[SeMissourian.com] Fair ~ 70°F  
River stage: 21.09 ft. Rising
Tuesday, Mar. 31, 2015

Columns

'Stonewalled' worth a read
I just finished reading the book "Stonewalled" by Sharyl Attkisson, a former CBS award- winning investigative reporter. I highly recommend it, especially for anyone interested in the media and government coverage. Attkisson's journalism career has spanned more than 30 years. During that time, she uncovered wrongdoing by those in power, including major corporations, government officials and presidential administrations of both parties...
What? You don't know who should be the next president?
Have you made the Big Decision yet? You know, the one where you take a ballot and pick whom you want to be the next president. OK, maybe you would like to see who the candidates are first. Fine. Be that way. The first official candidate has officially filed to become an official money-raising organization for next year's official presidential election. ...
Book '1775' destroys myths about Paul Revere
I have never covered two books in a row in this column, but I recently finished "1775" by Francis Russell, published by New Word City 2014, copyright American Heritage. I had to tell about this book of historical events, written for a general audience and not as reference material for historians. It is a well-written, easy read about events, including the first battles of the American Revolutionary War...
Caffeinated agenda
The ill-fated Starbucks Coffee campaign to force a discussion on race relations in this country ran into massive customer pushback. And as a result, no longer will customers receive handwritten inclusive messages on its overpriced cups of java. Starbucks is quick to defend its poorly conceived campaign by asserting that the first phase of their ongoing "racial discussion" has ended but not because of consumer resistance...
Why we pay taxes, why we vote, why we take pride
Voters in Cape Girardeau and Cape Girardeau County will be making important decisions this year. They will be voting on plans to spend millions of dollars. Here are some thoughts about why I think these ballot issues are so important -- and why I think being informed and voting are duties we should take seriously...
A little-known U.S. traitor
I recently finished reading "An Artist in Treason: The Extraordinary Double Life of General James Wilkinson" by Andro Linklater, published by Walker and Co. in 2010. Most Americans know Benedict Arnold as the most famous traitor in U.S. history. While Arnold holds that dubious distinction, a lesser-known traitor was General James Wilkinson, who worked as a spy, known as Agent 13, for Spain from Aug. ...
Questions of trust
Did the president's top adviser really leak information about former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's hidden private emails to the press in an attempt to "get back" at the Clintons for past deeds against her boss? Did the president send "his" people to Israel recently -- on the taxpayers' dime -- to undermine this week's national elections there?...
The slow miracle: a modernizing Mexico
For many U.S. citizens, Mexico is that most unusual of places: a nation that seems familiar, but remains truly unknown. Superficial knowledge of certain elements of Mexican culture -- food, holidays, bits of language -- are in many cases more accurate representations of the heritage of Mexican-Americans, or areas frequented by U.S. ...
The slow miracle: a modernizing Mexico
For many U.S. citizens, Mexico is that most unusual of places: a nation that seems familiar, but remains truly unknown. Superficial knowledge of certain elements of Mexican culture -- food, holidays, bits of language -- are in many cases more accurate representations of the heritage of Mexican-Americans, or areas frequented by U.S. ...
Still time to hope, and Missouri can lead the way
There is a God. Just when you think the Almighty has abandoned the political pits in Jefferson City and other places where politicians congregate, here comes a heavenly ray of light to show us the way. Yes, I am talking about the bolt of sanity that has touched the minds of some of our legislators in the state Capitol who are backing a bill that would eliminate -- I say eradicate! -- the twice-a-year folly of resetting our clocks...
Close air support
When enemy fighters are engaged by U.S. ground forces, they often resort to a time tested strategy to deny the U.S. forces full use of their arsenal. At least since Vietnam, enemy forces have known that close combat means the U.S. troops are in danger from some of their own weapons, and that danger will make the U.S. force reluctant to employ those weapons...
1: Get the cat's attention. 2: Keep trying. 3: Again.
Training cats and putting toothpaste back in the tube have much in common. To wit, they are nearly impossible. Maybe you have tried this at home. Let's say you have a cat. Let's say you want to train your cat to do something. Cats like treats, so you think you will use treats as an incentive for your cat to do something special...
Whose boots on the ground?
Who's boots on the ground? Successful warfare is a team effort with the team consisting of air and naval forces in support of ground operations. In World War II heavy destruction by bombing did not end the fighting. In Europe it took multiple invasions and heavy fighting across Europe to defeat Germany. ...
University makes right choice in next president
On Wednesday Dr. Carlos Vargas-Aburto was announced by the Board of Regents to succeed Dr. Ken Dobbins as president of Southeast Missouri State University. Vargas is acting president of Kutztown University, a regional university (like Southeast) of around 9,500 students located in rural Pennsylvania. He has a distinguished record in higher education, both as an educator and as an administrator...
GOP should lead on immigration
Like many of you, I am sorely disappointed with the leadership in Washington, D.C., that has plunged this great nation into a fiscal and international mess of historic proportions. But the lack of leadership that disappoints me the most is the miserable failure and continued incompetence of the Republican leadership -- and I use that term loosely...
The anti-civilization: The Islamic State and history
Years from now, when historians write about the defeat of the Islamic State, and its welcome disappearance from the world, they will have much to say. After describing their surprise rise in Iraq and Syria, they will narrate the horrors perpetuated by this group: massacres of civilians, conscription of child soldiers, brutal enslavement of women and girls, and destruction of entire religious communities...