Finding gold amid Vanity Fair dross
Vanity Fair magazine is fat with upscale ads, full of pictures of celebrities and runs 220 pages of dross. But once in a while amid the dreck are gems like the articles buried in the May issue. One article tells the painful truth of the huge gap between the wealthy and most Americans. Another extols the King James Bible. And one carries an interview with a great Shakespeare scholar. The piece on wealth is written by Joseph Stiglitz. It is titl...
So Much for Change Coming to Washington
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama promised to change Washington’s ways. Yet he’s as caught up in them as ever. As the week began, Obama kicked off his re-election bid with a sunny video of people talking about their hopes and needs, the very image of life outside Washington politics. By week’s end, Obama was mired in budget negotiations, canceling trips and scrambling to stave off a government shutdown that could only undermine the publ...
Which side are you on?
History suggests that we Americans are not particularly astute in our election of presidents. Recent experience illustrates our weakness for image over content in our leaders, beginning with Ronald Reagan, whose boyish affability masked a serious lack of understanding of the real world outside his imagined script as leader of the free world. Cushioned by expert partisan advisors, Reagan was allowed to be the figurehead for the neo fascist wing...
You can’t run from the awful truth
Civil rights legend the Rev. Onie Cooper was laid to rest last Friday by a standing-room-only crowd at Reno’s Second Baptist Church. The great and exalted sat with the least among us and holy men and women of all stripes. The highlight came with a rousing rendition of Onie’s favorite song “Lord, I Tried,” by awesome jazz and blues singer Pat Esters. Onie thus left us all feeling uplifted. He would like that. Awful truth department Just in time...
Trump the democratic process
A few years ago, out of pure curiosity, I decided to see what all the election season excitement was about. A local Sparks high school was holding a GOP caucus. I walked inside the gymnasium fully prepared to have the political experience of a lifetime. It turns out that a GOP “caucus” was really just a place where confused Republicans stood around, made small talk and checked their watches every few minutes. Of course, it was just a generally...
End domestic violence: give women a gun
High school graduation is traditionally the right of passage through the gateway of adulthood. Some graduates will go on to college. Some will find white-collar jobs and others will keep their part-time jobs at Jiffy Lube and McDonald’s for life. Planning for a successful future, the boys will follow their instincts of manhood: raise a family, drink beer and watch sports on television. The girls will explore their femininity and hope they don’...
BP’d-off about high gas prices
Gas prices as high as $4 a gallon are appearing all around the country. Rumor has it that $5 a gallon will be a reality later this summer. Two items on the New York Stock Exchange ticker that show almost an unending rise are the price of gold and the price of a barrel of oil. Unrest in the Middle East is the predominant reason given for this rise in oil prices. With the recent disaster in Japan, that country’s oil consumption has plummeted, wh...
That championship season
This year, as in most years, when the NCAA basketball championship game is over I always think back to the championship season my high school basketball team had in 1944.
Making money for education
Gov. Sandoval said he will not raise taxes to generate the funds Nevada needs for education. He wants everyone to focus on cuts. Sounds a lot like Gov. Gibbons. Hopefully Sandoval won’t make all the same mistakes, but he is off to a bad start. There are several options to raise money for education in Nevada but it requires creative thinking, not just business as usual. Here are just a few ideas: Legalize marijuana: People would flock to Nevada...
A Walk with the Giants
Last Thursday’s César Chávez celebration at Circus Circus was not outstanding for the presence of all those workers and officeholders. The fun part came when we inducted three union giants into the César Chávez Nevada Labor Hall of Fame and not one saw it coming. As we moved to the presentations, I faked a microphone problem and called an electrician to the stage. Al Davis (no, not the meanest guy in pro football) from Electrical Workers Local...
Housekeeping for survival
Despite the slowly improving economic indicators, millions of Americans are forced to change, drastically, their lifestyles, seldom for the better. Most obvious victims of the current downturn are the foreclosed home owners who have either already lost their house to the bank or are caught in a home worth a lot less than they owe on their mortgages. If they are lucky enough to still have a job, the burden of keeping the family sheltered is bru...