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 By Pam Burke    Opinion    August 18, 2017 

View from the North 40: When the going gets tough, get wordy

This has been a tough week, so to get through it I thought long and hard about what the people I know and respect do to cope with adversity: They play to their strengths — meditation, prayer, binge eating. So I turned to the only thing I have...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    August 18, 2017 

Looking out my Backdoor: Felled by A blackberry bramble

I certainly never expected to spend an afternoon in the emergency room of the local hospital on my holiday with my son and granddaughter. Just an innocent scratch, I tried to tell myself. Lexi and I,...

 

It's time to remove the Confederate Memorial from our capital city

As members of the American Indian Caucus of the Montana Legislature, we extend our condolences to the family of Heather Heyer, who lost her life protesting hate and bigotry in Charlottesville, Virginia. Our hearts also go out to the families of Lt....

 

The governor prioritizes bureaucracy over Montanans in need

The continued growth of Montana’s government is out of control. If anything, we should be looking for responsible ways to trim bureaucracy and slow new hiring. Since 2008 we have seen huge technological advances, which should have led to more...

 

Stop pointing fingers and face the facts about our state budget

As governor of Montana it’s my job to responsibly manage the state through everything from a difficult fire season and the challenges posed by increasing drought conditions to making sure we take advantage of the opportunities presented by our...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    August 11, 2017

Not so much an epic battle, but it's a war

One of the struggles for those who train combat troops is to condition soldiers to run forward, attacking, when ambushed rather than retreat. Experts say fleeing causes chaos which feeds into the effe...

 

GOP focuses on responsible budgeting in lean times

In lean financial times, families across Montana know that the responsible thing to do is to prioritize spending and, in some cases, cut back on the wants so that the needs of their families can be met. Understandably, Montanans want to see state...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    August 4, 2017

If good luck is all you have, take it

“Well, that was a lucky water break.” Trust me, if you have to say you had a water break, it’s best to have a lucky one. Way back in the early days of Pam and John, we had a water break under the trailer house we were living in. It flooded the...

 

The eager, reluctant traveler

My suitcase perches, mouth open, on my sofa, poised to swallow piles of clothing and jumbles of travel essentials: toiletries, Kindle, laptop, gifts. Mine is not a planned trip. The “plan” was for...

 

People need to know the reality of the Lodgepole fire

I think this is a good time to share the obvious reality concerning the Lodgepole fire complex. First of all, lightning started the fire in Sandage Coulee, not in Lodgepole Creek. Sandage Coulee is located in the center of a Wilderness Study Area....

 

Montana's clean energy future should not be financed on the backs of ratepayers

Imagine that you were forced to sign a 25 year contract for gas for your car at three to four times the market price. That’s the exact situation NorthWestern Energy customers were facing without the Montana Public Service Commission’s recent...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    July 28, 2017

View from the North 40: It's all right there in the numbers

Data analysts say, if you torture the numbers long enough, they’ll tell you anything. I just read that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has compiled the statistics and crunched the numbers, and the official data says more people in...

 

Door Number Three

Yesterday morning, I thought about options available when solving problems related to eldercare. The more I thought about my reasons for becoming a mediator, the more I thought that the ideas converge. As I see it, there are three doors to resolving...

 

Supporting producers during tough seasons

Generations of Montanans have cultivated the land and passed family farms and ranches down to their children. Their work has built Montana’s economy and preserved a way of life that still defines our state today. But with the ground cracking...

 

Daines' filibuster proposal bad for Senate, America and Montana

Congress is in crisis, and some members of the U.S. Senate suggest fundamental changes that would forever alter the future of that esteemed body. In one dramatic proposal, Montana’s own Sen. Steve Daines has proposed getting rid of the historic...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    July 27, 2017

Ants in my pants and other observations

Ants, those little buggers, are a constant, year-round plague. Mosquitoes don’t irritate me nearly as much. I don’t disdain the power of the mosquito, dastardly carrier of dread diseases, to...

 

Who supports a plan for growth?

I have a response for Greg Jergeson’s Havre Daily News editorial of Tuesday, July 18. Mr. Jergeson’s account of the Highway 2 Association’s mission, “Enhancing Economic Development in the Highway 2 Corridor by Constructing an Adequate...

 

We can protect private property rights and public land access

Two core values that Montanans share make our state great: a deep respect for private property rights as well as a dedication to public land. Defending both of these values is essential to our way of life. Montana is blessed with 28 million acres of...

 

In memoriam: Liu Xiaobo

On July 13, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo, a political prisoner in China and a champion of democracy, died of liver cancer in a Chinese hospital. The world mourned, but in China his death was barely noted. The Chinese government is...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    July 21, 2017

View from the North 40: From the bottomless hole of on-hold

Today I would like to take a departure from my usual frivolous subject matter to touch on the serious topic of people’s worth, specifically, the value of my own life. How much is my life worth? Is it worth, for example, $750? When I was a small...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    July 20, 2017

Looking out my Backdoor: Morning has broken

“Like the first morning.” Scrub oaks, verdant from recent rains, reached out branches and clutched passing clouds onto high mountaintops, puffy sombreros heavy with moisture. Mountains held onto...

 

Cost prevents four-lane in Lohman highway project

In February, Governor Steve Bullock appointed me to the Montana Transportation Commission, representing Commission District 3. The three corners of the district are Blaine County in the northeast, Glacier County in the northwest, and Lewis & Clark...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    July 14, 2017

Just how dry is it in Pamville?

Any ideas I might have had for this week’s column were immediately erased in the moment I realized my home was not going to burst into flames, burn to the ground and start a wildland fire that obliterated the Hi-Line. I’m sure you can imagine...

 
 By Sondra Ashton    Opinion    July 13, 2017

Looking out my Backdoor: Riding along in my automobile

Have you ever had a day when you feel unutterably sad for no earthly reason except that you are human? On my patio, on this day when my thermometer registers a mid-afternoon temperature in the low...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    July 7, 2017

View from the North 40: Recent encounters in man vs. nature

With wildfires, earthquakes, drought, grizzly bears invading the prairie and our descent into the heart of bug season, Pamville News brings its readership news and commentary on what’s happening in the man vs. nature struggle across the country....

 

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