Colorado's favorite John Denver-loving libertarian is back in politics, two years after her unsuccessful run for the Libertarian Party's presidential nomination left her angry at the process. Christine Smith, a freelance writer who penned A Mountain in the Wind — An Exploration of the Spirituality of John Denver in 2001 and organized a festival honoring the late singer for six years, will challenge Republican Tom Massey in House District 60, which includes Chaffee, Custer, Fremont, Park, Saguache and Pueblo counties.
Smith, who lives near Howard, was one of several Libertarian Party candidates who vied for the top spot on the ballot back in 2008. They all eventually lost to former Republican Bob Barr — whom many regarded as an interloper. "What I saw at the Libertarian Party convention disgusted me," Smith wrote at the time. "I thought Libertarians actually believed in libertarian principles and that would always be their highest priority. I was wrong.... Obviously, the majority of Libertarian delegates cared nothing about libertarian principle when they chose Barr...."
Today, Smith says she's still frustrated by the national party and no longer wastes her "time, money or work" on it. But she continues to find value in the Libertarian Party of Colorado, which still espouses the principles she believes in. And in addition to the issues of taxation, property rights and gun control, the freedom-loving Smith has recently added another passion: medical marijuana. While Massey was the "Chong" to Senator Chris Romer's "Cheech" this past spring, taking the lead in hammering out new rules for pot in Colorado, Smith and other libertarians believe the drug should be legal — and free from all regulations. "Tom Massey intervened in an area that was previously perfectly harmonious in our district and state, turning it into a battle that needn't be between medical marijuana providers and the state government," she says. "I oppose both of the bills Ritter signed, and see no reason for the Colorado state government to ever have become involved in the matter of regulating medical marijuana as they are at this time."
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In fact, Smith says she disagrees with just about everything Massey has done in his six-year legislative career — except, perhaps, for his yes vote in 2007 when the Colorado Legislature approved making John Denver's "Rocky Mountain High" our new state song.
Scene and herd: Red Rocks Amphitheatre has seen some hot acts so far this summer, including the Disco Biscuits and MGMT (even if it poured on the fans, who sloshed their way to Morrison), and the place will go off again when both Widespread Panic and the String Cheese Incident stop by for three days each.
But the show that really had the scalpers going wild was the Film on the Rocks debut showing of The Hangover. Yeah, that's right. A movie. Tickets for the $10 event — which included performances by Kinetix and The Pirate Signal — were going for $35 each on Craigslist ( a whopping 350 percent bump) and $45 in the parking lot.
Will this be the year that Film on the Rocks sells out every show? We'll see. But in the meantime, can anyone hook us up with some seats for The Princess Bride?