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Opinion
City government goes mental
Anyone who goes into government has got to be a little crazy. Apparently the people within government think so, too. Last week during a routine check of the upcoming Sparks City Council agenda, I came across an item regarding City Manager Shaun Carey’s performance review. The item contained some interesting language: When considering a contract extension for Carey through 2012, the council will consider his “character, conduct, professional co...
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Sell us this day our daily bread
Everybody knows / the fight was fixed. The poor stay poor / The rich get rich. That’s how it goes / Everybody knows. — Leonard Cohen What if I told you that the price of food you pay every day is 80 percent higher than it should be? But what do you care? You can still get a taco for a buck almost anywhere, so what’s the big deal? What if I uttered the magic words that Wall Street caused it? Would that get your attention? Regular Barbwireites h...
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Art wins in Polanski release
Perhaps pure justice did not triumph in the Swiss refusal to expedite Roman Polanski, but cinema art did. Bernard Kouchner, French foreign minister, rejoiced over the decision to free Polanski. And no wonder. Polanski enriched movie history by directing such outstanding films as “Knife in the Water,” “Rosemary’s Baby” and “Chinatown.” But possibly his greatest movie was “The Pianist” filmed in 2002. “The Pianist” is a moving adaptation of the ...
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Law and disorder
It is the way of the world that many of mankind’s proudest achievements carry with them unintended consequences that are often more important than the original event. The Romans created domestic water systems using malleable lead for the plumbing, a choice that made Rome the cleanest city in the empire but contributed to the slow genetic deterioration of mental acuity that resulted in the failure of the empire from mismanagement, according to ...
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Can’t make this stuff up
I have a confession. Until very recently, I had never seen a horse wear makeup. I’ll admit I’ve occasionally frequented bars where such confusion would be understandable, but this was different. This was actual equine wearing products designed to accentuate the eyes and define the nose. I imagine overhearing two Arabians talking about their makeup would go something like, “Does this mascara make my face look long?” Granted, I know little about...
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No change in golf schedule for 2011
According reports from the PGA and the Reno-Tahoe Open, next year’s Montreux event will again be played on the same weekend as the American Century Championship at Edgewood, South Shore Lake Tahoe.
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Tosha: the full-service representative
In some ways, the doctor’s office reminds me of a nightclub.
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All in the name of Art
It’s not often that people being led on a wild goose chase in nearly 100-degree July weather say they liked the experience. Such was my walk around downtown Reno.
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Gaming is off its game
Let’s say, for argument’s sake, that Hot August Nights leaves our area, never to return. What then?
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The simple song of greatness
He was a mensch, a whole man, a good person of high integrity and good character.
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All hail Rolling Stone
It is rare that a single newspaper or magazine article is so devastating that it topples a powerful person.
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Thumbs up thumbs down
One Sunday a month, the Sparks Tribune will provide a roundup of miscellaneous community events, government action and everyday occurrences and give a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” in support or disapproval. 
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Monetary Masturbation
In case it has escaped your notice, our nation and the rest of the Western capitalist world is in what only the dedicated euphemists can call a recession.
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Round one in the fight for Nevada’s Senate seat
The Great Nevada Senate campaign is gaining steam now that the candidacy of Republican challenger Sharron Angle has started clicking on all cylinders.
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Spies: How times have changed
Last week’s spy exchange between the United States and Russia reminded me of another publicized case of international espionage that took place in 1951. Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, both Americans, were convicted of being foreign agents and forwarding secrets from the Manhattan Project to Russia. They were executed in the electric chair at Sing-Sing prison in 1953. The Rosenbergs were found guilty of giving the communists top secret information...
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Why we need a hike in gas prices
Times are tough and money is short, so why would I support an increase in gas prices? I support it because it is the best way to stimulate the economy with green technology and reduce our carbon output. Here is how it would work. Say the government fixed the base price of gasoline at $4 per gallon. Currently, the difference in price (about a dollar) would be put towards research and development of alternative fuels. If the price goes higher (a...
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Feeling betrayed by Hot August Nights
Bill Harrah was an absolute genius. He started a swap meet for car enthusiasts at the area that is now Rancho San Rafael Park in Reno and it evolved into the multimillion dollar extravaganza we now call Hot August Nights. Well, apparently, we better enjoy the ride because, according to local scuttlebutt, Reno will not have this golden goose to kick around any more after the year 2011. The principals deny it, but there is fear that those who ru...
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Hot August Nights is cooler here
About 10 years ago, a friend helped me get a job with a hot rod magazine headquartered in Southern California. I had no knowledge of cars whatsoever, but the casual atmosphere, decent pay and close proximity were all that mattered to me. My job was not to be a writer, but to edit the articles written by the guys who actually knew about cars. They wrote really technical pieces about engines and brakes and chopping and modifying and all kinds of...
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Hope fails eternal
“Don’t let the perfect become the enemy of the possible.” A popular cliché used to justify compromise in the political sphere, but one that bears challenge in these precarious times. To sell short what is obviously the good in order to achieve small gains, is to accept evil for convenience and image over truth. Ever since President Obama ran and won on the slogans of “hope” and “change,” I have been pondering the new hopefulness in America, an...
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The twisted ethics of sports, politics and rock ‘n’ roll
The apparent defection of the area’s major tourism, corporate welfare project provides poetic justice and overdue comeuppance to misguided town fathers and mothers. The Reno-Sparks Convention and Visitors Authority saved Hot August Nights from bankruptcy and oblivion when the event went belly up in its second year, 1987. Organizers were so flush with the surprising success of the 1986 inaugural that they booked about twice as many rock ‘n’ rol...
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