>Baker City Herald | Baker County Oregon's News Leader

Baker news NE Oregon Classifieds Web
web powered by Web Search Powered by Google

Follow BakerCityHerald.com

Baker City Herald print edition

view all Baker City Herald print publications »

The Baker City Herald is now online in a Replica E-edition form and publishes Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Current subscribers have full access to the E-edition.

View Paper

If you are not a current subscriber, subscribe today for immediate access.

Subscribe


Recent article comments

Powered by Disqus

Home arrow Opinion

Personal stories the guide to one day in Dallas

By Jayson Jacoby

Baker City Herald Editor 

I went back in time this week and what a curious journey it was.

My destination was a day rather than a place.

Nov. 22, 1963.

Until Sept. 11, 2001, and with the exception of the monumental events that attended the nation’s birth in the 1770s, it was perhaps the singular day in American history.

For many people, including some of those who served as my tour guides, I suspect that that day, when president John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, retains its unique status in their memories even after the terrorist attacks a dozen years ago.

I talked with several people who were in Baker that November day. Most were high school students.

Fifty years is a considerable span, of course.

Call this period by its other name — half century — and it seems longer still.

 

The days when we truly unite

They are the days, some tragic and some triumphant, that make the “United” in “United States” more than a political slogan.

They are exceedingly rare, these days.

A compelling case can be made that America has experienced just three such days in the past half century.

One of those happened exactly 50 years ago today — Nov. 22, 1963, when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas.

On July 20, 1969, the nation again watched, equally transfixed but this time by joy and awe rather than sadness, as Neil Armstrong stepped onto the surface of the moon.

On Sept. 11, 2001, we looked on, incredulous, as the Twin Towers crumpled.

What these days have in common, besides engraving their scenes in our collective memory, is that each almost instantly suppressed the grievances and societal debates that characterize our free society.

We shared, however briefly, an experience that elevated our commonality as Americans above our party affiliations or political beliefs.

We get back to bickering, of course.

This annoys us at times, to be sure.

But would we really prefer a different system?

We rail against the seemingly juvenile obstinance in Congress, and wonder why we ever elected these bozos.

But ultimately we appreciate that we can replace the bozos if they finally exceed our patience, that we can influence the direction of our country.

It’s unfortunate that a monumental tragedy sometimes is needed to remind us of these truths.

But on days such as today, when we remember one of these terrible events — one now two generations in our past — perhaps we can muster just a bit of that national unity.

We can resume our important arguments about Obamacare and other matters tomorrow. But for today we ought to celebrate America, and Americans.

 

Letters to the Editor for Nov. 20, 2013


Early Learning Hubs: County, newspaper downplay threat 

The Baker City Herald’s editorial board has made the same mistake as Commissioner Fred Warner in thinking Early Learning Hubs (ELH) are a repackaged program with a new name and more money. They are not. These hubs do not replace existing services, nor do they replace the funds needed to run existing services. ELHs are a brand new layer of educational bureaucracy.

But then, the distribution of false information is how these hubs were sold to Commissioners Warner, Kerns and Stiff last March.

To set the record straight and correct Friday’s misguided opinion piece:

 

Obama’s belated apology


We’d be more inclined to accept President Obama’s apology for his empty promises regarding the healthcare reform law if he hadn’t dithered so long in making his mea culpa.

And even then it took another week for the president to make his apology meaningful by taking a tangible step to try to fix his mistake.

After admitting that his now infamous refrain during debates about the Affordable Care Act — “If you like your health plan, you will be able to keep your health plan” — was false, the president announced Thursday that the estimated 4.2 million Americans whose insurance policies had been or would be canceled due to provisions in Obamacare would be able to renew those plans for at least one year.

The president finally got it right.

Except the problems with his blunders persist.

Health insurance officials said the president’s reversal could disrupt the marketplace and cause higher premiums.

Considering that records from the Department of Health and Human Services written in 2010 noted that millions of people could lose their policies due to the healthcare reform law, neither the president nor Obamacare’s backers in Congress can plead ignorance. Little wonder the apologies ring hollow.

 

No conspiracy in learning hubs


Do you want all children in Baker County to be healthy, happy and ready to learn to read when they walk into a kindergarten classroom for the first time?

Yes, that was a rhetorical question.

Of course we all want this to be the case.

And yet a statewide campaign to achieve that goal not only has failed to gain universal admiration, but Baker County’s Republican Central Committee has passed a resolution urging county commissioners not to participate in that campaign, even though it could bring more public dollars to the county.

(Earlier this week a state board decided not to choose the regional hub, which includes Baker, Malheur and Umatilla counties, for a one-year pilot project. What will happen with the three-county plan is not clear.)

