Both parties should heed Trump’s warning

Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015 — I’m not at all a fan of Donald Trump, currently the frontrunner in the Republican presidential primary race. I’m a working-class guy, and I can’t imagine a billionaire businessman like Trump representing my values, interests or needs. Nah, he can’t and he won’t. I understand that. Hey, let’s just elect this super-rich guy and poof — he’ll make America great again. I’ll stick my head under water and see how long I can hold my breath, OK?
    Now some conservative friends of mine say folks like me can’t support Trump because we’re jealous of those in our country who have made a lot of money, and we expect the rich to hand over their hard-earned dollars to all us do-nothing poor folks. They play that class warfare card, and I must respond.
    Bear poker that I am, whenever such a controversy erupts, I always quickly invoke — just for the sake of argument, context and historical perspective — John Winthrop’s 1630 sermon “A Model of Christian Charity,” (which also contains the shining “city on the hill” reference you hear so many politicians and pundits cite since Ronald Reagan used it) and its assertion — based on the Puritans’ belief in predestination — that God made the rich so they can learn to be charitable and generous, and He made the poor so they can learn to be patient while waiting for the rich to honor their obligation to them.

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City’s water conservation efforts show positive results

Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2015 — Congratulations to city of Susanville residents for their efforts to conserve water as mandated by the state as California struggles with the fourth year of drought.
    Dan Newton, the city’s public works director, said the latest figures released by the state reveal residents’ conservation efforts saved 34 percent through July 26 this year compared to the same period in July 2013.
    According to the city’s plan to comply with a 36-percent reduction in water use mandated by the state, the city hopes to reduce outdoor water usage during the summer months enough to reach the state’s goal. We’re not there yet.

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Citizen watchdogs report their findings to the community

Tuesday, July 28, 2015 — The 2014-2015 Lassen County Grand Jury Final Report has been released to the public and is included as a special insert in this edition of the Lassen County Times.
    Lassen County citizens who served on the grand jury include Joseph Franco (foreperson), Ronald Jarrell (pro tem), Robert Beckett, Mervin Delgado, Marlene Gauthier, Henry Hart, Teresa Mossinger, Rosemari Reed, Denise White, Kim Brooks, Ronald Harrison, Emily Jones, Jennifer McNally, Ben Ramsey, Juston Struthers, Jane Voss and two members who resigned.

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My day starts with more than a cup of coffee

Tuesday, July 28, 2015 — I am a morning person. But I am a better morning person with coffee. I have two mugs on my desk — one that is stuffed with pencil and pens and emblazoned with the words “What deadline?” and the other — the one that I actually drink from that reads “I need coffee now!”
    For Christmas this year, rather than buying individual gifts for my newsroom coworkers, I bought a coffeepot and a month’s worth of French Roast. But this really isn’t a column about coffee — it’s about getting off to the right start in the morning.

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Donald, please, we should honor our heroes

Tuesday, July 28, 2015 — Anybody who knows me knows I am not a mindless rubberstamp for the government — especially when it comes to the military. I’ve always thought war — that bloody arena where men and women line up against each other in life or death conflicts on the land, in the air and on the sea — rightly must be included among our world’s greatest and most horrific obscenities. I don’t believe there is much chance I will ever change my mind about that, and I’d be willing to bet most of those who have actually seen combat would agree with me.

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Thursday, August 27, 2015