Editorial: Christmas symbolizes gift of salvation

C hristmas is for children. Indeed, it is about the birth of a child some 2,000- plus years ago who Scripture tells us was the son of God and who came to Earth to teach us how to love one another. But this Christmas, we turn our thoughts to children in a sadder and different […]

Editorial: Ruling victory for advocates of open records

N ew Mexicans have friends in the state's judicial system who understand a fundamental truth about how best to serve the public trust. Those friends sit on the New Mexico Court of Appeals, which has upheld a lower-court ruling that lays out a broad — and welcome — definition of which documents the public is […]

Editorial: Education best way to curb teen birth rates

On paper, New Mexico has a serious teen pregnancy problem. The state has the second-highest teen birthrate in the nation, at 53 per 1,000 teens ages 15 to 19. (The national average is 34.2.) And on paper, reducing that birthrate involves clear steps: Male involvement, comprehensive sex education, confidential clinic services, service learning programs and […]

Editorial: Capital outlay system can be made better

As part of what is being billed a "New Century Economy Jobs Agenda" for the upcoming legislative session, Gov. Susana Martinez will attempt to reform New Mexico's inefficient capital outlay system. We wish her luck. Martinez is following in the well-worn path of previous governors who attempted without success to reform the way New Mexico […]

Editorial: Limiting liberty not an answer to shooting

Our nation is reeling from another unfathomable shooting tragedy and is searching for ways to prevent it from happening again. "It," of course, is the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre last Friday in Newtown, Conn. Twenty precious children, all ages 6 and 7, and six teachers were gunned down by a madman who then turned […]

Editorial: Prison system must employ efficiency

There's a reason the old TV theme song does not go "Don't do the crime if you can't do the time — plus two weeks." It's because in the American system of jurisprudence, when you have served your debt to society, you have served your debt to society. And government inefficiency should not serve as […]

Editorial: State campaign finance law must be fixed

I t gives new meaning to ineffectual governance. Last session, the New Mexico Legislature knew a major provision in the state's public financing campaign law had been declared unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court. And it did nothing. The Supreme Court said in 2011 that privately funded candidates might be reluctant to spend money on […]

Editorial: Empty pockets help fill stockings

This Christmas season of giving is exemplified by God's gift to mankind, his son Jesus. Like many readers, we too enjoy learning of many worthy opportunities around the region for you to emulate His generosity. One such opportunity we ask you to consider donating money to is the Empty Stocking Fund. The Salvation Army conducts […]

Editorial: Unemployment benefit reforms save money

The state has cut the rate of improper unemployment payments by more than half, saving $36 million. Reducing the percentage of payments considered improper from 24 percent to 11 percent between 2011 and 2012 was the biggest drop in the country. Not only is the effort saving taxpayers money, it also is saving employers money. […]

Editorial: Plant closure isn’t peanuts to Portales

Two months is a long time to watch millions of pounds of a crop sit in barns, to be out of a job in a tough economy, to have a business shuttered with no clue as to when it can re-open. But that's the position the federal government has put Portales farmers and workers in […]

Small schools make big statement

Like "The Little Engine That Could," a coalition of small school districts pulled together to make it into the last leg of the federal Race to the Top. The consortium of small, rural school districts from New Mexico, Washington and Arkansas put together an entry in the competition that has them in the final running […]

State needs to avoid another MVD computer failure

Did you hear the one about the Motor Vehicle Department computer? Taxpayers shelled out $5 million and are still in line two years later. It would be funny if it weren't true. The New Mexico Motor Vehicle Department pulled the plug on Milagro, the Gov. Bill Richardson computer miracle that never was, after it stalled […]

Editorial: PRC member lucky voters missing facts

Bernalillo County Assessor Karen Montoya, the newest member of the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission, is arguably one of the luckiest candidates to come out ahead in the Nov. 6 election. Because if voters knew then what they know now, it's questionable they would be entrusting her with setting their utility rates, overseeing their insurance […]

Ranking paints distorted picture of NMSU crime

We never give a second thought to the notion that the New Mexico State University campus may not be safe. And so, when The Business Insider website recently ran a story claiming NMSU was the second-most dangerous college campus in America, it simply didn't ring true with the students, faculty and community members who know […]

FCC media monopoly rules in place for good reason

The Federal Communications Commission appears intent on weakening media-ownership rules and compounding the mistake by ignoring its own troubling findings. The commission's first-ever review, released Nov. 14, found the ownership of broadcast radio and television stations by women and minorities to be at single-digit percentages. The FCC wants to aggravate this extraordinary lack of diversity […]

Like cockroaches, meth issue will never go away

In the same sense that we sometimes wonder why Mother Nature gave the world cockroaches, it's also normal to question why we have methamphetamine. Cockroaches certainly are among the filthiest, most prolific pests in the insect world. Meth occupies a parallel spot in the hierarchy of controlled substances. Just as there's hardly anything endearing about […]

Compliance with ID law security issue

C ompliance with the federal Real ID Act is not an immigration issue. It is a security issue. And as such, New Mexico's noncompliance via its driver's license policy is a public safety concern. Not just about the inability to track individuals who fraudulently obtain a license and then skip the jurisdiction, but about the […]

Editorial: Drug testing welfare clients inefficient

Starting off the early filings before the upcoming legislative session, Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst announced their support for a bill that would allow drug testing for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and unemployment benefit recipients. We have to ask: What are they smoking? The governor should certainly discourage illegal […]

Editorial: Voting rights do not need federal oversight

For residents of Southern states, one of the most-watched U.S. Supreme Court rulings will be in the next few months, when the justices consider whether it is time to relax the Voting Rights Act laws, originally passed in the 1960s to deal a death blow to racial discrimination in politics. There is little doubt the […]

Giving up on America is un-American

It's hard to take seriously the thousands of people who have signed a petition urging Texas to amicably divorce the rest of the union. Even in the fiercely independent Lone Star State, this idea is roadkill. While the signatories are exercising their right to free speech, this idea is just plumb screwy and an odd […]