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  • Big Sky Stories
  • Big Sky Stories

    As Montana goes, so might go the rest of the nation in the Big Money 2012 election.
      Sick of the presidential race yet? What makes it even more annoying is that they are starting earlier and earlier. Consider Tim Pawlenty — seemingly competent guy, ran an entire state. He’s already quit the race — five months before anybody takes a vote that actually counts.
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  • Indelible Day
  • Indelible Day

    A Fourth of July dispatch from the nation's capitol.
      NATIONAL MALL, WASHINGTON, D.C. — Over in the Smithsonian’s American History Museum, you can see the original Star-Spangled Banner. They keep it under low light in a tightly controlled environment. Way back, they used to haul it out and fly it on the Fourth of July.
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  • The Fourth Day
  • The Fourth Day

    What if the Confederacy had won the Battle of Gettysburg?
      It´s one of the great what-ifs of the Civil War, which started 150 years ago: What if the Confederacy had won the Battle of Gettysburg? Answer: They probably would have won the war. But what makes the exercise particularly compelling this week is the fact that the Union surrender could have happened on the Fourth of July.
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  • Robamacare
  • Robamacare

    Republicans scramble to distance themselves from a plan they used to like.
      Presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty got a great zinger when he called the Massachusetts health care system “Obamneycare.” It’s because before there was Obamacare — specifically the rule to require everyone to buy health insurance — Mitt Romney enacted the same policy in Massachusetts.
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  • More Than A Game
  • More Than A Game

    What would Clarence Darrow say about the NFL and NBA disputes?
      With two new biographies just out, Clarence Darrow is back in the public eye — and right on time, as America is simmering in that age-old cauldron of labor versus capital. Although best known for his work in the Scopes trial, most of his more than 2,000 cases were spent defending workers’ rights.
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  • Anderson's Coup
  • Anderson's Coup

    Do increased ratings for Anderson Cooper mean we're returning to real news?
      A funny thing happened on TV last month, and I’m not talking about Scotty the Hottie winning Idol or Oprah leaving a hole where America’s heart used to be. No, I’m talking a little f
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  • The Power of Why
  • The Power of Why

    Your kids may annoy you with questions, but da Vinci was the same way.
      If you’re around an 8-year-old much, you know the word. With eyes wide open, and a sponge for a brain, they want answers. “Why is pop fizzy?” “Why do plants need dirt?” “Why do I have five toes?” “Why?” It’s a constant reminder of that basic need of humanity — to understand.
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  • Nickel and Dimed
  • Nickel and Dimed

    There are fees for everything these days. But are we just getting the government we’ve asked for?
      Oh, there’s more. This summer, if you want to visit our state parks, it’s free — unless you want to bring your car. Then it’s $10. If you want to do the right thing by purchasing one of those electric cars, the state has something for you — a bill! That’s right, it’ll be $100 a year to go electric.
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  • Span of Years
  • Span of Years

    My year-span stretches back to 1919. How about yours?
      But there is this one fun thing to do. Take your age and subtract it from the year you were born. For me, that winds up at 1919. Yeah, it makes you feel old — but it also connects you to what can seem like pretty distant history. Think of it as your year-span.
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  • Jobs, Not Jihad
  • Jobs, Not Jihad

    Bin Laden is dead. What now?
      As Osama bin Laden’s story has come to a much-deserved end, it’s only human to view it as a relief, a moment of closure, even victory. But it’s more complicated than that. The last decade has changed America profoundly, and we continue to evolve in how we deal with the most dangerous parts of the planet.
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  • Bye, Bye Rain
  • Bye, Bye Rain

    On Bloomsday and royal weddings.
      If they could have waited a few days until the month of May, they’d have been fine. After all, May is when the weather gets good — right? At least that’s what Don Kardong says — why else would he have made Bloomsday on the first Sunday of May? For the weather, that’s why — it’s guaranteed perfect!.
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  • Still Growing
  • Still Growing

    The U.S. Census numbers show Spokane is still on the move. Now what?
      With all the doom and gloom these past couple years, it was easy to downplay last month’s release of U.S. Census data. When the dollar seems to be shrinking, nobody pays attention to anything else. But we have confirmation: The Inland Northwest is growing.
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  • Local is Best
  • Local is Best

    Many of the winners of our 18th annual readers poll were small, local businesses
      But there’s one thing, in particular, that strikes me every year — how many small, local businesses get votes in our poll. Our readers seem to know in their bones that local economies thrive on local businesses.
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  • The Zagfather
  • The Zagfather

