Opinion Columns

Dave Glubetich: Clinton cannot be trusted

September 23, 2016 — 

Are you excited about the prospects of the first woman president of the United States? Will you be voting for Hillary Clinton in November? Helping to make history.

But what if everything you hear, read or see just doesn’t add up? Could a vote for Hillary be a huge mistake?

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Jim Firth: Hillary was wrong, but ...

September 23, 2016 — 

Hillary Clinton suggested that half of the Donald Trump supporters came from the “deplorable” baskets. As a candidate for president of the United States she should know that a comment like that will create immediate blowback, and it did.

Donald Trump managed to bring a new set of voters into the electoral process during the Republican Primary contests, and to many people’s surprise, actually won the Republican Presidential nomination. The new voters Mr. Trump appealed to certainly make an impact on the outcome, but who are they?

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Chris Enss: Transients act like schoolyard bullies

September 23, 2016 — 

During September transients set two major fires in Nevada County; one behind CVS Pharmacy and another on South Auburn.

I found a transient sleeping in the back of my pickup when I came out of Staples and was verbally abused when I asked the man to get out of my automobile. While patronizing another local business, I witnessed a homeless man trying to break into the vehicles belonging to the staff of that business and another sleeping on the bench outside the entrance at that same company. The police were called, but did not respond.

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Joyce Hoffman: With Grass Valley's approach, how long will our 'home' last?

September 23, 2016 — 

The Grass Valley Planning Commission wimped out by succumbing to the pressure of the true leader of our little city, Michael G. Colantuono. He is the attorney hired by the Grass Valley City Council to, seemingly, help in their efforts to completely Rosevillize Grass Valley.

The Grass Valley City Council’s mantra is “annex, build and develop land into taxable assets.” Their master planner is Mr. Colantuono who almost single-handedly dictated the decisions made recently by the planning commission.

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Jeffrey Dupra: The whole picture

September 22, 2016 — 

Last Saturday I watched and waited collectively with others in our community as the Auburn Fire spread rapidly into Empire Mine Sate Park. Collectively, we thought of those whose homes and lives lay potentially in harm’s way, and envisioned ourselves, our loved ones, our property, our possessions under threat of fire and smoke. Collectively, we weren’t surprised to learn that the fire had started in a homeless camp.

As this information became known, collectively we reacted.

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Carole Bryant: Why become an Elk? It's a Grass Valley legacy

September 21, 2016 — 

Grass Valley Elks Lodge #538, part of one of the oldest fraternal orders remaining in the United States, and is still operating their “original” lodge in Grass Valley.

The order is distinctly American and was chartered as part of the Benevolent and Protective Society of Elks. The Lodge was established in 1900 with a handful of prominent Grass Valley businessmen, politicians, mine owners and managers. Among them the colorful, accomplished and ever popular, engineer, John F. Kidder. He was president of the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad as well as the first Exalted Ruler of Grass Valley Elks.

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Tracy, Gini Ceresola: Randy Young saved our lives

September 20, 2016 — 

This letter is to recognize Randy Young for saving our lives.

We want to make sure that his children, family, friends and community all know what a hero he is and how he saved us when we had a bad accident.

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Kent Treiber: Yes, things have changed

September 20, 2016 — 

A recent column in The Union reminded me of my father. Beginning in his 60s, my father became fond of talking about the many changes in our country that distressed him. Now that I’m of advanced years, many of my contemporaries are doing the same thing.

I love this country and feel incredibly lucky to have lived here and in this time. That said, we are not, and have never been, perfect. I hope that we continue to strive towards a “more perfect Union.”

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Pauli Halstead: Nevada City community supports Streicher House

September 19, 2016 — 

Streicher House, on Gold Flat Road in Nevada City, the new community day center, has taken another step and is now open weekdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sundays from 9 a.m. to noon.

Streicher House serves our local homeless population and also others in the community who are undernourished.

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Hilary Hodge: Fire in Grass Valley too close for comfort

September 19, 2016 — 

On Saturday, my wife and I drove to Nevada City for lunch and saw smoke toward Grass Valley as we parked the car.

It was 1:56 p.m. I know the exact time because the restaurant we had planned to have lunch at was already closed, even though the sign said that the place was open until 2 p.m. I looked online for details about the fire and saw the words South Auburn Street and Empire Mine State Park.

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Roy Church: Can our economy grow when robots neither consume nor pay taxes?

September 18, 2016 — 

In his recent column in The Union, Darrell Berkheimer outlined how the financialization of the banking and investment industry has contributed to, and is prolonging our anemic economic growth. Not addressed and what neither presidential candidate has addressed, is how technology is enabling capitalism to require fewer workers.

