The Wenatchee World

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Wilf Woods | New life for an old road

Senator Linda Evans Parlette’s special report to The Seattle Times this week was a renewed plea for the economic health of Stehekin to open the washed-out road to Cottonwood.

Wind subsidies blow this way

Wind power subsidies are at the crisis stage again. Our wacky Congress is dithering, swaying, offering then refusing, and tax breaks for many things hang in the balance, including generous financial backing for many windmills yet to rise.

The real civil war

Old habits die hard. The media are so enamored of the continuing (and largely contrived) story about the great Republican civil war that they fail to appreciate that the real internecine fight is being waged on the other side of the aisle.

Nothing to toy with

With the exception of a few Lego sets, the kids in my immediate family are past the age of wanting toys for Christmas. Am I grateful.

All we want is loaded ships

The people with clipboards and pens, paid to fill out forms and such, have a natural and understandable dislike of late-20th century technology. Think about the humble bar code, those odd thick-and-thin lines you see on just about everything you buy. A quick flash at the reader, followed by a mild confirmation beep, and you do in a fraction of a second what a human being once did for wages. You record the item, price and sale in a record, which itself once was kept by the career nine-key punchers ...

Another case for term limits

In 2010, Plymouth, Conn., was awarded $430,000 for widening sidewalks and related matters near two schools. This money was a portion of the $612 million Congress authorized for five years of the federal Safe Routes to School program intended to fight childhood obesity by encouraging children to burn calories by walking or biking to school. Really.

Wilf Woods | Expect the unexpected

The wavering jet stream has been the cause of our extreme weather of recent years, and we may see more of same, says Jeff Masters, meteorologist in the current Scientific American.

The question we can’t answer

Michael Brown’s death was part of a tragic and unacceptable pattern: Police officers in the United States shoot and kill civilians in shockingly high numbers. How many killings are there each year? No one can say for sure, because police departments don’t want us to know.

Make it safer — ban fireworks

During the Wenatchee Complex Fires of 2012, our neighborhood was on three different levels of evacuation over a five-week period. During the Colockum Fires of 2013, we returned to Level 1 evacuation until the wind shifted. These experiences have motivated me to research fireworks and the possible impact they could have on our county.

Middle Class looking for help

You are falling behind, but you knew that, didn’t you? If you are like the great many — a middle wage earner, family income somewhere near the halfway point between top and bottom — then chances are good you haven’t felt a big lift from the rising economy. Statistically speaking, middle class incomes are stagnating while the cost of the necessities of life — health care, food, housing and cellphones — is rising. Consequently, you represent a newfound political opportunity.

Wilf Woods | Celebrating our 63rd at the Windmill

For our 63rd anniversary, Kathy and I hosted a small family dinner at one of the few places that was operating in 1951. We chose the Windmill. It was a steak house then, and still is.

Sharratt’s fingerprints on state STEM initiative

Significant momentum is building in this state to support STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in public schools and our good friend Dr. Gene Sharratt and the Washington Student Achievement Council staff are playing key roles.

Editorial: Arena on the rise

Two years ago on this date we wrote about the Miracle on Walla Walla Street. Town Toyota Center, only months before on the brink of financial disaster and a $42 million bond default, had suddenly become a genuine, self-supporting public agency, paying its debts and moving forward to new sunlit uplands. This was thanks in no small part to voter-approved sales tax surcharges and strong municipal leadership.

Editorial: Buy local, and keep dollars here

We all make choices. What we choose to do, where we choose to spend our money, has a local impact, whatever we do. We can choose to shop and spend at local businesses, so a share of our money stays local and spreads benefits to our friends and neighbors. Or, we can shop online and send our money away. It will benefit someone we don’t know, someone far, far distant.

Really enjoy the holidays

I’ve never been drawn into Black Friday. Maybe that’s why over the years, I’ve grown more and more disgusted with stores that have decided to open on Thanksgiving Day.

The right stuff for retail patriots

“Hello. You have reached GoAheadAndBuyIt.gov, your federally sponsored source for consumer acquisition encouragement. To speak to an adviser, please press 1 followed by the pound sign, followed by 2, followed by the star sign, now.”