Non-VA care growth worrisome

By Tom Philpott Military Update Like a waiter bringing the check after a high-spirited meal in a fine restaurant, the Congressional Budget Office has dampened some good vibes among lawmakers who rushed to solve the access-to-care crisis for veterans. CBO estimates the cost of requiring the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide non-VA medical care […]

Letter to the editor — Maturity helps heal high school wounds

You’d think I’d have been apprehensive about coming back to Portales to see people I hadn’t seen in almost two decades. You’d think I’d have been apprehensive about reliving some of my high school experiences when some of those experiences weren’t the best. Heck, I didn’t even have that many experiences compared to others. But […]

Iraq war architects should consider sitting one out

Seldom have truer words been written: “Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many.” Trouble is, the words were written by former Vice President Dick Cheney and his daughter, Liz, about current President Barack Obama and his foreign policy. That the man who helped lead this […]

Sloan: Educated will seek out evidence

When this column was due, I was vacationing in Arkansas — caves, cousins, cabins, canoes — so I perused Facebook for inspiration. A few anti-education, anti-intellectual, reverse-snobbery sentiments caught my attention. One pejorative term was “overly educated.” Since I have a master’s degree, perhaps I am lumped in that category. My degrees at a blue-collar […]

Cantwell: Barney doesn’t get us; hard to blame him

There’s something about the sound of the ring. Maybe it is just acute intuition on my part, but I often just know I am going to pick up the receiver to hear Barney’s bark. Yep. It was him. My New Jersey friend was all in a dither over New Mexico politics. “Did your governor not […]

Solitary should only be used when necessary

Solitary confinement is “a tool that needs to be managed appropriately,” said New Mexico Corrections Secretary Gregg Marcantel. After spending 48 hours in solitary at the State pen, New Mexico’s top prison guard now has some personal experience to motivate him to carry out his vow to reduce the hundreds of inmates in segregation, which […]

Imposing law violates others’ rights

By Kent McManigal Local columnist Not a day goes by I don’t witness a complaint by someone saying their freedoms are being trampled on and legislated away. Almost everyone can point to something they enjoy that has been regulated into illegality — or severely restricted — by government edict. Yet, if you question most of […]

Grouse threatened listing no solution

By Jim Constantopoulos Guest columnist Fish and Wildlife Service seems confounded by the negative response to listing the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species. In designating the lesser prairie chicken as threatened, a step down from endangered but warranting specific protections, it had provided assurances that no additional federal regulations that might have an […]

Americans need more inspiration at ballot box

L ines of voters once again stood patiently, waiting to vote in the Afghanistan runoff election over the weekend. At risk to life and limb, the citizens of that war-torn country demonstrated that they understand the importance of voting. Such regard for the ballot is something Americans have lost. A primary election during a non-presidential […]

More non-VA care could backfire

By Tom Philpott Military Update A report by the Department of Veterans Affairs’ inspector general and a separate “access audit” of appointment scheduling practices across VA healthcare facilities confirm system-wide abuses to distort wait times for care. It shows patients have been put at risk and shaken confidence in how VA hospitals and clinics are […]