Jim Jones

Jim Jones

Jim Jones served as Idaho attorney general for eight years (1983-1991) and as a justice of the Idaho Supreme Court for 12 years (2005-2017). His weekly columns are collected at

Idaho GOP Convention stage

Will Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde control the soul of Idaho’s Republican Party?

By: - December 19, 2022

The serious split in the personality of the present-day GOP in Idaho was demonstrated in two articles that recently appeared in the media. The Kootenai County Republican Central Committee (KCRCC), savoring its evil Mr. Hyde persona, announced on Dec. 8 that U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Georgia, would keynote its Lincoln Day Dinner in February. […]

Lawrence Wasden

Idaho owes a debt of gratitude to its longest-serving attorney general

By: - December 9, 2022

Attorney General Lawrence Wasden will be stepping down at the end of the year, after providing 33 years of dedicated service in the AG’s office. I hired Lawrence in 1989 to perform legal work for the State Tax Commission. He worked his way up in the AG’s office until he was elected as attorney general […]

Top view of people holding hands together

Idaho must once again send the hate mongers packing

By: - December 5, 2022

Hate and bigotry often lurk just beneath the surface of civil societies. So long as a society is united in disapproving of hateful words and actions, those evil twins remain suppressed. When they receive official approval, they rise to the surface and infect society like a virus. A society must maintain continued vigilance to keep […]

World War II veterans

Americans can honor our veterans by doing their democracy homework

By: - November 11, 2022

Every year on Nov. 11, Americans gather at Veterans Day observations to honor and thank America’s veterans for their service to the country. It is certainly right and proper that they do so, but is that the extent of what our countrymen must do to show appreciation for those who put their lives at risk […]

A courtroom with many seats filled but many left empty, and an attorney makes oral argument

Jim Jones: Idaho’s state lawyers are top-rate, but we don’t pay them that way

By: - October 27, 2022

During this election silly-season, we’ve heard all kinds of crazy claims made by those running for office. You don’t like to think that someone would make claims that are untrue, but it definitely happens. When a suspect claim is made, it would be handy to find someone who is informed on the subject to get […]

Empty school classroom

What we risk by narrowly restricting our kids’ view of history and culture

By: - October 13, 2022

I’ve previously written about extremists in the Idaho Legislature who want to ban certain books and academic theories from our schools. Their claims are generally false or, at best, over-hyped. Critical race theory is one of their favorite whipping boys. Let’s talk about that, because some legislators want to ban both the classroom discussion of […]

rotunda at the Idaho Capitol

Zombie laws, designed to intimidate, clutter Idaho’s statute books

By: - October 5, 2022

Idaho’s law books have become cluttered in recent years with laws that were placed on the books by preening extremists, more for the purpose of gaining votes than addressing real public problems. I like to call them zombie laws because they just languish there on the law books, serving no legitimate purpose. Rather, the laws […]

Alaska I voted stickers

Alaska has shown how to achieve sensible election reform Idaho can learn from

By: - September 13, 2022

The Gem State had an open primary system prior to 2012. When the primary election rolled around voters would just request a ballot for the party of their choice – Republican, Democrat, whatever – and then vote among the candidates on that ballot. It worked well, but not to the satisfaction of right-wing Republicans who […]

Brielle Robinson at advocacy group gathering

Judge Idaho’s congressional delegation by their actions on veterans bill, not their words

By: - August 9, 2022

Members of Idaho’s congressional delegation would probably not receive any heroism awards for their actions relating to the PACT Act, also known as the “burn pit” bill. When the act came up for a vote, our congressional troops flat failed to protect the backs of sick veterans. U.S. Reps. Russ Fulcher and Mike Simpson voted […]

Ryan Cole in a white lab coat stands talking in front of a banner that says "Frontline Flash"

Why does this guy still have an Idaho medical license?

By: - August 3, 2022

Garden City pathologist Ryan Cole burst onto the national scene as a leading COVID-19 vaccination denier and purveyor of unproven cures in July of 2021. Speaking at a meeting of America’s Frontline Doctors, a group of COVID-19 anti-vaccination activists, Cole falsely described the life-saving vaccines as “fake,” a “clot shot” and “needle rape.” He falsely […]

Empty school classroom

The U.S. Supreme Court warns against state funding of private schools

By: - July 6, 2022

The U.S. Supreme Court has again ruled that a state will be required to fund religious schooling if, but only if, it provides funding for private schooling. Speaking for the court’s Republican supermajority in Carson v. Makin, Chief Justice John Roberts put it this way: “A State need not subsidize private education. But once a […]

Abraham Lincoln Memorial

As we celebrate the Fourth of July, just what is an American patriot?

By: - July 4, 2022

As the nation observes the 246th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, we will often hear mention of patriots and patriotism. But, just what does it mean to be a patriot? The dictionary defines the term as “a person who vigorously supports their country and is prepared to defend it against enemies or detractors.” That […]