What Makes A Patriot?

Posted By Scoop Trooley // July 4, 2017


What Is Patriotism?

Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.   ~ Mark Twain

Well, that just about sums it up, doesn’t it? This blog article is proudly brought to you by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.

God Bless America! 

And What About That Police Chief?

Last month, my blog posted photos of the new Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Planning Director Chas Ariss illegally parked on the corner yellow zone in front of his house. Today, as a special Independence Day treat, I am posting photos of yet more illegally parked vehicles, this time right in front of the Anaconda Chief of Police’s house. My photos were all taken yesterday, July 3, 2017. This blog post might start some fireworks, but so it goes. Here’s the first photo:And In_Front_of_Barkell's-with3dogs -

What do we see here? This is a typical Anaconda scene. In the photo above, we are looking down a very steep hill at the street and sidewalk in front of Anaconda Police Chief Tim Barkell’s house on Locust Street. His house is behind that big tree you see on the right-hand side of the photo. The street dead-ends here at the base of the hill, in the foreground of the photo.  The only way to access this south end of Locust Street with a vehicle is by driving in from the north end of the street, shown in the upper left of the above photo.

I don’t believe any of those angle-parked vehicles on the left side of the above photo are legally parked.  I believe this practice of angle parking across from the Chief of Police’s house on Locust Street just sort of “evolved”, without any actual laws whatsoever. 

There are no lines painted on Locust Street to designate this angle parking, and I cannot find anything in the Deer Lodge County Code of Ordinances that addresses angle parking, either. For angle parking on a city street such as this, I believe a special permit is required, at least that is what the STATE law says. In the absence of any local ordinance dealing with angle parking, the county should defer to the Montana Code.

This scene shown here, with all those cars and trucks sticking out into the street, looks very unsafe in the case of an emergency, such as a house fire on that dead end block. What if two or three fire trucks had to drive up Locust Street there? It would be a logjam. If you look at the actual codes, the law specifies parallel parking only on a street like this.

Chief Barkell’s Dead End.

The following photo was taken from the opposite direction, and shows the dead end of Locust Street from the street view, courtesy of Google Maps. This dead end is actually an abandoned section of West 8th Street, so at one point in history, this was apparently NOT a dead end, and traffic could turn either right or left at this south end of Locust Street.

Many maps still show this section of West 8th Street, but it was obviously blocked off many years ago to traffic. It is still public property, however. Unless, of course, those homeowners at the end of this street have gained a prescriptive easement to use it, and to block the public off of it.  It is not clear as of this writing whether this section of 8th Street was actually legally abandoned by the county. This photo was taken by Google in 2012:

unnamed (2)

It looks like fire trucks would indeed have a hard time accessing this part of Locust Street, not only because of the angle-parked vehicles sticking out into the street, but also because of the dead end. For vehicles, there is only one way in and one way out, since Locust Street abruptly stops at the hill right near Chief Barkell’s house. You have to wonder how a fire truck would even turn around at the end of this street.

Let’s Take A Closer Look At This Scene:

Dogs-illegal-parking - Copy

Photo Taken by Scoop Trooley on July 3, 2017.

I am almost certain the cluster of angle parked vehicles across the street from Barkell’s house is totally illegal, and I KNOW there are two illegally parked vehicles right in front of Police Chief Barkell’s house, as shown here. Both of these vehicles are violating the Anaconda-Deer Lodge County code by “parking on the wrong side of the street” and going the wrong way. These vehicles should be turned around in the other direction to be legally parked, even on a dead end street. I have personally seen Barkell driving around in a yellow jeep, so the jeep in the photos here must belong to him.

That old pick-up truck is in violation of another law as well, because it’s parked closer than 15 feet to a FIRE HYDRANT. So, even if a fire truck could easily drive to the south dead end of Locust Street, this old pick-up truck would cause problems because it is illegally blocking the fire hydrant, right in front of Police Chief Tim Barkell’s house.

That’s a rather new fire hydrant. I believe it was installed there in 2013. And I believe the street curb around that fire hydrant should be painted YELLOW, because folks are NOT supposed to park there, but I am assuming the police chief got an “exemption” from that law, no doubt.

It would be almost impossible for the Fire Department to hook up their FIRE HOSE to this fire hydrant, with that pickup truck parked so close to it. You would think Police Chief Barkell might be more concerned about the safety of his own neighborhood, but he apparently couldn’t care less. This is completely illegal, and very unsafe. We have a law against this for a REASON!

Dogs-illegal-parking - Copy

What The Heck?

There is obviously something else going on in these photos. In addition to the illegally parked vehicles in front of the Chief of Police’s house, this looks suspiciously like an Anaconda pack of dogs, running loose, harassing the U.S. Mail Lady for treats. I bet this unruly dog pack extorts Milk Bones from that poor Mail Lady every single day!

Here they are, five rowdy dogs committing (alleged) canine extortion, right in front of Police Chief Tim Barkell’s house. The photo below is fuzzy. I have zoomed in and darkened it to show the details. This photo shows two dogs on the lawn, three on the sidewalk…. and one brave U.S. Mail Lady:

Dogs-illegal-parking - Copy

WOOF! You Must Give Us Milk Bones…. NOW!!

If you do not give us Milk Bones, we will pee on your fire hydrant! Anaconda DOES have a leash law, but I am assuming this pack of dogs lives nearby, and they belong to Tim Barkell’s various neighbors, and that is how they get away with running loose. The Anaconda dog community has gangs of bullies just like the human community does!

