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(BPT) Veterans Day, Nov. 11, is a time to honor veterans — and this year, to mark important milestones for the holiday and for service to these American heroes.
A century ago, on Nov. 11, 1919, the first anniversary of the armistice ending World War I, President Woodrow Wilson addressed the nation asking Americans to reflect on World War I and to “be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country's service, and with gratitude for the victory.” Seven years later, an Act of Congress made “Armistice Day” an official U.S. holiday dedicated to peace. In 1945, World War II veteran Raymond Weeks began a personal campaign to expand the meaning of Armistice Day to celebrate all veterans, not just those who died in World War I. Weeks led the first national celebration of veterans in 1947 and just eight years later, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a new law establishing Veterans Day.
As we pause this Veterans Day to remember those who protected our nation’s freedom, and those still serving today, the American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) also celebrates its 100th anniversary.
By Representative Rudy Martinez
Every year on Veterans Day we take the time to commemorate those who honorably served our country. Parades, meals, and prayers remember and bless those who served, those we lost, and those still serving. For me, it’s a somber day filled with tradition, and as a Vietnam veteran who served 4 years in the Air Force, this day is also a reminder that government can and should always strive to do better by our veterans and their families.
The American flag and the Pledge of Allegiance is the foundation of who we are as American citizens and the sacrifice our veterans have made for our great country. I still recall as a young soldier at Fort Knox how our commanding officer explained the importance of respecting and honoring our flag and the men and women who fought for our freedom.
It was 36 years ago today, that until 11 Sep 2001, the most horrific terrorist attack was committed against the US was the Beirut Barracks bombing. It seems that people have decided it is a footnote in History, but to those of us who have served, and especially US Marines and Corpsman it will never be forgotten. 220 Marines, 18 Sailors, and three soldiers were killed in their barracks and a further 128 were wounded when an Iranian backed group known as Islamic Jihad (later known as Hezbollah) detonated a truck bomb at this barracks. Those troops were there as peacekeepers supporting a UN mission following the 1982 Israel/PLO War, in order to provide safety to those in Beirut who had been stricken by that War.
by Rep. Greg Nibert (R-Chaves and Lincoln Counties)
Winning the lottery is not a guarantee of happiness or success. We’ve all heard stories of lottery winners declaring bankruptcy just a few years after receiving multi-million-dollar payouts. Most of these tales of good fortunes gone bad share a common thread: uncontrolled spending.
New Mexico has won the oil and gas lottery. Due to the oil and natural gas boom in the Permian Basin, the state budget will likely experience a third straight year of having a billion-plus dollars in surplus revenues. From Fiscal Years 2019 – 2021, the oil and gas boom has generated or is projected to generate $3.2 billion in surplus for the state.
Owls, more owls and federal land grabbers
In response to a 2013 lawsuit by WildEarth Guardians on behalf of the Mexican spotted owl, a federal judge in Arizona has ordered a halt to timber operations on all New Mexico forests and one forest in Arizona (about 12 million acres). WildEarth Guardians Executive Director John Horning said, “With this decision, the agencies will finally be held accountable for ensuring that all forest management practices help, not hinder, owl recovery.” The attorney for the organization on this case explained that “certain timber projects will be paused in light of the judge’s decision.”
Since this has the potential to affect many things, including forest-thinning projects designed to limit wildfires, let’s take a closer look at what the judge actually ruled.
By Senator Pete Campos
As the combination of record state revenues, a new administration and momentum from the 2019 legislative session continues, I believe that New Mexico is on the doorstep of prosperity undreamt of only a short time ago. As we better understand the magnitude of oil reserves in the Permian Basin and work with private industry and our research institutions to expand the limits of those reserves, we can propel ourselves into this bright future by strategically investing in three critical areas: education, energy and behavioral health care.
By Paul J. Gessing
Gov. Lujan Grisham has put forth a plan (set for debate and possible approval in the 2020 Legislature) for “free” college for New Mexico residents. For many families this may seem like an unadulterated good thing. And, as the parent of three who is pondering (and already saving for) the college educations of his three children, I totally understand that reaction.
But, from the viewpoint of an economist or even someone who is simply concerned about New Mexico’s future, there are several serious problems with this proposal.
Currently, the Governor and Legislature are salivating at the prospect of a $900+ million surplus in 2020. That number may be even higher due to the recent uptick in oil prices. The plan is for “free” college to cost “just” $25-$35 million annually. Unfortunately, we have nothing from the Lujan Grisham Administration to justify that cost. Given the tendency of government officials to underestimate the cost of new programs (the Rail Runner and Spaceport come to mind) it would seem that the real cost even at the beginning will be much higher.
Check out a new column that will talk about the town of Silver City and its news and services.
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