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Wednesday, November 13, 2019
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  • Wednesday, November 13, 2019 4:00 AM
    On Sept. 26, former Montgomery County Sheriff Mark Casteel accepted a new job as Montgomery County Administrator. The position is a new one and the goal of creating it was to have someone on board to help the commissioners handle the day-to-day business of the county, such as budgeting and supervising department heads. He’s been hard at work for a few weeks now and I thought it would be a good time to sit down with him and see how he likes his new job!

    FREY: This is a brand-new position. What are you most excited about achieving?
    CASTEEL: I’m most excited about the possibilities this position brings with it. Historically the commissioners have been tasked with conducting all of their normal business and managing the day to day operations of the county as part-time employees of the county. All three of the commissioners have full-time jobs outside of their elected positions. It is obvious to me this is an unreasonable expectation. This position will allow the commissioners to focus more on the issues facing our county (past/present/future) while I focus more on the day to day operations. I feel this will make the commissioner’s office more efficient moving forward.
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  • Wednesday, November 13, 2019 4:00 AM
    Climate change is increasingly recognized as a threat to our environment, our economy and human well-being. Many wonder what this daunting subject means for the world around them, and what we, as citizens and as a society, can do to address the problem? John Smillie, Crawfordsville resident and member of Citizens’ Climate Lobby (CCL) – a grassroots, non-partisan advocacy organization focused on national policy responses to climate change – delivered a presentation on these topics at Lunch with the League on Nov. 4 at Whitlock Hall in Crawfordsville. 
    The presentation began with the scientific facts and impacts of climate change. There is overwhelming agreement in the scientific community that human activities, particularly fossil fuel usage, are releasing greenhouse gases, mainly carbon dioxide (CO2), into the atmosphere and warming our planet. Earth’s average temperature is already around 1 degree Celsius higher than pre-industrial levels, and this increase drives more severe weather around the globe. Droughts and floods are becoming more common. Wildfires are growing in size and frequency. Hurricanes are becoming more destructive. Sea level rise is already plaguing coastal cities like Baltimore and Miami Beach with flooded streets. These problems get worse with each degree of warming. In order to keep warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) says we need to cut CO2 emissions in half by 2030, and to net-zero by 2050.
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  • Wednesday, November 13, 2019 4:00 AM
    Let me say that I’m often amazed when someone I don’t know comments on something I wrote. It’s hard for me to believe that anyone thinks my scribblings are worth the time . . . Beyond that though, what really leaves me scratching the declining hairs on my head is when there is a lot of agreement.
    Bewildered and grateful, might be two appropriate words.
    So thank you very kindly for the over-the-top reaction to last week’s babblings about the national anthem. I can’t think of anything I’ve written – with the exception to a column questioning the talent of a high school football team in West Texas – that’s drawn so much reaction. And I certainly do not believe anything has ever generated so much positive reaction.
    It gives me faith in our future.
    No, not because of my writing. Far from it. It gives me hope because so many of you agree that the insanity must stop – particularly when it comes to the very glue that holds this country together, our patriotism.
    If your outpouring was any indication, this country is in better shape than many people think. And that, my friends, feels pretty darn good!
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  • Monday, November 11, 2019 4:00 AM
    On This Day. . .
    If you're celebrating your birthday today not only is it one of our most significant days of the year being Veteran's day .. . you're also in good company with some pretty cool people who were born on Nov. 11 as well. Starting with, Kurt Vonnegut Jr. American author who was born in 1922. Vonnegut is best known for his writings of such books as Slaughterhouse Five and Sirens of Titan. He was also born right here in our home state in Indianapolis!
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  • Monday, November 11, 2019 4:00 AM
    This week I want to address a specific variant of a condition that I’ve been seeing a lot of lately – dizziness. Primary Care doctors in the U.S. see about six million patients a year with dizziness.
    Dizziness means different things to different people and can be a symptom of many different medical conditions. People usually describe being dizzy when they feel faint or lightheaded or when they feel like their environment is spinning. This latter sensation is called vertigo, from the Latin vertere meaning “to turn.”
