Opinion

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Poverty never comes with privilege

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I hear a lot about white privilege.

I grew up in Martin County, Kentucky. We were considered one of the poorest counties in the United States.

In April 1964, President Lyndon B. Johnson and his entourage of staff, secret service, media and other politicians swarmed into the county seat of Inez during his war on poverty campaign tour. Johnson and the entourage rode through our town waving and then proceeded on down Route 3, which was less than three miles north of my home place.

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The moral dimensions of the student loan crisis

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The average price of a college education is $140,000.

Very few people have the resources to cover that cost, so they must turn to student loans to make attending college possible. Often with caution thrown to the wind, 70 percent of college students take out student loans.

In fact, roughly 45,000,000 Americans owe a staggering $1.6 trillion, which has resulted in a national and personal financial crisis of significant proportions. Many students incur huge debt, hoping that it all will turn out well.

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Wall Street outsiders versus hedge funds played out in GameStop run

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The investment world was convulsed last week when at least one hedge fund (Melvin Capital) lost billions of dollars. The sudden, massive losses happened when a tidal wave of independent individual investors, spearheaded by posts on reddit.com, triggered a short squeeze that torpedoed the hedge fund.

For those of you unfamiliar with a “short squeeze,” let me explain. Most stock market investors “go long.” That means that they buy a stock and then hope to sell it later at a higher price.

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What six dollars can do 

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When I was 16 years old, I was invited to speak at a little country church in rural Denver, Ky., not far from Paintsville. 

The church had all but closed its doors, but one man, Harold Rice and his family, wanted to see the church stay open and do well. 

A church with few to almost no people typically does not attract too many interested ministers. I had spoken in my home church a few times and was a guest speaker in a few others.

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Shot in the arm

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I’m in transition from journalism to the counseling profession, and I’m working part time in a mental health clinic.

That position qualified me, as a health-care worker, for the first tier of the COVID-19 vaccine. I was able to secure an appointment at the Canadian County Health Department Clinic at the Yukon Community Center Dec. 31.

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Yes, Dr. Fauci, you do need to have some humility here

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“When polls said only about half of all Americans would take a vaccine, I was saying herd immunity would take 70 to 75 percent,” Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and public face of the federal government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, told the New York Times in December.

“Then, when newer surveys said 60 percent or more would take it, I thought, ‘I can nudge this up a bit,’ so I went to 80, 85.”

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Latest COVID-19 relief package has several important priorities

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Last week, Congress passed H.R. 133, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, providing coronavirus relief and federal appropriations until Sept. 30, 2021. The bipartisan, bicameral package included a number of important priorities.

Key priorities included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act include:

RAMP-UP Act:

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Price transparency will protect Oklahoma patients

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It’s simple: When you step into your doctor’s office or go to the hospital for a routine service or procedure, you should know the cost. Unfortunately, however, too many patients are left in the dark regarding their bill.

The lack of price transparency for medical pricing in the United States causes fear and headaches for many families needing care.