Finds on our back roads amazing

By Tom McDonald State columnist Travel the back roads of New Mexico and it’s amazing what you can find. Last week my daughter Maya and I took a day trip to the northeastern tip of New Mexico, for a meeting I had in Clayton. Then we returned to our hometown of Las Vegas by way […]

State still has abysmal DWI conviction mark

Despite tougher DWI laws and initiatives enacted over the past decade or so, we still have drivers eluding the long arm of the law. Repeatedly. Take the case of Celestino Centeno, arrested recently on his 13th DWI after he backed out of a driveway and slammed into a curb. Centeno denied drinking but had “alcohol […]

Liberty frees from control situations

By Kent McManigal Local columnist Why would anyone want liberty? It requires responsibility,, after all. It removes most of your opportunities to whine and blame everyone else when things go wrong. It leads to minding your own business. Where’s the fun in that? Well, there are benefits. What is liberty? According to Thomas Jefferson, “Rightful […]

Paid political consultants causing rift

By Rube Render Local columnist If you follow politics at all you have probably heard that the tea party wing of the Republican Party is either alive and surging or is for all intents and purposes dead in the water. Eric Cantor’s primary loss in the Virginia primary proved the tea party was in ascendance […]

Medical pot program too easily abused

There were legitimate concerns with some of the Department of Health’s proposed revisions of its medical marijuana rules — a hefty new fee that had yet to be justified chief among them. But rather than reconsider why users — presumably some of the state’s most medically vulnerable individuals — should have to fork over an […]

Main Street project has run its course

Robert Arrowsmith

By Robert Arrowsmith Publisher I took a walk around Main Street last week as I normally like to walk to meetings and walking-distance locations whenever possible, and saw and photographed the pots and their lack of flowers. First of all to those that have kept their planters up, kudos, they look beautiful. You clearly have […]

Private care for veterans challenging

By Tom Philpott Military Update The ambitious push by Congress and its veteran affairs committees to swiftly solve a health care wait-time crisis for tens of thousands of veterans by granting access to private sector care appears to have run hard aground. After four weeks, House-Senate conferees, working through their staffs to iron out differences […]

Letter to the editor: Joe Thomas asset as city manager

From reports in the Clovis News Journal, it appears the performance of City Manager Joe Thomas is being reviewed. I have had the opportunity to work with Thomas in a variety of situations. For over 20 years, I have served on various city committees including Public Works, Planning and Zoning Commission, and the Local Growth […]

Feds should investigate their internal conduct

American taxpayers — especially those who reside in the Land of Enchantment — deserve to know if the ends justify the means for U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents. As in: Ignoring rules and getting a reformed crack addict back on the pipe is OK if it means busting his dealer. Granted, Aaron Romero says in his […]

Often wondered about being black

By Wendel Sloan Local columnist Having often wondered what it’s like being black, I asked nephew-in-law Tony Meeking while recently staying with him and my niece Carol in Mesquite, a Dallas suburb. Tony, born in 1962 in Ruston, Louisiana, said, “You have to develop thick skin.” The mixed-race couple, married 28 years with two sons […]

Independent center decides elections

By Tom McDonald State columnist People don’t listen like they used to, and nowhere is that more obvious than in the world of politics. I’ve heard it said that we’re now in an era in which Americans can go through their entire day plugged in to the media and hearing only that which supports their […]

Letter to the editor — Grateful to great people of Clovis, Portales

A few weeks back my wife and I visited the Blackwater Draw Museum and archaeological sites. We pulled in to a Recreational Vehicle park to spend a couple of days in your area. As we were setting up our RV, we encountered some problems. The next morning we located a welding and repair shop. We […]

VA actions continue making things worse

Plagued with a huge backlog of disability benefit claims for years, the Department of Veterans Affairs responded by approving tens of thousands of claims without knowing whether they were valid. With the nation reeling from a litany of VA abuses, the bureaucrats appear to have been rubber-stamping unreviewed claims in what could be seen as […]

Tolerating government not a virtue

By Kent McManigal Local columnist Tolerance is sold to us as some sort of virtue when it’s nothing of the sort. It’s simply putting up with something, or someone, you hate. I don’t want or need any government, but how much could I tolerate? I could tolerate a government that coordinates the construction and maintenance […]

Codes could use some limitations

By Rube Render Local columnist Depending on where you go to look it up, the United States Code contains more than 50,000 pages. Considering that the Affordable Care Act and the Dodd Frank Financial Act each contain more than 1,000 pages, the above number seems low. To get some idea of the size involved, the […]

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 […]