Maybe a couple of these dogs even belong to the Chief himself. Our local Anaconda Police Chief scoffs at actual laws, especially in his own neighborhood. That black dog, the one who looks like a Rottweiler cross, was up in the cemetery running around as I began taking these photos. He was making friends with me, but when he spied the Mail Lady, he took off like a banshee down the hill, and began circling around her, most likely trying to extort Milk Bones from the poor woman.

I have heard tales about Anaconda mail carriers spending huge amounts of their own money to carry Milk Bones in their mail bags every day, handing out treats to dog packs all across Anaconda to avoid getting harassed or bitten. The police are in charge of animal control, so what is WRONG with Police Chief Barkell? This pack of dogs is literally at his own front door! I am sure they are not REALLY vicious dogs, they’re just….. canine extortionists. We all know what they do. They are very hard to say “no” to.

Oh, and I think the Anaconda cops need to start writing some parking tickets up on the 700 block of Locust Street. The State of Montana prosecutes parking tickets as misdemeanor crimes in Anaconda, so I think Barkell and his neighbors should have to stand trial for these heinous parking crimes just like regular citizens do. Fair is fair. Even if it IS the Anaconda Chief of Police. NOBODY is above the law, not even Tim Barkell.


Anaconda: Meth Town, Montana

Posted By Scoop Trooley, June 13, 2017

Photos From Today In Anaconda, Montana:

It looks like a local citizen is just about fed up with the corruption and the drug traffic in town. I saw these signs in a residential neighborhood not far from the courthouse and the police station. Looks like this homeowner has a big issue with the new Anaconda-Deer Lodge County CEO Bill Everett. From what I hear, it appears Mr. Everett doesn’t have much respect for his own county’s zoning laws, or for state landlord-tenant laws, either. And building codes? Anaconda-Deer Lodge County SCOFFS at building codes!

That’s why we end up with substandard housing and scenes like this: 



Howdy Tourists! Welcome to Anaconda…. historically corrupt!


The Poop On The New Planning Director, And Then Some



Hi Folks! I’m Back. And Totally Disgusted!

It’s me, Poopsie… back from a blogging break and doing a guest post here on the Views and News blog. As many of you know, I started writing the The Anaconda Double Standard out of sheer frustration with the massive government corruption in this neck of the woods. I won’t go into detail again here, but for those of you who are not familiar with my saga so far, you can get a good idea about the situation by reading just two articles from my blog:

A Sad And Shameful Story: Part 1  

A Sad And Shameful Story: Part 2

To make a long story short, the Anaconda-Deer Lodge County government rarely follows its own laws, or even the United States Constitution for that matter.  The police, the county attorney, the judges and the CEO just don’t like being bothered with LAWS. We have way too much crime in Anaconda, for such a small town.  The murder rate here is totally unacceptable as well. Another bloody domestic violence murder has happened just in the few months since I wrote my final blog post on The Anaconda Double Standard.

My once-nice neighborhood is getting more and more run-down, crime infested, and dangerous. Unfortunately, the only decent government department I have encountered here in Anaconda is the Fire Department, but they only have limited jurisdiction. They are not the police and they answer to the dubious county CEO Bill Everett. Our firemen can’t arrest drug dealers, but whenever a fire breaks out, these guys are the best. If not for them, the whole town would have blown up in a giant gas explosion by now. 

The Fire Department Can’t Do It All.

So, even with help from the Fire Department, the sad and shameful saga of my declining neighborhood is not going to end any time soon, not even with the election of a brand-new County Chief Executive Officer. We all remember the local election of 2016. It was a contentious battle for CEO, between the corrupt Connie Ternes-Daniels and the political newcomer Bill Everett, who swore he was real big on “government transparency”.

Of course we know that Bill Everett won the election, but things haven’t changed much in my dangerous, crime-ridden neighborhood, and there is no relief in sight. For me, things have actually gotten worse. And the county is still covering up and hiding public information. I have discovered that CEO Bill Everett has no intention of dealing with the illegal and unsafe zoning mess right next door to my home on 8th Street. This particularly upsets me because I voted for the man.  

So much for “eliminating blight”. We have more blight than ever, two blocks away from Everett’s office at the historic courthouse. CEO Everett drives by my house frequently no doubt, as do many county officials. And just like the corrupt Connie Ternes-Daniels before him, Everett just ignores the blatant zoning violations. Go figure.

Is CEO Bill Everett A Pussy?

I know Everett was quite interested in my blog during his campaign. Bill Everett wanted to know how many people were reading The Anaconda Double Standard. It would not surprise me if the blog may have helped him get elected. Who knows.  At any rate, I hope it helped Connie get UN-elected. To date, there have been 11,974 unique visitors to The Anaconda Double Standard, and over 33,450 views. That’s more people than every man, woman and child in Anaconda-Deer Lodge County. The Anaconda Double Standard adds new readers daily, as well.

And while my blog has never “gone viral”, I don’t want it to. It’s a local blog, and it has a lot of inside jokes that nobody else in the world but Anaconda locals would understand. I posted plenty of damning information on that blog. I posted PROOF that county employees were messing with the public records and lying about it. NOBODY did anything about my complaints… I truly believed Bill Everett would address my issues. I was wrong. He has sided with the bullies.

