McGee: Magic box 1, Grant 0

A vacation in Florida a couple of weeks ago gave The Lady of the House and I the opportunity to catch up on watching movies. Being out-of-towners we rented our DVDs from the red vending machine called "Red Box" inside the Southern Supermarket. We have a few of these contraptions sprinkled around here on the […]

Evolving pretense of objectivity

File this in the overflowing cabinet labeled: No Wonder the Mainstream Media Is Dying. On Tuesday, The Associated Press announced it is banishing the phrase "illegal immigrant" from its famous stylebook. The world's largest newsgathering outlet now advises reporters that "illegal" will "only refer to an action, not a person." AP directs writers not to […]

Laws do no determine right and wrong

Should "wrong" be illegal? Telling lies is generally acknowledged to be wrong, so should it be illegal to tell your wife she doesn't look fat in that dress when she does? Should it be illegal to tell kids Santa Claus visits them? When you criminalize everything you make it all subject to ridicule and increase […]

Insights into multicultural lunacy

Professor Craig Frisby is on the faculty of University of Missouri's Department of Educational, School and Counseling Psychology. His most recent book is "Meeting the Psychoeducational Needs of Minority Students." It's a 662-page textbook covering a range of topics from multiculturalism and home and family influences to student testing and school discipline. There's no way […]

Death dilemma: Where does the body go?

The Lady of the House and I went on vacation a couple of weeks ago with son and grandson in tow. Our first day on the road ended with a stay at a motel in east Texas. Somewhere in the middle of the night I was awakened by absolute quiet: No gentle sounds of slumber […]

Nature may have final say on human elephant conflict

Most often, they strike under cover of darkness, ripping crops from the fields, toppling and smashing buildings and crushing anyone who gets in their way. Sometimes their anger grows and they break ranks, targeting and murdering their human enemy on sight. They are intelligent enough to overcome most any obstacle set to deter them, even […]

Legislative reforms help level playing field

At the beginning of the session, I called on the Legislature to pass reforms making New Mexico more competitive with neighboring states. The mandatory cuts in Washington D.C. will disproportionately hurt our state and while we will always fight to protect our labs and bases, we must simultaneously work to diversify our economy by building […]

Double standard makes government its own counterargument

Civilization depends on unwavering respect for property rights, and the recognition of the right to defend property. Without the ability to own property, use it as you see fit, and defend it from those who wish to steal or destroy its value, we would still be living a nomadic stone age life. I don't know […]

Spreading common sense on courts and in the kitchen

Here are three things I was thinking today. They're not really related, except that they all address common sense, or the lack thereof: My office pool is totally wrecked (thanks Lobos), but there's still something else fun to gamble on this week for college basketball. Spot how many times you can see the same lazy […]

Importance always around corner

Time has been a stern disciplinarian in teaching me that I'm not special or unique — except in the way that everyone is. It's been a shock to learn that my profound thoughts and experiences mean little to others. My life is filled with minutiae: sleeping, eating, showering, dressing, shopping, reading, chit-chatting, exercising… Like everyone, […]

True freedom carries no demands

How much freedom do you have? How much freedom do you need? You are free to vote for people to take money from your neighbors on your behalf. You are free to vote to prevent your neighbors from using their property as they see fit. You are free to support violent early morning home invasions […]

Variety is spice of bracket pools

It's college basketball pool time, the time-honored tradition where we wager money on athletic competitions CBS paid billions to broadcast and charged millions for ad time, and everybody waxes poetic about amateur athletes. Here are my tips to make a bracket pool as fun as possible: You get one bracket. Period. You don't get a […]

Efficiency requires transparency

A few weeks ago I was picked up at the Nashville airport by a cheery taxi driver who, it turned out, was originally from Somalia. He fled his native country as it was being torn apart by a bitter and violent civil war, he told me, and escaped with family first to Nairobi, then to […]

To know liberty is to love it

Why isn't liberty attractive to most people? It is a question that crosses my mind frequently. Thomas Jefferson said "Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others." He went on to state "I do not add, 'within the limits of the law,' because […]

Few things beat a great office prank

"This is war, (expletive)." Yep, saw that coming. Whether the expletive is preceded by, "You asked for it," or "It's on now," or "Sleep with one eye open," all of the expletive-laced threats mean the same thing. Kevin 1, Sender 0. There are few good things that go with the word "office." The, as in […]

Military update: Leaders call sequester cuts ‘mindless’

The Joint Chiefs are breathing a bit easier after the House voted last week to fund the government through September, and included a 2013 defense appropriations bill that would give the armed services more money and budget flexibility to ease the threat of a wartime readiness crisis. House passage of the bill, HR 933, also […]

Want to secede? Hope you succeed

Petitioners in every state want to secede. They love our country, but not the way we elect presidents. I don't blame them. Who wants a secret basketball-playing Muslim from Kenya, who wants to use the United Nations to impose sharia law, to win by fooling 65.9 million welfare-dependent socialists (and a few college-educated, wine-sipping, pot-smoking, […]

Method for grading teachers too arbitrary

Our teachers are the professionals in charge of the future and it's time we give them the recognition they deserve. In few professions can a person perform at a high level but be held back by time and credentials. In the business world, highly effective leaders are recognized, promoted and paid. For our teachers — […]

Walk reminder of prankings past

My morning walk takes me most days past the scars of a long-ago field that was carved from a flat between two rows of sand hills south of our house. My father used to tell me it was on this 11-acre plot that he and his brother, Jack, were pressed into "slave labor" by a […]

Biggest pest: Government-owned property

Clovis' Poison Pellet Program for prairie dogs shows some of the flaws with "public" property, and with the sad state of property rights in general. Some people, me included, really appreciate prairie dogs for their historical significance to the region, and for their vital niche in the ecosystem. Wildlife of any sort is a valuable […]