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Economic stimulus payments authorized by legislation passed by Congress and signed into law by the president on Dec. 27, started direct depositing into banks accounts on December 29. 

Through history, the decisions by our presidents to issue pardons and commutations have always been topics of controversy. 

Last Wednesday, a mob incited by President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol during a joint session of Congress convened to carry out the task of certifying the results of the Nov. 3 general election. The loss of five lives and the desecration to “the people’s house,” our highest institu…

There are some high-minded legal principles written into Iowa laws and rulings by our state’s Supreme Court.

As I sit at my kitchen table writing this, I look up from my keyboard frequently to watch the legions of birds gathering at one of the four feeders my husband keeps filled just outside our sliding glass doors. Against the frosty white backdrop, the cardinals are brilliant, but the blue jays,…

My first real friend was a dog. Next to my parents, she was the only creature on this earth who liked me more than she did herself. Dogs are like that. 

Each year in the greater Maquoketa area, there are two campaigns that provide the majority of the annual funds needed to help vulnerable people in need with emergency assistance and to alleviate food insecurity in this community. The Salvation Army Red Kettle Campaign will close on Christmas…

For most of us, having faith means being patient, waiting for something good to happen. We have faith that in time our daily lives will eventually return to normal or faith that we can get into our dream college if we just study hard enough. 

I write about imposters in this space in almost every edition. Those imposters take the form of grandchildren, tech support specialists, Social Security agents, IRS agents, and people wanting to award millions in sweepstakes winnings. 

Recently, I headed to Lost Nation to winterize the old Gilroy place. I looked around as I left. The old gal needs a paint job, but that will have to wait until spring, likewise the front porch roof. 

For the past 10 years or so, I’ve written a column about this time listing ways people can give to help brighten Christmas for less fortunate Jackson County area residents.

Many of you reading this probably received a fake check delivered to you. You either recognized outright it was a fake, or when you took it to the bank, they refused to take it, or warned you not to take out the proceeds of the deposit until the check cleared (which it didn’t). 

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My dad was born in 1932, and he grew up listening to programs from the Golden Age of radio, from comedy to suspense to children’s shows. I don’t have many memories of him – from childhood to adulthood – in which a radio program of some sort wasn’t playing in the background. 

The coronavirus pandemic has laid much of the American economy on its back — but a bright spot made the disaster less crippling than it might have been. That is the Paycheck Protection Program, which funneled money to workers through small businesses. 

“This year, Iowans validated the direction of our state by expanding the majority in the Iowa House and maintaining the strong majority in the state Senate,” Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds said Thursday. “… In addition, it was a validation of our balanced response to COVID-19, one that is mindful of…

When the Iowa Legislature wrote the state’s public records law 50 years ago, lawmakers wanted to guarantee that anyone could obtain copies of state and local government records that are not designated by statute to be kept confidential.

My closest friend spent his working life in law enforcement. He handled everything from minor traffic violations to homicides, with assorted robberies, break-ins, vandalism and domestic assaults in between.

Things at the library look quite a bit different than they did six months ago. Since March we’ve gone from completely open to completely closed, to offering curbside pickup of library materials, and most recently to offering entry to the library by appointment. We’ve also had to stop our in-…

There is one week set aside each year to salute newspapers for the important role they have played in our nation, a role that goes back to the beginning of these United States.

This story is like a shiver looking for a spine to go up. Call me alarmist, over wrought, sensational, but don’t call me and say you’ve seen wild, feral hogs run across the road at our farm. By then it’s too late.

The events and issues of the past couple of weeks have been swirling around in my head like Toto, Dorothy and the debris picked up in that famous Kansas cyclone. 

Just a few weeks ago, I went back to school after several months of being at home without in-person classes. It was really different and strange. I mean, everything is different, school or not. So, I thought it might be interesting to write about the difference and similarities of going back…

Twenty years ago, when the death of 2-year-old Shelby Duis outraged Iowans, I was confident the Spirit Lake tragedy would soon bring change to our state.

Taking a head count of the nation’s residents has to be a daunting task to attempt any time. Trying to do it in the midst of a worldwide pandemic, economic upheaval, and social unrest only adds to the challenge.

The coronavirus has changed the way we work, in many cases forever. The pandemic has also brought into sharp focus the powerless state of workers here in Iowa and the employer-driven policies that intentionally keep it that way.

Quad-Cities area news coverage of the recent passing of Bob Reade recounted his immensely successful football coaching career at Geneseo, Illinois, High School and Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed dangerous weaknesses in America’s aging public data system. In one of the greatest jobs crises in the past 100 years, the labor force measures of employment and unemployment are too slow, not local and too often unreliable and irrelevant.

Public health experts have given us a long list of ways we can help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  Unfortunately for Iowa’s universities, students, faculty and college towns, finger-pointing has yet to be proven effective at warding off infections.

When Jodi Prosise spoke at the Central DeWitt School Board meeting last week, she summed up the frustration felt by many who follow the COVID-19 statistics released by the state.

An ear of sweet corn is everything good about summer here in Iowa. Sure, you can have an ear of sweetcorn out of season from a supermarket in the dead of winter thanks to long-distance food. But it will travel perhaps 1,500 miles to get to your plate.

