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Reader beware of what's not really there
by Andrew Barbano
Nov 27, 2013 | 2151 views | 0 0 comments | 158 158 recommendations | email to a friend | print
If you need any more reason to support the Barbwire.TV community channel, looky here.

GHOSTS OF CHRISTMAS PAST. Walmart must stop stuffing employees with stupid pills.

The bandidos are building a new store in the tax-subsidized, underachieving Sparks Marina Legends shopping center. (See

"Amelia McLear, senior manager of public affairs for Walmart, said the company has not closed any stores in the Reno-Sparks area and it does not plan to close any more with the addition of the Legends store," according to Garrett Valenzuela's report of a Sparks Planning Commission meeting in last week's Tribune.

Untrue. When Walmart was trying to get its northwest Reno store approved, the Arkansas pirates likewise promised they were not "planning" to close any stores, especially Northtowne at McCarran and US395/I-580. Activists warned that Wally World has littered the country with empty big boxes. Sure enough, Northtowne closed. (See

DIDJA KNOW that Reno car dealers threatened to stop all charitable contributions if the school repair tax passed? So said a county commissioner during a hearing.

GHOSTS OF CHRISTMAS PRESENT. I'm researching both a serious public safety danger as well as a burgeoning public health hazard that may end up rivaling the fabled Fallon cancer cluster.

If I'm getting hot leads like these, what are guys who do this for a living working on?

The Nevada Public Utilities Commission, NVEnergy and Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto's consumer advocate have caved to corporate welfare queen Apple's demand for secret proceedings. Even those allowed to intervene in the Fort Churchill solar power plant case have to sign non-disclosure blood oaths.

When public business is not conducted in public, the great unwashed usually get their pockets vacuumed. And we don't even get kissed afterward.

Which leads me to Sparks City Hall. One of these days, they're gonna get busted for illegally vague meeting notices. This week's agenda noted a hearing on minor and major deviations to a quantitative standard in city code. Huh?

GHOSTS OF CHRISTMAS YET TO COME. I loved last Sunday's Gazette-Journal multi-page spread about how Reno is making progress toward becoming a college town. About time after well over 100 years.

The stories all but ignored gambling, a word no longer used in polite publications. A front-page New Yorker-esque non-scale drawing totally eliminated the downtown casino district. A reader from Mars would assume that hotel-casinos don't exist in these parts.

The illustration showed the northwest Walmart (obviously critical for a university environment), the Little Waldorf Saloon (ditto) and UNR to the north with the mid-town retail district in the foreground. The tenderloin was eliminated save for the mucky Truckee River.

Perhaps it was a purported forecast of Reno after global thermonuclear war when God herself pays the wages of sin with the grapes of wrath.

Happy Thanksgibleting to you and yours.

Esté bien. Haga infierno. / Be well. Raise hell. 

Andrew Barbano is a 44-year Nevadan and editor of E-mail Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988.
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