Opinion, Analysis, Discussion

The cost of health care

May 6, 2015 — 

In response to an April 25 letter, which was responding to my letter of April 21, Vicki Bannister is correct: people on Medicare, if they can afford it, usually purchase supplemental health insurance from private “for-profit” companies.

This is mainly because Medicare covers only the oldest, and therefore the sickest and most expensive, among us. If everyone could be covered by Medicare, instead of by the huge number of “for-profit” insurance companies, there would be enough money to negate the need for a supplemental policy.

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Michael Ferguson: Sour grapes over Lake Wildwood Clubhouse

May 6, 2015 — 

I read with interest your article on the Lake Wildwood Clubhouse. I have to ask why your reporter decided to quote those who opposed the new clubhouse. The only positive reference was attributed to the general manager.

Why would the three people who seemed to be sore losers not want their name published? In order to write this letter, I am required to provide my name, and I have no qualms about publicly voicing my opinion. Or maybe, it is that they provided some incorrect information that The Union failed to notice. There is indeed a special assessment, but the quote made it seem that a check is due May 1. The association provided the opportunity for homeowners to choose paying the assessment up front, or with manageable monthly payments.

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Andy Burton: Campus Life quietly doing good work with Nevada County teens

May 6, 2015 — 

Being a teenager is no walk in the park. Right at that time in your life when you’re actively sorting out how the world works, and how you personally are going to make your way through all of life’s decisions and choices, you are also challenged on just about every other front.

Family and parent relationships, high school and graduation, job searches and career planning — it can all be overwhelming and difficult to process.

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Karen Hayden: Western Nevada County Community Defense wildfire prevention project to continue

May 6, 2015 — 

With Nevada County experiencing its fourth year of drought, wildfire is a major public safety concern for residents, especially homeowners.

The U.S. Forest Service actively works to protect life and property from catastrophic wildfire risks on national forests. Here on the Tahoe National Forest in western Nevada County, the Forest Service and partner agencies continue to work on wildfire prevention by reducing fuels in support of community wildfire safety, while also enhancing the health of the forest.

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May 6, 2015 — 

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Kent Treiber: Freedom "of" religion also means freedom "from" religion

May 5, 2015 — 

I strongly support your freedom to practice your religion of choice.

There are limits of course; you don’t get to do things like sacrificing virgins. Recently there has been legislation in many states about “religious freedom.”

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Wanda Baggett: Education at its best

May 5, 2015 — 

Kudos to Lois Johnson who helped to bring Scotten School, Peace Lutheran Church helpers, and a Community Orchestra together to make a wonderful learning experience for 125 kindergartners.

They learned about the classic “Carnival of the Animals” composition written by Camille Saint-Saens over 150 years ago.

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Thomas Elias: This 'tax' may be about to rise

May 5, 2015 — 

If a committee of legislators or U.S. Senators whose most influential members were under criminal investigation ever considered raising taxes on Californians by significant amounts, protests would be non-stop and cacophonous.

But with the seriously sullied state Public Utilities Commission about to raise electric rates for the bulk of this state’s residents, the silence from the public and from consumer advocates is deafening.

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Heidi Hall: Let's appreciate the tough work of motherhood

May 5, 2015 — 

Mother’s Day approaches, and with it comes breakfast in bed, bouquets of flowers, or maybe home projects brought to completion. These are lovely ways to celebrate the great work of motherhood.

My thoughts are drawn, however, to the heroic work mothers need to do today to raise their kids in safety and to ensure that they have good opportunities in their adulthood.

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R.L. Crabb: It Takes a Village Idiot

May 5, 2015 — 

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George Boardman: Real world economics and western Nevada County retail development

May 4, 2015 — 

Residents of western Nevada County who are skeptical of ANY retail development seem to believe they can ignore the iron laws of economics and dictate who will set up shop here.

The latest manifestation of that comes from Nevada City, where a town meeting was held last week to discuss a possible formula, i.e., chain store, ordinance. As in keeping them out.

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Bob Perry: Ben Carson to announce bid for presidency

May 4, 2015 — 

May 4 marks a significant day in the history of our country when Dr. Ben Carson, one of the most principled and brilliant men in our nations announces his intention to run for The President of The United States. There will be a dramatic shift in the tone of the Republican primary contingent once this man announces.

