Imagine you are talking on the phone to a loved one who is driving. You hear a scream, a crash, then silence.

Why should your personal freedoms be worth more than my life? This is the question I put to those who advocate for ever-increasing personal freedoms that put others at risk.

From time to time I receive feedback on my commentaries in print, from former co-workers or from social acquaintances. Other conservatives almost always end their comments with something along lines of: “Why bother, the media is hopelessly biased.”

Ninety-seven percent of Idaho suffers from a shortage of dentists. Almost half of Idahoans do not have dental coverage. Yet, low-cost, high-quality preventative dental care in Idaho is possible. All it would take to make basic dental care more affordable is for the Legislature to allow denta…

Humor me for a moment, while I set the stage for this example of total, ideological disregard for public safety:

Teton County, like all counties in eastern Idaho, is filled with people who want to see their friends and neighbors have a fair shot at success. You can’t have that if you’re constantly dealing with untreated health problems. I’m not surprised that 71 percent of voters in my county voted to …

Our human tendency is to see the obvious surface problem and want to simply eliminate it. It takes a lot more thinking, listening and discussion to find and face the roots of a problem. Generally, there is no quick fix that really works.

An 8-by-10 colored-glossy photo, put up on the Middle East Monitor, shows U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo meeting in a crowded hall with Saudi Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman (aka MBS) after Pompeo’s speech at Cairo University on Jan. 11.

Because I am human, I have basic human rights. I can work and earn a dignified wage. I can drink clean water and have access to food. I can get married and have children. I can keep them safe in a home in which I rent or own. But not if that human being is LBGT and living in Idaho.

Recently activist groups flooded the Idaho Capitol to argue for adding “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to the civil rights section of Idaho law. They believe adding the words will end certain kinds of discrimination in employment, housing and public accommodations.

The Targhee Pass Environmental Assessment fails to recommend the safest alternative or the best for wildlife and fails to assess all available data on wildlife-vehicle collisions. Further, it fails to plan adequately for increased traffic over the next 40 or more years.

Idaho has a great relationship to President Abraham Lincoln. History tells us he appointed 15 of our earliest officers. He signed a bill to create the Idaho Territory on March 4, 1863. He mentioned the Idaho Territory in his 1863 and 1864 address to Congress.

On Feb. 4 at noon, hundreds will gather on the steps of the Capitol with a simple message: It’s time for our legislators to honor the will of the voters and fund Medicaid Expansion without restrictions.

Reenlisting in the Idaho National Guard to deploy to Afghanistan to fight terrorists was a source of pride for me and my family. I sacrificed a lot, leaving my children behind in Boise and trading in my financially comfortable mortgage and home building career for combat boots and a dusty te…

The Post Register Editorial Board enthusiastically attacked the local Republican Party again on Jan. 16. It’s not the first time and likely won’t be the last, but a response is merited.

The bill for Idaho’s failure to seriously address our prison problem is about to come due, and it’s a big one: $500 million. That’s the cost of a proposed state prison expansion. What’s worse is that Idaho will have to issue bonds for the project which means we’re on the hook for both the pr…

There is no doubt that Donald Trump is a Russian tool. He has parroted every talking point that Vladimir Putin has projected for Russian propaganda; he has implemented every wish that Putin has designed to advance Russian interests; he has criticized our allies and alliances; and he has refu…

There are many reasons to be excited about advanced nuclear reactors. More than 50 advanced nuclear companies across North America are examining a number of options, often in partnership with Idaho National Laboratory and other U.S. Department of Energy national labs.

Editorial Cartoons

In a way, I support state Representative Chad Christensen’s bill to prohibit local jurisdictions from restricting the use of hand-held cellphones, but not for the reasons he might think.

