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Opinion
Eviction compromises political conviction
Sitting in the shade of a sycamore tree on a hot, breezy summer afternoon with a good book is one of my pleasures of summer. As I settled in for a quiet conversation and debate with Confucius, I was interrupted by my friend Max. With a cold beer in hand and frustration, anxiety and anger in his eyes, he sat on the lawn. With a deep sigh and a loud grunt he said, “I’m two months behind on my rent and I was just evicted from my house.” I’ve know...
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In Defense of the Nerds
“One man’s ‘magic’ is another man’s engineering. ‘Supernatural’ is a null word.” – Robert A. Heinlein Their “progress reports” are vivid artist renderings of scantily clad, anatomically “perfect” women, mythical creatures and dinosaurs. Their attendees arrive in often elaborate costumes, often including face and body paint. Their latest dance crazes are of the Renaissance Fair nature. They are science fiction nerds and damn proud of it. More t...
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Where have all the school years gone?
As school bells around our area harken the start of the new traditional public school year, so also the University of Nevada, Reno, is starting its new school year with many new freshmen who are at once happy, scared, excited and optimistic about their futures. I felt much the same way when I started my freshman year at the university in the fall of 1964. That was a mere 47 years ago, but it seems somehow like it was only yesterday. I guess ti...
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A friendly reminder
Washoe County School District students and teachers return to the classroom tomorrow, which means I have spent the last week focusing on issues related to education.
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Blonde bombshell
The concept of civil discourse has become just on more vaguely Victorian principle that seems naïve and unreal when viewed from these socially devolved times.
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If you can’t win, be spectacular
Race driver Eddie Sachs (1927-1964) died in the most spectacular disaster in the history of the Indianapolis 500 and probably in the entirety of motorsports.
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Newspaper nostalgia
It was an otherwise quiet Monday at the Tribune this week until we had a visitor in the early afternoon.
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Marx damned with faint praise
The best part of this book is the title. After that it’s mostly downhill, descending into a spectacularly bad book.
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I want to TiVo campaign season
Are you as fed up as I am with all the campaigning for the special election in the 2nd Congressional District? Are you nauseated by all the I-Know-You-Are-But-What-Am-I campaign ads? Give me an ever-loving break. The worst is that we haven’t even begun to hit the real campaign season that will be upon us all too soon: the 2012 presidential. Batten down the hatches, that is going to be ad campaign overload for sure. The current campaign hasn’t ...
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‘Let’s Kill Ourselves, Maybe Someone Else’
Law enforcement personnel in northern Nevada last week launched the annual “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign, in which officers will be cracking down on motorists who are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. The campaign is aimed at keeping people from drinking and driving during the Labor Day weekend, a time of year when many people are out and about at parties. The Reno and Sparks police departments, Washoe County Sheriff’s Offic...
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Schmitt swept away by partisan politics
Three members of the Sparks City Council must be tea pot Republicans. Councilmen Mike Carrigan, Ron Smith and Ron Schmitt recently turned down a one-time $238,241 grant from the federal government to purchase a new street sweeper. Currently, the city has five sweepers. One of them needs replacing due to the high cost of constant repairs, and acquiring a replacement would have saved the city money at no cost to the residents of Sparks. A few mo...
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Blood-Sucking Banks
My student loan payments are killing me — and I’m not speaking in a figurative manner. Were it not for my parents sending me money fairly often and my brother letting me live in his basement, I’d actually starve to death. I’ve got about $70,000 worth of student loans —some of them federal and some private — because it took me a long time to get through school while working full-time to make ends meet. During almost all the years I was in colle...
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Suicide via Laborcide in Carolina
Say what? Unions nationwide are inflamed over the Democratic National Convention scheduled next year for Charlotte, North Carolina, where setup and takedown may not be union jobs. The Paradise (Township) Democratic Club in Clark County recently passed a sharply worded resolution demanding that the DNC insist on union labor. The movement is tired of being an ATM machine for Democrats, then, like a cuddly toy, getting “left out in the rain the d...
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School ain’t education
The audible sighs of relief are heard throughout the town as the summer vacation for kids comes to an end, and the government will once more take over the task of child rearing from their frustrated parents. Family life can now return to the daily drudgery of two jobs, daily commuting and the important things, like video games and the Internet adventures of texting with strangers. From here on through the dark months, the raising and teaching ...
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NFL players put their bodies at risk
National Football League players, although millionaires, need a union every bit as much as ordinary working people do. The players are employees. They are property. They are replaceable. The owners are their bosses. The NFL union fights against their crass capitalism. It insisted that the owners drop their greedy and callous demand for an 18-game regular season rather than 16. The players and union won. The game is all about the players. The o...
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And now what might be the news
News, by definition, is something new that is happening in the world. With the advent of instant access to news via the Internet and mobile technology, the news has to be even newer since people get their information almost instantly. Somewhere along the line in my career, I learned that it is better to get a story right than to get it fast. But in today’s business, I wonder if that is still true. Last week, there was a large fire in Douglas C...
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The Baseball of Politics
I inherited my love for baseball from my father and my passion for politics from my grandfather. My mom tells me that the better part of my childhood was spent with my father at Fenway Park in Boston watching our beloved Red Sox play ball. As an all-American dad, as well as a sports reporter for a newspaper, he trained me on how to be a baseball fan and follow everything from wins, losses and game stats to player trades and season predictions....
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Americans living from hand to mouth
In this modern day of political malfunction and economic turmoil, the majority of Americans are living from hand to mouth. The National Foundation for Credit Counseling surveyed families in an online poll and found that only 36 percent of Americans could pay for an unexpected bill of $1,000 from an emergency fund, leaving the remaining 64 percent to search for options to cover the cost. Unlike the federal government, only 9 percent indicated t...
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