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Dean Kirkland

Ridenbaugh Press/publishing

http://www.ridenbaugh.com/

Located in Carlton

Last update: July 15th, 2019 at 05:34 am

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from our writers

One of the professional pleasures I’ve enjoyed in broadcasting and writing opinion journalism has been the freedom to occasionally chew on the nut cases of the far right. That enjoyment has been especially heightened when one or more ”targets” gets all outraged and feels personally persecuted. That was especially true

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Sometimes, what appears to be a minor change in political direction turns out to be a historic turning point. Did most Americans in 1933 realize that the slew of legislation that flew through Congress in the first 100 days of Franklin Roosevelt’s presidency would shape the American political environment for decades? The N

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Bill Roden’s obituary told a story about him I can’t recall ever having heard, certainly not from him, and it may explain a lot about who he was and why he had the effect on people he did. During World War II, internment camps were set up around the American west to hold large numbers of Japanese-Americans. Roden’s pa

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It’s summer, so it’s time for wilderness hikes, river floats, stream fishing and reading Medicaid waiver applications. Many don’t believe it, but the Federal government is our partner in Medicaid. It is a Federal law, but states have a say. Heck, if Idaho wanted to we could withdraw from the whole program. We could th

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Why can’t you tell me why you feel entitled to take someone else’s money, their property, their accumulated assets?1 Why does another working American taxpayer have to pay for your existence? ► meme in The Federalist Papers As a concept, entitlements cut in two directions, one of them much less acknowledged than the o

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The President’s trip to the G-20 meeting in Japan produced some foreign policy blunders that will prove harmful to America’s national security. The problem is that he just wings it without bothering to develop an understanding of complex international issues. Trump started off by suggesting that the U.S. defense treaty

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Well, summer is officially here in our cactus-littered neighborhood. It’s easy to tell. Temperatures this week have been 102, 108, 109, 110 and 111. The 115’s and 120’s are yet to come. Overnight lows recently have been around 80 but we expect 90’s in a few weeks. Sometimes, I don’t think humans were m

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For years the debate on family values has focused more on ideology than on what actually keeps families together. ► Hara Estroff Marano, in Psychology Today “Family values” has become an aging term, fallen into disrepair and in some quarters, disrepute, but it continues to pop up in both ironic and non-ironic contexts

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Idaho Republican elected officials, with a couple of notable exceptions, seem unable to control, let alone influence their party. In political terms, the inmates have taken over, once and apparently forever, the GOP asylum. The GOP state central committee elected a new party chairman last week and the rank and file chose as

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Last week a national political reporter asked me what how I thought Idaho’s new governor, Brad Little, was doing. Was he he thriving? Was he managing okay? Was his struggling? It seemed like a good time to pause and consider the new governor, for a couple of reasons. First, it’s a six-month mark, and time enough has pas

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Twelve score and three years ago our fore fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all are created equal. I ask you to reflect today on the past work done, the work at hand and the work before us, that we may continue to reap the blessings of liberty. F

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It is best to define the welfare state not through its noble goals but through its instruments. ► Cato Institute, 2018 “Welfare” is enshrined as a core purpose of the U.S. constitution: to “promote the general Welfare.” Its top dictionary definition (per Merriam Webster) very much reflects that: “the state of do

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On July 4, 1776, the Second Continental Congress adopted a remarkable Declaration, proclaiming the thirteen American colonies to be free from British control. The delegates famously stated: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalien

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For several years, I’ve predicted the eventuality of a single-payer health care system in this country and submitted myself to verbal stoning from those who disagreed. And there were some who did, in fact, hurl some verbal rocks. Problem is, aside from criticism – warranted or not- the “throwers” offered no alte

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Conservatives should have sympathy for millennial borrowers, who did everything their parents and culture told them to do to be successful, only to become the most debt-laden generation in history. Countering a culture of credentialism mania with apprenticeships and trade alternatives is a positive step, but the first rule

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Historians, philosophers and ethicists have been debating for nearly 60 years – perhaps longer really – the notion that a person can do evil without being evil. That question is at the heart of philosopher Hannah Arendt’s description of Adolph Eichmann, the Nazi bureaucrat who implemented Hitler’s slaughter of six m

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State lines can make quite a difference, which is one reason a gaggle of Oregon Republican legislators are – as this was written – hiding out in Idaho. They might re-cross the state line soon, but the reasons they’re in Idaho and why the timing matters reflect several differences between the states – pro

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Back before we got into a stalemate when talking about healthcare costs, long ago when I had good knees and my hair wasn’t grey, funding for small town hospitals was recognized as a problem. After Montana demonstrated they could support critically needed remote hospitals with a federal project, Congress rolled the “Crit

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Our first president said that virtue of morality was a necessary spring of popular government. He said who that is a sincere friend to it can look with indifference on attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric [of society]. ► Senate candidate Roy Moore in a September 2017 debate with Republican primary opponent Sen.

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World Refugee Day, June 20, is a time to consider the desperate plight of the more than 25 million people around the world who have fled their home countries because of a well-founded fear of being persecuted. America has always been regarded as a refuge for people fleeing despotic countries to escape religious and politica

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I suppose the following words could be considered just a couple more rants about things political. There’s a lot of that in the air these days. But, I hope not. Two current subjects have been eating at me for some time. Both amount to efforts by the media and nearly everyone else to fit yesterday’s words and actions int

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The legitimate object of government is to do for a community of people whatever they need to have done, but cannot do at all, or cannot do as well for themselves, in their separate and individual capacities. ► Abraham Lincoln … an attack phrase on centralized federal authority and massive taxation and expenditure.

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The two foundational pillars of Republican (read Trump) economic policy – tax cuts and tariffs – have settled in on the country like so much else has for the last two and a half years. They are the product of ignorance, misdirection, wishful thinking and lies. First, let’s review the bidding on the 2017 Trump tax cut

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He came close to becoming governor of Idaho. Ray Rigby was for a time a candidate for governor of Idaho, as a Democrat, in 1970. But only for a while; he didn’t file, and wasn’t on the ballot, and didn’t get very close to the office that year. But in the process he and the eventual nominee and governor, Cecil Andrus,

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This week in Boise there will be an interim committee meeting on Monday. By the time you read this they will be back home, not done with their work, but maybe started. The title of the committee is the “Equitable Assessment of Costs Related to Medicaid Expansion”. I applaud the legislature for looking carefully at costs

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Take this statement: “We are losing billions of dollars through on-going trade deficits and it has to stop.” Is this true or false? It is the mainstay of Trump’s attitude towards foreign trade. It does have a seductive ring to it, and a recent CBS poll says that six in ten of us favor Trump’s efforts. Some recent ma

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Pointy-headed scientists make life in these United States way too complicated. They always want to study a problem to death and, once they have reached a consensus on how to fix it, they want to spend tons of money on a cure. We need to simplify the process with less scientific study and more gut-inspired action. Take the i

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I’m feeling something I never thought I would. I’ve got actual symptom of “Trump burnout.” I’m at the stage of turning off the TV whenever his face or voice are present. I avoid conversations if they turn to his latest lie or his most recent outrageous act. I listen only to satellite music in the car rather than t

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How much is a college education worth? How much is it worth to have attended, or obtained a degree from, the “right” college? Rounding out the trio of questions: How much should it be worth? We can get at such questions through the doorway of credentialism, a term almost begging for widespread use on either the politica

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“I am not a member of any organized political party,” the cowboy comic Will Rogers famously said. “I am a Democrat.” Democrats fight among themselves, argue about the future of their party and display a genuine affinity for forming a circular firing squadron whenever an election looms. Joe Biden is being attacked fo

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