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Kids bored with summer? Not those at the Fair

The statement, along with its companion question, mark summer’s advent as reliably as the yellow jacket that shows up as soon as the burgers emerge from the barbecue.

“I’m bored. What can I do?”

Summer break spawns spontaneous celebrations for students — the opening sequence of the movie “Dazed and Confused” captures the essence nicely — but it generates rather less enthusiasm among their parents.

This is especially so for mothers who work from, or at, home. They are the advance troops, as it were, tasked with the hapless mission of trying to stave off incipient boredom among the ranks, many of whom aren’t happy until they’ve spilled a bottle of glue all over the dining room table or inflicted on a sibling a wound that requires stitches.

The very notion of summer as punishment is more than a trifle childish, of course.

Power plan neglects nuclear

The Clean Power Plan that President Obama unveiled recently was the sort of ambitious idea we expect from a president who’s pondering his legacy rather than his next campaign.

The plan’s centerpiece is a call for the U.S. to cut carbon emissions from power plants by 30 percent, based on 2005 levels, by 2030.

That’s not exactly revolutionary — we’re nearly halfway to that level now, before the president’s plan is even in effect.

But it’s certainly a worthwhile goal.

Get a jump on Rally changes

The Hells Canyon Motorcycle Rally is an economic boon for Baker City.

But not for every business.

We’re pleased, then, that business owners, Rally organizers and others got together last week, just a couple weeks after this year’s event, to talk about ways to address concerns that some merchants have expressed.

The difference between hunters and lion-killers

I like to hunt.

But I wouldn’t shoot an African lion.

Unless the beast was bearing down on me and Marlin Perkins wasn’t there to save me and I didn’t think I could get back to my Land Rover before the lion plunged its teeth into my neck.

Then I might make an exception.

Letter to the Editor for Aug. 5, 2015

Prohibition is ‘politics as usual’ for conservatives

Through the Herald I have been following our city council’s politically motivated approach to the legal marijuana issue. Their proposed prohibition of both medical and recreational sales is nothing more than a placebo, placating the abundant conservative attitudes of this corner of Oregon.

There’s just no excuse for this lack of judgment

The scenario would induce panic in any parent.

And cause apoplexy in anybody who frets about the government flexing its legislative muscles with an immodesty that would cause Arnold Schwarzenegger to blush.

Here’s the situation:

In Oregon, 15-year-olds can undergo sex reassignment surgery not merely without their parents’ permission, but without even their parents’ knowledge.

And if that fact hasn’t quite set your blood to a figurative boil, surely this one will:

Letter to the Editor for August 3, 2015

Lawmakers did some good for rural Oregon in recent session

The Oregon Legislature currently holds a Democratic majority to the dismay and vociferous negative comments of many fellow conservatives. But, all is not bad and the system is not broken and Salem does not deserve extreme criticism for the 2015 session.  

Many good bills were passed, many were bipartisan, some remain yet to be resolved (transportation) and most all representatives and senators are honorable people just trying to do the best to represent their constituents. 

Not all bills were for the west side. Rep. Cliff Bentz and Sen. Ted Ferrioli did a fine job in looking out for Eastern and rural Oregon. One bill in particular, HB 2075 favored rural Oregon with equal support from liberals and conservatives, passing the House and Senate with a 90 percent majority.

HB 2075 was submitted by Oregon Aviation Industries to increase aviation funding by $20 million over the next six years by raising aviation fuel tax by 2 cents per gallon. Nearly all of the funds are focused on rural Oregon for aviation economic development, rural air service, grant matches, infrastructure, emergency preparedness and safety. 

Our team spent many months at the Capitol and we were all very impressed with the committee hearings, work sessions, citizen input and relationships developed with legislators. At least on this bill, rural Oregon was heard loud and strong and it was a big win for the east side. If you couldn’t be there in person to observe the process, the State provides video archives and the progress of bills. www.oravi.org/HB2075 is one good example of democracy in action for the benefit of rural communities. 

Gale “Jake” Jacobs

West Linn

Oregon Aviation Industries

Executive Director


Guest Editorial: New leader equals new beginning

From The (La Grande) Observer:

There is usually always a certain degree of optimism when a new leader steps into the top slot of an organization, whether it be a local civic club, military unit or the presidency. A new leader carries the connotation that a new beginning is now at hand and the future will be a bright one.

Letters to the Editor for July 29, 2015

Registered sex offender expected a certain level of scrutiny

Since my release from prison in New Mexico on July 16, I have sought to remain in compliance with the law and to keep my behavior lawful and ethical. In good faith, I have been striving to do all that is necessary to put my life back into order after my wrongdoing sent me away five years ago.

  I was placed on the bus on Thursday July 16, in Las Cruces, to arrive in Baker late on Friday night. That was too late to accomplish anything before the weekend, but I was resolved to register with the State Police first thing Monday morning, which I accomplished.

Guest Editorial: Advisory councils need a fix

Editorial from The (Bend) Bulletin:

Oregon’s coordinated care organizations, charged with delivering medical care to residents who qualify for the Oregon Health Plan, the state’s Medicaid program, are charged with listening to those they serve as they spend the state’s money. They do so with advisory councils which, by law, must include members who are OHP clients.

Or at least they try to include OHP clients on the councils. Finding willing participants has proven difficult, even though some councils pay their client members to take part.

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