Viewpoints

Wed
21
Aug

Word for Word 8/21/19

Rev. Ron Pederson
Rev. Ron Pederson

How Can We Be Ready To Meet Our Maker?
    
Jesus said:  “Because I live, you shall live also” (John 14:19)

Certainly we cannot make ourselves alive spiritually. That would be impossible. For in order for us make ourselves spiritually alive we would have to keep all the commandments perfectly. God’s Law demands that we be perfect. God is perfect and He demands no less of us. Jesus said: “Be perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect.” All it takes is just one sin and we stand condemned before God.  Jms writes: “Whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.” And even if were able to avoid outward sins, God’s Law demands that we must be sinless in all our thoughts too. And that means we must never have one thought of lust, revenge, or jealously, or hold any grudges against anyone.

Wed
21
Aug

Letter to the Editor: The fight to save the Affordable Care Act

To the Editor:

The fight to save the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and affordable healthcare isn’t over for Iowans. This time the Trump Administration is trying to repeal the ACA through the courts. The case is currently before the 5th Circuit of Appeals and the health care of hundreds of thousands of Iowans hangs in the balance.

If the lawsuit is successful, Iowans will be affected by higher premiums, loss of protections on pre-existing conditions, and a rise in prescription drug charges. We cannot return to a time when women pay more, seniors pay more, and young people are no longer covered by their parents’ insurance. The health care of 187,000 Iowans is at risk.

Wed
14
Aug

Word for Word 8/14/19

Fr. Mark Osterhaus
Fr. Mark Osterhaus

In late July, Dr. Michael Luick-Thrams gave a presentation at St. Patrick Church in Waukon.  He covered two themes:  anti-German hysteria during World War I, and Ku Klux Klan activities in Northeast Iowa during the 1920’s. Dr. Luick-Thrams had given other presentations in our community over the summer, including a Memorial Day presentation on POWs from the Midwest in German POW camps during WWII, as well as their German counterparts held at camps near Clarinda and Algona, Iowa. Dr. Luick-Thrams gave example after example of how easy it is to pick a race, an ethnic group, or religious group and use them as scapegoats for what ever we think is wrong with our society. The presentation reminded me of when I was in high school, we told “Polack” jokes. While the dominant group can say this is all “in good fun”, the wounds delivered by our comments and actions can last a long time.

Wed
07
Aug

Letter to the Editor: We are supposed to be a united nation

To the Editor:

What is the meaning of equal? To some it is just a five-letter word with no meaning!

It should not matter if you are Democrat or Republican. It should not matter your skin color, your religion or your nationality! It should not matter if you are a man or woman. It should not matter if you are a single homeowner or a large company! Equal should mean the same for everyone and everyone should be treated as such!

Can there be any respect for those that know the meaning of equal, but do not think it applies to everyone?

Let me refresh them about the meaning of equal - alike in quantity, value, rank, ability, etc., even, one who or which is equal!

There needs to be a change! Maybe there are other words they need help with the meaning! Knowing the meaning, I guess, does not  mean they are honest enough to follow that meaning!

Honest: without deceit or fraud; upright; sincere.

Wed
31
Jul

Letter to the Editor: Continuing to work to assure the long-term viability of VMH

To the Editor:

This letter is in response to Mayor Pat Stone’s column in the July 24 issue of The Standard.

As a councilman for Waukon, I have been involved in the monitoring of the developments related to the economic situation with Veterans Memorial Hospital since I took my seat just over a year ago. The hospital is in the midst of a several year financial downturn due to many different factors.

VMH’s financial struggles are not foreign to critical access hospitals. VMH has outperformed other critical access hospitals of similar size and type. That level of hospital is averaging -10% outcomes on their budgets.

Fortunately, the majority of the council (Hatlan, Rausch and Ellingson) has shown a strong commitment to support VMH, its board, and staff through these times of struggle.

