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Sound advice

Having a wildfire destroy your home is bad.

But this is worse: You don’t have insurance.

Fires burn more rural homes than they used to. This is hardly surprising — there are both more fires and more rural homes.

Nor has this trend slipped unnoticed past the probing eyes of insurance adjusters.

Job 'creation'

We beg your pardon.

We have a confession to make.

We’re afraid that we’ve contributed, through our news coverage, to the belief that Oregon’s state government is just about, figuratively speaking, down to its last nickel.

But now we have conclusive proof that this isn’t so.

In the past week or so, the state has created one job and filled a second that had been vacant for several years.

The combined annual salary for the pair? About $220,000.

A trifling amount in a budget that exceeds $10 billion, right?

But wait, there’s more:

The state didn’t advertise either job.

There were no candidates except the people hired.

And both of the new employees are state legislators.

Save our SRO, Part 2

It seems that if we want to continue to assign a Baker City Police officer to work at the high school and middle school, we’re going to have to foot the bill with local dollars.

And this we should do.

The school resource officer program is a resounding success.

Stimulus signs

We doubt we were alone in feeling overwhelmed when we read the numbers Congress and President Obama were tossing around last winter during the debate about the federal stimulus package.

Even Bill Gates probably has to adjust his mental calculator when he’s confronted with, say, $787 billion.

That amount seems to us more a conceptual number — like the speed of light — than a real one.

But now tiny droplets of that monumental sum are trickling into places such as Baker County, and in denominations we can easily comprehend.

For instance: $113,000.

Clean up food laws

It’s too bad hundreds of people had to get salmonella, but apparently widespread diarrhea is sometimes required to provoke Congress.

We’re pleased, though, to see that our representatives seem determined to pass food safety laws that better protect the public from salmonella and other potentially fatal afflictions.

Councilors go too far on the recall

The Baker City Council has had a rough summer.

Councilors seem to be getting along better recently, however — on July 28 they unanimously approved the first two readings of a pair of ordinances that had provoked arguments this spring.

More cash for clunkers

The U.S. Senate topped off the “cash-for-clunkers” program last week, just before the program burned its final fumes.

Although, come to think of it, the term “topped off” probably isn’t the most apt way to describe spending $2 billion.

It’s OK to give infants some space

Three babies, ages six months, four months and almost three months, have died in Baker County since May 21.

This is a terrible trio of tragedies.

Save the Steak Feed

We doubt we were alone in our disappointment at the news that the Durkee Steak Feed will not happen this year.

No steaks?

No cowboy pan bread?

Welcome Shriners

When the East and West Shrine football squads take the field in Bulldog Memorial Stadium Saturday afternoon it will be another step in one of the most successful fundraising efforts in the United States.

This year’s contest is the 57th annual East-West game. Since 1981 the game has raised approximately $65,000 annually for the Shriners Hospital for Children in Portland.

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