Max is a proud Ogden boy, graduate of Uintah Elementary School, South Ogden Junior High and Bonneville High School.

He then packed up his Subaru and journeyed to the big city to study all kinds of random stuff at the University of Utah.

Random stuff became Max’s specialty, meandering to a history degree and then into a two-year stint as a VISTA helping set up the Emma Lou Thayne Community Service Center at Salt Lake Community College.

Turns out Graduate School in random stuff is called Seminary, where you spend three years learning more history, psychology, theology and no-longer-spoken languages.

The real disappointment, a Master of Divinity did not qualify Max to make a fluffy white vanilla-pecan confection.

But from great disappointment comes revelation: there’s a job in random stuff and it’s called journalism!

And so Max’s meandering path led to the University of Southern California Annenberg School, and on to Palm Springs and home to Utah.

Of course, love leads from randomness to specificity, and Max loves politics. He’s not ashamed to admit he was a David Brinkley fan when it WASN’T cool (you band-wagoners know who you are!)

When Max found a woman who actually had fun on a first date at the Utah State Legislature hearing the “State of the Judiciary” address, he knew he’d found the one.

That was in 1994. Natalie still tolerates him to this day, and his two sons have no choice.

Recent Articles
  • Utah man enlists Hollywood stars and D.C. power brokers in quest for justice

    DRAPER, Utah — If his mandatory minimum federal sentence were still in force, Weldon Angelos would still have forty years of prison ahead of him. His crime? Selling $350 worth of marijuana to an informant who said Angelos was carrying a gun. When he was arrested, Angelos had just produced an album with rapper Snoop Dog, marveling at his good fortune as a Utah kid making it in hip-hop. Instead, Angelos spent 13 years in prison. From age 22 to […]

  • Max’s chat with Microsoft’s artificial intelligence bot more like ‘Mean Girls’ than ‘2001’

    SALT LAKE CITY — If you want to hear an artificial intelligence social bot tell this reporter “screw you,” watch the video above. It’s not the stuff of great science fiction like “2001, a Space Odyssey,” where the smart spaceship computer HAL rebels against his human pilot. My experience with Microsoft’s Zo was unexpected. I thought we’d have an interesting chat about random stuff, but she was pretty quick to insult me. Zo is Microsoft’s second attempt at testing a […]

  • Max Facts: Utah veterans more likely to have children at home and more prone to suicide

    Veteran Households with Children: Utah Veterans stand out for having more households with children than veteran populations in any other state in the country. In Utah, about 38 percent of Veterans have children in their household. That means two things: Vets in Utah have the added stress of transitioning and dealing with war-related issues while supporting a family. Utah children feel the impacts of war more than children in other states. Veterans by County: This is more a statistic for […]

  • A political ad attacking Fox 13’s Bob Evans!?

    SALT LAKE CITY — As the 2018 campaign heads into its final stretch, I decided to take the lessons I learned from fact-checking political ads and make an ad of my own. I took one of the nicest, most professional guys in the world, Fox 13’s own Bob Evans, and made an ad pumping him up, and then using the same information to tear him down. The point? It’s partly to have fun. But it’s also to show that manipulating […]

  • ‘He’s been unleashed,’ says Wendy Nelson, wife of Russell M. Nelson, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

    SALT LAKE CITY — When Wendy Nelson was Wendy Watson, she was a professor of marriage and family therapy at Brigham Young University, so it should come as no surprise that she would provide rare insight in an interview about her husband, Russell M. Nelson, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. “I have seen him changing the last ten months. It’s as though he’s been unleashed,” said Nelson in an interview provided by the Church’s news […]

  • In Fourth District, Love demands opposition ads cease airing

    SALT LAKE CITY — With five days to go, Utah’s Fourth Congressional District race is growing more negative, and now lawyers for Republican incumbent Mia Love say Democratic Political Action Committees have gone too far and their ads have to be taken off the air. The ads in question come from the “Patriot Majority” PAC and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and each ad says that Love “admitted” to raising illegal campaign contributions. Matthew Sanderson of Caplin and Drysdale sent […]

  • Clementine the zebra debuts at Hogle Zoo with mom

    SALT LAKE CITY — Clementine the zebra is just one week old, but she’s already running with her mom and learning how to keep herself safe. Of course, safety should not be an issue in the confines of Utah’s Hogle Zoo African Savannah exhibit. Clementine is actually the third baby zebra at Hogle in the last year, which is great news, according to lead keeper Melissa Farr. “They are classified as vulnerable to extinction,” said Farr. Along with the Zebras, […]

  • Utah politicians have set a record for fundraising this year

    SALT LAKE CITY — Utah politicians have already set a record for fundraising this year, spending more than $12 million on federal races, and much of it has come from special interests through Political Action Committees, or PACs. The numbers also show that PAC money flows primarily to incumbents in Utah. Utah’s candidates for the U.S. House and Senate are required by law to file regular campaign finance data with the Federal Elections Commission, and the Center for Responsive Politics, […]

  • New center at HAFB supports entire online structure of Department of Defense

    HILL AIR FORCE BASE — Hill Air Force Base is now the site of a program that maintains internet operations for the Department of Defense and defends those operations from cyber attacks. The Defense Information Systems Agency Global Operations West sits in an unremarkable building on the Air Force Base. Inside, 200 employees, most hired in Utah, support the information needs of soldiers, sailors and airmen in their activities around the world. Program director Laura Williams said those employees work […]

  • Utah mail-in voting and voter registration surpass 2016 levels

    SALT LAKE CITY — More than a fourth of voters in Salt Lake County have mailed in their ballots, and thousands of voters continue to register, showing participation in Utah’s 2018 midterms may surpass that seen in the last presidential election. Sherrie Swensen, Salt Lake County Clerk, said the rolls of active voters in Utah’s most populous county have already swelled beyond where they were in 2016. “In the presidential election at the very end of the registration period we […]

  • Judging judges on your ballot is easy with the official cheat sheet!

    SALT LAKE CITY — The ballot in your mailbox or at your polling place will ask you whether state and local judges should keep their jobs. Judicial retention has been a part of Utah ballots for decades, and for decades a large percentage of voters have left the section blank, not wanting to pass judgement without information. Enter The website of the Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission, created in 2008, provides snapshot reviews of every judge, along with in depth […]

  • Middle income Utahns bear brunt of state and local tax burden

    (KSTU) — The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy released a report showing how every state and the District of Columbia use tax policy in regressive and progressive ways. Their conclusion: all but five states and the District of Columbia have regressive systems, meaning they favor the wealthy over middle and/or low-income earners. While Utah is among the regressive states, you’ll see in the report above their Utah does is less regressive than most states. Our partners at the Salt […]