There have been periods in the past where technology eliminated large numbers of jobs, only to create new and different jobs to fill the void. But things are different now.

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Dick Sciaroni: 'Protest' votes don't count

September 16, 2016 — 

Many Americans are dissatisfied with the candidates put forward by the two major parties. The percentages of Americans with negative views of Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton are at historic highs.

Some voters are considering the notion of not voting for either Trump or Clinton, seeing their decision as a “protest” against the state of presidential politics. This approach is as simplistic and it is wrong. Leaving the boxes for president unchecked will mean nothing. No one will take notice. The number of so-called “protest votes” will not be counted. The only vote that counts, the only vote that will make a difference, will be a vote for one candidate or the other, Trump or Clinton.

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Jacqueline Finley: Putting the genie back in the bottle

September 16, 2016 — 

My cousin, a California college professor, recently emailed me to say she believes that once the November election is finally over, the country will suffer from a collective case of PTSD.

I laughed when I read her message, but after some reflection, I think she has a point.

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Elaine Meckler: Hillary Clinton, fact or fiction, truth or lies?

September 16, 2016 — 

On “the wall” — At a rally in Cleveland, Hillary Clinton said: “Don’t let anybody tell you we can’t make it in America anymore. We can, we are and we will.” “But in order to do that, we can’t be talking about building walls or turning the clock back.”

But, just four months ago at a New Hampshire event in November, she was asked what she thought about securing the Mexican border? Her response was, “Well, look, I voted numerous times when I was a senator to spend money to build a barrier to try to prevent illegal immigrants from coming in. And I do think you have to control your borders.”

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Darrell Berkheimer: Ending racism is a community-wide issue

September 16, 2016 — 

Residents of the twin cities of Grass Valley and Nevada City occasionally appear to be patting themselves on the back for their many accomplishments. And they have good reasons to do so.

One of my early columns in The Union, published back in April, carried the headline The “gold” I found in Grass Valley. It mentioned but a few of the many services, activities and organizations that make this area a great place to live.

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Richard Cristdahl: Cellular phone towers impact property values

September 13, 2016 — 

Last year it never occurred to me that a cell tower could reduce the value of my property. I believe this to be true for most people, and my guess is around 75 percent of us don’t realize their property has been devalued up to 20 percent. This is changing rapidly as people are becoming aware.

The percentage of devaluation seems to rise proportionally to the higher awareness of this fact. The California Association of Realtors now requires you to disclose how far your home is to a cell antenna/tower when you list your property for sale. This action alone is speeding up the process.

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Norton Lehner: Why to vote 'No' on Prop 64

September 12, 2016 — 

Regarding the use of addictive substances, the population can be divided into three distinct groups:

Group A: Those who would never use the substance, legal or not.

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Peter Van Zant: Sierra wildlands too critical for petty politics

September 11, 2016 — 

I was taken aback by George Boardman’s Aug. 28 column, “Wild lands burn while special interests argue over what’s best for them.” The assertion that an argument over forest management and post-fire protocol is a cause of the fires is absurd. He does however identify two real reasons we have increased frequency and intensity of wildland fires.

Climate changes have effectively increased the fire season from summer/fall to almost year long. And, California is suffering from a five- year drought. These two conditions have resulted in weakened pine trees that are dying from bark beetle infestations that have killed over 66 million trees through the Sierra so far.

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Jo Anne Davis: Who are the Native Daughters of the Golden West?

September 9, 2016 — 

The Order of the Native Daughters of the Golden West is a fraternal and patriotic organization, founded on the principles of:

Love of home, devotion to the flag, veneration of the pioneers and faith in the existence of God.

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Don Rivenes: Fire danger and forest problems

September 9, 2016 — 

In response to the Aug. 28 column in The Union by George Boardman on fire danger in California: on the positive side he states that Tom McClintock’s advice that “all of the nation’s forest problems could be solved simply by logging more trees — live big trees as well as dead ones” goes too far.

He said that “a better idea for reducing fire risk would be a major program of controlled burns and forest thinning (removing small trees and brush) that would mimic the natural state of forests as we found them 150 years ago.”

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Jerry Henderson: No to hotel; yes to housing

September 9, 2016 — 

Do you want more congestion at the intersection of Brunswick and East Main? Do you want to remove affordable housing to make room for a fast-food restaurant and a bank?

The Brunswick East Main intersection is already racked with congestion. Now a developer wants to increase the traffic at this intersection by building a hotel, a bank, and a drive-through restaurant. Yes, you read that right. Another drive through restaurant in “Burger Basin.”

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Kate Laferriere: What action will you take?

September 9, 2016 — 

September is Hunger Action Month, when Feeding America and member food banks ask everyone in America to take action to fight hunger in their community, all month long.

