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Opinion & Columns

Yang: Smaller Bag Is Smaller Than Bigger Bag

on March 18, 2013 - 8:55am
Smaller Bag Is Smaller Than Bigger Bag
Column by ELENA YANG

Allow me to have some fun with the following announcement … otherwise, I’d have to cry. 

“Date Published: February 22, 2013

Publisher: URS CH2M Oak Ridge

When double bagging radioactive and/or asbestos wastes, consider using a smaller bag as the inner container and larger bag as the outer container to make an easy fit for the double bagging operations while minimizing the risk of contamination spreading.” 


Of course, my first reaction was the usual, “No s*#%, Sherlock!” I realize that handling radioactive materials


Izraelevitz: Passover, Glazed Donuts and Graduate School

on March 18, 2013 - 7:34am
Passover, Glazed Donuts and Graduate School

Passover, glazed donuts and graduate school do not mix well. This is a fact that I encountered, for five consecutive years, when I was a graduate student working on my doctoral degree.

Full appreciation of this physical law requires some background, so please bear with me for a paragraph or two.

Passover, or Pesach in Hebrew, is the Jewish week-long holiday celebrating the Biblical Exodus of the Jews from Egypt.

There is a ceremonial dinner, called the Passover Seder, that begins the week of Passover and introduces

Thoughts From the Big Chair: TV’s Late Night Talk Shows and Johnny Carson – A Quantitative Analysis

on March 18, 2013 - 7:19am
Thoughts From the Big Chair
Comments on Television and Associated Media From a Lifelong Addict.

TV’s Late Night Talk Shows and Johnny Carson – A Quantitative Analysis

Part I – Grading the Shows

As with the TV drama that I talked about in my last column, we are also in a special time when it comes to late night TV talk shows – we, again, now have an embarrassment of riches and many options for our watching pleasure.

As in my previous columns, you’ll get my take on it through commentary, but I’ll give you an added bonus in Part II.

Column: The Real Fiscal Problem

on March 17, 2013 - 10:17am

The Real Fiscal Problem
Los Alamos

The problem with the federal budget is not too much spending. It is too little tax income.

Now I hate taxes as much as anyone. Also, being born in Texas, I am more skeptical of government rationales than most people.

And having worked many years for five federal agencies, I agree there is some wasteful spending, un-needed spending and even unnecessary agencies.

But facts are facts.

Our annual federal budget over the last five years has ranged from 3.5 to 3.8 trillion dollars in 2012. Not billions—trillions!


How The Hen House Turns: DeeDee and Scooter

on March 16, 2013 - 9:17am
How The Hen House Turns: DeeDee and Scooter
By Carolyn A. (Cary) Neeper, Ph. D.

Sometime in the mid 1980's, our daughters went off to college and the dog (Poncho) died--the classic scenario.

Our nest was empty for a while. The daughters' pets had also met their assorted fates. Work at the lab and the excavation of dinosaur Seismosaurus filled the gap.

Apparently, still feeling that gap, I adopted a turtle or two. Husband Don gave me a proper aquarium.

In the summer of 2000 I rescued Freddy the water dragon from Pete's Pets, our local pet store prior to Pet Pangaea. Other dragons had beat him up.


Hannemann's Music Corner: The Hook

on March 15, 2013 - 9:19am
Hannemann's Music Corner: The Hook
A chord is any three or more different letter notes, either in a stack or in melodic sequence. This definition reflects modern usages and spellings.
Certainly Bach would not have been quite so liberal in his definition. In the Common Practice period – appx. 1700-1900, Bach to Wagner, a chord would have been specifically a triad with, or without, the addition of the 7th (and, later, the 9th and the 11th.)
Other than the 7th, any note which was not part of a triad would have been considered a non-chord tone.

Kendall: Martinez vs. Garcia Richard – Gotcha Politics or SOP?

on March 14, 2013 - 8:56am
Los Alamos

Did State House Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard break her promise to voters? She vowed to help repeal the Richardson era driver’s license law that allows undocumented immigrants to obtain New Mexico driver’s licenses.  

Gov. Susana Martinez and anonymous robo-callers would like you to believe that Garcia Richard broke her promise.

Martinez went live on Los Alamos radio station KRSN AM 1490 March 7 to make that claim directly to local voters. But it is not that simple.

House Bill 606, sponsored by Rep.