Alexander Muromcew and Kelsey Yarzab

Recorded July 31, 2023 Archived July 31, 2023 56:31 minutes
0:00 / 0:00
Id: osh000028


A One Small Step conversation between Alexander Muromcew (59) and Kelsey Yarzab (24) at the public library in Jackson Hole, Wyoming where they discuss their beliefs and opinions around Libertarianism and Communitarianism, Capitalism and Socialism, and the role of government. Both are East Coast transplants to the West and discuss the ways in which they have engaged in public service and advocacy in Teton County.

Subject Log / Time Code

Kelsey Yarzab (KY) discusses why she signed up for One Small Step.
Alex Muromcew (AM) discusses why he signed up for One Small Step as a member of the Republican minority in Teton County.
AM asks KY what she means by identifying as a "leftist communitarian" vs. communism "community based power" and community activism. AM mentions his father fled communist Russia.
AM elaborates on why she thinks workers need to have an ownership stake in order to eliminate corporatocracy.
KY asks AM why he changed his mind to become pro-union. KY talks about the union her father was a part of as a police officer and the benefits for her family.
AM talks about his upbringing in DC and his father's career as a Foreign Service Officer and his upbringing surrounding public service and CIA agents with specialities in sovietology with specializations in Eastern Europe. KY mentions she wanted to be a foreign service officer.
KY asks AM about running for public office in Teton County as a minority Republican for a State House Seat. "Its really tough to be a Republican in this county."
AM reflects on the influence that his grandfather, an art historian, had on his life teaching him about the humanities.
KY talks about her father, a police officer, who instilled in her a value for serving others, community activism, and also teaching her how to shoot, hunt, and fish. AM says, "I guess you can't be too liberal if you know how to shoot and hunt." (@ 23:30)
AM describes his political values and then KY describes hers.
KY talks about the government providing universal health care. AM contributes to high costs of health care and insurance premiums. KY references Norway and Sweden as good examples of universal health care.
KY asks AM if he has any "noble goals". He responds that his goal is conserving "the last in tact ecosystem in North America" in the Greater Yellowstone Area which includes Teton County.
AM wants the state to consider taxing second homeowners to address TC's concentration of wealth.
AM brings up SPET (Specific Purpose Excise Tax) initiatives as a problem for funding public programs and KY talks about why it is the best option available to pay for capital projects.
KY brings up housing as the most important issue in the community to her and how moving every 6 months brings personal disruptions and also motivates her to organize and activate others to care for housing.
AM says his nightmare is that Jackson becomes a "themepark" where people are bussed in to work here. But he doesn't want the town and the county to build so much housing that they become the largest landlord.
KY mentions that non-profits are dependent on the benevolence of the wealthy and goes on to talk about the limitations of non-profits.
AM thinks the non-profits have a better track record in building housing than the Town of Jackson.
KY respects but doesn't believe in the ideology and economic background of fiscal conservativism that AM believes in. And AM doesn't agree with KY's faith that government doesn't agree with her belief in government to fix the social problems.
KY hopes that morale among her community and peers improves by providing more opportunities for people to have a stable place to live.
AM hears that lament and mentions that although he is in the wealthy 1% but feels like he might "tumble into the 99%" by the magnitude of wealth that is coming into the community. And calls on those with the privilege of wealth to reconsider their philanthropy.


  • Alexander Muromcew
  • Kelsey Yarzab

Recording Locations

Teton County Library

Venue / Recording Kit


Partnership Type