We have been waiting for immigration reform, of some kind, for more than two decades. We have pleaded for it, asked our representatives in Congress to support it, urged action at every opportunity, any time there was even a small hint that progress was possible. Our friends and neighbors by the thousands have been hoping for some resolution of their status, to let them at last emerge from the shadows. We all have waited and gotten nothing but squabbling, accusation and political posturing in the face of obvious and urgent ...
How do you do that? The voters have very narrowly approved Initiative 1351, to lower class size across the range, K-12. The measure of course came without instructions, or anything resembling a funding mechanism, so legislators must be befuddled. New estimates from the House Appropriations Committee says the initiative, which requires the state to hire tens of thousands of new teachers and school employees, will cost around $5 billion over the next five years and $2 billion per year thereafter. That doesn’t include the cost of new schools or future ...
We sat down Friday afternoon to cheer the Mission Ridge Ski & Board Resort for its adept use of cold air, hard work and keen snowmaking equipment to cover its slopes and yet again be the first ski area in the state to open for the season. We logged onto The Ridge website and clicked on the webcam link to see what’s up, and to our great joy didn’t see a thing.
My bicycle takes a rest during the cold weather. It doesn’t complain, mind you. It is a willing and trustworthy machine, and works as well in a cold November as a blazing July. It’s the pilot who grows shy of starting the day with a frozen face and inoperable fingers.
Modern political strategy rests on seeking the most flamboyant and attention-grabbing way of doing nothing. You must appear to be decisive in indecision, consequential in ineffectiveness and earnest in amorality. That is the right thing to do.
So, are voters stupid? That’s often the question asked by the losing side in the last election. Since the voters did not choose us, the thinking goes, they must suffer from cognitive disabilities, or perhaps they were wooed by the clever and devious schemes of our enemies, who know they will not win on the merit of their ideas, but only by subterfuge and tricks to lure the gullible masses.
As they say in business, we are at the mercy of the supply chain. Having the best apples, hay and potatoes in the world is well and good, but not worth much unless the products can reach the customers. Close the West Coast ports and that’s it — half the customers in the world cut off.
They celebrate already. Based on a flood of leaks, it is certain President Obama soon will take executive action granting a temporary reprieve from deportation for illegal immigrants with close family ties in the United States, and visas for high-tech workers and others. Action may come as soon as next week, says The Wall Street Journal. The president says the action is justified by the perpetual do-nothing Congress, fiddling away in a time of obvious need.
Labor disputes with all the ugly trimmings — strikes, walkouts, lockouts, slowdowns, threats, etc. — are often baffling to the innocent bystanders. You can’t choose sides, not knowing what makes those people so angry. You know they fight over profits and who gets what, but right and wrong are in disguise. When both sides look rich, we ordinary people will never understand.
For reasons I can’t quite explain, I recently found myself sitting in a rental car on a freeway, somewhere near the center of Houston, Texas. This is one of the biggest and busiest cities in the hemisphere and so I wasn’t surprised to be trapped in the vast regional gridlock, crammed in with a few million people on six lanes of hell. Time is money, I thought, as I tried to figure out which of a hundred dash buttons turned on the radio. Good thing for them I’m not getting ...
City limits are arbitrary things. There’s nothing natural about a city’s’ boundary ending at the shore of a river, for instance. If there is a natural city limit, better it be where city ends and country begins. Far better that those receiving municipal services be constituents of the municipality.