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Columns

  • What’s that saying about burning bridges?

    I want to send my compliments to Billy Stewart of Oak Island, the man I said made an ass of himself at a county commissioners meeting back in December while speaking in opposition to seismic testing and drilling for oil off the North Carolina coast.

    That man really embraced the moniker, both in a letter to the editor and at the latest county meeting.

    Good for you for having thick skin and coming up with a good spin move after I took a gentle but direct shot at you. Not that I was wrong.

    But way to go taking it like a grown-up.

  • Wanted: differences of opinion and civil discourse

    We recently published a letter to the editor lamenting how few letters we publish share conservative views.

    Contrary to what some readers may believe, it bothers me, too — but I can’t force anyone to write letters to the editor, let alone ones that espouse a particular ideology.

    The time has come for me to reiterate points I made in my column published Aug. 30, 2016:

  • Park the Cadillac, take the Malibu

    At their Jan. 7 meeting, county commissioners considered, for about 10 minutes, a proposal by commissioner Randy Thompson to video stream and record their meetings.

    The discussion did not go Thompson's way as the idea, just to consider taking their show live, was shot down 4-1.

    All other commissioners — Mike Forte, Frank Williams, Pat Sykes and Marty Cooke — couldn’t see where there was a need as there was neither a great deal of public interest nor a good reason to spend the money.

  • You decide: how can we address our transportation issues in North Carolina?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    My wife retired a dozen years ago after working three decades as an elementary school teacher. Her daily routine now involves a trip to the nearest wellness facility for exercise as well as conversation — hopefully not at the same time. One thing she chronically complains about is increased traffic in Raleigh compared to her working days. She says Raleigh has too many people and too few roads.

  • No one should have to die for a traffic stop

    Less than a month before North Carolina State Trooper S.A. Collins fatally shot Brandon Webster near Shallotte, a Palatine, Ill., police officer fatally shot a man who struck him and a bystander with his vehicle.

    In the latter shooting, Leslie Vaughan is believed to have stabbed his mother to death and deliberately tried to hit police who arrived to investigate the crime scene.

  • Looking back, and ahead, at our work to protect North Carolinians

    By Josh Stein

    Guest Columnist

    As we begin 2019, I want to highlight some of the work the North Carolina Department of Justice has done in the past year to prevent crime, support law enforcement, safeguard consumers and defend North Carolina and its people.

  • You decide: exploring whether opportunity zones can boost local economies

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    I make about 80 presentations across the state each year on a variety of economic topics. It’s one of the most enjoyable parts of my job at N.C. State University, by allowing me to become acquainted with many people and groups in almost every region of our beautiful state.

  • Commissioners, curtailing public comments is Not Good

    At the last Brunswick County commissioners’ meeting Dec. 17, several anti-seismic testing/coastal oil drilling residents once again attended en masse with more than a few speaking during most, if not all, of the allotted time for public comments.

    This included a pastor who chose to make everyone else speaking on the issue look bad by association when he acted like an ass at the podium, went over the three-minute limit for individual speakers and basically challenged the board, staff, and sheriff’s officers to have him removed.

  • You decide: Will we see the economy retreat in 2019?

    By Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    It’s that time of year when economists are looked to as fortune-tellers. The fortune, in this case, is our collective well being tied to growth in the overall economy.

  • District 17 House update

    By Rep. Frank Iler

    Guest Columnist