    Father Cataldo's mission lives on.
      Even though I went to Cataldo School up at St. Augustine’s Parish as a kid, I had no idea who Father Joseph Cataldo was — until now. On the occasion of the Gonzaga schools’ 125th anniversary next year, I called in Robert Carriker, the Gonzaga University history professor and expert on Jesuit history, to tell us about the old Sicilian.
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  • Past and Present
  • Past and Present

    The Inlander's new offices come with a new perspective on Spokane
      Next came the lean years, when at least one advertiser said they’d start running ads after we proved we could stay alive for a couple years. Low overhead was key, and Mom and Dad (Jeanne and Ted Sr.) bought us a little fixer-upper on West Dean. Our conference room was in the kitchen; we had an intern work out of a closet.
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  • Rummy's Rules
  • Rummy's Rules

    Robert Gates teaches his predecessor something about 'unknown unknowns.'
      Gates seemed to agree with Rumsfeld’s theory of unknown unknowns, but he filtered it through a healthy humility: “When it comes to predicting the nature and location of our next military engagements, since Vietnam our record has been perfect. We have never once gotten it right.
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  • Misplaced Blame
  • Misplaced Blame

    How would the anti-government crowd like a world without roads, dams and police?
      This all started last year with the Tea Party railing against government; then some of them got elected and, along with others already in office, they decided to try out their theories. So we have the spectacle of tens of thousands marching in Madison, Wisc.
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  • Tiny Nibbles
  • Tiny Nibbles

    We'll never eat away at the federal deficit if we only take one bite at a time.
      Compared to this, Egypt was easy. With protestors back to work in Cairo, Barack Obama returned to tend the homefires this week. No biggie — just the nation’s $1.5 trillion budget deficit.
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  • Comeback Time
  • Comeback Time

    What the Super Bowl ads said about the state of our country.
      As a cultural reflection of our times, there’s not much better than the annual phenomenon we call the Super Bowl Ads. There was the year of the sock puppet website ad — who could have gues
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  • Recession TV
  • Recession TV

    The Depression generation had The Grapes of Wrath. We have Storage Wars.
      In Victorian times, the crushing poverty of fast-growing cities was the backdrop for Charles Dickens’ attempts to force a conscience on his countrymen. Horatio Alger argued that even in the face of boom-and-bust post-Civil War America, an individual could pull himself up by his bootstraps to self-reliance.
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  • Tone Deaf
  • Tone Deaf

    Nice try, but partisan rhetoric isn't going away.
      In the wake of the tragedy in Tucson this month, we’ve been hearing a lot about how the tone of our political debate needs to change. Now, just a couple weeks later, the debate over how we debat
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  • Justice Delayed
  • Justice Delayed

    Where's the outrage?
      Spokane County Prosecutor Steve Tucker has again delayed a decision on what to do about the actions of Spokane County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Hirzel. He had said he’d have an answer prior to the election, then he said it would be this week. Now it’s next week.
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  • All for Naught?
  • All for Naught?

    Figuring out what to call the first decade of the 21st century.
      Like I said, it does kind of fit. Maybe there’s another alliteration to consider — the Oughts, as in the decade in which we “ought to” have done something but, instead, did aught, or naught. We ought to have spent less — maybe even saved for a rainy day.
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  • Commons Man
  • Commons Man

    King Cole helped Spokane with a grin and a hope for collective success.
      Don´t underestimate the power of the grin. King Cole’s trademark smile — one of the Expo era’s most memorable features, as local columnist Dorothy Powers called it — probably had more to do with getting a World’s Fair for Spokane than anything else.
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  • Forecast: Drought
  • Forecast: Drought

    The Washington state GOP bet all its hopes on Rossi ... and lost.
      If King County didn’t exist, [Dino] Rossi would be senator. But then, without King County, Washington would be Idaho.— Jim BrunnerThe Seattle TimesNov. 5, 2010One of the most striking thin
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Recent Comments

  • Re: Spark of Change

    • Too funny Muddydog, since your posts are intended as distractions, and you address nor refute…

    • on March 6, 2015
  • Re: Raising the Grade

    • Dear Ted, Do we really have any "Screw Colleges" around this area? I would be…

    • on March 6, 2015
  • Re: Spark of Change

    • If you've actually read his "best selling" books, you might realize the level of his…

    • on March 6, 2015
  • Re: Why Idaho kids don't go to college

    • This is a remarkable story and I hope this periodical submits it for awards wherever…

    • on March 6, 2015
  • Re: Taxi Cab Confessions

    • What about female cab drivers?

    • on March 6, 2015
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