×

Local columns

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, April 20, the 110th day of 2017. There are 255 days left in the year. Today’s Highlights in History: On April 20, 1977, the U.S. Supreme Court, in Wooley v. Maynard, ruled 6-3 that car owners could refuse to display state ...

Don’t buy this pig in a poke

ESCANABA — I want cheaper gas and cheaper car registration, but they are not on the horizon. The price of gas went up this year because the Legislature raised the gas tax 38 percent, from $.19 to $.263 per gallon. That is why gas prices went up in January. Michigan has the fifth highest gas ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, April 19, the 109th day of 2017. There are 256 days left in the year. Today’s Highlights in History: On April 19, 1967, Kathrine (cq) Switzer became the first woman to run the Boston Marathon (at that time, a men-only event) ...

The Bannon-Kushner power struggle

BERKELEY — The White House war between Stephen Bannon and Jared Kushner wouldn’t matter in a normal administration with a normal president. But there’s nothing normal about the Trump White House, whose major occupant exists in a giant narcissistic bubble impenetrable by anyone but close ...

Lobbying by Trump associates highlights foreign agent law

WASHINGTON (AP) — Paul Manafort says he’s registering with the Justice Department as a foreign agent. Michael Flynn already has. In both cases, the filings by these associates of President Donald Trump come late — after the lobbying has already taken place — and accompanied by an ...

A case for preventing children’s scraped knees

WASHINGTON — When not furrowing their collective brows about creches and displays of the Ten Commandments here and there, courts often are pondering tangential contacts between the government and religious schools. Courts have held that public money can constitutionally fund the ...

How They Voted

The House and Senate are out for a two-week spring break. Therefore, this report contains no votes but several recently introduced bills of general interest. Senate Bill 59 and House Bill 4409: Authorize student loan tax breaks Introduced by Sen. Curtis Hertel, Jr. (D) and Rep. Andy Schor ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Monday, April 17, the 107th day of 2017. There are 258 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On April 17, 1937, cartoon character Daffy Duck made his debut in the Warner Bros. animated short “Porky’s Duck Hunt,” ...

Warrior Trump

NEW YORK — Somehow, firing Tomahawk missiles at Syria suddenly changed people’s opinions of President Trump. Now they call him a “serious” leader. William Kristol said Trump’s action “reassures you.” Senators Lindsey Graham and John McCain, long critical of Trump, now say he ...

Easter – we need it really bad

WASHINGTON — Easter is almost here and we need it bad. People throughout the world celebrate Easter differently just like people celebrate Christmas differently. When I was a little boy I remember Easter egg hunts at my Grandma and Grandpa Hinkle’s place. They had lots of yard and egg ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Saturday, April 15, the 105th day of 2017. There are 260 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On April 15, 1947, Jackie Robinson, baseball’s first black major league player, made his official debut with the Brooklyn ...

Doesn’t look as if he’s from around here

WASHINGTON — When John McCain, after graduating from Annapolis and spending 22 years in the Navy, made his first run for Congress from Arizona, he was challenged by a Republican primary opponent for not having lived long in the state. McCain, who, as a POW for 5 1/2 years, had been tortured ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Good Friday, April 14, the 104th day of 2017. There are 261 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On April 14, 1865, President Abraham Lincoln was shot and mortally wounded by John Wilkes Booth during a performance of ...

AP fact check: Do President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago trips cost $3 million?

WASHINGTON (AP) — With President Donald Trump making his seventh presidential trip this weekend to his Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, government watchdogs and Democrats are once again seeing dollar signs: namely, $3 million. That’s a widely used estimate of what each journey costs ...

Want better roads? Open your wallet

FLINT — A new report says 20 percent of Michigan’s state-maintained roads are in poor condition. I think I speak for 110 percent of all Michigan drivers when I say “Ha ha ha.” Twenty percent is about 60 percentage points shy of the truth. I’m convinced the people who do these studies ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Thursday, April 13, the 103rd day of 2017. There are 262 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On April 13, 1742, “Messiah,” the oratorio by George Frideric Handel featuring the “Hallelujah” chorus, had its first ...

Nixon, LBJ and the Judges’ War

WASHINGTON — The Democrats’ drive to defeat Neil Gorsuch is the latest battle in a 50-year war for control of the Supreme Court — a war that began with a conspiracy against Richard Nixon by Chief Justice Earl Warren, Justice Abe Fortas and Lyndon Johnson. By June 1968, Nixon, having ...

The Middle East’s siren call

WASHINGTON — In Greek mythology, sirens were beautiful creatures that lured sailors to their doom with their hypnotic voices. In Homer’s epic, “The Odyssey,” ships came to ruin on jagged reefs, following siren song, the pull of the beautiful voices so strong that the hero Odysseus, in ...

Almanac

By The Associated Press Today in History Today is Wednesday, April 12, the 102nd day of 2017. There are 263 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On April 12, 1945, President Franklin D. Roosevelt died of a cerebral hemorrhage in Warm Springs, Georgia, at age 63; he was ...

Trump cranks up the fog machine

BERKELEY — Donald Trump’s technique for dealing with bad news is to create enough confusion and partisanship to envelope it in dense fog. Consider the most explosive news to come along in recent history — that the FBI has commenced an investigation of Trump aides to find out if they ...