Columnists

When evil comes armed

I learned there is no good way to explain a mass-shootings to a seven-year-old. But I don’t have to. My son does. My daughters do. I wouldn’t be able to. No one has ever explained it to me. I once believed mass-killing was an act of insanity. That the murderer was urged on by voices in ...

Trespassers will be soaked on sight

As a homeowner, not only are you responsible for defending your house from appliances that insist on breaking and children that insist on breaking them, you’re also responsible for warding off pests. These can take many forms: rodents, ants, neighbors’ kids, etc. For the last several months ...

ASK AUGUSTINE

The words Laus Deo are displayed in our nation’s capital. What do those words mean and where and why are they displayed? The best answer to your question is contained in a past “Westminster Fellowship” newsletter; in which its editor, James E. Tuckett, attributes the following to Don ...

Future Files

Crude oil prices fell sharply this week amidst ongoing concerns about a glut of U.S. crude oil that could get worse if refineries are affected by Tropical Storm Nate. The storm is projected to travel northward through the Gulf of Mexico and hit Louisiana, potentially crossing paths with dozens ...

Fighting Off the ‘Monsters’

I remember when my son was old enough to sleep in a toddler bed. For a period of about two months, each night our son was persistent on us sleeping in his room. We would wait until we “thought” he was asleep, and quietly sneak out of his room only to find out he wasn’t completely asleep. ...

Celebrating healthy eating as part of National School Lunch Week

Mark your calendar for National School Lunch Week. Created in 1962 by President John F. Kennedy, National School Lunch Week celebrates the benefits of the National School Lunch Program. This year, Marshalltown School Nutrition Services will recognize National School Lunch Week from Oct. ...

‘It Never Ends’

Before I started attending Kent State in the fall of 1975, I was a kid living in small-town Ashtabula, Ohio, on the northern edge of a county by the same name, which had lost 26 servicemen in the Vietnam War. Our state total was 3,094, ranking us fifth in casualties. I don’t remember seeing ...

Supreme Court Needs Just to Reaffirm Equal Population Requirement

Next week, the Supreme Court will hear oral argument in Gill v. Whitford, a case challenging Wisconsin’s legislative district lines as an unconstitutional Republican gerrymander. It’s attracted attention because many high-minded commentators have blamed partisan gerrymandering for today’s ...

Billy Joel rocks on

A search recently for good “road” music uncovered a number of Billy Joel CDs. They stirred my memory about his appearance on the “Tonight Show” some time ago. His interview with host Jimmy Fallon inspired my better half to purchase “KOHU,EPT” (translated from Russian as ...

Dying Brings Clarity

In April of 2016, doctors wheeled me in to a cardiac ICU. My breathing, more and more labored over several months, had become even harder. My blood oxygen level had fallen. What I thought was allergies turned out to be blood clots filling up my lungs over several months. On that day, I was ...

We were idiots then

We were such idiots then. That realization is, if you are a guy, an unavoidable hazard of seeing the new movie, “Battle of the Sexes.” The film, in which Emma Stone and Steve Carell recreate the 1973 tennis face-off between “women’s libber” Billie Jean King and “male chauvinist ...

Where do I put the money?

Dear Dave, I have a savings account for my two-year old that has $5,000 in it, and about half of that is in gold. I’m going to save for his college separately, and give this to him to help start his life after school. Is there a better place to put this other than a traditional savings ...

Judge Moore & God’s Law

When elected chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court in 2000, Judge Roy Moore installed in his courthouse a monument with the Ten Commandments that Moses brought down from Mount Sinai carved into it. Told by a federal court his monument violated the separation of church and state, Moore ...

Democrats, Don’t Blame the Voters Who Are Not Racist

One of the great fringe benefits of working around American politics during the past 10 American presidencies has been the colorful characters I’ve gotten to meet. Characters do not come more colorful than Dick Tuck. Having just learned that he had lost a California state Senate primary, he ...

‘The things that bind’

I learned that if one were to observe three different babies, all three born totally blind and all three from vastly different parts of the world; one's father herds goats on the African Savannah, another's father owns oil wells on the Caspian, the last one's father sells insurance in Des ...

Vacation journal: The ride into oblivion

Editor’s note: This is from the Van De Walle Collection, originally published Oct. 23, 2016. Dear Journal, It’s the calm before the storm that is strapping an annoyed, tired, hungry, squirming whine machine into a car for the first eight of a 12-hour journey. And that’s just me. The ...

Merkel misses the mark

German Chancellor Angela Merkel suffered a major electoral setback this week, muddying the outlook for her rule and the future of the European Union. Germany’s two mainstream parties, the Christian Democratic Union and the Social Democrats both lost substantial support to fringe parties, ...

Disabled by Government

A third threat to free speech at University of California, Berkeley has led to more censorship than political rioters or college administrators. It’s the Americans with Disabilities Act. Berkeley is expensive. Out of state students must pay $60,000 a year. But for five years, Berkeley ...

Kodet, Rose

Taste of Central Iowa

Autumn goodness October means fall recipes ... here are three: Pumpkin Cheesecake Bars 1 pkg. pound cake mix 3 eggs, divided 2 Tbls.. butter, melted 4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice, divided 1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened 1 can sweetened condensed milk 1 can (15 oz.) ...

Medicare by the numbers

Dear Readers: Have you been waiting for a new MEDICARE CARD, one that might protect your identity better? Your wait will be over soon. Here’s the scoop: Your current Medicare card probably has your Social Security number on it. Medicare strongly suggests that seniors and others who ...