Opinion, Analysis, Discussion
Jim Firth, in his letter to the editor, juxtaposes the Tea Party with a litany of government policies/programs, which seem to represent contradictions. He concludes that they (“want-to-be patriots”) are obligated to accept the judgment and rule of law of the “majority” that our democracy requires.
It might surprise Mr. Firth that we do not have a democracy but a constitutional republic. The vehement debates between the Federalist and Anti-Federalist during the Constitutional convention, May through September of 1787, centered on the fears of an overpowering, usurping central government. Additionally, the fears of majority rule, argued against so eloquently by James Madison in Federalist No. 10, is what our founders sought to avoid in the Constitution of the United States. The horror they would express if they were to witness what we in fact have today.Learn more »
Since last summer, I have been a supporter of a reconfiguration of personnel and operating procedures of the Alta Sierra Property Owners Association’s board of directors.
This involved attending meetings, letters to The Union, and letters to the board itself. In my first letter to the board, it was responded to by Paul Hoefler, the board president, and he closed with: “Again, thank you for your input. Please stay involved.” So, to properly stay involved, I joined ASPOA for the first time since we moved here in 2004.Learn more »
Kudos to all of the residents of Lake of the Pines and South County for their generous donations to the Nevada County Diaper Project and to those who donated their Holiday Market WOW points.
For every 1,000 points donated, the diaper project receives $20 to purchase diapers.Learn more »
Many sparkly thanks to the person or people who created those lit-up flowers along the Alpha Building’s wall in Calanan Park, Nevada City.
Right under “our” huge town Christmas tree — they’re gorgeous! Lighting up that wall makes the whole place seem more welcoming and cheerful. It’s such a surprise how much a small gesture can change things.Learn more »
Women of Worth provides an invaluable service to our community. Sandy Escobar Schmidt and her great volunteers do a wonderful job helping families in need, working to help ensure a healthy family life and safe shelter when families need it most. Their ReShop has wonderful quality products, great prices and is beautifully arranged, a great place to shop for the holidays!
Thank you, Sandy, and crew for your dedication and for all that you do!Learn more »
On behalf of several veteran families of Nevada County, we would like to shout out a big “thank you” to Gary Grandfield with the Gold Country Gobblers.
The local organization of the National Wild Turkey Federation once again showed its appreciation for Nevada County veterans by donating turkeys, which were bought locally and will be handed out throughout the holidays.Learn more »
A heartfelt thank you to everyone who donated time and money to Thanks to Give this year.
One hundred fifty meals and flower bouquets were delivered to seniors and disabled adults throughout the county on Thanksgiving Day. Special thanks to Nevada City SPD Market, Foothill Flowers and Country Copy for their generous discounts, to the staff at the Community Center and to all agencies who helped get the word out, to the American Legion for use of its kitchen facilities and a huge shout out to all the volunteers. We appreciate your ongoing support of this worthwhile project.Learn more »
My sincere thanks and congratulations to Dr. Lawrence Gold for his clear, simple, comprehensive description of a fundamental issue that affects all humanity.
His “Other Voices” (Nov. 30) in The Union, entitled “How Do We Decide What’s ‘Fair?’” outlines the issue of fairness with three approaches: sameness, deservedness and need. Gold quotes another article by Arthur Dobrin, D.S.W., which appeared in Psychology Today, describing these three ideas. These two authors make clear the differences in our decisions, depending upon which of the three options we employ. Gold recommends the need for altruism, a value absent in most political decisions regarding fairness.Learn more »
Whether it’s the possibility of a magnetic levitation train or the hyperloop idea proposed by Elon Musk, founder of PayPal, Tesla Motors and SpaceX, the route of potential alternative designs for California’s putative bullet train invariably follows Interstate 5 from just west of Bakersfield to the San Francisco Bay Area.
