• Ogilvie: 50 years of cartoons!

    I became intrigued by art in 1954, while in the fourth grade at Sidney (Sharp County) Public School.  A talented high school boy came to our classroom and, using colored chalk, drew a Christmas scene on the blackboard. I seldom took my eyes off the …

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  • The Strawberries of Wrath

    The haciendas of Spanish America were based on enormous land grants from the Spanish crown and became the sites of large plantation farms worked on a neo-feudal basis by servile or near-servile labor. Such farms, typically, were situated near large concentrations of native labor, and …

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  • Boston Marathon bombing tweets

    When James French became the last person to be executed in 1966 under Oklahoma’s death penalty law, he uttered these famous last words (no joke) that quickly belong to the ages: “Hey fellas,” he shouted to reporters there to witness his electrocution. “How about this …

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  • Still hollering for gladiators

    Even before a drop of blood was spilt you could hear the sounds of the crowd growing with anticipation. Shouts, laughter, shrieks and howls could be heard from all corners of the great colosseum. The air was tangible, heavy with expectation and the smell of …

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  • Boots in Boston

    Riveted to our screens, we learned last week of the enormous value of social media and surveillance video when tragedy strikes. But — and this second point is as significant as the first — we were also reminded of the importance of established, well-funded, conventional …

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  • If you Enron-ize public schools, expect cheating to happen

    The Ohio state auditor is investigating the practice of “scrubbing,” or dropping students from attendance rolls so they don’t count against test scores. The former El Paso superintendent is in prison for using truant officers to encourage at-risk students to drop out. Other testing scandals …

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  • That’s America to me

    I listened to a Frank Sinatra tune this week — “The House I Live In” — and enjoyed a renewed desire to fight on. Sinatra performed the patriotic song in an 11-minute movie short made in 1945, shortly after the conclusion of the war. In …

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  • Vicksburg National Military Park

    On a recent tour to the Vicksburg National Military Park in Vicksburg, Miss., two Independence County residents wondered what roles Arkansas Confederate soldiers played in the Vicksburg Campaign, and the 47-day siege of the “Hill City.” In late spring 1862, Vicksburg, Miss., was the only …

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  • Arkansas’ Centennial in 1936

    The highlight of the state’s 100th birthday celebration, in 1936, came near the start of festivities when President and Mrs. Roosevelt came for an official visit. A special train arrived in Hot Springs in the early hours of June 10, carrying the presidential party and …

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  • Immigration bill drops in the dead of night

    After working behind closed doors for weeks, the Senate Gang of Eight walked an extra mile to keep the comprehensive immigration reform bill a secret. Normally, legislation of this magnitude that has been surrounded by massive publicity would be introduced mid-day to allow the press …

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  • The death of liberty

    Benjamin Franklin warned that a people preferring security over liberty deserves neither. In the aftermath of each attack upon our nation, we have seen this maxim play out with growing restrictions on our God-given constitutional freedoms. There was the USA Patriot Act, passed in the …

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  • Boston bombs prompt Twitter toxicity

    Shortly after Boston’s annual idyll devolved into mayhem, I tweeted: “Worst thing: People died … Second worst thing: The upcoming blame game.” Sure enough, it was game on. I get that we’re all upset. The urge to lash out is strong, and we’re only human. …

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