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Opinion

  • Newspapers were guardians of our Republic. Now most have moved left, supporting our country’s slide into socialism or worse. I never thought of the Monitor as a zampolit for Marxism. So, I found the political cartoon that you published on April 18, “Tea Party: White Tea Blend,” which shows a KKK tea bag, vile and offensive, but telling.

    To disagree with the Left is to be called a “racist.” Such “politically incorrect” free speech is handled via today’s state media through character assassination, not facts.

  • The good citizens of Iceland have two mega-problems this spring. One is their economic and banking situation, which is still in something close to meltdown mode. I cannot fathom finances and economics, so I’m in no position to really follow that part of the current and dreary Icelandic saga.

    But the other is geological, and that’s a piece of the story a rock-head like me can better understand.

  • We’ve been railroaded! The New Mexico Rail Runner may be the biggest boondoggle ever dumped on state taxpayers — and that includes people in Los Alamos and every other town 20 or more miles away from I-25 between Belen and Santa Fe. This train is an ill-conceived, unnecessary “mass transit” system that serves a tiny fraction of the state’s population for an obscenely high price. We need to stop this train in its tracks!

  • There was a homeowner who wanted to rid his house of roaches.  A friend suggested using an aerosol spray called a “roach bomb.” You put the can in a room and turn it on (activating a continuous spray), exit the room, and let the fumes seek out and bomb the little critters.  The homeowner thought it over ... if one bomb per room is good, several bombs per room is better!  He bought a couple cases of roach bombs, set off several aerosols in each room, and ran out of the house.

  • New Mexico received more bad news recently with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report that the state lost 2,200 jobs between February and March, while 33 other states and the District of Columbia added jobs.

    While I can’t speak to how the other states are improving, one thing is certain — New Mexico is at a distinct disadvantage with its tax policies and recent package of tax increases passed by the legislature.

  • SANTA FE — A new trend has emerged in political campaign financing. It’s called doing it yourself. Digging into your own pocket. Needless to say, it helps if those pockets are deep.

    A basic rule of politics is that if you can’t raise money, you won’t be any good at rounding up votes either. But in an era when the rich are getting richer, many candidates are finding it possible to dig deep enough to find sufficient money for a victory.

  • In your interview of Gary Ahlers, candidate for Magistrate Judge, published Sunday April 25, Mr. Ahlers is quoted as saying that I, George Chandler,  “tried to use these records he found online to ruin my reputation” during the 2006 election campaign.  He then goes on to suggest it is ridiculous to bring up something that happened 15 years ago.

  • Thank you for your editorial about blogs. Many blogs are valuable and useful. However, I believe the large number of anonymous posts on blogs are problematic at best.  

    After considerable thought, I have decided that, as a candidate, I will not respond to anonymous questions or participate in blogs dominated by anonymous posts.  

    At times there is some value in anonymous posting (e.g. protection of whistleblowers), but too many anonymous postings are hypercritical,  malicious and/or vicious.  

  • A recent letter regarding a cartoon about the Tea Party movement described the  cartoon as offensive and implied that the Monitor is a Marxist, and/or socialist rag. Political cartoons should make people think about views that they may oppose. Community newspapers publishing political cartoons should not cater to a specific or “safe” audience. This type of catering is what many blog/Web site/TV networks do today. If a reader is conservative or progressive they can find a blog/Web site/TV network that caters to them.

  • SANTA FE — Will this winter weather never end? Jeanette and I have been traveling even more than usual this spring to escape the cold and pollen. We’ve visited much of the desert Southwest plus our most southwestern state of Hawaii.

    It has been cold everywhere. There’s no escaping it. The global cooling fans are ecstatic; claiming this proves global warming is a bunch of hooey. It really doesn’t prove anything other than we had a cold, wet winter.

  • In the April 20, 2010 Monitor, the Sierra Club’s Mark Jones writes that renewed interest in uranium mining will benefit local economies but at a severe price.  He enumerates a list of the health effects, the tardiness of uranium tailings remediation, the modeling of exposure to residual uranium tailings as a predictor of diabetes and kidney disease, groundwater contamination and the burden to the taxpayer. He then turns to the coal companies to criticize mine safety.

  • The last time I went to Nevada, I stood on the edge of an enormous open-pit mine at noon. The whistle blew. Then the pit erupted in explosive power enough to make the Earth rumble.

    “I always like to watch it,” said the geologist giving me the tour. “It looks like the rocks down there just get ‘fluffy’ when they are blasted apart.”

  • I do hope many of you read a recent article in our Essence about the fun of shopping for and eating foods grown locally. Our local Farmers Market has its own long and interesting history. In fact, our own Los Alamos Farmers Market is the oldest continuous farmers market in our state.

  • New Mexicans and Alaskans share a love for the natural beauty of their states and a commitment to care for the land.

    Most of us want to develop land properly and know the value of conserving.

    Since the first Earth Day 40 years ago, we realized that treasured public lands need good management if they are to survive for future generations.

    We’ve learned that communities and individuals have a responsibility to each other to share and take care of the land.

  • SANTA FE — If you would like to know the inside story of the presidential campaign that put Barack Obama in the White House, “Game Change” has all the details.

    Written by two of the country’s leading political reporters, John Heilemann of New York magazine and Mark Halperin of Time magazine, the book provides the scoop on what had to be the race of a lifetime.

  • Some years ago, several co-workers and I decided to have a little get-together after work to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. It was late April and we put up notices to inform the rest of the department, giving the time and place. My office mate, Gary, was a genius when it came to database design and network optimization.  Sadly, that was about the extent of Gary’s analytical capabilities. He asked me, “Sounds like fun. So what day is this party?”

  • There’s a noxious odor swirling around a proposed ordinance now pending county council approval. Ordinance No. 555 would give the electorate the opportunity to vote thumb’s up or down on a charter amendment that calls for an annual election on all capital projects of $1 million or more.

  • Meeting organizers explained that they didn’t intend to debate health care reform.

    “We’re here to discover how New Mexico can get the maximum benefit,” said Dick Mason, of Health Action New Mexico, a nonprofit, consumer advocacy group.

    Amen to that, I thought. That declaration and the meeting venue – a church sanctuary – were effective. No shouting, no posturing. A large, diverse, polite crowd really did want to learn how the new law was going to work. I wanted to know how it would affect New Mexico.

  • In 40 years here I’ve never been as impressed with a student performance as I was with the Olions’ staged musical of “The Wiz,” a lovable and laughable take-off on “The Wizard of Oz.”

    Offering drama classes at both mid- and high schools during the past 20 years has developed enthusiasm and real talent for an activity once given little respect among students.

    Athletic teams are still fairly well subsidized but these kids who have a passion for theater must operate on a shoestring.

  • Throughout the Obama administration, the Republican Caucus has been behaving like a cross between  “Bridezilla” and “The Runaway Bride.”

    During the drafting of almost all legislation in the last 14 months, Republicans have been throwing one tantrum after another, insisting that everything be written according to their own specifications.

    Once everyone is at the altar and it’s time for them to say “I do,” they scream and run away.