Abuse, waste in government programs high

Whether intentional (i.e. fraudulent), the result of sloppy bookkeeping or almost certainly a combination of the two, $100 billion a year in improper government payouts over five years adds up. In 2013, federal agencies made $106 billion in improper payments — $97 billion in overpayments and $9 billion in underpayments — to recipients of government […]

Tips that may help to attract volunteers

Robert Arrowsmith

By Robert Arrowsmith Publisher On Tuesday, I shared some thoughts about why our country has a lack of volunteers. Here are ideas for solving some of those problems right here in eastern New Mexico: • A central portal, database or website for regional volunteerism: This has come up in several discussions. Instead of the every-man-for-himself approach […]

Mood not joyous for most despite economic uptick

No wonder there is joy on Wall Street, where the Dow Jones industrial average has traded above 17,000 for the first time. On Main Street, however, the mood is not yet joyous. Issued on the stock market’s last trading day before the Fourth of July, a stronger-than-expected U.S. jobs report calmed worries about the economic […]

Some genetic testing covered again

By Tom Philpott Military Update The Defense Health Agency, relying on medical laboratory experts and existing authority to conduct medical “demonstrations,” will restore TRICARE coverage this month for up to 40 genetic tests used in patient care. Many of these laboratory-developed tests — also called molecular pathology tests — are viewed as medically necessary. But […]

Happy ‘Weird’ Al’s back in action

By Kevin Wilson Staff columnist Getting on the Internet every morning is a little wierder this week, and many of us couldn’t be happier. Monday saw the world premiere of the video for “Tacky,” the first song on “Weird” Al Yankovic’s new album, “Mandatory Fun” and a parody of the Pharell Williams “Happy” song that […]

Veterans need to get services they deserve

The can of worms that is the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs isn’t empty yet. The VA has been reeling recently from revelations of veterans dying while waiting for medical treatments; and tens of thousands being parked for long terms on secret waiting lists for appointments; and top officials reportedly responding by covering up these […]

Plenty of issues stopping volunteers

By Robert Arrowsmith Publisher I’m here … and will volunteer. For those who do not know about me, I have recently moved here (again) from a market that is in year seven of an energy boom, where $15 an hour is the considered minimum wage, finding workers to do most service jobs can be most […]

Obamacare problems death by thousand cuts

Watching Obamacare unfold has been like taking a dizzying carnival ride. With every twist and turn, the health care direction is altered and its riders are confronted with unexpected consequences. The Affordable Care Act got off to a wobbly start with an ill-prepared website. Health exchange signups lagged behind expectations, prompting a deadline extension to […]

Vacation an adventure in Arkansas

By Wendel Sloan Local columnist My recent vacation through Arkansas was a tale of triumph, tragedy and astonishment. The latter happened in an east Texas eatery when lifelong friend Sid Hicks put Biblical scholars to shame by creating a self-serve ice-cream masterpiece surpassing the Tower of Babble in height and diversity. In Hot Springs, Arkansas, […]

No easy fix for immigration crisis

By Tom McDonald State columnist No doubt about it. Our great debate over immigration has an emotional side to it. And this time we’re talking about children — more than 50,000 of them and growing — who are risking life and limb to make their way into the United States. No matter how you look […]