Reader Commentary

Commentary: Congress needs to protect swipe fee reform

Each day, over 1,000 Virginians walk into one of my three 7-Eleven stores. My stores are at the heart of our communities whether our customers stop in for their morning coffee, an emergency trip for diapers, or for a sandwich at lunch. When I came to the United States in 1987, the first ...

Commentary: How cops prey on private property

Public funding of law enforcement agencies and the courts is meant to promote a fair and publicly accountable justice system. Yet more than 50 law enforcement agencies in Virginia are undermining public trust as they rake in big bucks from the seizure and forfeiture of private ...

Commentary: Trump fiddles while the planet burns

In February of last year, Fox News published an opinion piece titled "It's time to get rid of the EPA," in which author Bill Wilson asserted that "false data" and "fuzzy science" were used to justify the Clean Air Act and to block construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. In the intervening ...

Commentary: World worries about fate of science

On Earth Day, thousands felt compelled to take to the streets in support of science. There is widespread concern that our current government is led by lawmakers ignorant of the concepts of reason and objective truth that science brings to the world. They are ruled instead by an overwhelming ...

Commentary: Choices made with no vision keep us stuck in the past

Shenandoah County is at a crossroads. Will our county move forward, or will this year’s funding by the Board of Supervisors continue a retreat of support of vital county services including schools, Sheriff’s Office, public safety, and libraries? Today, the Board of Supervisors will meet ...

Commentary: Don’t buy what GOP is selling

You can save a lot of money by shopping around for your new phone or television.  Retailers clearly compete for your dollars. Can competition in the free market work the same way to bring down health care costs?  Republicans in Congress are banking on it as they promote health savings ...

Commentary: Beliefs and contradictions

The mental jujitsu required to be a Trump supporter must be exhausting, even for the most died-in-the-wool, hardcore Hillary-hating, rebel-flag waving partisan. Does the mental function required to separate fact from fiction automatically go offline when Trump speaks? Reason disengages? What ...

Lawrence Kudlow: Middle-income wage earners need a win

After the breakdown of health care reform, both President Trump and the Republican Congress need a W -- a win. And not just any win but one that will play into the public demand for faster economic growth, better jobs and higher wages. Recent polls show the nexus of growth, jobs and tax cuts ...

Commentary: They’ve had a chance!

"As an octogenarian and a political junkie, I’ve lived through many a presidential election. But I’ve never seen anything like the 2016 contest. It had an unprecedented crowd of Republican candidates. The ultimate Democratic field included an old Socialist who had never been, in a real ...

Commentary: A case against seven on board and the need for compromise

I want to begin by stating that I am writing this as a citizen and member of the Shenandoah County Board of Supervisors and that this is my personal opinion. I am not writing it on behalf of the board. Lately, there has been much discussion about the dysfunction of our board and our 3-to-3 ...

Commentary: Give public chance to discuss tax rate

On Tuesday the Shenandoah County Board of Supervisors should set its "advertised" property tax rate at a level high enough to make public debate about it worth having. This rate – the maximum possible rate the board can finally accept – will become the topic of a public hearing (now ...

Commentary: Beware of PACs seeking gifts

There has been a lot of talk lately regarding the adding of a seventh member to the Board of Supervisors, mostly coming from members of Parental Alliance for Strong Schools, a group founded to increase school spending. No one can argue or debate that there has been dysfunction on the Board of ...

Commentary: Trumpcare: Health insurance for young, wealthy

There is a huge gap between the promise of Trumpcare and the reality.  President Trump promised better, lower-cost insurance available to everyone.  In reality, Trumpcare will cost many people much more and provide less.  It isn't an exaggeration to say that millions of people in the ...

Commentary: This is not your father’s Republican Party

So much has been written about Donald Trump that at this point I feel a lot of people are starting to become numb to it all. His scandals, questionable business dealings, accusations of sexual assault, as well as what could possibly be deemed treasonous activities at some point in the very-near ...

Commentary: Quality schools are not extras

I find the story some folks tell about our community frustrating and worrisome.  That story goes something like this: "Extras, like quality schools and public safety, would be nice to have, but Shenandoah County is too old and poor to be able to provide those big-city services."  I do not ...

Commentary: Unfit, unqualified, and unwelcome

It is increasingly clear that Donald Trump possesses self-promotion and fortune building skills, but lacks qualities required in a president, or even in a city council member. His abilities made him a reality TV star, but do not translate to governance. Persuasion, empathy, or even the ability ...

Commentary: The difference between an immigrant and refugee

Wendy spoke English and worked in the health clinic in the parish of Maria, Madre de los Pobres in the impoverished barrio of La Chacra in San Salvador, El Salvador.  Since 1991, I have been visiting the parish as a home away from home. In the past, the health clinic was full on Monday ...

Commentary: Legislators need to fix our broken immigration system

In today's political climate, merely mentioning the word "immigration" evokes unease and polarization at every level from our families and neighbors, all the way up to our legislators. The problem, up until now, is that we've been having this conversation from emotional and political ...

Commentary: Big government ineptitude in a small town

I purchased an historic Strasburg home at the end of 2008, and moved in shortly afterward. I moved here from Northern Virginia because I wanted to restore an historic home, and to get away from the silliness of big government stupidity and elitist arrogance. Imagine my shock now that my new ...