Ah, the sweet smell of newsprint, ink

One of the happy sounds of my young life was the thud-bang of a rolled-up newspaper hitting our front aluminum door when the paper boy, like an ace pitcher, lobbed it there every weekday afternoon.

I’d rush to the door to pick up the St. Cloud Daily Times and then sprawl back in a plush chair to read it. In summers especially, the Times had the hot sweet smell of newsprint and ink – still to me a most wonderful smell.

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Free press makes state, nation stronger

by Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar

In Minnesota, we understand the importance of a free press. It’s hard to forget in our state that we Minnesotans are among the most engaged citizens in the country. Last year, we again ranked first in the nation in voter turnout. Minnesotans volunteer at the second-highest rate in the country. And we usually look to our local newspapers as the first stop for the information we need.

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‘You’re not the President. I am!’

T.S. Eliot wrote in his poem, The Hollow Men:

“This is the way the world ends

Not with a bang but a whimper.”

These days, we have to wonder if the world will end not with a whimper but a tweet – a Trumpian tweet. Here are my satirical “takes” on Trump’s temper-tantrum tweeting habits:

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Sensitive leaks aren’t fair game

Ever since the beginning of the Trump Administration, things have been going sideways on a number of issues. Chief among these is a massive amount of information leaks. From minor details to transcripts of phone calls with foreign leaders, almost nothing has been safe from the hands of investigative journalists. But is this the way things should be, especially when they involve top government secrets?

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50 favorite songs. What are yours?

A friend recently emailed me a list of 50 favorite pop songs compiled by A.J. Paul, a retired editor/writer in New Jersey. He called the songs the “soundtrack” of his life. Twelve of my favorites were on Paul’s list, and even though I like the other songs he listed, they wouldn’t make my own “top” 50.

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A look at grief eight years later

Joy Anderson Barrett, Griefshare leader

Eight years ago on Aug. 3, I came home from a friend’s home with my 5-year-old and 8-year-old wondering where my husband was. You see, he was supposed to meet our kids and me at our friend’s house. We were planning on celebrating a new job the wife was going to begin the next day. I had made a quick stop to pick up pizza and we were going to have a family-friendly celebration. The thing is my husband, Bryon, never showed up. I wasn’t worried though; we had been married 18 years, and I knew Bryon would show up. After years of him being a little bit late for events due to hunting or fishing or helping out a friend/neighbor, I had learned that “no news was good news.”

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We cannot afford to lose Sen. McCain

We cannot afford to lose Sen. John McCain. His remarkable mother is 105 years old. I hope he beats the brain cancer and lives that long, too.

Too bad he voted July 25 to proceed with the killing of ObamaCare, but he did at least scold fellow Republicans for the hideous bill they hobbled together in secrecy, and he did call for bipartisan health-care fixes. Many of McCain’s decisions I and many others have disagreed with, but I have never questioned his motives or his methods. As a Democrat, I have always respected McCain because he is not in it for himself. He is a dedicated public servant, as all politicians should be, but as we know all too well, so many are not, serving themselves or big-money interests rather than serving “We the People.”

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Balance of powers critical for democracy

On July 19, an important legal case I have been following came to its first decision. A Ramsey County judge found Gov. Mark Dayton’s attempt to veto the state legislature’s funding as violating the state constitution. Vowing to appeal, the governor is now taking his case to the Minnesota Supreme Court. While President Trump may get all of the media attention with his actions good or bad, I think this case right here in Minnesota is much more dangerous and not getting the attention it deserves.

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