Dr. Carson’s rags to riches story of achievement and philanthropy fueled by education embodies what every American and immigrant wants for himself and his children. Through the efforts of an uneducated, unrelenting, caring mother, “Benny” went from last in class in school in inner city Detroit to Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital at age 33. His no nonsense, straightforward conservative approach to offering solutions rings of the days of Ronald Reagan. His (early years) life story is depicted in the popular movie “Gifted Hands” in 2001 the Library of Congress selected him as one of 89 “Living Legends and in 2009 “Dr. Ben” was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the U.S. highest civilian honors.

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David Briceno: Bring back the parties

May 4, 2015 — 

Political parties are dying. They’ve been dying for years. The decline-of-parties theme has persisted since the late 1960s. Though the public image of political parties has eroded considerably, what lies behind their actual decline today?

There’s no question that Republican and Democratic party members have been, and are presently, exiting California’s two major political parties in droves. Americans are increasingly declaring themselves as Independents — those not associated with a party.

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Stan Meckler: It's time for Convention of States

May 2, 2015 — 

Earlier this month, I went to the Nevada County Tea Party meeting to listen to a guest speaker who would be talking on an interesting subject. I also had the opportunity to talk with many old friends that were with me when I started the local Tea Party in 2009.

The speaker was Pastor David Whitney from Pasadena, Md. His subject was to discuss the pros and cons of Article V of our Constitution. Unfortunately, the presentation was highly slanted against having a convention of states. We were allowed to ask questions, but were not allowed to share our position as the ground rules stated that there would be no debate. This is the first time in the history of the Nevada County Tea Party that, we the people, were not allowed to express our opinion.

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Bob Martin: Article a disservice to Lake Wildwood residents

May 2, 2015 — 

The article in the April 22 issue of The Union illustrates what I believe to be one of the major faults with the news industry today — its proclivity, not to just report facts, but to manufacture controversies. Why has this become the norm?

The article began as straightforward reporting of information of general community interest concerning the public hearing on Thursday at the Nevada County Planning Commission on the proposed new clubhouse at Lake Wildwood. It continued with general information and a few quotations from Lake Wildwood’s new general manager. That took a total of 61 lines of print.

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Michele Spencer: How shall we contain the cost of a college education?

May 2, 2015 — 

Talented children in this country are being discouraged from furthering their education because of its skyrocketing cost and their family’s shrinking incomes. Given these circumstances are beyond their control, we have an obligation to the younger generation to do something about it.

Isn’t access to higher education a public good, essential for maintaining the middle class and strengthening our country’s economic future? Don’t we need a highly skilled workforce to compete globally now and in the future? If your answer to those two questions is yes, then why have we tolerated a 1,120 percent increase in the cost of a college degree over the past 30 years? Who is to blame? Is it due to a lack of state or federal funding or because of it? Is it due to an increase in college administration expenses? Are college salaries too high? What should be done?

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Izzi Tooinsky: In support of Milhous

May 2, 2015 — 

I read the article on Milhous with grief and sadness. First, for the kids who experienced abuse, and second for the reputation of Milhous itself.

I have worked as a substitute teacher for three years at Milhous Boys Ranch. I have seen hundreds of our state’s most broken boys come through their doors. I have personally seen the care, the thoughtfulness and even devotion of the staff at Milhous towards the psychological healing of their clients. From what I have observed on the inside of this establishment, I want to give my support and appreciation for the incredibly challenging and absolutely essential work that Milhous Boy’s Ranch has taken on.

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Charles Wilder: Watch the meter spin or let the sun shine in?

May 2, 2015 — 

In recent months, neighboring counties have chosen to drive cannabis growers indoors, because some folks don’t like the smell, looks, or people involved. However, in my experience as an electrician, this has some consequences that affect almost everyone else.

The use of enormous amounts of electricity to grow plants (any plants) indoors is the most inefficient/expensive way to grow anything. And the costs are staggering. The cost to the small medicinal grower, who instead of using the sun, is forced into using high intensity lights, could see his PG&E bill easily triple for just six plants.

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Thomas Elias: Most of gas price surge likely due to gouging

May 2, 2015 — 

THOMAS ELIAS

California Focus

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Our View: Let's support the sport that's become its own local tradition

May 2, 2015 — 

The California Gold Rush has been bringing people to Grass Valley/Nevada City area for more than 150 years, whether folks were actually mining for gold here in the 1850s or have since made the trip decades later to take in the history of those who did.

