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Opinion / Letter To The Editor


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  • Take time to thank our dispatchers this week

    Dale Wagner|Updated Apr 16, 2024

    This week, from April 14-20, we join the nation in celebrating National Telecommunications Week. This important occasion gives us the opportunity to recognize and appreciate the vital contributions of our dedicated dispatchers in law enforcement. Our dispatchers play a crucial role in ensuring the safety and effectiveness of our operations. They are often the first point of contact during emergencies, handling calls with professionalism, empathy and efficiency. Their ability...

  • Elect Conroy to represent Eastern Washington

    Updated Apr 16, 2024

    Carmela Conroy gives Eastern Washington voters the unusual, important opportunity to elect a foreign policy expert as their U.S. Representative. As a foreign service officer for 24 years, she served in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Norway, New Zealand and Tom Foley’s Japan office. Voters must weigh foreign policy experience much more than usual in their 2024 voting decisions. Foreign policy expertise is also prerequisite for ending the tragic Israeli-Palestinian conflict that Trump has accepted uncaringly. Like retiring Rep. Cathy M...

  • Dams save environment while making power

    Updated Apr 2, 2024

    Let’s have a look at the benefits of dams to human life with a special focus on Grand Coulee Dam. It is the largest hydroelectric producing facility in the U.S. and provides enough electricity to power about 2 million households every year, 68% of all Washington state households. Please keep in mind too, that it is just one of 145 hydroelectric dams in the state. Grand Coulee dam prompted the creation of the “U.S. Bureau of Reclamations Columbia Basin Project” which converted 670,000 acres (over 1,000 square-miles) of forme...

  • Polluters should pay for carbon

    Updated Mar 26, 2024

    “Polluters pay. People get a carbon cashback” sums up the impact that the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act would have. The EICDA was re-introduced in the House of Representatives last September and is currently languishing in committees. Briefly, the EICDA puts a price on carbon at the source of the fossil fuels – the well, mine, or imported tanker – therefore making it simple to administer and uniform across sources of greenhouse gases. It would take the revenue from the price on carbon and distribute it to every i...

  • Public records must remain open and accessible

    Updated Mar 5, 2024

    A special report urges the mobilization of civic leaders, organizations, businesses and all residents to work together to save the state’s Public Records Act. The report is available online for viewing and downloading at washcog.org. State lawmakers and the courts continue to whittle away at the landmark public records law, which was adopted overwhelmingly with a citizens’ initiative in 1972. Since then, state legislators have passed more than 650 exceptions and have tried repeatedly to exempt themselves. Residents argued in...

  • Support levy for Water Park

    Updated Jan 30, 2024

    Each season, Ritzville Water Park employs an average of 15 residents (mostly high school age) and is a popular stopping point to thousands of local and out of town visitors. The facility boasts two swimming areas, a diving board and a large yellow waterslide, making it easily recognizable. Ritzville Water Park is now more than two decades old, and has not had an opportunity for the featured attractions, such as the waterslide and diving board to be restored or replaced. Due to the age of the facility and being constantly...

  • Watch your language on climate change

    Updated Jan 30, 2024

    As climate disruption becomes more evident, more people are empowered to advocate for climate mitigation. This advocacy is positive, but climate advocates must choose their words carefully for their message to be most effective. Advocates need humility because we don’t have all the answers. For instance, while the climate science fundamentals are well-established, it is a relatively new field and probably still holds plenty of surprises. Humility is necessary because renewable energy development will make mistakes, just l...

  • Breaching dams isn't the answer

    Updated Jan 9, 2024

    Monumental Dam has a concrete fish ladder. Its lock works for barge. Rather than breach the dam – or others on the Lower Snake River – how about using a tunnel-boring machine to notch an on the side an additional zig-zag fish ladder? The answer is cooperation or compromise – not contempt or hard-headed, extremism on breaching. Sen. Murray, Gov. Jay Inslee and President Joe Biden need to step back and look at the whole picture. Errol Kramer Odessa/Ritzville...

