Fagg argues for God-inspired Constitution

I have tried without much success to take an interest in the parboiled debate over Judge Russell Fagg’s so-called shadow campaign for the U.S. Senate. But my dutiful slog through Fagg’s defense of his actions in the Oct. 8 Billings Gazette screeched to a halt when I encountered this sentence: “Our constitution, divinely inspired, gives everyone the right to express their opinions.”

MSU grad heads coalition’s fight against Islamic State


BOZEMAN — A Montana State University graduate who now serves as a lieutenant general in the U.S. Army was recently named commander of Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve, an international coalition fighting the Islamic State.

Lt. Gen. Paul E. Funk II, a three-star general who is a 1984 graduate of the College of Letters and Science, commands a coalition of 73 nations and partners. The coalition is tasked with defeating the Islamic State in designated areas of Iraq and Syria and ensuring conditions are favorable for subsequent operations, with a goal of increasing stability in the region. Continue Reading →

Surprise guests a big hit at Magic City Music Awards


In an awards show packed with youthful energy and frenetic performances, the hit of the night at the 17th annual Magic City Music Awards on Sunday might have been Norrine “The Outlaw Queen” Linderman, who’s been performing in the Billings area since the late 1940s.

Linderman, winner of last year’s Freeman Lacy Award, created to recognize musicians with a long history of contributing to the Billings music scene, was just well enough to pick up her award last year, but too ill to sing. Continue Reading →

Prairie Lights: A little ‘fall protection’ for our readers

Two Moon

In this Prairie Lights space, I generally give vent to personal opinions on subjects like politics, culture, religion and other tender subjects.

Today I want to test the limits of the First Amendment by unburdening myself of the opinion that we live in a spectacularly beautiful place, especially during the fleeting few weeks of High Autumn, which I am capitalizing in defiance of Associated Press style regulations to emphasize how glorious it is. Continue Reading →

‘Off-the-shelf wetlands’ firm poised for worldwide growth

Fish fry

SHEPHERD — Since founding Floating Island International 12 years ago, Bruce Kania has achieved a lot of milestones.

More than 7,000 of his man-made islands — he likes to call them “off-the-shelf wetlands” — have been sold around the world. He holds “a couple dozen” patents related to the floating island technology and he has six licensed manufacturers — three in the United States and one each in China, New Zealand the United Kingdom — making his patented BioHaven-brand islands. Continue Reading →

Suit says Fagg broke federal campaign finance laws


The American Democracy Legal Fund has filed a federal complaint against Yellowstone County District Judge Russell Fagg, alleging that he violated federal campaign finance laws by campaigning for the U.S. Senate without filing for the seat.

The complaint, filed with the Federal Election Commission, contends that while Fagg has not yet filed for office or resigned his seat from the bench, he has actively distributed campaign literature and launched a campaign website with a donation platform. Continue Reading →