CEO Everett is far more interested in playing around with the county’s landscaping than dealing with actual, URGENT public safety issues that could result in explosions and fires in a residential neighborhood! In the past year, we have had three more home foreclosures in my neighborhood, resulting in empty houses and more blight. Gee. I wonder WHY? Bill Everett needs to wake up and smell the coffee. He talks a good line of bullshit, but so far I am not impressed. 

As of today,  to my knowledge, NOTHING has been done to hold these unethical, law-breaking county employees responsible for what they have done.  NOTHING has been done to hold accountable the folks responsible for the unsafe zoning violations next to my private home. By law, these serious zoning violations should have been abated, and those responsible for the mess charged with crimes, yet NOTHING has been done. I have been complaining for YEARS, but things just keep getting worse, not better.

If CEO Everett reads my blog, then I believe he has full knowledge that certain county employees have committed felonies and other crimes, yet he chooses to look the other way and ignore it. Why would a newly-elected official cover up for his crime-committing employees? Somebody needs to ask Bill Everett that question. By all appearances, Everett has become good buddies with the corrupt Chief of Police AND the totally corrupt, incompetent County Attorney. Everett sucked right up to the most corrupt people in the county the minute he was sworn in.

Heather Edwards Should Be Charged With Felonies.

Heather Edwards is CEO Everett’s (inherited) executive assistant. Heather Edwards has worked at the courthouse for close to 20 years at this point, holding several jobs including the Clerk of the Commission. She knows her way around the courthouse, and the county laws and procedures, better than almost any other county employee. I truly believe this Edwards woman needs to be charged with SEVERAL counts of felony tampering with public information.

I personally know her to be a nasty, two-faced liar. For well over a year,  Ms. Edwards withheld public information from me about the property right next to my private home, and she flat-out lied in more than one email. I believe a few of Ms. Edwards’ alleged partners in crime should be charged with felony tampering as well. After all, they lied and obfuscated about the mess next door to my home for several years, and the lies continue to this day.

I think CEO Everett covers up for Ms. Edwards just because she’s a FEMALE… she’s cute and she probably bats her eyelashes at him. No doubt. Heather Edwards should be fired and sent to prison for a few years, in my opinion. Keeping her around makes Bill Everett look particularly shady.

Paul Puccinelli Should Be Charged With Felonies Too!

Here’s a dubious county employee who apparently was given his cushy government job simply because of his family name. It wouldn’t surprise me if most folks in Anaconda agree with me. Paul Puccinelli, the County Water Department supervisor, caused me a massive amount of pain and woe when he (allegedly) lied through his teeth about a county water line next door to my home.  I had to spend two days in jail because of this man’s (alleged) lies and non-existent ethics, and I refuse to let that slide. This man is simply NOT NICE. The county would be a lot better off if Paul Puccinelli didn’t work there.

I don’t believe you can trust a single thing this Puccinelli character says, and I vehemently believe that his water department goons FAKED a residential water service turn-on last summer. No doubt in my mind.  I would bet that CEO Bill Everett is much too chicken to step on any Puccinelli toes, so this guy Paul Puccinelli will never be held accountable for the shady things he has done during his tenure as a county employee. Funny how Everett seems to fit right in with these shady people he now supervises. If Everett is really so big on “transparency” he would be able to see right through Paul Puccinelli’s and Heather Edwards’ lies! 

The ADLC Planning Department Pretty Much Sucks.

I believe the Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Planning Department is one of the most messed-up, dysfunctional piles of corruption in Montana. Deer Lodge County has had a total of three County Planning Directors in less than a year. Before those three county planning directors came along, the planning director was none other than the corrupt former CEO, Connie Ternes-Daniels, so it’s no wonder the planning department is such a mess.

Doug Clark was the planning director from 2013 to 2016. I posted several of Doug Clark’s lying emails on my blog in the past. Doug Clark has (allegedly) committed felony tampering as well. Lots and lots of felony tampering. Nobody knows why Doug Clark quit his job as planning director in June of 2016, but his exit looks pretty fishy.

Clark “quit” a really good government job to open up an “upholstery shop” in the basement of ADLC Commissioner Terry Vermiere’s graphics shop on Park Avenue here in Anaconda. But Doug Clark’s business doesn’t even look like a legitimate business to me. Nope. Doug Clark looks like he got stuck in the dungeon for some reason. If he has opened up a new business, then why is there no SIGN on the building to indicate his business is there? I have never seen any advertisements for this business, other than on Facebook. Driving by on the street, you wouldn’t even know an upholstery shop exists at that location. It doesn’t look like Doug Clark gets much business at all and you have to wonder what is going on between Clark and Commissioner Vermiere.

What Did Bill Everett Do To Steve Hess, Anyway?

After Doug Clark left the position in June of 2016, it took Connie Ternes-Daniels a few months to hire another planning director. She finally hired Steve Hess last fall, but he didn’t last too long after CEO Everett was sworn in. Nobody really knows what happened to Steve Hess, either. He actually seemed like a knowledgeable guy, but I think Everett fired him. Bill Everett called a secret “executive session” during a PUBLIC commission meeting one night, and the public was not allowed to know why Everett was suddenly advertising for a new planning director. So much for transparency! Holding executive sessions during public meetings is NOT transparent at all. Everett talks out both sides of his mouth, which is really no surprise.

And Then Along Comes Chas Ariss.

