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Today's Opinions

  • Leave partisan politics out of public education

    The selection of Secretary of Education is a critical responsibility, yet the seriousness of this position is downgraded to “who the hell cares” by every voting Republican (except two) who voted for Betsy DeVos.

    I thank those two honest and empathetic Republicans, while I truly ridicule all the others who voted her in.

    One of my B.S. degrees is in education. I have taught eighth through 12th grades as well as college and graduate students. I loved teaching in the public-school system.

  • FROM the ALLIANCE: Haslam plan earns thumbs up

    By Wade Creswell

    Gov. Bill Haslam officially rolled out the IMPROVE Act a couple of weeks ago, a proposal focused on improving critical infrastructure throughout the state. He spoke more about it in his State of the State address.

  • Aquatic weed session proved a futile exercise

    I would like to voice the opinion of over 30 people who left the Environmental Review Board/County Commission meeting early as we were being told about fishing communities being established in Rhea County to capitalize on the grass destroying our lake.

    The ERB really fumbled the ball Monday night. Getting that many people together again will not happen. The lack of ideas, presentation or an action plan by the ERB was embarrassing.

    When asked, “How do we move forward, and who is taking charge?” they sat there showing that they had no clue or plan.

  • GLIMPSES: Dear Howard Baker Republicans ...

    By Mark Banker

    Last week I wrote to Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker and Gov. Bill Haslam to express deep concern about our new president and our nation’s well-being.

    Regular readers of this column will not be surprised by my message. Forty-plus years of attempting to make sense of our national experience convince me that our most precious political inheritance is a distinctively American tradition of principled pragmatism.

  • Temperance Bldg. could house city offices, coffee bar

    Harriman City Council has asked for input as to what to do with the Temperance Building. I have responded to that request, and I’m sending this to you in the hope it may lead others to respond, too.

    My response is to by all means repair and use this beautiful building on a daily basis.

    Use it to house some city functions. There are two room on the first floor which have, in earlier times, been used as offices. One by the zoning office, one by the fire chief.

  • Could hike in gas tax also call for even pricing?

    In regard to the potential gas tax increase, would it be possible to go up .1 cent on top of whatever increase emerges?

    I remember when gas was 19.9 cents a gallon when I first started driving, and we would go out of our way to save a penny a gallon.

    Now that the range on gas prices is $1.999 to $2.999, the nine-tenths is not a relevant factor — it has always been a marketing gimmick.

    Along with the .1 additional increase, require that all stations price their gas in even dollars and cents.

    Charles Whaley Sr.

    Rockwood

  • From the EDITOR’S Desk: Services abound for Roane seniors

    When I wrote about my Leadership Roane County class visit to the Roane County Animal Shelter last month, I pointed out that you can tell a lot about a society by how it treats animals.

    You can tell even more about a society by how it cares for its sick, young and elderly citizens.

  • A VIEW from LICK SKILLET: Can he learn to run the trains on time? Not so far!

    Gentle reader, as you will recall, last week we were filled with hope that the President and the old curmudgeon were going to hit it off just fine, based upon his statements in his inaugural address concerning the state of education in the nation.

    Unfortunately, although we remain steadfast, he has veered off course already in the very first week on the job. How disappointing. But, we must soldier on, as we have in the past made a practice to do, through numerous administrations, regardless of partisan affiliation, and call ’em as we see ’em.

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