That’s why the Thanksgiving week ruling by a Sacramento Superior Court judge forbidding the state’s High-Speed Rail Authority from tapping billions of dollars in voter-approved state bonds for the project represents an opportunity and not a setback.Learn more »
It is with great sorrow that I must report the passing of Richard “Doc” Halstead. Doc suffered what we believe to be a heart attack at the Northridge in Penn Valley over the holiday weekend.
He was a homegrown Nevada City boy, raised in his father’s drug store on Broad Street and schooled at Mount St. Mary’s in Grass Valley. He served with the marines as a medic in Vietnam, hence the nickname “Doc.”Learn more »
I think the Nevada City Boardwalk should never have been put in. I see the boardwalk all day, every day, and I never like what I see. I would never sit there.
In San Francisco, I’ve seen those boardwalks, and they make sense for urban areas. All we have provided is an expanded area for the low life, idle and bored people to congregate and sell drugs and waste away their days. If it wasn’t for former Councilwoman Reinette Senum’s daily cleaning and watering, the place would be a wreck in no time. What happens when she gets tired of being the janitor? If the police don’t patrol and sit there for hours, it would be even worse. What a waste of police time. We don’t need this image in town.Learn more »
Maybe it’s time to stop the steady stream of handwringing over how poorly America’s schoolkids, and California’s in particular, perform in subjects like math and science and realize they are actually doing OK, even if there’s still plenty of room for improvement.
That’s the takeaway from 2011 test scores in the Trends in International Math and Science Study, an exam given by some states and 46 other countries and provinces. The 2011 results, latest available, were released earlier this fall. (Because only nine states administered the actual TIMS tests, researchers at the National Center for Education Statistics used data from other tests to compare.)Learn more »
When my kids accused me of not being fair in dealing with their disagreements, I said, “Don’t use the word ‘fair.’ Use the word ‘equitable.’” Soon, however, equitable, repeated often enough, became as annoying as fair and took longer to utter.
Despite the choice of words, what we really needed to encourage and reinforce was the human sense of altruism now recognized as being demonstrably present in children as young as 18 months.Learn more »
Carol, of Washington, wrote a very literate piece a while back about why she supports gun ownership. She references several sites that she thinks backs up her claim that violent crime is higher in the U.K. than the U.S. even though gun ownership is more restricted in the U.K. than in the U.S.
When I read that in her article, I thought, “Really?” So I checked the sites she referenced and continued to dig deeper. I found this. Going around the Internet is a piece that makes the claim that the U.K. is a much more violent place than the U.S., and the sites that Carol mentions are given as the proof. Based on what I found, I doubt that Carol went to those sites. That’s because you’d have to go deep into them to find relevant crime statistics.Learn more »
Over the past few weeks, I have spoken to many Alta Sierra residents. The picture I get is very clear as to why they are so upset with the former board of directors. They are upset that so much money was spent without any input from the members of the Alta Sierra Property Owners Association.
For several years the annual legal expense budget for ASPOA has been $1,500, maybe occasionally $2,000. In 2012, the BOD overspent that budgeted amount. In 2012, they spent $10,000 on legal fees. In fact, during 2012 and the first eight months of 2013, the BOD spent a total of $25,000 on legal fees to explore the option of converting ASPOA to a mandatory HOA.Learn more »
The so-called Affordable Care Act, better known as “Obamacare,” was a disaster to start with and gets worse every day. It’s such a confusing mess with ever-changing targets that even the Obama Administration itself seems to be winging it on the biggest social policy shift since the New Deal.
Last week, the president committed a stunning about-face by announcing that insurance companies could temporarily continue offering insurance plans that were going to be canceled because they don’t meet the “essential benefits” requirements of the Obamacare plans. As many as 10 million people were scheduled to lose their plans as of Jan 1. Now they aren’t — or at least might not be — because it’s not clear the president had the authority to change the law without Congress.Learn more »
The local office of the Salvation Army does a great job of providing assistance to needy persons in our community. The local Council of the Knights of Columbus helped out this year by providing two dozen new coats for boys and girls. Coats for Kids is a nationwide program of the Knights of Columbus, working with great organizations like the Salvation Army, to provide new, warm coats to needy children.
