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Opinion

  • We’d like to compliment most heartily all the Utilities Department personnel who worked in absolutely lousy and rotten weather Dec. 8 to restore power to Barranca Mesa.

    One of the easiest things to do is complain when things don’t work well. While we might “complain” that the power went down, we certainly cannot complain about the relatively short time for the power to come back up and we know this was due to our Los Alamos County Utility Personnel. Well done and thank you!

    Tom and Bev Keenan

    Los Alamos

  • Braving the chill during that cold spell early this month, a few tennis players cleared the trash along

    NM 502 at the airport as a show of their appreciation for the county’s support of tennis facilities. Those participating were John Bartlit, Shuh-Rong Chen, Cathy and Jerry Morzinski, Bob Nolen and me. David Archuleta of the traffic division supplied the signs and safety vests through a request by the Parks division to Nancy Talley. Thank you councilors and staff!

    Joel M Williams

    Los Alamos

  • SANTA FE — Everyone will be affected by the next round of state budget balancing.

    Thus far, lawmakers have been able to fill budgetary voids by sweeping money out of the cubby holes of state government and cutting back on agency spending.

    But next time the pain will be felt almost everywhere. The easy cuts have been made. Further cuts will affect services. Some of those services are not really noticed.

  • SANTA FE – Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson is in the national news again. He has launched a nationwide nonprofit campaign to advocate libertarian views on current issues.

    The campaign includes a Web site, www.ouramericainitiative.com, containing written statements and film clips of Johnson explaining his positions on the economy, drugs, civil liberties, the environment, abortion, the Federal Reserve, taxes and defense.

  • SANTA FE ­— Government efficiency is currently the major focus in Santa Fe. Maybe it was the stern warning from legislative leaders that tax hikes are not inevitable as Gov. Bill Richardson has suggested.

    The spotlight on tax increases certainly will return as the Budget Balancing Task Force makes its report to the governor.

  • SANTA FE — Merry  Christmas. I hope saying that doesn’t ruin somebody’s day. I realize not all of you are Christians but ours is a diverse society. We should all be willing to appreciate each other’s traditions.    

    A Jewish congregation down the street places a large menorah on its fence, this time of year, which I always appreciate. Apparently the rest of the neighbors do too because it goes back up every year.

  • If you look in the habitat of print journalists, you won’t find many with any fashion sense. In fact, if you could see our closets, you’d probably laugh. One reporter I knew thought hiking boots, jeans and a flannel shirt constituted professional attire – and this was a woman.

    So that’s why Gilbert Gallegos stood out from the crowd. It’s not that he was a flashy dresser, but in a newsroom of the, uh, stylishly challenged he stood out in his khakis, pressed white shirt and tie.

  • Not every kid is worried about how Kris Kringle can go to so many houses in the world, all in one night.

    Unlike you, Antonia, my curious young friend, those kids will probably not be reading this column.

    But since you asked, I have looked into the question for the most current and credible peer-reviewed description and here’s what I found.

    The best explanation of Santa’s technological powers came this year from Larry Silverberg, a real-life professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at North Carolina State University.

  • This week we take a break from politics, pay-to-play and pocketbook issues to celebrate all things New Mexican. With a tip of the hat to comedian Jeff Foxworthy ...

    If your good jeans are the ones you wear to church, funerals or the Santa Fe Opera, you must be a New Mexican.

    If linguists, anthropologists and historians appear at the door to visit with grandpa or grandma, you must be a New Mexican.

    If you’ve ever voted for a politician named Jack Daniels, Johnnie Walker or Jose Cuervo, you’re definitely a New Mexican.

  • I used to have the utmost respect for our local police department and considered their efforts to be outstanding but no more. My 18-year-old granddaughter was carelessly pulling her boy friend’s car from in front of our house and an oncoming car hit the front end. Three police personnel just happened to be nearby and investigated immediately.

  • I am extremely disappointed with the recent job elimination action by the 3M Corporation in Los Alamos. Only eight weeks ago, a 3M company officer spoke to the assembled workers at Imtec’s HYTEC Technology Center in Los Alamos. He told us, your jobs are safe; your job may change, but you will have a job. Eight weeks later there was a different plan and no satisfactory explanation for the job cuts by the 3M Corporation. Twelve positions were eliminated, without warning, on Dec. 7.

  • The Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce (GACC) proposed last month that New Mexico reimpose the tax on food. The food tax issue has not gone away, but a wiser strategy would be a targeted tax on junk food, rather than making necessities like fruits, vegetables and baby food more expensive for New Mexico families.

  • One week the White House announces an Open Government Initiative. The next week the National Nuclear Security Administration slams the lid down on a vital piece of information that has been shared with the public in the past.

    That probably isn’t the way it was meant to play out, but that’s the way it felt.

    Here’s what happened:

    Like most other newspapers and citizens everywhere we have been led to expect a new era of openness in the federal government.

  • There’s hardly a town in New Mexico that isn’t affected by tourism, even if visitors are just passing through. And this was not a good year.

    If you can agree with those two statements, maybe you can agree that there is such a thing as a good tax. I would define a good tax as one with a specific, desirable goal that takes a small bite and inflicts minimal pain.

    The tourism folks are hoping lawmakers see their proposal that way.

  • This is an interesting time of the year. Snowfalls paint a wonderful texture on the sagebrush, and the distant mountains become picturesque with their candle-dripped white caps. The mesas glimmer in the sunlight with their earth tone colors sporting ice floes. The entire landscape seems to yell out like a George Henry Durrie painting.

  • At the dedication ceremony for the Municipal Building, June 24, 1967, County Administrator Paul Noland said, “This building symbolizes Los Alamos as a normal New Mexico town and a normal New Mexico county.” My how things have changed. Now we have a “vision” statement that “Los Alamos and the lab are inseparable.” Not exactly a normal town or normal county. Not exactly the vision that Los Alamos had for itself 40 years ago.  Not exactly what was envisioned by the people who fought to establish a separate and independent Los Alamos County.

  • On behalf of the Los Alamos High School Science Department, we want to thank the Los Alamos community for their overwhelming generosity to a person who is very special to us. We hosted a fundraiser for fellow science teacher, Dave Thurston, who is battling leukemia and in need of financial assistance because his health insurance does not cover all the costs associated with his treatment.

  • Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) was the first senator to offer a successful amendment to the big Senate health-care overhaul bill now being debated in Washington, D.C. It was a perfect lesson in what’s wrong with the political mentality.

    According to Mikulski’s news release, the amendment would “guarantee women access to preventive health care screenings and care at no cost ... [by requiring] all health plans to cover comprehensive women’s preventive care ... with no copayments.”

  • Yes, it’s that time of year again. It’s the holidays and ’tis the season to be stressed. Crowded malls, last minute shopping, endless lines, 200 cards to write ... what? You mean I’m the only one who does that? Bummer. No wonder I don’t get many back.

  • The Los Alamos County council certainly talks-the-talk when it comes to supporting local businesses, but they and the county departments fail to walk-the-walk. In at least two current situations, Pet Pangaea and KRSN 1490 radio, this lack of support borders on active obstructiveness.