Martin Kidston

Recent Posts

Public lands at center stage for governors meeting


Gov. Steve Bullock on Monday welcomed governors from across the West to Montana for the annual Western Governors Association meeting, one that will cover everything from cyber security to childhood hunger. U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke is also slated to deliver a keynote address on Tuesday. Several outdoors groups have scheduled a simultaneous rally to encourage Zinke to protect public lands and national monuments. (more…) Continue Reading →

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UM scientist issues warning after retreat from climate accord

Steve R

One week after President Donald Trump shunned the world’s leading scientists and pulled the United States from the global pact on climate change, more than 1,200 U.S. business leaders, governors, mayors and college presidents signed an open letter to the world. Despite the president’s decision, they wrote, America would continue to support climate action in hopes of meeting the goals of the Paris Accord, even “in the absence of leadership from Washington.” (more…) Continue Reading →

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Billings taxi owners, others fight Lyft application


In a tense and often clumsy hearing in Helena on Monday, a handful of taxi companies tried to convince the Montana Public Service Commission to deny an operating permit for a national rideshare company looking to expand to the state. Members of the commission took nearly four hours of testimony from multiple parties regarding a request by Lyft Inc. to begin operating in Montana. The commission approved a similar application by Uber in late 2015, giving a reluctant nod to changing technology and the demands of the traveling public. (more…) Continue Reading →

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At town hall, Tester hears of broken VA health system


When combat veteran Christine Bailey first discovered the lump in her breast, her first call was like that of any veteran. She dialed up to the VA Montana Health Care System, only to learn that it didn’t offer breast care for women. Bailey’s problems compounded when, under the CHOICE program, which allows veterans to seek care outside the VA, she was met with a tangle of red tape and lengthy delays in trying to get authorization to pursue mammograms and biopsies. (more…) Continue Reading →

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VA Montana director says ‘help is coming’


The VA Montana Health Care System is looking at both short- and long-term solutions to address a number of challenges within the state, including a lack of providers, problems with tele-health screenings and the absence of physician training, its new director said Wednesday. Kathy Berger, director of VA Montana, answered questions from area veterans and Sen. Jon Tester during a town hall meeting at the Partnership Health Center in Missoula to gather feedback on problems within the VA. (See related story.) (more…) Continue Reading →

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Opinion: Should newspapers even make endorsements?

Martin Kidston

When I was a kid growing up, my stepfather often warned that I not let my “canary mouth override my alligator ass.” In other words, sometimes it’s a good idea to keep your opinions quiet and avoid biting off more than you can chew. I rarely listened, but it might have been good advice for the Missoulian, which is picking up the pieces today from its endorsement of congressional candidate Greg Gianforte on Sunday. The fallout over that endorsement caused a rapid backlash on social media and the cancellation of numerous subscriptions. (more…) Continue Reading →

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The Merc is gone, but its beautiful wood lives on


As crews toiled away within the confines of the Missoula Mercantile this winter, those at Home ReSource puzzled over the monumental task of moving, sorting and stacking an estimated 200,000 board feet of lumber. There were nails to pull, prices to set and, above all, a method was needed to make it available to the general public. Mission accomplished. (more…) Continue Reading →

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