• Dear Editor,

    An article Sunday highlighted a group that wishes to amend the county charter to require a referendum for every capital project exceeding $1 million, and to simplify the petition process. This group feels that there is not enough citizen involvement in county government, which I find astonishing.

  • Some folks like to spend a lot of their time going over-time to find anything – and everything – that is wrong with America. And while it is true, there are issues and concerns that we as a people and nation have and must deal with, a very solid case can be made that this is truly the best place there is to live.

    When we have troubles – be it with the government, our leaders or our laws – we deal with them. We don’t bury our heads and pretend those problems don’t exist.

  • Gov. Richardson described last Tuesday’s Isotopes game featuring Manny Ramirez as one of the most important events in New Mexico history.

    Really? So much for the Manhattan Project and Roswell in 1947.

    But in a way it was hard to argue with him. There was a record crowd of more than 15,000 people there at Isotopes Park. And before the three days were up, more than 45,000 people showed up at the park.

  • Amanda called out to her husband, “Honey, come take a look at it.  It’s gotten a little bigger.”  

    Jeff walked into the room as his wife gently poked the growth hanging off her body and asked her, “So, how much does it weigh today?”   Amanda poked it again and said, “Just over 80 pounds.  What do you think?  Should I have a doctor take a look at it?”  

    Jeff replied, “Naw, let’s see if it hits 100 pounds first.  So, what do you want to do for dinner?”

  • Dear Editor,

    New Mexico youth who will be junior and senior high-schoolers this fall are invited to register for and participate in the Next Big Idea STEM Student Day on Friday, July 17, in Los Alamos from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. The all-day event is being organized by Los Alamos MainStreet in partnership with the Chamber of Commerce, Los Alamos National Laboratory, and Innovate-Educate New Mexico.

  • Dear Editor,

    I would like to compliment Carol Clark on her objective reporting on the Art Center at Fuller Lodge board and the resignation of the chairman. As a board member, I feel I need to respond to several quotes taken from her articles. 

    I became a board member last year to serve an organization that I have been involved with, and believed in, for half of my life. I joined in order to help promote the Art Center and its mission. Although I have learned much this year, the experience has not been enjoyable.

  • Recruiting top-drawer employees does’t stop just because hiring slows or freezes.

    The recession, however bad, isn’t permanent, and forward-looking executives realize that the most ambitious and productive workers – the ones they hope to attract – remain alert to opportunities from companies that market themselves vigorously and confidently no matter what the economic climate.

    The following are some trends that will affect hiring as the economy rebounds:

  • Defeating the Taliban and al-Qaida is only one part of the struggle to build peace in Pakistan. Humanitarian aid for over two million people who have been displaced by the fighting is equally critical to building stability in the troubled country.

    Pakistan’s prime minister says the militants will be defeated, but public support will be lost if the refugees suffer. What’s at stake is not just a battle for territory, but an effort to win Pakistanis over to the side of the United States and away from the Taliban and al-Qaida.

  • Thomas Jefferson had so many serious interests and accomplishments that’s it’s difficult to name even half of them. Besides helping to found a nation, he analyzed the gospels, started a university, promoted fine dining and bought half our continent from the French.

    He also squeezed in a few hours now and then to theorize about the origin of some peculiar bones dug out of the earth. (That bit of work made him a cousin to all of us geologists – or so I like to think.)




    Syndicated Columnist

    SANTA FE -- The pen is mightier than the sword. The adage has been used for decades, especially by journalists. It makes us feel good. But does anyone believe it? Certainly today's warmongers don't.

    Evidently President Barack Obama doesn't, either. Midshipmen at the U.S. Naval Academy have been told to leave their swords at home for graduation ceremonies at which Obama will speak. But cell phones and texting will be allowed.

  • FRIED LIGHT: The tale of the tape

    I recently finished listening to a 48-tape history of the Roman Republic and Empire.

    Since I spend a good part of my day reading news and documents, non-fiction for some reason is harder for me to read as a recreational pursuit, unless I become obsessed with a whole subject for a time, in which case I dive into several books at once.

    When the recession/depression struck, I was inexplicably compelled to read about the Renaissance, maybe because subconsciously I was trying to get a tip on a happy ending.

  • Friday night at the ski hill was another in the series of summer concerts put on by the county and various businesses in the community.

    People gather to relax, meet with friends and listen to some great music. Friday night was no different.

    The night air at Pajarito was cool and crisp and the music rocking.  All was well.

    Until the state police decided to make an appearance and clearly demonstrate that we have lost our collective minds.

  • By Dr. E. Kirsten Peters

    These are the longest days of the year, with the sun higher in the sky than at any other time. Like many people living in the northern strip of the country, I used to spend a good bit of time worshipping the sun each June. I didn’t use any sunscreen because I found that after a few days outdoors, my exposed parts were red-brown – and my chronic joint pains were cut in half.

  • While billion-dollar swindles like Bernard Madoff’s make the national news, most investment fraud is a local crime committed close to home.  In most cases, the victims are friends, business acquaintances and relatives of the perpetrator.

    Such was the case with Henry Rivera, a Taos con artist who scammed more than 50 New Mexicans out of millions of dollars before he was indicted on more than two dozen counts of securities fraud in 1994.

  • During the 2009 legislative session, New Mexico policymakers faced some of the most challenging budgetary times in recent memory. That fact led to reductions of approximately $450 million to the General Fund from about $6 billion to just over $5.5 billion.

  • Ken was a close friend. Like us, he was an (earlier) graduate of the Bronx High School of Science, and we had similar interests. Because we were out of town, we were unable to attend his memorial service. Had we been there, we would have shown the attached photograph, from one of the many UFO conferences to which we had taken Ken. For your information, Ken is the individual on the left (we think).

  • Dear Editor,

    The council made the right decision, given the current financial crisis, not to raise our sewer rates at this time.  Salary raises are delayed, property taxes are higher, and many empty homes are waiting for better times. Our utilities, however, face a predicament. The White Rock sewage plant needs replacement. The utilities customer base is small and is unlikely to expand soon, and, in addition, we are using less water because of already high prices. Under these circumstances sewer rates must eventually rise.

  • Dear Editor,

    It was with great sadness we read your June 9 article “L.A. police cadet charged with DWI.” It is unfortunate that cadet Daniel LaDuke made the serious mistake of driving while under the influence. While we don’t condone this lapse of judgment, we feel your readers should know a little about the Dan LaDuke we knew when he was a councilor at the YMCA after-school program (which our son attends) immediately prior to joining the Los Alamos Police Department.

  • Well, it’s official. New Mexico’s multimillion-dollar spaceport is moving ahead toward construction in the southern desert, a big step for commercial space development and tourists who will suit up for $200,000 suborbital flights.

    Put me down for one of those. What a bargain.

    Of course, this belies the fact that the high price of a ticket killed the Concord. But we’re sure that there will be hundreds of folks ready to put down a couple of hundred grand to liftoff.

  • The council’s action in granting some staff a bonus - or pay allowance or what you want to call it - is cause for pause.

    This seems to us to be the wrong solution to the problem and we have to agree with Robert Gibson who voted against the idea.

    Even the chair, Michael Wheeler, is quoted in voicing concerns, altough he voted for the plan.

    As best as we can understand this, it seems that when the council approved its recent budget it did so failing to take into account a group of employees who have hit the top of their pay scale and can’t get a raise.