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Opinion
When money owns you
Last Friday, I spoke with a Sparks businessman named Jerry about Bank of America’s intention to soon charge $5 a month for using debit cards. I suggested the alternative of checks, but Jerry informed me that many enterprises won’t accept them anymore. BofA would love people to make more purchases on credit cards where the potential for exorbitant fees is even worse. Jerry pays a shocking amount in credit and debit card customer service charges...
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Don’t let foreclosures be your ruin
Many homes in our area either are in foreclosure or already have been foreclosed on. As a result, the homes have shifted ownership to the original mortgage holder, which means the home now has an absentee owner. Literally, no one is home. As a result of this, the homes have fallen into disrepair when it comes to the lawns, fences, etc. In places where there are multiple foreclosures, the area starts to resemble a ghost town with all the dilapi...
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The Autumn of My Life
The recent tragedy at the Reno National Championship Air Races brought back memories of the day when I asked my father what life is. I was a curious 12-year-old boy searching for the answer to what I thought was a simple question. Adults always had answers for everything but no one could answer my question about the meaning of life. With a frown on his face and thoughtful look in his eye, he said, “You’ll never know what life is until after yo...
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Dirty books, holy men, false prophets and sex profits
I’ve written about these guys many times since and they just won’t go away.
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Wanted: more tough editors
People who write for publication need a critical editor no matter how scrupulous they are as writers.
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Where are all the moderates?
Though independent voters, who generally identify as moderates, almost exclusively decide national political races these days, they are being pushed aside by fringe elements on both the right and left.
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Upgrade
I thought our TV was still brand new.
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Death watch
It’s always the same!
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Death From Above
Spencer Remembers
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Religion in public schools: God’s right in front of you
I just finished reading an article asking local religious leaders if religion should be taught in public schools. Among the contributors were Stephen Bond, senior pastor at Summit Christian Church in Sparks, Buddhist priest Phil Brian and Elizabeth W. Beyer, rabbi of Temple BethOr. Pastor Bond said because deep religious values shaped the history of our nation’s founding, it’s impossible to keep religion out of public schools. He’s probably re...
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Remembering Bill Harrah
Bill Harrah, the founder of Harrah’s gambling and entertainment empire, would have been 100 years old this year. He was a respected leader in not only Reno’s business community, but also Nevada’s and the country. He died when he was 66 years old and many people who now live in Nevada never knew anything of the man. It seems he has faded into Nevada’s history books. I never knew Bill Harrah, but I learned some things about the man that captured...
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Corporate Corruption
One of the first successful corporations in the world was the British East India Company (BEIC). A royal charter formed it in 1600. Historically, it was the most powerful corporation that has ever existed. It was a private company unaccountable to any governmental control and it had an army larger than any other force in the world at its time. It conducted its own criminal trials and ran its own jails. The new colonies in America resented havi...
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Corporate Bake Sales for Broken Governments
I’ve lived too long on the High Desert Plantation. Everything old is new again and none of it works. Instance in point: one local newspaper ballyhooing of the Ready for Life Community Compact. It must be important because advertising is running. The idea is to involve lotsa people to support education. The website, all the publicity and all the ads make no mention of Nevada’s grotesquely underfunded education system. It’s the equivalent of hav...
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Dogs in the manger
The mantra of the tea bag Republicans: “My Way of No Way” has now borne fruit, and it is bitter to the taste. By blocking every proposal from the White House and Democrat members, the GOP has plugged the sewer of legislative process for three long years, and now the toilet bowl is overflowing. By refusing to allow bills to pass the Senate with less that 61 votes the right wingnuts have kept the government on short leash Continuing Resolutions,...
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Time to stop celebrating 9/11
The nation went into a fanatical orgy to mark the 10th anniversary of the calamitous events of 9/11. Bagpipes skirled mournfully and the names of the dead were read solemnly. Presidents visited the “sacred ground” of the twin towers. The New York Philharmonic played  Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, the “Resurrection,” for airing on PBS. Full page ads were displayed with U.S. flags at half-staff next to the words “IN REMEMBRANCE.” The New York Times i...
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Catching readers in my web
Pining for new technology is something I have a lot of experience with. At about age 12, I desperately wanted a Nintendo video game system. Mind you, this was not a Nintendo that allowed you to swing a tennis racket or had state-of-the-art graphics. It had controllers with two buttons and four directions, simple graphics and 2-D characters that I am pretty sure moved on strings. But it was high-tech at the time. I begged my parents to buy it f...
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The Dangers of Racing Firsthand
Motor Racing, in all its forms, is a sport with definite hazards. Anyone that has climbed aboard or strapped themselves into a racing machine knows full well the risks. But this knowledge in no way lessens their passion for racing as it’s the reason they’re out there. They do, however, make sure to use the best safety equipment available. Jimmy Leeward, pilot of the WWII plane that crashed Friday, would have been aware of the risks as he opera...
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Pres. Obama fiddles around while the economy burns
History has reminded us that American presidents who are problem solvers — decisive, strong in character, courageous and have political savvy to whip Congress into shape — head the list of great leaders. President Obama’s speech to the special joint session of Congress last week introducing his $447 billion American Jobs Act will determine if he joins the short list of great presidents or the long list of mediocre heads of state remembered onl...
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Death, the Afterlife and Fending Off the Crazies
The death of a loved one leaves a hole in your heart that can never be filled, especially when the death occurs suddenly and without warning. With the shootings in Carson City last week and the 10th anniversary of 9/11 on Sunday, I have given a great deal of thought lately to death, the hereafter (or lack of) and the meaning of life. I’ve essentially wasted more than a week contemplating answers to unanswerable questions. It’s human nature to ...
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