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 Opinion    January 18, 2017 

Health Care: Finding Hidden Meaning in Political Words

After the most disruptive and disreputable presidential campaign and transition in memory, I seriously relate to the words of “My Fair Lady” lyricist Alan J. Lerner from the song “Show Me,” which begins: “Words! Words! Words! I’m so sick...

 
 Opinion    January 17, 2017

Rep. Zinke should embrace stewardship within Interior

By Mark Fix Secretaries of the interior are called to be public stewards. On behalf of all Americans, they oversee our great national heritage of forests, grasslands, fisheries, national parks, wildlife, waterways and mineral wealth.  Congressman...

 
 By Paul Dragu    Opinion    January 16, 2017

What's so great about winter

I’ve lived most of my life in a warm place, a place so warm, a place that can get so sweltering hot, that its nickname includes the word “hot.” Hotlanta. In Hotlanta, a snow dusting, however slight, sends everyone home from the office. A few...

 
 By Jacob Bachmeier    Opinion    January 16, 2017

Committees getting into full swing in Helena

Early in the session, not a lot of major business takes place on the floor of the House of Representatives. The committees are getting into full swing hearing the bills that have been introduced, and that workload will increase as legislators...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    January 13, 2017

It's a clean life, if you don't weaken

My mother-in-law used to say, “It’s a great life, if you don’t weaken.” I think it’s an old Irish saying. It definitely sounds like something the Irish would come up with — a truism...

 
 Opinion    January 11, 2017

Positive Reforms Coming to Indigent Defense in Montana

Montana’s Constitution requires state government to provide public legal defense to individuals who cannot afford their own legal counsel when they are charged with crimes involving imprisonment, facing involuntary commitment because of a mental...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    January 6, 2017

Someone has to be it

I call it negative inspiration. You know how you meet someone or read a story about someone amazing who has triumphed in life despite incredible tragedy. Yeah, this isn’t it. Negative inspiration is...

 
 Opinion    January 5, 2017

Just in case you think my life is exotic

Routine. My life is routine. I don’t live on the beach, lounging beneath a palapa, tanning my skin into leather, holding a fruit-filled drink, serenaded by mariachi bands. Ha. So, I just returned from two weeks in Mazatlan where I stayed with...

 
 Opinion    January 4, 2017

Substance abuse is everyone's problem

Substance misuse and abuse is not only a national problem; it is a local problem. Substance misuse is the use of alcohol or drugs in a manner, situation, or frequency that could cause harm to the user or to those around them. Substance misuse is a...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    December 30, 2016

The beautiful poetry of SPAM

It's probably too obvious to be worth mentioning, since I do write for part of my living, but I love words. The thing is that it's not just the words themselves — like how "unite" and "untie" have...

 
 By Pam Burke    Opinion    December 23, 2016

Making the holiday spirit bright

In this busy time of year — while I wait for the the first wave of crowds to run out of money and the second wave to get their gifts exchanged post-Christmas — so I can do my holiday shopping,...

 
 Opinion    December 16, 2016

Trump resistance pins last hope on Electoral College

The Electoral College meets this Monday in what will be the final step in Donald Trump’s improbable rise to the presidency. But it will also be the last chance for #NeverTrump dead-enders to keep Trump out of the White House. And now, the anti-Trum...

 
 Opinion    December 16, 2016

Ironically, some votes count more

The Universe loves irony. As proof of my wisdom in this, I give you exhibit No. 1053, the 2016 Election of the President of these United States. As pretty much everybody on Earth and in the planet’s geosynchronous, elliptical and circular orbits...

 
 Opinion    December 16, 2016

Donald Trump's Amerika

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell ... Yes, that Mitch McConnell ... is backing a bipartisan investigation into allegations that the Russian government tampered with American elections and maybe, just maybe, helped Donald Trump win the...

 
 Opinion    December 15, 2016

Time to revisit the Electoral College

Back in 1969, by a whopping vote of 339 – 70, Democrats and Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives united to pass legislation to do away with the electoral college. A companion bill, co-sponsored by Montana Sen. Mike Mansfield and...

 
 Opinion    December 15, 2016

It's the only dance there is, so dance, dance, dance

Seventh grade. 1957. I don’t know why I went to our first junior high dance. I couldn’t dance, not even a two-step. Didn’t know how. We were all “expected” to go and most of us showed up. For me, the experience felt like I imagined showing...

 
 Opinion    December 15, 2016

Embrace those tidings of comfort and joy

Believe me, I understand if you’re ambivalent or even disdainful of the religious aspects of Christmas. I understand why you couldn’t care less which festive cups Starbucks uses, why you’d just as soon your grandchild be a dancing snowflake as...

 
 Opinion    December 15, 2016

Putting the Zoroaster back into Christmas

’Tis the season to be jolly! From now until New Year’s Day, the merriment typically continues unabated. Between the gift-giving and spiked eggnog, some folks set aside a few moments so the reason for the season can be considered. Chances are...

 
 Opinion    December 14, 2016

Unsubstantiated anti-Trump 'hate crime' allegation taints university

I grew up with Saturday Night Live. When it debuted in 1975, I was a high school freshman and looked a little bit like Gilda Radner’s Emily Litella, with her eyeglasses and unkempt hair. For that reason alone, she endeared herself to me. The other...

 
 Opinion    December 14, 2016

Give Trump credit where credit is due

The nation’s newspapers are struggling mightily to find columnists who are willing to write nice things about Donald Trump. That’s according to a report in the Washington Post, indicating that the regular stable of conservative pundits — from...

 
 Opinion    December 14, 2016

Trump could be undone by untruths

As president, Donald Trump could be undone by untruths. He ran a successful campaign laced with lies, but he cannot run the country that way. Finding workable solutions to policy problems requires a common understanding of what the problems actually...

 
 Opinion    December 14, 2016

Latest First Amemdment threat: War on 'fake news' part of a war on free speech

A major threat to liberty is the assault on the right to discuss political issues, seek out alternative information sources, and promote dissenting ideas and causes such as non-interventionism in foreign and domestic affairs. If this ongoing assault...

 
 Opinion    December 13, 2016

Senate Democrats plan to 'Ashcroft' their good friend Jeff Sessions

There’s been talk among some conservatives and Republicans that Democrats are plotting to “Bork” the nomination of Sen. Jeff Sessions to be attorney general. That’s not right. What Democrats really hope to do is to “Ashcroft” the man...

 
 Opinion    December 13, 2016

Our county parks, including Beaver Creek Park, need you

The Hill County Park Board is establishing a Finance and Planning Committee. This committee will be a permanent committee of the board that will develop recommendations, advise the Park Board and support the park manager concerning financial and...

 
 Opinion    December 13, 2016

Outposts of transformation

HEART’S CONTENT, Newfoundland and Labrador — Of all the landmarks of high tech, including the Menlo Park lab where Thomas Edison perfected a marketable incandescent light bulb, the Palo Alto garage where Hewlett-Packard’s audio oscillator was...

 

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