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Today's Opinions

  • LEtters to the Editor 9-22-17

    Wildlife are not pets

    Dear Editor,
    I was pretty surprised that LA County is actually contemplating fining folks  for not “securing” their trash bins in a “secure” building? Many residents don’t have a garage or secure building to place their trash bin in? I spoke to one resident who stated, “I guess I’ll have to bring my trash bin into my home.” Ahhh the smell of rotting garbage.

    Then there are those folks who actually put out food and water for the bears/wildlife. They are concerned the wildlife is not adequately hydrated or healthy, seriously? These residents are teaching/conditioning wildlife to be dependent, they are not pets. I believe fines should be imposed on these folks before contemplating such a ridiculous proposition.

    Dave McClard
    Los Alamos
    Boy Scouts are a Los
    Alamos tradition, active presence

    Dear Editor,
    The Los Alamos Ranch School began 100 years ago as the dream of Ashley Pond Jr. who envisioned a school where boys who were growing up sickly in polluted eastern cities could come out west, ride horses and recover their health.

    He hired A.J. Connell, a forest ranger and Boy Scout leader, to direct the school.

  • Questioning own mortality in Mexico earthquake

    I guess it’s always interesting when you stare the possibility of the end in the face.
    I am not sure if I did or didn’t.

    When that earthquake rumbled through Cuernavaca at 1:14 p.m. Tuesday, I honestly questioned my mortality.

    I sat in the bedroom of the guest house of our awesome land lady in Los Tabachines community in south Cuernavaca.
    Cuernavaca is about 50 miles south of the Mexico City.

    Anyway, it was a typical Tuesday, I was trying to get through writer’s block and fulfill my freelance obligations to various clients.

    But then, the earth shook.

    It didn’t just shake, the ground was moving.

    Jill, who was in the kitchen, yelled, ‘’EARTHQUAKE.’’

    I knew what it was but I was just in shock.

    I talked to my dad today and he said we had been through a couple of tremors growing up in Tokyo.

    I had felt nothing like this.

    I could not even up stand up.

    Nori, our faithful Belgian Sheepdog who had been watching me from the bed, jumped up and we somehow got to the kitchen and then to the back yard. Jill was there on her knees. She told me she could not walk because of the quake.

    She told me that she could not believe I was still standing. When I thought about it, I was surprised too.

  • The ‘how’ of code enforcement

    BY DAVID IZRAELEVITZ
    Los Alamos County Council Chair

    In part one of my editorial on code enforcement, I covered the “why” behind the program. Today, I would like to address in some detail the “how” of code enforcement, a process which is managed within the Community Development Department (CDD) by two full-time Code Enforcement Officers.

    My hope is that by explaining a little more about the process, I can help clear up confusion and concern in our community.

    Let’s begin with clarifying two terms that seem to be interchangeable when the public discusses this sensitive topic, but are very different: Notice Of Violation (NOV) and citation. In fact, these are two very different terms that occur in different steps of the process. While county code sets the standards, our process that implements enforcement of these standards is modeled after best practices used in thousands of communities across America. I do not believe that it is overly restrictive for a town our size and population.

  • Time to ask, ‘What makes us awesome’

    If you are struggling in your relationship with a teenager or have a senior that will graduate this year, you must read any books by Patricia Hoolihan.
    Recently I came across one of her quotes that might re-define how we see things today. “A pat on the back, though only a few vertebrae removed from a kick in the pants, is miles ahead in results.” – Bennett Cerf
    There was a time when we praised kids so much, we were worried about damaging them, but now I wonder if we have let the pendulum swing too far the other way.
    In 2013, two high school students Faith Glasco and Elizabeth Hjelvik started, “The Wall of Awesome,” in Los Alamos. I am proud that their efforts still continue on a smaller scale today, but I am asking you to take it one step further.
    Take a minute this week to ask your kids one of two questions…or both would be great. What makes you awesome? What makes life awesome?
    The answers might just surprise you and they may struggle, just make sure you pause long enough to make them think about it. I also suggest you have an answer for them when they have nothing.

  • Celebrate the sunshine and N.M.’s low disaster risk

    In my garage is an old suitcase packed with old clothes. It’s to grab in an emergency. 

    There’s a sturdy canvas bag tucked away in a suitable place, where a couple of checkbooks are kept and a backup computer hard drive is stored.

    Because I live in central New Mexico, I probably will never need those things. New Mexico is a pretty good place to avoid natural disasters.  

    The state is ranked 40th out of 50 states for the number of disaster declarations and 33rd of 50 for relative riskiness by the company Core Logic, based on an analysis of storm damage.

    But, this week as we appreciate the sunshine and our dry feet, let’s be relaxed but not complacent. The recent hurricanes remind us that disasters can happen anytime and anywhere. What could happen here? What can we prepare for, individually or collectively?

  • Letters to the Editor 9-15-17

    Pajarito Mountain
    ownership transfer poses unacceptable risk

    Dear Editor,
    Some readers may be aware that the Los Alamos Ski Club is seeking a second new arrangement for Pajarito Mountain. The original proposal was to transfer ownership of the ski area to the county, and a private company would operate it.

    However, that never actually happened, and now the club has voted to transfer ownership directly to this private company. The next step is for the County Council to approve funding for a water pipeline.

    I believe this poses an unacceptable risk that the public will lose access to the mountain.

    This opinion is based on my reading of the ski club’s background memo to members. Quotes are from the memo, which is very helpful in understanding the situation but received very limited circulation.

    I am disappointed that the ski club is making a very significant decision that affects everyone in town but made no apparent effort to seek or incorporate the opinions of the public. We did not learn about this proposal until a concerned club member pointed it out only a few days before the vote.

    The ski club’s board assures us that the public’s interests will be protected. This conclusion is not supported by the evidence.

  • Time to deal with Dodd Frank bill

    The New York Times on an upcoming Treasury Department report on the Dodd-Frank financial oversight bill expected to propose lighter regulation for financial firms other than banks:

    Among the most appalling aspects of the financial collapse nine years ago was that no matter how reckless and predatory big financial institutions had been, they had grown so big and so interconnected that the federal government found itself forced to prop them up to avoid failures that would wreck the economy. The resulting bailouts, which included billions of dollars in bonuses for executives responsible for the fiasco, provoked deep public anger and became a rallying cry for populists on the right and the left.

    To reduce the risks from too-big-to-fail institutions, Congress in 2010 passed the Dodd-Frank financial oversight bill. But ever since, even as the stock market soared, wages stagnated and the victims of predatory lenders continued to struggle, Wall Street’s champions have demanded an end to Dodd-Frank’s regulations.

    Step by step, the Trump administration has made it clear that it is on their side, that Wall Street need have no real concern about Dodd-Frank’s provisions and that the lessons of the financial crisis will be ignored.

  • Letters to the Editor

     Public invited to join in worship, prayer

     

    Dear Editor,

    I call on all Christians to join with me in observing Thursday, Sept. 14, as a day of prayer and fasting, acknowledging that “God loved the world so much that He gave His only Son (Jesus the Messiah) that anyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16 in the Holy Bible, TLB version)

    May Americans believe in Jesus so much that we again trust and obey God’s laws to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. The second most important is similar: Love your neighbor as much as you love yourself. All the other commandments and all the demands of the prophets (in the Bible) stem from these two laws and are fulfilled if you obey them. Keep only these and you will find that you are obeying all the others.” This summary was given by Jesus in Matthew 22:37-40 TLB.