Opinion, Analysis, Discussion

Consumers getting the shaft

March 3, 2015 — 

A recent Associated Press article described the current rate of U.S. Inflation as “ultra low,” i.e. “… inflation isn’t managing to reach even the Federal Reserve’s 2 percent rate.” I suppose this is good, but I do have a few questions when it comes to calculating Inflation vis-a-vis food costs.

Remember the half-gallon carton of ice cream? It shrank to 1.75 quarts, and then to 1.5 quarts.

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R.L. Crabb: It takes a village idiot

March 3, 2015 — 

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Lindy Beatie: ‘Big Night Out’ big help to Big Brothers Big Sisters

March 3, 2015 — 

Last year Diego’s Restaurant, at 217 Colfax Avenue in Grass Valley, hosted several “Big Night Out” events and they were such fun and so successful that June, Diane and Tony signed up for more events this year.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Nevada County and North Lake Tahoe was once again the fortunate organization to receive a portion of the proceeds from the evening on Feb. 3.

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Marika Smolensky: Back after a decade, Amy Grant doesn’t disappoint

March 3, 2015 — 

Amy Grant delivered a soulful, captivating acoustic performance, with her three-piece band, singing to a full house for her Feb. 26 Grass Valley Center for the Arts appearance.

She lived up to her promise to create an intimate “living room” concert. The audience delighted in shouting out their favorites and chiming in to familiar choruses like “My Father’s Eyes,” “Thy Word” and “El Shaddai.:

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Andy Burton: Let’s take the challenge to be safer drivers

March 3, 2015 — 

ANDY BURTON

Columnist

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Do the research, then decide

March 2, 2015 — 

Do the research, then decide

I would like to thank Jim Goetsch for his article, “Economic recovery slowed by administration’s policies” in response to Heidi Hall’s editorial on President Obama’s State of the Union Address. It had some very good and true talking points.

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Mark Rentz: Cap-and-trade, water bond make now the time to think big

March 2, 2015 — 

Seldom have need and opportunity combined with such force. With the driest January on record behind us and a fourth year of drought likely ahead, the world’s eighth largest economy faces questions about its water supply reliability, response to increasingly severe wildfires, and commitment to the goals set in its historic Global Warming Act of 2006.

With this year’s rainy season disappointing and fire season imminent, California must either choose to sit idly by and brace for inevitable smoke plumes and mudslides, or act to restore the state’s uncharacteristically dense forested watersheds.

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George Boardman: Making county economic development more difficult, and other issues

March 2, 2015 — 

The county Board of Supervisors apparently has nothing better to do in early May, so it plans to set aside an hour to hear a pitch about why we should sign up for the State of Jefferson.

Some residents will view this event as a waste of taxpayer money on something that has no chance of succeeding, but they fail to appreciate the therapeutic effect a short excursion into fantasy land will have for the segment of the community that doesn’t like what’s going on in Sacramento and Washington.

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R.L. Crabb: It takes a village idiot

February 28, 2015 — 

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Louis Pearl: If it hurts you or others, it’s not good

February 28, 2015 — 

Since before the beginning of the Crusades, men of good intention have argued the merits and demerits of Christianity, Islam and Judaism. All three religions have had a positive effect on mankind and at the same time, each has had a history of repression, barbarism and intolerance.

I have heard all the arguments for and against these religions and every argument I have heard has a basis of truth to it.

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Ruby Totten: Come on, George

February 28, 2015 — 

Ah rats ... I’ve always enjoyed George Boardman’s columns. But he blew it in his column, “It’s time to stop tolerating weird science of anti-vaxxers.” His biased reference to those who oppose PG&E’s Smart Meters as “people ... who think smart meters are spying on them,” showed lack of research. The outstanding majority of those wanting to veto Smart Meters list health issues as the chief drawback.

Ruby Totten

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Sue Clark: Robertapalooza raises funds for musical theater scholarship

February 28, 2015 — 

“I just need to console myself with gratitude that I have wonderful memories of doing shows together, sharing confiding and therefore growing.” (Choir member)

“She was an earthly angel.”

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Edward Thomas: Tree management plan confusing

February 28, 2015 — 

If it weren’t so sad, it would be amusing. The county stirs up a million dollar lawsuit by insisting on a tree management plan in the so-called visually important ridgeline/cell tower case, while a few miles away, down in the flats, trees are cut down without their permission.

Property owner in the first case demonstrates that their project can’t be seen from anywhere, yet county insists on a tree management plan. Can’t see the forest through the trees or can’t see the trees through the forest? You choose. I’m confused.

