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Of People, Places & Things: The Year of the Sheep


Fri, Jan 3rd, 2003
Posted in Columnists

2003 is the year of the sheep in the Chinese zodiac. People born under the sign of the sheep are said to be wise, gentle and compassionate, characteristics that many of our world leaders may need to find more of in the coming year.

North Korea, Iraq, the Middle East, and the war on terrorism all loom as flash points on the world scene. Throw in conflict in South Asia, the perennial problems in South America and there are few places on the planet that dont seem to be in trouble.

A recent report issued by the conservative National Defense Council Foundation, found that 53 countries struggled with conflict in 2002. Thats approximately 1/4 of the worlds countries.

North Korea, a rogue nation who recently expelled U.N. inspectors monitoring its nuclear capacity, has given every indication that it is ratcheting up its nuclear bomb generating potential. This is a country that cant feed its own people and doesnt mind living in total isolation from the rest of the world.

Iraq, the poster girl for developing nations amassing weapons of mass destruction, waits quietly to see if they will be invaded by the U.S. and its allies. Saddam has few options at this stage of the game.

Meanwhile, its neighbor, and long time enemy, Iran is supposedly on the fast track for developing a nuclear capacity of its own.

Two nuclear countries, India and Pakistan are forever at each others throats, even when they are feeling friendly. Pakistan, a special friend of the US because of its access to Afghanistan, has supposedly aided North Korea with nuclear technology.

If that isnt enough unease for you, the daily slaughter in the Middle East continues unabated. Add names like Chechnya, Nepal, and the Philippines to the list where insurgencies are a part of daily life. In Africa, people in Ethiopia and Somalia face famine and those in Zimbabwe food shortages.

Compounding the problem is a sluggish world-wide economy. Our federal and state governments face huge deficits, and there is little to be optimistic about.

The business community can live with good news or bad news, but uncertainty drives them into inertia and inaction. This translates into increased unemployment which results in poor consumer confidence, which typically drives economies.

The threat of war, so .....
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At Home in the Woods: Project Wild

Fri, Jan 3rd, 2003
Posted in Columnists

When I arrived at the Depot building in Lanesboro one day last October, Don Ward, Lanesboro historian, was already talking history with Carrol Henderson, Supervisor MN DNR Nongame Wildlife Program, and Adele Black, curriculum collaborator on the Proj ..... 
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Township Roads: Some things I never thought

Fri, Dec 27th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

The end of every year stimulates my memory. My family often tells me that they cant remember the circumstances of many of the stories I tell, but I guarantee I dont make them up. Not all of them anyway. Having a memory for events may be a mixed ble ..... 
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Notes from a country kitchen

Fri, Dec 27th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

God bless thy year!

Thy coming in, thy going out,  Thy rest, thy traveling about,  The rough, the smooth,  The bright, the dear,  [Read the Rest]

The commute: My friend died

Fri, Dec 27th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Id planned to write this column about New Years resolutions and my aversion to physical exercise, but every time I start to write it, I am thinking about Deanne, who died December 16.

At the age of two, she was diagnosed with ..... 
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Prairie Notes: Clearer vision

Fri, Dec 27th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Coming of age during the 70s when we stopped using outdoor lights and started driving 55 in order to save energy makes me hesitant to applaud the proliferation of Christmas lights, but I am awed by the extent to which we will go to celebrate the sea ..... 
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Notes from a country kitchen

Fri, Dec 20th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

I'm thinking of   our Christmas tree  of many years ago,  a lovely pine, tall, freshly cut,  with candles all aglow.

Went drivin ..... 
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Journal Writing Project: Eric Leitzen

Fri, Dec 20th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Ah yes, the time is here again. Christmas. Just the mere mention of that word brings thoughts of warmth and love, doesnt it? For me, I see my family at the table for Christmas dinner, all ten of us now. However, there are many people outside my fami ..... 
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Notes from a country kitchen

Fri, Dec 13th, 2002
Posted in Columnists

Are you done shopping? I remember years ago it was almost Christmas and I hadn't done any shopping for my kids, so my husband baby-sat and I ran uptown late afternoon and shopped. I got the kids a little gift, my mother some cotton stocking, and my d ..... 
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