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Articles written by Tom Mcdonald

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 By Tom McDonald    Voices    March 20, 2019

No point in legislating morality

Today’s topic is sin. I’ll try not to get preachy about it. There’s a long list of habit-forming vices that Americans have enjoyed, condemned, regulated and even outlawed over time, but today we’ll consider four in particular — tobacco,...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    March 13, 2019

Good laugh may be medicine for anger

Trump. Climate change. Liberals. Conservatives. Socialists. Capitalists. Bet you don’t think any of these charged-up words are funny, but maybe you should. Recently I heard a segment on NPR’s Morning Edition connecting anger and humor, part of a...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    March 6, 2019

I think Dad would still love all

News item: The United Methodist Church voted on Feb. 26 to reinforce its ban on openly gay clergy and same-sex marriages, leaving in place a longstanding policy that states, “The practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian...

 

Hemp legalized, but not for gardens

Move over marijuana. Your straight cousin is about to become the latest cash cow for agriculture in America. In case you missed it, the biggest news to come out of the 2018 Farm Bill is the federal legalization of hemp, a cannabis species that...

 

On verge of constitutional emergency

Sound the alarm! We’ve got a national emergency on our hands! Well, it’s really more of a constitutional emergency, as President Trump has opened the door for all future emergency declarations to be defined by politics, not real threats to our he...

 

Governor stands in defiance of president

Let’s start with this reality-based premise: The “national security crisis” we face is mostly internal. The violence and crime in our schools and on our streets doesn’t have anything to do with foreign-born “illegals” and terrorists. They...

 

Wage hike should be tied to inflation

This will be the year in which New Mexico’s minimum wage will go up, probably dramatically. The Democrats will make sure of that. Moreover, this year’s legislative session is an opportunity to put this perennial issue to rest for good — by...

 

NFL one more big business entity

I’m done with the NFL. At least for this season. If I were a man of higher principles, I’d be done with it for good. The New Orleans loss to the Rams was the straw that broke my back. To essentially end a great season with such a blatant penalty...

 

Time to keep an eye on the Dems

The last time New Mexico was in this situation, Bill Richardson had just been elected governor. It was 2003 and Richardson, a former congressman and high-ranking official in the Clinton administration, had just won election with about 56 percent of...

 

Still believe we can change course

I’m always hoping things will turn out better than they appear to be headed. Take our future as a species as an example. Climate change and the polluting of our air, soil and water suggests that catastrophe is bearing down on us, and it doesn’t...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    January 9, 2019

Good or bad, change is coming

Suit up, New Mexicans. Big changes are about to take place. That’s what a commanding majority of New Mexicans voted for — but that doesn’t mean we’re all going to like it. Take gun control as an example. In a rural western state such as...

 
 By Tom McDonald    Voices    January 2, 2019

Reasons for optimism in coming year

The new year is a time for hope. We want to believe in a better year ahead, so we celebrate the possibilities. Here in New Mexico, there are a number of reasons to be optimistic about 2019, especially if you’re a Democrat, the party that now...

 

Opinion: Heroes stand tall in 'war on truth'

SANTA ROSA — Could it be that Time magazine is abandoning the “great man” perspective on history, one in which larger-than-life individuals shape world events, for a “people’s history” narrative in which common people have the greater...

 

Opinion: Memories much better than gifts

In terms of pure economics, our biggest national holiday is, of course, Christmas. I read somewhere that Halloween comes in as a strong second, but I’d be surprised if it’s anywhere close to the money we Americans spend for the yuletide. Perhaps...

 

Opinion: Dog park worth consideration

Geraldine Barber came by the Santa Rosa newspaper office recently to register a grievance — too many people are letting their dogs “do their business,” as they say, in other people’s yards. She was particularly disturbed by a big pile of dog...

 

Opinion: Technology changing work, world

“Now the captain, he said to John Henry, ‘I’m gonna bring that steam drill around. I’m gonna bring that steam drill out on these tracks, I’m gonna knock that steel on down, God, God. I’m gonna knock that steel on down.’ “John Henry...

 

Opinion: Still looking for reasons to believe

SANTA ROSA — I’m an optimist by nature, but lately I’ve been having a hard time. Like most Americans, I’m none too pleased with our political leadership. We have an amoral and narcissistic president who says he doesn’t even believe in one...

 

Opinion: Wishing you blessings of family, too

Picture this: An Arkansas preacher and teacher have six sons who grow up, get married and have children of their own. Then those children grow up and have their own kids. Even the cousins have cousins, and our extended families grow and grow … and...

 

Opinion: Dems now control NM politics

SANTA ROSA — There may have been mixed results nationally, with the Democrats winning the House and the Republicans increasing their majority in the Senate, but here in New Mexico, an indisputably blue tidal wave overtook the midterm elections. I k...

 

Opinion: Boomers did rock and roll right

SANTA ROSA — If there’s anything the baby boomers did well, it’s music. We rocked. Of course, rock and roll wasn’t born entirely out of our generation. It was the byproduct of all sorts of musical genres, including and especially rhythm and...

 

Opinion: Older but not necessarily wiser

SANTA ROSA — Getting old sucks. At least that’s what I’ve heard. OK, I’ll admit it. I’m getting there myself. I’m 62 years old — but I’ve always been about 10 years younger, in maturity, than my actual age. In my teens, I rebelled aga...

 

Opinion: Do your homework before voting

Here we are, on the verge of one of the most important mid-term elections in American history, and Russian meddling is being charged. Guess it never really stopped. Last week, Elena Alekseevna Khusyaynova was charged with trying to influence the 2018...

 

Opinion: Self-interest isn't best way to choose

SANTA ROSA — The other day I overheard an argument between friends over two particular candidates for the same office. One is the incumbent, so the question was posed, “What’s he done for us?” I’ll leave out the particulars — which...

 

Political 'culture war' never stronger

The way I figure it, the Republicans are getting the Supreme Court judge they want but they’re going to pay for it by losing big in the mid-term elections. If Democrats don’t at least take the U.S. House this time around, I’ll be both stunned a...

 

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