• Look up! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s idiots!

    Have you ever wondered just what it is that makes people in large crowds act so, well, stupid? I tried to think of a nicer way to put it but there just isn’t one. OK, so I didn’t try that hard, but still, almost every …

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  • The Great Bean Experiment

    John, one of my roommates, had never learned to cook. His family had always had a lot of money and servants. But, just before he came to college, his family had a major setback and lost almost everything. He not only had nonexistent culinary skills, …

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  • Tina Turner, Mad Max, Al Gore and you

    According to a new UN report, there’s good news and bad news about global warming. The good news — it’s worse than we thought. Yeah. That’s the good news. The bad news — you don’t want to know. Because then there’s worse news and ultimately, …

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  • When Arkansas entered the nuclear age

    It is the fundamental building block of the universe. It has the capacity to light homes and destroy cities. It is the atom. As the 20th century dawned, scientists began learning more about the atom and how to control its power. By mid-century, the dream …

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  • Limiting contributions

    Editorial cartoonists have sharpened and turned their disgust and creativity against the U.S. Supreme Court after justices ruled that free speech can be bought when it comes to limits on contributions for political campaigns. We’ve seen cartoonists draw the Monopoly brothers, Mr. Magoo, a megaphone …

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  • Standard testing and teaching writing wrong

    If you have a seventh-grader, then you know that he or she just got done taking a standardized test for writing. The good news is our country’s education policy recognizes writing is a necessary skill in the information era. The bad news is because of …

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  • Springtime in Washington

    Editor note: The following is an excerpt from Tom Purcell’s new book, “Comical Sense: A Lone Humorist Takes on a World Gone Nutty!”   Ah, springtime has finally arrived in Washington, D.C. The National Cherry Blossom Festival is beginning. The cherry trees, 3,700 of them …

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  • Someone say McThor’s?

    The analogy in the headline “Thor 2 is a Cinematic McDonald’s Cheeseburger” (Eileen Jones, Jacobin) is apt. There is indeed a strong parallel between the predominance in comics-to-film adaptations and diner-food restaurants: A few homogenous, formulaic products aimed at broad mass-market appeal. But far from …

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  • War decimated early industry

    Arkansas had very little industrial machinery prior to the Civil War, and it would be decades afterwards before the state shed its “cotton patch” image. Grist mills, powered by flowing streams in the Ozarks, constituted the major part of industry between 1820 and 1880. No …

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  • Holy comic book craze, Batman is 75!

    According to DC Comics, March 30 marked the 75th anniversary of the first appearance of Batman (in “Detective Comics” #27). I’ve been a fan of the Caped Crusader (created by Bob Kane and Bill Finger) for two-thirds of that span. With Batman and Robin available …

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  • Loving beyond worldly measure

    Some of the most difficult times to watch are when someone we know is trying to be there for a loved one when he or she is coming to the end of his or her journey. I remember watching my mother and father as they …

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  • About Town

    This week’s article expands a little beyond the Batesville area. Last week was spring break, unless you are a part of one of the school districts who had to lose spring break because of the winter weather this year. We decided to spend part of …

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