Beacon Blogs

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When you can’t budge it

The Trump administration issued a preliminary “skinny” budget proposal a few months ago, followed more recently by its official 2018 budget request to Congress. Of the many draconian cuts the budget would impose, I want to talk about two that would particularly affect older Americans were they to go into effect. 

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A look back, and forward

I don’t know what possessed me, but the other day, as I was contemplating what to write about this month, I got the idea of looking back to see what I wrote in my column exactly 10 years ago — in our June 2007 issue. I was struck by how timely that 10-year-old column seems to be for us today. So I am repeating it below, with this bit of introduction.

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Growing like weed

Last month, I addressed the subject of pain management in the context of opioid pain relievers such as Vicodin and Percocet. Use of these painkillers — both by patients with legitimate prescriptions and by those obtaining them illegally — has exploded in recent years, leading many experts to speak of an “epidemic” of addiction and overdose that is claiming many lives each year.

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The pendulum swings

Recently, there has been an explosion of studies, lawsuits and newspaper articles highlighting what many are calling America’s opioid crisis or epidemic. While the term opioid includes illegal drugs like heroin, it also encompasses a variety of prescription painkillers, including OxyContin, Percocet and Vicodin.

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Dignity vs. quality of life

I was struck by a thought the other day (happens now and then). I still haven’t decided exactly how I feel about it, but I’d like to explore it with you. More Americans appear to be moving to the view that capital punishment is not acceptable. Nearly half of all states have abolished it or had their courts overturn it, and the number continues to grow.

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Listen up, Washington

As a new administration prepares to take power in Washington, I want to revisit a topic that long-time readers know I like to address every few years: Social Security. It’s an evergreen topic for me, since I can count on Congress and the White House continuing to refuse taking any steps to obviate the problems that are growing worse by the day.

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Being heard

In so many aspects of life, we can find ourselves frustrated because we feel we aren’t being heard. It happens between parents and kids; it happens between spouses; it happens at school and at work. When we feel our views are dismissed and our needs are ignored, we want to bash a wall, gnash our teeth, trash our rooms or worse.

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Kudos to our writers

Each year, we enter a selection of our writers’ original stories in the journalism competitions of the National Mature Media Awards and the North American Mature Publishers Association (NAMPA). We do this for two reasons: One, as a way to be sure we are keeping up the quality of our writing compared with other publications throughout the country.

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Head in the clouds

It used to be, if you said someone “had his head in the clouds,” you meant his mind was elsewhere; he wasn’t paying attention.

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Not to be missed

Who will be the lucky winner of a 10-day vacation for two to China? One lucky attendee at the 2016 Beacon 50+Expos, that’s who!

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