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Opinion

  • SANTA FE — Gov. Bill Richardson still has Billy the Kid on his mind. This time, instead of trying to dig him up, he’s wanting to pardon him for his sins.

    The governor invited me to his office a few months ago to ask if I would help him gauge public opinion, especially among the Billy community, about his project.

  • Friday (June 18) the Monitor underscored the problems of economics going forward we face.

    The Hannemann/Holsapple debate will, I suspect go on about how well business development happens here.

    But the lead story about our station, KRSN, still having antenna placement problems, shows the difficulties that many here, including myself, see as over commitment to code and under commitment to community needs.

  • I opened Thursday’s Monitor and read where the LAPS administration is getting comfortable in its new nest. Was I surprised to find out that the nest is a “building from owner Elmo C de Baca with the intent to buy it.”

    More taxable property out of the tax bucket. Silly me; I thought my tax dollars had just been spent to provide them with spanking new pads in upscale “Pajarito Cliffs.” Oh, those digs are just for the worker bees; not the higher ups.

  • British Petroleum is denying our media access to some of the areas affected by the Deep Water Horizon oil rig disaster. It has also violated OSHA regulations designed to protect cleanup workers’ health and safety.

    BP refuses to issue respirators to cleanup workers, who are being sickened and hospitalized for exposure to toxic fumes from oil and from a chemical dispersant, banned in other countries, which is being used in defiance of an EPA order. Training time for these workers is less than that required by OSHA regulations.

  • When Barney heard New Mexico’s next governor will either be Democrat Diane Denish or Republican Susana Martinez, he was elated.

    “That’s great,” gushed my friend from New Jersey in a phone call last week. “I know I’ve poked a lot of fun at your hick state over the years, but your future is on track with a female governor.”

  • When the British Petroleum oil rig exploded in April and sank to the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico taking with it the lives of 11 workers, the wave of popularity that swept President Barack Obama into office just 15 months earlier ebbed. With his administration clearly sinking under the weight of its own ineptitude and inaction, it’s as though the oil rig and Obama’s presidency were inextricably tied together.

  • On the Navajo Reservation, you sometimes hear this comment: “They live so far out, not even the census takers can find them.” This is said with a bit of pride. Sometimes, envy.

  • The Monitor’s practice of giving space to Richard Hannemann’s critical harangues is tiresome but would be much more tolerable if it did not support publication of misinformation and mischaracterization of the positions and activities of others in the community. I want to point out that I am a recent victim. The aims and activities attributed by Hannemann to me and LACDC in his recent article on the editorial page are not mine.

  • Back in the late 1800s, some marketing genius discovered that glass wasn’t the only transparent thing made by man. He noticed that the number nine was also transparent, in fact virtually invisible, and hence was born the trailing invisible nines. I’m talking about the ubiquitous nines thrown at us in one of the most nefarious pricing strategies ever conceived.

    A gallon of milk costs $2.99.  A roasted chicken costs $5.99. A pound of Vermont apple smoked bacon runs $12.99.  Ah ha, you didn’t even see those nines, did you?

  • Mostly we see the day-to-day. The long-term isn’t noticed. Once in a while, though, changes grab our attention. Our children, toddlers just yesterday, get married. The lovely olive colored dishwasher from the ’70s now is ridiculed.

    Our economy is the same way. Unbeknownst to those of us buried in the day-to-day, from 2000 to 2008, some interesting and unreported things happened around New Mexico. The observation comes from annual per capita income figures for counties released in April by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

  • The conventional wisdom has it that we, the American people, are angry, frustrated, fed up and that we aren’t going to take it anymore.

    “Down with the rascals!”

    “Off with their heads!”

    “Out with the bums!”

    Who knows? Once in a while the conventional wisdom turns out to be on target.

  • From the Monitor June 13:  Kevin Holsapple, “... Trinity (Place) is to anchor a share of the shopper traffic in our community that currently flees to other communities.  Increased shopper traffic in the downtown can provide increased opportunity for other businesses.”  

  • To me, there’s nothing like a breakfast that involves an egg. That dose of protein, I think, helps me last at work until noon or even beyond the lunch hour if need be.

    Like me, you probably often have a dozen eggs on your grocery list. And when you wake up bleary-eyed on a Saturday morning, you face the choice of how you will buy those eggs.

  • Creating shallow tar pits at known illegal border crossings may make the proverbial “wheels to spin” for drug and gun traffickers.

    Bird poop on your car is less good than guano mining.  Potentates are impotent because they are approaching the oil spill like car wash kids.

    They need to create a demand for the sludge. Pothole fixers benefit us more than blamers and feasibility studiers.  

    Petr Jandacek

    Los Alamos

  • Several alarming things are happening in our country.  As we go about our daily work, Congress continues spending money that we don’t have.

  • For many of us, sleeping every night in a safe and comfortable home is something we take for granted — but that’s not the case for all families. However, for those families there are opportunities to buy a house to call home — even in these trying economic times.

    Several Federal agencies have proclaimed June National Homeownership Month. This month we recognize the role homeownership plays as the foundation of America’s economy and how it provides stability in our communities.

  • SANTA FE — “If I’m elected governor, I’ll fire every single political appointee.” Sound familiar? You’ve likely heard that promise from every single gubernatorial candidate for almost a year.

    We’re down to only two candidates now and this is one campaign promise you can expect either of them to keep. Governors always do. They want their own trusted individuals around them, not the former governor’s buddies.

  • SANTA FE — Last week a truly amazing event occurred in the world of sports. Detroit’s Armando Galarraga pitched a perfect game. He threw to the minimum 27 hitters and didn’t let anyone get to first base. It had only happened 20 times previously in the 134-year history of Major League Baseball.

    There was only one catch. Umpire Jim Joyce called the final batter safe at first. Baseball doesn’t have instant replay as pro football and basketball do, so the decision stood.

  • The Trinity Place development project is moving into a new, more public phase in the coming months.  Since Los Alamos County terminated its exclusive developer arrangement with the Boyer Company last fall, many people have assumed that the project was “dead” or that work on the project had ceased. 

    That has not been the case, although the difficulties being experienced throughout the U.S. economy have made for slow going over the winter.

  • When Fire Chief Douglass MacDonald came to Los Alamos in December 1992 what he noticed first was the dangerous wilderness/urban interface that surrounded the Hill.  Having come from a wildlands fire background, he decided to work to mitigate the imminent danger posed by the overcrowded forest.

    In 1994, Los Alamos held an Interagency Fire Symposium. In 1995, the U.S. Forest Service attempted a controlled burn around Western Area, but the community wasn’t ready.  People complained about the smoke and cutting down trees.