• I am a very fortunate person. I can (and do) give fresh and clean water every day to my children and even my cats and dogs. When we don’t have rain, I can use that same fresh water to keep my vegetable and flower gardens alive. I am lucky to have enough money to buy food for my kids and pets, too. I even have the choice to feed them healthy food or

    unhealthy food on special occasions, knowing that their next meals will fulfill their nutritional needs.

  • Here’s a little quiz: Name the five lieutenant governors before Diane Denish.

    If you can recall Walter Bradley, Casey Luna, Jack Stahl, Mike Runnels and Roberto Mondragon, you get a gold star.

    If you drew a blank, welcome to the club. The fact that none of them went on to higher office and some disappeared from the political radar tells you something about the office.

  • Dogs pant with their tongues hanging out, young men sweat by the bucket and aging geologists just fall over on our faces in the shade on a hot summer’s day. But is there a way we could choose to cool the whole planet in a few decades if we really need to?

  • Those who love football as well as civil society, like me, face a chilling ambivalence about a sport that has become not only a stand-in for war (although we still have the real thing going on), but also a huge business that commands, in the corporate world of college education, expenditures seldom lavished on non-athletes.

    Football as a game has not only become “war;” it is also big business that deals in millions of dollars and the euphoria (or depression) of thousands of people, depending on winning or losing.

  • You’re driving up the Front Road and right behind you is a very important person ... a VIP. Right behind you.

    You know the type.  There are five cars in front of you and you can’t go any faster, but the VIP just has to pass you since, well, he’s very important.  And so, he tailgates you and once he’s given a three-second window to pass, off he goes, rushing to his very important meeting with other very important people, or “I.”

    Now, if he could only pass those other five not-as-important people ...

  • On Oct. 14 in the afternoon between 1 and 3:30 p.m. the sandwich board sign out in front of my new business (Karen Wray Fine Art-Gallery and Studio at 2101 Trinity Drive, Suite B-2) was stolen. The sandwich board was not small. It is 36 inches high by 24 inches wide, made of white plastic with attached signs stating “Gallery / Open” in black print on yellow corrugated plastic. Earlier, on Sept. 11, this sign was outside with 10 balloons attached to the top, announcing the Arts Crawl that was taking place that evening.

  • Over 50 people came to Ashley Pond on Oct. 24 to observe the 64th birthday of the United Nations, and to participate in the International Call for Climate Action.

    Los Alamos was well represented along with over 5000 communities in 181 nations on this day of action, calling upon the participants in the December UN talks in Copenhagen, Denmark to establish 350 parts per million of carbon dioxide as the safe upper limit for our atmosphere.

  • I’m having withdrawal symptoms. Celebrity withdrawal. People have stopped recognizing me in the street! So, sorry folks, I had to come up with a lame excuse to write about hair, just so that I could change my photo.

    So, in this season of being thankful, I’m thanking my hair for growing back to a style I’m happy with. It’s taken 16 months to go from zero to what you see in my new photo.

  • This intangible thing we call freedom is interpreted differently by just about every individual, but one aspect that’s not open for debate is that we enjoy freedom because of the sacrifices made by countless veterans of our armed forces. We must never question that freedom is worth fighting for.

    The men and women of this country’s military have always exemplified valor, courage and bravery. The sacrifices they’ve made down through the years allow us all to revel in the freedom we have today.

  • From U.S. Sen. Jeff Bingaman’s remarks for Veteran’s Day 2009

  •     I’m thinking of building a new house. I own this wonderful lot, but, alas, like many, I always think the “grass is greener” across the street. That lot isn’t mine, but I lust for it even though many folks tell me they think it is inferior to the lot I already own.

  • This letter is intended for Los Alamos National Laboratory retirees and current LANL employees living in Bernalillo, Sandoval, Torrance or Valencia counties.

    If you are seeing a doctor who belongs exclusively to the Presbyterian Health Group (including Presbyterian Hospital), you should check to see if insurance benefits are available to you under the new LANL healthcare insurance plan provided through Blue Cross Blue Shield New Mexico as you may not be entitled to benefits from BCBSNM.

  • Last week the Republican Party released its health care reform bill, and it is safe to say that this proposal for health care reform was a failure. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), this plan only covers 3 million additional Americans and would leave more than 50 million uninsured in 2019. And for the people who have insurance, most would only receive a 3 percent decrease in premiums, if any. Finally, the GOP plan does not end the practice of refusing coverage to those with pre-existing conditions and does not stop insurers from denying coverage to those who are sick.

  • Many recent studies show that formerly southern birds, butterflies, etc., are moving north, and people are able to plant crops farther north. White Rock now is home to a southern desert-dwelling bird, the Curve-Billed Thrasher, and Southern White-Winged Doves have invaded even the town site. All these effects are presumably due to global warming.

  •   On Oct. 6, the Los Alamos County Council announced that an agreement with the Los Alamos Public School District had been reached regarding lease of structures for the schools’ maintenance facilities at the county-owned Airport Basin Site (north of DeColores Restaurant on N.M. 502) and the lease of school-owned land to the county for future revenue from the redevelopment of the Trinity Site.

  • When they asked for an updated economic development strategy this week, Los Alamos County Council "opened up a whole box of Pandora's," as former New Mexico Governor Bruce King might have said,

  • As I follow the outrageous rumors and disturbing behavior surrounding health care reform, I am reminded of an earlier health crisis in this country. The outbreak of the AIDS virus in the 1980s created similar behavior among those who listened to the fear-mongers exploiting the crisis to advance their political and ideological agendas.

  • Time flies like an arrow, but fruit flies like a banana. A play on words? A play about words? May I have a word with you about your play? It doesn’t matter if you hear what I say. It only matters if you hear that I said what you may or may not have heard. Understand? No? Good!

  • We have become a nation that refuses to dirty its hands. We let people in other countries do our manufacturing. We use underpaid immigrants or rent people from other countries to do our manual labor.

    We did not learn the lesson of the Revolutionary War. Citizens who owned and worked their own land or produced the goods consumed in this country triumphed over an absentee ruling class.

  • When will we be notified who are the various providers for Los Almos National Laboratory’s Blue Cross Blue Shield NM health plan in CY2010? The providers listed on their website are for CY2009 and several local providers have indicated they will not participate in LANL’s BCBS insurance plans in 2010.  This is essential information we need to have prior to completing open enrollment and BCBS seems to be intent on misleading us by refusing to publish the 2010 list of providers.

    Dave Thomson

    Los Alamos