The Flathead Valley’s Leading Independent Journal of Observation, Analysis, & Opinion. © James R. Conner.


23 October 2012

Flathead Memo thanks Dick Skees for the free publicity —
And, free of charge, sets the record straight on some facts

I wasn’t sure whether Dick Skees (Derek’s father) read Flathead Memo until I opened today’s Daily InterLake and found on page 7 his full-page advertisement denouncing Democratic county commissioner candidate Gil Jordan for not sharing Skees’ political philosophy. There, in Skees’ first bullet point, was the proof of readership:

Democrat Gil Jordan has reportedly marched 50 times in the radical Occupy Kalispell Rallies and the local radical chapter of the Occupy Wall Street Movement, (source: The Flathead Memo website).


As I reported on 9 October, Gil Jordan (right) did participate in 50 of Occupy Kalispell’s 52 consecutive honk-n-waves (links to more reports and images) — his opponent, Republican Cal Scott, participated in one — a remarkable feat of dedication. So, Skees is right when he says Jordan marched 50 times.

But Skees is wrong when he alleges that Occupy Kalispell is “…the local radical chapter of the Occupy Wall Street Movement.” Skees didn’t get that from Flathead Memo. He couldn’t, because there is and was no local chapter of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Occupy Kalispell is wholly local and is not affiliated with any other group or organization.

In fact, referring to Occupy Kalispell as an organization suggests a degree of formality that never existed. Gil Jordan maintained an informal email list of attendees, but for all intents and purposes the people who waved for honks each Saturday for an hour beginning at noon did so not at Jordan’s command but because of the calling of their consciences. Among them were working stiffs, retirees, seniors over 80, engineers, physicians, professionals, students, nurses. Their common bond? A deep conviction that concentrating our nation’s wealth in one percent of its citizens weakens America and ill serves humanity.

Is that radical? Skees thinks so, and he’s certainly entitled to his own opinion. But he’s not entitled to his own facts — and the fact is, I consider neither Occupy Kalispell’s participants nor message radical. The real radicals are the Tea Party types who purchase full page ads to smear good men like Gil Jordan.

I’m delighted to thank Dick Skee’s for providing Flathead Memo with free publicity, and equally happy to straighten him out on the facts. And I’ll be glad to do so again.

More Flathead Memo reports on Occupy Kalispell

19 April 2012. Occupy Kalispell & Tea Party: a peaceful crossing of left and right. Flathead Tea Partiers, the usual suspects with the usual complaints, arrived for their own honk-n-wave just before Occupy’s participants disbanded. Unsuccessful GOP candidate for governor Ken Miller joined the teabaggers. Lots of photographs.

13 April 2012. Occupy Kalispell — half a year of honk-n-waves and still going strong. The penultimate appearance of Gil Jordan’s first sign.

30 January 2012. Guy Fawkes mask sullies Occupy Kalispell’s honk-n-wave. An arrogant sign-waver wearing the mask of a notorious 17th century terrorist joined those with the courage to show their faces. He did not amuse me.

3 December 2011. Putting it on the dog at Occupy Kalispell. A pungent visual on trickle-down economics.

26 November 2011. Occupy Kalispell’s stalwarts hold post-Thanksgiving honk-n-wave. The turkeys stayed home. Kalispell’s advocates for the 99 percent showed up.

24 October 2011. Rain thins, but does not wash away, ranks of Occupy Kalispell. Cal Scott’s one and only appearance — but, what an appearance, what a sign.