The Official Newspaper for Foster County

Opinion


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  • Paved with good intentions

    Amy Wobbema|May 20, 2024

    Our job as journalists is to keep citizens informed about what matters most and hold our government officials accountable for the actions they take. Some days we have it all figured out. Other days, not so much. This past week, we fell a bit short. An article printed on the front page of the May 13th edition of the Independent missed the mark. In fact, it was one of those articles worthy of winning “The Devil Make Me Do It” award. (Yes, that used to be a real award in the NDNA Better New...

  • Upside Down Under: Australian muralist coming to Minot

    Marvin Baker|May 20, 2024

    A year after an announcement was made to paint murals on the side of a downtown Minot grain elevator, it appears the project is going forward. Australian artist Guido Van Helten was in Minot recently to survey the premises and get a better idea of what exactly he will be doing. A specific timeline hasn’t been announced, but originally, Van Helten was going to work through last summer to paint the elevator. One thing is certain. The Minot Council on the Arts got the right guy to take on this j...

  • Guest: Is 'value' a dirty word?

    Danny Tyree|May 20, 2024

    As I sit here admiring my 88-cent container of mustard, I can’t help feeling self-conscious. I know that restaurants advertise their “value menus” and retailers offer no-frills knockoffs of their glitziest products, but I keep picturing the corporate CEOs loathing such concessions as a necessary evil to appease the (ugh!) cheapskate rabble. (“I thought all the franchise owners got the memo to partner with Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and upsell customers the Eternally Happy Meal!”)...

  • Guest: When pursuit of pretty hair harms your health

    Lora Wobbema|May 13, 2024

    Are you willing to risk your health just to have straight hair? In 2022 a study was released that links the use of specific hair straightening chemicals to an increased risk of uterine cancer. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has since evaluated the study's claims, along with others, and taken steps to ban the sale of these chemicals in the U.S. I agree that a ban should be put in place for the use of these chemicals, a point that needs emphasizing since so many people have no...

  • Upside Down Under: Teddy's time in Tampa...

    Marvin Baker|May 13, 2024

    A post on Facebook about Theodore Roosevelt revealed a piece of history that was quite shocking mostly because I’ve never seen anything about this while there are multiple articles, TV spots and museum entries in south Florida. Roosevelt and his Rough Riders spent some time in the Ybor City neighborhood of Tampa before disembarking for the Spanish-American War in Cuba in 1898 where the famous San Juan Hill battle took place. The Rough Riders were in Tampa just a short time, but while there m...

  • Guest: Mothers - teaching the art of laughter

    Tom Purcell|May 13, 2024

    My mother would have been considered eccentric had she been financially wealthy. She would do almost anything - and wear almost any silly costume - to bring joy into the lives of others, much to the embarrassment of her six children. But she is wealthy in the ways that really matter, and her greatest wealth is teaching the art of laughter. She knew the benefits of laughter long before scientific studies confirmed them. When she wasn't laughing herself, she was teaching us how to. Most nights...

  • From jail cell to CDL

    Amy Wobbema|May 6, 2024

    “My name is Derek Petteway. I have been out of MRCC custody since November 28th, 2023. While at MRCC I was able to obtain my CDL, and since have found a very fulfilling career path because of it. I started a job as a crane rigger about two months ago. This job has treated me very well and it will provide me with outstanding benefits and a great retirement plan. The end goal for me is to eventually become a certified crane operator one day. “None of this would have happened if it wasn’t for t...

  • Upside Down Under: Food deserts are increasing...

    Marvin Baker|May 6, 2024

    There was a report in North Dakota newspapers a couple of weeks ago regarding the closure of a Crosby grocery store. For months there were efforts to save it, but the closure happened and forced the closing of several other Jason’s Super Foods stores on the northern tier. Crosby is a community of more than 1,000 people and is the Divide County seat. The residents are now faced with having to travel if they want to visit a bonafide grocery store. Crosby has a Dollar General and another b...

  • Guest: Does your town need renaming?

