Food shopping in a supermarket

The rising tide of inflation threatens to swamp Oregon’s public budgets

BY: - July 19, 2022

Gas prices and grocery bills have headlined the immediate effects of rising inflation on household budgets. But inflation has downstream effects that will swamp public budgets as well, eroding the capacity of state and local revenues to sustain support for vital services. In Oregon and neighboring states, consumer prices rose 8.8% year over year in […]

Hotline could help in understanding motivation behind hate crimes, but needs improvement

BY: - July 18, 2022

Where do hate crimes come from? From mass shootings to those of smaller scope, more understanding of the dynamics behind them can be a critical element to coping with them. A new tool launched by the Oregon Legislature three years ago may help provide some of that insight – if it is put to its […]

U.S. Supreme Court out of touch with most Americans

BY: - July 13, 2022

I woke up the morning of July 4th feeling cynical about “Independence Day” after the recent slew of  Supreme Court decisions that essentially eviscerated long-standing constitutional rights and protections considered core to our democracy. With Dobbs v. Jackson, the Supreme Court’s newly anointed conservative supermajority stripped women of the constitutional guarantee to decide whether to […]

Oregon gubernatorial race takes a turn with U.S. Supreme Court decisions 

BY: - July 7, 2022

The independent gubernatorial candidacy of Betsy Johnson is predicated on bringing together two dissatisfied groups – Republicans unhappy with the Trumpy side of their party, Democrats unhappy with the Portland-style liberalism in theirs – with independents to form a polyglot plurality.  She took a useful step in that direction with her call for a series […]

Will Oregonians support a more aggressive approach to reduce gun violence? 

BY: - July 4, 2022

Oregon’s latest citizen-led effort to keep guns out of dangerous hands has become a go-to campaign in the wake of the rapid-fire slaughters of innocents in Buffalo, New York, and Uvalde, Texas. Hundreds of Oregonians have reportedly taken to the streets with clipboards in hand to qualify Initiative Petition 17, titled the Reduction of Gun […]

Need for trusted journalism is more important than ever to help Oregon progress

BY: - July 1, 2022

The fate of news in Oregon should matter mightily to you. Getting the facts about government, the economy, social justice and more is what it takes to make good decisions. And those decisions affect your life – where you chose to live, the quality of teachers educating your kids, the condition of the streets you […]

U.S. Supreme Court’s decision by six Catholics breaches wall between church and state

BY: - June 30, 2022

Shortly after the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to gut Roe, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt declared, “The womb is now … the safest place for a child to be.”  My question is, where is the safest place for women and the babies they will now be forced to bear? The court’s decision to overturn Roe made […]

State needs information about water use to manage it

BY: - June 24, 2022

Like other western states, Oregon has a water department – the Department of Water Resources – and extensive water law and regulation, and there’s a reason for this. Water is an essential resource, our lives depend on it, and ensuring we have water available means regulating it intelligently.  To do that, we need information, and […]

Forest collaboratives in Oregon that bring together various interests are working

BY: - June 20, 2022

In a recent opinion piece, Rob Klavins of Oregon Wild cites five different restoration projects as evidence that collaborative efforts across eastern Oregon are eroding environmental protections, decimating forests, and silencing environmental dissent as “extractive interests” take over collaborative groups. Klavins is not telling the truth about forests or collaborative groups. Klavins claims the Wallowa-Whitman […]

Oregon Public Health Division

Reforming Portland city government is now an all-or-nothing gamble

BY: - June 17, 2022

“I am large, I contain multitudes.” – Walt Whitman, Song of Myself Portland’s Charter Commission finalized its expansive reform effort this week with an epic-length ballot measure that contains multitudes. How it plays with Portlanders is now the question. In a single measure, Portland voters in November will be asked to diminish the role of […]

‘Blue dog’ days may be over in Oregon’s 5th Congressional District

BY: - June 16, 2022

The Blue Dog Democrats in Congress for years have attached themselves to a piece of hard political logic: If you run toward the center, instead of toward the left, you’ll pick up more votes in districts considered competitive between Republicans and Democrats. That idea, accepted and rejected with equal fervor in various parts of American […]

Confusing decision about what is ‘public accommodation’ could shift issue into public spotlight

BY: - June 10, 2022

Here is a pivotal sentence from a just-released Oregon Supreme Court decision concerning a case of alleged prisoner mistreatment: “Buildings do not discriminate; people do.” That simple statement then twists in unexpected directions, reflecting partly that it comes from a dissent in the decision, and which in turn came not from an Oregon court case […]