Please be generous when you see the Salvation Army bell-ringers outside local stores this Christmas season; they are helping all of us to help others.Learn more »
My small rat terrier was found cowering in the shrubbery alongside Banner Lava Cap Road by a young lady named Kristi, who took the time to stop, put the vehicle’s hazard lights on, coax my dog to her and then drive to three homes before finding mine.
All of this on her way to work, no small feat considering the volume of morning traffic on this busy road.Learn more »
I am so grateful for our convenient local book store, The Book Seller.
I urge those of you living in this area to support this local business instead of going to Amazon or other Internet sources for books. If Book Seller does not have the book you want (easily learned from a local phone call), it will make sure that it has it very quickly — probably at least as quickly as it might take for Amazon to get a book to you.Learn more »
The Hand Crafting Justice Sale, hosted for the past eight years at Foothill Flowers of Grass Valley, will take place online this year.
Empower women with every purchase when you chose a handmade items made by enterprising women artisans in 22 countries in the developing world. Choose unique soft toys, unusual bags or scarves, indigenous pieces of art or holiday items from http://handcraftingjustice.org.Learn more »
Praise is due for Sierra Family Medical Center on Tyler Foote Road.
I have not had such good care since the 1950s and early 1960s! It is well worth the 30- to 40-minute drive from Grass Valley to this caring, competent, honest and very fine clinic.Learn more »
Sierra Harvest would like give a big thank you Gale Pylman and Soroptimist International of Grass Valley for the $1,500 they contributed to help fund our new educational farm.
Their contribution will go a long way in helping small farmers in our community by supporting our farmer training program as well as connecting kids with where their food comes from.Learn more »
There was a minority of vehement opposition at the last Nevada City Council meeting regarding the continuing use of the Nevada City Veteran’s Memorial Building as a cold weather shelter. The city council passed a resolution three years ago to provide a cold weather shelter at the veterans’ building. Councilman Duane Strawser pointed out that the resolution is still in place and didn’t see a need to change it.
In spite of rude comments and heckling by a few veterans’ building neighbors, Sierra Roots, a newly formed nonprofit, presented its plan to use trained volunteers to monitor the cold weather shelter during freezing weather. Their outline provided that all would be supervised with respect to the neighbors’ concerns. No one else present proposed an alternative plan.Learn more »
It’s not surprising that you’ve never heard about it. America has been fortunate enough to never have come face to face with it.
The “Chicago Rule” is simple: Never elect a politico from Chicago to be president of America.Learn more »
I gave a talk and book signing at Tomes early Saturday afternoon and was happily surprised by the attendance.
When I asked what brought them there, most people said they had read about it that morning on the Spotlight page of The Union. Not only do people read your paper, but they act on it. I did very well. Thank you.Learn more »
I was a Nevada Union miner from 1998 to 2002 and grew up in the great Nevada County.
I entered the military and served 10 years on submarines as a chemist and health physicist. Currently, I devote my time to other veterans by working at the Seattle Veterans Administration. This is not why I am writing.Learn more »
The typical response of the liberal denied … the “dog eared” race card gets played.
Ron Lowe, your desperation is showing. You see your president causing chaos and panic with millions losing health-care coverage due to Obamacare, and your misguided attitudes require that you throw out the old mantra that the Tea Party is racist when that claim has been without merit for five years. There is not, and never has been, a shred of truth about racism in the Tea Party.Learn more »
In July, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published a proposal on “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing.” The comment period ended Sept. 17, 2013. These land-use regulations give the agency power to dismantle local zoning.
Local governments will have to “take meaningful action to further the goals identified” of the right mix of economic, racial and ethnic diversity. Failure will result in a cut of Community Development Block Grants.Learn more »