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Peter Hannaford
by | Sep 9, 2015

Editor’s note: Peter Hannaford, a faithful contributor to this site for many years, filed this column on Friday morning. On Saturday, we learned yesterday, he died suddenly at his northern California home. His young colleague Robert Zapesochny, with whom he…

by | Sep 2, 2015

If you’d mentioned the name of the 25th president before this week, that’s the answer you would have gotten from about everyone except some Ohioans and the residents of a small California city (more about them later). President Obama changed…

by | Aug 24, 2015

Donald Trump is commanding center stage with his pronouncements on illegal immigration. He says he will build a wall along the Mexican border, from the Pacific to the Gulf of Mexico, and that he will get the government of Mexico…

by and | Jul 30, 2015

Since February, Niger’s army has been battling Boko Haram in its Diffa region. It borders Nigeria’s northeastern region where Boko Haram is trying to establish an Islamic state. This terrorist organization has killed more than 15,000 people and created 1.5…

by | Jul 27, 2015

Having created the problem of too many passengers lugging their suitcases aboard airplanes by charging for checked bags, the major airlines are now planning to make checked bags even more unpopular. The are testing various methods for making bag-checkers do…

by | Jul 6, 2015

Human tragedies and anxieties bombard us everyday in news stories online, in print and broadcast, and via Twitter and Facebook.  There isn’t much we can do about it, other than try to escape now and then. TV has situation comedies,…

by | Jun 30, 2015

Marijuana “grows” are the new environmental menace. Teams of sheriff’s deputies from three northern California counties found ample evidence of this in raids on several illegal grows last week. They were in a remote area called Island Mountain, where the…

by | Jun 23, 2015

In announcing his presidential candidacy, Donald Trump used his patented carnival barker’s routine. After that he took off for New Hampshire to actually campaign.  At his first stop he drew a good-sized crowed. After his pitch, reporters asked some of…

by | Jun 16, 2015

Many states, counties, and cities are in a budget vise caused by funds they are required to set aside to pay pensions for retired public employees. California may be in the worst shape. Ever since Jerry Brown—in his first incarnation…

by | May 28, 2015

In California in 2009, Abel Maldonado, a liberal Republican state senator, made a Faustian bargain with the Democrats who controlled the legislature. They needed one more vote to pass their budget. He would give it to them in exchange for…

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