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Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014
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Fleetwood Mac and more
Over 14,000 fans packed every nook and cranny of the Pepsi Center in Denver last Friday night to see the Fleetwood Mac concert and the result was magical. Various iterations of the band have been around since 1967 but the current line-up is the band most of us are familiar with; Mick Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks, John McVie, Lindsey Buckingham and, after a 16 year hiatus away from the band, Christie McVie. ...
Lessons learned from incidents with Korea, Cuba
It was quite a day in international relations, but what are the lessons? First, there was the surprise announcement that the United States and Cuba would swap prisoners and begin the process of normalizing relations that have been frozen since Fidel Castro came to power in 1959, punctuated by the Bay of Pigs disaster, Cuban Missile Crisis and U.S. sponsored attempts on the dictator's life...
More revelations in Department of Corrections mess
Just when you thought you'd read everything there was to write about problems with the Nebraska prison system, new revelations indicate a nagging intrusion from the governor's office. Parole Board Chairwoman Esther Casmer of Omaha has told a special legislative committee investigating the scandal-plagued Department of Corrections that she felt threatened by comments from Gov. ...
Nebraska's most underutilized natural resource
Quick, name some of our region's top natural resources. Water? Yes, we're sitting on one of the largest freshwater resources in the world, the Ogallala Aquifer. It's the source of consternation and conflict, declining at the shallow edges and the focus of opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline, which skirts the aquifer to the northeast...
A life well-lived
Read the news or watch it on TV and one can become disillusioned with our world today. We have a lame duck congress trying to spend us into the poor house. We have a President intent on making our borders porous and eager to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants all in hope of creating more voters for his socialist agenda. ...
Donate locally?
I have a question about McCook's "Shop Locally." We have in McCook two very nice thrift shops, so why is a semi trailer in Sears' parking lot from a Goodwill Company here and why are people of McCook taking items to it to be sold in other towns and we get no profit to stay in our town?...
An epidemic of lies
I grow tired of the non-stop narrative, made by the race hustlers and their fellow travelers within the mainstream news media, that there is an "epidemic" of white cops shooting unarmed black teens ... I am also tired of the asinine "protests for social justice" that the media continues to slavishly report...
Don't let scam artists rob you of Christmas joy
More and more of us do more and more of our business over the Internet, and it's not all buying baubles from China -- we're now able to order a pizza across town or refill a prescription using a smart phone app. That means more of our money is zipping around as digital data and an increasing number of criminals are following the footsteps of Willie Sutton, who, asked why he robbed banks, supposedly answered "because that's where the money is."...
Make sure Santa's gifts are safe this year
You can almost feel the level of activity building up to a Christmas Day crescendo, followed by another, smaller peak on New Years Eve and Day -- a quiet minute is a rare commodity in the waning days of December. Holidays are a great time for spending time with family and friends, but not for a trip to the emergency room...
Study shows potential for wind energy
There are plenty of economic and bureaucratic obstacles to be overcome in the long term, but Nebraska's wind energy industry has immediate potential for even short-term expansion. The Wind Coalition is pointing to results from an official report released today by the Nebraska Power Review Board, which commissioned a study by the Brattle Group as aresult of passage of LB 1115 last legislative session...
Protest is protected; rioting is not
There has been a lot of conversation lately about the protests that occurred in Ferguson, Missouri and in cities across the nation in regards to the Michael Brown killing. It's important to remember that peaceful protest has been protected by court rulings for decades but rioting hasn't and rioting is what we see way too much of...
Smart phones, medical data raise questions
Back in the analog age, we would have been amazed to know the amount of computing power most of us carry around in our pockets and purses today. Digital capabilities that would have taken a railroad box car to ship in the 1950s can now be clipped to your belt or, increasingly, strapped to your wrist in the latest wearable technology...
Great support
Thank you, thank you for your great support for my Adopt-a-Chaplain project. It is greatly appreciated. We sent to three chaplains each receiving 50 boxes. Many of the boxes had Christmas cards in them and I know this warmed the hearts of many. I was so proud of the children who took this project on. The notes were priceless. (I peeked at a few of them!)...
