Panorama: Al-Jazeera on Golden, John McCain on the Conflict in Georgia, and More

August 15 2008, 8:47 AM

Mile-High Headlines for Friday, August 15 Al-Jazeera Will Bring Colorado to the Arab World As ABC, CBS, and NBC embark on a battle of the network anchors during the Democratic National Convention, their journalistic brethren at Al-Jazeera will set up shop in Golden. The global Arab news network will show its viewers what "life is like in a typical U.S. town," according to the Rocky Mountain News. One site of broadcast will be the Buffalo Rose, "an iconic bar in the heart of downtown, where the college-educated townies and tattooed Harley riders blow off steam after work." Of course Al-Jazeera probably doesn't know just how strange Golden's townsfolk can be when they are steamed, but the city's mayor, Jacob Smith, admits both Golden and the Arab world probably have much to learn about each other. But if you're even slightly curious, you won't be able to find the coverage easily--if at all. As Baltimore City Paper reports, "Al Jazeera English Could Change The Way You See The World--If You Ever Get to Watch It." Moreover, the Bush administration doesn't like Al-Jazeera because it has run stories of civilian deaths in the Iraq War and has broadcast statements by Osama bin Laden. Some even seem to confuse the network with Al Qaeda, the terrorist organization that masterminded the 9/11 terrorist attacks and emerged from places such as Greeley, as 5280's Daniel Brogan explains in this story. McCain Talks Russia/Georgia in Aspen Just weeks after John McCain met Tibet's Dalai Lama in Aspen, speaking supportingly of Tibetan autonomy, he traveled to the ski town again yesterday, this time for a chat at the Aspen Institute and some fundraising elsewhere. He told an audience of about 400 people that he talks every day with Mikheil Saakashvili, the president of Georgia, which is now mired in armed conflict with Russia. "This is a brave little country," McCain said, supporting an end to the fighting, according to The Denver Post. McCain also said the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, ought to be shut down and, in response to a question, said he does not support a draft even though troops are stretched by conflicts, including the Iraq War. Cindy Hensley McCain also attended, her right arm in a sling, providing a clear indication that she's willing to pay the price for her husband's fight to get to the White House. Her wrist was "sprained by an overzealous Michigan hand shaker," according to the Aspen Daily News.

Hillary Will Be Honored With Roll Call Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton's name will appear as a nominee during the Democratic National Convention in Denver during a roll-call vote. But all signs indicate that the gesture is not a subversive plot by Clinton to shove aside that bratty Barack Obama and become the presidential nominee, a move that might destroy the Democratic Party in the process. Rather, the decision, announced Thursday in a joint Clinton-Obama statement, is a way to recognize Clinton's historic run as the "first woman to compete in all our nation's primary contests," according to Newsday, which notes Clinton supporters had pressed the issue with a petition. This plan does not appease all of Clinton's supporters, according to the Rocky Mountain News, who seem to be fresh out of drawing boards to go back to given that the convention is about a week away. A few other DNC-related items...The "lucky few" who won tickets to see Obama's presidential acceptance speech at Invesco Field in a lottery shed tears of joy, according to the Rocky Mountain News, provoking a collective "Puh-leeeeze!" from the losers--and Republicans. With the convention about a week away, the Department of Human Services is still in the process of finishing plans to contend with children lost in the craziness of the DNC, including the kids of any arrested protesters, according to ColoradoIndependent.com. And some rumors proved true and false yesterday, as National Public Radio notes: President George W. Bush's former secretary of state, Colin Powell, won't be attending the convention, but the Reverend Jesse Jackson will, although he won't have a speaking role. Rage Against the Machine will play in support of Tent State University protesters Wednesday, August 27 at the Denver Coliseum, about four miles from the convention site, according to PunkNews. The Denver Post says the Rage show is "seen as a possible DNC flash point." And New Orleans musicians, including Tab Benoit, George Porter Jr., Cyril Neville, Irma Thomas, among many, many others, will travel to Denver and then to Minneapolis-St. Paul to ask for bipartisan support in ongoing efforts to rebuild their hurricane-ravaged city and to prevent further loss of Louisiana's coastal wetlands, according to the Friends of New Orleans. Politics Hitting the Charts: The Hispanic Vote Could Count What, friends, could be more wonkalicious than a bunch of charts with pointy lines providing the skinny on the last 50 years of Colorado politics, paying special attention to the upcoming presidential election? The empirical geeks at RealClearPolitics, a self-confessed "horse race blog," love this stuff, and you just gotta love them for it. Here's what they know: For the last five decades, Colorado has become less and less impressed with Republican presidential candidates and more interested in Democrats. This doesn't mean Colorado votes Dem in presidential elections. Just check out this poll yesterday giving John McCain a narrow lead over Barack Obama. What might make the difference in Colorado is the Hispanic vote. In 2004, this growing minority accounted for 19 percent of the state's population. Yet just nine percent of Latinos cast votes in the presidential battle. If somehow, some way they should ever get their act together and vote, the Dems "should enjoy at least a short-term advantage." Nobody's Happy About Roan Plateau Leases The natural-gas industry blamed Governor Bill Ritter, Senator Ken Salazar, and Representative Mark Udall--all Democrats--for putting a "dark cloud of uncertainty" over drilling prospects on Colorado's scenic and wild Roan Plateau, as more than 54,000 acres of natural-gas leases sold for $114 million on Thursday, according to the Rocky Mountain News. That was a record amount in the continental United States but far less than the $2 billion the industry had predicted. The governor has long called that amount a "ploy by the industry to raise unrealistic expectation as a way to build public support for drilling," according to the Rocky, and even the federal government had predicted sales no higher than $300 million. Environmentalists are calling the sale a disaster. As Fort Collins Now notes, a poll by RBI Strategies and Research, conducted in conjunction with the Colorado Environmental Coalition, found 60 percent of Coloradans have "unfavorable or very unfavorable" feelings about the oil-and-gas industry. Lynch: Denver's Loss Four years ago, the New England Patriots pursued the Broncos' nine-time Pro Bowl safety, John Lynch, even though they were doing pretty good in the safety department and had just won a Super Bowl. Now, according to a league source who notes that the New York Jets also showed interest, the Patriots have signed Lynch to a one-year, $1.5-million contract to offset the loss of Tank Williams, who was placed on the team's injured reserve list after suffering a knee injury in the pre-season against Baltimore, according to The Boston Globe. Boulder Cyclist Doing Well Taylor Phinney's time in the 4,000-meter individual pursuit qualifier wasn't what the Boulder prodigy had hoped for. Still, it was good enough to keep him in the competition. "Anything extra would be considered a bonus," according to this story from the Daily Camera. Read "Project Taylor" by Bill Gifford from the July issue of 5280. Phelps' Weekend? Watch Michael Phelps. He won gold medal No. 6 of these Beijing Olympics this morning and is now just one away from Mark Spitz's record seven back in the 1972 Olympics. "If Phelps wins the 100 butterfly here Saturday, he'll tie Spitz. He would pass him with a medley relay win Sunday," according to The Denver Post. Cheapest Gallon of Gas ‘Round Here: $3.68, Western Convenience, 11515 N. Hwy. 83 (via www.gasbuddy.com). Enjoy what you're reading? Starting August 18, Panorama will be available as an e-newsletter. Sign up now, and receive our Mile-High headlines each weekday morning via email. E-mail relevant articles to: [email protected]

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