  • Reintroduce bill to ban dwarf-tossing

    Updated Jan 9, 2024

    Persons who have dwarfism (also referred to as “little people”) frequently experience employment discrimination. Although they can perform any job task well – often needing only a stool – employers frequently reject them during interview. Bars and strip clubs exploit the resulting financial problems by hiring “LPs” for dwarf-tossing events, where bar patrons pay to physically throw an them in front of a crowd of laughing and jeering customers. LPs very frequently have skeletal (especially spinal) issues requiring multiple su...

  • Stop the Israeli-Hamas war in Gaza

    Updated Dec 19, 2023

    Christmas season is upon us. From the time we were children, most of us heard carols, sung songs, sent cards with , “Peace on Earth, good will towards men.” Yet, we humans continue the violence and killing. This year it is especially terrible because it is taking place near the headquarters of religions that claim peace and where Jesus was born. Concerning the war on Gaza, experts keep saying that the situation is very complicated and solutions do not come easily. The conflict has been ongoing for years. Nevertheless, the...

  • You should cover Hudson's presidential bid

    Updated Dec 19, 2023

    I am writing to express my concern regarding the lack of attention given to non-partisan candidate Anthony Hudson in your coverage of the presidential race. As a blue-collar man with a message that has resonated with over 60 million people, Hudson represents a significant portion of the American population that deserves to be heard. It is disheartening to witness the prevalence of media bias in the current political landscape. While the media plays a crucial role in informing the public and shaping public opinion, it is...

  • Israel-Hamas war an example of religion gone bad

    Updated Dec 5, 2023

    The Israel/Hamas situation is a perfect example of how losing touch with our religious and political traditions makes all of us sniveling idiots. Religion gone bad is the reason Jews and Muslims are at each other’s throats today, and the reason why American Christianity is complicit with all the inhumanity. Israel’s lop-sided military holocaust in Gaza is a flowering public relations disaster for democracy, Israel, Joe Biden, American Jewry, the American war industry, monopolist media companies, religion, the Republican par...

  • 'BIG WIRES' Act provides power benefits for Americans

    Updated Nov 28, 2023

    The Building Integrated Grids With Inter-Regional Energy Supply (BIG WIRES) Act is a promising bipartisan bill in Congress that offers a wide range of benefits: reducing the risk of electrical power outages, lowering carbon emissions and energy costs, and increasing national security. The recent gas pipeline rupture in our region gave many of us a taste of how a blackout in winter would feel. Extreme weather events damaging power stations and overloading the grid are on the rise. The bill will require each U.S....

  • Health care professionals work to make us healthier

    Updated Nov 28, 2023

    Physicians and health-care workers across the state have experienced unprecedented stress and hardship over the past several years. Despite this, physicians in Davenport and Odessa took and continue to take the time to help train medical students. We are thankful to the extensive network of physicians throughout Eastern and Central Washington who believe in “paying it forward,” because of the training they received from preceptors and mentors when they were medical students. We’ve learned that despite added layers of complexi...

  • Fake news isn't the problem

    Updated Sep 26, 2023

    Our problem is not that there is too much “fake news.” Our problem is that too many people believe it. Fortunately, there is an “antidope” — epistemology , the theory of knowledge or “how we know what we know.” Epistemology is a good solution because it has validity tests to distinguish between justified belief and opinion. And this distinction is central to most disagreements. Epistemology has simple and clarifying definitions, e.g., Truth has the property that corresponds with facts and reality. Can you imagine how m...

  • Trump fulfills emotional needs for supporters

    Updated Sep 5, 2023

    Early in Barack Obama’s presidency, Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell announced his most important achievement would be to make Obama a one-term president. Ever since, McConnell has opposed anything Democrats have introduced, even if originally Republican-proposed (e.g., Mitt Romney’s Massachusetts health plan predating Obamacare). This includes blocking legislation Obama and subsequent Democrats continually propose to rescue lower- and middle-income workers, many unjustly left behind. Lately, McConnell has...

