NM aerospace bigger than Virgin

By Tom McDonald State columnist On Halloween, a nightmare for the commercial space industry occurred. SpaceShipTwo, a craft designed to take people to the edge of space, apparently broke apart, killing one of its pilots and injuring the other. The crash occurred in the Mojave Desert, where Virgin Galactic does its test flights. As tragic […]

Political gridlock strictly problem within Congress

Anyone who claims to understand the results of the 2014 midterm elections is fooling himself — the analysis and fallout from this Democratic shellacking will take months to unravel. After all, it’s an election where Republicans made big gains but progressive issues won handily. What that means is hard to decipher. We like this tongue-in-cheek, […]

Virgin’s crash tragic but inevitable

By Kent McManigal Local columnist Being a fan of spaceflight, especially manned spaceflight, I was saddened by the breakup and crash of Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo. I hope the problems that caused the loss of the vehicle, and the death of her pilot, are quickly found and solved. Even in the shadow of this new disaster, […]

Election candidates deserve thanks

By Rube Render Local columnist The first Tuesday in November during even numbered years is the specified date when the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune are visited upon those who decide to enter elective politics. We have just completed another one of these cycles; fortune either smiled upon or piled upon citizens foolish enough […]

Holidays meant for family time, not shopping

Finally, a holiday trend that needs to catch on. Different stores across the country — both local mom-and-pops and national chains — are deciding their employees should stay home on Thanksgiving Day to enjoy family time. Instead of joining the open-for-Christmas-and-let’s-all-start-shopping trend, businesses are beginning to say no to the madness. Black Friday, of course, […]

Drop in oil price affects political scene

By Robert Arrowsmith Publisher I’m sure everyone has seen it. The price of gas is declining and frankly declining quickly. Prices are down 20 percent nationally since June. Some forecasters are predicting gas prices will get down to the $2.75 range before winter bumps these prices back up. For most of our generations’ lives, when […]

Deputy shooting should lead to policy reviews

The fatal shooting of a Santa Fe County sheriff’s deputy, his comrade-in-arms charged with his murder, is too shocking to be absorbed quickly. So many questions. So many what ifs. So many tears to be shed for the victim, the accused shooter, their fellow deputies and most of all, their families, children and their two […]

Fit to be tied by unproofed political mailer

By Wendel Sloan   Local columnist One political candidate tells me in a mailer his allegiance is to the “Untied” States of America, while his opponent has no allegiance. If such un-proofed poppycock leaves you fit to be tied, or other races between the cash-flush and the cash-strapped seem cash-ordained, I selflessly offer myself as […]

We need to fix health care system

By Tom McDonald State columnist All this talk about health care and its costs, brought on by Think New Mexico’s most recent report, got me to thinking about my own experiences with hospitals and their bills — and I’m not alone. Fred Nathan, the think tank’s founder and executive director, says his group has been […]

Letter to the editor: Lack of basic human decency appalling

This newspaper has recently highlighted questionable actions by a public servant, Clovis police Officer Brent Aguilar. Unsurprisingly, the events in August have caused a stir within the community. Additionally, this officer had a similar incident occur six months prior. The circumstances differ slightly, but his actions in both share similarities. As stated in an editorial […]

NM government breaks public’s trust once again

In 2003, the New Mexico Legislature adopted the Voter Action Act, providing for public financing of campaigns for the powerful Public Regulation Commission. It was intended to improve PRC elections by offering candidates the option of funding their campaigns with public money rather than soliciting and accepting contributions from some of the same corporate interests […]

Statism no way to deal with people

By Kent McManigal Local columnist Walking down a lonely trail, with no one else around, do your politics matter? Even to yourself? When shipwrecked on a deserted island, or sitting alone in your house, it doesn’t matter how you believe you should relate to other people. Politics is hypothetical in isolation. Once you add one […]

President’s comments real idiocy

By Rube Render Local columnist When I was a child it was common for local officials to quarantine families for any number of diseases. Among these were mumps, measles, chicken pox and that most dreaded of all childhood killers, polio. Swimming pools were closed in August as a precaution and no one questioned the ability […]

Idiocy greater threat to US than Ebola

It sounds so sensible. Ebola is a deadly disease. Unchecked, it could cause disaster in the United States, just as it is doing in Africa. So, to be sensible, quarantine those health workers who have been taking care of Ebola patients in Africa. A 21-day quarantine, while tough for the non-symptomatic patient, just makes sense. […]

Looking from a credibility standpoint

By Robert Arrowsmith Publisher As I was taking my Saturday afternoon shower, disappointingly watching what I thought was my next layer of tan rapidly go down the drain due to the fact it was dirt from mowing, it got me thinking about a couple of things. } • I have to admit this took me 30 […]

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Nobel committee chooses novel route to peace

In awarding this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, the selection committee reached across a tired and bitter divide. It split the honor between a Pakistani teenager, Malala Yousafzai, and an Indian activist, 60-year-old Kailash Satyarthi. The winners’ homelands have been in conflict since 1947, when partition created two separate nations. Tensions continue today, particularly in the […]

Think New Mexico can fix health care

By Tom McDonald State columnist There are two things in particular that I like about Think New Mexico: It’s nonpartisan and it’s pragmatic. Both are reasons why this homegrown think tank is so effective. From getting the sales tax lifted off food to making full-day kindergarten accessible to all New Mexico children, whenever this 15-year-old […]

Solutions: How to fight rudeness

By Wendel Sloan Local columnist My book-of-the-month summary for October is “The Civility Solution: What to Do When People Are Rude” by P. M. Forni. Here is the Wendel’s Notes version: • Rude behavior directed at you is not about you. In responding, do not demean or act self-righteous. • Cool off before responding. Express […]

Render: Getting shafted nothing personal, but not correct

The other day a friend of mine who served as an infantry platoon leader with the 1st Air Cavalry in Vietnam asked me what I thought about the president sending military personnel into West Africa where the Ebola virus is rampant. After a short pause and without waiting for my reply he blurted, “If I […]

Free society can survive just fine

“But who will build the roads?” Not only does this question come up anytime someone discusses eliminating government altogether, it comes up when anyone discusses cutting it back as an example of “essential” minimal government. What is it about roads that they can’t exist without government? Governments don’t build roads. They hire contractors to do […]