Columnists

Dialing back anti-coal rules

What angered many Americans about former President Barack Obama’s war on coal was that it was intended as a campaign of extermination. Obama and others who hate the very idea of coal knew, but didn’t care, about efforts to develop “clean coal” technology. Perhaps that was because ...

Justice vs. Carmichael

Jim Justice’s row with Mitch Carmichael shows the perils of party switching and ideological purity. Justice is a pragmatist while the GOP leader is a rigid Tea Partyier. Both are trying to persuade Donald Trump to weigh in to support their position. It would be a struggle with national ...

Doomed route?

Impeachment is a political act dressed up as a simple matter of legalities. Used sparingly in most of America’s history it has blossomed as a tactic. From the first time it was employed against President Andrew Johnson for replacing Secretary of War Edwin Stanton to the farcical applications ...

Vacation Bible Schools in session across Barbour County

Hello from Barbour County! June arrived, and with it came cooler weather. It doesn’t seem like June, but that’s OK. There’s nothing we can do about the weather, and I like it when it’s not so hot. The hummingbirds are back! You may remember that I wrote recently that I haven’t ...

Augusta welcomes new leadership

Seth Young and Emily Miller will bring terrific new energy to the Augusta Heritage Center. They both have a long history with Davis & Elkins College and a deep understanding of local folkloric traditions. They each have considerable musical talent and the ability to intuit the developmental ...

Politicians and charters

Put yourself in the position of a county board of education member in West Virginia. In terms of the bugaboo much of the public school establishment has been wringing its hands and gnashing its teeth over — charter schools — you’re in the driver’s seat, at least if the Student Success ...

Tackling a question

Perhaps William Barr has inadvertently figured out a path for Donald Trump to explain his behavior to the public. In comments, Barr criticized the “praetorians” among member of the press and security services who see their roles as being self-appointed protectors of the republic. Barr’s ...

Attack mode

Perhaps one of the greatest gifts given to then-candidate Donald Trump was provided in the form of political correctness. Hillary Clinton used it in every possible way concerning conservatism. As Trump rocked his rallies with a number of outrageous gags, Clinton pretended that this was a ...

Summer is time to take a trip to the pool in Barbour County

Hello from Barbour County! I did receive some response about my hummingbird question in the last column. It seems that I am not the only one who misses the daily visits from the cute little birds this year. It’s kinda strange to me as to what has happened that they are so scarce, but ...

First Friday at Kump Education Center

Now that Kump Education Center is included in the Elkins Main Street District, we are planning First Friday activities for each summer month. Friday, June 7 will be a time when children can help plant a small garden bed at Kump Center and learn why bee hives help gardens grow. Each First ...

America’s longest war

America’s longest war — neither Vietnam nor Afghanistan — shows no sign of even winding down, much less ending. To the contrary, the death toll may continue to increase. Veterans of military service rightly point to the Vietnam and Afghan wars as the longest, in most respects, in U.S. ...

Democrats need to look at strategy

Once again Democratic strategists have become entranced with the idea that if they dominate the middle in the 2020 campaign, they will defeat Donald Trump. As in 2016 when they believed Hillary Clinton was a sure bet, Democrats assumed all voters live in their political universe. Indeed, they ...

Teachers working toward certification

Four promising Randolph County teachers met at Kump Education Center May 23 to explore the possibility of becoming National Board certified teachers. They plan to attend meetings in Clarksburg, June 18-20, to learn more about this unique program. If any local teachers would like to join our ...

Defending the Second Amendment

For West Virginians, guns are part of our way of life. The Second Amendment guarantees our right as Americans to keep and bear arms. Whether for self-defense or sport, our right to own guns is protected by the U.S. Constitution. In Washington, D.C., the new House Majority under the leadership ...

Let joy ring out

Let the joy ring out! If there was one word to describe the atmosphere in Harper-McNeeley Auditorium on May 11 during the 110th Commencement Ceremonies of Davis & Elkins College, it would be “joy.” Joy was obvious on the faces and in the hearts of graduates, families, trustees, faculty, ...

Postponing education talk

It appears Republican leaders in the West Virginia Legislature are doing precisely what I suggested last week that they might. They are pulling the rug right out from under the feet of the state’s three big public school employee unions. Union leaders are not happy about that. In March, ...

Bolton’s agenda

John Bolton, that fierce advocate of wars someone else has to fight, apparently has begun to get on the nerves of his boss, President Donald J. Trump. It seems that Trump worries that his national security director might force him to fight conflicts he does not want. Indeed, at the height of ...

Barbour County rainy weather living up to an old saying

Hello from Barbour County! I haven’t been seeing as many hummingbirds this year as I have in the past. I’ve only seen them a couple times, and last year, I saw them almost every day around the feeder. Has anyone else been noticing this, or is it just me that they are avoiding? My mom ...

We must not shortchange children

West Virginia government is dysfunctional these days. We have an absentee governor and legislators who cannot write laws. Legislators will be paid extra tax dollars to correct errors in bills that the governor had to veto because they were technically incorrect when they were rushed through ...

Developing a game plan

Public school shutdowns in 2018 and earlier this year were masterful displays of strategy and tactics by the three unions representing many West Virginia public school employees, as I’ve written previously. The 2018 effort garnered national attention and served as a template for unions in ...