Local charities use gifts efficiently

One day remains to make a charitable gift that benefits others, make you feel good for your actions, and allows you to take a tax deduction for 2012. A new tax year starts Tuesday. When you make a gift, give with confidence to Curry and Roosevelt charities that have been designated by the Internal Revenue […]

TRICARE co-pay hikes coming

House-Senate conferees have agreed to the more modest House-passed plan for raising drug co-payments on military family members and retirees who fill prescriptions at TRICARE retail outlets or through mail order. The fee increases are scheduled to take effect Feb. 1, TRICARE officials said as the fiscal 2013 defense authorization bill, with many other provisions […]

Past Christmas looks better in hindsight

There's nothing like a Christmas Day NBA broadcast to make me feel a little reminiscent, even as I cringe at the "back in time" ads: I really hope if Blake Griffin finds a time machine, he doesn't waste the opportunity by going back to pitch a car that doesn't exist yet to a Blake Griffin […]

Pastor offers take on recent tragedy

As a teen in the mid-1950s I began to develop the vague notion there may be more to life than hotrods and Friday nights at the drive-in. The revelation was, as we said back then, a real drag, daddy-o. So what to do with one's life? Since high school essay writing was always fun, and […]

Self defense prevents massacres

Mass murders. Who commits them? Where do they happen? How can they be prevented? How can they be stopped when prevention fails? These seem to be the only reasonable questions to ask in the wake of Sandy Hook. Who commits them? People who have mental problems, which have often been treated with medication. That includes […]

Reactions to shooting scattered

This is more rambling than most of my ramblings, so please forgive me. But Friday's shootings in Newtown have left me unable to keep a straight thought. I can't imagine how it is for parents, and I'm glad I only have to imagine at this point. I've heard a lot of reactions to the shootings, […]

Their view: Book blames government for financial crisis

Conservative columnist Walter Williams writes a weekly column for the Clovis News Journal. Here's a recent sampling of his work: Suppose you saw a building on fire. Would you seek counsel from the arsonist who set it ablaze for advice on how to put it out? But that's precisely what we've done: Turned to the […]

Proposal would help offset hikes

Late-hour speeches by Republican Sens. Tom Coburn (Okla.) and John McCain (Ariz.) on runaway military health costs led the Senate Tuesday to shelve a defense bill amendment that would have spared family members and retirees more burdensome co-pays on drug prescriptions filled off base. The timing of their opposition, in the last hours of consideration […]

No holiday break from worries

It is just a couple of weeks before Christmas and we are all grateful for the season. For this brief time we can shed our concerns, bask in the holiday spirit. It is the one time of year we can relax and forget our woes. As 2012 nears the end of her flight, much like […]

Regulations, taxes block progress

Fraser Institute released its Economic Freedom of North America 2012 report, and New Mexico came in 50th among the American states. That's bad news, but it's also an incredible and exciting opportunity, because it would be so simple to flip that ranking upside down. Economic freedom is natural; it requires a lot of effort to […]

Same-sex spouses still lack benefits

With repeal last year of the Don't Ask, Don't Tell law, many military people, including senior leaders, assumed that married gay and lesbian couples had gained not only job security but also equality in allowances, benefits and access to family support programs. That assumption is wrong. Since the law took effect 14 months ago, the […]

Idle time for the shredder

I took a few days off last week, and to quote "Office Space" protagonist Peter Gibbons, "I did absolutely nothing, and it was everything I thought it could be." OK, so it was a little bit more, as I discovered that giving me idle time is a terrible idea. With no major renovation project to […]

Tax burden affects location choices

In a recently released report by the Rio Grande Foundation, the 10 most populated cities of New Mexico were ranked according to their relative tax burdens. The study focused primarily on the property tax and gross receipts tax rates for Albuquerque, Alamogordo, Carlsbad, Clovis, Farmington, Hobbs, Las Cruces, Rio Rancho, Roswell and Santa Fe. The […]

Pharmacy fees likely will be hiked

The House and Senate will decide in the next few weeks how military pharmacy fees will be raised in 2013, a step that arguably will be the most significant taken to date to slow growth in military health care budgets. Out-of-pocket costs for military families and retirees who have prescriptions filled in the TRICARE network […]

Time for Kevin’s Holiday Hints

The week has come upon me, and with no election, new TV shows or new sports seasons to be overly concerned about, I've come to a basic realization that I have nothing to write about. I know my loyal tens of readers are saying, "And when has that ever stopped you before?" Point taken. And […]

Their view: Time to put campaigns in past

New Mexico State Sen. Pete Campos, D-Las Vegas, says it's time to end political bickering. Here's a snippet from a recent column he submitted to newspapers around the state: The 2012 election was one of the most divisive, partisan and personal New Mexico has faced. It will be hard and it will take time to […]

Election losers full of sour grapes

Taking a cue from fellow columnist and Texas Rangers fan Kevin Wilson, today I'm scattershooting about Facebook. For peace and safety, friends Avis Jones, Ron Barker, Robert Patrick and I declared a unilateral, pre-election ceasefire on political posts. We did reserve the right to comment on others' posts. One poster cited a study that the […]

General scandal wilder than fiction

Dear Book Publisher: Lucky day for you! I am giving you first crack at a work in progress, a story of total fiction involving national security, major military campaigns, the Central Intelligence Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. OK, I know you book publishing guys. You are going to want a sex angle. Tough […]

Libertarian values bring peace

Being libertarian isn't all fun and games. We are not necessarily the "party crowd" we are sometimes made out to be. While some libertarians are undoubtedly that way, as are many non-libertarians, it certainly isn't a given. Libertarianism is not about taking liberties, but about respecting the liberty of others to do as they wish […]

Military pay cap budget option

The Congressional Budget Office has released a report on military compensation that puts a red laser dot on nearterm pay raises, beneficiary healthcare fees and retirement of future forces as potential cost-saving targets Congress might want to consider in any debt-reduction deal. Thanks in part to what CBO says were pay raises that exceeded private […]