  • Tourist enjoys downtown Ritzville

    Updated Aug 29, 2023

    Last week, I received this card and wanted to share it with all of you. “Hello Mayor Kadlec… My name is Loraine, and I am traveling across the U.S. with my friend, and we stopped into your quaint town. Our first stop was the Railroad Station (the museum was closed), but we really appreciated the placards with descriptions! The history of the building posted was AMAZING! The folks at your drugstore (where I purchased this card) were so friendly & helpful!! I also happened to meet the lady that is in charge of the Senior Cen...

  • Fire, other personnel saved Ritzville

    Updated Aug 8, 2023

    If you are unaware of what happened July 17 or the scope of the tragedy, take a short road trip up West Main Street onto VanVleet Road and down Gun Club Road. Look all around you and across the freeway. It is hard to believe our Ritzville Volunteer Fire Department, with the help of other fire departments, the employees of the city of Ritzville, the police from our city and county, and countless others were able to control and put out that fire. The next time you see a person who works for the city, volunteers for the Fire...

  • Brainwashing before our eyes

    Updated Jul 18, 2023

    Solomon Asch performed some exceptional psychology experiments in the 1950s. His experiments showed the power of conformity when people sometimes agree with a group’s opinion, even when shown evidence the group is wrong. In the 1950s, Asch could not determine whether his subjects consciously changed their views or whether social cues unconsciously skewed their perception. In 2005, Gregory Berns answered this question by repeating Asch’s experiment with brain scans. Berns found the brain’s visual center changed what it perce...

  • Don't give into late-night cravings

    Updated Jul 11, 2023

    Why should Americans sit on our hands while fast food companies push late-night feasting with messages like “Give in to your cravings.” Late-night eating is against all good sense and medical advice. Unregulated advertising is one of the reasons why our morbidly obese people cannot work for a living and cannot easily participate in democracy. We need to return to truth and responsibility in advertising. Kimball Shinkoskey Woods Cross, Utah...

  • Tax cheats aided in debt ceiling fight

    Updated Jun 20, 2023

    The federal debt ceiling crisis was averted, but tax cheats benefited. The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 contained $79 billion for the Internal Revenue Service, $45 billion of it was to audit individuals or businesses making over $400,000 annually to catch those not paying their taxes. Funding cuts for many years rendered the IRSlargely unable to audit the wealthy. Currently, the amount in taxes owed but not paid totals nearly $7 trillion over a decade; three-fifths is held by top 10% of taxpayers, more than one-quarter by...

  • Urge Congress to reform energy permits

    Updated Jun 6, 2023

    The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, which allocated $386 billion for clean energy, is a major breakthrough in our nation’s struggle to address climate change. The IRA can decrease our carbon emissions 40% by 2030, putting us within general range of our targeted 50-52% emissions reduction by then. But unless we speed up the permitting process for the transmission lines needed to convey the clean energy, we’ll realize only about 20% of the projected reduction, according to a Princeton REPEAT Project study. It now takes 4.3...

  • Republicans threaten democracy

    Updated May 16, 2023

    President Joe Biden is seeking re-election. I wish he were younger and I might favor other Democrats — Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and 2020 presidential contenders Elizabeth Warren and Cory Booker come to mind. But Biden’s record is impressive and he may have the best chance of winning the presidency. Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has opposed everything Democrats proposed from the day former President Barack Obama was inaugurated, even if originally Republican-proposed. And Republican opposition has...

  • Recognize school board members

    Updated Jan 24, 2023

    One of the many blessings of living in rural, Eastern Washington is working with great people. In this month of recognizing the selfless sacrifice of school board directors, I feel privileged to work for and with 10 of the best who give so much in support of the 570 students and 120 employees of Lind-Ritzville Cooperative Schools. Without compensation, these community members serve as essential makers and guardians of policies that keep schools operating and students learning. Through intentional, collaborative efforts they a...

  • President Biden deserves some credit

    Updated Nov 21, 2022

    Give President Biden some credit for mid-term election Democratic successes when most everyone predicted otherwise. Instead of focusing on himself, he quietly avoided states where he’s unpopular and helped Democrats win Pennsylvania, where he grew up and is popular. He presented us with our country’s greatest challenge: to save our democracy from autocratic ambitions of the MAGA faction that dominates the Republican party. He inherited a mess and time spent cleaning it up detracted from time for positive accomplishments. Our...

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