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Editorials

COVID-19 is here; no need to panic

Brown County has its first case of COVID-19. Martin Luther College President Mark Zarling was diagnosed as postive on Monday, the college reports, making it the first confirmed case in Brown County. Zarling had traveled to the Seattle area, which is likely where he was exposed to the ...

We can’t keep outsourcing health care equipment

Sources ranging from the CIA to the Census Bureau disagree on how reliant we Americans are on drugs and medical equipment imported from China. Extend that to international agencies and the variances are even greater. For example, some sources place China far down on the list of countries ...

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Challenge, response THUMBS UP: The events of the past couple of weeks with the COVD-19 virus outbreak culminated this week with Gov. Tim Walz doing what other states have already done, issuing a “Stay at Home” order for Minnesota. His order asks us all to shelter in place, to avoid going ...

Time to double down in helping others

We Americans are renowned for our compassionate generosity. When we learn of a need, we rush to fill it. It is time to double-down on that attitude of helping others. Throughout the nation, tens of thousands of non-profit organizations — some big national ones, others strictly local — are ...

Temper ingenuity with caution

There is a reason “Yankee ingenuity” is recognized throughout the world. We Americans have a reputation for identifying challenges and devising ways to overcome them. Use your head if you decide to come up a home remedy, a way to stretch supplies such as those of food — or any other ...

Aid for workers

Congress is moving at an agonizingly slow pace as it works on a $2 trillion package of aid to bolster the economy during the COVID-19. After the package whipped through the House it has bogged down in the Senate as Democrats and Republicans argue over how the money will be distributed and to ...

Insider trading?

Millions of dollars in stock transactions on behalf of five U.S. senators have raised serious questions about their ethics — and whether they broke laws against insider trading. Clearly, the matter needs to be investigated, but not as a witch hunt with the preconceived notion that someone ...

Let’s be ready for inner space woes

At President Donald Trump’s urging, the United States is adding a sixth branch — the “Space Force” — to our armed forces, in order to defend the vast region beyond our amosphere. Perhaps we should be thinking of inner space, instead. Throughout the nation, public health officials ...

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Why hoard toilet paper? THUMBS DOWN: One of the more bizarre aspects of the COVID-19 situation is the way people are hoarding toilet paper, snatching it up off of store shelves as if only a closet full of Charmin is going to protect them from sure death. You walk into any grocery store and the ...

Unpredictable events hard to prepare for

The U.S. health care system — and thus, public policy regarding it — is coming under fire because of COVID-19. Among complaints are that there are not enough COVID-19 test kits, not enough ventilator machines to help sufferers breath, no vaccine to be available quickly and not enough ...

Knowledge is power

It is likely our awareness of how widespread COVID-19 is in the United States represents only the tip of the iceberg. Until widespread testing kicks in, many among us made by carrying the virus unknowingly, both to themselves and the rest of us. Still, paying attention to what information we ...

Highway 14 funding bill passes Legislature

The Minnesota Legislature made quick work of the Highway 14 funding bill announced earlier by Gov. Tim Walz. The bill is being sent to Walz, who is expected to sign it. The bill, passed on Tuesday by the House and the Senate, allows the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) to secure ...

Don’t let panic push you into hoarding

Prudence, not panic, needs to be the order of the day among Americans. Unfortunately, not everyone seems to have gotten the memo. During a press conference Sunday, President Donald Trump noted that heads of major retail companies had told him something he never expected to hear: Don’t buy ...

Closing schools for COVID-19

On Sunday, Minnesota joined the growing number of school districts across the nation who are closing down because of concern that keeping them open might help spread COVID-19 — the coronavirus. State and school officials are well aware that shutting down schools, perhaps for weeks, is not ...

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State of emergency Pointer: Facing the unknown threat of the COVID-19 virus, the state and the nation continued to shut down events and gatherings in an effort to slow the spread of the virus. President Trump declared a national state of emergency, while Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz did the same ...

US is taking COVID-19 seriously

This week the nation showed how seriously it is taking the coronavirus outbreak. The NBA postponed its season Wednesday after one of the players on the Utah Jazz tested positive for the disease. The NHL quickly followed suit on Thursday, and Major League Baseball announced it is cancelling its ...

Have e-cigarette execs been blowing smoke?

Big tobacco lied for many years about the adverse health effects associated with its product. We know that. It has been proven in court through billions of dollars in settlements by some companies. The same goes for some in the drug industry, who knew even as they were reaping windfall ...

Time to rebuild trust

One of the most important messages to come out of the Dioceses of New Ulm’s Chapter 11 hearing on Tuesday was this — it doesn’t end here. The diocese declared for Chapter 11 reorganization last year so it could negotiate a plan for compensating victims of clerical sex abuse in the ...

Troubling poll reveals worries about census

Learning how many people live in the United States — and how they live — is important for any number of reasons. That is why the census is conducted every decade. Information the census collects is of interest not just to demographers. It is used to apportion states’ members of the U.S. ...

Drug shortage warning serves as wake-up call

Shaving a few dollars off the cost to consumers of some medicines — and yes, padding profits on their sale — have led many U.S. drug companies to rely on overseas manufacturers for the products. Recently, the truth of warnings against such dependence was proven. U.S. public health ...