Week in review: February 10

What we’re reading this week.


These days, there’s too much going on for our tiny newsroom in Paonia, Colorado, to cover. But we don’t want readers to miss the stories that shape our Western economies, landscape and lives. So, every Friday, we share the stories we’re reading and paying attention to, from around the region and the country: the Western week in review. —Kate Schimel, Deputy Editor-Digital

Bundy standoff trial begins

On Monday, the first of three trials over the 2014 Bundy Ranch standoff began. The standoff stoked tensions over federal land management in the West and foreshadowed the current battles over federal control that are playing out on a national stage. Associate Editor Tay Wiles was on the ground, covering the trial.

In case you missed it, here are her recommendations on what to read to make sense of the trial. You can read all of our coverage on the Bundy standoff and its aftereffects here.

A new populist movement

Managing Editor Brian Calvert recommends reading “Is the Anti-Trump ‘Resistance’ the New Tea Party?” from The Atlantic. He says: “In this look back at the rise of the Tea Party, Molly Ball, one of the finest political reporters we have, draws parallels with the left’s new ‘resistance.’ This piece is a sober look at the pitfalls this new movement faces, outlines the kind of populism that makes it tick, and ends up being a well-reported look at how influential the Tea Party was in creating a wave that politicians could not control, and yet were forced to ride.”

California rains strain dams

A hole opened up on a spillway of the Oroville Dam, the tallest in the country, and is growing as water flows over it. State water managers say the dam is sound but the pictures are impressive.

Meanwhile in Elko, Nevada, a broken dam flooded homes and farmland and stopped trains.

Scientists for president?

Contributing editor Ruxandra Guidi is reading about scientists who are feeling motivated to run for office in the age of Trump. One, in California, has a great slogan: “Liberty, Equality, Reality,” a play on France’s national motto. Another, in Maine, had this to say: “I came into this career wanting to do science that’s in the public good. And maybe now that means something different than it did before.” More: “In Age of Trump, Scientists Show Signs of a Political Pulse,” New York Times.

Rep. Chaffetz in hot water again

“Rep. Jason Chaffetz tried to respond to questions, but many of his answers went unheard. The din of the hostile and harassing audience that filled the 1,000 seats of a high school auditorium Thursday night drowned him out.

“Explain yourself,” they roared over him.

When the congressman did get a chance to speak, the crowd often didn't like what he had to say. And he knew it.” Salt Lake Tribune

Western appeals court backs travel ban critics

On Feb. 9, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against President Donald Trump’s travel ban. “The government has pointed to no evidence that any alien from any of the countries named in the order has perpetrated a terrorist attack in the United States,” the judges wrote. “Rather than present evidence to explain the need for the Executive Order, the government has taken the position that we must not review its decision at all.”  Trump tweeted his reaction to the ruling: “SEE YOU IN COURT, THE SECURITY OF OUR NATION IS AT STAKE!” More from PBS Newshour:

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