Thursday, September 11, 2008

We all remember where we were 7 years ago. Where will we be in 2015? Life is short, let's get started! How may I help you?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Colorado History Museum is doing a living history project, here’s a video they have produced of my friend Walt Young:

Here’s a video I made of Walt a few months ago:

Yes, Walt, life is sweet. Thanks for making it just a bit sweeter for so many of us.

If you'd like to join me and Walt at our Thursday evening Socrates Cafe, there's more information at

Would you do me a favor? Please forward a link to this along to people on your email list you think would be interested. They will thank you, and so will I if you'll let me know what you've done.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

"All happy families are alike; each unhappy family is unhappy in its own way." To have a happy family “…one should live so as to have the best for oneself and one's family." Leo Tolstoy, who was born on this date in 1828.

From today’s Greeley Tribune:

We are living in a historic time. We have the opportunity and the necessity to envision a new way of living that will fulfill the promise of the founding brothers of our nation. What will matter is not that they were Christian, but that they had a vision of governance that eschewed wealth and power of the few for the power and dignity of "We the People."

We are at a crossroads in our nation wherein the promise of our ideals is in jeopardy and the vision of this country is nearly bankrupt. We need a debate on what we want for the future of our children and grandchildren. We must get beyond our propensity to react to events and work to envision the life we want. The process of creating this nation is not nor ever was finished with the writing and ratification of the Constitution. We must do our part in our time to ensure the continuation of the ideals we hold to be self-evident, "that all people are created equal and entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."

Our visioning process needs to include at least three levels. Our families are the rock on which our society stands. They cannot stand alone, however. Human society has always been about helping each other survive, so we formed communities, cities and nations. In our time, we are facing global problems that cannot be solved by a single nation. We are in this together, and our vision of community must broaden to include every living thing on this planet -- human, animal and plant. This is the vision that our Native American brothers and sisters have always held sacred.

What vision do you want to see for your community, your world? We have evidence every day in our lives of the vision of greed and the idolization of wealth. We have become a nation of rapacious consumers, addicted to getting more and more stuff. We are complacent about corporate greed that puts money profits over people's lives. Didn't it disturb you to read in this paper that people are dying in the California fruit and vegetable fields for lack of shade and water because the owners are oblivious to the suffering of their laborers? That is the obscenity of our current way of life. Where are the "Christian" values you so like to talk about?

What vision do you see for your nation? Is it the vision that the lust for power wins every time, that lies and dirty tricks are OK as long as the "right" party is doing it? Is it the vision that as long as I have my house, car, toys, "I've got mine," and you can go to hell?

There is another way to be and relate to our world, and ultimately it is old-fashioned and very American. This is the vision of purpose, national purpose. We are in this together. We are the people. We are each other's neighbors. We are each other's keepers. When there is a vision for a society that is based on compassion, our resources and our will to accomplish justice for all is possible.

What will it take to get there? Rigorous honesty, as they say in Alcoholics Anonymous. We need to become a nation that faces our dishonesty and hypocrisy, our lies and our addictions to wealth and power. We are not exceptional because we have a powerful military. It is our American ideas that are powerful. To truly value democracy, we must return to the Founders' ideas that wealth and power are anathema to good governance. Take this opportunity at this historic moment and think about what you really want for this country and for this beautiful planet we all call home.

Claire Barta teaches violin and viola lessons, plays in the Greeley Philharmonic, and is a photographer. She is also a political junkie and 12-year Greeley resident.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Happy Grandparent’s Day!

I’m the grandfather of 4 now, up from just 1 this time last year! My oldest daughter Regan and Tim here in Denver just adopted their 2nd this time a beautiful girl, and daughter Brooke and Ned in Houston had twin boys in March.

I never knew my grandfathers, they both died before I was born. But my pop’s mother, my Mamaw, and my mom’s mother, my MyrnaMom and my step-grandfather Daddy Mack, all in Amarillo, Texas, were big influences on my life for which I’m very grateful.

Where 2 or 3 are gathered…

The Denver Post today has an editorial about the election that is only 8 weeks away.

I posted this comment:

Would you like to join the live debate?

Then I hope you'll join us this afternoon or any Sunday afternoon for Denver Speakers Corner. Take a turn on the soapbox or just listen in as others share their passion about issues, causes, concerns, and candidates.

Denver Speakers Corner, each Sunday, 4 p.m., Denver Civic Center, under the pavilion on Colfax, across Colfax from the Denver Newspaper Agency. More info and optional RSVP at


Join us for the Denver IDEA Café, each Friday, 2 to 3:30 pm at Panera Bread, 13th & Grant St. in Denver. Free and open to all. More info at or call (303)861-1447. Speakers next Friday (Sept 12) Ian Kernan and Gretchen Bryant

Since 1994, we invite successful entrepreneurs to share their experience and we brainstorm.

SORRY, NO MULTILEVELS. If the only reason you want to attend IDEA Cafe meetings is to recruit for your multilevel (or other) sales organization, or to find customers, please don't. That really takes away from our mission, to try and help people find their own unique calling. Yes, I know that maybe joining your sales organization is what some people are being called to do, but they are not the kind of people we are trying to help with this group. We are trying to help the person who wants to make their own unique vision a reality, please respect this purpose.

Here are recent comments about the IDEA Café:

Every Friday for the last 10 years, local business consultant John Wren has infused the city with entrepreneurial spirit by hosting Idea Cafe, a conversation group for anyone starting a new career, business, or campaign. 5280 Magazine

“ It is an opportunity for people to get ideas about something they might be stuck on relating to their business and if others can put in constructive criticism you can possibly come to a solution and get un-stuck. ” — Alicia Persich (Jun 16, 2008)

“ If you don't know what your going to do next, do this! ” — brent (May 23, 2008)

“ Other people should join if they have an interest in hearing entrepreneurial stories and in brainstorming - for themselves or other people in the group. I received great brainstorming assistance today! ” — Mike Kraft (May 2, 2008)

“ Motivation to get your business going, lots of ideas for your key problem area you need to address, meeting like minded people going through the same start up or growing pains you are experiencing. ” — Davyd Smith (Apr 19, 2008)


Finally, I’m forming a new, and final, Franklin Circle here in Denver. It will be comprised of people who want to help strengthen the grassroots here in Denver with the free, open forums of Denver Speakers Corner and the IDEA Café. We’ll meet once a month for the mutual support of these two projects, and to help provide peer support for each other in our business and political ventures. If you’d like more information, contact me at or (303)861-1447.

Let’s get started!