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Columns

  • Coal exports unleash economic power

    When Mark Twain read his (obviously) premature obituary in the New York Times, he famously quipped: “the reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”

    Now more than 100 years later, some of Kentucky’s most radical environmentalists have read the tea leaves concerning the recent loss of thousands of coal-mining jobs in Kentucky and are gleefully gearing up for a celebration of the industry’s demise.

  • Farewell to a friend

    At his high school reunion, Tim Walker reconnected with several classmates who spent their adult lives out of state. Most had the same question.

    "Tim Walker is the mayor of Elizabethtown?”

    The surprise in their voices apparently amused him. Walker did something in life that many people never accomplish: He rose above the limits his hometown placed on him.

    He set different expectations for himself.

    Actually, Tim’s personal aspirations were derived from a sense of duty and faith.

  • Congress needs to learn how to make policy again

    I've noticed a recurring question as I talk to people about Congress. What can be done, they wonder, to get Congress back on track? Is our national legislature capable of serious policy making?

    At a time when polls say jobs and the economy are Americans’ chief concern, Congress has not passed a single piece of economic legislation. Instead, it’s focused on investigations. It’s an institution with very little to show for its efforts.

  • Dads can be supportive, even when they are apprehensive

    Children start out very fragile and helpless.

  • Paying off debt provides more options for Radcliff

    Over the past few weeks, several people have inquired about my decision to pay off the remaining debt owed on the Challenger Learning Center five years early.

    In 1998, the city of Radcliff committed itself to becoming one of several communities across the country which would be home to a Challenger Learning Center. The learning centers were designed to educate youth in our region on space exploration. City government would bond $3.8 million over 20 years to build the facility.

  • Listen to Dad's stories before he loses his hearing

    I still call my dad most every morning. While I’m driving to work, he’s slowly but surely making his way to breakfast in the retirement facility where my parents now live.

    I sometimes have difficulty communicating on the phone with Dad since his hearing is not what it used to be. (Dad just turned 89.) So, I was encouraged when Dad told me he was getting new hearing aids. I thought that would make our conversations easier.

    “I just got my new hearing aids,” he proudly announced one morning not long ago.

  • Spend some time this summer making memories

    In a jet black Plymouth Fury, built before air conditioning or seat belts were standard equipment, the vacation of a lifetime began.

    The massive vehicle would accommodate four adults, three children and a baby on a trip to California to meet Mickey Mouse. At 8, I was the oldest of that pack of kids.

    Disneyland was a novel concept in America. A new idea that became known as a theme park.

  • Activists oppose Beshear on health care

    Tea-party activists led by Jessamine County’s David Adams recently filed lawsuits in Franklin Circuit Court challenging Gov. Steve Beshear’s arrogant use of executive power to force Kentuckians to participate in Obamacare.

    Beshear claims he has the right to create a government-run health exchange and expand Kentucky’s Medicaid rolls – Obamacare’s state mandates – without agreement by lawmakers.

  • Beginning Tuesday, a weekly feature focusing on local teens

    Looking for a way to establish something new, an obviously successful model is a good place to start.

    That’s the reasoning behind the format and look of a new weekly feature that debuts Tuesday in The News-Enterprise.

    In search of a regular method to recognize the achievements of young people, the newspaper’s features team launches Tuesday’s Teen. It’s being established based on two effective examples.

  • Squawking about pension reform doesn’t make it so

    Recently, I was a panelist on KET’s “Kentucky Tonight” program about the commonwealth’s public-pension crisis.

    Much of the discussion reminded me of an annoying rhetorical tactic generally reserved for parrots, but often employed by cheerleaders for bigger, more -costly government: repeating the same nonsense over and over until viewers cave to the pure monotony.