Not long ago the Post Register began including an op-ed on Wednesdays from the Bonneville County Republicans and one from the Bonneville County Democrats on Thursdays. The benefactors are the voters of the area because they can become better informed. Numerous individuals contribute to the R…

Finally, some intelligent and rational action out of the state legislature. My congratulations and support to Rep. Jim Rice of Caldwell and his bill banning the use of hand-held mobile devices while driving. I was starting to be concerned when a local representative (you know who you are) pr…

While your commentary page has been struggling since Corey Taule found honest work, and Trillhaase was a major loss, you outdid yourself with the writer who was thrilled that states are finally allowing the murder of full-term babies. I believe he called them "health care bills."

In response to Mr. DeMott's rejection of my assessment of President Trump's character (a pathological liar, profound narcissist and so forth) and then applying that character assessment to President Obama is a classic example, I think, of what narcissistic bullies often do: project onto othe…

Recent events should help us contrast the difference between Republicans and Democrats. President Trump gave the State of the Union Address and Representative Cortez, D-N.Y., presented their new green plan. Even experienced Democrats showed disrespect for our president's speech, but stood by…

Did anyone else receive a notice from their mortgage company that due to past or projected tax increases your escrow will be short and they will be increasing your monthly house payment? Did any renters receive rent increases?

I agree with Dan McKnight’s plea to bring our warriors home. I also agree with Jim Jones that U.S. troops cannot be withdrawn from Syria and Iraq without endangering our Kurdish allies.

James Brooks’ recent article on socialism highlights the education he should have received in secondary or undergraduate education. Brooks seems to be confused on economic systems vis a vis political/governing systems and their connection (or lack thereof) to freedom.

Idaho is one of the nation’s fastest-growing states. Many of our schools are overcrowded, and our student demographics are changing rapidly. The state’s public charter school program is well-established over 20 years of work by educators, community groups, parents and students.

Recent railings against noisy young liberals really miss the mark. So what are the noisy young liberals really advocating? They may not realize it, but they are advocating for many of the same things that were available to me when I graduated from high school in 1955. They deeply resent the …

Some legislators are insisting that Medicaid expansion—enacted by 60.6 percent of the Idaho electorate—should be modified to include “work requirements.”

Statewide emergencies led to the formation of several task forces in recent years to address very fundamental Idaho values: jobs, opportunity, prosperity, and security for our families. Education, job training, and skilled-based instruction need to reach every corner of the state. I am proud…

Like the boy who cried wolf in Aesop’s Fables, Donald Trump is such a prolific and blatant liar that, even if he told the truth, who could believe him? It has been documented that he told over 2,000 lies or falsehoods during his first year in office alone and is now purportedly up to 7,000 lies.

On behalf of AARP Idaho and our 186,000 members across the Gem State, I would like to applaud Gov. Brad Little’s priorities outlined in his first State of the State address.

Thank you for publishing Michael Armstrong’s piece “Wuerthner is wrong on Wolves.” I believe Mr. Armstrong is wrong on several points also.

Mr. Kurt Hamman’s question about the wisdom of the City of Idaho Falls’ participation in the Utah Associated Municipal Power Systems’ (UAMPS) Carbon-Free Power Project (CFPP) is both valid and timely.

I wish to encourage Eric D. Meyer in his career as an author and am willing to wait to pass judgment on his book until it is actually published. However, his column published Jan. 12 raises some red flags.

The Idaho Settlement Agreement requires the radioactive calcine waste to be treated for shipment out of Idaho by 2035. The Department of Energy has issued a Record of Decision on how it proposes to treat the calcine for its transportation and disposal.

David Pecker, the publisher of The National Enquirer and other tabloids owned by American Media Inc., agreed to funnel $150,000 in hush money to Karen McDougal (a former Playboy bunny), with whom Trump had an extramarital affair prior to the 2016 election. Salacious news like this could have…

At a White House dinner, five days after his inauguration on Jan. 20, 2017, President Donald J. Trump was persuaded by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford, and Secretary of Defense James Mattis, to slacken the rules of engagement prescribed by President Obama’s …

Proponents of Medicaid expansion believe that the November election settled the issue of expansion and that the Legislature now simply needs to fund it. Recently, Jim Jones took that one step further by both attacking the Idaho Freedom Foundation and showing his ignorance of our form of government.

