Local columns

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, Jan. 3, the third day of 2019. There are 362 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 3, 1977, Apple Computer was incorporated in Cupertino, California, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Mike Makkula ...

2020: Year of the Democrats? Maybe Not

WASHINGTON — If Democrats are optimistic as 2019 begins, it is understandable. Their victory on Nov. 6, adding 40 seats and taking control of the House of Representatives, was impressive. And with the party’s total vote far exceeding the GOP total, in places it became a rout. In the six ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, Jan. 2, the second day of 2019. There are 363 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 2, 1900, U.S. Secretary of State John Hay announced the “Open Door Policy” to facilitate trade with China. On ...

A Happy New Year

By Glenn Mollette WASHINGTON — A Happy New Year is on the agenda for most people. Arrive at 2020 alive. Another full year of life will give you the opportunity you desire to pursue happiness and fulfillment. You can’t achieve anything in this world if you are dead. Think about driving ...

How They Voted

This week’s issue presents the annual Missed Votes Report showing how many votes lawmakers missed during 2018. — — — MIDLAND — Michigan’s 38 senators and 110 representatives missed 1,671 roll call votes in 2018 according to the Missed Votes Report compiled by Jack McHugh, ...

Investments in the Upper Peninsula

LANSING — As the Michigan Legislature’s 2017-18 session came to a close, the Upper Peninsula received a lot of good news to brighten the holiday season. From sports and recreation to rural broadband, investments were approved that will benefit Yoopers for years to come. I was honored to ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Saturday, Dec. 29, the 363rd day of 2018. There are two days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Dec. 29, 1940, during World War II, Germany dropped incendiary bombs on London, setting off what came to be known as “The ...

What crisis tells us about 2020 voters

WASHINGTON — In these Washington hours of genuine bipartisan panic after the principled resignation of the nation’s thoroughly respected secretary of defense, James Mattis, American voters are forced to confront the real-life consequences of what it means to have elected an amateur-outsider ...

Osama Bin Laden was right

WASHINGTON — Osama bin Laden predicted it and his prophecy appears to be coming true. In his book, “The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11,” Lawrence Wright quotes bin Laden as saying: “Look at Vietnam, look at Lebanon. Whenever soldiers start coming home in body bags, ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Friday, Dec. 28, the 362nd day of 2018. There are three days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Dec. 28, 1981, Elizabeth Jordan Carr, the first American “test-tube” baby, was born in Norfolk, Virginia. On this ...

And peace online

NEW YORK — My New Year’s resolution: Make a careful distinction between speech and violence. America’s First Amendment says “yes” to most speech, including speech that criticizes, insults — even speech that promotes hate. But the law applies only to government. Private ...

Blame it on Zuckerberg

TRAVERSE CITY — A New York Times report said internal Facebook documents indicate that Mark Zuckerberg’s Frankenstein monster, despite promises to keep our info private, in fact shared and traded it — including our private messages — with other Silicon Valley giants like Amazon, ...

Trump’s legal woes continue to grow

WASHINGTON — It seems that every time we look at the legal maneuverings that reflect upon President Donald Trump, the allegations of unlawful behavior by him add up. We know that two teams of federal prosecutors are examining his pre-presidential and his in-office behavior. Special counsel ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, Dec. 27, the 361st day of 2018. There are four days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Dec. 27, 1979, Soviet forces seized control of Afghanistan. President Hafizullah Amin (hah-FEE’-zoo-lah ah-MEEN’), who ...

Will Trump hold firm on Syrian pullout?

WASHINGTON — “We have defeated ISIS in Syria, my only reason for being there,” wrote President Donald Trump, as he ordered the withdrawal of all U.S. forces from Syria, stunning the U.S. foreign policy establishment. Trump overruled his secretaries of state and defense, and jolted this ...

No peace or goodwill

WASHIINGTON — Not for a long time has the world seemed so removed from the angelic proclamation of 2,000 years ago: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men” (Luke 2:14). Millions have died in countless wars over the last 100 years. People continue to die ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, Dec. 26, the 360th day of 2018. There are five days left in the year. The seven-day African-American holiday Kwanzaa begins today. This is Boxing Day. Today’s Highlight in History: On Dec. 26, 2004, more than 230,000 people, ...

Why we need Christmas

By Glenn Mollette WASHINGTON — Merchants around the world depend on the Christmas season each year for 20 to 50 percent of their yearly sales. The travel industry from airlines to gasoline stations see a nice bump during the holidays. People are going to buy airplane tickets and buy ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Monday, Dec. 24, the 358th day of 2018. There are seven days left in the year. This is Christmas Eve. Today’s Highlight in History: On Dec. 24, 1943, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower supreme commander ...

Tough on criminal justice reform

WASHINGTON — Republicans and conservatives dating back at least to Richard Nixon have used the slogan “tough on crime” and its corollary “lock ‘em up and throw away the key” as electoral red meat. The problem is what to do when inmates are released with few skills, fewer job ...