Not that you asked, but the list of things I dislike goes well beyond liver and onions, “Rocky Mountain Oysters,” drivers who tailgate, and people who chew with their mouths open.

Vice President Mike Pence claimed in Iowa last week that President Trump had fulfilled his promises to Iowa farmers and ethanol producers. It’s not true and he knew that, because Iowa farmers told him so.

An older rural Welton woman earned the rare distinction of meeting face-to-face the scammers who cheated her out of $15,000. The scammers employed the well-worn but very effective grandparent scam against the Welton woman, who we will call Judy. 

Even before coronavirus hit American colleges and universities, even before their budgets imploded because of the pandemic, questions were being asked nationally about how these institutions spend their money.

Regular readers of this column know I counseled for years for everyone to pay close attention to your credit card and bank statements. We need to review those line by line. And what we are looking for are card charges we did not make, or withdrawals from accounts we did not authorize. 

  • Updated

My dad was born in 1932, and he grew up listening to programs from the Golden Age of radio, from comedy to suspense to children’s shows. I don’t have many memories of him – from childhood to adulthood – in which a radio program of some sort wasn’t playing in the background. 

The coronavirus pandemic has laid much of the American economy on its back — but a bright spot made the disaster less crippling than it might have been. That is the Paycheck Protection Program, which funneled money to workers through small businesses. 

“This year, Iowans validated the direction of our state by expanding the majority in the Iowa House and maintaining the strong majority in the state Senate,” Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds said Thursday. “… In addition, it was a validation of our balanced response to COVID-19, one that is mindful of…

When the Iowa Legislature wrote the state’s public records law 50 years ago, lawmakers wanted to guarantee that anyone could obtain copies of state and local government records that are not designated by statute to be kept confidential.

My closest friend spent his working life in law enforcement. He handled everything from minor traffic violations to homicides, with assorted robberies, break-ins, vandalism and domestic assaults in between.

Things at the library look quite a bit different than they did six months ago. Since March we’ve gone from completely open to completely closed, to offering curbside pickup of library materials, and most recently to offering entry to the library by appointment. We’ve also had to stop our in-…

There is one week set aside each year to salute newspapers for the important role they have played in our nation, a role that goes back to the beginning of these United States.

This story is like a shiver looking for a spine to go up. Call me alarmist, over wrought, sensational, but don’t call me and say you’ve seen wild, feral hogs run across the road at our farm. By then it’s too late.

The events and issues of the past couple of weeks have been swirling around in my head like Toto, Dorothy and the debris picked up in that famous Kansas cyclone. 

Just a few weeks ago, I went back to school after several months of being at home without in-person classes. It was really different and strange. I mean, everything is different, school or not. So, I thought it might be interesting to write about the difference and similarities of going back…

Twenty years ago, when the death of 2-year-old Shelby Duis outraged Iowans, I was confident the Spirit Lake tragedy would soon bring change to our state.

Taking a head count of the nation’s residents has to be a daunting task to attempt any time. Trying to do it in the midst of a worldwide pandemic, economic upheaval, and social unrest only adds to the challenge.

The coronavirus has changed the way we work, in many cases forever. The pandemic has also brought into sharp focus the powerless state of workers here in Iowa and the employer-driven policies that intentionally keep it that way.

Quad-Cities area news coverage of the recent passing of Bob Reade recounted his immensely successful football coaching career at Geneseo, Illinois, High School and Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois.

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed dangerous weaknesses in America’s aging public data system. In one of the greatest jobs crises in the past 100 years, the labor force measures of employment and unemployment are too slow, not local and too often unreliable and irrelevant.

Public health experts have given us a long list of ways we can help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  Unfortunately for Iowa’s universities, students, faculty and college towns, finger-pointing has yet to be proven effective at warding off infections.

When Jodi Prosise spoke at the Central DeWitt School Board meeting last week, she summed up the frustration felt by many who follow the COVID-19 statistics released by the state.

An ear of sweet corn is everything good about summer here in Iowa. Sure, you can have an ear of sweetcorn out of season from a supermarket in the dead of winter thanks to long-distance food. But it will travel perhaps 1,500 miles to get to your plate.

Not that you asked, but the list of things I dislike goes well beyond liver and onions, “Rocky Mountain Oysters,” drivers who tailgate, and people who chew with their mouths open.

Vice President Mike Pence claimed in Iowa last week that President Trump had fulfilled his promises to Iowa farmers and ethanol producers. It’s not true and he knew that, because Iowa farmers told him so.

An older rural Welton woman earned the rare distinction of meeting face-to-face the scammers who cheated her out of $15,000. The scammers employed the well-worn but very effective grandparent scam against the Welton woman, who we will call Judy. 

Even before coronavirus hit American colleges and universities, even before their budgets imploded because of the pandemic, questions were being asked nationally about how these institutions spend their money.

Regular readers of this column know I counseled for years for everyone to pay close attention to your credit card and bank statements. We need to review those line by line. And what we are looking for are card charges we did not make, or withdrawals from accounts we did not authorize. 

  • Updated

Without question, I’m old school. My analog watch doesn’t count my steps, keep track of my sleep cycles or warn me I’d better not eat that third chocolate chip cookie. I haven’t yet graduated to a vehicle with a center “vehicle information” screen and I keep a supply of paper maps in the glo…