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Opinion

  • War in Ciudád Júarez has brought economic improvement in El Paso. The Júarez drug violence has pushed the city’s famous nightlife north across the border into El Paso. Retail activity has come along.

  • Our county council chambers are emblazoned with a quotation attributed to Thomas Jefferson: “Every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle.”

    During the last two years, I have served as chair of the White Rock Master Plan Implementation Committee. Prior to that, I served on the steering committee that assisted MIC with their master plan study for the White Rock community center.

    However, I write today as a private individual, not as a member of the WRMPIC.

  • Some of us have never found a single dollar bill on the sidewalk. But once in a blue moon a lucky soul in the upper Midwest reaches down into the Ice Age deposits of our country and plucks out a diamond.  

    It doesn’t take much geologic knowledge to recognize a diamond in the rough as an interesting and valuable object.

    Diamonds are the hardest mineral in the Earth, which means they will scratch quartz, window glass and even other hard gems like ruby and emerald.

  • Don’t touch that dial!  Remember how TV announcers used to say that before a commercial break?  

    How many kids today would even know what a dial is?  Before you know it, pushing buttons will be a distant memory, too.

    Things have really changed since I was a kid (you know, back when they first invented electricity).  

    We didn’t have remotes for the TV set.  There were six or seven channels to choose from (we only had that many because we got all the NYC stations) and they were mostly black- and-white.  

  • As one resident of this county whom the council allegedly represents, I hereby request that it cease and desist the bullying of our firefighters. As Councilor Vincent Chiravalle has said, we should pay them according to the fact-finder’s report and implement its recommendations.  

  • While running for office, President Obama promised that if elected, he would get us off OPEC oil within 10 years.  

    Two years are gone and we still don’t have a plan.  In fact, there is some evidence that we’re going in the wrong direction.  In July 2010, we imported 388 million barrels of oil. That’s the single largest import month since President Obama was inaugurated.

  • As I was watching the rodeo parade Saturday morning, one of Jeannette Wallace’s marching supporters came over and spoke to one of the onlookers in a voice obviously meant for everyone, “Stephanie Richard teaches school and has two young children. How could she possibly have time to be a representative?”  

    I thought this kind of sexist campaigning had gone the way of wearing high heels and pearls while sweeping – but, obviously, not in the local Republican party.

  • In July, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that the number of minority-owned businesses increased by 46 percent from 2002 to 2007.

    This is good news. These new businesses are creating jobs and driving local economic growth all across the country.

    However, this is no time to lessen the commitment or resources available to help minority small businesses grow and create jobs.

  • I read the article about the “Attack of the Yarn Bomber” and I wonder if the artist knows her outside works of art could be a death trap for snakes?

    Snakes can get into the knitted yarn but because of their scales, they can become trapped in the yarn and strangle themselves.

    This landscaping and bird netting is similar to the yarn.

  • Before I got cancer, I didn’t even believe in taking vitamins, let alone any “alternate stuff.”

    I mean who needs them if you eat properly. I used to think “Boy, you New Age people are weird.         

    What’s wrong with eating good healthy food, keeping fit and taking whatever the doctor orders?”

    Problem is, while all that conventional cancer medicine is draining out of your system, the wake of destruction it leaves behind does not.

  • In response to the letter from Glenn Walp in the Aug. 13 Monitor: Please stop, Mr. Walp.

    You cloak yourself in the role of a righteous American but the noise I hear is the self-serving bleating of someone eager for the spotlight to promote his new book.

    You previously besmirched thousands of true Americans with your extreme claims of thievery among the LANL workforce. Now you suggest that our terrorist adversaries will obtain the nuclear material to harm the United States from LANL.

  • Legacy. Hank Thoreau wrote that most of us “lead lives of quiet desperation.”  Another writer, William Faulkner, I believe, said that some of us are driven to leave a mark on history.  A “scratch on anonymity,” is how he phrased it, I think.

  • It’s a new school year and students are excited and enthusiastic as always!  Well, okay, maybe not.

  • Sad to say, Russia has it right when it comes to outlining the failed security at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

    The President of the United States has been adequately warned — as have all of Congress ­— about this serious threat against America, yet they remain mute and do nothing.

    And that is Republican, Democrat and Independents.

    This issue is not about politics.

    It is the protection of these United States of America that we love.

  • SANTA FE — August holds no holidays for New Mexicans. Heck, even members of the U.S. House of Representatives have to give up their traditional August recess to work on the ambitious agenda of Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

    But August has many days to remember, especially for New Mexicans. We just don’t celebrate them because they’re all tinged with some bad memories.

    Every elementary school child knows Christopher Columbus arrived in the New World on October 12, 1492. But he set sail on August 3 of that year.

  • SANTA FE — Are New Mexicans getting their money’s worth out of our 112 state legislators? A recent report indicates we may be getting a very good deal indeed.

    The Illinois Policy Institute looked into the range of salaries paid to state legislators across the country and found that the states that pay their lawmakers the most also have the highest budget shortfalls.

    The average budget shortfall for the states with the top 10 salaries is over 30 percent. The average for the bottom 10 states is under 19 percent.

  • With signs and labels all over town and special sections coming with  the Los Alamos Monitor, our whole town is thinking about the start of  the school year.

    Not surprisingly, so are all of us who have worked for and retired from the Los Alamos Schools!  

    On August 19, all retirees are invited to the Annual Retirees Breakfast to be held at the Christian Church of Los Alamos.  Invitations have been sent online and through the mail and the newspaper is running information.   

  • The nation’s outsized deficit is high on the list of domestic problems most in need of a solution.

    From the president’s deficit commission, meeting throughout the year to figure out what to do, to the America Speaks group holding multiple town hall meetings, experts are zeroing in on the skyrocketing deficit number.

    And we keep hearing that cutting Social Security benefits needs to be part of the solution.

    Hold on a second. The budget deficit needs to be tackled, and Social Security needs to be strengthened for the long run.

  • The New Mexico Court of Appeals ruled recently that a certain state employee is entitled to sue the state in district court instead of being restricted to workers’ compensation.

    A friend of mine e-mailed:  “Seems like it unravels the whole (workers’ comp) reform.”

    No, it doesn’t.

    For those who may be alarmed, some explanation:

    First, this case is not that big a deal, except to the parties directly involved.

  • My recent experience with the Department of Motor Vehicles makes me wonder if they even begin to understand service.

    On July 28 I went in the afternoon to renew a car registration. A sign was posted that stated “system down no registration possible.”

    I returned July 29 in both the morning and the afternoon and the sign was still posted.

    Then July 29 I tried to do an online registration and after 15 minutes and answering several recorded questions I again was told by a recorded voice the system was down.