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Opinion

  • Leaders at the University of Louisville are reacting to comments made by Gov. Matt Bevin recently, in which he called for the university presidents and governing boards to focus their resources on programs delivering graduates to high-demand jobs “that matter” and consider eliminating programs that fail to do so.

  • It takes great discipline and sometimes even a cold heart to clean out an attic, closet, basement or garage. Over the years it’s easy to accumulate many things once of some value, that now only take up space. For many, it’s hard to let go of some of these belongings. We sometimes deceive ourselves of their importance or future worth, but if we’re serious about restoring order, we have to chunk many things that are non-essential.

  • Legislators frequently grumble about Kentuckians’ lack of interest in, attention to and knowledge of complicated issues like the public-pension system.

    Some observation about how “people’s eyes glaze over when I start talking pensions” usually accompanies such grievances.

  • The National Football League began play this week and all eyes were on the flag. Not the  yellow ones that signal a penalty has been committed, but the U.S. flag that all eyes are on during the singing of the National Anthem before each game.

    That pre-game moment that has been a tradition at sporting events since WWII, has been the focus of controversy the past two seasons because a few players have chosen that moment to express political viewpoints.

  • I wrote to “Majority” leader Mitch McConnell to try to find out his thoughts on the Obama are situation and how he was going to handle it now. I had already heard that once the Republicans had the House they would do something. OOPS! Next it was as soon as they had the Senate. It was going out “roots and all.” OOPS!

  • Monday marked the 16th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on 9-11 that took over 3,000 American lives, ushered us into a war that has no foreseeable end, and changed life as we know it in so many ways.

    It feels awkward to call it an anniversary. It’s more of a moment etched in time that we wish had never happened, but one we dare never to forget. But yet each passing year takes us a year further away from the horrors of that Tuesday morning.

  • With the news about the Commonwealth’s pension systems this week, I’m reminded of the old adage that a lie makes 50 tweets at the departure gate before the truth has a chance to turn off Airplane mode. Put simply, there’s a lot of fear and trepidation about the state’s various pension systems, and understandably so—these pensions in many cases represent the livelihood of individuals and their families. However, there are also a lot of misrepresentations so hopefully this letter will help assuage some of the fears by providing some essential facts.

  • The pension crisis that’s been ignored and avoided for years is finally being addressed by leaders in Frankfort. The realities are harsh, the numbers don’t add up, and the solutions being suggested so far might require sacrifice, pain and more than a little compromise.

    Problem-solving is a task best performed when we attack the issue, and not each other. But given that this issue directly impacts our bank accounts, people are drawing battle lines, digging in and it’s about to get ugly.

  • Cody Milburn wasn’t looking for fame or pats on the back when he initiated a drive to collect water, food, and other items to help the people of southeast Texas recover from historic flooding in the wake of Hurricane Harvey last week.

    His intentions weren’t self-serving, but were about serving those in need.

    But perhaps they will also serve as reminders that when tragedy strikes, our best possible response should be empathy, compassion and yes - action.

  • A relatively small group of hate-filled people protesting and fighting in Charlottesville, Va., earlier this month showed what sharp division can do to a nation.

    Meanwhile, a much larger group of Americans in Texas, of various political backgrounds, skin tones and social status, are banding together this very moment to help each other out in the wake of devastating flooding in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.

  • Speaking with a group in Louisville, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin discussed the single most important action we can take to put our economy back on the right track: comprehensive tax reform.  I welcomed Secretary Mnuchin to our state to hear the questions and concerns that Kentuckians have about the process and to talk about what we can do to help middle class families get ahead.

  • The presentation of the final phase of an audit of Kentucky’s public pension plans at Monday’s meeting of the Public Pension Oversight Board confirms what the Bluegrass Institute has said all along: changes in the way benefits are awarded must occur immediately.

  • Summer is winding down and kids are heading back to school, but the members of the Kentucky General Assembly are still working on your behalf in Frankfort attending Interim Joint Committees. These committees bring together members of the Kentucky House and Senate to collaborate on policy ideas and discuss bills for future sessions. The Interim is also a time for us, the members of the General Assembly, to hear from different offices and branches of government to keep them accountable to you, the taxpayer.

  • President Trump made big news Monday when he was photographed staring up at the solar eclipse without the recommended safety glasses. He made much more important news later that day in a speech revealing the United States’ new policy for the 16-year-old war in Afganistan. Of course, if you are like millions of Americans who get your news off Yahoo or late night comedy shows, Trump’s policy speech wasn’t as important as his cheating blindness.

  • America looked up on Monday. Wearing silly glasses and sporting goofy grins, Americans stepped outside from coast to coast and glanced heavenward to catch a glimpse of a celestial marvel.

    After several days, weeks and even months of looking sideways at each other because of political divisions, Americans stopped the bickering for at least a couple of hours, and then looked in the same direction.

  • The Kentucky State Fair is one of the highlights of the agricultural year in Kentucky. As a farm kid from Scott County, I have many fond memories of past state fairs. It’s a chance to rub elbows with our neighbors, reunite with friends from across the Commonwealth, and show off the best that Kentucky agriculture has to offer. The 113th edition of this great tradition is Aug. 17-27, and, as always, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) is pleased to be a part of it.

  • The Battle of Charlottesville is over, with one person dead and a nation embarrassed.

    Yes, it was a battle, carried out by two hateful sides who came armed with sticks, bottles, rocks and wearing uniforms that included helmets and shields. Neither side was intending to engage in any civil debate. This was designed to be a battle and that only one person was killed is evidence that the cowards on both sides apparently like to dress up like soldiers, but have the actual warrior skills of toddlers - slapping, stomping and then quickly retreating.

  • A bunch of white supremacists and neo-Nazi’s hold a rally in a public park.  A bunch of anti-whites including Black Lives Matter racists show up to hassle them and the fight was on.  A nutcase terrorist kills and injures people by running them down with his car.  And, who gets the blame for this?  Donald Trump.  That’s insanity.

    People in the media, you ignored the BLM people.  You look like you are afraid you will be called racists if you tell the truth.