Chas Ariss is the new guy that CEO Bill Everett hired after the sneaky executive session. Much to my dismay, I recently discovered that this new planning director lives in my neighborhood on the corner of 7th and Cedar Street. This is the guy who almost made me have a heart attack by placing campaign signs in his yard for “BEN KRAKOWKA”, the evil Deer Lodge County Attorney. Yep… before I even knew Chas Ariss’s name, I already thought he was nuts because he willingly endorsed one of the most corrupt men in Anaconda. Ariss’s endorsement of County Attorney Krakowka did not win Chas any “Poopsie Points”, that’s for sure! And neither did this:


So, what is going on here? Well, I took the photo above as I was stopped on Cedar Street and 7th, at the stop sign. I was going to turn left when I saw this trailer and ATV blocking my view of the oncoming traffic on 7th Street. These illegally parked vehicles belong to Chas Ariss, the new planning director. Apparently when Bill Everett hired this Ariss character, Ariss was allotted his own designated parking spot right on the corner yellow zone. When you are a high and mighty county department head, you get to do stuff like this. Notice how Mr. Ariss has his trailer and ATV parked perfectly ON the yellow zone as if it’s his own private parking spot:



Ariss is not only blocking the view of the oncoming traffic on 7th Street, he is blocking the sidewalk on Cedar Street, too. What if a little kid comes along on his bike and tries to cross Cedar Street and smashes into Chas Ariss’s “Man Toy”? What if somebody is pushing a stroller with a small baby in it and tries to cross Cedar Street? What if somebody in a wheel chair tries to cross Cedar Street right there? The sidewalk and crossing are totally blocked on Cedar Street. This is just plain RUDE !

And if a small child was at the crosswalk pictured below, trying to cross 7th Street, traffic turning around that corner would not be able see anybody. Apparently, Planning Director Ariss doesn’t much care about kids or public safety. Or following the law, either! This scene is ONE BLOCK away from Lincoln School. Not cool, Chas Ariss. NOT COOL!!


Make sure to get a good look at the dandelion farm in Ariss’s yard, too. I think he has the tallest dandelions in the whole neighborhood. Well, after seeing this parking job and the tall dandelions, it became crystal clear! It is no wonder that NOBODY from the county will do anything about the illegal zoning mess next to my home. If Mr. Ariss thinks this bullshit parking job is okay, then he must think violating ANY law is perfectly okay… especially if your name is Chas Ariss. And he obviously couldn’t care less about zoning violations. He is apparently far above the law, just like his boss CEO Everett, and many of Everett’s courthouse cronies.

Uh Oh… Here Comes Da Judge, Larry Pahut! BUSTED!


Well lookie here! What is this? Why, it’s none other than Judge Larry Pahut in his infamous red truck, appearing at just the right place and just the right time to bust the county planning director and send him to jail for parking crimes! I promise you: If I, Poopsie Leroux, so much as DARED to park even one vehicle on a yellow zone, I could be sent to jail for 30 days and have to pay a major fine. So, when I spied Judge Pahut here, I thought he might do something about Planning Director Ariss and the illegal, unsafe yellow zone parking.

Nope, I was wrong. Pahut drove right on by. He lives on the other side of Chas Ariss’s block. They are probably good buddies. However, I would like to commend Judge Pahut for actually stopping at that stop sign. Most judges think they don’t have to stop at stop signs, so I was very proud of Larry for at least STOPPING properly! Good job, Judge Pahut! Thank you!


Chas Ariss Endorsed THIS GUY, Ben Krakowka:


That’s County Attorney Krakowka in the orange vest, sitting in his own ATV with a couple of his home boys in the foreground. What does Krakowka have in his right hand, hidden behind his back from the camera? I can just picture Krakowka and his buddy Chas Ariss out riding around illegally on Forest Service trails in their ATV’s.  Not hard to imagine. CEO Everett should be ashamed of himself for hiring Mr. Ariss. It doesn’t appear that Ariss has any interest in ethics or public safety or ZONING LAWS whatsoever. Bill Everett should be ashamed of the illegal zoning mess next to my home on 8th Street, as well. 

And What About That Playground Sand?

Now that I have seen firsthand how CEO Everett and his new planning director do business, I am very suspicious of anything CEO Everett does. Most locals know that the county has been testing soil and sand at Benny Goodman Park for arsenic and lead. The testing did indeed find contamination, and found the highest levels of contamination to be in the playground sand.

Obviously, sand is not a naturally occurring substance in Benny Goodman Park. The playground sand turned out to be more contaminated than the surrounding dirt, so it’s obvious the sand was hauled IN to the park from a more contaminated site than the park itself. While I do believe it’s a good thing the contaminated sand was replaced, the citizens have NO GUARANTEE that the NEW sand is not contaminated as well. I doubt Ariss would really, truly care about something like contaminated playground sand. This new planning director doesn’t have much respect for children in his own neighborhood.

Where did the new, supposedly clean playground sand come from, and can we actually believe what CEO Everett and Planning Director Ariss say? Another one of Everett’s first big projects after taking office was to remove the notorious Super Slide and the huge hill of dirt the slide was built on. Did anybody think to test the dirt mound from the Super Slide for contamination? It’s quite likely that pile of dirt was contaminated as well. Since the county has now re-used that big dirt pile elsewhere, I think the citizens deserve to know if that dirt is contaminated. I am also wondering if our WATER is actually clean enough to drink….