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Thomas Elias: Rice’s poll standing — Star power still a political factor

February 28, 2015 — 

Condoleezza Rice, the former secretary of state in the George W. Bush administration and now a Stanford University professor, has stated very clearly she would rather attend college basketball games and help choose the college football playoff teams than be a U.S. senator.

At 61, she says she prefers a secure job in academe, playing the piano in her spare time, mentoring students and then considering an executive-level job if the Republicans take back the White House. She probably would also rather not face the inevitable questions a campaign would bring about her role in government deceptions that led to this country’s long and costly war in Iraq.

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Jenny Warden: A flourishing economy grows on the Ridge

February 28, 2015 — 

Surprising to some, the San Juan Ridge is a hotbed of small business. There are about 150 enterprises with over 400 employees on the Ridge, according to a survey conducted by the Ridge Association of Manufacturers and Business Owners (RAMBO).

There are a number of industrial enterprises on the Ridge including construction, automotive repair, solar products, well drillers, gravel and excavation companies, and specialized manufacturers.

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Our View: Grass Valley City Council appointment fulfills civic duty, but leaves voters disenfranchised

February 28, 2015 — 

The appointment of Ben Aguilar to the Grass Valley City Council has drawn a great deal of criticism in wake of the council’s 3-1 vote Tuesday night.

But that criticism has centered on the process employed for the appointment, rather than the person actually appointed.

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Marilyn Rosenbrock: A little civility goes a long way

February 27, 2015 — 

Regarding letters to the editors and the articles recently printed in The Union: It is so easy to assume if I have not had a particular experience (i.e., friendly community) that you have described, you must not have had that experience either.

Another approach might be ... “that is not my experience in Nevada County and I am sorry you have encountered objections to your personal point of view. I will be more aware and speak out if I see that kind of disrespect.”

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Ralph Hitchcock: ‘The Sierras’ is the traditional usage – not “The Sierra”

February 27, 2015 — 

A Feb. 17 letter from Mr. O’Dwyer made a correct statement that the Sierra Nevada was one range. However, he then went on to state somewhat pedantically that therefore the plural term “the Sierras” is incorrect. Regardless of “correctness” local usage normally rules.

“The Sierras” has been used by almost everyone with a Northern California family heritage prior to the 1960s, when the influx of people from Southern California and the nation got underway. The term “the Sierra” seems to be used by those without that local heritage. The difference between the two terms is minor, but as a 6th generation Northern Californian I don’t want to be told by a person who admitted that he had just learned about antlers and horns, that the term my Northern California peers and I have been using all our lives is wrong.

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Bill McQuerry: ‘Grossly unbalanced cartoon’

February 27, 2015 — 

Herewith a few remarks in response to the grossly unbalanced cartoon of Feb. 11, featuring “Darwin.”

An unbiased individual, presented with the scientific facts from both sides of this long-standing controversy, in each area referred to in the cartoon (paleontology, DNA, botany, etc.) would see that the scientific evidence in each of these areas is at least as strong in support of creation as it is for evolution. In fact, since neither creation nor evolution can be either proven nor disproven, one’s support of either belief system comes down to just that: one’s belief system.

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Harry J. Wander: Vaccines are safer than diseases

February 27, 2015 — 

In over 56 years of practicing medicine, the last 50 specializing in pediatrics, I have seen many children die from vaccine preventable diseases. These have included such diseases as meningitis, pneumonia, whooping cough, measles, and chickenpox.

I have never seen a child die from a vaccine. I have never even talked with a physician who has seen a death from a vaccine.

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Diane Robertson: Our vibrant culture is the true gold of these hills

February 27, 2015 — 

In recent columns, George Boardman and JoAnn Rebane take Nevada County folks to task. Mr. Boardman seems to imply that we’re likable hicks, and Ms. Rebane that we’d best get busy encouraging more logging, milling and other big exploitative industries lest our cities become ghost towns.

Neither mentions our vibrant culture. We have a wealth of talent here, and the connections and the professionalism to import what we lack. We have not one, but two classical music organizations, InConcert and MIM. We have at least five theater companies. We have musical performances in a wide variety of genres presented by the Center for the Arts, Miners Foundry and the Nevada Theater. We have literature readings. We have dance. We have three multi-screen cinemas, one of which shows the Met Live and National Theater Live. We have countless visual artists — painters, sculptors, potters. We have numerous festivals throughout the year, from blue grass to environmental film to storytelling. Access to any of these cultural events is not cheap, but it’s a great deal cheaper than in big cities, and it’s free for volunteers.

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Karen Smith: Well, done, Mr. Scofield

February 27, 2015 — 

Rich Scofield describes his Other Voices column as an apology to his teammates at The Union.

