August 28, 2014

Subscriber Login

Bring back shop class
Written by Josh Mandel   
Saturday, August 09, 2014 8:00 PM

By Josh Mandel

In high schools throughout America, shop class has been eliminated and kids are often told that the only way to be successful is to have a four-year college degree. I reject this approach and, to the contrary, believe we need to put shop class back in high schools and instill in young people a heightened sense of pride and purpose for entering careers in the skilled trades.

This important debate is illuminated by a Bureau of Labor Statistics study showing 48 percent of college graduates working in jobs that don’t require a four-year degree. As you read this today, there are young people throughout America who have four-year liberal arts degrees, thousands of dollars in debt, and are serving coffee at Starbucks or working part-time at the mall.

I believe that many of these young people would have been better off with a two-year skilled trade or technical education with actual skills to secure a well-paying job and many opportunities for upward mobility.

For example, I recently visited Pioneer Pipe in Marietta and learned that last year the company paid 60 of its welders over $150,000 and two of its welders over $200,000. The owner said he has had to turn down orders because he can’t find enough skilled welders.

Reaffirming our American values
Written by Byron McNutt   
Saturday, August 09, 2014 8:00 PM

Immigration and border security issues are demanding a lot of our attention as we debate the pros and cons of legal and illegal additions to America’s population.

It is easy to forget America is a nation of immigrants, and always will be. The vast majority of immigrants are good people. They come here voluntarily looking for a better life for themselves and their families. Who can blame them for that?

No one seems to have a problem with legal, documented immigrants. The problem is with the flood of uninvited, illegal immigrants. Who do you know that complains about the number of foreign children brought here via legal adoption?

There are human tragedies all over the world. Billions live in terror, without food, clean water and sanitation. The message cannot be: send us all of your unwanted people without any restrictions.

Many people are suspicious and resentful towards those who come illegally. We’d be more tolerant if it didn’t appear the illegals were coming mostly for free government money, free health care and other free benefits.

Many lower-middle-class citizens see the immigrants taking away their minimum wage jobs, leaving them to survive below the poverty level. Many of the illegals even qualify for government aid that isn’t available to current citizens. Illegal workers even send money home to their families.

Random acts of kindness
Written by Nancy Spencer   
Saturday, August 02, 2014 8:00 PM

They cross our paths every now and then. There’s just something different about them. They are the ones that stop and pick something up that you’ve dropped and open the door when your hands are full, or even not full. They take the time to stay in touch with others. They’re attuned to the fact that they don’t walk the earth alone. They know the rest of us are here and they acknowledge us by being courteous, friendly and just plain nice.

I encountered one of these creatures recently in Meijer. I had been maneuvering my cart down the aisles that I think we would all agree could use a good four more inches to comfortably pass someone else. I had just dodged behind a stand— nearly in the middle of the aisle, of course, and the corner of my cart tipped over three of the items on the stand.

Open letter to the community of Delphos
Written by Staff Reports   
Saturday, August 02, 2014 8:00 PM | Updated ( Sunday, August 03, 2014 7:23 PM )

Dear Editor,

Summer is a magical time for many of us, especially for students who have a brief respite from the responsibilities of school. Summer is when we are free to enjoy the outdoors, play some ball with our friends or hang out and relax at the pool. We, from Beyond Expectations, would like to thank the many people who help provide these same opportunities for the individuals in our community with physical, mental and medical challenges.

As we watch these events unfold each year and see these kids grow, it becomes evident that our commonality is more important than our differences.

Why gas taxes are a taboo topic
Written by Byron McNutt   
Saturday, August 02, 2014 8:00 PM

In a 2013 report, The American Society of Civil Engineers said more than 30% of America’s major roads are in poor condition and rated one in nine of the nation’s bridges as structurally deficient.

This negligence of maintenance and repair can cause an increase in travel times, damages to vehicles and it can cause accidents that result in injuries and fatalities.

After a harsh winter, it is clear Wisconsin’s state, county and city roads and bridges took a beating. Many people wonder, will it take a major tragedy, like a disastrous bridge collapse to get action from the State Legislature.

Non-partisan polls in Wisconsin show that residents and consumers simply don’t like gas taxes and because of that, Democrats and Republicans don’t want to talk about raising fuel taxes and don’t want to debate it as a campaign issue.

With many state races uncontested, why would candidates want to poke a bee’s nest? With consumers unhappy, legislators won’t deal with infrastructure upkeep issues until they are forced to.

Several articles on the subject have appeared in newspapers and I talked to former state legislator Jim Holperin of Eagle River for his insights and perspective.