I'm writing this letter in remembrance of the contribution made by the old miners and ranchers in this area before the big money arrived. Unfortunately their values and contributions are often considered quaint, obsolete and are nearly forgotten. These pioneers and old-timers helped create the middle class of this nation with their values and exceptionally hard labor. They definitely were not into wealth or power.

My grandfathers, father, uncles and neighbors labored in the mines — Crested Butte and Leadville. Aspen was very hard labor. These miners helped the little guy by changing labor laws, getting wages above near feudal conditions and providing education for their kids. They were not into glorifying wealth or power as they were guided by high morals and a belief in sharing the pie.

Today's words of luxurious and "luxed out" would make them cringe. Most old-timers would definitely love to see the aspens and pines remain on vacant land instead of another mega mansion going up.

I realize many people will consider these words dull, monotonous and another continuation of complaining. They will be immediately dismissed by the wealthy crowd and most of the colossal wealthy. Therefore I'll conclude with words which will be remembered. I do not approve of this type of language; however, these words definitely reflect the vernacular created by the current times. It's an expression used by the old miners in this area, which is: "They ain't worth the powder to blow their asses open." Fossil fuels in action. Those old miners had it right.

Joe Krizmanich

Glenwood Springs