Carbon monoxide can be pernicious killer
Nebraska's weather can be unforgiving if you find yourself out in it unprotected, but the alternative can be just as dangerous if your heating equipment isn't up to snuff. Unfortunately, that's too often the case, and it's getting worse, according to the Nebraska Poison Center, which reports a 24 percent increase in carbon monoxide calls so far this year compared to last year...
The honor of a lifetime
As my Senate term comes to a close, I want to express my deep appreciation for the incredible privilege of serving you in public office. I'm honored by the trust you've have placed in me over the past 32 years. If I could turn back the clock, I'd do it all over again. But none of it would have been possible without God's blessings, faithful friends and supporters and a loving family, especially my spirited wife, Stephanie...
Microscopic life plays big role in staying healthy
Germs: They're everywhere. From the common cold to Ebola, we're pretty much at the mercy of our microscopic companions. The flu virus is especially devious -- because of haphazard replication of its DNA, new strains are appearing all the time. Flu vaccines that have to be prepared months in advance are sometimes effective against the strains that actually appear, and sometimes not...
Hunters say thanks
I would like to say thank you to the communities of Cambridge and McCook, from myself and the rest of my hunting party. This is the second year now that we have traveled from our homes in (way) Northern California to hunt whitetail deer in your beautiful state...
Nebraskans keep up giving tradition
We just experienced the seasonal celebration when we're supposed to give thanks for all our blessings, and we're now knee-deep in preparing for what is supposed to be a day for giving -- although most of us tend get a little more excited what we might receive rather than what we're giving...
Immigrants more important share of citizenry
Today's young adults -- millennials age 18-34 -- are less likely to have been married than their counterparts from 1980 and are more likely to live in poverty despite being more likely to have a college degree. Oh, and they're more likely to speak with a foreign accent, having been born somewhere other than the United States...
Nebraska hires Pelini's alter ego
Bo Pelini was the head coach of the Nebraska Cornhuskers for seven years and for all of those years, I've been writing and saying that he was the wrong man for the job. So I'm certainly not disheartened by his dismissal. But some are. I tracked a poll taken this past Wednesday that had over six thousand respondents and it showed those in favor of Pelini's firing at 50.1 percent and those opposed at 49.9 percent. ...
Public perception not always best market regulation
Natural market forces are always preferable to government control of the economy, but they sometimes fly in the face of logic. The "pink slime" flap of a few years ago is one example -- after a television network "exposť" of the way "finely textured meat" was produced, the industry basically collapsed, closing factories, throwing thousands out of work and wasting nutritious food that formerly was added to beef products to reduce the fat content...
'Killing Patton' review
The Trenton Public Library ordered "Killing Patton" by Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard for its patrons. This book, which is a best seller, was published by Henry Holt and Company in 2014. Important jigsaw puzzle pieces from my own childhood were available to me at last when I read it. I visualized events from World War II taking place from 1939 to 1945. When Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, I was in the fourth grade. This book jogged memories...
Medicaid expansion or no, fair, equitable system needed
Red Willow County is being used as an example of what can happen to people without health insurance. Nebraska Appleseed testified Tuesday before a legislative committee examining the effects of our state's decision not to participate in Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act...
Body cameras could help separate fact from fiction
You can't watch a television commercial or visit YouTube without seeing video of someone sky diving, skateboarding, skiing, surfing or scuba diving, usually as a vehicle for selling a sports drink or beer. The advent of the GoPro camcorder, not to mention video-capable smartphones, means more and more of our lives are being captured on videotape...
The beach and a Volt
California and an interesting adventure last week. I was able to drive my son's new Chevy Volt. The Volt an all-electric car with a small gas burning engine and generator on board. Yes the much ballyhooed Chevy Volt. When you walk up to the shiny black auto it looks like most of the 2014 models on the streets today. ...