But as any of us who are fortunate enough to call it home know, there is a long list of reasons for people to visit western Nevada County, from the breathtaking beauty of the Sierra foothills and our beloved Yuba River, to our historically preserved downtowns that keep our history intact and on full display.

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It takes a village idiot

May 2, 2015 — 

R. L. Crabb

Cartoonist

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Dick Harmon: Invest in dams

May 1, 2015 — 

The “Our View” column of April 25 missed the boat. It does say to forget the bullet train, but does not say to put that money into building dams.

Building dams will not solve the problem of today’s drought, but could help prevent future water problems.

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Bob Williams: Sign of inconsistency in Grass Valley's rules?

May 1, 2015 — 

Several years ago the First Baptist Church, Grass Valley (Ridge Road, across from Nevada Union High School) contracted with a company to replace the church’s sign.

Since the high school had a digital sign, the same company that provided it was contacted. A contract fee and design were agreed upon with the company getting the city permit. Since this sign was like the one Nevada Union had, they felt it would not be a problem. Well, it became a problem because the church is in the city limits and the high school is in the county.

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Albertus Dorland: Consolidated Fire District should stop subsidizing the city

May 1, 2015 — 

I applaud the actions taken by the board of the Nevada County Consolidated Fire District and Chief Jim Turner in regards to the City of Nevada City and their Fire Department.

As someone with fire experience, and as a resident in Consolidated’s district, I believe it is appropriate for the district to stop subsidizing the city through manpower and equipment.

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Jack Moorhead: Liberal slant in the paper?

May 1, 2015 — 

Interesting — someone just recently noted the addition of Amy Goodman’s column since she has been an almost regular weekly columnist for several years. I might point out that I once asked the present editor to please consider adding a good conservative columnist like Charles Krauthammer or George Will to somewhat balance the opinion page with Ms. Goodman and other liberal voices. His reply was that they might be a good read but apparently he was not interested. Also, it might be that now is also the time to ask about the policy of limiting letters and voices to once every 30 days, as one particular recent candidate for Congress seems to have an almost weekly contribution, if not two or three times within the past month or so showing up as an almost regular contributor.

Jack Moorhead

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Jim Hemig: The end of an era

May 1, 2015 — 

There is no TV guide in today’s newspaper.

I’m sorry to be the one to tell our interested readers this, but last Friday was the last TV guide you will see in The Union.

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Dick Phillips: Time to privatize the US Postal Service?

April 30, 2015 — 

The United States Post Office is a white elephant the taxpayer should no longer subsidize.

It has been losing $5 billion a year for many years. Last year, it lost $5.51 billion.

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Jean McMellon: A caring car center

April 30, 2015 — 

I am a senior citizen who has always been leery of taking my car to a mechanic. Not anymore!

Tom’s Car Care Center at 13383 Colfax Avenue has become my trusted auto mechanic. Tom and his associates are great, caring of their clients, professional and very fair in what they charge you. If anyone is looking for a reliable, trustful auto repair shop, head for Tom’s Car Care Center. You can’t go wrong. I am one very happy customer and appreciate how Tom and his associates make me feel when I have any kind of car problem.

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Joan Mosley: Quilt Guild announces scholarship recipient

April 30, 2015 — 

The Pine Tree Quilt Guild is pleased to announce the awarding of our 2015 scholarship to Kiana Kraft.

With an excellent academic record, high level of community involvement and multiple artistic talents, she is indeed a worthy recipient. Kiana is currently a student at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, where she is majoring in graphic design and art direction. Her ultimate goal is “to use my graphic design skills and artistic insight to help spread awareness about today’s social justice issues, with a focus on women’s rights ... I want to be part of the positive message media movement, using visual communication to spread ideals of self worth and mutual respect instead of exploitation.”

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Byron York: 2016: yes, it's early, but pay attention now

April 30, 2015 — 

It’s conventional wisdom that the 2016 Republican presidential race is at such an early stage that the polls don’t matter. They’re just a measurement of name recognition at this point, some observers say, and the only people really paying attention to the campaign are reporters and hard-core party activists.

Maybe that was true in earlier years. But it doesn’t seem to be the case now. “One thing about this election — Republicans are paying attention,” says a GOP pollster not affiliated with any campaign. “They are very concerned about who the nominee is going to be, and the idea that what a candidate says now doesn’t matter could not be further from the truth.”

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