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Credit card bill helps some, hurts some

The credit card reform bill that President Obama signed into law last week protects consumers from the most egregious traps that card companies set.

But the fact remains that the worst credit wounds are self-inflicted.

No law — not even the laudable legislation that Obama signed — can save people who consistently spend more money than they earn.


Government knows best?


We found out this week another of the sacrifices we’ll have to make in our quest to counter global climate change.

We’ll pay more for our new cars and trucks.

And we might have trouble finding models that can haul as many people and as much stuff as the ones we drive now.

Of course these might not seem like sacrifices for people who agree with President Obama, who announced Tuesday his plan to require the U.S. fleet of new cars and light trucks to average 35fi mpg by 2016.

But those aren’t the people we’ve been thinking about.

The people on our minds are those who are skeptical about the notion that humans are largely responsible for climate change, and that actions such as increasing cars’ fuel mileage will cool the planet.


Government knows best?

We found out this week another of the sacrifices we’ll have to make in our quest to counter global climate change.

We’ll pay more for our new cars and trucks.

And we might have trouble finding models that can haul as many people and as much stuff as the ones we drive now.


Get armory off the list

We don’t blame state government officials for looking at worst-case scenarios while they prepare for the significant drop in income that their agencies will have to absorb over the next two years.

It’s better to acknowledge that the worst is possible than to pretend it’s not and then have to explain to a skeptical public why you weren’t ready.


An option to ethanol

We’re pleased to see that the Oregon Legislature is working on fixing a problem of its own making.

The problem is the ethanol mandate that took effect last year.


A balanced approach on aspens

Aspen trees have little if any commercial value, but we sure enjoy watching their leaves dance.

And so we support the U.S. Forest Service’s continuing campaign to protect aspen groves on southern slopes of the Wallowas.

As is typical with deciduous trees, aspens rarely live for more than a century and a half. Groves can’t survive, then, unless there’s a steady supply of baby trees.


A great start

Any high school student would feel fortunate to start college with some credits already on his or her ledger.

But Blue Mountain Community College, together with Baker County high schools and Powder Valley High School, can do better than that: Students in those schools can start college with credits but without that nagging detail that clings to most college students:

Debt.


Students as teachers

Baker High School students spend most of the day learning, but it turns out these teenagers also have lessons to teach all of us.

Important lessons.

The notion that every person ought to be treated with respect, for instance.


Work with, not against

For many Baker County ranchers, the ability to graze their livestock on public lands is essential to their business.

It’s natural, then, that ranchers get nervous when they think their grazing privileges are in jeopardy.

But livestock owners will fare better if they maintain a cordial relationship with the BLM and other land-managing agencies rather than an antagonistic one.


Law gets rid of trash

We like any piece of legislation that appeals to everyone except people who have sexually abused children.

Such is the case with House Bill 2062. Every one of Oregon’s 30 state senators or 60 representatives voted for the bill.

Gov. Ted Kulongoski said he will sign the bill into law. It takes effect July 1, 2010.


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