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Today's Opinions

  • A view from Lick Skillet by Gerald Largen: ALEC plan bad enough, travel rip-off worse

    Gentle reader, in our column for 15 July we wrote this:
    “The budget for Roane County for this fiscal year contains a line item designating the sum of $2,554,554.00, for “Industrial & Econ. Dev.”
    “Like us, do you wonder just exactly what we are going to get for this multi-million dollar expenditure of our tax money?”
    On the following Tuesday, County Executive Ron Woody granted an interview to News reporter Damon Lawrence to explain this budget item.

  • Contractor leaves mess, AT&T and state don’t care

    In this previous winter/spring, AT&T contracted with an outfit to bury some fiber-optic communications line down Hwy. 304 (River Road), seeding most of the raw land when they were finished. 
    They failed to seed most of the raw land they left from Luminary Methodist Church and south from there, including right-of-way and landowners’ property. 
    Apparently they ran out of seed, and just tossed straw on top.  Nothing grew for awhile, then weeds took over. 
    A great deal of that land is still raw looking.

  • Courage, kindness shown by many in wake of church fire

    This letter is written to express my heartfelt thanks and appreciation for those who help to make Kingston in Roane County such a great place to live.
    This is a wonderful community with caring people.  In recent months, I have witnessed a wonderful spirit of compassion and concern from our neighbors. 

  • Largen misleading on Cut, Cap & Balance column

    Correcting all of the misleading and blatantly false assertions in Gerald Largen’s columns would be a full-time job, so I usually just avoid reading them.
     Friday’s was so outrageous that I am compelled to respond to his attack on the Cut, Cap and Balance plan. 
    The original framers of the Constitution had studied history and the nature of man. 

  • Nuts & Bolts by Terri Likens: Letters to the editor — why some do not run

    We love hearing from our readers, especially when they express their opinions in a letter to the editor.
    But now and then we get letters that, for one reason or another, we cannot run.
    A recent example was one criticizing the tax assessor and her office.
    A major reason this letter did not run was it was written by another person who has openly expressed running for the tax assessor’s office.

  • Salute the Bill of Rights and save on legal bills

    By KEN PAULSON
    First Amendment Center
    Here we go again.
    In a familiar legal skirmish, a judge has once again told a local government that it has to remove a Ten Commandments monument from public grounds because it violates the establishment clause of the First Amendment.
    Senior District Judge Maurice Paul ordered Dixie County, Fla., officials to remove the monument from the grounds of the courthouse in Cross City.

  • LOOSELEAF LAUREATE: A trudge to the mountaintop — the long way up

    My 17-pound pack, filled with water, lunch and rain gear, felt downright light as I plodded 9 miles uphill to the top of Mount LeConte.

    After all, several years ago I was in failing health and my own weight was about double what it is now.

    I could not have imagined then, while recovering from thyroid cancer and its complications, that I would be able to tackle this peak — my own personal Mount Everest of the Smokies.

  • A view from Lick Skillet by Gerald Largen: Please define ‘Gross Domestic Product’ of U.S.

    As the regular reader of this column knows, we try to keep such readers abreast of important issues and developments in our government.
    One such development about which much has been said and written is the proposed “Balanced Budget Amendment;” but despite all the talk and writing, little specific has been told or written about just exactly what this Amendment would entail, if adopted.

    So that you, gentle reader, would know this, we print herewith the exact language of the Amendment, as proposed: