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Generally Speaking – Columns

Generally Speaking is the Voyageur's forum for columns, cartoons, and letters to the editor. Skeeter Tales by Joel Seibel is our very own locally produced cartoon. Columns include "Wright News" by Jennie K. Hanson, "Villa Vista News" by Renee Klejeski and "Slices of Life" by Jill Pertler. Views expressed in columns, cartoons, and letters represent the views of the authors.

 

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Other Columns

A little Blarney for all

The veto of the Keystone Pipeline

I've gone Gaga

I'm hearing voices, and recognizing a few

We are the Nielsens

He took the money ... and has done something with it

Images of the last week

Governing against the will of the people

A shortage of what?!

Hiding behind the monogram

» Jennie Hanson's Wright/Cromwell News – online

Minimum Wage vs Unemployment

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics only 1.6 percent of the employed people in the United States work at the minimum wage, as we hear much about the advantage or disadvantage of raising the “Minimum Wage.” A closer look at the people working at minimum wage shows that 40 percent are teenagers or other dependents living with family members. Another 56 percent are a spouse or someone living with another wage earner. Therefore, over 96 percent of minimum wage earners do not solely depend on that income to live. The vast majority of minimum wage earners are young entry-level people working to gain experience or people earning extra income.

Of the households with income of less than $15,000 a year only 36 percent have someone that earns any reportable income at all. When one looks at the real problem, it is not the low minimum wage it is unemployment. In fact raising the minimum wage only makes the unemployment situation worse.

The latest example is happening in Oakland’s Chinatown where several restaurants and grocery stores have closed after the city’s minimum wage was raised. Other small businesses there are not sure they are going to survive, as they depend on a thin profit margin and a high volume of sales.

As usual the group ...

For the rest of this story and more, pick up this week's Voyageur Press.

news photo
Other Columns

The veto of the Keystone Pipeline

I've gone Gaga

I'm hearing voices, and recognizing a few

We are the Nielsens

He took the money ... and has done something with it

Images of the last week

Governing against the will of the people

A shortage of what?!

Hiding behind the monogram

New Year's Wishes for 2015

» Jennie Hanson's Wright/Cromwell News – online

A little Blarney for all

Now that my bride has authenticated my Irish roots, I find that I need to brush up on that heritage beyond watching Celtic Woman and Celtic Thunder during public television pledge drives. So, we went to a concert last Friday in Duluth that celebrated things Irish. What better way to continue than to get a book of Irish sayings and study the deeper meaning and wisdom of what they offer.

Actually, I already had the book (Irish Sayings, Tara, 2000). We bought it in Ireland on a trip years ago, but I haven’t given it the penetrating analysis befitting the exploration of one’s heritage.

A welcome: “We’ll spread green rushes under your feet.” I think this means please feel welcome, and ignore the pit underneath the rushes. Once the ransom is paid, you’ll be free to go.

“In heaven there is no beer … that’s why we drink ours here.” Well, I’m already confused, yet humbled due to the other ethnicities that have claimed this as a mantra. It is the state slogan of Wisconsin as well, is it not? Could it also be why their governor gets confused as to whether he’s arguing with union members or challenging terrorists? I now also have a better understanding of ...

For the rest of this story and more, pick up this week's Voyageur Press.

news photo
Other Columns

I've gone Gaga

I'm hearing voices, and recognizing a few

We are the Nielsens

He took the money ... and has done something with it

Images of the last week

Governing against the will of the people

A shortage of what?!

Hiding behind the monogram

New Year's Wishes for 2015

Christmas is a feeling

» Jennie Hanson's Wright/Cromwell News – online

The veto of the Keystone Pipeline

Soon after Congress passed a bill to proceed with the Keystone XL pipeline, and before President Obama vetoed the bill, there was a fiery environmental disaster in West Virginia. Fourteen oil tanker railroad cars derailed and exploded in what area residents said “was a thunderous fireball.” This was not an isolated accident. This serious incidence involved tank cars that were of a new design to be crash resistant.

In Quebec, on July 6 of 2013, a railroad tanker derailment killed 47 people and over 2,000 people had to be evacuated from the area. In 2014 there were 141 railroad oil tanker accidents. The average number of oil tanker accidents from 1975 to 2012 was approximately 23 per year. It is not that railroads have become less safe in transporting oil; the problem is that both the United States and Canada are producing more oil than ever before and that oil is going to be transported to refineries. One has to accept the fact that the oil industry is going to ship crude oil to refineries.

Jack Gerard, president and chief executive officer of the American Petroleum Institute (API) said, “Six years of review and five years of positive environmental assessment from the State Department are enough.” Congress, as our representatives in government, has accepted that fact. So … let’s look for ...

For the rest of this story and more, pick up this week's Voyageur Press.

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