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Columns

  • Guest Opinion | John Hendrickson

    Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad signed the historic collective bargaining reform legislation that provides public employee contract negotiations to be limited only to wages. Supporters of the reform measure argue that public employees need to pay more for their health benefits to make it more equitable with those in the private sector. In addition, the reform measure will save Iowa taxpayers money, just as a similar reform measure, Act 10, in Wisconsin saved $5 billion.

  • The Time Capsule | Roy Marshall

    A century ago this month, our front pages were about the U.S. entry into World War I. Between now and the 100th anniversary of the armistice of November 1918, we’ll be reminded of various events that took place during that war. 

    Because this column looks for Iowa connections and stories you might not otherwise hear, this week we’ll delve into the Lusitania, an illegitimate offspring, a Welshman from Ottumwa, and a strange lawsuit. 

  • Masters MIAs

    The golf world gathers around The Masters this week, and there will be two palpable absences.

  • Montgomery County History Center | Dave McFarland

    Having been a history teacher for a number of years, I would hate to count the number of time I have heard the comment, “History is boring.” 

  • Miner Queries | Cherie Miner

    I was having flashbacks last Monday morning. It started after my husband left for an appointment, leaving the basement TV tuned to the House Intelligence Committee hearing. As I loaded laundry, I began to hear the testimony of FBI Director James Comey and NSA Director Michael Rogers.

    Suddenly, I was 10 years old again, listening as my parents watched the Watergate hearings unfold. And like my parents then, once I began to listen, I couldn’t turn off the TV.

  • The Time Capsule | Roy Marshall
  • On the Side| Brad Hicks

    I’m not sure where Snow White and the other six dwarfs are, but Grumpy found himself at the keyboard in the past week. To wit:

    • Instead of always trying to figure out what someone is saying, take the person at his or her word. Most of the time, an order for a hamburger is an order for a hamburger, not a pro-carnivore social statement.

    • If you want me to join your fight, don’t put me in a position to defend your bad actions.

  • The Time Capsule | Roy Marshall

    Marlow Blum is a truck driver from Westlake, Ohio, a suburb of Cleveland. A few weeks ago he passed through Red Oak, stopped at Cubby’s to eat, and browsed the pages of a Red Oak Express. In that edition was a column having to do with obscure holidays. It concluded with a reference to March 20, which is National Alien Abduction Day. 

  • On the Side| Brad Hicks

    The latest developments in Des Moines indicate tax revenue growth is slowing even more than anticipated, so more state funds will have to be limited – unless the governor gets his way and the GOP leadership spends some rainy day funds.

    Republican legislative leaders are now saying that all tax credits and tax exemptions are on the table for review. 

  • Miner Queries | Cherie Miner

    Will repealing Obamacare (ACA) affect me?

    Since Republicans rolled out their plans to repeal and replace Obamacare (Affordable Care Act or ACA) last week, most of us have been asking that question. And the answer is yes.

    The new plan, called “The American Health Care Plan,” would kick millions of people off the plans they currently have, according to many health policy experts.