Citizens, BEWARE!!!




A Big THANK YOU To The Anaconda Fire Department!

Posted by Scoop Trooley // May 25, 2017 // First Responder’s Day

Anaconda’s Finest: Our Fire Department

Today is First Responder’s Day, so I want to say THANK YOU to our amazing Anaconda Fire Department and the men and women who keep our town safe. These folks are the most professional, compassionate public servants around, and they deserve all the support they can get. In spite of the many problems we have in Deer Lodge County, the Fire Department is something we can ALL be truly proud of. These folks are awesome!

Anaconda Firefighters

Always On Duty. Always Keeping Us Safe.

Club Moderne Fire Anaconda Justin Bizjak _OP_2_CP__1475600153129_4176839_ver1.0_640_360



Thank You For Your Compassion AND Your Bravery!

download The Best In The West: ADLC Fire Chief Tocher

Krakowka vs. Letica: Letica Is “The Good Guy” !!

May 3, 2017 // World Press Freedom Day // Posted By Scoop Trooley

In Search Of Freedom, He Fled Communist Yugoslavia

Mr. Ilija Letica is the owner of a large amount of land here in Deer Lodge County. I am sure many of my readers are familiar with the Modesty Creek Road dispute the county has initiated against Mr. Letica. In my humble observations, it seems as if the county and many of its citizens have started a territorial war with Mr. Letica, and Letica is simply standing his ground, as is his right. For those of you not familiar with the Modesty Creek Road issue, please do a GOOGLE search of that subject and educate yourselves.

For everyone else, read on! Mr. Letica, in my opinion, is being unfairly labeled as a villain. The county has dragged him into these court proceedings by cutting a lock off a gate to his property, and I cannot blame the man for standing his ground and fighting for his constitutional rights. If ever there was a man who exemplifies the very values and work ethic that built America in the first place, that man is Ilija Letica. I fear Deer Lodge County has shot itself in the foot by picking a fight with Mr. Letica. Please read this excerpt from an article in the Valdosta Daily Times. The Letica Corporation has a manufacturing plant in Valdosta, Georgia:

VALDOSTA, GA — The story of Letica Corporation starts in Yugoslavia where Letica’s founder, Ilija Letica, was living when he decided to leave the country by foot at the age of 17.

“My dad basically has a Horatio Alger story,” said Mara Letica, executive vice president for Letica. “He was very poor under the communist regime and always had dreams of the United States as being a land of liberty and opportunity.”

Ilija ended up in Germany, studying metallurgy.

He met his wife, Gudrun, and immigrated to Canada in 1955, then to the United States in 1959.

Ilija worked as a tool-and-die maker, running his business focusing on tool and die before starting up Letica Corporation in 1967 to make five-gallon plastic industrial shipping containers, the kind used to transport everything from paint and joint compounds to chemicals and food products.

The first major account for the company came from pickles, as Ilija went around to Michigan pickle producers, convincing some of them to switch over from their metal containers to a bright green plastic pickle container.

“The pickle farmers loved it,” said Mara. “It took off and replaced the metal containers that had been popular. … There was a point where my dad basically almost made us have pickles with (every) dinner.”

After getting a boost from the pickle industry, Letica Corporation grew throughout the next five decades, opening facilities across the United States.

“I remember my dad taking me in his car to deliver things to customers,” said Mara. “I was able to watch him. It was a way of us spending time together. It was 100 percent dedication to realizing his dream of owning his own business and making it work.”

Why Would He Buy Land In Deer Lodge County?

So, after Mr. Letica became a very rich and successful man, he came out to Montana to buy land and then local people began to begrudge his property and his wealth. WHY on earth would he pick a place like Deer Lodge County when he has enough money to buy land anywhere in Montana? Maybe at one point Mr. Letica considered building a manufacturing plant in Anaconda. We may never know for sure. The only thing I know for sure is that Deer Lodge County would not even exist today, if not for the vision of another well-known rags-to-riches immigrant named Marcus Daly, the founder of Anaconda.

As a Copper King, Marcus Daly helped to electrify America. In fact, Butte and Anaconda were two of the first cities in America to have electricity. Nowadays, we would have a hard time living without electricity. We would also have a hard time living without five-gallon plastic buckets! Think about it! We take five-gallon plastic buckets for granted nowadays. Those buckets hold everything from pickles to cake frosting to paint. And we can thank Mr. Ilija Letica for those buckets; indeed he was the pioneer of five-gallon plastic buckets. Let’s remember that!

pickle_barrel Letica’s Pioneering Pickle Bucket

Quit Trashing Mr. Letica On “Uniquely Anaconda” !

I am truly embarrassed for those of you who trash others on Facebook, just for sport. For the past year I have been able to view this Uniquely Anaconda site without having to sign in to Facebook. I refuse to get a Facebook account, but anybody with an internet connection can see what folks talk about on Uniquely Anaconda. Below, I have copied and pasted what Mr. Ken Schmidt, the incredibly boorish and woefully clueless administrator of Uniquely Anaconda, has to say about Mr. Ilija Letica and the Modesty Creek Road access issue.

