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Editorial

Yemen developments raise questions

In January, President Barack Obama referred to U.S. anti-terrorism efforts in Yemen as a "model" for avoiding massive deployments of American troops.In recent days, however, U.S. personnel were evacuated from Yemen. The country had become too dangerous because of an Iranian-backed insurgency ...

This measure must be approved

Of course, Congress should approve a measure to prevent steep cuts in amounts the Medicare program would pay health care providers. And of course President Barack Obama should sign it into law.Otherwise, many doctors and other health care professionals will stop accepting Medicare patients. ...

Visits to nation’s capital produce results

Visiting our nation's capital is always an adventure.Walking the hallways where history was made and continues to unfold is seductive for even the most jaded among us. One cannot help but be impressed - and maybe made a bit uneasy - by the massive bureaucracy at the governmental heart of the ...

Follow the letter and the spirit of the law

Any meeting with three or more of the Webster County Supervisors is subject to Iowa's open meeting law.In addition to posting a meeting notice at least 24 hours in advance, the law requires that a tentative agenda be provided for any meeting.Following the letter of the law is relatively ...

Rival budget plans have shortcomings

Republicans in Congress are being criticized by liberals for a budget proposal that makes relatively modest cuts in federal spending.In response, Democrats in the House of Representatives have introduced a budget bill almost identical to what President Barack Obama proposes. It makes virtually ...

U.S. should treat Israel with respect

American officials often intervene in the internal affairs of other countries, usually while insisting no such thing is happening. Often, such activities are aimed at undermining unfriendly governments.It comes as no surprise, then, that President Barack Obama's administration attempted to ...

Area heroes deserve strong praise

People whose positive actions go far beyond the ordinary warrant particular praise. That's why the American Red Cross launched what has become an annual tribute to individuals who accomplish the remarkable.At the Heroes of the Heartland event, Tuesday at Willow Ridge Restaurant and Golf Course, ...

Gift makes new auditorium possible

Finding the funds to turn worthwhile projects from dreams into realities is a challenge for towns of all sizes. Small communities in rural Iowa often have to forgo or delay such undertakings because the money simply cannot be found to pay for them.Fortunately, generous people often step forward ...

New EPA target may hurt farmers

Farmers are in the Environmental Protection Agency's crosshairs now. Unless more Americans wake up to the consequences of the agency's strategy of using disinformation to divide and conquer, many families who till the land will become victims.Ohio Farm Bureau members attending an event in ...

Not exactly an ‘era of open government’

Early in his presidency, Barack Obama pledged it would "usher in a new era of open government." His administration has done just the opposite.Government is more secretive than ever. The policy is pursued even when officials know they are breaking the law.Federal law requires that government ...

It’s time for spring and farming

Agriculture is at the very heart of life in the Hawkeye State and especially so as spring unfolds. The renewal of the earth is also a time when the pace quickens on Iowa's 88,000 farms.According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture a huge portion ...

ACA fines may affect millions across U.S.

Millions of Americans already have learned that?the Affordable Care Act is hazardous to their financial health. Now, as federal income tax returns are being prepared, as many as 4 million more may find the law taking a bite out of their bank accounts.From provisions harmful to small employers ...

We need, open transparent government

Below are a few examples of "winners" and "sinners" in the area of open, transparent government.Winners Retired Des Moines Police Chief Judy Bradshaw, who set out to improve openness and transparency in the department when she took the helm in 2007. During her tenure as Chief she increased ...

Secret Service misconduct continues

After a string of scandals and failures involving the agency's key duty of protecting the president and first family, President Barack Obama was urged to appoint an outsider to head the Secret Service.A hard-nosed stranger to the Secret Service's good-old-boy and -girl network was needed to ...

Help celebrate National Ag Day

In just a few days, another winter will come to an end.As another growing season approaches, today has been set as National Ag Day by the Agriculture Council of America.One goal of Ag Day is to recognize the contribution agriculture makes in the lives of all of us. The council sponsors and ...

What we don’t know can be bad for us

Most Americans are not old enough to remember the ongoing, intense controversy over what happened to 18 1/2 minutes of tapes secretly recorded in then-President Richard Nixon's office in 1972. Though no one knew what the erased part of the hundreds of hours the tapes contained, Nixon was under ...

This project needs to be concluded

The problems that have prevented a new prison from opening in Fort Madison are quickly turning the situation into one of the more notorious fiascos involving state tax money in recent Iowa history.It's perhaps rising to the embarrassment level of the film tax credit and the Central Iowa ...

This is Sunshine Week across America

Democracy functions best when the public has access to detailed information about what government officials do and why they do it.Iowa and most other states have what are called "sunshine" laws. They require most public business to be conducted in meetings open to the public. There are also ...

Clinton’s email explanation falls short

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who seems all but certain to be a candidate for president, is telling voters that on matters of importance to every American, we will have to trust her. Not just once, but 30,000 times.During four years as the nation's chief diplomat, Clinton ignored ...

The campaign against evil widens

In what counts - displays of pure evil - there is no difference between Islamic State terrorists in Iraq, Syria and Libya and their cousins with Boko Haram in Nigeria.Both organizations should be eradicated.Boko Haram has recently announced it is affiliated with the IS. That is something like ...