These days, everybody’s an expert on the Founding Fathers. That’s why it’s a good thing that no matter what you think of Republican 1st District Congressman Rob Bishop’s oft far-out ideas, you always end up back at the history books. If you really want to argue about the power of the feds and states rights, then you need to understand the Bill of Rights, the roots of federalism, the Supremacy Clause, the Doctrine of Interposition … you get the message. Bishop, a former high school American history teacher, has a good grasp of his subject, although you sometimes wonder whose ghostly voices the “constitutionalists” hear. Bishop is now pushing a “Repeal Amendment,” which would give the states—if two-thirds of them agree—the power to repeal federal laws or regulations they don’t like—never mind if they’re constitutional or not.
Solar Incentives to Go Dark?
Recently, one of our Utah legislators wanted to tax hybrid and electric vehicles because owners weren’t paying their way for road construction. Now the state’s solar-rebate program is on the chopping block. Rocky Mountain Power’s Solar Incentive Program is a 2007 pilot program up for renewal at year’s end. The program’s biggest detractor is none other than Rocky Mountain Power, which says it’s gathered from the program all the information it needs about how customers use solar panels and the impacts they have on the grid. But the fledgling solar industry has a long way to go to compete in the energy market, and the Utah Public Service Commission is asking citizens to comment.
50 Years of Shakespeare
The Utah Shakespeare Festival is about to hit 50. Fred Adams was a professor at Southern Utah State College when he opened the first season in 1962. Since then, the festival has grown from 3,276 visitors annually to about 150,000 and has won a Tony, among other recognition. In 2010, the festival hired David Ivers and Brian Vaughn as artistic directors, partly to ramp up interest and fundraising for the company. The economy hasn’t helped, but the festival endures. What’s startling, though, if you look at the venue, is that Cedar City hasn’t exactly embraced the festival by improving its own infrastructure to welcome the world. What do people want before and after a good Shakespeare play? The town remains short on pubs, Internet cafes and after-hours fun.