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Opinion

  • The time to file for those who want to run for office is just around the corner.

    A young man recently asked me the meaning of a politician. I replied that people who run for office most generally do it because they want to use their education, talents, personalities and experience in life to help others. They encourage self-sufficiency, but at the same time fight for and support programs that give people a little push in the right direction.

  • Perhaps Ms. (Councilwoman Diane) Moore is right in holding off awarding a contract to our current city manager. Perhaps we should try to hire a city resident to the city’s highest paid office. How many offices are we going to fill with out-of-towners, who pay taxes elsewhere and/or spend our hard-earned taxes (salaries) elsewhere? Recently, we’ve hired city attorneys, city managers, etc., from every town but our own.

    Can we try harder?

  • Recently five men in black robes took an action that may change the course of history. In ruling that corporations and unions have the same rights as persons to contribute unlimited amounts of money to political campaigns, the Supreme Court overthrew a century of practice and decades of legal rulings.

  • Oxford dictionary defines a “co-operative” as “a farm, business, or other organization that is owned and run jointly by its members, who share the profits or benefits.”

    The Mora-San Miguel Electric Cooperative is violating the spirit of a “co-operative” by ignoring their members’ rights to discuss and agree upon plans for a six-line, 86,400 volt overhead installation that has been designed and scheduled (mid-April 2010) to run from La Cueva through the Mora Valley, along Highway 518.

  • Thumbs DOWN for ... SOME PEOPLE STILL DON’T GET IT. There’s a large bank of handicapped-parking signs in front of the city’s recreation center and there’s often a car or two parked there illegally. That’s an indication that people often get away with it. And though the drivers predictably claim, “I was parked there just for a second,” the reality is usually much longer.

  • We’re all in favor of legislation that would create a state ethics commission, but the measures being advanced in this year’s session appear to be lacking a key ingredient — transparency.

  • Fair housing is an important value in our society — something that all levels of government must defend.

    Recently, local developer Phil Warfield filed a lawsuit against the city for its rejection of his proposed four-lot subdivision on New Mexico Avenue.

    The state courts will decide on the merits of that litigation, but Warfield’s lawsuit raised an interesting issue: Residents who opposed the development made statements that seemed to counter the idea of fair housing.

  • Reading the history of Mortimer Hall as written by Art Trujillo gave me a push to take the campus history a bit further.

  • Sometimes you have to marvel at the contradictions in government-speak.

    Patrick Lyons’ official title is “Commissioner of Public Lands.” But in defending his controversial proposal to swap Whites Peak lands, he argues in a PowerPoint presentation that state-owned lands in that area are not public lands. They’re trust lands.

    Say what?

    By Lyons’ account, the “public” part of his title is a big mistake. He is the public lands commissioner, but he’s not.

  • I am appalled by the actions of District Judge Eugenio Mathis in the case against Richard Baca in the killing of Benito Lemos. The reduction of charges and bail on the basis of a self-defense argument is absurd.

  • Unlike Thomas Wolfe’s protagonist, George Webber, in “You Can’t Go Home Again,” who returned home after writing a novel which upset his family and his hometown’s denizens by exposing the nature of the town’s failings, I’ve always been met with warmth and approbation when I return to Wagon Mound, my home for 11 years. Of course, I haven’t written a novel about the place.

    Nevertheless, no matter when I’ve returned to the village, I come away with good feelings.

  • Thumbs UP for ... HISTORY RECORDED THROUGH ART.  Casa de Cultura, a local nonprofit organization and significant contributor to quality of life in Las Vegas, was awarded $15,000 by the city to create a mural on “The People’s History of Northern New Mexico.” The money will go for paneling and materials (though the total price tag is estimated at $25,000). The mural will be on the north end of the old Safeway parking lot at Seventh Street and Douglas Avenue.

  • I have had it with all the reports blaming secondhand cigarette smoke for all the illnesses of mankind. Most of my patients who smoked died from old age and nothing else. People need to take a good long look at all the damage caused from radiation contamination. It is in the air we are breathing.

    You can see cigarette smoke, you can’t see radiation fallout. The government will not tell you the truth as to what we are breathing in our air. Look at all the illness caused from radiation contamination.

    Blame it all on a cigarette? I don’t think so.

  • Daniel Garcia, who lives near El Pueblo, contends that the county took his road without his family’s consent decades ago. And now he’s fighting to get it back.

    Last week, the San Miguel County Commission heard his request to abandon one mile of B41-E, which he said had been in his family for generations.

    In October, the commission had granted his request, but officials found out that they hadn’t given proper notice to all nearby residents. So the commission decided to reconsider the issue.

  • Remember the fun we had two years ago with the letters on the marquee at the off-again, off-again running of the Serf Theater?

    To review: Some time after the airing of “No Country for Old Men,” the management had a showing of “In Her Shoes,” starring Cameron Diaz. It was a flick my wife Bonnie and I practically slept through. The first rule of movie-watcherdom is to have a person we can admire, whom we can identify with, but in this movie, there were none. But I’m not a movie critic, so back to the marquee.

  • The Mora Council of the Knights of Columbus, Council 9889, would like to thank the following businesses for their contributions; they made our yearly celebration a success.

    The luncheon was held on Dec. 20 at the St. Gertrude Parish Hall in Mora. The whole community was invited to join us. Our council served 250-plus meals.

    Contributors were The Bank of Las Vegas, Community First Bank, Salman Ranch, Robert Serna, Ralph Anderson, Nelson Funeral Home, and Russell’s Super Market.

    Thank you all for your generosity.

    Joseph F. Pacheco

    Mora County

  • A landowner in El Valle, who stands to profit from the Invenergy Industrial facility on the mesa next to Starvation Peak, has approached the board of directors of West Las Vegas High School to gain support for the project. As you probably know from previous opinions on the subject, most people in our neighborhood reject the location for the wind turbines. More than 300 petition (signatures) have been gathered against it.  

  • In Mayor Tony Marquez’s recent  press release announcing that he would not run for re-election, he took credit for “liberating” our city government from “old time politics and the patron system.” Mayor Marquez also stated that he chose to “side with the people.” What “people” was Mayor Marquez referring to? I was not one of them.

  • The lack of stability has hurt City Hall over the last dozen years. As such, the Las Vegas City Council has rightly placed continuity as one of its chief goals.

    Too often, petty politics has caused turnover in the city manager’s position. New mayors have come in, with the proverbial swagger intent on installing their loyalists. And that means employees have had to undergo new processes, new rules, new management styles at regular intervals.

  • Thumbs UP for ... A VISIT FROM A HERO. It’s not every day that Las Vegas gets an up-close look at one of the major participants in American history. On Sunday, Minnijean Brown-Trickey spoke at the United World College about her experiences as a member of the Little Rock Nine, the black students who integrated Little Rock’s Central High School in 1957 under the protection of federal troops.