Wed
31
Jul

Letter to the Editor: Viable plan for continuing operation of the hospital is needed

To the Editor:

As many of you know, I am a city councilman in Waukon, and am very passionate about our community. I spend hours preparing for meetings in an effort to make the best decision on the issues.

It is never easy taking an unpopular stance on any issue, but the one involving the City issuing a warrant for a second renewal of a $750,000 loan was especially difficult. I have neighbors, friends and relatives employed there, all of who are committed to providing us the best care. I want to see the hospital survive.

I have never uttered the words “The hospital must close.”

I’ve been asked why I’m the only one to not vote in favor of the warrant. As a CPA, I have dealt with financial issues daily for my entire career. I believe that committing large sums of money for the third time is not the right financial decision, with no plan in place to provide the best opportunity to survive.

Wed
31
Jul

Letter to the Editor: Veterans Memorial Hospital is more than just numbers

To the Editor:

Rarely, in any given situation, is there only one side to a story. “Facts” are often skewed by emotion, history, or simple miscommunication. In light of recent publicity regarding Veterans Memorial Hospital, we would like to offer another point of view.

VMH is not just numbers, cost reports, or profit/loss margins. While these things are important to address, we are so much more than that. VMH has been, and will remain, part of the fabric of this community. It is staffed by dedicated individuals who have, in many instances, made this facility, and the patients we serve, our life’s work. Together we represent hundreds of years of combined experience caring for your loved ones. We have done so on a shoestring budget, so we are very aware of the dollars and cents of being a small rural hospital.

Wed
31
Jul

Letter to the Editor: Agreement on working hard to prevent fulfillment of the prophecy

To the Editor:

I found it interesting and somewhat ironic that in his July 17 letter to the editor, Lowell Engle described proposals by several Democratic presidential candidates for single-payer health care (Medicare) and reducing student debt as “handouts.”  If he had paid attention, he would have learned that the costs of these programs are paid for.

What is not paid for is the huge tax break given to relatively few wealthy people and corporations in the 2018 Tax Bill, creating historic budget deficits and adding over a trillion dollars to our debt. I call that a handout.  What happened to the party of fiscal responsibility?

Mr. Engle’s attempt to portray the Democratic Party as not really democratic, but pushing towards “socialism and communism,” is simply a scare tactic to distract us from the fact that the Republican Party has been sabotaged and discredited by those who are driven by profit and power. 

Wed
24
Jul

Letter to the Editor: Tree preservation should be considered

To the Editor:

Recently, we were driving to visit family in Minnesota and drove through Chatfield, a town of about 2,800. They are going through a similar process as Waukon with their sidewalks and streets. What was very different was that instead of cutting the trees down in the boulevards they put a protective skirting around the bottom of each tree during construction.

It was quite refreshing to see a community that appreciates the aesthetic value of trees and is also aware of the economic and environmental value of trees. In 2010 Northeast Iowa RC&D identified every tree on Waukon City property and noted its species and condition. They estimated the positive economic impact from the trees was over $240,000 annually.

Wed
24
Jul

Letter to the Editor: Great stage performances in nearby community

To the Editor:

I note that a good number of people around here are willing to travel to Branson, Nashville, Chicago or elsewhere to see plays, musicals or concerts. We lived over 40 years in Chicago and have been fortunate to have seen some wonderful stage performances.

Living here, we have been surprised to discover that there is an amazing amount of talent close by - an hour’s drive away in Lanesboro, MN. This town of 750 consists of a group of professional performers who constitute The Commonweal Theatre Company. Each year they put on five plays, each with about 40 performances. Unlike large venues, this small theatre allows a close view of the performers.

Two of their best shows are currently on stage - “Boeing Boeing,” one of the funniest shows we have ever seen, and “Peter and the Starcatcher,” a lively spoof of the pirate life, are currently playing there.  Boeing Boeing runs through August and Peter and the Starcatcher through October.

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