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Today's Opinions

  • Oil and gas takes new tack

    Two heavy hitters passed from the oil and gas industry in recent weeks.

    Pete Hanagan headed the New Mexico Oil and Gas Association for 15 years until 1985. He died at age 81 in Ireland.

    The association’s other Irishman, Bob Gallagher, got his walking papers a week after Hanagan’s death. Both men hailed from Roswell, and both practiced law, but the similarities end there. In the differences between the two is a tale for our times in New Mexico.

  • Fund schools, cut elsewhere

    I know that most people are struggling with the way things are going these days. I, for one, am struggling with the way our society views education.

  • Bike lanes don’t maintain themselves

    Some bicyclists want bike lanes all over Los Alamos and our county council has accommodated many of their desires. Indeed, the entire stretch of Diamond Drive is slated to be so marked when finished.

  • The Earth and its heebie-jeebie shakes

    Not all Midwesterners realize they live in a region where earthquakes can strike, but they got a small reminder of that simple fact earlier this month when a 3.8 Richter scale temblor struck in northern Illinois. Let’s hope we can learn more from the event than just what the passing headlines might lead us to think about — because the center of our country is woefully under-prepared for much larger quakes yet to come.

  • The three deficit conundrum

    This country is currently facing a huge triple threat to its future in the form of deficits: the first is a deficit of trust; the second is a deficit of jobs; and the third is a deficit of dollars.

    The current administration and Congress, apparently unable to break free from the bonds of ideological thinking, continue flailing away but repeatedly come back to the table with the same untenable solution and that’s to spend more money.

    That’s not the answer. It never has been and it never will be. Government cannot spend its way to economic prosperity. While the deficit of dollars that began in the Bush years was the equivalent of a hand grenade going off in the economy, the onset of the Great Recession and subsequent stimulus spending has resulted in something like the detonation of a nuclear bomb with a mushroom cloud that portends to obliterate any chance at financial prosperity for generations to come.

    As long as the specter of a lame economy looms large on the horizon, there’s little likelihood that the deficits of trust or jobs can be reduced either. Government can only gain the trust of the American people when it makes sound policy decisions. Likewise, as long as private sector employers are uncertain of the economy, hiring will be slow to rebound – such as what we’re experiencing right now.

  • Budget needs more than a fix

    SANTA FE — They just don’t get it. New Mexico is in a Great Recession that won’t be solved by quick fixes or nickel-and-dime fixes. And yet Santa Fe seems to be in denial.

    Even if a budget bill had passed, we are still at the beginning of a long road. We’ll have many more special sessions and regular sessions before we’re out of this hole.

    Sooner or later our governor and lawmakers will have to face the fact that minor surgery is not going to cure our budget problems.

  • Economics 101

    One frequently hears the complaint that Los Alamos has too little retail choice – too few stores, too limited an inventory in the few stores we have and too high prices. The unspoken assumption behind these complaints is that this is the fault of the retailers themselves, or perhaps of the county government.  In fact, it is no one’s fault but our own.

  • The thrill of victory, the agony of boredom

    It was a dark and stormy night.  The midnight air hung like a wet dishrag scented with the musty reality of stale promises, neither pride nor prejudice able to taint the flaking veneer of lost hope.

    The young college student gazed out his apartment’s broken window and wondered if it had been a mistake to major in paleontological reproductive systems.  Perhaps his parents were right and he should have considered meercat podiatry.