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Jan. eight, 2018 – The Denver Post

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The weekly newsletter of The Denver Post’s opinion pages.

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David Fitzsimmons, The Arizona Daily Star

The past week’s news included a major policy change on legal marijuana, the shooting death of a Douglas County sheriff’s deputy, and the release of a book dissecting President Donald Trump’s first year in the White House. Here are highlights:

Perspective

First, a summary of what was in our Sunday Perspective section this week:

Giving democracy the finger: Christopher Hill, dean of the Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver, wrote that despite more and more countries holding elections in recent years, democracy itself is increasingly in peril around the world.

An Iraqi woman holds up her hand and shows a purple finger, indicating she has just voted, on Jan. 30, 2005.

Andrew Parsons, AP/Pool

An Iraqi woman holds up her hand and shows a purple finger, indicating she has just voted, on Jan. 30, 2005.

Did Sessions just boost legalization? The Washington Post’s Paul Waldman wrote that Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who hates marijuana, may get what he wants for now with his crackdown on pot — but in the end he probably did a great service to the legalization movement.

The meaning of middle class: Scott Wasserman, president of the Bell Policy Center, wrote that in Denver, being “middle class” — having an income range between between $42,000 and $136,000 a year — doesn’t necessarily mean that a family can actually support itself.

Doing right by Dreamers: In its Sunday editorial, The Denver Post’s editorial board wrote: About 800,000 Dreamers live in the United States, with 17,000 of them in Colorado. Politicians need to stop using them as bargaining chips and start treating them like human beings.

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Christopher Weyant, The Boston Globe

Letters to the editor: On the letters page, Denver Post readers tackled a number of issues. Here are several of their letters:

U.S. needs a balanced budget amendment: Washington Post columnist George F. Will wrote: Without a constitutional amendment requiring balanced budgets, we’re going to discover the hard way at what percentage the debt’s deleterious effect on economic growth becomes severe.

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Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle

CDOT’s mission creep: Jon Caldara, who is a former RTD director, wrote that “transportation” no longer means what you thought — as in roads and bridges — it now means whatever planners want it to mean, now or in the future.

Going too far with pot celebrations: Syndicated columnist Froma Harrop criticized CNN’s coverage of a New Year’s Eve pot party in Denver and suggested Californians are celebrating the wrong thing when they revel with unbridled joy over their new freedom to use marijuana.

CNN reporter Randi Kaye (bottom right) poses with Michael Eymer and Heidi Keyes of Colorado Cannabis Tours on Dec. 31 in Denver.

Photo courtesy Heidi Keyes

CNN reporter Randi Kaye (bottom right) poses with Michael Eymer and Heidi Keyes of Colorado Cannabis Tours on Dec. 31 in Denver.

A new story in Nucla: Richard Linnett, who lives near the western Colorado town of Nucla, wrote that the locals are happy to have the media come to town and report on something new — the area’s burgeoning hemp industry — rather than Nucla’s 2013 law requiring everyone to own a gun.

Paid family leave for all: Jonna Ashley, a member of MomsRising Colorado who had to use up all her vacation and sick time when her son was born prematurely, urged Colorado lawmakers to consider the Family and Medical Leave Insurance (FAMLI) Act.

PERA’s path forward: Timothy M. O’Brien, who is chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Public Employees’ Retirement Association and Denver’s city auditor, offered five things to keep in mind as lawmakers discuss the future of PERA.

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Adam Zyglis, The Buffalo News

Another look at Clinton emails: The Washington Post’s Ed Rogers suggested it’s time for another look at Hillary Clinton’s emails, as Americans need to be assured that Clinton not only operated lawfully, but that she was not treated differently than anyone else would have been.

Run, Mitt, Run: The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent wrote that a Mitt Romney Senate run — and victory — could set an example for other congressional Republicans to follow when it comes to acting as a check on President Donald Trump’s many excesses.

Drawn to the News: Here are the editorial cartoons we featured on the back page of Sunday’s Perspective section, on the topic of Kim Jong-un and Donald Trump’s nuclear button boasts:

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Nate Beeler, The Columbus Dispatch

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Joe Heller, www.hellertoon.com


The past week

Here are highlights from last week’s opinion coverage:

Denver Post editorials:

Jeff Sessions wrong on marijuana laws: Unable to slow the tide of marijuana legalization that is sweeping the nation, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is instead making a reckless move to quell progress.

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John Cole, politicalcartoons.com

Reaction to Dougco deputy’s death: In Colorado there are far too many instances of deadly outcomes when mental health needs fall through the cracks. In the end we all want the same thing — better outcomes.

Education tax hike? We’re listening: The constant noise from Colorado school funding advocates would be annoying if the need wasn’t so acute. We’re glad to see possible ballot measures seek to raise taxes for education.

Op-ed columns:

Trump’s 10 best moves: Conservative Washington Post columnist Marc A. Thiessen offered his list of the 10 best things Donald Trump has done in his first year as president.

Trump’s 10 worst moves: Thiessen then offered his list of the 10 worst things Trump has done in his first year.

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Nate Beeler, The Columbus Dispatch

Banish the term “fake news”: Weekly Denver Post columnist Krista Kafer wrote: Since “fake news” no longer represents anything meaningful, let’s banish the term from public discourse and replace it with something more accurate.

Handicapping the 2018 elections: Albert R. Hunt wrote: All national elections are hyped as seminal, but the midterms of 2018 are the real deal and the early line is good for Democrats.

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David Fitzsimmons, The Arizona Daily Star

The census and the Constitution: Catherine Rampell of The Washington Post wrote: The Constitution requires the decennial census to count all people, not just all citizens — but Republican lawmakers and the rest of the administration appear to have other priorities.

A memo to Jeff Sessions: Ron Carleton, who was an architect of Colorado’s marijuana regulations, urged U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to restore the Cole memo, which kept the federal government from going after states where pot is legal.

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RJ Matson, Roll Call

Forget treason, look at money laundering: Timothy L. O’Brien of Bloomberg View wrote that comments by Steve Bannon in Michael Wolff’s new book, “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” point toward the serious possibility of money laundering by the Trump family.

Letters to the editor:

Jeff Sessions’ decision to stop protecting states with legal marijuana (3 letters)

Should Congress provide more funding for Down syndrome research? (2 letters)

Trump’s boast about a bigger nuclear button than North Korea’s (2 letters)

E-bikes should be treated like motorized vehicles, which they are

It’s been 50 years since work began on the Eisenhower-Johnson tunnels

The cost of health insurance in the U.S. is out of control

Suggestions for bringing down the cost of health care

All of Trump’s outrageous actions deserve full news coverage

 

Notable and quotable

“I went from VERY successful businessman, to top T.V. Star to President of the United States (on my first try). I think that would qualify as not smart, but genius….and a very stable genius at that!”

President Donald Trump, via Twitter



The Sound Off, which is emailed to subscribers every Monday, is a roundup of what we’ve been publishing on the opinion pages over the past week. That includes Denver Post editorials, op-ed columns by Post columnists like Chuck Plunkett and Megan Schrader as well as nationally syndicated columnists like George F. Will and Catherine Rampell, plus guest commentaries, letters to the editor and editorial cartoons.

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Steve Breen, San Diego Union-Tribune

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