Three things Congress can do

January 13, 2011 An Open Letter to Congress:I know you’re scared.One of your members was gunned down in public. Six people are dead, including a nine-year-old little girl, a third grade student council member who wanted to see democracy in action.You can pretend this was an isolated incident.Or, you can act like real leaders and have the courage to confront a root problem.Your lives may be at stake. Not just your political life, your real life.Do you really want to continue to claim that vitriolic and violent language isn’t a problem?

Earmarks missing the mark

January 13, 2011 The USA Today article almost caused me to drive off a bridge to nowhere.Our government can’t even squander our money efficiently — particularly where earmarks are concerned.Earmarks, says, “are government funds that are allocated by a legislator for a particular pet project, often without proper review.”Often slipped into large authorization bills — or the 13 appropriation bills that fund the federal government every year — earmarks tend to be concealed.

Your job, or your personality?

January 12, 2011 How did you choose your profession?Did you lie awake at night as a child fantasizing about spending 10 hours a day hunched over a computer?If you’re like most people, you probably fell into your profession.When I was a kid, my secret dream was to be a tele-evangelist.  But I gave up on that after I told my mother and she informed me that I’d have to start going to church.

Sarah should stand by her free speech

January 12, 2011 Last Saturday morning 20 people were shot in a Tucson Safeway parking lot by a 22-year-old who stated on YouTube he “won’t pay debt with a currency that’s not backed by gold and silver.” Fifteen minutes after the news broke, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin tweeted, “The price of gold today is at $1,368.90 an ounce.”Coincidence?Yes.

X files filling up

January 12, 2011 Fashion, relationship and life changes.Right now I’m being pulled in so many directions I’m having a hard time finding just what direction I’m heading in.In an effort to just wait it out and see what happens on my journey of 2011, I’m keeping myself busy by going through my fashion-tossing stage.I’m not sure why getting rid of some items is so hard, but the less space I have it seems the more I need to rethink what is really important in my life so some of those items I’ve held onto for years are destined for either a new home or the dump.

Election concerns

January 11, 2011 To The Editor:Ref: The article that appeared in Friday’s, Jan. 7, 2011, paper “Commissioners hear concerns from candidate” by Andrea Bruner.

For the birds, part 2

January 11, 2011 You know, some of this stuff, I actually don’t make up.  When I saw this one on Mr. Gore’s Internet, like most others I’m sure, I thought it was a gag; a ruse; a Saturday Night Live skit ... but it wasn’t.

Are we one step from Dystopia?

January 11, 2011 How close are we to a dystopian society?I found the USA Today article about the so-called new edition of “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” being reprinted without a racial slur that I agree, is a terrible, terrible word. The word appears 219 times in Mark Twain’s classic novel, but in a new edition it will be replaced with the word “slave.” Furthermore, the new edition will also change “Injun Joe” to “Indian Joe” and “half-breed” to “half-blood.”

88th to convene

January 10, 2011 Members of the 88th General Assembly gathered at the State Capitol today to begin the 2011 Regular Session.  When the session convenes we’ll be starting a roughly three-month period of studying, debating and voting on some of the challenging issues facing our state.  The landscape of the House of Representatives has changed, with 46 new members now sitting in the Chamber.  However, as always, our main priority is to ensure an efficient and productive session, and one in which we act in the best interest of the people we serve.

Cash home in need of TLC

January 10, 2011 Without GPS we might have missed it, driving down the gravel road lined with field after field, after field.“There it is,” I told Luke, pointing to a white house setting back from the road we were on. “We turn here,” I continued, ignoring the GPS’s intelligence.It wasn’t its size that shocked me or it being in the middle of nowhere, but the satellite dish attached to the roof’s edge and an air conditioning unit in the window are things one wouldn’t expect driving up to a country music legend’s boyhood home.