It is actually a love letter to his career and all the teammates he has enjoyed over the years. Well, done, Mr. Scofield. Enjoy your retirement as that Ol’ Man River keeps rolling along. And thanks for your efforts (and your teammates’) in getting the paper out for all of us to read and discuss.

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Mary Anne Davis: Offering a few hours of help could change a child’s life

February 27, 2015 — 

Would you give an hour or two of your time each week if you knew it would make the difference between an elementary school student succeeding in school ... or not?

Any one of us who has been in any school in America has seen the children who aren’t the high achievers — who struggle along barely passing from grade to grade, usually because their math or language arts skills aren’t strong. Maybe we identify because we were once one of those kids. Classrooms are full of children who all learn in different ways, yet teachers are expected to teach them all in the same way in the same amount of time.

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Hemig: Why newspapers are, and will always be, important to our community

February 27, 2015 — 

I can’t tell you how many times since I arrived last year that I’ve heard people say, “I get my news from the Internet.”

The Union’s print and online publications are seen by more than 40,000 people per day. That’s a lot of people, but that’s not everyone in western Nevada County. When I talk with non-readers, the Internet appears to be their go-to source for news.

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Inyo County Board of Education: Inyo Register story on McAteer full of exaggeration, falsehoods

February 27, 2015 — 

We write this letter today to set the record straight regarding Inyo County Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Terry McAteer, concerning an article submitted to The Union by the editor of the Inyo Register. Unfortunately, Inyo County is ill-served by this libelous article against our superintendent and your former county superintendent.

Let us be clear: This article is filled with gross exaggeration and outright falsehoods. In fact we wish to highlight several of the transformative results that Terry has helped create during his seven years as the educational leader in our community:

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Nevada County clerk-recorder’s office issues report on electronic poll book

February 26, 2015 — 

The digital age has changed the way people around the world process information. So, too, has digital evolution changed the way elections are conducted in Nevada County, according to Clerk-Recorder Gregory J. Diaz.

The careful introduction of Electronic Poll Books (e-poll books) in the county has already benefited voters, taxpayers and the team of election workers who run the polls, tabulate the votes and assure that the elections are conducted lawfully.

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Andrea Heyser: Grass Valley City Council goes against will of the people

February 25, 2015 — 

There is something that I do not understand about the replacement of one of the council members in Grass Valley. Aren’t the council members supposed to represent the people of Grass Valley and not the original council members themselves? If the council requests volunteers to interview for the Grass Valley council member vacancy, then the chosen one will represent those who chose him, the existing council members, not the people.

The people have already chosen the individuals they want, one may be indisposed by the criminal system, the other is willing and waiting for her new assignment on the council, one made by the people she is to represent. Her name is Jerri Glover.

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Lorraine Reich: What is going on?

February 25, 2015 — 

Look up! Is anyone concerned as I am about what is going on in the skies overhead? Just look up and you will see — for example, today, Feb. 18 — lines being painted across our skies by airplanes which are spraying chemicals into the atmosphere. What is going on? These are not contrails which disappear within moments of the jet passing. These sprayed trails stay in the sky for hours and by this afternoon there is likely to be a thin coating across the entire sky blocking out the sun’s normal rays. I’m concerned.

This pattern occurs several times a week, every week. Who is doing this, why is it happening, and why are U.S. citizens not voicing their concerns?

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Whitney Anderson: Amazing support after Highway 49 accident

February 25, 2015 — 

​My daughter and I were involved in a very serious car accident on Feb. 7 on Highway 49 near Oak Drive. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all persons and passersby involved in our rescue from the car. Our hearts are heavy with sadness for the other driver who did not survive and we are praying for her family and friends during this sad time. May God bless their family.

​My daughter and I are both home now and are working on rehabilitation. We want to specifically thank the people who stopped and helped us escape our smoking and damaged car. We have no idea who the men were and we hope that some of them see this thank you. One car with several gentlemen stopped, checked in with me, and then physically took my daughter, who could not walk, out of our car and placed her in theirs. Thank you so much for your gentle rescue of her.

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Nancy McDonald: The definition of treason?

February 25, 2015 — 

“Hey ISIS! Just want you to know that we are coming for a fight. We will be there on the 6th of April with 20,000 men. Don’t worry — we will be gone by Ramadan. We will be stationed on the ridge overlooking the valley — 5,000 men there, 3,000 setting up a base, 4,000 by the town of Mosul. We are hoping that you don’t set up any IEDs or land mines. We understand your plight, that you don’t have jobs and that is why you fight. Would midnight basketball help? Group therapy sessions? What would you like us to do for you?”

Now, I am not a lawyer, but isn’t revealing our plans to the enemy aiding and abetting the enemy? Isn’t that the definition of treason? What is this president thinking?

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