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Opinion
Hair-trigger death penalty
I see where another semi-homeless man has been gunned down in a police stop and search in ‘Frisco.
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Grotesque, inhumane death penalty
The United States has never been choosy about the company it keeps.
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Push-Button Politics
“The vacuum cleaner industry is the most brilliant scam ever invented,” my husband announced as he methodically disassembled our upright into a sea of plastic pieces and screws all over the dining room floor. I had placed it in his capable hands to figure out why one of my favorite machines had recently stopped sucking. However, instead of just repairing it and giving it back to me, I ended up on the receiving end of a lecture about why women ...
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Seen It Coming
Well, it has begun to happen. I predicted a few months ago that our people would be taking to the streets if the job situation in this country didn’t improve quickly. The people squatting on Wall Street are the vanguard of what very well might become a full-blown nationwide movement if Congress fails to do something soon to correct the financial blight that is sickening our economy and nation. Unlike other protest movements in the past, the pa...
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Coony’s Law won’t end cruelty to animals
The Nevada Legislature passed Cooney’s Law this year hoping to prevent cruelty towards animals. The law makes it a felony instead of a misdemeanor for cruelty and the torture of animals. Last year ,Raymond Rios, claiming his dog Cooney swallowed a mouse, cut his dogs stomach open with a box cutter to remove it. No rodent of any kind was found. After the dog bled to death, he returned the carcass to the SPCA of Northern Nevada. SPCA shelter man...
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What's the hold up?
I recently read an old magazine interview with the late comedian George Carlin and he said something to the effect of, “I like efficient people.” I’ve long enjoyed Carlin’s irreverent, no-holds-barred humor, but this personal revelation endeared him even more to me because I can so thoroughly relate. Inefficiency is the drag on this country. We see it daily in the bureaucratic morass of public policy, but it becomes more irritating in the rout...
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Press critic’s quotation book
Press criticism first slammed American newspapers 100 years ago with the Will Irwin 15-part series in Collier’s exposing newspapers for conniving with advertisers, paying for laudatory editorials and supressing the truth. Upton Sinclair followed in 1920 with “The Brass Check,” the first book to expose the press. Then in 1940 George Seldes started “In fact,” a magazine publishing the first regular press criticism in the world. Seldes’ name was ...
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Occupy yourself
People always want to be part of something larger than themselves, particularly if that something will garner people some sympathy. Case in point is the crash a few weeks ago at the National Championship Air Races. My girlfriend and I had some Facebook friends ask if we were OK, as if there were some momentary thought that the plane crashed on surrounding homes. The Stead airport is a stone’s throw from my house and even if I was there at the ...
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Defining Distractions
I had finally managed to shift from procrastination to production mode to write this week’s column. But the breaking news headline on TV created an instant distraction. The creator of one my favorite forms of distraction had just died. Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple and inventor of one of my favorite forms of procrastination, the iPhone, has moved on to revolutionize heaven with all kinds of new gadgets and gizmos. Who in heaven won’t welcome...
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Dirty words and sexy talk always get it on
Oh, you horny little devils. You are now out of the closet. The fact that sex sells is not news. I am, however, gratified that sex still sells newspapers. Two weeks ago, this column was headlined “Dirty books, holy men, false prophets and sex profits.” By noontime on Sunday, it far outstripped the number of page views for other Tribune commentators. Last Sunday’s “When money owns you” concerned that thing closest to your heart: your wallet. Wh...
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Sticky stones
Generally, columnists avoid conflicts with their brethren in the opinion peddling game, knowing all too well the glass nature of our own houses. Even when we disagree, we tend to allow every petty pundit their inch of ink in hopes of being given equal latitude the next time we write something totally off the wall. Sometimes, however, such etiquette must be set aside in the interest of protecting the public from published idiocy that threatens ...
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Change rule for children of illegals
Illegal immigration, especially from Mexico, continues to be a problem nationwide but especially in states bordering that country. Sources have indicated that conservatively, there are about 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States, most from Mexico. These illegals place a considerable burden on the various states’ social services, such as welfare, unemployment and the range of medical treatment. There also are a number of criminals ...
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Chris Christie: Mafia in the White House
Republican governor of the great state of New Jersey, Chris Christie, is chasing his party’s presidential nomination hoping to be swept to the finish line by popular demand. We really don’t have a good idea what his true intentions are, but I’m guessing he will actively campaign and gladly accept the nomination of his party. On the one hand, he says he isn’t ready for the job because of his wife’s objections. He said he wouldn’t accept the par...
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A Time to Kill
The American government assassinated one of its own citizens last week. Now there’s a headline sure to grab attention, even condemnation. But from the seat of this armchair commander-in-chief, it was the right move. Scholars have furiously debated the legality of killing Anwar al Awlaki, an American-born jihadist working with al Qaeda in Yemen, during a drone strike Friday. Awlaki is a self-professed propagandist and recruiter for the terror o...
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Life: the leading cause of death
They say bad things come in threes. One: Sitting at the University of Nevada, Reno campus on Sept. 6 conducting an interview for a pets story, my boss called me on my cell phone. “There’s been a shooting in Carson City,” he told me. In the end, four people plus the gunman were killed. Two: The first day of my recent vacation was Sept. 16. I was in Oregon at about 4:30 p.m. driving toward a campground when my boss called me again. “How bad is i...
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Quarterly shines amid gloom
Lapham’s is the best intellectual quarterly in America. In its fourth year, the quarterly is the inspiration and éclat of its editor, Lewis Lapham. His essay at the beginning of the “book” sets the theme for each issue. The topic of the fall number is “The Future.” Previous issues dealt with such themes as “Celebrity,” “Lines of Work” and “Food.” Each issue is studded with wonderful paintings and photographs of such works as Vermeer’s jewel, “...
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Sticks and Stones…
The rules of the kid’s playground are clear. When engaging in verbal battle, name calling is a perfectly acceptable game move. This is true even when the name you select has absolutely nothing to do with the subject of the argument at hand. For instance, when you’re arguing about who had first dibs on the swings, it’s okay to randomly call you adversary “four eyes” or “poopy pants.” These are the name calling rules of the kid’s playground. Unf...
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