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Coastal Voices: Some hopeful economic signs

I am not a big fan of Sacramento lawmakers or Governor Brown. The omnipresence of state government, its bureaucracy, and endless list of A-Z agencies and commissions overseeing every aspect of our lives has left its dark imprint on California’s gloomy economy.

Tuesday’s Triplicate news article, however, gave me something to be hopeful about.

The Democratic-controlled Assembly and Senate are actually making subtle overtures to work with business and ameliorate the onerous regulatory bureaucracy that plagues the Golden State.

As a first of hopefully many such peace offerings toward business, Democratic state Sen. Alex Padilla introduced SB 292 to streamline the process to reduce intimidating environmental bureaucracy with the intended goal of building a new football stadium near Staples Center.

Coastal Voices: Jobs aren’t coming back

I have to respond to Marlowe Thompson’s letter (“President has added more debt than all others for pass 200 years,” Aug. 25), due simply that there is so much wrong information out there and several of his statements were misleading.

 What man or woman would be able to handle the absolute mess that former President George W. Bush created: two wars, the attack on the World Trade Center, No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D that was left unfunded, tax breaks for the rich, repeal of the rules to regulate banks and the environment, bank bailouts, torture (i.e. water-boarding), the lack of response to the hurricane in New Orleans and on an on.

Also keep in mind that our participation in foreign wars was not accounted for in the federal budget under Bush. These wars are costing billions of dollars and are unsustainable.

House Calls: Know your ‘numbers’ and still enjoy the good life

House Calls runs every other Thursday. Today’s column is written by Christine Walker, a certified phlebotomy technician at Sutter Coast Hospital.

I love summer. It’s all about long summer days at the river, walking in the sand barefoot at the beach, getting together with family and friends for a barbecue dinner, gazing at the stars at night. What could be better?

Last year my husband truly was “King of the Grill.” He can cook anything from large meaty hamburgers to juicy steak with dripping sauce in the flames, creating a summer dinner aroma. At the same time, I was inside preparing macaroni salads and dinner rolls while the kids played. All seemed well. This was many a night at my house, with friends stopping over talking and having a great time.

Pages of History: Park turns into tourist attraction

From the pages of the Del Norte Triplicate, September 1941.

Attaining greater popularity daily, Staley’s Skeleton Park near Fort Dick is becoming Del Norte’s greatest tourist attraction.

The area displays a graphic drama of the doom of the forests, the devastation caused by the coming of man, and the unquenchable thirst of the giant redwoods for life eternal.

There redwoods stand as grim specters, charred but living sentinels of the ages. Logs lie supine that once were giants. Maimed, twisted in death throes, gallantly fighting the battle for life, these old monarchs seemingly refuse to bow their heads in defeat.

Del Norte Gardening: Blame weather for slowness of cucumbers, tomatoes

Del Norte Gardening runs every fourth Thursday. Paul Madeira and Julie Jo Ayer Williams own Ocean Air Farms in Fort Dick.

As we waltz into September, the sun has managed to shine for a fair portion of the last month. 

With the weather, we’ve been pretty satisfied. Though it’s not the exact program we’d have imagined.

This year reminds us of last year in many ways. First of all, it was a cool, wet and long spring; second, it was, again a mild summer. Lots of fog, some overcast days, a typical summer, really.

Coastal Voices: Lead, ammo and facts

The Yurok Tribe’s Wildlife Program  started the “Hunters as Stewards” campaign with the idea that hunters, if presented with the most timely and trustworthy information, would strongly consider switching to non-lead ammunition.

It was our initial opinion that the majority of hunters — critical thinkers by nature — want to preserve natural resources and are proactive in their approach to conservation.  Given our experiences at our shooting demonstrations in Del Norte and Humboldt counties, this approach was completely on target. We couldn’t have asked for a better start in our effort to get people talking about lead.

Most participants walked away with a new perspective, and traded boxes of lead ammo for high-quality copper ammunition to use in the final test, harvesting live game. We encourage the public to ask us tough questions and hold us accountable for all information we present.

Coastal Voices: Homeowner, gardener, killer

I frequently remember my sister’s response to my saying, “Right now, I am mainly gardening.”

“Killer!” she would reply, accusingly.

She is so right!

For me, gardening consists of two main things: The Pleasure and The War. The pleasure comes from crumbling the clods of earth in my hands, watching the miracle of plants growing from seed, seeing the marvelous beauty of how plants are designed, smelling the extravagant scents of my roses, being delighted when I meet my allies such as garden snakes, earthworms and ladybugs, and having the satisfaction of harboring hummingbirds, bees and butterflies, and of course, just being outdoors.

Coastal Voices: This bill is anti-fishing

If you didn’t know better, you might think that forage fish like sardines and squid are on the brink of destruction in California.

That’s what some activists imply. However, nothing could be further from the truth.

California’s coastal pelagic “forage” fisheries are the most protected in the world, with one of the lowest harvest rates.

In addition to strict fishing quotas, the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) has implemented no-take reserves, including many near bird rookeries and haul out sites to protect forage for marine life.

House Calls: How much is too much for a child’s backpack?

House Calls runs every other Thursday. Today’s column is written by Sharryn Jones, a physical therapist at Sutter Coast Hospital.

The time has come for school to start again here in Crescent City after the Labor Day holiday. 

As some school districts consider swapping heavy textbooks for e-reader tablets, local health experts understand the impact an overloaded backpack can have on a child — aching back and shoulders, tingling arms, stooped posture and weakened muscles. But parents can help prevent these possible pains in a few simple ways.

According to experts within the Sutter Health System, parents are often surprised at how much their child’s backpack actually weigh.  As a general rule, to prevent injury, your child’s full backpack should weigh no more than 10 to 20 percent of his or her body weight.

Editor's Note: Hitting the ‘reply’ button

I don’t often respond in print to letters to the editor criticizing some aspect of our news product. The critics deserve their say, of course, and Tuesday’s edition featured missives from two of them. This time I am responding but hey, at least I waited a day.

Roger Gitlin took offense at my writing in a Saturday Editor’s Note column (“Tea Party surveys fairgoers”) that some county fairgoers probably stayed away from the Tea Party booth because they didn’t support that organization’s political philosophy. The implication was that I was singling out the Tea Party, when some fairgoers were no doubt choosing not to visit other booths as well.

Lost in that analysis is the fact that my whole column was singling out the Tea Party, because that was the organization that conducted a public opinion survey at the fair. Mary Wilson was kind enough to loan me the survey results, which I felt provided insight into the attitudes and concerns of local residents.

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