A fresh look at next Farm Bill

Recently, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack laid out his priorities for the upcoming Farm Bill legislation and noted that we need to think bigger than the words “Farm Bill” suggest. This major legislative package, drafted only once every five years, is about a whole lot more than farming: It’s about supporting jobs in the future, […]

Disturbing news from neighbor

Dear Annie: We live in a large townhouse complex with people from many different backgrounds. For some time, several of the residents have been talking about a young boy who lives here. The mother, whose husband openly disparages her (and has little respect for women in general), told me her son is routinely exposed to […]

A reckoning for the freeloader

Dear Annie: My only sibling passed away six years ago. He left three adult children and a wife who walked out on him a month before he died. The two eldest children are doing great. The problem is the youngest. “Olivia” is an adroit liar and has stolen from most of the family members. Three […]

Is the assertive response always right?

There was an uncomfortable moment between my daughter and me at the airport a couple of weeks ago. We both knew she might be taking a long flight with a crying baby. Trying to avoid that scenario, we stumbled into an experience that was unforeseen. My daughter, her 4-month-old baby and I were in Terminal […]

The dark, wee hours are when you connect the dots of disaster

When that internal switch flips inside my brain promptly at 3 a.m. most every morning, and all my cerebral circuits come roaring online, I’m jolted wide awake and falling back asleep is just silliness. So, I make use of the quiet, dark hours to think (some would call it obsess) about things I just don’t […]

Stuck in the middle of a feud

Dear Annie: I have been married to “George” for more than 20 years. For most of this time, there has been tension (to put it mildly) between my husband and my mother. He rubs her the wrong way, she snipes at him, and he snipes back. I’ve had several conversations with them over the years, […]

Consider solar power

I learned a great deal from the article about wind power in Yolo County in the Oct. 9 paper. The information about the foundation for wind turbines bothered me. It seems too permanent. Why isn’t solar power being considered? Barbara Bacon Davis

Better design for garage

If we do build a new parking garage, please let’s make sure that it is better-designed than the garage next to the Holiday theater at First and F streets. It has been many years since I have parked inside that structure, for the following reasons: * If you should be driving a 1977 Chevy station wagon […]

Flavr Savr mstke

I’m afraid I must correct my own letter. The finalized point-of-purchase brochures that accompanied genetically engineered Flavr Savr tomatoes in U.S. grocery stores did indicate that an engineered protein was present in the edible fruit; they did not, however, convey how much of that protein was in each tomato. I regret the error. Belinda Martineau […]

Borders and the ‘trick-or-treat’ economy

The space formerly occupied by Borders Books & Music in Davis Commons has been temporarily taken over by a “pop-up” store —Spirit Halloween, an evolution that seemed entirely appropriate to us. Our economy now seems driven by irrational forces. Alan Greenspan, at the height of our Age of Excess, talked about “irrational exuberance,” and Joan […]

Imagining an end to hunger

Think of John Lennon’s song “Imagine,” where we take a moment to imagine a nourished and abundant world, a world where hunger is not contributing to unhealthy conditions of people, where good health prevails and “the world will live as one.” October is Hunger Awareness Month. By some accounts more than 49 million Americans (many […]

Three steps forward, why step back?

Three steps forward and… Is it inevitable that the next phrase of this sentence be: “two steps back?” I say emphatically, no, especially when it comes to Davis schools and inequality in schooling outcomes. I present four illustrations of how far we have come in the past decade addressing together how differently our “high-performing” schools […]

What do you think: What’s the best Halloween costume you’ve ever seen?

Mariana Nogueira researcher, Davis: “Last year, I saw a family. The parents were wearing chef costumes and the kids were dressed up as a crab and a lobster.” Kevin Everett photographer, Vacaville: “Nudist. (It was) my uncle.” D.J. Coyle student, Vacaville: “I always like when people dress up scary. There was a guy in our […]