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The CommStock Report: Nursing home affordability crisis

I think it was Benjamin Franklin that said "Nothing is certain in life except death and taxes." I could write and have written many reports on tax implications for farmers, but I don't know that I have written much on the topic of death. And this isn't really on death, but rather on the potential need for long term care in a nursing home which more and more becomes less a place to rehabilitate and more and more, a place for acute care needs and a final home before we pass away.

One Man’s Perspective: What? Who asked for these ‘naked’ surveys and why?

As I’ve mentioned in previous columns, I randomly receive survey results in my email. Some are extremely relevant. Some are very Iowa-centric. Some are great discussion starters. Some make you ponder … and some make you ponder, why?

Why would anyone want to know this? Why would anybody feel the need to dedicate extensive time and the required energy to create an information base for on a topic I highly doubt any sane person is seeking to learn more on?

Letter to the Editor

The other month, I traveled to California with members of the Iowa Farm Bureau to get a better sense of how Prop 12 would be implemented and how we can prevent similar initiatives from spreading across the country.

I came away from my trip with three main action points.

Letter to the Editor

On behalf of the Avenue of Flags board members and their families, we want to say THANK YOU! Thank you to all the people who volunteered their time on Memorial Day morning to put up veteran’s flags at both cemeteries and again in the evening to take them down. This is a great task, requiring many hands and Spencer showed up! With your help we can keep the Avenue of Flags going!
 Thank you again!

The CommStock Report: Preemptive tariffs on Chinese EVs will not fix EV mandate

Trump, when president, imposed tariffs on $300 billion of Chinese products, roughly two-thirds of Chinese imports. Biden left them in place and just recently added tariffs under section 301 of a 1974 trade law on sectors and products. Biden's tariffs are more strategic than blanketed. He uses a rifle while his predecessor uses a double-barreled shotgun.

Lawn & Garden: Celebrate Pollinator Month by inviting a variety of pollinators to your garden

June is National Pollinator Month and it’s a great time to celebrate all the pollinators that play an important role in producing food, fiber, medicine and more that we rely on. When you think of pollinators, bees, butterflies and hummingbirds are likely the first that come to mind. But moths, wasps, beetles, flies, bats and some other birds also help pollinate our gardens.

Home Country

When the Rafter E branded recently, a bunch of us went out to help. There’s a definite pecking order here, and it's a badge of pride to have worked your way up the branding ladder.

As a kid, you flank the calves; you grab them, throw them and hold them down. This is conducive to abrasions, muscle strain, and involuntarily changing the color of your shirt.

Extension’s Outreach: Summertime is here

As we start to feel pressured to enjoy every moment of summer, soaking up the sun, going on vacation, yard and garden work … remember that you won’t enjoy moments if you are busy chasing the next one. Take a breath and remember what is really important.

Here is what your ISU Extension & Outreach has coming up:

On Land & Water: Reflecting on my father

Seagulls screamed in the sky and dive-bombed into the boiling water. Almost everyone on the boat was casting as fast they could, shouting to avoid crossing lines as they fought frantic 2- and 3-pound white bass into the wave-rocked boat.

Pastor's Column

2 Corinthians 12:7-9 “A thorn was given me in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to harass me, to keep me from becoming conceited. Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me.” But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

Randy’s Review: ‘Bad Boys: Ride or Die’

With many characters from previous “Bad Boys” films joining Will Smith and Martin Lawrence for this fourth installment — things turn upside down in “Bad Boys: Ride or Die.” This time, detectives Mike Lowrey (Smith — who helped produce the film) and Marcus Burnett (Lawrence) find themselves on the run, pursued by a group of ex-special ops soldiers, law enforcement friends and the feds while trying to clear the name of their deceased Captain Conrad Howard (Joe Pantoliano).

Randy’s Review: ‘The Watchers’

Get ready for another Shyamalan twisting production — this time from writer and first-time director Ishana Night Shyamalan, with daddy M. Night producing.

When transplanted and despondent artist Mina (Dakota Fanning), now living in Ireland and working in a pet shop is called on to deliver an exotic parrot to the Belfast Zoo, her trip through the rural Irish countryside and a dense forest takes a very dark turn as she eventually becomes an object of interest to “The Watchers.”

Letter to the Editor: Father's Day

Father’s Day is just around the corner. According to Wikipedia, “a father is the male parent of a child.” There’s biological parenting, adoptive parenting and stepparenting, to name but three forms. Perhaps one of the most vital types of “parent” is the involved parent. It has only been since the 1950s (sociologists tell us) that fathers have become increasingly involved in the care and nurturance of their children.

Letter to the Editor: Comments on Trump's 34 guilty felony convictions

After former President Donald Trump was convicted of 34 felony counts of falsifying business records to hide a $130,000 hush money payment to adult film actress Stormy Daniels ahead of the 2016 election, our Republican leaders made the following bone-headed comments: Gov.

Guest Commentary: Reflections on Flag Day

This week, we celebrate Flag Day. Seventy-five years ago, Congress designated Flag Day to commemorate the Second Continental Congress adopting the flag resolution during the American Revolution on June 14, 1777: “Resolved, that the flag of the United States be 13 stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be 13 stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”

One Man’s Perspective: Pathetic primary voter turnout

Not going to beat around the bush here. I was really, really … really disappointed in voter turnout for last Tuesday’s Iowa primary. I believe the state average was somewhere in the 8% range. Now I will recognize that Clay County voters exceeded the state average by a whopping 1% — in the ninth percentile. That’s sarcasm.

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