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Articles written by Tom Mcdonald

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 By Tom McDonald    Voices    April 8, 2020 

Maybe it's time to look beyond luxuries

If you’re at home listening to the national hyperbole, you might think the nation is closed down. It isn’t. Just take a look at the list of “essential” services here in New Mexico, the ones allowed to remain open during these “stay at...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    April 1, 2020

Opinion: Remember, we're in this together

As we attempt to face this coronavirus crisis collectively, we're handicapped by a loss of trust in our institutions. Many if not most Americans no longer believe in our government, our leaders, the media, our churches, science and even our charitabl...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    March 25, 2020

Are we borrowing against future?

By the time President Trump declared a national emergency on March 13, nearly half the nation’s governors had already declared health emergencies of their own. The states, not the federal government, have been leading the battle against COVID-19....

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    March 18, 2020

Last week one for history books

Last week was one for the history books. On March 10, Joe Biden became the Democratic Party’s heir apparent with his big win in Michigan. The textbooks haven’t been written yet, but I think it’s safe to say it will go down in history as the...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    March 11, 2020

Law could damage public access

The governor gives and the governor takes away. For transparency advocates at least, that’s what it felt like last week when Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed into law two bills related to government transparency. Let’s start with Senate Bill 64...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    March 4, 2020

NM doesn't fit rural stereotype

This nation has been urbanizing since its beginnings, ever since the first industrial revolution started creating jobs in the cities. For centuries now, country folk have been moving to the city in search of something better than the subsistence...

 

Legal marijuana healthier choice

Seems like everybody else saw it coming, but not me. Since Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham had appointed a big-deal of a task force to consider all the angles, and since a super-majority of the state’s citizenry favors it, and since there’s so much...

 

New Mexico good place for space

Last week’s arrival of SpaceShipTwo at New Mexico’s Spaceport America signaled a big step forward in the “Space Valley” the governor is touting and the “Space Trail” we’ve had all along. With the spacecraft’s move from the Mojave...

 

Music sound of human experience

“There is geometry in the humming of the strings. There is music in the spacing of the spheres.” — Pythagoras Between the impeachment in D.C., and the debacle in Iowa and the gun-toting protesters in Santa Fe, politics is on overkill. I don’t...

 

Some good, easy-to-miss reporting

I’m mostly busy running my own newspaper these days, but I still have a weekly news service on the side. More than six years ago, I named it the Community News Exchange (CNEx) and have been running it ever since. These days, I mostly leave it in...

 

Watching political generation gap

In 1970, President Richard Nixon invited Johnny Cash to the White House. Nixon asked the country music star to sing “Welfare Cadillac,” a parody about a shiftless man who took his government checks to buy a luxurious car, and “Okie from...

 

Census more than simple headcount

Buried beneath the hyper-political year we’re about to have is something else that will shape our future. It’s time once again for a U.S. Census count. The U.S. Constitution requires a count every 10 years. More than a simple headcount, all...

 

A lot on plate for legislative session

Here we are again, about to enter into the abyss of a 30-day legislative session. It’ll be one of the fun ones, when lawmakers will get to spend-spend-spend. It must be refreshing for legislators who, not so long ago, had to cut-cut-cut their way...

 
 By Tom McDonald    News    January 8, 2020

Expecting big things in lawmaking

If you’re interested in seeing how this nation is changing, look to the states. If you look to Washington D.C., you’ll only find deterioration. With the start of the new year, a lot of changes came through new state laws — with New Mexico in th...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    January 1, 2020

A lot on its way in coming year

It’ll begin very soon, with state caucuses and primaries starting in Iowa and New Hampshire, and impeachment roaring out of the nation’s capital, all in January. The biggest monkey wrench to be thrown into the crossover between the 2019...

 

Eventful political year in New Mexico

Let’s take a look at some of the political and governmental happenings this year in New Mexico and where they might go in 2020. This year started out with one of the most significant legislative sessions in years, thanks to a 2018 tsunami that...

 

Christmas still means something bigger

There are 10 official federal holidays, according to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. They range from the controversial (Columbus Day) to the benign (Washington’s birthday, a.k.a. Presidents Day), while all but one are essentially of a secu...

 

Settlement closes dark chapter

A dark chapter in our previous governor’s time in office is finally coming to a close with a recent $10 million settlement. Six years after Gov. Susana Martinez’s administration accused 15 behavioral health providers of overbilling the state’s...

 

Got to know a good soul years back

In my formative years, I worked for the Appalachia Service Project, a home repair ministry affiliated with the United Methodist Church. We went into the poorest areas of Eastern Kentucky and Tennessee and used donated money, supplies and volunteers...

 

We can agree on being thankful

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, in my favorite month, every year. It’s my time to return to my roots, to Arkansas and her Ozark Mountains, where I was born and half-raised, and where the Clintons have been abandoned for Trump. Every year my di...

 

Never underestimate the extremes

A trio of op-ed pieces in Santa Fe’s New Mexican on Nov. 10 captured my attention. One was from the governor, another from an activist, and the third from a naysayer. Let’s start with Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s column. Headlined, “Our...

 

Impeachment won't quell divisions

You don’t have to go back 50 years to have lived through three of the four impeachment inquiries that have taken place in all of America’s history. Richard Milhous Nixon was facing three articles of impeachment when he resigned in 1974, then 25 y...

 

Need more nonpartisan problem-solvers

If you’re on the mailing list, you got that old familiar yellow manila folder in the mail last week, from Think New Mexico. I’ve lost track of how many of these reports I’ve received over the years, nor can I remember ever having felt it was a...

 

Law, not politics, should guide leaders

In all the noise over impeachment, has anyone pointed out the relationship between the law and majority rule? I think it’s central to the question about whether an impeachment is warranted so close to an election. It seems that some people equate...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    October 9, 2019

Going green good for capitalists

One of the things bothering conservative Americans these days is the “socialism” behind the Green New Deal being proposed by U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and others. But I think they’re ignoring a key point: Converting to clean and...

 

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