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It’s official: The worst fire season in California history has arrived. The Californian's coverage points out that our warming climate played an important role.

Houchin Community Blood Bank calls out to all the O- blood type residents of Kern County to please step up and donate blood this week and throughout the holiday season. Houchin is desperately low on O- red cells this week, the universal blood type that can go to anyone.

As Donald Trump’s royal reign begins to crumble from within, the GOP, once the party of family values and toughness on crime, has circled their shameless carcasses around the Boy King to ensure that their extremely unpopular tax bill remains safe. Trump loves the bill as it gives him a $20 m…

Please tell me we, the taxpayers, are not paying for the indiscretions of our elected officials. If so, ethics committee members need to write a bill that would require that these “payoffs” come out of the individual’s pocket and not out of ours. Any monies paid out of our taxes should be re…

The thought of Charles Manson being buried in Union Cemetery is appalling. Union Cemetery is the final resting place of many fine and brave soldiers who fought and died so that we could remain free. To bury such a one as Charles Manson among them is an insult and a desecration.

Dumb as a bag of hammers. That is my best description of the proposed Congressional Republican income tax reforms. For reasons unknown, they are ignoring the wildly successful President Ronald Reagan tax reforms of the 1980s, reforms that doubled income tax revenues by simply passing across-…

I wholeheartedly agree that neo-Nazi Charles Manson, who was dedicated to fomenting race wars and racial hatred, should not be buried anywhere near Kern County. To do so would be sacrilegious and extremely disrespectful to our valued, diverse society.

President Trump tweeted Saturday that he knew Michael Flynn lied to the FBI when he fired him as national security adviser in February, a month after assuming office. However, General Flynn was for months Trump's closest and most constant advisor. It was Flynn who led the raucous chant at th…

The Nov. 29 letter “Moore must have surely repented” has gone multiple steps too far. The “root cause” of sexual harassment is not elitism but an uninhibited power complex resulting in a personality that needs to dominate other individuals. This transcends class, political power, and economi…

Initially I was opposed to high speed rail because it was going to destroy Bakersfield High School and be two blocks south of my front porch. Then some changes were made, BHS was saved and it didn’t seem as bad, other than being a complete waste of taxpayer's money. Then the City of Bakersfi…

It turns out Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and I have something in common. Both of us have old family lore that claims relationship to historic people. In the case of Sen. Warren it was a relationship to pre-European Americans.

The State of California is asking the federal government for $9 billion in disaster aid to help rebuild from the devastating fires this past summer. The Trump administration had $29 billion set aside, needless to say, but California's request for aid was rejected — we will not get a single p…

The meager cuts aimed at the middle class will eventually expire in this Republican-sponsored tax reform bill. If they are made permanent by some future Congress, it will explode the deficit. Supposed concern about deficits will be used a justification for "entitlement reform." That's not-so…

President Donald Trump's attack of CNN and CNN International is the most childish behavior of any president I've seen. Praising Fox News as the only legitimate news agency is a joke. Divided we are and divided this nation will stay since we cannot tolerate each other's political views.

Our president recently tweeted a challenge to the nation's major TV networks, excluding Fox, to a contest: the fakest one would receive a fake news trophy. I never thought I’d see the day that the person who holds the most prestigious office in the United States would resort to such pettines…

The Sunday article on Kern's P-cards ("Despite risks, county credit cards appear an effective tool for purchases," Nov. 26) was informative. The purchasing of various small items via this procedure can be efficient and cost effective.

Kern County workers deserve thanks during this holiday season. They maintain our parks and roads, take care of our children in need and make Kern County a good place to do business.

I have been following the articles about the ongoing attempt to repeal the latest, egregious, gas tax that was forced upon us by Gov. Jerry Brown. I totally support this repeal effort.

After standing in line over 45 minutes to pay property taxes because the box to deposit checks is full, I mentioned they could empty the box. Well, the implied reason for the wait and inconvenience is that it is faster and more convenient to pay online. To use a debit or credit card will cos…

The recent “Supervisors chip in $100,000” to connect Meadows Field to Texas article was good news to this business traveler. However if the service comes back (again), fares must be reasonable or travelers will continue their “leak” to L.A. airports.

There is a difference in the recent revelations of past sexual misconduct by disgraced ex-Judge Roy Moore and Sen. Al Franken. Moore was a powerful official in the Alabama judicial system who preyed on children; Franken was a third-rate comedian who occasionally played tasteless and sexist j…

I remember our Thanksgiving in 2014. For some reason I decided to grab two blank pieces of paper and draw a big turkey on one. We all colored it, and we took the other paper and wrote down what we were each thankful for. My grown children and my husband and I used it as a decoration for our …

Would like to compliment Dr. Brik McDill on his column in Tuesday's Californian ("We deserve some answers from McCarthy". But, how does one even reach Congressman Kevin McCarthy in order to pose any questions. Like, why he seems to vote against Democrats and not for the people that elected h…

For a follow-up to Steven Cronquist's Community Voices article ("California's role, responsibility in global climate debate," Nov. 14), there is an excellent Youtube video prepared for the Australian vote on the carbon control issue in that country that applies similarly to our efforts in Ca…

This afternoon, at JC Penney, I was in one department waiting for my wife who was shopping in another department, and I bumped into a shelf just enough to put a slight scratch on my arm. Other senior-citizen types will agree that it doesn't take much of a scratch on our old skin to start ble…

The recent “Supervisors chip in $100,000” to connect Meadows Field to Texas article was good news to this business traveler. But if the service comes back (again), fares must be reasonable or travelers will continue their “leak” to L.A. airports.

I recently read the article headlined "Texas church gunman escaped from mental health center," written by Associated Press writers Norman Merchant, Jim Vertuno and Will Weissert. However, I don't think Devin Kelley, the gunman, should have been held in a mental health center. He should have …

Religious/political fundamentalism can frequently be considered an addiction that may result in adopting some rather extreme and distorted views of reality. Consider the following head spinners: Franklin Graham, an evangelical Christian supporter of Trump, compared him to Abraham, Moses and …

Regarding Anne Grogan's comments in the Nov. 11 Sound Off column: Oh please, Ms. Grogan, can you honestly believe Trump was just using "words" on the Access Hollywood tape? This from a man who said "I could shoot someone on 5th Avenue and people would still vote for me."

The Sequoia Kings Canyon National Park as well as other national parks are proposing in 2018 a drastic entrance fee hike to $70. This is a result of the president's 12 percent budget cut to the Department of the Interior.

Every year on Nov. 11 I find myself in a dilemma. I served in the U.S. Army for two years (1955-1956) in Japan, but I do not feel I am a veteran. I guess because I was one of the lucky ones — too young for World War II and the  Korean War and too old and with a family for Vietnam.

I am grateful that Daniel and Phil Rudnick have vowed to continue their entrepreneurial quest to develop a world-class festival venue in Kern County. Whether county leadership’s analysis was clouded by NIMBYs or they simply doubt our community can handle logistical tasks roughly on par with …

Saturday was Veterans Day. Donald Trump, whose bone spurs have apparently improved, has not only met with Vietnamese President Tran Dai Quang but also stated that he believes Russian President Vladimir Putin had nothing to do with meddling in the last U. S. presidential election.

I was truly inspired after reading Richard Beene's segment in the Oct. 27 Californian entitled "Cannabis." He described a 76-year-old Arvin farmer and businessman named John Trino who had been opposed to marijuana use, believing it to be a dangerous "gateway drug" that should be banned.

I have been following the articles describing the changes to the tax code that are being proposed. The one that really caught my attention is the attempt to stop people from deducting state income taxes from federal returns.