Commentary

U.S. sense of security threatened by Republican Party

BY: - August 24, 2022

If you find yourself agreeing with people who threaten to kill or harm political opponents, urge you to “arm up” for a coming “civil war” or fail to criticize those who goad others into fanatical frenzies then step away from your television, chat group or bar stool and take a very deep breath. Our sanctimonious […]

Free, simple tax filing puts interest of Americans above corporate profits 

BY: - August 23, 2022

Paying taxes is our civic duty. The government’s duty is to make it as easy and inexpensive as possible for us to pay our taxes. But for too long, Congress has failed to uphold this responsibility, favoring instead corporations that profit from our need to file tax returns. A bill recently introduced in Congress would […]

Wolf management in Oregon is a train wreck

BY: - August 18, 2022

I recently received another email update from Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Wolf and Livestock Updates list. I opened the message and clicked the link anticipating bad news.  Another wolf had been killed by the department in Northeast Oregon. A two-year old male trapped, tranquilized and then euthanized by the state. His crime? Being […]

Polls that consider a broader picture are more reliable in predicting ballot outcomes

BY: - August 16, 2022

On July 20, a tweet that prompted an Oregonian debate looked like an election horse race shocker: a projected Republican win in the state’s 4th Congressional District.  Said one tweeter, “These Oregon ratings are uh interesting.” The tweet was a map showing Oregon’s 4th Congressional District (in southwest Oregon, including Lane and Benton counties) as […]

Logging interests now dominate forest collaboratives

BY: - August 9, 2022

Mark Webb, director of the Blue Mountains Forest Partners collaborative, recently attacked a colleague who dared to shed light on what’s actually happening across public lands in eastern Oregon.  Forest collaborative groups, such as the BMFP, were initially created to bring together diverse interests, such as loggers and environmentalists, to restore forests. Unfortunately, collaboratives no […]

Is Timber Unity becoming disunified?

BY: - August 4, 2022

The rural activist group Timber Unity recently passed its third birthday. How many more it may have has become a notable question – and whether, even now, it is becoming Timber Disunity. The group started as a coalition of farmers, wood industry workers and truck drivers, backed financially by several businesses in that field, aiming […]

Jan. 6 committee reveals Trump’s Orwellian attempt to win the election

BY: - July 26, 2022

Anyone who’s read George Orwell’s “1984,” the dystopian novel about life under an authoritarian regime, knows that to survive, one had to accept whatever Big Brother said no matter how big the lie. Proof you’d come to fully embrace the all-controlling Party was to believe without question that two plus two never equaled four but […]

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 […]