.....Advertisement.....
.....Advertisement.....

Today's Opinions

  • More than ever, we need each other

    My heart aches over the stories I hear about heroin overdoses. Local fathers post stories about their sons and daughters, fatal victims of the heroin market. Police conduct raids. The illegal marketing demand continues to fund Afghanistan poppy farmers. Other illegal drug markets cause societal issues, as meth labs contaminate homes and acreage. A house in my neighborhood is selling for half its former market value because of meth lab damage. More than ever, we live in a drug culture.
    When I google “heroin,” however, my top hit is an article by the National Institute of Drug Abuse indicating that nearly half of young people who inject heroin reported abusing prescription opioids before starting to use heroin.
    As bad as our illegal drug market has become, the potential for the abuse of prescription drugs is a much more pervasive problem throughout America today.
    This conversation is frequently fueled by stories about yet another superstar and his/her battles with prescription drugs, the most recent being that of Prince. I am not sufficiently familiar with his pain and challenges to comment on his possible addictions, but I am saddened at his plight and that of millions of Americans who deal with chronic pain.

  • Enchantment and economy in your own back yard

    BY LORETTA HALL
    Guest Columnist

  • Judging uncertainty is a risk

    The great blessing that science gives us humans is a growing supply of knowledge.  
    The great curse that science puts on us is a growing supply of knowledge.
    And everything we learn brings the next unknown, which may be a new cure, a new cause of harm, or a sizable chance of both.  
    The thorny work for us is to blend new knowledge safely into a busy world. Democracy slows the work to a tortoise’s pace, with so much time given to the enormous patchwork of public opinions.  
    So we keep doing our best to minimize the risks that are intertwined in a world of new knowledge, unknowns, and opinions of every shade. Our lot is called the human condition.
    Such struggles are often in the news, with scant history. Lead made news recently.  
    Hazards from lead predate Ancient Rome and were clarified as science grew. In the last century, science learned specific chances of harm to different people from lead in different amounts for enough time.  
    A proper question to ask is, “Should we get rid of lead in painted walls and lead in working pipes as soon as we have that knowledge?” After all, some children will eat leaded paint from walls. Lead pipe systems are mostly handled better.   

  • Presidential campaign turns into a pie-throwing contest

    Gary Johnson is saying something worth listening to. It’s about the conduct of the presidential election.
    New Mexico’s former governor is running for president again as the candidate of the Libertarian Party. He probably will be the only third-party candidate on the ballot in all 50 states. I am not a fan of Johnson or his political philosophy, but he’s absolutely right about the process.
    He tried to run as a Republican but was not given a chance to appear on Republican debate stages because he was not high enough in the polls. As he has said, the only way to get higher in the polls is to get enough exposure on TV. Debates are one critically important way to do that. The other way is through all the interviews Johnson didn’t get.
    Last fall and into the spring, when Republican candidates were interviewed, they were usually asked to comment on Donald Trump, and were not given a chance to talk about their own views on national policy. It was disgraceful.
    Senator Bernie Sanders didn’t get much exposure, either, you recall.
    Way back before the public was invited, a few network executives apparently decided which candidates were going to get coverage and which would be ignored.

  • Loan Fund expands to state’s creative entrepreneurs

    In the first 15 months of its CreativeFund program, The Loan Fund helped more than 100 creative entrepreneurs in Albuquerque and Santa Fe secure a loan or receive training or advice to help turn their creative talents into successful business ventures.
    The program has been so successful, in fact, that The Loan Fund is planning to expand its offerings statewide.
    It’s all part of an effort by the nonprofit – a community development financial institution with an economic and social improvement mission – to serve a group of typically debt-averse individuals who support themselves through creative endeavors of some form, said Matt Loehman, The Loan Fund’s director of development and special projects.
    Changing mind-sets
    Creative enterprises are the primary source of income for more than 43,000 New Mexicans, according to a 2015 report by the University of New Mexico’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research. That’s equivalent to the number of New Mexicans who work in construction and 50 percent more than the number of manufacturing workers.

  • Seven, eight ... nine brothers in WWII

    Back during Memorial Day 2014, I wrote a piece on five brothers who served in World War II.
    I was blown-away impressed by the Bailey boys, from my neck of the woods in Western Pennsylvania, and still am. Imagine my surprise when a reader responded with a package of clippings informing me of his family, which had seven brothers in the war.
    Yes, seven.
    His name is Ted, and his parents were Stella and Walter Pietkiewicz, Polish immigrants in Pittsburgh.
    I wrote up that story, thinking no family could out-do the Pietkiewicz crew. I soon learned I was wrong. 
    That article led to a bunch of mail composed by computers and typewriters alike. One was sent by Stanley Freedman reporting the seven sons of Fanny Greco. They lived in Providence, Rhode Island.
    All served in World War II.
    Another came from Tina Link of Delphos, Ohio, who told me of her maternal grandmother, “Mrs. John Bohnlein,” as the attached September 1945 newspaper clip identified this selfless mother, who likewise lent seven sons to the cause.
    Then followed an email from Shayne Ghere informing me of Roy and Lillie Ghere.
    They parented 17 children in tiny Arcola, Ill. Seven of their boys served in World War II.

  • Former gov. Johnson leaning anti-Trump

    New Mexico is in the spotlight with three high-profile campaign visits, but another big day looms. The Libertarian Party will choose its candidate for president at the end of May. Gary Johnson is getting national attention from the left and the right - especially from the right - as the anti-Trump. Some pundits speculate that Johnson could even draw disgruntled Bernie supporters.
    Last week our former governor notched 10 percent support in a Fox News poll. Compare that with the 1 percent Johnson polled in 2012.
    It’s within striking distance of the 15 percent he needs to be part of televised debates. He sweetened his ticket with former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld as vice president. Weld is a Republican who was popular in a blue state.
    The Libertarians will probably be the only non-mainstream party to appear on the ballot in all 50 states. Which is why their Florida convention – and Gary Johnson – will draw unprecedented scrutiny.
    All this and he looks way better without a shirt than Vladimir Putin, said blogger Emily Zanotti.

  • Assets in Action: School is over, you are on your way!

    If you are reading this late Wednesday afternoon, you are done! Oh sure, I mean most of the kids are done with school, but in many – and I say many – ways, we as the parents are also done.
    If you are also the parent of a high school student, I’m sorry, there’s still one more day ahead for you. Oh sure, you will hear about it entirely tonight and again in the morning until they get on the bus or drive to school for the last time this year.
    If you need a comeback, hey that snow day – as late as it was – was glorious! It was ridiculous if you lived in White Rock, but no less glorious to stay in our pajamas that morning.
    Oh and OK if you are married to someone that works in a school, you will get a repeat of what happened on Thursday again on Friday.
    This day and age, we often hear how kids today don’t appreciate the people that give us the freedoms we appreciate today.
    I would like to say that as we approach the last few days of school, local teenagers are still working at letting our service men and women know they are appreciated throughout the year.
    So while many will spend the weekend enjoying parties and an extra day off, take the time to give thanks to those that gave their lives in honor of our country and also appreciate those that serve today.