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Columns

  • Fried Light: Debt in the saddle rides mankind

    In case nobody noticed, the country has been run on a vast array of debt instruments for quite awhile now.

    It is our common concession to the imperfectability of humans that we can all have a little more than we deserve, a little sooner than we can afford it, perhaps even a lot more of what we could never, ever have afforded.

    National debt, consumer debt, credit card debt, savings and loan debt, hedge-fund debt, mortgages, home-improvement loans and industrial revenue bonds. What ever happened to layaway?

  • Pearce, Wilson united on ... oil

    Tom Udall has to be feeling smug. He is the New Mexico version of John McCain. Tom is enjoying a leisurely and inexpensive stroll toward the Democratic nomination for United States senator.

    You have to believe the New Mexico congressman is taking great delight as he watches his Republican opponents rip one another to shreds. As is true on the national scene with Obama and Clinton, New Mexico’s Heather Wilson and Steve Pearce are digging deep into their pockets trying to make the other look inept.

  • I stand by my state

    Caller ID immediately identified the ring.

    “Might as well put the meatloaf on hold,” I nodded to my bride, who was laying out placemats, “it’s Barney from New Jersey.”

    Barney doesn’t call as often as he once did. It is just as well. He likes to gig me about what he perceives as New Mexico’s shortcomings, and it gives me indigestion.

  • Survey's problem shows path forward

    My phone rang in its best business voice. The person asked if I would answer questions in an environmental survey hired by Company X. I said sure.

    The survey pertained to environmental sustainability. The term means a large-scale system that helps keep itself working well. This quest plays a big part in what follows.

    Who hired the survey doesn’t matter. With any name or none, the same story emerges.

    The first question brought out the usual snare that surveys have. That is, each answer had to fit into a set box.

  • Guest Opinion: The other side of the skate board park

    In a recent Monitor County Corner column (April, 17), Robert Gibson, vice-chair of the county council (CC) described his view of county government as both “owner” and “regulator” of county projects. Then he claims “as owner, the county decides where we want a project, how much we are willing to pay for it, and where it should be.” The CC sets themselves up as both judge and jury, switching back and forth to their advantage.

  • Guest Opinion: Army Reserve celebrates 100 years

    April 23 marks the 100th anniversary of the U.S. Army Reserve. This is occasion is noteworthy given the history of the Army Reserve, and its mission since September 11, 2001.The Army Reserve’s 100th anniversary validates our nation’s enduring need for such a force, and the event gives Americans the opportunity to recognize the contributions of hundreds of thousands of men and women who served our nation for a century.Further, our anniversary recognizes that the force has changed dramatically over 100 years to meet the needs of our nation.

  • Off and On: Support education – it is the key

    A recent study reported that about 70 percent of U.S. students graduate on time with a regular diploma and about 1.2 million students drop out annually.

    Locally, we had only 22 dropouts out of some 1,200 students last year.

    Nevertheless, the numbers are disturbing.

    Former Secretary of State Colin Powell, founding chair of the group doing the study, told the Associated Press that “when more than 1 million students a year drop out of high school, it’s more than a problem – it’s a catastrophe.”

  • Skate Park approvals following normal process

    Last Sunday’s (April 13, 2008) Monitor editorial admitted understandable confusion about the approvals for the Skate Park and “hoped someone in the county can set us straight.” This is an attempt to do so.Much of the confusion arises from the county government’s two distinct roles in public projects. It is the “owner” of the project. It also is the “regulator” with responsibility to determine that the project meets all legal requirements applicable to any owner.

  • What do nerds know about prom?

    Let me say this about Gary King. He is your basic good human being and is serving us well as New Mexico attorney general.No surprise. He is the son of a storied and legendary governor, Bruce King. Bruce and Alice are quite a team. Solid stock there.Here’s the thing, though. One guesses Gary is a top-level nerd. Look at the record. Grew up on the family ranch in Stanley. Attended New Mexico State University. Became an organic chemist.

  • Columnist Bill? How dare he!

    There is a code among newspaper columnists. We do not engage in household maintenance that might deprive a tradesman of a fee.Can you imagine George Will on his back under the kitchen sink? Not going to happen. Reason is, Will respects his tradesman. How would Will feel if his plumber began writing a column for Newsweek?That’s why I am so blasted furious with a certain governor right now. And you know who. Mr. Richardson. Big Bill. Billy Boy. William Blaire Richardson the Third, born in Pasadena, Calif.