    Danny Tyree|May 6, 2024

    The venerable comic strip “Gasoline Alley” is wrapping up a storyline in which the dastardly assistant mayor schemed to change the town’s name from Gasoline Alley to the ostensibly more modern Electric Acres (without even offering a compromise such as Hybrid Hollow). Sentimentality saved the day in the funnies, just as it usually applies the brakes to abrupt municipal name changes in the real world. (“I have no idea which jurist, general or fur trader our town was named for. Neither did my fath...

  • Celebrating success on track

    Amy Wobbema|Apr 29, 2024

    Spring sports are a crap shoot. One week, we don’t have anywhere to go. The next, we have all the places and not enough people to go. We get it all in every chance we get. On Tuesday, your local newspaper had four people at five different events. New Rockford hosted a doubleheader of high school baseball, first Carrington vs. LaMoure, followed by SNR vs. LaMoure. In the NR-S gym, the elementary club volleyball team took on the Benson County Wildcats. Carrington hosted softball, where Carrington...

  • Upside Down Under: Putting on a different spin...

    Marvin Baker|Apr 29, 2024

    Editor’s note: This article is educational and is not intended as medical advice. It simply explains the two types of vertigo and the various ways vertigo affects people. Most people don’t like to talk about medical issues, although in some cases, those issues are brought into the public domain as people suffer from conditions manifested by the disease or condition. One of them is vertigo. Simply put, vertigo is uncontrollable dizziness that can last a few minutes up to a week in some severe cas...

  • Guest: Ready for the bathroom of tomorrow?

    Danny Tyree|Apr 29, 2024

    Bathroom floor tiles that weigh you, analyze your gait and evaluate your fall risk. Bathroom mirrors that initiate telehealth conferences based on your complexion or facial tics. Toilet seats that check your vitals (temperature, heart rate, oxygenation). According to the Wall Street Journal, these marvels (and others – such as self-cleaning capacities and soothing infrared light) could be commonplace in upscale homes within the next decade. If so – and if the restraining orders expire so I can...

  • Fond farewell to Omdahl

    Amy Wobbema|Apr 22, 2024

    The news came to me in a text message on Sunday. Lloyd Omdahl, former lieutenant governor of North Dakota and writer of opinion columns published across the state each week, passed away at the age of 93. Although he has been writing his weekly column since before I was born, I did not know much about Mr. Omdahl until I began working for the Transcript in 2015. Truth be told, although I read newspapers, I didn't really engage with his writing much. If I read the opinion page, I was often fixated...

  • Letters: Property tax elimination measure

    Rick Becker|Apr 22, 2024

    The measure to eliminate property tax is being circulated, and signatures collected to place it on the November ballot. There is also a strong, concerted effort to once again scare voters to go against their own best interest. The measure is simple and does two things: it provides huge RELIEF by using excessive state revenue to replace what we are currently paying in property taxes. We get to keep that amount every year! And it creates true REFORM by stopping taxation based on valuation increases, ending confusing mill levies and no longer bein...

  • Upside Down Under: Faith in the next generation...

    Marvin Baker|Apr 22, 2024

    There seems to be a lot of talk among the baby boomer generation about the generation of young Americans today who are just making their way in the world. Unfortunately, the talk isn’t so good and it’s mostly about alleged lack of motivation, lack of social skills and mostly about not wanting to work, but rather playing video games and living with parents. I’m a baby boomer too and recently retired from the professional world. In my career, I’ve worked with all kinds of young people and I still...

  • Guest: A good month to prevent distracted driving

    Tom Purcell|Apr 22, 2024

    “It wasn’t my fault the car in front of me hit me. I glanced at my text message for only a second when our bumpers collided.” “How could the car in front of you hit you?” “The idiot stopped to let a deer cross the street — and dented my front bumper with his rear bumper. Yet the cops wrote me up for texting while driving!” “It’s because of people like you that April has become National Distracted Driving Awareness Month! Safety advocates are urging drivers like you to avoid texting or watching...

  • The case for incremental improvement

    Amy Wobbema|Apr 15, 2024

    It must be spring, because cleaning and renewal are on the brain. I’m looking at all the work that needs to be done in and around our home before we host a graduation party in six weeks. I also need to take down the snowflake decor in the New Rockford store window and replace it with something more “seasonally-appropriate.” I wish I had gotten that knack from my mother. She changes her décor every month, and the tables, archways and other areas of her home are always in season. We renewe...

