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Tuesday notes

Aug 28, 2012 - By Steven R. Peck

Hot time

In Fremont County we had an unusually mild winter, if you'll recall, followed by an unseasonably warm spring, and an almost unbelievably early, hot summer.

Our summer conditions have been more or less normal since the nearly unprecedented heatwaves of May and June, thank goodness, but there is no indication at all that an early cool-down now might be in store.

As of Tuesday morning, most weather forecasts called for sunny, dry, hot weather, with high temperatures in the 90-degree range into Labor Day weekend as August becomes September. Mother Nature is getting her money's worth out of us this year.

Mitt, meet Isaac

One place they're wishing for our kind of weather is Tampa, Fla., where a hurricane in the vicinity already has disrupted the Republican National Convention. The GOP cut its convention schedule from four days to three because of the storm.

It now looks as if Hurricane Isaac will sidestep the Florida Gulf Coast for the most part and reach land closer to New Orleans.

That's both good news and bad news for the Republican conventioneers meeting to nominate Mitt Romney.

The good news is that the convention probably isn't going to suffer a power outage or some other major weather-related interruption. The bad news is that the storm threatens to overshadow the convention in terms of news coverage and public attention.

That's to say nothing of the worry that grips the central Gulf Coast as the hurricane bears down. The catastrophe of Katrina is still fresh in the national mind. Everyone hopes this new storm falls far short of that one seven years ago this week.

A sure thing

Its precise pattern of movement and eventual strength remain to be determined, but there is one effect that Hurricane Isaac seems absolutely certain to deliver -- and not just to the Gulf Coast, but to the entire nation.

No matter where it hits, and no matter how strong it is, you can bet that those who are in charge of the almost incomprehensible process that determines the price of gasoline will, through the use of crystal balls, tea leaves, barometric pressure and hunches, decide that the price of a gallon must rise by 25 cents or so at every gas pump in the United States. Bank on it. You know they will be.

Campaign signs

It's never a happy duty, but if your campaign for local elected office did not advance beyond the primary election stage last week, make the effort soon to get your campaign signs taken down. It makes your campaign look better -- and the signs run less risk of being damaged in case there's another run for office in the future.

Neil Armstrong

The first man to walk on the moon died over the weekend. Neil Armstrong once could claim to be the most famous man in the world. Over time, his reticent, modest nature worked against that notoriety. He was a self-proclaimed "nerd" and proud of it. He viewed flying to the moon, and walking on it, as part of his job, and he was content to leave it at that in the 43 years since he made history.

When one of human history's singular accomplishments is yours, your laurels are pretty durable even if you don't spend much time polishing them. Neil Armstrong proved it.

Voting again

An inevitable and perfectly justified sense of frustration and tension is bound to accompany Fremont County's decision to convene a special election next month to resolve a ballot discrepancy in the Republican primary for Fremont County Commission District 2.

That frustration applies across the board, from the voters, to the candidates, to the county's election officials.

District 2 generated a close race last week, too close for the ballot error to be ignored. There is no perfect answer to the problem, but a run-off by mail is a legitimate response.

Look at it as a second primary. A field of four has been cut to a field of two -- not in exactly the way anyone would have wanted it, but in a way that will prove to be an important procedural chapter in our county's election history.