In 2000, the American guided missile destroyer U.S.S. Cole was taking on fuel at the port of Aden, Yemen. Two suicide bombers in a small boat pulled alongside the Cole and detonated a large cache of explosives, leaving a massive hole in the Cole, killing 17 U.S. seamen and wounding 39. Last …

The late Sam Shepard once said in a workshop that a writer can start with a small idea. It could be a place seen once, or a conversation overheard in an adjoining motel room, or a brief song played on the radio.

The invisible hand of our free market economy has been hard on the commercial nuclear industry. According to the Energy Information Administration, “Existing U.S. nuclear power generating plants operate under increasingly competitive market conditions brought on by relatively low natural gas…

I hardly remember driving home on Sunnyside that evening. Dog-tired and still thinking about two of my patients who had received devastating news a few hours earlier, I felt emotionally drained and must have slipped into autopilot. My old Chevy truck, however, knew the way home and was in a …

For more than two decades these pages have contained commentary about the canine we call a wolf. A recent op-ed claims the killing of a wolf pup by USDA Wildlife Services was a subsidy to the rancher whose animals were grazing as allowed by the entity charged with overseeing that public land…

I’m always fascinated by calls for a “realistic” foreign policy (see Jay Gaskill’s Sunday column), which usually translates to some supposed “toughness.” I’m especially skeptical about such stances when they call for kissing up to dictators like the Shah of Iran and blaming “idealistic” Demo…

There are several developments since the settlement between Idaho and DOE was negotiated. The elephant in the room is that it now appears that there will never be a waste repository licensed to accept high-level radioactive waste. The states in which that waste now resides are stuck with it …

President Trump’s recent announcement of his plans to immediately begin withdrawing American forces from Syria came as a complete surprise to both senior military leaders and many in Congress. It also marked a reversal of what many considered to be a successful military strategy in the Middl…

At end of the year, most people are inspired to reflect on the past twelve months, assess our accomplishments, and set goals for the coming year. That’s certainly true here at IDeal, Idaho’s 529 College Savings Program.

The killing of a wolf pup near Corral Creek by Sun Valley was done to protect John Peavy’s business, Flat Top Sheep Company. Once again this raises the question of why public wildlife should be killed to increase the profitability of private enterprises operating on our public lands.

Picture this: You’re a high school senior from eastern Idaho. You’ve already been automatically admitted to public higher education institutions, the University of Idaho included, on the basis of your academic qualifications (our statewide Direct Admissions program at work). But like many pe…

Signing up to be an organ donor is a great way to “pay it forward.” One unfortunate death can mean renewed life to many. Ms. Madsen, of Intermountain Donation Services, focused in her editorial on the donation of a kidney and what a difference it can make for the recipient. The big differenc…

This time of year, most Idahoans focus on a single “R” word: Reindeer. And why not—the holiday is in full-swing, the hot chocolate is flowing, and the snow is falling.

William Wordsworth wrote: “Our birth is but a sleep and forgetting. The soul which rises with us, our life’s star, hath elsewhere its setting and cometh from afar. Not in entire forgetfulness and not in utter nakedness, but trailing clouds of glory do we come from God, who is our home.”

I have always been intrigued by the basic human instinct, need, tendency — whatever word is supposed to fit in there — to control others. The intrigue has nothing to do with sharing that desire, but rather a curiosity about the psyches of those who have this tendency, and seek political powe…

The specter of starving children with stark staring eyes and skeleton-thin bodies has finally drawn attention to the Yemeni civil war that has raged between the Shiite Houthi insurgents and the Saudi-backed Hadi government since March 22, 2015.

One of the joys of the holiday season for me is finding good presents for friends and family by searching the best-of-the-year book lists. Like most years, there’s a lot to choose from in 2018.