Mr. Schmidt’s statements are so off-base. untrue, mean and ignorant I would say it’s actually SLANDER against Mr. Letica:

That Letica feller is at it again. Back in 2015, he convinced the Montana Supreme Court to allow him to cut off all access to public lands by declaring a public road private since we didn’t complain earlier when he stole it from the public. Now he wants money from the county to pay him for damage done to his personal road. First off, he is the main problem, secondly, the Supreme Court is to blame for allowing this guy to deny us access to our lands, and thirdly, we’ve given up the fight and will never visit that high country again. One would think there would be a legal way to condemn certain sections of private lands to re-establish an access road, but apparently not.

My personal opinion of Letica is tempered to some extent: I don’t know his parents, so can’t call him an S.O.B. or a bastard, have no idea about other proclivities that may suggest aberrant sexual behavior. Without proper ordination in any church, I can’t damn him. What I can say is that he’s not a person we want in our community, that he’s bought our rights to land that we once thought was ours.

~Ken Schmidt, Administrator of the ‘Uniquely Anaconda’ Facebook group

These comments are mean, nasty and way out of bounds, folks. The Supreme Court was simply following the Montana Code when they ruled in favor of Mr. Letica’s obviously legal prescriptive easement. In simple terms, we are dealing with time-honored LEGAL “squatter’s rights” here. The county government itself didn’t do squat about that locked gate on the Modesty Creek Road for thirty years, so they really can’t complain all these years later. Possession is nine-tenths of the law, as they say. The statute of limitations for contesting adverse possession of land in Montana is only five years; the county government waited another 25 years before they illegally cut the lock off that gate on the Modesty Creek Road.

Ken Schmidt, Please SHUT UP !!!

Mr. Schmidt wrongly assumes it was Mr. Letica himself who locked the gate to the Modesty Creek Road in 1980. In reality, the road was already closed to the public long before Mr. Letica bought that property in 1989. Mr. Letica had no idea that people would claim, some twenty-odd years after he purchased his land, that his road was all of a sudden a county road again and the county wanted it back. If he had thought there was a cloud of that sort on the title to that property, I doubt he would have purchased the property in the first place. Letica is not a stupid man.

By the time Mr. Letica purchased the property, he absolutely had a legal right to keep his gate LOCKED and to keep the litterbugs, vandals and unethical “sportsmen” like County Attorney Krakowka OFF of his private property.  And indeed, NO ONE at the county questioned the fact that the road across Letica’s private property was off-limits to the public until 2012, when the Deer Lodge County government barged in at the request of a neighboring land owner.

Now, I realize that most hunters and sportsmen are ethical and follow the law, but it only takes a few bad apples to make everyone smell rotten. Speaking of which… in an unrelated incident, an Anaconda citizen complained to the county about an in-town property dispute with a neighbor. The county did nothing about those complaints except to retaliate, and the citizen was harassed relentlessly by local thugs, including County Attorney Krakowka himself. Krakowka is the one who most likely placed a bloody severed deer leg behind the rear bumper of this citizen’s truck in retaliation for a LEGITIMATE complaint the citizen made.

Bad Sportsmen NOT Welcome, Especially Krakowka!

The scene pictured in the photos below is within sight of the Deer Lodge County courthouse. Can you imagine what so-called “sportsmen” like Ben Krakowka would do out in the boonies to retaliate against somebody who had dared complain about a property dispute? The incident pictured below happened during hunting season, a couple of blocks away from County Attorney Krakowka’s office on a well-traveled city street in a residential area, within sight of the Anaconda Police Station, and Krakowka later admitted he had been standing in the same spot on the same morning the deer leg appeared! This is the type of tactic County Attorney Krakowka (allegedly) uses to harass and intimidate complaining citizens into submission.

County Attorney Krakowka (allegedly and almost certainly) DID THIS TO A CITIZEN:



Why do you suppose the cops and County Attorney Krakowka ignored this deer leg crime, even as violent crime and vandalism escalated within the city limits? It is absolutely WRONG to accuse Mr. Letica of stealing from the public when in fact he was simply exercising his rights as a landowner. I can imagine scenes WAY worse than this happening on Mr. Letica’s rural property if that road was left open for the public to use, and I applaud Mr. Letica for taking this case to court and not backing down. The Montana Supreme Court agreed with Mr. Letica because Mr. Letica was RIGHT. Ken Schmidt apparently thinks Deer Lodge County is above the law, as does County Attorney Krakowka.

Ken Schmidt, Do You Know What A “TRAIL” Is?

Definition of:  trail / trāl 1.) a beaten path through rough country such as a forest or moor.

There are other ways to access the National Forest land in question. There is a TRAIL for people to use that enters the forest near Racetrack. You can hike, ride a mountain bike, ride a motorized dirt bike or ATV (as long it’s no wider than 50 inches), OR you can always ride a horse or a sure-footed mule. The real issue that people are whining about is that vehicles wider than 50 inches do not have access to the road on Mr. Letica’s private property, and that is NOT the same as blocking the public out of all private lands forever.
Let’s get real, shall we?..………………..
It looks like certain people in town have been spreading lies and misconceptions about this road access issue.  Ken Schmidt has no idea what he is talking about when he says that Mr. Letica has “cut off all access to public lands…. and (we) will never visit that high country again“. That’s a rather bold accusation, especially when it’s such an obvious falsehood.  A dramatic falsehood at that. Sounds like Mr. Schmidt is trying to incite crime with his false Facebook post. Ignorant comments such as this are what spawn other ignorant comments, and that in turn can cause vandalism and violence against property owners.

Ignorant Locals Trashing Mr. Letica On Facebook:

Here are some other nasty comments from Uniquely Anaconda, spawned on Ken Schmidt’s ignorant Facebook post:

He is pond scum!

