Grandstanding takes attention from solutions

Political grandstanding in Washington, D.C., continues to halt real progress on the issues that challenge the country — including the need to fix the nation’s broken immigration system. Both New Mexico Democrats, Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, cast important votes last week against legislation that would have punished New Mexico cities and counties for […]

Sloan: You can blame weather for that

My book-of-the-month summary for October is “The Handy Weather Answer Book” by Kevin Hile. As a kid, nothing seemed more boring than weather. Now, nothing is more fascinating. Without weather, we would not exist. Catastrophic weather can bring long-term benefits, lead to mass fatalities, political conflicts, and even determine the outcome of battles and romantic […]

Cantwell: We need a celebrity; just not Trump

I know the rest of New Mexico is pumped as I am about the excitement and intellectual stimulation of the political season. Through the magical medium of television, we join the rest of our countrymen in face to face engagement with America’s finest, one of whom will become president of these United States. How fun […]

Finance reform under Dianna Duran laughable

re·form – verb 1. make changes in (something, typically a social, political, or economic institution or practice) in order to improve it. What does embattled Secretary of State Dianna Duran not understand about the problem with putting her name and the word “reform” in the same sentence? It should be apparent to even the most […]

McManigal: Immigrants go where welcome

Does it not seem completely bizarre to you that people who seek to live somewhere without first getting permission from a gang of bullies — permission that is getting more difficult to obtain — would be an issue around which people would base their choice for new supreme slavemaster? I mean president. “Conservatives” yapping about […]

Render: Assisted suicide a slippery slope

New Mexico State Rep. Bill McCamley, D-Dona Ana County, writing for, states his belief that, “no government should stop a terminally ill, mentally competent adult from making their own end-of-life choices.” He also notes that California Gov. Jerry Brown recently signed the End of Life Option Act, which authorizes doctors to assist terminally ill […]

New training program hope for our youth

If and when opportunity knocks, young people need to be prepared to seize it, and a new state program should help put them in that position. It’s not news that New Mexico struggles with poverty, low-paying jobs and poor educational outcomes. Our poverty rate is 20.4 percent compared to the national rate of 15.4 percent. […]

McDonald: Presidential outsiders have edge

By the time New Mexico’s preferential primaries roll around on June 7, some 40 other states will have already voted for their party’s candidate. That means there’s a good chance the nation’s Democrats and Republicans will have already decided who their nominees will be, even if it isn’t official until they hold their national conventions […]

Care is wonderful survival strategy

By Steve Hansen Local columnist Maybe I’m old fashioned, or just old, or just selfish, but the whole idea of the “sharing economy” is lost on me. I don’t get Uber, Airbnb, and GoFundMe. To me, the gains do not match the risks. If you pick up a rider on Uber, what’s going to stop […]

Acceptance would be start for GOP

“In a country where a sitting congressman (said) evolution and the Big Bang are ‘lies straight from the pit of hell,’ where the chairman of a Senate environmental panel brought a snowball into the chamber as evidence that climate change is a hoax, where almost one in three citizens can’t name the vice president, it […]

Ban on burning flag infringes on free speech

Without bothering to consult or conduct polls on the matter, let’s all just go out on a limb and agree that flag desecraters are a minority, probably a minuscule one — most likely a smaller minority percentage-wise than the lone Democrat on the nine-member Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. That highest of Texas criminal law […]

McManigal: I’ve changed a lot from teen years

Recently a friend from my late teenage years commented on a Facebook post. He expressed his opinion that I have changed a lot since then. It wasn’t clear whether he meant this to be complimentary or not. My first reaction was to get defensive. Fortunately, before responding I realized how wonderful it was I have […]

Render: Citizens responsible for shooting rate

According to crime statistics published by the Chicago Tribune, someone gets shot in Chicago every 2.84 hours. From Jan. 1 of this year through October, that comes to 2,349 shootings. This number includes 370 homicides. If the shootings continue at their present rate, the total victim count for 2015 will be more than 2,800. Chicago […]

‘Forgotten’ vets get honor they earned, deserve

They were 16 Army soldiers; seven Navy sailors, including one female veteran; three Air Force airmen; and two Marines. Most served during the Vietnam War years. Several are from the Korean War era. They are: Army — Robert Axtell, Kenneth Carnes, Harold Chalupa, Arturo Gavilanes, Norman Grady, Adrian Greene, Glenn Loney Jr., Stanly Minge, Brock […]

McDonald: Think NM proposal sorely needed

It should be no surprise to any of my regular readers that I’m a big fan of Think New Mexico. It’s important to our state to have a nonpartisan think tank researching quality-of-life issues and pushing for changes, especially in the Legislature, that benefit all New Mexicans instead of a self-interested few. Plus, it has […]

It pays to listen to dad sometimes

New Mexico native Paul Modrich says his father, the local high school biology teacher in Raton, suggested when he was a junior in high school that he “should learn about this DNA stuff.” Modrich took his dad’s advice. On Wednesday he received a surprise email from a colleague congratulating him for being part of a […]

Sloan: Professor: Obama legacy looks promising

In a book titled “Interview with Professor Donald Elder: The Presidents of the United States,” Clovis resident Michael Shaughnessy recently interviewed the Portales resident about the 44 U.S. presidents. As we dripped sweat from noon-time basketball, Elder told me he put his personal opinions aside in answering Shaughnessy’s questions. I find it interesting most of […]

Wilson: Showing friend new movie worth trip

“What’s this? ‘The Iron Giant’ is playing? With two new scenes? Everybody I know is going to want to go see this. We should get at least a dozen people … how will they all fit in the car?” Yes, these are some of the thoughts I had when I saw one of my favorite […]

Prison staffing, officer pay must become priorities

When is the last time you put in a 72-hour workweek on any kind of job, much less a dangerous one? Probably never, if you are an average 40-hour-a-week worker. Unfortunately, due to difficulty in recruiting and retaining prison officers, New Mexico’s state-run prisons are seriously understaffed, and some officers are working those crushing workweeks. […]

McManigal: Out with the old, in with the new

When thinking of my favorite seasons, autumn is definitely in the top four. Just where it ranks depends on when you ask me. Some of the more heavily forested places in which I have lived offer more in the way of fall colors, but no matter where I am, I always feel a sense of […]