Obama transfer of power faces new troubles

Freedom New Mexico

If you’ve ever wondered why some TV networks choose to air romance marathons on Super Bowl Sunday, it’s something the entertainment industry calls counter-programming.

The idea involves offering the public a clear alternative — and let’s face it, there can be no fewer than 180 degrees between the Vince Lombardi trophy and the Forbidden Passionate Love of Love’s Forbidden Passions.

Likewise, maybe the people in our area could use a break from the litany of downers that seems to have hijacked current events these days:

• The local Salvation Army reports donations to its three holiday programs were up for the second year in a row.

As reported in Tuesday’s paper, the Salvation Army received almost $55,000 in donations this season — a 44 percent increase from 2006.

That says a lot about the region’s collective hearts in this economy.

• Clovis native Hank Baskett’s Philadelphia Eagles have surprised the experts and find themselves two wins from the Super Bowl.

After a November swoon left them longshots for a playoff berth, the Green won four of their last five regular-season games and vaulted past Dallas into a wild card slot. Last Sunday, they beat Minnesota, 26-14, and this Sunday they play the Giants in a divisional playoff beginning at 11 a.m.

Baskett has been a key component in the Eagles’ success, with 33 pass receptions and three touchdowns. He’s averaging 13.3 yards per catch.

And finally:

• According to international business expert Geoffrey H. Moore, the average recession since 1948 has lasted 11 months. The Great Depression, by comparison, lasted 43 months. So if you count backward to the rupture of the housing bubble, America’s economic straits might look a bit less dire.

We know, we know … you can’t change a dreary state of mind as easily as you change channels.

All the same, it couldn’t hurt to mentally surf through your alternatives every now and then.