 

Letters to the Editor for Nov. 15, 2013


Don’t want health clinic in a grocery store

Upon reading the article in Monday’s paper that St. Alphonsus is opening an Express Care clinic within an Albertson’s supermarket, I feel this is the most ridiculous action that the store could have taken. They are inviting people that are sick with contagious conditions to enter the supermarket through the main entrance, and make their way through customers to get to this clinic. If that’s not enough, in the clinic if the patient has a wait to see the physician they are going to issue them a pager to do shopping while waiting.

Now I’m not naive enough to believe that there aren’t ill people in the grocery stores every day, but to invite them in to be treated for such conditions as the flu, strep throat, sore throat, lice, cold sores and many other contagious conditions. And then encourage them to shop while waiting to be examined, handling groceries, produce, meat, baked goods and other consumables that the public is expected to purchase, take home and feed to their families, is wrong.

In this day of MRSA and other such highly contagious conditions that are hard to treat, it’s bad enough having accidental exposure at medical facilities without having intentional exposure at the grocery store. I see this as nothing more than St. Alphonsus attempting to expose the whole community to contagious conditions as a means of increasing its revenues.

Therefore my family and I will no longer shop at Albertsons, intentionally exposing ourselves to every communicable disease that comes along through the purchase of intentionally contaminated grocery items.

This would have been a better situation if the store had installed an isolated entrance and exit to this clinic thus minimizing the number of contagious patients entering the grocery area and handling groceries.

Bruce Morrison

Baker City

Worried about putting more sick people in enclosed space

While I laud the reason for a clinic in Albertson’s I don’t like the practicality of it. I have a strong background in public health and the thought of pulling more folks into the store who are there only because of illness is a dangerous and potentially hazardous practice. I realize we meet up with ill folks all over the city and in any travels we may take, but this will be a purposeful increase in an enclosed space AND they will be given coupons so they may shop in “my space” while they wait to be seen.

Yes we meet them in clinics too but we are usually in a clinic because we too are ill. That may be great for Albertson’s but not so great for my health. I will shop at Safeway. 

Iva Mace

Baker City

 

Scrambled seasons: Spring mixes with autumn


Autumn tends to be the most banal of seasons around here but this current version has gotten up to quite the dickens.

I was over on the breaks of the Snake River last week, immersed in fall.

I was wearing a red-and-black, all-wool hunting coat (warmer than manmade fleece but also considerably scratchier).

I had a bolt-action rifle slung over my shoulder, an elk tag in my backpack, and a keen-bladed knife in my pocket which has not touched blood in many years.

It was not cold, but the air had a proper autumnal chill.

Then I saw a flash of bright orange about 100 feet ahead, conspicuous among the whitish gray chunks of limestone littering the steep slope.

 

Letters to the Editor for Nov. 13, 2013


Big government keeps feeding the fat cats

In one of his Texas stories, Elmer Kelton distinguishes between barn cats and house cats. Barn cats live in the barn where they are expected to keep the mouse population down. They are never fed, stay out in the barn, and pretty much have to fend for themselves. House cats, on the other hand, live pampered lives in the warm house with all of their needs supplied.

He then points out that for most of American History, its people pretty well looked out for themselves. They took care of their own needs and took pride in never accepting charity or handouts. Even the free land of the Homestead Act was purchased with several gallons of sweat.

People nowadays have no problem with accepting government handouts, only now they’re called entitlements. One of President Obama’s campaign materials last fall was how a woman named Julia had all of her needs met at each stage of her life by one government program or another.

But Julia is just an ordinary-sized house tabby; there are some tiger-sized felines out there. Wall Street bankers know that their institutions are “too big to fail,” so no matter how badly they screw up, the taxpayers will bail them out. Al Gore and his renewable energy buddies are real gravy lickers. They receive huge subsidies from all levels of government, and enjoy mandates which require that their product is purchased no matter how inefficiently it is produced. Farm subsidies were enacted to help the small farmer survive the ups and downs of that way of life, but the great majority of farm subsidies go to “small farmers” like the Archer Daniels Midland Company and TV mogul Ted Turner.

These corporate fat cats much prefer Big Government to a smaller one, as big governments have lots and lots of goodies to pass out. And in our current setup, the bulk of those goodies go to those with good political connections. If we had a small government, as we did for most of our history, those house cats might actually have to work for a living. 

Pete Sundin

Baker City

Blood drive is truly a community effort

In September Baker County held the Red Cross Blood Drive, which was a huge success. We exceeded our goal on both days.

I feel compelled to send a big thank you not only to the donors, but to the businesses and volunteers that made it such a success. As strange as it may seem, giving blood has become a social event. Gathering friends meet and visit and, due to the generosity of these businesses and organizations, can have a snack together.

Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut and Subway donate food. The Haines Mutual Improvement Club and the Haines Methodist Church Ladies bring cookies, and the Cattlewomen donate beef broth. But that’s not all. The Calvary Baptist Church and Nazarene Church donate their facilities for the drive. Baker Sanitary Service picks up the trash and about 20 local people donate their time to help with registration and serving the food. And thanks to the Baker City Herald and The Record-Courier our advertising is free.

As you can see, the blood drive truly is a community effort for a very good cause. My heartfelt thanks to all who helped.

And now we have another blood driving coming on Nov. 18 and 19 at the Calvary Baptist Church at Third and Broadway. I assure you that you will have a good time and some good snacks if you come. And you will feel good about donating.

Call me for an appointment at 541-523-4650.

Colleen Brooks

Blood Chairman

Baker City

 

Letters to the Editor for Nov. 13, 2013


Big government keeps feeding the fat cats

In one of his Texas stories, Elmer Kelton distinguishes between barn cats and house cats. Barn cats live in the barn where they are expected to keep the mouse population down. They are never fed, stay out in the barn, and pretty much have to fend for themselves. House cats, on the other hand, live pampered lives in the warm house with all of their needs supplied.

He then points out that for most of American History, its people pretty well looked out for themselves. They took care of their own needs and took pride in never accepting charity or handouts. Even the free land of the Homestead Act was purchased with several gallons of sweat.

People nowadays have no problem with accepting government handouts, only now they’re called entitlements. One of President Obama’s campaign materials last fall was how a woman named Julia had all of her needs met at each stage of her life by one government program or another.

But Julia is just an ordinary-sized house tabby; there are some tiger-sized felines out there. Wall Street bankers know that their institutions are “too big to fail,” so no matter how badly they screw up, the taxpayers will bail them out. Al Gore and his renewable energy buddies are real gravy lickers. They receive huge subsidies from all levels of government, and enjoy mandates which require that their product is purchased no matter how inefficiently it is produced. Farm subsidies were enacted to help the small farmer survive the ups and downs of that way of life, but the great majority of farm subsidies go to “small farmers” like the Archer Daniels Midland Company and TV mogul Ted Turner.

These corporate fat cats much prefer Big Government to a smaller one, as big governments have lots and lots of goodies to pass out. And in our current setup, the bulk of those goodies go to those with good political connections. If we had a small government, as we did for most of our history, those house cats might actually have to work for a living. 

Pete Sundin

Baker City

Blood drive is truly a community effort

In September Baker County held the Red Cross Blood Drive, which was a huge success. We exceeded our goal on both days.

I feel compelled to send a big thank you not only to the donors, but to the businesses and volunteers that made it such a success. As strange as it may seem, giving blood has become a social event. Gathering friends meet and visit and, due to the generosity of these businesses and organizations, can have a snack together.

Domino’s Pizza, Pizza Hut and Subway donate food. The Haines Mutual Improvement Club and the Haines Methodist Church Ladies bring cookies, and the Cattlewomen donate beef broth. But that’s not all. The Calvary Baptist Church and Nazarene Church donate their facilities for the drive. Baker Sanitary Service picks up the trash and about 20 local people donate their time to help with registration and serving the food. And thanks to the Baker City Herald and The Record-Courier our advertising is free.

As you can see, the blood drive truly is a community effort for a very good cause. My heartfelt thanks to all who helped.

And now we have another blood driving coming on Nov. 18 and 19 at the Calvary Baptist Church at Third and Broadway. I assure you that you will have a good time and some good snacks if you come. And you will feel good about donating.

Call me for an appointment at 541-523-4650.

Colleen Brooks

Blood Chairman

Baker City

 

A big bill, but worth it


The Baker City Council is being asked to spend a lot of money for something most of us will never see.

But the investment in a temporary ultraviolet (UV) light treatment plant for our drinking water is both wise and necessary.

What the Council can buy is reassurance.

By agreeing to spend an estimated $30,000 per month to disinfect drinking water with ultraviolet light, councilors can show residents that they are committed to avoiding a repeat of this summer’s cryptosporidium outbreak.

 
<< Start < Previous page 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 Next page > End >>

News
Local / Sports / Business / State / National / Obituaries / Submit News
Opinion
Editorials / Letters / Columns / Submit a letter
Features
Outdoors / Go Magazine / Milestones / Living Well
Baker Herald
About / Contact / Commercial Printing / Subscriptions / Terms of Use / Privacy Policy / Commenting Policy / Site Map
Also Online
Photo Reprints / Videos / Local Business Links / Community Links / Weather and Road Cams / RSS Feed

Follow Baker City Herald headlines on Follow Baker City Herald headlines on Twitter

© Copyright 2001 - 2014 Western Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. By Using this site you agree to our Terms of Use