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  • Sunday, November 10, 2019 4:00 AM
    I recently came across an article I wrote during the 2008 election. At that time, I was a conservative, Christian, homeschool mom who was excited that a “woman like me” might have a chance at the White House. The article addressed the disappointment I felt attending a party where talk centered around bashing Sarah Palin and her supporters.
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  • Friday, November 8, 2019 4:00 AM
    The Dales . . . at least our Dale family when I was growing up, rarely went to a doctor. It basically had to be an extreme emergency or a life or death situation. When my father passed away at age 66, he had NEVER been to a doctor until his second heart attack. No, he never even told anyone about his first heart attack. Until then, he had also never taken a prescription . . . or even an aspirin!
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  • Friday, November 8, 2019 4:00 AM
    My wife and I dress in separate rooms when we are going out for the evening, then we meet downstairs and give each other the once-over. We used to get dressed together, but we realized as we got older that the anticipation of what the other one would be wearing was an inexpensive way to amuse ourselves.
    “So, Dick, what are you going to wear tonight?”
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  • Thursday, November 7, 2019 2:44 AM
    Can you believe it is November already? Fall is here with the cooler weather. Hope you have been enjoying the beautiful fall colors. 
    Our volunteer drivers have escorted seven veterans to Roudebush Hospital in Indianapolis, and four veterans to Danville, Ill. I had 83 phone calls and 29 people come into my office this past month.
    By the way, I have a Captel Captioned demonstration phone for those with a hearing loss who have trouble hearing phone conversations in my office. It is a phone that you read the conversation and it will cost you nothing at all. If you have a land line or Wi-Fi connectivity or Bluetooth connectivity you can be hooked up to the phone, so please call me. 
    Please call me at (765) 401-0432 if you would like to attend the Wabash Football Game on Saturday Nov. 9. All veterans will be honored at halftime of the Wabash / Hiram football game. I have complimentary tickets in my office, or they can be picked up at the American Legion. Game time is at 1 p.m. and all veterans will be seated together in a reserved area for them. Also prior to the game the Post 72 Honor Guard will give a Rifle Salute followed by taps. Please come and get your tickets. 
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  • A man from strong and good stock
    Thursday, November 7, 2019 2:43 AM
    Montgomery County has been extremely blessed to having so many talented writers and artists, and I was recently asked about one of the latter. Yes, I had heard of the man, but couldn’t really tell Bev much concerning him.
    As soon as I got home, I checked my very large (320,000+) people database, mainly area ones and I had him in there with a census record or two but nothing to really give me a feel of who he really was. So, the search began and what a fun and interesting one it turned out to be.
    Fred Nelson Vance was a native-born Montgomery Countian, viewing his first peak at the world on a somewhat artistic date even, 8-8-80. Born to a talented artist and intellectual reader, George M. and Josephine Nelson Vance, he was the only one of their three children to live to adulthood. Sadly, since Fred had no children, the talent stopped there or perhaps there is a cousin or two still spreading beauty? 
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  • Wednesday, November 6, 2019 3:14 AM
    I am many things – a husband, father, grandfather, Catholic, American, a fat guy, a journalist, a business owner . . . Like everyone, the list could go on. We all are a lot of things – some that define our character, some that don’t.
    And there are some of those things (even though pride is not something we’re supposed to focus on) that I am proud of – journalist being one. That may not be a wise thing to say in today’s world, but I tend to think of journalism as a profession that chronicles life in home towns and not so much the muck-raking version others see.
    Then I read an article from the New York Times and I don’t feel so proud.
    You’ve surely heard of this insanity by now. If not, a reporter named Julia Jacobs had a 1,350-word piece published last week that questions television stations for playing the Star-Spangled Banner.
    “. . . the decision to revive the anthem tradition comes at a time when overt allegiance to “The Star-Spangled Banner” has become one of the lines that separate blue and red America.”
