It’s been a long and productive week.

My notebook is chock full of tidbits. Since I’m sleep deprived and unable to decide which one is worthy of a column, I have a better idea. I am introducing a new Common Sense Club notebook.

– Monday was the day legislators rolled into Bismarck to begin the 63rd legislative assembly. I never cease to be amazed at how hard these citizens servants work. The capitol is one busy place. Most of them have “day jobs” and families, all of which they leave behind to serve North Dakota’s greater good for 4 months. I look forward to watching them work.

– And now we’re asking them to work Saturday’s too! A new program will air from 10am to noon on our “Legislature Today” flagship radio station KFYR 550 AM plus AM 1100 “The Flag” and Bakken Talkradio 1090 “The Flag.” We will be hearing from different legislators every weekend from their communities.

– Monday was also the kick-off party for the newly “Dale Wetzel-ized” Great Plains Examiner, Great Plains News and the “Legislature Today” radio show. The cover man and girl Governor Jack and Betsy Dalrymple. Did you see the great photo of the first couple on the cover of the North Dakota Living magazine? Almost as fun as our $13 Billion Man headline/photo in the January Great Plains Examiner. We had a great turnout. Gary Emineth, Dale Wetzel and I appreciate all of the well wishes and prayers of support.

– Tuesday brought the big speech of the week. Common Sense Club kudos’s to Gov Jack for remembering who makes North Dakota’s economy go. It’s not government. It’s the risk takers like those he introduced including big players like CHS, formerly Cenex-Harvest States, Carl Casale, CEO for their $1.3 billion construction project at Spiritwood that will produce 2,200 tons of ammonia fertilizer a day and employ between 100 and 150 people and small but mighty Summers Manufacturing in Devils Lake and president Deb Anderson. I loved the story about Jeremy Doan of the Black Leg Ranch near McKenzie, a tourist hot spot destination. Five generations of the Doan Family have operated a working cattle ranch since 1882. But Jeremy and his brother, Jay, have greatly diversified the family business to into a very successful agri-tourism venture. I hear it’s almost as nice as the Triple T Ranch in Stanley, North Dakota. Things take time Jeremy.

– I can’t resist wondering how “values voters” received the speech however. Why ignore them? Without a defense of faith and family issues, the prosperity we enjoy will be a short term victory. It was a missed opportunity by Governor Dalrymple. Don’t be afraid to merge the agenda of “social” and “fiscal” conservatives. We should be on the same team in the North Dakota miracle state. Where do you think the oil came from anyway? No wonder NDSU thinks it can defy it’s funders and partner with the nation’s abortion champion to indoctrinate North Dakota youth.

-Who will be North Dakota’s next Governor? I know it’s just a tad early to start that sweepstakes. So sue me. I’m keeping a list of names I’ve heard floating through the Great Hall. Keep guessing, but here are some clues. With the exception of 2 recent exports to DC, the remaining 6 top contenders were walking the halls of the state capitol this week. One of those is already a statewide office holder of course. Could that be any more exciting for Republicans? What a bench! Only two are Democrats. But one of the two could win. That’s been proven recently. Can you guess who they are? We’ll wager some Steak Fingers from the famous Peacock grill, which might just be the best restaurant in ND thanks to Dale Zimmerman’s vision.

– I hope Larry King will forgive me for borrowing from his USA Today column style. Remember those? Speaking of Larry King, I miss his TV show on CNN. If King was dead, he’d be rolling in his grave over the performance of his hideous replacement Piers Morgan. The Alex Jones debate is must-see TV. Bring it! Alex Jones is without question the best defender of our 2nd amendment in America today. Runner up: Representative Roscoe Streyle of Minot.

See you next week folks!