Hunger exists in every county in the U.S., affecting 48 million Americans (1 in 7) including 15 million children. In 2015, 14,000 residents of Nevada County were identified as food insecure; lacking reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food. Interfaith Food Ministry (IFM) joins the Feeding America nationwide network of food banks in believing that hunger is solvable and fighting to end it.

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William Larsen: Worthy discourse

September 8, 2016 — 

Three recent columns in The Union deserve special mention. Each pertains greatly to the choice we will make in the coming election.

Dick Sciaroni’s insightful critique of the “Misguided Notions of Government” came first. No nasty polemic or attacks on patriotism here, just a straight-on look at the sane (and necessary) place of government in the modern world.

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Alan Archer: Celebrate the importance of literacy

September 6, 2016 — 

In the United States, more than 36 million adults do not read, write or perform basic math above the third-grade level, and tens of millions additional are at the elementary and middle school skill levels. People emigrating to the U.S. need to speak English in order to integrate. Without good skills, natural-born and immigrant alike are faced with the inability to compete for adequate jobs with which to raise their families. Low literacy skills are a “root cause” of unemployment, poverty, welfare and crime.

More than 700 million adults around the world are illiterate, two-thirds of them are women, and 60 million children are not in school, have dropped out, or are attending irregularly.

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Cynthia Schuetz: One fall can change it all

September 5, 2016 — 

Stay active! Stay strong! Stay safe! That’s what the focus will be at the Falls Prevention Coalition’s ninth annual community event from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sept. 21. The Coalition invites people 50 and over, adult children and caregivers to come to this free event.

After 10 years of educating people about how to reduce their risk of falling, here’s what we know: one fall can change it all! We hear stories all the time about how life changing a fall can be. And we know that most people think it can’t happen to them. “I’m careful” is a common refrain, as if everyone who falls isn’t. We can be careful as all get-out, but our risk of falling increases if our strength and sense of balance decreases ... or if we don’t have grab bars in our shower or tub ... or don’t have enough light in our home ... or take medications that make us dizzy ... or we continue to get on a ladder to clean out the gutters ... and the list goes on.

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Julie Reaney: Nevada County not serving its veterans

September 4, 2016 — 

It is beyond my comprehension that the county can find money for repeated legal challenges to their authority to make certain decisions, but it appears that it has not yet dealt in any effective way with serving veterans.

First, the delay in opening the new service center to veterans due to unanticipated obstacles then its inability to find sufficient funds (their self-imposed budget limit $460,000) for the necessary major rehab of the Bost House for homeless veterans in order to reopen it. Feedback from contractors stating that amount was way below the actual amount for the job. Hence, there were no contractor bids to rehabilitate what apparently is a wreck of a 145-bed facility for homeless veterans with focus on helping them receive housing after alcohol and drug treatment.

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Ralph Remick: Address the real issues with Middle East

September 4, 2016 — 

As stated on their website (http://www.bdsmovement.net), the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions Movement (BDS) is a Palestinian-led movement directed at Israel and companies doing business with Israel. They claim that Israel is the “big problem” in the Middle East with apartheid, colonialism, Palestinian persecution, imprisonment of children, disproportionate retaliation for outside attacks, and international collaboration with the industrial complex.

So the BDS movement spreads their cause through the media, street protests, discussions, and films.

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Sue Clark: Technical schmechnical, an old-school teacher learns hi-tech tricks

September 2, 2016 — 

Forty years ago, I was a young teacher not much older than my junior high students. I taught English at a Southern California junior high in Orange. Clicking around in 2-inch heels, nylons and dresses (we were not supposed to wear jeans), I hung out in the work room, high on the smell of purple ditto fluid.

Dittos, and the advanced skill of thermofaxing (burning a ditto original) occupied much of our break times. The dittos were then handed out to each of my English classes (average 33 per class) and heartlessly preserved my typos, much to the amusement of the students.

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Delia Hammons: One small step toward that dream

August 30, 2016 — 

I have traveled extensively in this country and in the world and have met wonderful people of all colors and ethnicities. I truly believe that we are one human family that God has created to live in harmony; that the differences are cultural and superficial, because under the skin we are all alike.

The diversity of humanity’s physical and intellectual aspects adds to its richness and texture. Isn’t nature a reflection of diversity? Doesn’t the universe mirror diversity? Isn’t it beautiful to live in a world with so much diversity?

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George Gomes: Disrespecting national anthem diminishes all accomplished

August 30, 2016 — 

To NFL players and others who tell us we “have to respect what Kaepernick did”... No, we don’t!

This is the flag ... Union Soldiers carried during the Civil War. Thousands died in order to free slaves.

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