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  • Wednesday, November 6, 2019 3:12 AM
    Mr. President, How Long Must We Wait? Alice Paul, Woodrow Wilson, and THE FIGHT for the RIGHT TO VOTE by Tina Cassidy was the first book in the “Well-Read Citizen” series being co-sponsored by the League of Women Voters and the Crawfordsville Public Library as part of the 100th Anniversary celebration of women receiving the right to vote. Cassidy penned this book in 2019 and has authored several other books in addition to being a journalist for the Boston Globe.
    For most people, the name Alice Paul is not as recognizable as Susan B. Anthony or Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Paul held a PhD, a law degree, as well as masters and undergrad degrees in Economics and Biology. Born in New Jersey in 1885, she was from a Quaker family which believed male and female children should be allowed the right to an education. They were staunch abolitionists and taught their children to embrace social justice.
    Paul believed her purpose in life was to help others. Always curious, Paul went to England where she studied German, Italian, Sociology and Economics. She worked as a social worker in a settlement house and while working there, heard about women rallying trying to earn the right to vote. Anna Howard Shaw was speaking at a rally and said, “It’s impossible to be just to men, so long as men are incapable of being just to women.” It was with this alliance that Paul became a suffragette.
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  • Tuesday, November 5, 2019 4:00 AM
    Let me start with a story. “It’s Sunday, the day for my weekly trip to the grocery store. I have my list of the items I need. I am feeling confident that I can quickly grab these items and head out the door. Then disaster strikes. I am standing in front of the lunch kit’s ready to grab my lunch kit of choice, when I notice new options. I’m suddenly hit with guilt that the claims on this new lunch kit bring me. This option is made with 100% natural ingredients, and it’s the natural choice. My head starts to swirl, and I don’t know what to do. So, I grab the more expensive item with the natural claims and run to the register.” Has this ever happened to you? Let’s take a closer look and see if these marketing claims lead us to buy the healthier food. 
    First, lets talk about the term Natural. Foods labeled with the natural claim are described by the USDA as a good that is minimally processed and contains no artificial ingredients or added color. This label does not explain anything about pesticide use or nutritional value. If the label states that the food is natural it should also contain a statement explaining how. Such as there are no artificial ingredients. As we look closer at this particular label I can see in really tiny print that this label excludes half of the ingredients. 
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  • Monday, November 4, 2019 4:00 AM
    Someone told me the other day that they thought “restless leg syndrome” (RLS) was a conspiracy created by pharmaceutical companies to sell more medications. You may have seen the commercials for Requip® and Mirapex®, both drugs used to treat this condition.
    People have described symptoms suggestive of restless legs since the 17th Century. The Swedish neurologist Erik Ekborn initially coined the term in the 1940’s. We estimate that between ten to fifteen percent of Americans suffer from restless leg syndrome to some degree. The incidence in women is about twice that of men. About 40 percent of people develop symptoms prior to age twenty. Since symptoms tend to be mild initially and worsen with age, most sufferers are not diagnosed for 10 to 20 years after they start having symptoms.
    The symptoms of RLS are highly variable, but most people describe a bothersome, irresistible urge to move their legs. This urge is worse during periods of inactivity and often interferes with sleep. About 85 percent of sufferers have difficulty falling asleep. Stress and fatigue can also exacerbate the symptoms.
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  • Monday, November 4, 2019 4:00 AM
    “A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future and accepts you just the way you are.” Bernard Meltzer.
    This time of year as the days get damp and dark, I always find myself in a bit of a slump. Some years being worse than others. This year I'm trying a different tactic. I have been trying to force myself out of the house and into doing something fun with a friend at least once a week.
    We all need our own personal support group who lift you up when your down or get in the trenches and be there for you when you can't find the strength within yourself. I am so grateful to my friends. When I feel like I just can't get myself in gear they are right here to give me a loving push in the right direction. We all need friends like this. I've made amazing friendships through my work and preserved friendships that I've had since I was a kid. Last week several of us got together for a girls day and I don't think I've laughed so hard in a year! As they say, “Laughter is chicken soup of the soul.” I believe that!
    “A good friend knows all your best stories, a best friend has lived them with you, but only true friends leave footprints in your heart.” Eleanor Roosevelt.
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
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