  • Upside Down Under: Pet peeves...

    Marvin Baker|Apr 15, 2024

    We all have pet peeves that drive us absolutely nuts, right? It might be a wet dog shaking itself off on the couch or a delivery driver consistently delivering your packages to your neighbor. Let’s admit, we all have some. I have some too, 10 in fact, that I’ll share with you in this article. 1.) Motorists not using blinkers: For some reason, people don’t use blinkers any longer, and I’m talking in heavy traffic. The biggest issue is when I want to turn left on a highway and someone is coming...

  • Guest: Outpatient cluttering

    Jase Graves|Apr 15, 2024

    Because I’m a professional practitioner of the pedagogical arts (known in some parts as fancy book learnin’), I’m privileged to enjoy a Spring Break holiday that usually falls during the same week my semi-grown daughters are also out of school. Back in the good old days when the girls still spoke to me with actual words, we would spend our Spring Breaks together­­ – playing at the park, riding bikes, or sharing the trauma of a Disney character’s parental death scene. This year, instead of...

  • When renovation meets innovation

    Amy Wobbema|Apr 8, 2024

    “Help, I need advice! Tell me what to do with this weird corner below the stairs in my house!” “Show my husband that our brick home’s exterior would look better painted.” “I can’t stand these ‘orange’ wood cabinets that were custom built by the previous owner. Would they look better stained black or painted white?” Such are common questions a typical homeowner might ask his friends and neighbors. Every home has its quirks; some more than others. I remember watching “This Old House” and “Home Imp...

  • Upside Down Under: Drake Landing...

    Marvin Baker|Apr 8, 2024

    Have you ever heard of a place called Drake Landing? I didn’t either until I read a recent news article about it. Drake Landing is perhaps the most unique community in North America because more than 90 percent of the power to heat the 52 homes in Drake Landing is solar. What’s even more unique is that this community isn’t in south Florida, Texas or Arizona. It’s right in the middle of oil country in Alberta. Drake Landing is part of the city of Okotoks, situated 30 miles south of Calgary...

  • Guest: Are you a fan of noisy restaurants?

    Danny Tyree|Apr 8, 2024

    A recent Wall Street Journal article provided food for thought about the decibel levels in restaurants. According to the article, in 2023, audio data from the app SoundPrint found that 63 percent of restaurants are too loud for conversation. (Granted, this is a blessing in disguise if the conversation veers toward “SoundPrint? You told me your phone doesn’t have enough space for photos of my trip to the International Lint Museum, but you have room to download SoundPrint????”) My father hated...

  • All about April Fools Day

    Amy Wobbema|Apr 1, 2024

    I’m not a big fan of April Fools’ Day, or any kind of pranks for that matter. Perhaps that’s because I am more likely to be the one pranked than I am the mastermind behind the hoax. My husband, on the other hand, can pull a prank with the best of them. Our oldest was born the day after April Fools’ Day, and I happened to go into labor on the dreaded day. My husband and his dad were out of town for work the four days prior, and I was anxious to say the least. I had been staying with his dad’s f...

  • Upside Down Under: A model for business...

    Marvin Baker|Apr 1, 2024

    Several weeks ago my wife and I met a friend from New Zealand who was visiting North Dakota. We agreed to meet in Bismarck and chose the downtown restaurant Pirogue Grille. Several years ago we frequented that restaurant, but because we live on the northern tier of the state, it’s hard to get to Bismarck on a regular basis. But, when we met Kiwi Kate there, it was as if nothing had changed. The restaurant looked the same, the staff was nearly the same and the menu which was new each time you w...

  • Letters: Possible closing of armory

    Apr 1, 2024

    Dear Editor: We were disheartened to hear that the Carrington Armory may be closing due to vandalism. Many of us appreciate the use of the armory for inclement weather, and even in the summer, we have cool, windy days. Some older walkers have balance problems that often prohibit them from walking on uneven surfaces. Some of our walkers are recovering from knee/hip surgeries. The Armory provides a safe, stable solution. We do understand that the Armory is being used and abused by some as we can attest to cans, paper wrappers, spilled pop and...

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