are independent as retired pigs on ice. Two of the three either don't have cable TV, or gave up television entirely. They get their news elsewhere. I'm the only one who still watches cable TV.

When we get together, we spend whole afternoons and evenings chewing the fat. Adult beverages are consumed. Many brothers aren't as close as we are.

Some observations from our latest fat-chewing marathons:

- The guy from Casper says Wyoming's constitution should be amended so that whenever a Speaker of the Wyoming House lets a bill die in his desk drawer, it automatically appears as a ballot question in the next election. Let the voters decide. (A  bill keeping teachers from talking about sex to Kindergartners through Third Graders died in the speaker's drawer last session, after passing in the Wyoming Senate.)

- We agree that not selecting how-to manuals on sex for a school or public library does not constitute “book banning.” Caring what your little one is exposed to is not Nazi Germany.

- Hapless Joe should give up the Obama trot when approaching podiums. It looks silly. You're 80, Joe.

- Now that his kid has been charged with failure to pay taxes for two years, and was prepared to plead guilty to misdemeanors until the sweetheart deal was rejected, isn't it time for Dad Joe to quit hectoring us about not “paying our fair share?” Answer me this: Didn't Hunter know about paying his fair share?

- Reporters need to quit using the term “debunked.” Who died and made them the judges of things that are or are not “bunk?” Isn't the continued debate over long-term effects of the Covid vaccines evidence that debunked beliefs sometimes get “unbunked,” or put back on the table to determine degree of bunkedness?

- When I was a reporter, you didn't get to say who was right and who was wrong. That was for readers  to decide. God created mean old editors to snatch reporters bald-headed if they did that.

– Now that Russia has shown its brutal colors, shouldn't we quit calling American politicians assigned to lead tough assignments “czars?” (Some czars met bloody ends.) How about “pooh-bah,” as in “Failed Border Pooh-bah Kamala Harris?” Works for me.

- Two of my peep colleagues have a distinctly dim view of politicians. One made a qualified exception for bulldog Sen. Chuck Grassley.

(My jaded wife's favorite term is, “Ain't nobody goin' down.” She fits right in with my homies.)

I'm the cockeyed optimist of the group, thinking there's got to be a pony somewhere in one of these piles of manure. Rep. Harriet Hageman - pretty tough so far -  looks like a potential pony to me, and my normally-skeptical wife agrees.

- My homie colleagues and I think Trump gets the Republican nomination for president in 2024. But we fear that the suburban soccer moms and those with a pathological hatred for Trump combine to either re-elect Methuselah, or some other disastrous Democrat. Which confirms this gem from another old  friend:

“It's time (for us) to die.”

- There's agreement among us that Trump would be midway through his second term if, back in his first term, he could have tamed his worst enemy: His mouth.

- Say what you want about RFK Jr., but he would annihilate Hapless Joe in a debate. That's why it will never happen.

- And if you ask us, Bidenomics is just a kinder, gentler term for the time-honored government tradition of (wait for it):

 Spending like drunken sailors.

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Dave Simpson

Political, Wyoming Life Columnist

Dave has written a weekly column about a wide variety of topics for 39 years, winning top columnist awards in Wyoming, Colorado, Illinois and Nebraska.