~ Laureen Hensley, Anaconda

Is he a good neighbor who shares our values ? I think not.

~ Eg Leipheimer, Anaconda

He is a total asshole.

~ Lenny Hoscheid, Anaconda

Is this the A-hole that won’t let me visit the sight where my Dad died at Gold Bar Basin? He needs some karma and fast!

~ Mona Clark, Anaconda

First, the public needs to take back our access through his land by a hostile prescriptive right. Who has the balls to join me?? Can I get at least 50 likes!!

~ Dale Schafer, Anaconda

The county could go up there… make their old road impassable!? Just an idea. Boulders and trees.  ~ Frank Allen, Anaconda

This Is How Violence And Vandalism Start!

It’s the “Anaconda Mob Mentality” at work, yet again. These people sound like bullies, just like County Attorney Krakowka. Folks should take the time to educate themselves about WHO Ilija Letica really is. As a child, this man lived in poverty, in a communist country. He dreamed about living in freedom, in America. He walked out of Communist Yugoslavia as a teenager, and finally realized his dream of coming to the United States. He worked very hard and became highly successful and he obviously has strong family values. I cannot blame this man for suing the county and standing his ground on Modesty Creek. He has a legal right to own land in Montana, whether the locals like it or not. And the National Forest belongs to ALL of us, Mr. Letica included.

Letica Is Much Smarter Than Krakowka.

I personally am quite happy that vehicles wider than 50 inches are NOT allowed in the upper forest via the Modesty Creek Road, and I am sure most conservation-minded individuals agree with me. Motorized vehicles wider than 50 inches are usually the ones causing the most damage to our forest lands.

Thank you, Mr. Letica, for keeping JEEPS out of the forest above your property! 

Perhaps Mr. Letica thinks the people of Anaconda are assholes too at this point, but I am betting Mr. Letica would rather file lawsuits against the county than call people assholes online. I don’t think it’s appropriate to try to run Mr. Letica off his property just because folks think they shouldn’t like him. Calling Mr. Letica cuss words on Facebook is really unnecessary, and so are Ken Schmidt’s ignorant, inflammatory comments. Facebook sucks. It seriously does. And I do believe the county government has got itself into a major pickle with Mr. Letica!

The Stop Lights Of Main Street

April 12, 2017 // Posted By Scoop Trooley

A Gentle Reminder To The District Court Staff

Being an outsider, who lives in the woods, sometimes I notice things that entrenched Anacondans may not notice. At approximately 2:45 P.M. yesterday, April 11, I was driving north on Main Street when I observed the Clerk of District Court Susie Krueger walking down Main Street in the same direction. Krueger was accompanied by two unidentified courthouse staffers. Apparently, these ladies go on “power walks” during their work breaks. I see these ladies frequently out walking on their breaks, and I do applaud that.

However, I would like to remind everyone that there are STOP LIGHTS on Main Street, and even the Clerk of District Court Susie Krueger must abide by those stop lights. Yesterday, I recall observing Krueger and her courthouse companions DEFYING a stop light and walking across Park Avenue on a red light. I myself had stopped for the stop light in my truck as I observed these ladies, with their backs to me, proceeding to walk across the street against the red light on the west side of Main Street.

This is called “setting a bad example for citizens, especially kids.” So please, everybody! Please, please abide by the law and observe all stop lights. When you see a red light, you must wait until that light turns green, and then you can proceed to cross the street. The reason we have stop light laws is so adults and children do not get squished by oncoming traffic. As a reminder, I have provided the following photo:


The District Court Judge himself, Ray Dayton, has trouble observing traffic laws, (and other important laws) so he is obviously setting a bad example for not only his office staff, but the citizens as well. Bad examples usually start at the top, and trickle down. Please let us all remember that.

So, as a special treat for Judge Ray Dayton, who doesn’t seem to understand basic laws and is setting a truly bad example right here in his own community, I will re-post a poem that I found on another blog:

Main Street, Anaconda

Jay Daytona of Main Street he was,
The Important District Court Judge.
As he fired up his engine
He thought he would mention
He does what he does…. just because.
His truck, it has vanity plates
With his name in big letters that say:
Hey, this is my truck
With a name you can trust.
I’m the judge who drives fast every day!
T’was on Main Street, right after court.
Daytona was speeding towards Fourth.
Headed straight to the park,
It was all on a lark,
He rear-ended a nun in a Ford!
And that stop light….. what was that thing?
His truck, it flew by with a ZING!
His gas pedal flattened,
Pedestrians scattered…
His truck now appeared to have wings!
Round the bend to the park he did fly!
As he breached the curve on two tires,
His engine was blazin’
And nothin’ could faze him.
Daytona drove Main Street in style!
Judge Daytona, he loved to drive fast!
Racing was fun, what a blast!
As one of the judges,
He’d never get busted,
He’d never be stopped in his tracks!

Brick Walls of Anaconda

Brick Walls That Talk To Us.

There are some really great old vintage ghost signs painted on the sides of buildings around Anaconda. Do you know where these are? I’m sure I missed a few. All photos were taken right here in Anaconda, Montana.



















Posted by Scoop Trooley // March 14, 2017 // Anaconda, Montana

CEO Bill Everett: More Of The Same?

Politician$: Playing With Taxpayer $$ Is $o FUN!

