August 27, 2014

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Editorial
Reaffirming our American values PDF Print
Saturday, August 09, 2014 8:00 PM

Immigration and border security issues are demanding a lot of our attention as we debate the pros and cons of legal and illegal additions to America’s population.

It is easy to forget America is a nation of immigrants, and always will be. The vast majority of immigrants are good people. They come here voluntarily looking for a better life for themselves and their families. Who can blame them for that?

No one seems to have a problem with legal, documented immigrants. The problem is with the flood of uninvited, illegal immigrants. Who do you know that complains about the number of foreign children brought here via legal adoption?

There are human tragedies all over the world. Billions live in terror, without food, clean water and sanitation. The message cannot be: send us all of your unwanted people without any restrictions.

Many people are suspicious and resentful towards those who come illegally. We’d be more tolerant if it didn’t appear the illegals were coming mostly for free government money, free health care and other free benefits.

Many lower-middle-class citizens see the immigrants taking away their minimum wage jobs, leaving them to survive below the poverty level. Many of the illegals even qualify for government aid that isn’t available to current citizens. Illegal workers even send money home to their families.

 
Why gas taxes are a taboo topic PDF Print
Saturday, August 02, 2014 8:00 PM

In a 2013 report, The American Society of Civil Engineers said more than 30% of America’s major roads are in poor condition and rated one in nine of the nation’s bridges as structurally deficient.

This negligence of maintenance and repair can cause an increase in travel times, damages to vehicles and it can cause accidents that result in injuries and fatalities.

After a harsh winter, it is clear Wisconsin’s state, county and city roads and bridges took a beating. Many people wonder, will it take a major tragedy, like a disastrous bridge collapse to get action from the State Legislature.

Non-partisan polls in Wisconsin show that residents and consumers simply don’t like gas taxes and because of that, Democrats and Republicans don’t want to talk about raising fuel taxes and don’t want to debate it as a campaign issue.

With many state races uncontested, why would candidates want to poke a bee’s nest? With consumers unhappy, legislators won’t deal with infrastructure upkeep issues until they are forced to.

Several articles on the subject have appeared in newspapers and I talked to former state legislator Jim Holperin of Eagle River for his insights and perspective.

 
Rep. Jim Jordan set to visit Van Wert Co. PDF Print
Saturday, August 02, 2014 8:00 PM

A month ago, Commissioner Lichtensteiger and I were having a conversation about how to breathe new life into the Van Wert County Republican Party. It would seem that in a county leaning nearly 80% to the right, any production under the Republican banner should be generating several times the interest and attendance of those cozy lunches of recent gatherings past.

Some proposed changes we kicked around included more inclusive meeting times and venues. Lunch meetings, for example, have the effect of eliminating most working people. And since most non-union working people tend to be conservative, that’s one big chunk of potential Republicans that can’t assemble.

And if the working middle class could assemble, they might not feel comfortable doing so at a country club – not everyone likes pretensions intermingled with their politics. It would serve Republicans well to divest themselves of that image of the Party of the Wealthy anyway. Personally, I’d rather the Party meet at the Junior Fair Building in the evening.

But first and foremost, we agreed that what the Republican Party here vitally needs is a dynamic speaker or two. On that front, I had one person on my wish list – U.S. Representative Jim Jordan. The Congressman from Urbana represents the neighboring 4th District, which includes Lima.

 
State legislature addressing opioids and unemployment compensation PDF Print
Saturday, August 02, 2014 8:00 PM

This summer, bipartisan study committees will be meeting to discuss two large problems our state is facing: opioid addiction and unemployment compensation debt. Hearings on these subjects will be held throughout the state this fall in August and September.

This summer’s committees are named:

- Law Enforcement Perspectives on the Drug Epidemic & Its Impact on Families Study Committee

- Unemployment Compensation Debt & Reducing Burdens on Businesses Study Committee.

 
It’s the journey, not the destination PDF Print
Saturday, July 26, 2014 8:00 PM

What if you could see into the future and you could preview your life for the next five years? Would you really want to know what’s going to happen to you and your family in advance?

Before you say yes, ask yourself if it would depress you to know the bad things that were going to happen. Wouldn’t you feel cheated missing the delightful surprise of the good things that are bound to happen?

The thought of predicting the future fascinates many of yes. We can make educated guesses, but the fact is, no one knows for sure what will happen in the future.

In a similar vain, American author Dorothy Fisher once wrote, “It is not good for all our wishes to be filled; through sickness we recognize the value of health; through evil, the value of good; through hunger, the value of food; through exertion, the value of rest.”

When a new year begins, experts attempt to predict the trends. Some do it for pure entertainment. Others are paid big bucks to give investors and business leaders a head start. Many pregnant couples opt to wait to find out the sex of their child, adding to the excitement.

If fortune tellers were legit, they would all be rich…winning all the big lottery jackpots. We want to believe there is a pot at the end of the rainbow. Life is full of mysteries and unexpected surprises.

Medical researchers may offer the best hope of peeking into the future. They are finding ways to predetermine if people are predisposed to serious illnesses, such as cancer, heart disease and other life-altering ailments.

People must decide. Do they want to know their future? The answers may be good, or bad. Part of the beauty of life is the uncertainty.

Would you read a 500-page mystery novel if you knew the secret ending in advance? Are movies as good when you have already seen the ending? Would you pay $2,000 to attend a major sporting event if you knew who was going to win?

The present is the gift. It’s not the destination that thrills us, it is the journey getting there. What we really crave, and what keeps us motivated is the excitement and the suspense of tomorrow. What’s just around the corner.

Last Updated on Sunday, July 27, 2014 7:41 PM
 
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