Opinions

Sat
09
Dec

There wasn’t always money for presents

During this time of year, I find myself reminiscing about past Christmases. I enjoy the memories, even the painful ones.

I love Christmas trees, and I can still picture several of them from my childhood. Dad was responsible for getting the tree. To him, a tree was just a tree; he didn’t pay attention to the size or shape. I remember one year he went down to our swamp. He brought back an awful tree; actually, it resembled a Charlie Brown tree. My mother was not at all satisfied with it, and after that they went to a tree lot and bought one.

Mother took such pride in our tree. She spent hours and hours decorating it. The tinsel (we called them icicles) had to hang down perfectly straight. We didn’t have cookie cutters, but Dad made some wonderful cutouts. He asked what animals we wanted and he cut out wonderful cows, deer, horses, camels, elephants, etc. Mother tied the cookies onto the tree with brightly colored ribbon.

Sat
09
Dec

Mr. Moneybags doesn’t need a tax break

To the editor:

I probably shouldn’t be surprised that they are at it again. I’m not talking about the small business class. I’m talking about the business class that is already flushed with money and can expect a lot more with the largest big-business friendly tax overhaul ever.

The story goes this way: Mr. Moneybags pays less in taxes, so he can start a new factory where Joe Sixpack can apply for a job, but we are at a time of the lowest unemployment in the past 20 years. Will they be high-wage jobs?

It’s called trickle-down economics, and it has never worked in the past 100 years. Why doesn’t it work? Because it makes no sense.

Mr. Moneybags doesn’t need his tax return to buy Nike shoes, dinner at Olive Garden or Ford cars. Give the average person of modest means $100, and they will return the favor, and it will be in their very own community. Everybody wins, even Mr. Moneybags because he owns the factories or owns shares in the public companies.

Sat
09
Dec

Thanksgiving dinner was a success

To the editor:

Hi, folks. For the last 15 years, there are very clear choices that we Knights and Lady Knights make when we decide to put community and families first.

We would like to thank all those businesses and people for your generous donations toward the St. Kateri Tekakwitha Council 12185 Elmo Novelli and Alvin J. Rathsack Memorial Thanksgiving Dinner, Knights and Lady Knights and all those community members who have donated their time with preparations of food, delivering dinners, cooking, serving and cleaning to make this special occasion a reality.

Our 15th Thanksgiving dinner served 311 sit-down meals, and we delivered 396 meals to Shawano, Keshena, West Branch, Neopit, Zoar, South Branch and Cecil.

Paul A. Marroquin,

Grand Knight,

St. Kateri Tekakwitha Council Knights of Columbus

Sat
09
Dec

Many school districts fail test on records

State law makes nearly all governmental records open to inspection and copying, and requires custodians to release records “as soon as possible and without delay.”

So how are they doing?

Recently, the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty conducted an experiment to see how well school districts are complying with the state’s Open Records Law.

We asked the state’s 20 largest school districts for records from the last two years relating to their compliance procedures and how quickly they fulfilled requests. The results were tabulated in a recent report. Here are some highlights:

The good: Of the 12 school districts that fulfilled our request without charging a fee, six of them (Appleton, Green Bay, Janesville, Racine, Waukesha and West Allis-West Milwaukee) reported response times, on average, of 10 business days or fewer.

Sat
09
Dec

House gets cluttered in search for things

Somehow, even though I knew that it was December and having a house in order is a sensible thing, my house got in disorder shortly after Thanksgiving. I was feeling at a loss when I finished putting up the Christmas lights outside. Sure, I could putter around with them more, or get Christmas items up in the house; but I turned my attention to other things inside instead.

I was determined to find that baby quilt I had started a couple months back and put away. However, no matter how often I looked where I thought it should be, it remained undiscovered. It got me thinking about other things I knew I had, but had forgotten where they were.

Sat
09
Dec

The Lost Is Found

The panicky feeling that settles quickly deep inside when something is lost can be overwhelming. To the degree one registers that feeling is measured by how valuable the item is that’s lost.

This past Thanksgiving, my family came over to share the bounty and give thanks for all we have been given throughout the year. It was a good day, full of prayerful gratefulness, laughter and, of course, food. In our family, we are blessed to have three little grandnieces, two of whom came with their momma and daddy that day.

They were all preparing to leave when I noticed the library book I had placed on a small table in the kitchen was not there. I knew as I was getting ready for the day, I’d questioned my decision to leave my book in such a prominent spot. Brushing the thought aside, I’d busied myself with preparations. I wish I would have heeded my own thoughts.

Thu
07
Dec

INDOOR GARDEN GIFTS

For many gardeners, keeping that green thumb active during the winter months can become a challenge. We long to get our hands dirty and dig in to outdoor gardening projects as winter marches on. If you have a gardener on your gift list, here are a some great ideas to spread the joy of indoor gardening this holiday season.

Bulbs for forcing: Forcing bulbs now at the start of the season for bloom later this winter and early in the spring is a great way to bring that color and fragrance indoors. Buy bulbs for forcing and pot them up. Place in a cool location. Most bulbs require 12 to 16 weeks of cold treatment before they are ready to bring indoors or to a warmer spot to begin forcing.

Sat
02
Dec

World War II veteran remembers serving on Meredith


Vaughn W. Collicott

Contributed Photo Vaughn Collicott served aboared the USS Meredith DD726 during World War II.

The sun was shining as I headed to Home Plate Café to have breakfast with Vaughn Collicott, World War II Navy veteran.

We ordered our breakfast and chatted while drinking coffee. Mr. Collicott brought with him memorabilia including medals, pictures, his honorable discharge papers, and a letter he sent to the deputy director of naval history giving his personal recollection of the bombing of the Meredith.

Vaughn was born in Nebraska on Oct. 18, 1923. When he was one year old, his family, which consisted of his parents, two sisters and three brothers, traveled by covered wagon with a caravan of two other families. They settled in Walworth County.

Vaughn recently lost his wife of 70½ years, Doris. Their daughter, Diana, lives in Edgerton. They lost a son to liver cancer.

Sat
02
Dec

Sometimes things don’t go as planned

I knew I was having a bad day when I overslept, and my body was resisting picking up the pace.

Somehow, all the plans I had made for the day were being remade in my mind. Then, when I was about ready to sit down to breakfast, I remembered a project that I was going to do and drop off while I was in Shawano.

I have a small copier to print stuff from the computer, but it also copies sheets of paper when I need to make copies of something. It is a simple contraption that works excellent, unless there is operator error, which there was.

If I don’t do it right, I have to do it over, I thought. So I did it over, and then it stopped printing mid-page, and the change ink cartridge warning beeped. I have had this printer for several years, and it normally starts printing lighter and lighter, or doesn’t print everything, and then I know it is time for new. However, if it wants to quit mid page, we will change the ink cartridge.

Sat
25
Nov

County needs to send message on voting districts

To the editor:

On Nov. 14, I appeared before the Shawano County Board to urge them to consider a resolution that asks the state Legislature to create a nonpartisan redistricting process for drawing Wisconsin’s state and congressional voting maps.

Every 10 years after the U.S. Census, states are required to redraw our voting districts with the new census data. Under our current system, the political party in the majority draws the maps. This is a clear conflict of interest.

Politicians combine census data with voter information to draw districts that favor their party. Now there are software advances that allow gerrymandering with shocking precision. Before the GOP redrew Wisconsin’s district maps in 2011, Democrats held 52 seats in the Assembly after winning 57 percent of the vote. Four years later, Democrats won 52 percent of the Wisconsin Assembly votes but held only 39 seats.

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