Editorials

Wed
03
Feb

Back In My Day

Now that I have kids, I find myself using “Back in my day…” quite often. I always used to scoff at those who talked that way, and now, here I am, doing the same. I see the conversations every snow day of Facebook amongst those I grew up with; we ALWAYS had school, we never got out, kids don’t know what it’s like, etc.  
Fact of the matter is simple, times are changing. No longer can buses try busting through snow drifts in an attempt to pick up students. Gone are the days of sliding down E Street while trying to stop at St. Michael’s. Frankly, I’m shocked that even with any snow on the ground, kids have school.
Wed
03
Feb

Quick Quips

• This political season and the upcoming election deadline has made me think about what is needed in the world.
There are two people who the world needs more of, especially in politics: Bruce Swartz and Joe Carlson.
I have known Fairbury native Bruce Swartz since 1997. I feel that every city, county, state and nation needs a Bruce Swartz. He speaks his mind. Whether people like it or not, you must admit he always has a point to his views.
As a city council member, Bruce was fearless. No issue, no matter how mundane or controversial, was out-of-bounds. 
He tackled issues head on, with zeal, gusto, and a little bit of showmanship. He did all of these things for one simple reason: he believes in his ideals and dearly, truly loves this community.
The world needs more politicians like Bruce, who do things for the love of something, not the power, nor the greed.
Wed
03
Feb

Letters to the Editor

Impressed With Crew

Editor: 
We were impressed with Fairbury Norris Public Power team as they cleared trees from our line. Their skill and safety was great. We are proud of this “not just for pay” crew that you can count on.
Dwaine and Vernadine Friesen
Fairbury, Neb
Wed
03
Feb

A Simple Act Of Kindness Goes A Long Way

Anyone who knows me—truly knows me—knows that at heart, I’m a very critical person. I am apt to always look for the way in which things can be improved. 
Whether that’s from casting a light on not-so-exuberant issues within the county, the nation and the world in an effort to dispel their shadows, or simply taking issue with the way the world is because it seems that to me, and many others with whom I’ve spoken, that the game of life is rigged, I truly am a cynic.
Although there are benefits to having a healthy dose of cynicism—for example, having some degree of cynicism helps to prepare me for the worst that life can throw at me because I am already expecting some form of negative return from life—one needs to balance that pessimism with some inoculation to keep from slipping too far into the pit of despair.
Wed
03
Feb

The Blizzard That Either Was Or Was Not

By the time you read this we either did get a ‘snowpacolypse’ or we didn’t. No matter whether it did bury us in snow or not, I am not a happy camper.
If it did end up a blizzard I’m not happy about it because I do not like snow. If it didn’t blizzard I’m not happy about it because that’s all that anyone talked about for the last five days.
If it did end up a blizzard I’m not happy about it because my body aches from shoveling, snow blowing and ice-melt spreading. If it didn’t blizzard I’m not happy about it because my body aches from of all the time I spent getting the snow shovel sharpened, the snow blower running and finding where I put the ice melt.
Wed
27
Jan

Recapping This Legislative Session Thus Far

Bill introduction came to a close on Wednesday, the 20th. In the end, about 450 new bills were introduced, adding to the 664 that were introduced last session. Those 446 new bills (as well as a few proposals for state constitutional amendments) will receive hearings before one of the standing committees, and those committees will decide whether to advance them to the floor or not. 
Given the number of carryover bills (bills which were introduced last session, but never debated on the floor) the likelihood is that most of those 446 bills (as well as most of the carryover bills) will not see action this year. Some bills are introduced to keep discussions alive about particular issues, or to see who will come out and support or oppose a bill, so that a senator--looking ahead--can determine how to proceed on a particular issue into the future. 
Wed
27
Jan

Dire Warnings Point To Higher Local Power Rates

Don’t kill the messenger. That should be the mentality that all customers of Fairbury’s electric utility should be reminding themselves of. Last week’s comment by Fairbury City Auditor Brian Blobaum that the light department is bleeding red ink is most unwelcome, yet not surprising news.
 Blobaum told members of the Fairbury City Council that the electric department lost more than one million dollars in 2015. This is the second consecutive annual loss of that nature for the Fairbury utility. The light department also finished more than a million dollars in the red in 2014 and nearly a half a million dollars the previous year.
 Again, don’t kill the messenger. The city auditor gets paid to compile numbers and give a financial “state of the community” assessment, if you will.
Wed
27
Jan

Hack, Cough, Sniffle, Wheeze; I’m Still Hanging In There

A business associate of mine told me last week that I looked gaunt. “Are you eating?” she asked. ‘Yes, but everything tastes like phlegm,” I replied. That’s not a pretty mental picture.
Except for four days when I was at a trade show in Florida, I have had either the flu or a nagging cold. Keep in mind I have had both the flu shot and that “remedy” designed to ward off and shorten colds. Neither, in my estimation, have worked.
Jefferson County Treasurer Leroy Bast and I used to have this running joke. When we worked at the Journal-News together it seemed like both of us either were getting or just getting over a cold. We used to call it our ‘semi-annual, six month cold.’ When we see each other on the street one of us will ask the other “you got it yet?” then we laugh. Well the laughing is over.
Wed
20
Jan

Warning Signs

This past week, Husker Nation lost a great.  
In a pure football respect, Lawrence Phillips was one of the best to ever suit up for the Big Red, it would be hard to argue that.  
In his time at the university, he set records, and was ahead of his time in his running style and instincts for the game.  
However, he was far more troubled than anyone at that time really knew.  Whether or not it was Osborne’s influence that kept him in check for those years, or whether he hadn’t quite hit that wall yet, after he left the Huskers, it was all downhill.
There’s little doubt to me that if he had been able to keep his head on his shoulders, he could have been a great back in the NFL for years. 
Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for him to start his downward spiral. After several arrests, he landed in prison. Then, at the age of just 40, he took his own life in prison.
Wed
20
Jan

Quick Quips

• Having a child with Autism means facing challenges every single day. Interruptions in schedules are particularly sticky situations for my son. As he gets into a groove, and then something changes, which throws his world off kilter and it takes a few weeks to get back to normal.
Having recently moved, he is not familiar with the environment. His night time ritual is interrupted and he does not sleep well anyway, so to throw his mental and physical cycles off with sleep is a nightmare, pardon the pun.
Elijah sleeps close to seven hours a night, but not in a row. He will generally sleep for three to four hours and then get up and will go from his bed to the couch or the recliner to the couch or just be awake for a while.
I hope in a few weeks he will get into a rhythm with the house and start sleeping more. He gets my wife up nightly when he can’t sleep, therefore she doesn’t sleep. We all need a good rest.

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