As most locals know (it was hard to escape it) we recently had a heated political race here in Anaconda. After many years as a community political fixture, Connie Ternes-Daniels was ousted by the newcomer Bill Everett in the recent Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Chief Executive race. I must say I was optimistic about Everett’s victory…. but I knew, deep down inside, I was probably being a little too idealistic about the situation. 

57360f6198267-image Bill Everett, ADLC Chief Executive Officer

There is something here in Anaconda that I call the “Magic Grapevine”. I have never lived in another community where gossip travels faster than right here in Anaconda. Gossiping in Anaconda is an absolutely revered institution that will live forever. As in any town, sometimes the gossip is false, but more often than not, the gossip I hear in Anaconda turns out to be quite accurate. You just have to talk to the right people.

That is why I started to get very nervous when I heard some local gossip about this guy, Bill Everett. I have only met Mr. Everett briefly, once or twice. I make it a point to never talk to politicians personally, because they never tell the truth to your face. I have had many conversations with some of Mr. Everett’s surrogates, however; people in his “clique”, so to speak. Anaconda is full of different cliques.

Now keep in mind, what I am about to tell you is strictly hearsay at this point. I cannot confirm one way or another that Bill Everett actually said this, but I do believe it to be true. It sounds about right. About a month after he was sworn in, I spoke with a local citizen who had actually spoken with Bill Everett about his new job. When asked how he liked working as the new CEO, Bill Everett (allegedly) said:

Oh, I love this job! Some men have new trucks to play with. I have a whole COUNTY to play with!  

I will leave it to the citizens to decide if Mr. Everett is “playing” with his county or “working” with his county. So far, to this blogger, it seems Mr. Everett’s new job has gone straight to his political newcomer’s head, and he is simply playing with taxpayer money. It appears to me that Everett, in his short time in office, has simply wasted a large chunk of taxpayer money by hiring even MORE ethically-challenged lawyers with dubious skills. How many county attorneys does one teeny little county actually needanyway? 

One of these recently-hired lawyers, Kathryn McEnery, was apparently hired illegally, so only time will tell if Bill Everett turns out to be an effective CEO or not. I have my doubts. Looks like more of the same old spin to me. Everett is only as good as the legal advice he is getting, so the citizens need to keep a close eye on his official performance.

Posted by $coop Trooley, February 25, 2017

County Attorney Krakowka “Hires” Another Deputy

Meet The New “Deputy Prosecutor”, Kathryn McEnery

According to the January 24, 2017 Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Commission meeting minutes, County Attorney Ben Krakowka has hired a deputy county attorney to replace Ellen Donohue, who took a job as the Mineral County Attorney. It is not clear whether Krakowka followed state law when he hired this new deputy. However, it appears that he did not. Apparently, nothing was mentioned in the commission meeting minutes about this latest “hiring” until it was a done deal.

There were no public meetings about this. This hiring was possibly mentioned by Krakowka at a public meeting prior to the new deputy actually being hired, but the commission did not vote on this. Ben Krakowka did not get approval from the commission for this. Here is the state law that dictates the hiring of deputy county attorneys:

Montana Code: 7-4-2703. Limitation on number of deputies. In counties having a taxable valuation of $30 million or more, the county attorney may appoint one chief deputy and one deputy. In all other counties, the county attorney may appoint a chief deputy or a deputy only with the approval of the board of county commissioners.

The Style Guide To Divorce, by Kathryn McEnery

The new deputy county attorney apparently has written a book about divorce, called the Style Guide To Divorce, which she sells online from her Facebook page, and on Amazon too. She apparently is actively marketing this book, even as she is starting her new job as the deputy Deer Lodge County Attorney. Meet Kathryn McEnery, Montana lawyer, lately from Thompson Falls:


Here is her Facebook page:

McEnery says:

“My husband made me what I am today… a happily divorced woman! You shouldn’t have to endure your divorce – here’s how to enjoy it.”


A Quote From Page 15 of The Style Guide To Divorce

Ms. McEnery is apparently alluding to her soon-to-be former husband:

“Whenever you hang up the phone on a pointless negotiation over piano lessons, or when you’ve just proof-read your child’s “My Family” essay, which mentions Dad’s new house on the lake, wash it all away with a cold, cheap beer. Then picture his face as you crush the can under your foot”.

You Can Buy The Style Guide To Divorce, here:


Is This Appropriate For A PROSECUTOR In Anaconda?

Anaconda has a very high rate of domestic violence, child abuse and alcoholism. I DO NOT THINK this lady, Kathryn McEnery, is an appropriate choice for a deputy county attorney in a town like this. The county attorney’s office deals with child protection cases, and has the power to remove children from the custody of their parents. so this choice of lawyers does not bode well.

I personally feel this online peddling of a book, glorifying divorce and meanness, especially when children may be involved, is most definitely tacky. It lends an appearance of impropriety to this lady’s new job. Is this lady a mother? Does she even have kids of her own? Being flippant about divorce when kids are involved is just not cool. Not stylish. Especially in a town like Anaconda.

You have to wonder why County Attorney Krakowka “hired” this particular lawyer. Krakowka states in the commission meeting minutes that Ms. McEnery “is currently looking for a place to live, and he (Krakowka) drove her around town today.” Mr. Krakowka further states “he thinks Ms. McEnery is going to work out very well.”


(Posted by Scoop Trooley, February 9, 2017)