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A precious 4-word promise...

By Dean Close · 5:36am April 27th, 2016
“Out of the mouths of babes.” “And a little child shall lead them.” It amazes and inspires us, when in the toughest of times, some of the best ideas for handling these painful days come from children. The death this month of 11-year-old J.R. Clapp of rural Vinton is another one of those tough times that have come way too often to this area in the past couple of years.

Thank You and Kudos

By Frank Van Steenhuyse · 3:18pm April 23rd, 2016
THANK YOU to the Vinton police department and the Vinton firemen who helped block intersections and get us down the highway, through town and over the river bridge Friday. You made the funeral procession for J R Clapp safer by your assistance. Kudos to the Cub Scouts and the Boy Scouts and their leaders who provided such a meaningful and memorable tribute to J R and his family at the cemetery.

'New York Values:' An Iowan's view of Big Apple demographics

By Dean Close · 9:28am April 19th, 2016
Imagine how crazy and crowded Benton County would be if every person in Iowa moved here. Now add every person in Nebraska. And North Dakota. And South Dakota. And most of Alaska. Pretty scary, right? Now, imagine that Benton County were actually made up of two islands, a peninsula and the tiny corner of an island, and that all of that land is actually less than half the size of our present county map.

If Smokey the Bear had elves, they'd camp in our backyard

By Valerie Close · 11:09pm March 29th, 2016
Dear Smokey the Bear, I raised them right. I told them NOT to play with matches. We explained clearly WHY the metal hanger should NOT go in the microwave. We taught them never and I mean NEVER to mix gasoline with a spark. “So WHY are the fire departments from two neighboring departments at my house?” “AGAIN?” “For the second time?” you ask.

To the Editor: Another view on 'Mo money'

By John Stiegelmeyer · 12:44pm February 23rd, 2016
To the Editor: Here is another view to Kurt Karr’s opinion: Bill Keller asserts: "they (our government) create nothing . . . they sell nothing . . . they simply take what they want.” I happen to agree with this assertion. I takes people who are wealth creators, wage earners, pensioners, business owners, others to pay for government excesses.

Was Grassley's meeting about 'Mo money' or things more substantial?

By Kurt Karr · 9:36pm February 19th, 2016
I would have been amused by Bill Keller's outlook, expressed in his recent letter to the editor, if it weren't for the many millions who are under the sway of similar thinking. Let's see if we can do a little work balancing the scales. First let me say something about discourse. My friend Nathan and I attended the same meeting with Senator Grassley that Bill did.

To the Editor: 'We want mo' money!' -- thoughts on a town hall discussion

By Bill Keller · 10:32am February 18th, 2016
Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa has a personal policy of visiting all 99 counties within the state at least once a year. Last night – February 16, 2016 – was our turn for the year. I found the evening disheartening. The Town Hall’s meeting room was packed with standing room only.

It's Valentine's Day, let's go away, he says...

By Valerie Close · 10:48pm February 16th, 2016
It all starts with a dream. “Let's go away on a trip! What could possibly go wrong?” he says. “Just everything!” she says. “You need to relax and just enjoy life!” he says. “I can do that when I'm dead.” she says. For the last almost 5 years, we have taken I think it's less than a week off from “working.

Letter to the Editor: What is Extremism?

By Vinton Today · 10:49am February 16th, 2016
Being a fiscal liberal is mainstream, but being a fiscal conservative is extreme? Redistribution of wealth is mainstream, but earning wealth is extreme? Being a Secular humanist is mainstream, but being an evangelical is extreme? Blaming America first is mainstream, but putting America first is extreme? Leading from behind is mainstream, but leading from the front is extreme? Being a socialist liberal is mainstream , but being a conservative is extreme.

It's appropriate, with all the love they have for each other, that both the Democrats and Republicans running for President met for debates during the week or weekend of Valentine's Day. It's far more appropriate that these debates took place as the world celebrated the weekend of romance named for a a guy who died single and was beheaded by a crazy government leader.

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