Every year leading up to Election Day, candidates and voters call attention to issues they believe are important, ranging from the need for good schools, being able to see a doctor when they’re sick and quality roads and bridges for getting to work. Usually, the lack of affordable places to …

There has been a lot of chatter lately regarding potential presidential nominees for 2020, particularly from Democrats. While Beto O’Rourke seems to be the latest splash in the pan, others, such as Oprah Winfrey, Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson and even Michael Avenatti have been floated in the no…

“I am not an advocate for frequent changes in laws and Constitutions. But laws and institutions must go hand in hand with the progress of the human mind. As that becomes more developed, more enlightened, as new discoveries are made, new truths discovered and manners and opinions change, with…

Bob Ziel (and several others) have taken the controversy over the song “Baby its Cold Outside” to slam “lefty radicals” and insinuate we are the song police whose ultimate goal is to destroy the American way of life. Somehow I missed the original controversy but when I did hear about it, my …

In 1983, I attended the Infantry Officer Basic Course at Fort Benning, Georgia. Several classes were given by field artillery captains regarding tactics. One tactic used extensively in Vietnam was harassment and interdiction fire, or H&I. H&I was used to fire shells without any knowl…

Back in October, I wrote a letter to the editor in which I pointed out that I had found most students were not ready for college because they could not read and write well. I also pointed out that it was my belief that students dropped out of high school before graduation because they found …

The Post Register recently published an editorial asking this question why Sen. Mike Crapo isn’t on the Appropriations Committee.

The U.S. Department of Energy has a proud history of sites across the country that helped win WWII and the Cold War through nuclear weapons production and are helping keep the peace today.

Last month, we shared a story on the Idaho Falls Fire Department’s Facebook page about paying it forward and challenged others to do the same. We weren’t expecting, and were pleasantly surprised to discover, that someone had paid it forward to us.

I recently saw a list of the ten most common new year’s resolutions. The majority of the list were goals aimed at improving health in some way or time management (such as spending more time with family and friends). These are great goals, but for someone struggling with various health concer…

Editor's note: Due to an editing error, this column was originally attributed to the wrong author. It has been updated to correct the error.

Recently, Trina Pettingill complained she could not understand why anyone could vote for a party with a leader who lies on a daily basis as President Trump allegedly does. The obvious answer: usually the only alternative is to vote for Democratic candidates.

My most recent column described the tyranny of the republic. It also addressed the reasons why Idaho voters need to be concerned, i.e., because Idaho government is an oligarchy and becoming more brazen in its efforts to increase its power.

The problem with having a monopoly, one-party-rule over a given state is that the party often becomes focused on consolidating and increasing its own power and taking care of the wants/needs of the party faithful and elites, not “the people.” They can, in fact, become an “oligarchy” or a “ty…

Last week, the Post Register’s Editorial Board wrote an article calling me out by name, saying, “Who do they think they are?”

Nuclear energy is a vital component of our economy and an increasingly essential option for clean energy while building a more diverse energy portfolio to meet future demand.

Recently, the Russian Coast Guard, captured three Ukrainian naval vessels, wounding several sailors in the process. The ships were attempting to sail to Mariupol through the Azov Strait – a narrow passage between the Azov and Black Sea.

The national disgrace that is our current president is unending. Our country used to stand for something, for our values, like freedom, justice, and democracy. We were proud of our institutions like an independent judiciary, a free press and a military that did not perform domestic policing.…

Last month, Ammon city enacted a dubious policy to give taxpayer money to non-profit organizations. After the Idaho Freedom Foundation approached city officials expressing concern over the program’s constitutionality, they reversed course. Idaho Falls would do well to follow Ammon’s example …

The other night, I drove up to Rexburg to attend a town hall presented by the District 34 legislators. Senator Brent Hill, along with Representatives-elect Britt Raybould and Doug Ricks, took questions from attendees and mingled with them before and after.