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Posts Tagged ‘commentary’

  1. Explaining Horror

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    August 6, 2011 by Steven Worden

    In keeping with my usual summer ritual, this past Sunday I bathed my dogs, scrubbing them for fleas and ticks. I recalled how I gave the larger dog, Anthony, his first bath many years earlier and how he had eyed me skeptically as I struggled to get him into the tub for the first time.

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  2. Sales Tax Holiday Coming Up

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    July 30, 2011 by Sue Madison

    By Senator Sue Madison (D) District 7 LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas shoppers can enjoy the state’s first sales tax holiday the weekend of August 6 and 7, when retail stores will not charge sales taxes on purchases of school supplies and articles of clothing costing less than $100. Accessories under $50 also will be exempt from the sales tax. Shoes, boots and sandals will also be exempt if they cost less than $100. The sales tax holiday is a result of Act 757, enacted earlier this year by the legislature. Although it was labeled a “back to school” tax holiday, it will benefit all consumers who buy clothes and accessories. No sales taxes at all will be collected, neither state nor local sales taxes. That means shoppers will pay what the sticker price indicates for clothing, accessories and school supplies. Clothing that will be exempt from the sales tax includes footware, diapers, wedding apparel, gloves, aprons, hats, neckties and even rubber pants. Exempt accessories include jewelry, cosmetics, briefcases, watches, wigs, hair notions, umbrellas and non-prescription sunglasses. Exempt school supplies include binders, paper, notebooks, markers, pencils, rulers and protractors. It is a long list of items that common sense dictates are …

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  3. Political Spectrum: Military bases on foreign soil

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    July 28, 2011 by wcobserver

    This column highlights the range of political thought in our society by presenting commentary from various ideological perspectives. Occasionally we ask a question of two commentators and print their answers, side by side. We also invite commentators to submit an essay on any topic that promotes their political philosophy. We publish these essays as “Voice from the Left” and “Voice from the​ Right.” The perspective from the Left will be presented by John Gray of Greenland who is a self- described “Social Democrat.”  ANSWER: NO! EXPLANATION: 1000 is even higher than the 850 bases documented by Chalmers Johnson in his excellent series of books, Blowback, The Sorrows of Empire, and Nemesis. But, considering the number of “black sites” in the U.S.A. and elsewhere, detailed in Blank Spots on the Map, by Trevor Paglen, which number in the hundreds, even that 1000 number may be a bit low. Unless we are aiming to control the world with a global military empire, there is no reasonable explanation why we should spend more on warring than on all other responsibilities combined. The “on-budget” part of the military consumes approximately 60% of our entire annual budget. These off-budget black sites, off-budget wars, and off-budget …

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  4. The Demise of a Sacred Space

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    July 22, 2011 by Steven Worden

    Will someone please turn Texas over? To borrow from the last words of the martyr St. Lawrence as he was being grilled alive over a blazing fire: “Turn me over, I’m done on this side.”

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  5. The Perils of Positive Thinking

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    July 22, 2011 by wcobserver

    The big-city dailies have been running full-page ads for an event called the “Get Motivated! Business Seminar.” The ad’s pitch relies heavily on America’s romance with celebrity worship, bargain hunting and Biblical authority.

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  6. Guarded Optimism

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    July 15, 2011 by wcobserver

    The West Fork Water Department’s woes won’t end with a hike in water rates. The depth and breadth of the problems in that department will require many months, perhaps years, to sort out and return the city utility to solvency and accountability. The people who attended the June 14 public hearing regarding the rate increase didn’t get much in the way of a plan to rectify the department’s problems, which aren’t limited to financial insolvency. The financial problems are coupled with insufficient accountability and lack of transparency in the Water Department. Add to that questions concerning the legality of transferred funds by City Treasurer/Water Department Secretary Kristie Drymon, wife of Councilmember Rodney Drymon. The “go forward plan” presented by the Water Department was mostly a list of actions that have been and/or should have been in practice all along. New on the list, however, was an agreement to increase the number of Commission members from three to five. Good idea. It probably wouldn’t hurt to reduce the length of terms for commission members from eight years, but that wasn’t mentioned. As word circulated in the community that there were openings on the Water Commission nine citizens came forward and offered …

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  7. Distrustful Deer in the Headlights of Uncertainty

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    July 7, 2011 by Steven Worden

    According to David Rosmarin and his associates, “Cognitive theory posits that underlying beliefs and thoughts lie at the root of human affect.” Or more simply, change your thoughts and beliefs and you change the way you feel. As that famous folk psychologist, Mark Twain, prescribed years ago, “Drag your thoughts away from your troubles … by the ears, by the heels, or any other way you can manage it.”

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